Mumbai underground: Life across border
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During a seminar on federalism on Saturday, one of the speakers mentioned a unique anecdote about a Tripura minister whose house was exactly on the India- Bangladesh border. This minister was said to have a house where officially his living room was in India, but his bedroom was in Bangladesh. "The minister crossed the border several times everyday. Fortunately, he did not face any restriction while doing so," the speaker narrated.
Hail the housewife
When it comes to segregation of dry and wet waste, additional municipal commissioner Mohan Adtani does not doubt the efficacy of the Mumbai housewife to dispose of recyclables before the civic body can reach your doorstep. Dismissing the need to add more vehicles for collection of dry waste, Adtani lauded the role of these women in solid waste management and said, "Housewives are efficient in recycling dry waste. Money from selling raddi is not something they will easily part with. If we add more vehicles to every ward, they will only be doing empty rounds as housewives are great at getting the right price for raddi. They know it's better to earn from the raddi than give it to the corporation!"
Five months after Pranab Mukherjee took charge as President, a portrait of his predecessor Pratibha Patil still hangs proud in the Public Relations Office of the BMC building. When one of the female officials working in the office was asked why they hadn't changed Patil's picture to Mukherjee's, the official looked blankly like she was blissfully unaware of the Presidential change. She justified, "But Pratibha tai is an epitome of a Marathi woman achieving so much in life. No harm if she stays up there."
United in ducking posers
At a press conference called by the Indian Navy to discuss joint exercise between the Russian Federation Navy and Western Fleet, commanding officers from both the sides found excellent alibis to dodge questions. To every question, the commanding officers of participating Indian flagship vessels were prompt in saying that the "query pertains to policy decisions and levels above us", with the Russian counterpart replying in Russian. What was amusing was while the Russian captain answered in long sentences to every question, his translator would just sum it up in a brief line saying "Russia and India share good bilateral relations" making the gathered media wonder if the actual answer was lost in translation.