Who Was To Blame, A Vikram Betaal Story
Who Was To Blame, A Vikram Betaal Story
Once a biker hit a pot hole on the road and got thrown on the horn of a stray cow. Met with instant death. Biker was wearing helmet, had a license and no record of any traffic related offense. Biker was a Swiggy delivery executive and had a delivery to make. A passer-by on alert got to capture this fatal and dramatic action in his video and uploaded in the social media and instantly the video went viral. A pious judge saw it after his morning prayers and decided to take up the case as a PIL. Just yesterday his car too bumped at a pot hole and as a result judge was left with a severe back pain. He was seething with rage with the municipality and then he came across the video.
A very ambitious and inquisitive young journalist too saw this and quickly drove to the scene of the accident. He enquired with the shops and managed to get the address of the deceased biker. There was a sob and shocking story waiting for him. The biker’s mother when she heard of the accident and biker’s death had a cardiac arrest and died on the way to the hospital leaving orphaning her sixteen-year teenager. The journalist put up the story in the front page as the whole incident and the way of death shocked the senses.
The journalist traced the owner and smelt a smashing hit of a sequel when he learnt that the owner was a Muslim. Hell broke loose when the journalist published the sequel. A militant Hindu outfit ransacked the Muslim’s shop and lynched him alleging that he was rearing cows for its slaughter.
In a tit for tat reaction a right-wing Muslim organisation took a procession to the Police Commissioner’s office and submitted a memorandum demanding an enquiry into the incident.
The micro-finance lender hearing of the biker’s death in a swift but a heartless move seized the residential property as the biker had a pending loan and was defaulting on payment. The journalist managed to cover this too as the sister of the biker made a distress call to him. With the report catching the attention of the same judge who had taken a PIL case of the biker’s death put a stay on the micro-lender’s seizure of the property.
When the hearing came up the judge ordered the municipality to pay an immediate compensation of five lakh rupees to the surviving teenager pending the case disposal. The Municipality took up the case to the High court litigating the judge’s decision.
The teenage girl felt a great obligation to the journalist and revealed that she and her brother were bastard children and their father was actually the home minister. A DNA test could confirm the truth. The journalist now had a time bomb in his hands and drove straight to the home of the opposition leader of the state. The leader gave him a suitcase full of money and asked the journalists to take safe custody of the girl.
That day in the assembly the opposition leader made this sensational allegation of home minister being the father of the deceased biker and demanded the resignation of the home minister. The home minister got shocked as to how his well-kept secret got light of public. He rang up a supari to finish off the girl. In the meantime, the entire opposition walked out in protest.
The high command of the ruling party which promised Ram Rajya found the situation morally repugnant and asked the home minister to resign. But the home minister threatened to reveal skeletons from the cup-board of the chief minister. The chief minister assured him that it would be only a temporary break and he would constitute a special investigation team to do a cursory enquiry and acquit him. Thereafter he would reinstate him in the ministry.
Both the militant groups belonging to the Hindu and Muslim decided to go on the aggressive leading to a communal cauldron on the boil as no result was forthcoming of the investigation. It led to a communal clash in Shivajinagar a predominant Muslim locality. There was arson and looting and a few people died in the communal clash.
The teen age girl who got sent away to the neighbouring state where the journalists uncle lived in a rural town. She felt safe as nobody knew her. But the social media caught up to her. She found horrendous and scandalous post in the social media about her mother and soon about her as well. They had castigated her mother as a whore and many in the social media posted message soliciting the girl as well. She could not bear it any more and committed suicide by consuming a pesticide as her custodian was an agriculturist.
The journalists broke the news once again and added to the prevailing tension in the city and the state as well. He was found dead on account of allegedly a hit and run accident on the ring road but citizens didn’t believe it was an accident.
Communal riots flared up as the law and order worsened since ordinary citizens took to protesting the suicide of the girl and the journalist as well. Debates raged in the national media, both the houses and in the social media about the degeneration of governance in the state, moral values with allegations and counter allegations by the ruling party and the opposition.
Suddenly Betaal who was narrating the story to Vikramaditya found the king had collapsed on to the ground. Betaal sprinkled some water and King came to conscious. He said to Betaal “I am an eleventh century king and who was never exposed to such a story. My head reeled under the complexity of what you narrated.
Betaal said “oh! King you are giving up even before I asked you the customary question.”
King replied “like I said it is too complex for me. Only person who can possibly address is one who calls himself Sadguru. I read one of his explanations as to why breast milk in the right and left are different in case of a mother who has given birth to boy and a girl as twins. Oh dear! What an explanation. I am nothing compared to his wisdom.”
Betaal could not suppress the laughter and said “even in defeat you have preserved your sense of humour. Therefore, I forgive you this time and your head shall not burst into one thousand pieces.” But I advise you to visit Bharata and spend some quality time learning the complexities of the country in the twenty-first century. Whether you like it or not your stories continue to charm people and you will have to continue to resolve complexities.
King thanked Betaal for sparing his life. It is believed King Vikramaditya has descended upon Bharata and trying to understand the complexities of the modern Bharata.
For the readers who would want to know what was the question Betaal had in mind. It was to ask the King “who deserves the blame in the story for so many deaths.”
Post script: As for the current situation home minister did resign and has been found innocent subsequently by a SIT enquiry. The CM continued to mis-govern the state. Many more pot hole deaths continued to occur in the city. The teen-age girl and the journalist were long forgotten. Justice in general eludes the citizens.