The railway minister and his wife have a goat in their house. So do many Indian politicians and government bureaucrats.
It is believed the railway minister and his wife pray to this goat every morning, dutifully, so that wealth will keep flowing into their homes, uninterruptedly.
There is another reason to pray to the goat – so the minister can escape corruption charges.
They resent being taken as lightly as puns.
So with more and more politicians seeking the help of goats, naturally the cost of mutton is rising further. It was already high. Now it is prohibitive.
And many Indians, already hit by the high price of mutton, have to settle for the bland taste of broiler chicken.
Now I wasn’t aware of this background at all when, the other day, I was at a Parsi home for lunch and instead of the traditional, and delicious, mutton dhansak, I was served chicken dhansak.
I raised the question at the dining table of this Parsi home, which, traditionally, is no place to raise questions since the food in front of you is enough to distract you from raising any questions, and was told that goat meat was not available in the market as all the goats were at politicos' and bureaucrats' homes, being pampered with prayers and other offerings like spinach and cabbage leaves.
Special planes were flying goats to places all over India wherever either of these was riddled by corruption charges.
The goats that were left in the market were too obstinate to listen to anyone’s prayers, but since they were a scarcity their cost had risen.
Even biryani, which is traditionally made with mutton, had been corrupted with chicken.
It has reached a stage that if any one receives an invitation to dine at a friend’s or relative’s home, a highly impolite question is raised: Are you serving mutton or chicken?
Indians of traditional hospitality are hit badly. Neither can they invite anyone home, nor can they get invitations to any home. A few use the invitation as a ruse to get reciprocal invitations, so their ruse, too, is hit.
Meanwhile, though elections and bombings are simultaneously taking place in neighbouring Pakistan, the country is a good source of healthy, well-fed goats, and Indian diplomats, politicians and entrepreneurs have already finalised plans and opened a new trade door between the countries, with goats passing through that door.
Known to be patient with people praying to them, these Pakistan goats are already sought after among our politicians and bureaucrats. They can maintain a still head and complete silence without that infuriating 'maeh eh eh' for over five minutes, which is a clear sign they are listening attentively.
Don’t ask the cost of this goat? If you must, you are not affluent enough to own one, and if you’re not affluent enough, you haven’t been corrupt enough to become affluent enough.
Similar short humour stories and satires in our Self-Published book, Dan Mullagathanny’s Irresponsible Stories, written by Desmond Macedo, illustrated by Jayesh Raut. We're looking for Publishers.
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