Jul 12, 2006

Salaam Bombay

Recently there was a huge hue-and-cry in the Indian blogspace about a Reader's Digest Survey (i think it was RD) that bestowed the dubious honor of 'World's Rudest City' on Mumbai. The parameters for gauging rudeness were
- people did not hold doors open for others
- people did not pick something u dropped and return it to u
- shopkeepers did not thank their customers

Ok, so Mumbaikars dont have the time or inclination to bother with Western courtesies. We all know wat they dont do, and frankly couldn't care less. Yesterday we found out what they do, when there is a real problem

(In case u dont know, Mumbai was hit by 8 serial blasts, at its very lifeline - the suburban railway which carries millions home every evening. The blasts took place at 630 pm - peak traffic hour)
  • On hearing explosions, people didnt run away. They went to the site to help those who were injured
  • People with vehicles offered assistance to others who were stranded
  • People trained in disaster management during the floods last year came out to control the situation
  • Restaurant owners offered food and water to people who were affected. Note that they did not complain no one was thanking them
  • People ensured the safety of women and children first

The city showed great composure and resilience in the face of serious adversity - which they are no strangers to by the way. However, Mumbai retuned to relative normalcy today, rather than staying depressed about a terrorist attack for several years. India will not go and bomb countries out of existence, unlike a superpower whose fury was unleashed upon poor nations, even though there was no real evidence against them.

We stick together, help one another and demonstrate the meaning of 'unity in diversity'.

If the Westerns think we are rude coz we dont display the same pretentious behaviors as them, they can come and kiss my ass for all I care. And in keeping with our 'rude' reputation, I will not apologize for my attitude.


  1. one doesn't absolve the other. Praise but don't justify.

  2. There IS nothing to absolve dude. Its just a difference of culture, and labeling Mumbai as rude is like saying 'our ways are right and urs are bad'.

  3. Anonymous9:17 PM

    Well yes we shud apologise.
    After all it is so much harder to be polite when a reporter buys bhaji from you
    Compared to when a bomb goes off killing, maiming and injuring innocents while dealing with your own fears at the same time.
    You are right Bikash.
    I am sorry.
    Sorry that people like you exist.
    Sorry that Survey's like that of RD exist.
    After all these magazine surveys are what has made their readers experts on relationships, WHY NOT REALITY?

  4. Dude, it's just a statement. It just says people there don't do certain things, which is true. No one is making it judgemental.
    Boils down to this,
    1) People in the west are courteous which is nice.
    2) People in Mumbai don't care, which is not so nice for an individual.
    3) People in the west don't know how to react to adversities, which is sad.
    4) People in India can handle the problems which is good.

    Your contention that (2) is just a difference of culture holds. But the experience is not a pleasant one for any individual (though some have just tuned themselves to it). This unpleasantness is dubbed rude.
    Taking it to an extreme (and past) it is like saying, Sati is our culture , but don't label it bad because it is different.
    You ought to be able to take it down to an individual/human level, and then analyse because that is what should matter.

  5. To anonymous: Didn't read your post till I posted the last comment. Certain rules-if you are trying to say something bring some logic to the table, don't make assumptions and leave an identity. As for the rest of your pseudo crap, don't bother, if you don't understand.