Thursday, 22 March 2007


Can there be any two thoughts on this – who should we spare, the child or the stray dog?
With the stray dog menace rising steadily, and incidents of attacked children numbing the public mind, this is something that has to be resolved at once.

A four-year-old schoolgirl was attacked and killed by stray dogs in Coimbatore, about a couple of months ago; and more recently stray dogs have killed children in Bangalore.
In the suburbs of Chennai too, stray dogs are proving to be a menace, and there are apprehensions that tragedies similar to the ones in Bangalore and Coimbatore may occur here.

Animal lovers and activists can protest all they want, but surely the life of one child or person is more important than the protection of stray dogs that pose so much danger!
Definitely the stray dog menace should be curbed, and if they have to be put to sleep, so be it.
Do we not dole out capital punishment to murderers? Are dogs special?

Will the vociferous activists, pleading for humane treatment of the strays, take some home and look after them?
It is easy to say bring them under the anti rabies vaccination and birth control programmes.
Is this a practical or practicable solution in a country like ours, where medical treatment and preventive programmes are not available to so many human beings?
This is a country where culturally the dog is an animal to be scorned. We are not like the affluent (and mostly lonely) Americans who take their pet dogs out to walk, armed with a poop shovel and cover.

The problem has to be faced and solved rationally with a cool head, and decisions come to – is it to be the human being or the dog?


Saturday, 17 March 2007

A Hurley burly wedding

I just can’t understand it.

A never before heard of businessman, Arun Nayar, and an over the hill British actress, Elizabeth Hurley, decide to get married.
So what is the excitement about? The media, both print and electronic, just doesn't seem to have enough of it
Neither is she at 42 a young nubile bride, (though she is undeniably beautiful) nor he a dashing young bridegroom.
The actress has been through more than one connection (to use a euphemism), and the businessman, too, must have had his share. Oh yes, one learns that he was married to an Italian model. . . though to be fair, since he hasn’t been in the limelight as much as the actress, his activities on that front may not have commanded much attention.
Not only have they been through previous marriages, but they got married in England just recently to one another.
Now they come to India and get married all over again in Jodhpur in a colorful ceremony glittering with festivities, with an unbefitting display of opulence.

Sure, private lives are private, and let anyone marry whomever, whenever, however, anywhere.
It is the unwarranted attention and importance given by the relentless media to our sensation hungry public that amazes and puzzles me.
Inappropriate occasions given incongruous attention.
The media ladles it out, and the public laps it up.

It is a vicious circle of the media and the public – they want it, we give it – they give it, we take it.
When and where does it stop?