Monday, June 05, 2006

The common man's reservations about Reservation

The term is Special Reservation. SPECIAL Reservation.

For most of my time on this planet, I've understood 'Special' as being an entity, that is slightly out of the ordinary. And by logical progression, an adjective. that does not get conferred on every second object in the immediate vicinity.

After all this time, dear Mr. Arjun Singh tells me that this infact, is a mistaken notion. The 'Special' category can indeed be as massive as 50%, he declares. Now, if he means that 50% of this country's population is deserving of the 'special' tag, then I believe there's something seriously wrong with his understanding of the word.

Lalu might counter saying that a massive percentage of the seats on his trains, much higher than 50%, are 'specially' reserved. In that case, I'd like to point out, the reservation is generally dished out not to the poorer, but to the richer.

I accede that there're classes in India who do need the help. Classes that might never be able to aspire to greater objectives, if the help is not given. And I also accede that these classes exist as more than just 'one here and one there' quantities.

But the point is, there's a line that needs to be drawn somewhere. The Deprived must be helped, buy surely not by belittling and making a mockery of the Deserving.

Increasing the number of seats is not a solution. It will only mean that the number of the sub standard will increase by as much. And that is exactly what everyone's protesting against - increase in the non-saleable quantity and subsequent decrease in the overall saleable quality.
My conversation with a man who falls into 'The blessed' category

Me: So bhaai, what do you think about the issue of the Reservation?
He: Woh kya hota hai Saab?
Me: Arrey Reservation bole to Arakshan. Aaj kal kitni charcha ho rahi hai uspe!
He: Arrey Babu, hum gareeb log hai, hame isse kya matlab. Arakshan karne ke paise kahaan se laaye? Hum to hamesha biwi-bachcho ke saath 'General' dabbe me hi safar karte hai!

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