Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Kolkata's G Spot

Contrary to what the G spot means to women across the world, it seems to be a raw nerve in Kolkata's case. And it's been touched...no, pounded and battered would be a better description. Our brothers and sisters from "the most cultured state of India" (highly debatable) are of the vociferous opinion that their son has been born with (or is it acquired?) the right to be in, sorry, lead the Indian cricket team, continual failure notwithstanding. Kolkata's G (Ganguly) spot is flaming. How else can you explain the behaviour of the crowd on that fateful day, when India got walloped at the hands of SA, in what is called "The temple of Indian cricket"?

I have a lot of respect for Bengalis. They are smart, well read, have the same political leaning as i do. But their fanaticism when it comes to sport and their heros is far-out, something that even i cannot comprehend. I have come across a lot of blogs wherein Bengali's speak of the injustice meted out to them(???)All this because Ganguly was kept out of the cricket team. OK, for a minute let me accept the theory that there is a deep rooted conspiracy to thwart the development of Bengal, starting with keeping their hero out of the cricket team (as is the opinion of my esteemed blogging peers). But how does it explain the behavior that day? It still leaves me baffled. That ways, Karnataka needs to do some serious soul searching. From 6 people in the cricket team at one point, it is down to 2 people (with Anil Kumble making an on-off appearance). Conspiracy Theories anyone? But at the Chinnaswamy Stadium, did we see jeers for our men-in-blue? In fact i can vouch that some other players in the team got a bigger cheer than local lad Dravid.

Another thing that bothers me is the total downslide of the Kolkata crowd from knowledgable cricket lovers to cheap hooligans. I do not need to elaborate on that point now, do I? Their behaviour in the recent past doesn't stand up as too much of an argument. I used to love watching games played at the Eden Gardens, no matter if it was on TV, because the atmosphere at the ground was so infectious, you could even feel it on the telly. But now, i end up hoping that the crowd doesn't go beserk or act weird. Now, in contrast, take the Chennai crowd. Their representation in the Indian team has been minimal, with some of their players being done grave injustice against (anyone remeber Balaji?). But still, that doesnt stop them from coming to the stadium religiously, even when their city is inundated with rain, to sit in the stands and hope for their heros to come out and get on with the game. Dravid was so moved by the sight (i guess he doesn't take support for his team for granted now, agter the Kolkata episode) that he actually went to the stands to have a word with the fans.

I have been to Kolkata once in my life, during the puja. I loved the place, vibrant and colorful, with the most advanced Mass Transport system in the country (at that point of time, at least). I am sure that the people there are as friendly as any other part of India. But the way they have elevated the sacking of a non-performer from the team to a "geo-political injustice" kind of issue leave me worried that the rise of the neo-regionalistic force on the lines of the Shiv Sena seems inevitable in the land that gave us Rabindra Sangeet and Satyajit ray among other contributions.

Please dont mistake my writing for being racist. I love my country, and I am an Indian first, before being a Kannadiga or a Bangalorean. It is this attitude that i wish to see in the crowd, in the Temple of Indian...aah...the temple of world cricket, Lords be darned.


SuB's ApoThEgms said...

hi kini,

well being from kolkata and a bengali i hate to agree that some of points made were true, but maybe if i delve into the mind frame of the people of kolkata. The feeling of hurt is not because ganguly, the bong or ganguly, the guy from kolkata is not in the team. It is more because of the fact that a man who lead india to so many creditable wins was stripped of his dignity. Kumble might have been dropped but he was not blamed of bringing about dissent in the team. The same man who was the first to bring about a unity in the team irrespective of where you r from. Even when ganguly was captain there was never a flood of players from bengal. Today Dravid leads the side, a man who in my book is far greater than Ganguly. A man who can sacrifice himself for his team. Tommorrow if he is treated the same way I would still say it is wrong. The point I make is we need to learn to respect people who have done for the country. Maybe a time will come and they will not be as great as they were before but we sud not forget their contribution and hold them responsible for all that plagues us. Remember Narayan Murthy and the deve gowda spat.
However the behaviour in kolkata was deplorable especially to rahul, the man who stood by the team through thick and thin. The people of kolkata sud have treated him like their own and shame on us for having treated our own people so shabbily. However we will rectify ourselves in the days to come.
What I do not however consider debatable is that we r by far the most intellectual lot. Satyajit Ray, Rabindra Nath Tagore , Amartya Sen to name a few but again by their own admission they took India to the world not bengal. Since they were Indians I guess Indians are the most intellectual of them all. So that closes the debate then and there.
In conclusion let me just say We apologize for our misbehaviour but in a family u r bound to have a few skirmishs but that dosent mean we dont care for the family nemore. Time comes we will stand again and be counted for our country and for our men in blue just as we have in the past.


Anonymous said...

I dunno what happens inside cricket- who brought unity who not- cricketer ,selectors and journalists get paid to know those things- not me.

But the crowd is always right . they pay for cricketers salary so pointing fingers to them is a bad mistake

Its time we divide our madnesss to a few different sports

deepanjan said...

I'm a bengali and visit Kolkata often. It pains me to see the gradual degeneration of bengali society. Whatever happened the air of intellectualism these people were famous for? I've also been appalled by how extremely skewed the bengali media is in havouring Ganguli.
Only reflects how low bengali mindset has become!