THE UNCOMMON CREATOR OF THE UNCOMMON ‘COMMON MAN’ IS NO MORE

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I would ask this question regularly in my childhood while looking at, reading or trying to understand, that who was this grandpa.

He looked familiar, by his outlook, and funny enough to keep me with him with his glasses and bushy but carved moustache.

Eyes would go to that the pocket corner first while scanning the newspaper, after all who reads them in carefree and free days of childhood, to find what the grandpa-next-home would have come with to tell us next, irrespective of my level of understanding.

But even in those days of privileged ‘lack of understanding’, the grandpa and his corner was fairly understandable and engaging most of the time.

And with time, with growing exposure to the experiences of life, even this ‘lack of understanding’ was flattened out.

While deepening understanding about the essence of the ‘being of the grandpa’.

He was the ubiquitous, affable, lovable and quintessential Common Man, brought alive and made perpetual by R K Laxman, from the class of the legendary cartoonists of India, who passed away today at 94.

In childhood, if he made for the triad of ‘Chacha Chaudhary, TV adaptation of Malgudi Days, creation of his elder brother R K Narayan and the Common Man’ – one of the many outlets to pack as much content in my buzzing mind as possible – with growing adulthood and the subsequent years in life (and even now) – he was and has been among the primary ingredients of the daily dose of meaningful humour, satire the R K Laxman way – sometimes direct, sometimes subtle, at times both – but always enjoyable, always thought-provoking and always to-the-point.

R K Laxman’s ‘Common Man’ is among the most influential symbols of ‘cartoons being a serious tool of satire’.

And his Common Man has stayed ‘uniformly and brilliantly serious enough’ for decades to pull our attention, to push us to think, to make us smile on forced absurdities, excesses and trivialities.

The uncommon creator of the equally uncommon ‘Common Man’ breathed his last today after an illustrious career spanning decades where ‘he said’ and we ‘listened to him’.

But the common man is so quintessential to our existence, so imperative to our thinking and so intrinsic to our day-to-day lives that ‘The Common Man’ is going to stay with us forever – the best possible tribute to an artist – in this case, a legendary one, in league of his own – R K Laxman – Rest in Peace Sir.

Images: R K Laxman’s cartoons and images sourced from different online resources

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey–https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

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BROOM: NEW TOOL OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM

THE NEW TOOLS OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM IN THE INDIAN DEMOCRACY

Broom, the universal cleansing machine, was universally so understated (until now, at least in India). Even if the changing times brought to its contour the obvious advancements and the technological avatars, the mentality around the broom remained symbolically broom-type only.

The stereotyping can be understood by the fact that Wikipedia gives a well populated list of use of broom in cultural context and supports it with use of broom in witchcraft wizardry.

See, even Harry Potter, the hugely successful, iconic hero, having a global fan-following, creating the richest female author of the world, from scratch, even he could not change the perception. The Harry Potter Broom is listed on eBay and Amazon and returns with a number of links on the magical broomstick/broom used by the wizard boy on hitting it on Google and yet, the mighty broom has remained grossly understated.

The situation had become so hopeless, like the degradation of Indian politics that the broom proponents had abandoned their fight. Now, only a miracle could have revived the hope to start the efforts again, only a radical step could have rekindled the fire.

We cannot comment on the situation globally, in our limited capacity to get clear of the clutter in an age of information chaos, but, sure we can think on what is happening in India.

And that miracle happened in India; that radical step was taken in India.

It began in the name of the Aam Aadmi, the common man of India (if not with him in entirety, but, at least, it looked ‘intended’ to go beyond the mere the symbolism being practiced until now).

It began with a new political entrant in India, assembled mostly from apolitical names, the Aam Aadmi Party and its very special ‘Aam Aadmi’ (‘the’ common man) Arvind Kejriwal who ‘adopted’ broom as his party’s symbol.

He insisted he would get the universally functional broom its rightful due by using it metaphorically to cleanse the Indian politics, to sweep the System, to uproot it, or to remove the weeds.

And the journey on the path to fight for the rightful due has got its fighting verve with AAP emerging as an ‘Aam Aadmi’ metaphor threatening the established political masters.

So we had broom visibility as a protest tool against the System; so, we had some other political claimants claiming their right on ‘broom’ as their political symbol; so we had a major e-commerce site listing broom on its trading platform; so we have discourses on broom as an empowering metaphor of democracy now.

And it has emboldened the Indian Democracy this time to use the broom more effectively to correct its associates (claimed and natural) it seems. Its message to Mr. Kejriwal to use the broom to clean his own house also tells us so.

Now, it is to be seen if Mr. Kejriwal reads the writing on the wall.

The broom is now getting its proper due, thanks to the machinations of the Indian politics that is, thankfully, not self-evolving this time.

Next in the line:
MUFFLER: NEW TOOL OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

AAM AADMI: NEW TOOL OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM

THE NEW TOOLS OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM IN THE INDIAN DEMOCRACY

The first two months of 2014 have given the common man’s symbolism some vital tools to reflect on the centrality of the common man beyond the mere political symbolism. So how are they playing out to make the inroads?

The Common Man: The Aam Aadmi has become so lethal that it forced the Congress party to remove ‘Aam Aadmi’ from the age-old Congress’ slogan of fallacy, ‘Congress Ka Haath, Aam Aadmi Ke Saath’ (Congress’ Hand is for the Common Man – hand being the poll symbol of the grand old party of India).

It was power of the Aam Aadmi only that led to a massive surge in the pro Aam Aadmi sentiments after the Aam Aadmi gave the apolitically political Aam Aadmi Party a grand beginning in the assemblage of the political constellations, the entities that have acted like constellations mostly (though visible to us but they have hardly worked the common man way).

Congress removing Aam Aadmi is one instance of the symbolic significance of the common man in the Indian democracy happening now that is reflecting in the behaviour of the political masters of the country who, until now, have remained indifferent to the demands and needs of the Aam Aadmi. Whenever they gave us something – they gave us what they deemed apt for us. They didn’t ask what we really needed.

They are singing a different tune now. There is a mad rush not just to look pro Aam Aadmi, but also to act Aam Aadmi. And though we have solid reasons to believe that what the masters and the followers of the mainstream political parties are doing in the name of being ‘Aam’ is nothing but an opportunistic mask, they have to maintain the rhythm longer this time as the Aam Aadmi threat is here to continue its spell for quiet some time to come.

In spite of all the backtrackings and the bad name of the recent days, Arvind Kejriwal still remains one of the three top prime ministerial candidates in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and the Aam Aadmi Party still remains a valid political threat that can significantly cut across the votebanks of all the political masters.

Next in the line:
BROOM: NEW TOOLS OF COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

UNCOMMONNESS OF THE COMMON MAN IN THE POLL SEASON

India is a constitutionally proclaimed Republic where the basic unit of everything that goes into the concept of a democratic nation is the ‘common man’.

But, over the years, passing through the ages, the public of this Republic, looking for known or familiar addresses, was pushed, comfortably and consciously, to a fallacious state of mind of ‘being supreme to the cause of an India ruled by its political elite’.

The symbolism of a ‘high and mighty’ Republic of compromised public began right in 1947 with Jawaharlal Nehru’s epoch-defining midnight ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech.

We were born a troubled nation.

And though we had great many luminaries when we began, we faltered. In spite of their profound wisdom and good intent, some of the soldiers of the Indian Freedom Movement caused acidic damage to the concept of a true Republic, affecting the chances of ensuring a healthy democratic atmosphere for its public. And we continued to falter.

Until now!

It seems good days are coming.

The ‘Aam Aadmi’, the ubiquitous, quintessential, conspicuously insignificant common man was never so ‘uncommon’ for Indian politicians.

Until now, corruption, the arterial malaise of the Indian social weaving, had failed to become the central poll plank of any of the General Elections (Lok Sabha polls) of India barring few occasions when sentiments ran high like the Bofors Scam case and its impact on the electoral outcomes.

And corruption has become so ‘common manly’ in India that it has effectively pushed to the margins any remote chance of the common man being the central poll plank of elections beyond the centrality of the symbolism of a Republic of the common men (subservient to the democratic interests of the political elite).

But as an apolitically political party (the Aam Aadmi Party) has made a stunningly successful political electoral debut in Indian politics riding high on the poll planks of common man and corruption, and is threatening the other masters of the game in spite of its languishing political show on performing on governance in Delhi, the common man is getting all the attention that he has been missing for so many years, from the master, and from their entourage.

But, let’s don’t get high to let the symbolism befool us again. Let’s keep questioning.

So is it the time to say ‘until now’?

Is it the ‘high time’ or is it going to be just yet another daydream, a failed experiment, a futile

What are the developments that help us daydream it or push us hoping so?

Watch out..

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

COMMON MAN’S SYMBOLISM GETS NEW TOOLS (BEYOND MERE POLITICAL SYMBOLISM)

Continued/extended from
UNCOMMONNESS OF THE COMMON MAN IN THE POLL SEASON
https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/2014/02/18/uncommonness-of-the-common-man-in-the-poll-season/

The first two months of 2014 have been highly productive for the Indian democracy and the trends tell the drought of decades is going to end its inflicting spell.

The ‘Aam Aadmi’, the common man, had never gone beyond the ‘symbolic’ special status of being the fundamental constituent of the independent India. His special status was always limited to the days of elections and the short-lived phase of hallelujah only served the game of the political masters of the country.

So, what are the developments that help us daydream so or push us to think so?

The first two months of 2014 (though the foundation was led in the last month of 2013) have given the common man’s symbolism some vital tools to reflect on the centrality of the common man beyond the mere political symbolism.

These are:

  • The Common Man
  • The Broom
  • The Muffler
  • The Coughing Common Man
  • The Tea and the Tea-wallah
  • The Pepper Spray
  • So..how well these tools are playing out?

Watch out..

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

UNCOMMONNESS OF THE COMMON MAN IN THE POLL SEASON

India is a constitutionally proclaimed Republic where the basic unit of everything that goes into the concept of a democratic nation is the ‘common man’.

But, over the years, passing through the ages, the public of this Republic, looking for known or familiar addresses, was pushed, comfortably and consciously, to a fallacious state of mind of ‘being supreme to the cause of an India ruled by its political elite’.

The symbolism of a ‘high and mighty’ Republic of compromised public began right in 1947 with Jawaharlal Nehru’s epoch-defining midnight ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech.

We were born a troubled nation.

And though we had great many luminaries when we began, we faltered. In spite of their profound wisdom and good intent, some of the soldiers of the Indian Freedom Movement caused acidic damage to the concept of a true Republic, affecting the chances of ensuring a healthy democratic atmosphere for its public. And we continued to falter.

Until now!

It seems good days are coming.

The ‘Aam Aadmi’, the ubiquitous, quintessential, conspicuously insignificant common man was never so ‘uncommon’ for Indian politicians.

Until now, corruption, the arterial malaise of the Indian social weaving, had failed to become the central poll plank of any of the General Elections (Lok Sabha polls) of India barring few occasions when sentiments ran high like the Bofors Scam case and its impact on the electoral outcomes.

And corruption has become so ‘common manly’ in India that it has effectively pushed to the margins any remote chance of the common man being the central poll plank of elections beyond the centrality of the symbolism of a Republic of the common men (subservient to the democratic interests of the political elite).

But as an apolitically political party (the Aam Aadmi Party) has made a stunningly successful political electoral debut in Indian politics riding high on the poll planks of common man and corruption, and is threatening the other masters of the game in spite of its languishing political show on performing on governance in Delhi, the common man is getting all the attention that he has been missing for so many years, from the master, and from their entourage.

But, let’s don’t get high to let the symbolism befool us again. Let’s keep questioning.

So is it the time to say ‘until now’?

Is it the ‘high time’ or is it going to be just yet another daydream, a failed experiment, a futile

What are the developments that help us daydream it or push us hoping so?

Watch out..

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

AUSTERITY IS BACK: UPA SHAM YET AGAIN

AUSTERECTOMY=AUSTERITY VASECTOMIED

Heil! Heil! Heil!

Heil the Political Class of the world’s largest ‘demo’cracy!

Heil the politicians of India!

The sham is on display, yet again, in the trademark Indian politics way. After creating the situation to let the Indian Economy bleed, they are here again, to make rough patch-ups that don’t leave any effect.

And very skillfully, like they have messed up the Indian Economy in the last four years, they have kept their lavish lives out of the proposed austerity measures.

The proposed measures on travel restrictions, recruitment ban, guidelines for conferences, air travel, etc., target basically the government officials and the common man.

The political lords are out of its ambit to give them the free run during the election time. Anyway, they have always been beyond the reach of such measures. What applies for the common man doesn’t apply for them.

After all, it is their right to put the Indian Economy in trouble with measures like a wrongly timed food security act at a time when the prices are going up, Rupee is going down and the Economy is staring at yet another sluggish phase.

And one thing is particularly sham about these sham austerity measures.

These measures are announced regularly. In fact, announcing the cosmetic measures in the name of austerity has become a regular practice since the global economic crisis of 2008.

But no one knows how the measures are implemented. The country is never presented with any assessment report of such austerity measures adopted. Simply, because the measures are sham.

We come to know when the austerity guidelines are announced because that serves the purpose of propaganda.

We never come to know what happens to the guidelines post-announcement because that serves the purpose to maintain the veil over the sham.

Heil Austerectomy!

SOME WRITE-UPS IN THE AUSTERECTOMY SERIES

AUSTERECTOMY
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/06/austerectomy.html

AUSTERITY HO!
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/06/austerity-ho.html

AUSTERE MANMOHAN SPLURGES – COMFORTABLY, SELECTIVELY NUMB
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/09/austere-manmohan-splurges-comfortably.html

NO AUSTERITY PLEASE, OUR MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT ARE STUDYING HARD
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/08/no-austerity-please-our-members-of.html

AUSTERITY HO! THE ULTRA-RICH BUCCANEER ELITES
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/06/austerity-ho-ultra-rich-buccaneer-elites.html

NERO’S AUSTERITY
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/05/neros-austerity.html

3000 DAYS ABROAD IN TWO YEARS – UPA MINISTERS WORKING TOO HARD
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/10/3000-days-abroad-in-two-years-upa.html

3000 DAYS ABROAD IN TWO YEARS – OUR LORDS WOULD REMAIN OUR LORDS
http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/10/3000-days-abroad-in-two-years-our-lords.html

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/