Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Dog on the Beach

The following drama is the brainchild of Mr. Tejas Perumanna (a.k.a Mr. Mohandas), a brilliant teacher, artist, director, dramatist, magician and a wonderful human being. The original script was in Malayalam which has been adapted into English with permission. Even though it won’t have the magic of the original, we try to present the message – the message we all need to learn.

The idea to the following skit came forward during the beginning of 2005 when news clippings showed mass graves in which people were buried all together due to the catastrophic tsunami of December 26, 2004. The following scene has such a mass grave, covered yet so very shallow. The rest is for all of you to make out…


Bodies strewn around. A stench so unbearable that you need to walk through it with your nose covered. A dog eating flesh of humans. An old man walks in and looks around.

Man: (startled) You filthy dog! What do you think you are doing? How dare you eat the flesh of humans?

Dog: (laughing) You call them humans? Why do you call them human? Why oh why?

Man: What do you mean u dirty scavenger?

Dog: Why do you ask me? Ask yourself. Are you not human?

Man: What have we not done for the welfare of others? What have we humans not achieved?

Dog: Oh you’ve achieved a lot! A Lot! Welfare - schelfare! Think back. Look at how you are now and how u were then –


4 people lined on the left hand side of the stage. The dog changes its mask and puts on a black one. And then goes towards the people on the left hand side of the stage.

Dog: (holds one hand up and shouts) Tell me my brothers. Why have we gathered here?

L group: (in chorus) To protect our relegion.

Dog: What is our aim?

L group: Create unrest till the land is ours

Dog: And how shall we do that?

L group: We shall kill them others for the sake of our people.

Dog: Then go! Leave no one! Kill them all! Go!

The stage clears as everyone except the dog runs out


4 people lined on the right hand side of the stage. The dog changes its mask and puts on a red one. And then goes towards the people on the right hand side of the stage.

Dog: My people, them others threaten us! We need to react!

R group: Indeed we will

Dog: We’ve had enough of the atrocities!

R group: More than enough!

Dog: How shall we suppress them?

R group: We shall kill them for the sake of our people!

Dog: Then go! Let them be punished!! Kill them all! Go!

The stage clears as everyone except the dog runs out

(Scene 4)

Dog comes forward and changes the mask again. The two groups clash behind the dog. The dog laughs while the people behind him start killing each other until no one is left alive

(Scene 5)

Back to present. The old man walks up to the dog and the dog is still laughing.

Dog: So, do you remember now?

Man: Yes I remember. I remember everything

Dog: And you call them humans?

Man: No! No! They’re worse than…

Dog: Ah yes! Then, they were waiting to get at each others necks. Now look, how peaceful they are, all warm and cuddled up. No caste, no creed, no religion, no life.

Man: (holding the collar of one of the dead bodies lying on the ground) Why did you do this? Why? Why?

Dog: No use crying now and shouting to lifeless souls. Nature has itself taken them away. Do your change now, lest you don’t want to cry later. Now let me get back to where I was.

(Dog starts eating on the human flesh again. The old man walks forward. Looks up at the sky)

Man: (puts both his hands on in the air) Yes, we’ve done wrong! Yes, we’ve sinned! Forgive us, oh Lord!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Waking up to the call

i was unearthing my past digital records and i came across this essay, once again for some assignment most probably.

“Life is a festival only to the wise. Seen from the nook and chimney side of prudence, it wears a ragged and dangerous front.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Humanity is what man requires from the society, but most of the time he is denied of it. The long history of man from the barbaric age to the present modern world is a history of how evil won over good, and how evil wishes and actions got the better of peace loving people. Crime has thrived from the days of Adam and Eve. Even today it is as conscious as it was then. And the levels of crime have also increased manifold. It is just not crime relating to humanity. There are crimes aimed at technology, country, animals and even nature. And what do we do about it? Just talk, let other people know about it, while crime has a steady climb. It’s high time we reacted. If we do nothing about it, then who knows, crime might rule over us pretty soon, like the nightmarish democracy of the fictional Gotham City. The time is now and the action is immediate.

So what can the common man like us do about it? Well for starters, we need to clear the world of the evil it has at the moment, and then see to it that it does not resurrect itself. And this needs to begin from the bottom level of society, maybe somewhere around the community level. We could have less of moral policing and more of criminal policing. Instead of seeing what culture is being followed or who is doing what, one has to see that other anti-social elements that function in the shadow of such availabilities don’t escape. One can have public – police interactions at least once a week. They can suggest to each other as to how the place can be made safer. Sometimes people are scared to report anything to the police with the question as to whether they will be targeted by the criminals for just opening their mouths. So for such informants, the police needs to create enough anonymity, so that anyone can call in to report any crime without fear. Community policing is another ideal manner to tackle this problem. This can lessen the burden on the police, as well as give the satisfaction to the public that there is at least someone whom they know around them to protect them. Thinking of ideas, there are more than a million at hand. But those lie in the minds of the public out there. More of awareness classes to bring forward people into giving out new ideas should also be conducted.

But without personal involvement we may not be able to reach anywhere, because as Pubillius Syrus, the Latin writer once said – “You yourself are guilty of a crime when you don’t punish a crime”. So strap up some courage, and say no to crime and criminals. This provides us with a safer future and a better society.

Friday, November 19, 2010

A Letter

I wrote this long back i guess. Don't know when it was or for whom. One of those days when the teacher asked you to write an essay is my closest guess. ;)

Dear Keith,

It’s been long since I heard from you. Actually pretty much a very long time. So how are you doing there? I heard that you are coming down to India this fall, for your higher studies. So that’s what this letter is mainly going to contain. I have to tell you what you can expect from here. It’s not your first time here I guess. But how old were you when you visited this place? Five, six? Well leave that, let me tell you a little about the wonder that is India.

Nowadays, it’s not the India of the books of the old days that you get to see. India is far from my dreams. Even though I live down in a village, all is changed and pretty much all modernity has crept into everyone’s life. But certain problems still remain as it has been since long back. Like drinking water, drainage and some roads here and there. Otherwise this is pretty much like any other country. You have fields full of working people, and at the same time high storey buildings with white collar jobs. You have bullock carts on the road, and at the same time you have the high end cars rolling way faster than them. One can find a lot of contrasting features once you land in India. That is what makes this a wonderful place to live in. For a feel of the old in the new, India can do more than wonders into letting you get into that feeling. Maybe you might find the stench of the gutters unbearable, but at the same time you cannot forget the fact as to how many people live in this small sub continent – being the second most populous country in the world. The amenities may not be sometimes up to the standards, but the love of the people at hand is rather immense and the support you get from them can forward you anywhere in the world.

I have been trying to give you a rather slim picture of India in these few words. Hope you have got a better understanding about the country of the Akbar’s, Asoka’s, Mahatma’s, Tata’s, Tendulkar’s and so many more. Looking forward to seeing you at the earliest, say my hi to everyone out there and take care.

Saying so
Your best friend

Monday, August 30, 2010

I am a Muslim!

i am a muslim. kill me and call it collateral damage. imprison me and call it securty measure. exile my people en masse and call it new middle east. rob my resources, invade my land, alter my leadership and call it democracy. but still we say assalamu alaikum, peace be upon you.

Q: I believe that d moment u associate ur self with religion not as righteousness bt as sth that a scripture says, there's gonna b a problem. n more so when u go on generalising as such. d so called religion has 2 change according 2 times n if it sticks at 1 point of time, m sure u trying 2 defy d greatest truth n reality of nature: Change. Islam's greatest strength is its fundamentalism n its greatest weakness is also fundamentalism (excuse me fr using dis word). Next, wt u call 'ur land' is bound 2 raise concerns. because v Indians believe in d concept of Earth as mother. coz demographically Muslims r more in middle east, it can't b ur land.
Agreed, 1 should b concerned about killings of fellow human beings. Agreed, evry 1 should work fr real democracy, violation of human rights n religious freedom of course. Agreed, 1 ll b naturally more concerned abt his fellow community members. Bt 2 base d whole logic on sth inside d dimensions of 1 religion doesn't make u a rational human being either.
Lastly: d fundamentalist Muslims r d greatest enemies of Islam. I would love to believe that Akbar n not Aurangzeb b d role model of every Muslim.
India was ruled by all sorts of invaders bt d nation survived.Bombs, can't kill a nation or a religion. Middle East is not facing an existential crisis from outside bt from inside. Islam was never under scrutiny or doubt ever, more than today. And that's not coz US army is sending its drones in Afghanistan n Iraq mountains bt coz Muslims hv been behaving more irresponsibly as fellow human being than ever.
I am sure many of my argument can b countered with good logic. Bt 2 logically blame others fr every wrong that happens 2 u, my friend, is not a good way 2 reform urself.

A: at first, i was expressing solidarity with a particular sentiment rather than trying to enforce or rather generalize the religion as such...

i agree with the fact that religion needs to adjust over the time, but i ask of you again - to what extent?

"coz demographically Muslims r more in middle east, it can't b ur land" - this is a statement way beyond the truth... south asia has almost around three times the number of muslims u can find in the middle east and north africa combined... so i donno where you got that statement from?

you talked about india being invaded by various nations... true... how long did the mughals rule? there is always a beginning, a middle and an end... think about it... and this is as much my country as it is of anybody else in India!

when a muslim is convicted of doing something wrong, he is straightaway branded an islamic fundamentalist... why is it that no other religion is targeted in such a manner... why aren't they called christian killers or hindu terrorists or the thousand and one associations that u can make? why is it always that for the cause of some brainless shithole, the religion of islam need take the beating? why can't we force it out of our vocabularies... why brand an entire religion for the deeds of a few? why is it that americans are not allowing a masjid to be built next to ground zero? it is an inherent paranoia of branding every muslim a terrorist... and instead of making them realize that islam is a religion of peace and understanding, you again instill fear in them... i beg you to understand the religion better and not come to conclusions about it from what you hear from others...

and for another i never mentioned a US or an afghanistan or which land or whatever... its easy to defend yourself when you don't have the hate of the world thrust into your eyes... try being in our shoes for a while...

and when have we blamed others? u seemed to have again missed out on the end line - may peace be upon you (assalamu alaikum)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

i am i

I am the chalk
In the hot chocolate

The day isn't over
But i am wasted

The wind ain't cold
You burn forever

Out of bounds
Time's a joke

Freedom the call
By the noose hung

You lie
I am i

You care not know more!