Sunday, 21 August 2011

Monorail? Trivandrum? Did you just wink, Mr. CM?

“Throw them a bone, willya? Let them chew on it for a while”. This was the thought that passed through my mind when I saw the news of “monorail” for Trivandrum. It was a continuation of the institutionalized neglect of this place that has been the norm for quite some time now, regardless of the political hue of the ruling setup. Perhaps they felt a little pity after some newspapers highlighted the pittance allotted to God’s Own Capital by MANI (or da man who controls the ‘munee).
There are quite a few outsiders who consider “Pappanavan’s folks as scoundrels”. There is no point in fighting such prejudices. I personally feel that the percentage of douchebags here is more or less the same as in any other place. In fact, the majority appear to be rather na├»ve, considering the way they trust the government and their drivel.

Regarding this monorail melodrama - if you go back in time, E Sreedharan, “the man who invented rail travel”, and his company did a study and found that the city didn’t need a metro (didn’t “deserve” a metro). It was all the city’s fault. It had to go and settle itself into undulating terrains, with curves and hills and holes and what not, which didn't meet the specifications of his invention. How can a city like that even think of mass transit? He said "No", and everyone agreed. He decreed, “Let them have a MEMU,” and that became a meme with the government and the people. And that was it, even though the existing railway track mostly skirts the city and traverses a mere 2 or 3 kilometres of the populated areas.

In the meantime, we had a few MPs, with no connection whatsoever to the city, foisted on us by the two political groups, the latest being the glam-boy who was going to wave his magic wand and make Trivandrum a global city. We all fell hook, line and sinker for him. From the look of it, by the time he is through we will become objects of global ridicule. The guy bats for Kochi, bowls for Gujaratis and "feels" for Kashmiris, but is a spectator when it comes to Trivandrum. Till a few months ago the ruling left front was the problem. Now, he has his buddies in power. So, ideally things should get better, move faster, etc. Maybe it did.  He probably nudged the CM, after the meaty portions were passed around to everybody else, and said “Throw them a bone, willya? Let those bozos chew on it for a while”.

* Personally, I am not a big fan of monorail. The pillars and the elevated tracks will be one big eyesore defacing the city. Especially in places like ours, those pillars and the space beneath will end up being used for sticking posters as well as for peeing, pooping, puking and fornicating.