Reality Bites: GDP at -23.9%, time to fry pakodas! 

With India’s Quarter 1 GDP crashing to -23.9%, the Big Bluffalo’s beautiful dreams of every Indian (apart from RSS-BJP members and their cronies) frying gassy pakodas for a living may well come true

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Representative Image
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Rupa Gulab

If you have money to spare, do buy a gigantic commercial deep fryer. Not an electric one, but one that runs on free gutter gas. With India’s Quarter 1 GDP crashing to minus 23.9%, the Big Bluffalo’s beautiful dreams of every Indian (apart from RSS-BJP members and their cronies) frying gassy pakodas for a living may well come true.

This GDP contraction is apparently the worst on record, so yes, it’s another wonderful first for the Big Bluffalo. He must be so proud of himself. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is awfully proud of him too, and worships him for it. She called his destruction of the economy (which was kicked off with demonetisation in 2016) an ‘Act of God.’ When COVID-19 came along, the Indian economy was already in the Intensive Care Unit. Sadly, no one in the government sent it get-well-soon cards, flowers or grapes. Those who expressed deep concern were called anti-national and heckled into silence.

But back to business in the time of a depression: If you’re smart, you will bag a spot outside RSS-BJP offices across the nation to set up your pakoda cart well in advance—members of the Sangh Parivaar are among the richest Indians these days, so if your pakodas are good, you can make a killing. If you’re late to the game, quickly identify a list of smaller local businessmen with strong BJP links who have made money during the COVID crisis (hint: pharma, dodgy ventilator manufacturers, PPE suit makers, etc), and park your cart next to their offices. Note: make sure your cart is positioned over a stinky gutter or how else will you access free gas? For details on the method, google the Big Bluffalo’s fascinating 2018 speech on gutter gas.

The BJP has taken all the money out of the hands of Indians (apart from the Big Bluffalo’s cronies, friends in the media, and those pathetic Two-RupeesPer-Tweet BJP trolls, of course) ever since demonetisation. Since then, they have confiscated local area development funds (MPLAD) from members of Parliament, refused to pay GST dues to the states (they were callously told to borrow the money), and other devious things. The BJP’s kitty is now the size of an elephant pregnant with triplets.

Meanwhile, the jobless nation looks on agog as two of the Big Bluffalo’s cronies play Monopoly with real national assets. The fun begins when the CBI and ED join the game, as we saw recently in the case of Mumbai airport. Things are so bad that it wasn’t surprising when Lord of the Cows (the BJP’s pet news anchor) had a meltdown on national television. ‘Give me drugs! Give me drugs!’, he screamed in a deranged manner. This kicked off spirited debates in drawing rooms across the nation: was he throwing a tantrum because he had severe withdrawal symptoms, or was he screaming because he was flying high? The nation wants to know why he isn’t in rehab yet!

The nation also wants to know what exactly the Big Bluffalo will do to fix the economy apart from getting his PR teams to distract our attention with peacocks and Bollywood actors. Will he promise to stop being a spendthrift? Will he return the two fancy planes he bought (to fool himself into believing that he’s the President of the USA)? Will he sacrifice the ghastly Central Vista project? Will he stop splurging our money on his PR? The answer to all of the above is ‘Of course not!’

However, a few token “sacrifices” have been announced. The Press Trust of India recently tweeted this: “Govt says ministries, departments, PSUs and public sector banks will stop physical printing of calendars, diaries and greeting cards; Department of Expenditure under finance ministry also bans printing of coffeetable books, says e-books would be encouraged.” Yeah, so that’s the extent of just how much the Big Bluffalo cares for the economy.

Oh, before I forget: If you don’t enjoy making pakodas, the Big Bluffalo has a few more options for you. While he was monkeying around with a mike, he graciously announced that we can also make toys or breed dogs (only Indian breeds, mind you!), if we wish. All I can say is that I’m so glad my dad gave me far more interesting career options than this chap!

(Any resemblance to real people or events is a coincidence)

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