Monday, 23 October 2017

Dubious Deities

If you go to the Aadhar centre in Delhi,
You'll see, on the board where UID has anointed itself,
That the department of electronics and information technology
Has fondly acronymed itself "DeitY",
And they aren't entirely off the mark.
Queues at the centre
That wait for Godot
With nowhere else to go to
Will attest to the fact.
Denied pensioners
Losing-their-pay-daily wage labourers
Made-to-return-seven-times householders . . .
All will confirm
That they are up against the wrath of a deity,
Though they had done nothing to invite it,
Whose mysterious workings they know nothing of
But whose shrine they've to keep visiting, lining up in the wee hours of the morning,
Where they'll submit their prayers
But can never be sure of a hearing.
They know their deity like Shakespeare knew his:
"As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods,
They kill us for their sport."


First published in Women's Watch, 2017.


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