Section 144 to be imposed on August 15; Opposition smells dynastic politics
“We are a tolerant and secular country,” Mr. Singh told the media. “Hurting other people’s sentiments for the sake of our celebrations has never been our nature. Keeping in line with our Ministry’s efforts to honour the sentiments of various sections of the society, we have decided to not indulge in unnecessary revelry on August 15. This will be our way of honouring Her Highness Shrimati Queen Elizabeth.”
When a reporter asked if there was a formal request from Buckingham Palace regarding this issue, Mr. Singh began to shake his head in one direction, then did a volte face and went in the other, and finally just gave up and decided to speak. “Prince William, who happens to be a close buddy of Prince Rahul’s, was on a friendly visit to India recently. He mentioned to Prince Rahul how emotionally attached his grandmother is to India. She still keeps the Kohinoor on her study table as a paper weight! Just imagine, she could have any big diamond from the mines of Africa, but she chose the Kohinoor!“Considering that the Indians are more miserable now than they were under the British, it’s illogical to call 15th August as Independence Day. It was just a mere transfer of power, like what happens every 5 years in ‘democratic’ India. Rahulji shared this story in the Congress Working Committee meeting which was presided, chaired, managed and attended by Shrimati Sonia Gandhiji. A unanimous decision in this regard was taken to honour and strengthen the bond between the two monarchies.”
He added: “The Queen has been a great ruler. In fact, the entire British rule was a blessing in disguise as propounded by our Prime Minister during his visit to Oxford University. Not celebrating the Independence Day will be our small token of love towards the great monarch whose family has stood for strong democratic values for centuries.”
“Does that mean the PM will not address the country from the ramparts of Red Fort this year?” asked a reporter.
Mr. Singh shook his head this time and said, “No, he will not. I request everyone to not indulge in any kind of revelry as Section 144 will be imposed throughout the country, except Kashmir, to prevent any unwanted incidents. We have also asked Salman Khan to promote his upcoming film Ek Tha Tiger—which is releasing on 15th August—as an ‘Eid’ release instead of an ‘Independence Day’ release.”
There’s more in the pipeline. “Although the official Satyamev Jayate season is over, we have requested a special episode on 11th August to expose how pesticides and colours are used in the jalebis sold on Independence Day, and how the money that can be used for upliftment of poor is wasted on this day. Aamir has agreed to promote ‘Sharbat Swatantrata Divas’ as an alternative to unnecessary display of wealth and might. After making India a cartoon- and painting-free nation, we hope that this latest initiative will also be a resounding success,” finished Mr. Singh with a flourish.
Political reactions: The opposition NDA was up in arms against this “draconian” measure. “This is another example of dynastic politics. Only a Queen can understand the feelings of another Queen,” said one of their leaders. Narendra Modi, conversely, made a startling revelation: “This is another sorry attempt to save Manmohan Singh. Last year, it was discovered that he was lip-syncing at Red Fort while Sonia Gandhi delivered the speech in Hindi, albeit with help from a voice modulation software. I request everyone to tune in to ETV Gujarat on 15th August and hear their future PM who actually SPEAKS.”
Nitish Kumar appeared all confused when asked about this development. While he didn’t support UPA’s decision, he said he didn’t want to appear “communal” by opposing it and standing on the same side as Narendra Modi. With much coaxing, he added, “Whatever they do, secularism must be upheld.”
Outside India: Internationally, like in most cases, this decision of the Indian Government has garnered little response. While 52% of Americans believe India is still a colony of Britain, 31% think the reference was to Red Indians, who surely shouldn’t celebrate Independence Day. The remainder wants Obama to bomb India and protect their jobs from being Bangalored.
Pakistan, which was nowhere in the picture, has welcomed this decision. Rehman Malik, the Inferior Minister of Pakistan, said, “This is a great step towards normalization of bilateral relations between the two superpowers of Asia. The ice was thawed when India officially decided to not celebrate the 1971 and Kargil War victories. This initiative will bring us even closer. The Reserve Bank of Pakistan has decided to honour the long standing ties between the two countries by printing Rs 100, 500 and 1000 notes in Pakistani currency with pictures of Manmohan Singh hugging Zardari.”
Along with this, Pakistan has unilaterally decided to “take back” Veena Malik, even though they still maintain that she isn’t a state sponsored terrorist sent to terrorize India with her acting skills and “drop-dead” looks.
The UK’s reaction: The office of Queen Elizabeth II welcomed this long overdue decision. As a token of appreciation, the Queen has agreed to let Manmohan Singh touch the Kohinoor with gloved hands when he visits Britain next.
Team Anna: Arvind Kejriwal has assured that Anna Hazare will go on a fast against this decision. Baba Ramdev has declared that he will hoist the tricolour at his ashram no matter what. Shahi Imam Bukhari is still wondering if this decision is in any way against the minorities. The common man? He is still discussing if petrol prices will fall by another 7 paise after being raised 7 rupees.