The ‘Jai Hind’ solution to everything

Jug Suraiya

Two little Gujarati schoolchildren — a boy and a girl —knapsacks full of textbooks on their backs, returning home after the day’s classes are over.

Boy: Boy, am I ever so glad that they have started making us say ‘Jai Hind’ every morning at roll call in school.

Girl: Yeah. Saying ‘Jai Hind’ at roll call instead of saying ‘Present’, or whatever it was that we used to say before, is so much better.

Boy: It sure is. I mean, saying ‘Present’ at roll call was so dumb, because everyone could see you were present. But saying ‘Jai Hind’ makes much more sense.

Girl: It really does. Saying ‘Jai Hind’ first thing in the morning at school makes you feel really ‘Jai-ful’ that you are part of ‘Hind’. 

Boy: Reciting ‘Jai Hind’ every morning is like chanting a magic mantra which takes care of all our problems and of anything and everything that was worrying us. 

Girl: So true. I used to feel so very bad every day to hear about all those awful rapes, and acid attacks and other horrible things that would happen to us girls all the time. But now, thanks to saying ‘Jai Hind’ every morning at school, I don’t worry about such things and feel scared that something like that will happen to me as well. 

Boy: Of course, you don’t worry about such things any more. Because by saying ‘Jai Hind’ every morning at school you have realised that all those daily reports about rape and other dreadful things that happened to girls are all fake news, made up by those Oppositionwallas, and lefties, and anti-nationals who have got nothing better to do than make up nasty things in order to discredit our glorious tradition and culture, as preserved and protected by our wonderful sarkar. Jai Hind! 

Girl: Jai Hind! That is the best way to deal with all those anti-national urban Naxals and other fekkus and their made-up news, like that Rafale aircraft scam they say the sarkar was involved in, and which is why the CBI chief who was investigating it was given the sack. What utter nonsense! Jai Hind! 

Boy: Jai Hind! And utter nonsense is right. Everyone knows that all the scams that have ever taken place happened at the time of that other sarkar, like that the Bofors scam we are taught about in our ancient Indian history class.

Girl: That is what makes our ancient history so interesting. Apart from Bofors so many other things happened then. Like we invented flying machines, and space travel, and television, thousands and thousands of years before anyone else did. 

Boy: Yes, there is no doubt about it. Our ancient history is full of wondrous things. There is just one thing I can’t quite figure out. 

Girl: What is that?

Boy: That if all those thousands and thousands of years ago we had all those wonderful things, then how come today we don’t have enough food for all the people to eat, and houses for all the people to live in, and hospitals for all the ill people to go to. 

Girl: Don’t think such bad thoughts! Quickly say Jai Hind, and it will make you feel better. 

Boy: Jai Hind, Jai Hind! It does make me feel better. But the way our sarkar is going about changing the names of places, what if they decide to change the name of Hind too? What’ll we say Jai to then?

Girl: Dunno. How about Jai Modistan…. 

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