Things I like and hate about Kolkata

I know I’ll be facing a lot of silent flak after posting this article. So, I should mention I am too busy to care about that. As I had mentioned earlier I am not here to please anyone. That job is for the hypocrites and yes, I know quite a few of them from the blogging community. For the record I am not pointing any fingers mainly because I am not in the mood.

I’ll start with the things I like because this list will be shorter. As it happens, there’s only one thing I like about Kolkata and it is the food. There are a variety of places where one can eat based on cuisine, quality and price. I never had a problem in finding a place whether I wanted to eat out of need or for pleasure. There is a whole range of restaurants on park street suiting everyone’s pocket and taste. Everyone doesn’t include those living below the poverty line. I know everybody will agree with me on this.
Next comes the things I hate. Where should I start? Alright here goes:
1. Culture: Well, it’s almost lost. The over enthusiastic parents in their pursuit of forcing their children to excel in school, college and then bagging a well paying job have forgotten to teach the basic principles of life. These principles include paying respect to elders and women, polite behavior, respecting nature. The biggest example is the recent case sexual abuse in Jadavpur University. This brings me to the second point.
2. Delusion of being the best: Yes, Bengalis used to be the best in India. Then the sense of false superiority crept in. People stopped working hard. It’s the same for everyone starting from a rickshaw puller to a professor in a college or an executive in a private firm. Now a time has come when no one wants to improve himself. When criticized, the reply is “why should I care? Everyone around me is going the same way”. The result of this thought process is a society slowly degrading into a smelly sewer.
3. Continued glorification of mediocrity: In the previous point I established that the majority doesn’t want to improve. The corollary of that thought process is continuously glorifying mediocrity and shunning divergent chains of thought. Why do they do this? The answer is simple, if someone encourages a fresh idea, he will have to think along that line too which is an exercise for the brain or extra work one might say. Obviously no one wants to toil more than required to fill their stomachs. It has become so innate they term any new idea as dumb straight away.
4. Intellectualism: When I was younger I used to think that intellectuals were intelligent people who read a lot to increase their brain capacity. I was naive back then. Then I grew up, my naivety decreased with increased exposure. I got to know intellectuals are not actually intelligent, they just pretend to be. They have indeed read a lot not to increase their brain capacity but just to make up for the lack of it. They are a pain, they will defend their ideas with any kind of crap they can gather from the books they have read. For example, I had a debate with one such individual regarding the contingency from West Bengal which visited Singapore to attract investment. I had stated firmly that the people visiting Singapore will achieve nothing because they were unorganized and contained trash from every sector of West Bengal. The person debated using every kind of senseless argument. My point was simple, the state is cash strapped thus the team should be very small and members should be well prepared and there is absolutely no reason to include an MP who has no experience outside the silver screen. As a matter of fact he didn’t have any experience in acting either till he landed in the hands of a genius director. The aforementioned person debated till he could not counter my logic and fled so that he didn’t have to accept that he was wrong. Recent news articles have proved that mission Singapore was a failure and that fool hasn’t accepted he was wrong that day.
5. Supporting Bangladeshi insurgency: Apparently all Bangladeshis are brothers of the Indian Bengalis. I don’t know how does this logic even comes to someone’s mind when 43 years back Hindus were butchered by the same brothers. I would have forgotten about the past if I had seen any improvement in current situation. Those insurgents cross the border, some of them settle in the state and siphon off the resources. They don’t even contribute to the economy and encroach wherever possible and after a few years start demanding rights. The ones who don’t settle either commit robberies or participate in terrorist attacks on our country. Somehow this is all fine for the people in Kolkata. It doesn’t bother them that the taxes they pay are being used to feed illegal immigrants who have no acceptable reason to use our resources.
6. Pseudo secularism: Oxford dictionary defines secular as “Not connected with religious or spiritual matters”. An average person calls our society secular and then lets most of his decisions to be governed by religious sentiments which are most of the time fake. I am not against any specific religion but I am against a specific set of principles, principles which hinder peace and development of my country. This set of principles cannot be attributed to any specific community but the majority of the followers of these fundamentals can be. When I point this out I am termed as communal whereas the people using this adjective for me are too blind to see the truth. A few days back I tried to discuss and find a peaceful solution to this problem with someone I had falsely assumed to be liberal. He accused me of trying to create panic and chaos. It didn’t occur to him even once that his fatty build will be of no use during a riot, which wasn’t even my intent. He is not the only example. I have had heated arguments with my uncle and cousin. I had a plain proposition, if everyone is equal why open educational institutions for a specific community? Why can’t they attend normal schools? They are not mentally or physically challenged. Why would a set of laws be applicable to one section of the population and not for the rest? The so called seculars have a common disadvantage, myopic vision. If everything was fine in our country then there wouldn’t have been any supporters for an organization like ISIS or Al Qaeda who are not known for their humanitarian activities. Everyone of these seculars protest against RSS and the likes. I don’t deny quite a few members of those groups are extremists and should be taken care of. However, during the latest Jammu and Kashmir floods I didn’t find any isis or al Qaeda supporter risking their necks to evacuate the stranded. I have read how RSS helped people during Gujarat earthquake and now during the floods.
7. Overzealous behavior regarding international incidents: Yes, the residents of Kolkata are aware of all international incidents, Iraq crisis, occupation of Crimea, Israel Gaza conflict and are very vocal about right and wrong, at least what is presented to them as right and wrong. The Gaza supporters shed unbelievable amount of tears when Israel was trying to bring down Hamas. I agree a lot of innocents were killed and frankly it was partly their fault. They allowed Hamas and the likes to operate in their country.  For the record I don’t support any kind of atrocities against innocent civilians. However, I didn’t find the same supporters of Gaza shedding even a single tear when yazidi girls were sold as slaves in Iraq or even our own national calamity. I gathered they jump in excitement over media hype. Using their god gifted brain is too much work.
8. Stupidity: This is the last point and most persistent of my troubles all over the world. Yes, I use a specific term for the residents of Kolkata and that is”chhagol” or goat in English. They honk incessantly at red lights, have no sense of propriety, will cross roads even when there is a green light doesn’t matter if there is an oncoming vehicle. They’ll poke their noses in others’ private affairs even if their own life is going for a dip in the well. They have utmost patience for the people robbing them blind and they will slaughter anyone who tries to point out faults. The list is endless. I remember one of my uncles criticizing my decision of taking up teaching as a profession and calling me mad. The same person didn’t take a promotion because he would be transferred outside West Bengal and would have to work harder. It’s like a cow telling me how to eat meat.
3 years back I had started an educational institution in Kolkata in the hope of imparting knowledge that will help the kids in the long run and also to make some money through it. After 3 years of toiling I have lost all hope for the citizens. How can I help someone who doesn’t want to achieve anything worthwhile? Some people will try to counter this statement by saying what I term as improvement may not be required at all by the residents. Well, that might be true and I might be wrong but again I rarely see a Bengali from Kolkata as an IAS or IPS officer. Either the selection process is biased against Kolkata or the residents are that stupid. Given my judgements are wrong once a year, I say the residents are stupid. That will be all. This article is open to criticism however fake names and dumb arguments will not be tolerated.

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