I speak for myself when I say that I grieved for my chocolate brown Labrador, Mishti, when he left me in February, 2007, much more than I have done for many humans. However, when I say I speak for myself, that is strictly not correct – tens of millions of people all over this planet would have empathised and sympathised with me. I soon found out that all my friends who had met this wonderful creature shared my sorrow; he had clearly left a deep imprint on them in the brief span of a few months during which he stayed with me. I am still hurting.
Therefore, I find the purported outrage of assorted humans like Javed Akhtar, Digvijay Singh et al about Narendra Modi’s ‘puppy’s death’ remark bizarre and ersatz, even by the lamentable standards of the secularist storm-troopers. Unless, of course, they subscribe to the policy that anything is allowed in their scorched-earth campaign against NM. If so, this is a sign of desperation in the Congress-UPA war room.
To get back to Messrs Akhtar and Singh. In this essay, I will occasionally be addressing them directly. I confess I do not subscribe totally to the views of George Orwell in Animal Farm that two legs are bad and four legs are better. Some four-legged creatures are quite avoidable as far as I am concerned — cats, for example. And certainly, tigers, lions, leopards etc. On this last category, I am sure the two of you and I will be on the same page (a phrase much used and abused these days by the Capital’s glitterati, including a certain Manish Tiwari in your camp).
I am much more in sympathy with the views of the great French philosopher, the inimitable Duc de Rochefoucauld. His epic dictum, “The more I see of human beings, the more I love my dogs.” Is forever etched in my mind and heart. And every time the two of you open your mouth, I utter a hosanna in memory of the wise man from Gaul.
By this time, you will be getting the gist of what I am saying. Yes, you are right. I am saying that a departure of a puppy or a dog, whether by accident or illness or natural causes is infinitely sadder for me than the passing away of many two-legged creatures. There are innumerable reasons for this. I will start with an apocryphal account of why this is so.
Some readers will be au fait with the story of the hotel manager who responded to a potential client with words like these: “In all the years I have run my hotel, I have never had a dog steal towels, bedclothes etc. I have never evicted a dog for being drunk and disorderly and I have never experienced a dog running away from a hotel bill. Therefore, sir, your dog is most welcome at my establishment. If he vouches for you, you are welcome too.”
To come to weightier issues, as the Delhi babus would say, it is self-evident that a dog would not stab his human partner or betray his human household in the same way as you two regularly do to your motherland. For example, when you publicly endorsed an utterly vile and cretinous book that propagates the thesis that the 26/11 attacks were the handiwork of the RSS and assorted ‘Hindu-Judaic’ forces. For heaven’s sake, are there no depths that you will not plumb, or lows that you will not stoop to?
Of the two, I find Javed Akhtar the more disingenuous and, therefore, more disagreeable. He has made a fine art of his taqqiya by passing himself off as an atheist when he is nothing of the sort. In fact, if he dares to make this atheist gobbledygook claim in the various countries that he professes to admire, he will certainly be deprived of vital parts of his anatomy. He and his wife have made a profession from their so-called secularism and done very well out of it too. Made a Parliament seat a family sinecure. Mind you, Javed babu: I have to hand it to you. You have a certain gravitas and posture that enables you to peddle your ideology quite successfully under a ‘false flag’ strategy.
Now, Digvijay Singh is in a different league altogether. The man is so perverse that even his party is fed up with him. His incessant degeneracy and buffoonery are now rebounding. His mentors in 24 Akbar Road and 10 Janpath are clearly worried that this fellow will cost them heavily at the hustings in 2014. At least, Manish Tiwari’s ‘holistic approach’ garbage does not offend people as egregiously as Digvijay’s outbursts do. Recently, one of the hacks in a portal sympathetic to Digvijay’s cabal did quite a thorough hatchet job on him. This, surely, needed a green light from the top.
Now, pups and dogs will not do the things that Digvijay does so regularly and shamelessly. They will not lead the enemies of their human family into the family house through an unguarded rear entrance. They will not exploit the internal differences in their family home for the benefit of persons who do not wish them well. These are such cardinal principles for dogs that they do not have to be trained in them. We have to teach dogs toilet habits at the most. Not loyalty and devotion. The last two traits are ingrained in the canine DNA.
Dogs have also never committed genocide of their fellow creatures. Turf wars, they have, but not mass murders of their sisters, brothers and pups. In canine history, we will never find the parallels of the massacres unleashed by the Mahmud of Ghaznis, Baburs, Tughlaqs and Aurangzebs of the world. Or the genocide of the Armenians by the Ottoman Turks or of Jews and Slavs by German Nazis.
Because of these extremely important and relevant reasons, I see red when some people refer to Digvijay Singh, by the moniker ‘Dogvijay’. I have debarred and prohibited these friends and associates of mine from using this grossly offensive name for him. Offensive to the memory of my brave and loyal Mishti and to the other dogs I have grown up with.
(The author is a confirmed and dedicated admirer of dogs.)