Some days ago, I read a news item in Mumbai Mirror entitled 'Shiv Sena Kerala Mandal'.It intrigued me, my imagination ran wild and some of these are being put to paper.
What gave birth to this strange combination? Is it opportunism, a concoction because of the environment or just a convenient marriage? The Shiv Sena, I guess, has a clear agenda compelled by the forthcoming assembly and parliamentary elections, and the sibling rivalry with Raj Thackeray. The Keralites, as I have known them, are an enterprising and enigmatic lot. It is said of the Keralites, Sardars and the Marwaris that there is no place on earth where one cannot find them. Back to our Keralite brethren and their omnipresence, I have come across a lot of interesting stories.
Neil Armstrong descended on the moon and was heartily welcomed by (you know whom) with the question 'Cha ya veno ?' - (do you want tea?). During my visit to Ludhiana, I came across a shop - 'Manikandan Tyre Service'. I have heard that the Sheikhs in Midle East/ UAE are adept in speaking Malayalam, and it is only a question of time when it will be declared the official language. The icing on the cake, of course, was when Misbah ul Haq spooned the famous twenty - twenty overs catch behind the keeper, and we, once again, saw the 'Malayalee presence or omnipresence'. It was our own Sreesanth who gobbled up the catch and brought smiles, cheers and joy to our countrymen.
Yes, they are a dynamic and enterprising lot, who seek opportunities and very well know which side of their bread is buttered. What better confirmation can there be to 'Darwins Theory of the Survival of the Fittest'- with the ubiquitous Keralites claiming the honour. The sad part is that the whole of their dynamism seems lost in their own hinterland, where we see their dynamism in the form of hartals and bandhs, critiquing politicians, and gulping innumerable cups of tea reading the newspapers end to end.
Now having said that, it is not all surprising that the Keralites embraced the Shiv Sena in Thane, Maharashtra. I hope this marriage is consummated well, and to quote Mills and Boons, wish 'they live happily ever after'. What, however, left a lasting impression on my mind was what Shreekumaran Nair, Secretary of the Malayalee Samajam had to say. He said that the Keralites could never forget the sacrifices rendered by the Late Shri. Anand Dighe , and it was in his memory that they had joined the Shiv Sena. I have personally heard a lot of late Anand Dighe, and his innumerable sacrifices and contributions to the cause of the common man. Irrespective of caste, creed or religion, people revered and respected him. It was often said of Dighe Saab that whoever went to him returned with a patient hearing, and resolution of their problems. When he breathed his last, there was a sea of mourners, vocalising the selflessness of Dighe Saab, and his endearing and helpful nature.
That the Keralites joined the Shiv Sena is a testimony to the fact that good work and selfless leadership is never forgotten. Let this country be blessed with more such great leaders.
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