Thursday, 28 July 2016

The Sleeping Prince

So recently the duke of Hindustan Mr Rahul Gandhi was caught taking a quick nap while a heated debate on Dalit atrocities was going on in the parliament.

To be honest I am hardly surprised at the matter because as Indians we possess several hidden talents such as dozing off during flight takeoffs  amongst others. Come on who doesn’t enjoy a nap. Even some of our pilots do.

Soon enough the matter snowballed into a huge media outcry and prime time debate slots were reserved to discuss the matter. Party members fought tooth and nail to defend his actions giving statements like that he was only moistening his eyes or that it was a Yoga technique to enhance listening abilities. Some even came to the conclusion that he was simply in deep introspection thinking about the plight of Dalits. At this stage they are collectively simply one step away from proclaiming that he was not sleeping but simply closed his eyes to establish a telepathic connection with extraterrestrials to check their views on the debate.

Now Mr Rahul Gandhi truly faces a big conundrum indeed. It’s like when your teacher asks if you were sleeping or not during class. Regardless of the answer you will definitely get into trouble.
I was fortunate enough to have caught the primetime debate on Times Now where mature men were passionately debating the Rahul Gandhi fiasco. One of the panelists raised doubts as to if Mr Gandhi was pro or anti Dalits. When the sleeping incident of Mr Modi was mentioned another panelist quickly defended him saying that he slept because he had just returned from a long international tour and was a bit tired.

Now this raises the confusion as to what is the right time for things to be considered serious enough. For example when is it exactly considered a ‘violent’ day at the parliament. When a member breaks a table or is it when the prime minister performs a chokeslam on a member of the opposition. These are grey areas indeed.

Over the years our politicians have been caught sleeping at critical junctures whenever India’s future was being shaped. It’s high time that we as a nation establish mutually agreed descriptive rules as to what really constitutes as ‘sleep’.

-Eyes closed and head sideways  or

-Eyes partially open and slouching on the chair or

-Eyes gazing down and staring at the floor with no facial gestures.

The list can go on and on.Like most things even these naps would be governed by laws like-

-The culprit should be able to furnish evidence of any trip undertaken within the past 24 hours (including but not limited to intergalactic voyages).

-In case the member is in deep introspection with their eyes closed, he/she should place their fist under their chin every 2 minutes to indicate their reflective nature prominently. Failure to do so would lead to disciplinary action.

- Keeping your eyes closed for elongated ‘moistening’ purposes is permitted if you have conjunctivitis or have broken a world record in cutting onions recently.

Maybe we can take a cue from the British House of Commons where all the members sit stuffed up next to each other. As a patriotic Indian, trust me its poetic justice indeed seeing your former rulers suffer in silence. Their seating pattern is like those property advertisements in Mumbai where you see spacious houses with European models flipping hot aloo parathas and in reality all you get is a pigeon hole.
Getting our parliamentarians sit closer to each other would besides making them feel conscious all the time also serve greater goals such as increasing their accuracy at throwing furniture around.

Till the wise folks figure out their next step, I am off to sleep during daytime. One of life’s simple pleasures I get being a Rahul without the Gandhi surname.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Podcast Ep#1- Till Butter chicken do us apart

My debut humour podcast where I talk about butter chicken shampoo,badshah masala,human evolution,big data and live streaming toothbrushes.

Visit the link below and click the follow button to get instant updates of my forthcoming podcasts

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Tips for first time cat owners

A small token of love from me to cats and cat lovers. Try not to hate me. Remember unlike cats you just have one lifetime to settle all your scores with me. 

Join my YouTube page for more troll videos- 

Monday, 9 May 2016

The quintessential guide to flying like a maharaja

Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here

Flights, as some of us know them, are air-pressurised metal tubes designed to facilitate humans to indulge in small talk with random strangers at 35,000 feet above sea level.

I still remember my first flight way back as a kid, we couldn't get on to the plane till my mom packed us aloo puri in spite of innumerable assurances that we would be served on the aircraft. You see, Punjabi kids like me rank mid-air food scarcity crises higher than potential flight hijacking.
Air India's unofficial mascot, PM Modi, boards a flight.

There was a time in the pre-recession days, when air hostesses would come with a tray full of toffees and offer it to the passengers before the take-off. Like an imbecile, on my first flight, I took the whole tray from the air hostess, only to be given a seemingly comforting excuse:

"Take a few toffees, and I will mail you the whole tray on your birthday."

I am 24 years old and that tray still hasn't shown up on my door. So ma'am, just in case you're reading this, do get in touch urgently. I got some scores to settle.

Soon, with the passage of time, the aviation sector realised that it had to come up with a new business model to sustain long-term growth efficiently. Budget airlines were launched, which gave no freebies at all, and thus offered lower airfares.

I am in love with the Air India model of budget airlines known as Air India Express. The best part is that they don't let you feel like you are in an actual budget airline since they serve you complimentary refreshments onboard.

It's almost like they feel guilty that you have fallen on such bad times that you have to travel by a budget airline. The thing about flying Air India is that somewhere deep down, you know very well that if you coax the airhostess, she will quickly churn out gajar ka halwa (Indian carrot confection) onboard for you. It's precisely this motherly love that keeps the airline from falling apart.

Budget airlines offer you a complimentary-picnic-kind of an environment nowadays. Families bring in boxes full of McAloo Tikki burgers onboard as that is one of the cheapest items on the menu in an airport food court.

This is usually followed by a mini burger distribution ceremony where relatives sitting in all corners of the aircraft get their share while hurling choicest abuses at the MNC chain for being miserly in handing out ketchup sachets.

Since these flights don't have any great entertainment options, people are forced to come up with innovative ways to amuse themselves, like peeling oranges, cutting toe nails, settling ancestral family feuds onboard et al.

Airlines, in an attempt to make you feel hospitable, had started announcing cabin crew names and now they have gone a step ahead by announcing their locations.

"The chief air stewardess on our flight to Bombay is Miss Tanya Malhotra who hails from Ghatkopar. Assisting her shall be Miss Shilpa Gupta who hails from Thane (East). Please feel free to get in touch with them if you seek to share the cab ride home."

I am rather delighted about the fact that airlines give all cabin crew members their share of recognition by announcing their names, but does one need to call out their locations on domestic flights too, considering all of them are from India?

They might as well share insignificant information about their diet plans to complete the circle.

"Miss Tanya goes for a low carb diet on Tuesdays. However, every Thursday she is only on protein shakes all day long, and tends to capitalise on her moral high ground by reminding people munching samosas around her about their short lifespan due to potential cholesterol issues."

Also, I don't really get why pilots feel that it's their moral duty to give live updates of the flight stats every now and then. 

Dear pilots, please bear in mind:
Passengers in general:
1) Are mathematically challenged and can't comprehend both altitude and speed at once,
2) They are busy flipping pages of the inflight duty free shopping magazine not due to any "genuine" interest in shopping, but simply because it has an aristocratic feel to it.

Finally, the last hit was the global financial crisis. Airlines went into a hyper austerity mode. Finance teams worked overtime and every minute cost was stringently worked out and analysed on countless Excel sheets.

So one fine day, the CEO of a major airline, introduced the new finance head in a Captain Planet style announcement:

"Deceit, treachery, greed and indifference - with the powers of all combined, I give you Captain A**hole!"

This announcement was met with a thunderous applause. The new finance head was bright indeed and had some valid suggestions like:

"Sir, we could meddle around with the thermostat by a few degrees to optimise the energy consumption and make it perfectly calibrated to cause passengers' discomfort, yet not so much that they will have the courage to raise their voice and bother the cabin crew. Also, we can save water consumption by ensuring our faucets only release either soul stirring cold or lava spewing hot water. This way, we save costs and even get to boast around the globe about our low carbon footprint, compared to competitors."

Soon, the practices were aped by everyone in the aviation sector. Thus began its downfall. Here's hoping there is some light at the end of the tunnel.

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

A beginner's guide to the Indian Budget 2016

(Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here)

It was that day of the year yesterday. I mean February 29, which comes once in every four years. It is quite literally the Uday Chopra of the Gregorian calendar. You know it's going to strike you and yet there's nothing you can do to prevent it.

Besides this, there were other matters of global prominence too, namely, the Oscars and "OMG, OMG Priyanka Chopra exhaling carbon dioxide at the Oscars." This comes as a bit of a surprise, as Indian emotions in general about American matters are pretty limited to whether or not American customs will allow you to take mango pickle into the country.

However yesterday was also Budget Day in India, or as I would like to call it, the "annual CA planetary relevance reminder". Now Budget speeches are way too boring and require endurance to watch from start to finish. Especially when Indian audiences are accustomed to the "WWE Hell in the Cell" theatrics, which are quite a common sight on an average day in the Parliament.

Budget speeches are filled with way too much of financial jargon for the common man to comprehend. Allow me to, then, put my knowledge of accountancy to some good public use finally and gain some karmic brownie points in the bargain. Trust me, you're in safe hands... well almost!

The budget session of the Parliament started as always with the finance minister posing in front of the press with an age-old briefcase which is supposed to contain the well-guarded Budget papers. In an alternate universe, in case I do get selected for this coveted post, I would love to just open a briefcase full of samosas and kachoris on Budget Day simply to troll the photographers.

The standard operating procedures are pretty simple. News channels across the nation stream Budget updates live and citizens are supposed to act shocked and traumatised over every other announcement as if they didn't know the Budget was going to screw them up eventually. It's like walking into a Barbecue Nation outlet for dinner and getting stunned by diarrhoea next morning.
While hogging away a year worth of calories in one meal, deep within, you knew very well that things won't go too well next morning, but you still carried on shamelessly. Coincidentally, this is how the government works too. When you splurge a bit too much, you need to unload a fraction of your wealth to the government coffers too.

The trauma is usually accompanied by choicest slur words aimed at ministers and their posterity.

Cigarette prices have been raised to promote cohesion amongst teenage addicts and also to teach them the importance of sharing, be it the lunch box or their packet of Gold Flake. Movie tickets are also going to cost more shortly, which is a subtle way of saying 

"Hey, who the f**k are you to enjoy simple pleasures in life, that too in Dolby Digital Surround Sound, when the movie is going to come up on TV two months down the line?"

Electronic items would get costlier so you might not want to sever ties with your foreign-based relatives even though they usurped all your ancestral property. Branded garments will attract higher excise duties thus giving snobbish kids more things to brag about, besides their cars, houses and that De Beers diamond necklace which coincidentally happens to come with a loving and caring mom attached to it. You see, on a scale of priorities, human emotions come after materialistic possessions for this breed.

Start-ups formed between April 2016 and March 2019 shall enjoy a tax break for three years unless they make a viral YouTube web series midway chronicling their struggles, in which case, they shall get rewarded with a cameo by none other than Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Provident funds, that is, the last hope of social security for the salaried class shall become taxable soon. Bet the conversation between a middle class person and a government employee would be as follows:

Middle class guy: "Hey, you can't just tax my whole life's savings, that too when I am about to retire!"

Government guy: "Don't get so emotional. At least you didn't get rammed and killed by the SUV of a drunk celebrity. Isn't that enough mental relief?"

Middle class guy: "Boss, what about my social security?"

Government guy: "You know you could have been struck down by lightening, floods, lamp posts falling, open sewers, what not. India offers some highly creative ways to get killed. Count your blessings."

Middle class guy: "What the..."

Government guy: "Bloody greedy guy you are!"

Telephone bills shall get higher owing to increased telecom spectrum rates. So just in case you're looking around for a credible reason to snap out of your long distance relationship, this is a godsend opportunity indeed.

Food outings at restaurants shall cost more owing to higher service tax which shall inevitably cause a sharp rise of a new breed of foodies who shall overnight discover their passion for street food at roadside stalls.

SUVs shall attract a cess of four per cent from henceforth. However, vehicles registered as ambulances and used solely as ambulances shall be exempt from cess. So just in case you have a habit of going to parties in ambulances, blasting "To Brazil" by Vengaboys on full volume,

a) You are an a**hole indeed!

b) You will have to pay taxes to pursue this noble hobby of yours.
The government is also offering a four-month compliance window for domestic black money holders to search deep within their soul for finding out any last few shreds of morality.

Last, but not the least, here are a few terms for your reference. It's strongly recommended that you use them to sound wise in any conversations remotely revolving around the topic of the Budget.
1. Crony capitalism.
2. Dampened spirits.
3. Creditable credit.
4. Transgressors (a "cooler" synonym for violators).
5. Fiscal deficit target.
6. Financial rationalisation.

Yes, you're welcome!
Here's hoping that we have a prosperous year ahead and also that we get the opportunity to time travel in the future just to see if our green cards get approved or not.

Disclaimer: Do not take any financial or personal decisions on the basis of the article above. Just in case you do, feel free to mail me as to how horribly wrong it went. I might just get some material for my next column.

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Tips to nail a job interview


It's a competitive job market out there. 
Here's a few tips to give you the wining edge.Subscribe to my youtube channel for upcoming videos.Click Here Stay tuned for more!

Friday, 11 December 2015

My meat is more tolerable than yours

Candid pic of Osmania University students busy outraging.Call now for organizing beef parties at your home.

Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here

Food is the basis for mankind's existence on the planet. It also that thing which human society deems ‘edible’ & ‘fresh’ by the mere sprinkling of few coriander leaves over it. In prehistoric times food consisted primarily of a mixture of wild dusty leaves & raw meat or as McDonald's calls it Chicken Salad.

Amidst the nationwide intolerance debate, Osmania University has vowed to make its little contribution by organizing a beef festival .Another student body within the same campus decided to launch a counter campaign by announcing a pork festival. Now it's a well-known fact that consumption of beef and pork is considered nothing short of a sin in Hindu & Muslim communities respectively.
Such acts would eventually cause communal conflicts.

Since the student bodies at Osmania University are on a religious sentiment hurting spree, let’s burn a few more bridges. Shall we?
Hey Osmania University kids,
#FunFact - Jain religion prohibits consumption of all kinds of meat, garlic, onions amongst other things. So here's hoping I am getting complimentary passes to your annual Chicken Adraki (Ginger Chicken) festival.

I believe the only time in pre independent India the beef controversy gained traction was during Mangal Pandey’s when the bullets were rumoured to be greased with pig & cow fat. Mangal Pandey felt scandalized indeed. It’s one of those anomalies to strike the face of earth like Mad Over Donuts serving motichur ladoo flavoured donuts.

I personally don't quite get the logic behind these all–you-can-eat buffet protests. Now if my local cinema chain doesn’t allow me to take home food inside the hall. It’s a set rule. I don’t think in this or an alternate universe, will I ever go and munch aloo parathas at the cinema entrance to mark my protest. There are better ways to address the matter. If one simply has to outrage to kill time, then outrage for the some worthy causes at least like poverty, illiteracy etc.

Both protests, be it the beef or pork one are equally pointless. By all means consume it in your house unless you happen to reside in states where its consumption is completely banned.

 Contrary to popular belief, the Gods above do not keep Microsoft Excel sheets tallying the number of times you ate what .So Jesus and Lord Krishna don’t go around exchanging KPI scores with each other-

Lord Krishna- “Bro, what if I told you I have 1.5 lakh sinners in food related offences this quarter”

Jesus-“ lol I guess it’s the right time for you to stop dreaming about your year end appraisals. Speaking of year end, my alcohol offences numbers are going to break all records this year. These Russians, I tell you never seem to get ‘enough’ of alcohol. My gun related sinner count grew marginally by 2% this quarter and according to my forecasts it will show a steady decline starting from the 2nd quarter of 2016. Anyways I will catch you later. I have a budget review session to attend.”

Unfortunately the beef festival did take place, but thanks to the heavy police force deployed on campus they could only cook it in their hostel rooms. Remember the last time you heard about hostel boys getting excited about cooking ? Ya, me neither.

Here’s hoping all the hostel kids learn some more dishes and consequently launch a swadeshi movement equivalent boycott of deplorable mess food served across hostels in India.

In conclusion, all I would like to say is that feel free to do whatever you want but just don’t get butter chicken in the midst of the debate. You see in Punjabi households like mine, intergalactic wars can get sparked off in the butter chicken supremacy debate. Till we meet again, Adios!

Friday, 9 October 2015

Guide to coping after your religious sentiments have been hurt

(Article written exclusively for India Today- Click Here)
Bapu Swag

It's a shiny Sunday afternoon. You are busy surfing the internet while simultaneously dipping mozzarella sticks into cheddar cheese dip to maintain the karmic balance on the planet.

While browsing you casually spot a random online post which is offensive to your religion. At least it looks and feels offensive to you, so it probably is. So f**k logic. What does one do now? Should you shamelessly continue munching those mozzarella sticks? 

Should you stop stalking your ex's Facebook profile to sulk about her ugly kids while simultaneously visualising what greek gods would have walked upon this earth, if the two of you had offsprings?

All of a sudden whatever you stood for in life, your values, beliefs, traditions and so on are at threat. The world has come to a standstill and the whole human clan counts on you to act responsibly, to save your religion from falling apart.

Stay calm, you are not alone in this fight for religious supremacy. Ideally, you should start by spreading the offensive post to as many people as you can over Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email, WhatsApp and also Google Plus for those countless extraterrestrials who are loyal to it. This might offend more people than originally intended to, but the masses should be well aware that their holy gods are under attack, right?

For a moment ponder upon the benevolent, gracious, merciful (add a few dozen adjectives more according to your vocabulary level) almighty, who cannot prevent mortals from tarnishing his name. Up above in the heavens surely an angel gets barbecued when someone offends religion on our planet. Somewhere in religious texts there definitely would be a line going like, "Destroy your whole continent on the remote signs of potentially getting offended."

Do not ever feel threatened or perturbed. After all, you are indeed on a noble mission. Men making pasta single-handedly isn't cool. You know what's cool? Saving your religion and that to on a weekend. Quite an ungodly feat to pull off indeed.
To save your religion from offenders you may need the following:
1. A catchy slogan effectively conveying your feelings. If possible slyly fit the slogan into tunes of some latest item number for maximum reach, for example:

  • "Dj wale Babu, in infidels ki baja de."
  • *on infinite loop mode*

2. Good quality fluffy effigies. Decorating effigies is no joke and requires cutting edge creative skills. It's strongly recommended that you opt for eco-friendly effigies which release low carbon emissions. If not your protest, at least your effigy will be covered well by the media.

3. Angry bunch of protesters from all walks of life. To ease the process you should consider putting an ad on with your exact requirements and a few mandatory questions to filter the crème de la crème of protesters. Mandatory questions like the following can be filled in by the candidate:

Q1) How would you rank your sword-wielding abilities?

Q2) When was the last time you shot down a fellow Homo sapiens on a lousy pretext such as occupying your parking spot? (PS: Delhi applicants kindly write "not applicable" for this answer.)

Q3) In case you spot a burning school bus with kids shouting "help! help!" parked right opposite a wall with a swastika sign on it on which a guy is busy urinating, what would your next reaction be?

Voila! You are now destined for a fruitful protest. Feel free to vent outrage. The more, the merrier. Don't feel guilty at any point. Chill! The divine powers above definitely have better things to do than keeping count of your ghastly sins. God's territorial jurisdiction is pretty much limited to the US and UK, as evident by their propagating of anthems/slogans like "God save the queen" and "God bless America".

Once you are done with your protest it's time to measure how successful your protest went. It can be measured on the following parameters:

1. The number of struggling actors which popped up out of thin air to show their solidarity with your cause.

2. The number of public buses torched for viral videos.

Soldier, it's not time to sit back and rest on your laurels as yet. As a self-proclaimed guardian of your religion you should consistently endeavour to search for choiciest offensive content. Beware! If you fail to do so, you might unknowingly offend other people for not taking offence in the first place.

Till we bump into each other on yet another aimless protest, adios!

Monday, 31 August 2015

Ghajini Decoded

Article produced exclusively for MTV India-(Click Here)

(Recommended-Zoom in for better viewing- press Ctrl & + on your kebyboard)

The story keeps revolving back and forth to Aamir’s past and present. He is diagnosed with short term memory loss. He seeks to take revenge against the killers of his lady love, Kalpana (Asin).

Needless to say, things get violent as time passes.

He is Mr Perfectionist indeed. The way he adjusts the corpse of his assailant to get a perfect shot is remarkable.

Kalpana (Asin) is a happy go lucky girl working at an ad agency as a model. Throughout the film she is portrayed as 2nd in running to Mother Teresa.

Kalpana spreads a false rumour that she is dating tycoon Sanjay at the request of her manager. This rumour doesn’t come to light till the end as ‘nobody’ has seen Sanjay since he was in USA This is an idiotic logic to give but I shall be generous enough to give benefit of doubt to the scriptwriters. So let’s just assume that pigeons and smoke signals were the only way of communicating with the outer world. Sanjay acts as a struggling model in front of her & they both fall in love soon after.

Sunita (Jiah Khan) plays the role of an overenthusiastic medical student who spooks out patients for an adrenaline rush.

Sanjay, when not adoring his tattoos is usually busy beating the shit out of malnourished goons.

Ghajini is the owner of a big shot pharmaceutical company and the prime villain of this story.


Sanjay opens an orphanage in Kalpana’s name and gets back to his routine life.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

One man’s KFC bucket, is another man’s apocalypse

(Article written exclusively for FirstPost- Click Here)


The theory of human evolution suggests that the earliest known form of homo sapiens filled their bellies by eating leaves. Soon enough they discovered more productive ways of consuming leaves like smoking marijuana. Just to add some diversity to their palate, they started hunting animals for food. The rest they say is history.

Recently a family in Mumbai was harassed for cooking and consuming non veg food in their apartment. The matter soon blew out of proportion with an FIR being lodged and political parties springing into action.

The victim Govind Chavan alledged that most of the people in the building were Gujaratis and Marwaris and wanted them to leave the building.The incident began when someone threw some water from one of the balconies and the wise souls standing on the ground floor assumed it must be the Chavan family disposing water after cleaning fish. You literally need to have superpowers to smell and decipher water droplets falling from a height. Bet Lord Voldermort would have spared Harry Potter in exchange for this skill.

The angry residents marched to Chavan's house demanding an explanation for the only to be greeted with an egg hurling session orchestrated by the family members thereby ensuring that all potential discussions were disrupted.

I am not quite sure of the part of the Old Testament which read somewhat like-

"Love thy neighbour unconditionally, unless it's a gujarati in which case shower egg yolk and love (always in that order) for neighbourly brotherhood"

To add to the nail biting drama, Supriya Chavan even tossed a glass at them & got a water bottle thrown back at her.

Soon enough members of local political parties arrived on scene to lend support to the harassed family and decided to launch a protest on the spot and give the whole incident a maharashtrian v/s non maharashtrian flavour.

Our lovely nation is just a few years away from initiating "dial -a-dharna" services. Can't wait to see adverts on billboards proclaiming

"Did the sizzling brownie at your local restaurant not sizzle well enough? It's time to beat the f**k out of the restaurant owner. Call 1800-DHARNA"

Gujaratis having issues with non veg food is nothing new. Having lived in Gujarat for 3 long years I hereby assure the rest of the nation that people snorting cocaine out there have a moral high ground compared to people having non vegetarian food. Restaurants give out non veg food take aways in conspicuous black coloured polythene bags which are ironically meant to camouflage the contents although the whole world knows what you are carrying in it. You're more likely to get hospitable gazes from pedestrians while carrying rocket launchers on the streets than a packed chicken meal.

It's ironic how exchanging stale food with garnished coriander leaves amongst neighbours is applauded & considered an act of goodwill whereas eating non vegetarian food in your flat becomes an issue.

Being a non vegetarian myself, I have utmost respect for people with other dietary preferences but have an issue when people treat each other as outcastes due to their gastronomic preferences.

Vegetarians are primarily of two kinds -

a) The "I-Am-So-Pure-Veg-That-Lettuce-Leaves-Attain-Moksha-After-My- Consumption" kinds

b) The "I-Don't-Eat-NonVeg-Food-On-Tuesdays-&-Thursday-Thus-I-am Absolved-Of-All-Karmic-Sins" kinds

Pure vegetarians are a separate breed all together and are in a constant battle against the universe to eliminate any & every minute trace of non veg food in a radius of 50 kms. Recently to test my hypothesis I put a KFC apple pie in the fridge & voila soon enough it was lying in the bin. One could possibly wrap a dead body in KFC wrapping paper and rest assured your pure veg roomie will get rid of it within a few hours.

God bless the Mughals for bringing biryanis,kebabs,tikkas etc to India. In my head I cannot somehow imagine a scene with Shah Jahan feasting on broccoli and bottle gourd aka the infamous lauki & the world is a happier place ever after.

Adios for now off to much some spinach for good karma.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Et Tu Haldiram's?

Haldiram's, that one name fills all Indians with pride besides the fact that 34% of Microsoft employees & 36% of NASA employees are Indians as attested by those whatsapp forwards, a numerical fact that has never changed since the past few decades. Why? Because, f**k attrition.

For my international readers, Haldiram's is a big corporate in the F&B segment in India with prominent exports abroad.

Recent reports state that the US regulatory body FDA has declared a ban on majority of Haldiram's products as they were deemed 'unfit' for consumption. A month back Maggi, a product by Swiss food giant Nestle was banned in India by regulatory authorities due to the high lead content found in it after multiple tests. Left with no great choice fellow Indians have Top Ramen Noodles left to drown their sorrows in.

Recognizing Top Ramen Noodles as 'noodles' is potentially the 2nd biggest setback to Indian cuisine in recent years, the first one being Sanjeev Kapoor shaving off his moustache.
It's a known fact that you can add Haldiram's aloo bhujia to any dish under the sun and it will become palatable. It's undoubtedly the aam aadmi's cocaine. Like any outraged customer I marched straight into the kitchen to finish any half eaten packs of Haldiram's snacks so that I could outrage in peace happily ever after.

As a consumer I have braced myself completely, as the worst is yet to come. For all you know the divine Kelloggs Chocos might be adulterated with healthy things like 'soya' or any other satanic substance or for that matter if Frooti gets revealed as basically egg yolk with mango flavouring.

A senior official from Haldiram's commented that "some pesticides are not permitted in USA unlike India and our products are completely safe". Bet Hitler used a similar line to draw consensus for his gas concentration camps

"Gas concentration camps may not be permitted in other countries but they are safe & fool proof, trust me. I successfully eliminated thousands of Jews."

Food contamination in India is acceptable till the time a random westerner wearing a lab coat assures us on national television that what we are consuming is safe. What is a  bigger concern for me is that companies with spooky bunnies as their mascot are allowed to co- exist on the planet without any legal ramifications. No offense, Lijjat Papad.

In the coming days extensive PR campaigns will be run by both Maggi & Haldiram's to pacify their consumer base. I am glad that Haldiram's didn't ever have an A list Bollywood star as a brand ambassador lest the nation would have held him/her to ransom for quality testing issues.

Social media is a potent tool undoubtedly. Within minutes of any product contamination incident your post can get viral. Recently while going through my Facebook timeline I happened to see this picture of a dead cockroach in a chocolate ice cream pack. There were some visionary comments below it like- 

"Bro, they gave you free non veg for the price of pure veg item."

"At least the cockroach didn't end up in a flush. Thug life!"

"Cocoa is main ingredient in chocolate. Most of it comes from Africa, so avoiding anything chocolate related will save you from Ebola."

The way things are heading I am sure down the line some noble soul will publish a nostalgic book with high resolution photo collection of cockroaches who went beyond their call of duty and landed up in various Indian delicacies be it paneer masala, butter chicken etc.

Recently a study in Delhi concluded that street food contains high level of faecal matter. This study indeed raises existential questions on the foodies who suffer from the 'my pani puri guy has more water flavours than yours, Bitch!' syndrome. Death by diarrhea for the while.Off to gorge on some hand sanitizer filled pani puris. Till we meet again, Adios!  

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