An open letter to Pritish Nandy

I read this last week I guess and I obviously oppose most of what Nandy says. He has in fact, never managed to impress me. I fail to understand the audacity with which jots down his opinion most of which can be debated by someone as novice as me.
You can read his article here

An Open Letter to Pritish Nandy

Dear Mr. Nandy,

Welcome to the freest city in the world. Welcome to Mumbai. I simply love it.

You can't smoke in public places. I understand how that might be an inconvenience to you. I don't like the rule too. After all, why would I want to miss my second hand smoke of the day? I cant buy alcohol below the age of 18. Ah, how I wish my son manages to get his hands on a bottle of Absolut Vodka on his 13th bday. Yes, their are no strip clubs here. I would like to pay the cover charge for every man who turns up to watch girls dance Kathakali (you and your buddies included)

Yes, we would like to let our chefs sleep after 11 (do you mind?) Arent you the same people who talk about quality of life? And yes, if you are 17, you are not an adult, so it is technically rape. I think you can marry at 14 in one of those Eastern European countries. You are free to find your soulmate there.

Our Ministers do get preferential treatment at the queue. Why is that wrong again? Arent you the same people who got pissed off when APJ kalam was frisked at a US airport? You had a problem with even SRK being frisked, like he was some kinda God. And now, you want stricter rules for ministers just coz its too much waiting time for you?

Gun licences? Really? What is Mumbai? A black neighbourhood in New York? How many times have you been threatened with a Gun? Zero? That is coz we dont give out gun licences to idiots like you.

Yes, we are a socialist country. We charge the rich and have the NREGA for the poor. The idea is, if you have enough money to spend 5000 rupees on a meal (most people in Mumbai earn less than that a month), you should have no problem with giving 1000 to the Government, so that on they can work on more schemes for the poor. We are probably the best example of socialism (on paper, at least)

Yes, there is a Hindu-Muslim thing. Remember 1992, asshole? That kinda thing leaves scars that can't be healed even with time. And the next time on your trip to one of the western countries, leave the confines of your corporate sponsored 5 star stay and visit one of the ghettos. Only White trash lives in black/turkish populated areas. And only the best of the black community can afford to live in the white areas (Rem Chris Rock, anyone?)

Yes, all dirty stuff is off the air. I know, you must miss the programming on F TV but such is life.. grow up, okay? Customs will demand duty on goods more than 26k. If you want to have a dollar based limit, how about you smuggle goods in the US? I would like to see what they do to your sorry ass there...

And stop cribbing about some sorry cop who interrupted your party once. You were having coke or some other drug there anyway. Good for you. You do need some policing. If you think otherwise, stop being such a wuss and don't run to you friends in media to help you with a bully. Be a man and stand up to him the next time you meet him.

Footpaths havent vanished. Only, we have 5 times more people than NY does, and that is like the so-called busiest city on the planet. NOT. With so many people around, you just cant see it.

Yes, we don't have open air cafes. The fact that there is a whole beach line where you can walk any time of the night, obviously doesnt cut it... The stars can't be seen because your head is too far up your ass. The sparrows are gone? If you live in the cozy confines of Kurla, yes they are... If you ever happen to come north of Powai, I will show you a bird sanctuary. That is, if you snobbish bastards have started calling the best part of your city as your city yet.

Now, let a real Mumbaikar, someone who hasnt lived south of Mahim, someone who has travelled by trains, hanging on for dear life, someone who walked 22 kms to get home on the night of 26th July, someone who sweats in the heat and rejoices when the first rains hit the city, tell you why this is the awesomest place in the world.

You can leave at 3 in the night and you won't be mugged. You can walk/drive/take a train to wherever you want and get something to eat. People will try to maintain lane discipline (relative concept to India). People dont honk unnecessarily. (again, relative to all eastern countries). The traffic policeman will leave you even if you break the signal, if you try to speak in Marathi, even if you are a north India. You can get a chai for Rs.5 at the tea stall, and at Rs. 500 at the Taj President. You choose where you want to go.

Life is nothing is it's not freedom. But don't ask freedom to drink at 15 or smoke or piss on the wall. Grow up and grow a pair.

Mumbai is a lot more than you make it sound to be.

Welcome to Mumbai. I simply love it.

yours humbly,
A Mumbaikar
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