Delhi is the real melting pot.
And now that average Delhiwaalaa is a second of third generation Delhiwaalaa, the capital ecosystem is like panchaloha – the alloy of five metals – one metal of which comprises people of the land of five rivers – Punjab, who, quite surely are a prominent metal in the alloy, but by no means all of it. So your Delhi-Madrasi is as likely to curse you in chaste Delhi-Hindi, which is referred to by the knowledgeable as Khadi Boli, or coarse-speak, as might a Jat from Haryana or West UP…everyone of them demands right of way and every fellow horns all the time.
Today is one of those confusing days in the capital. It is the elections day for MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi…), one of the tiers of Delhi rulership….(There is MCD, then there is Delhi State, and then, of course Delhi Parliament….)…I tried asking a few friends what exactly is the split in responsibility among the tiers, but drew a blank. There seemed a general agreement that MCD would take care of the public gardens, round up stray dogs, do something about water supply….
Today they are holding elections for MCD. Whole of Delhi is set to vote. But for some reason, it is not clear if the day has been declared a holiday or not. Some are working, some aren’t. Some Government folks assumed that it was surely a holiday, were rudely surprised to find that it wasn’t…Some schools are closed, and some are open…Confusing….
“Is MCD same as NDMC?”, I asked. NDMC – New Delhi Municipal Committee – fondly referred to in Khadi Boli as K-maittee, is well known to residents of New Delhi….Childhood memories of K-maittee vehicles spraying a smog for mosquito-control, and of vans swooping down on street hawkers outside schools…(“Kammaittee, the watchers would shout, and hawkers would fold shops in half-sale, dismantle their goods in three seconds flat, but the Kamaitte guys would be faster and still get them….
“No, NDMC is different” said one. Seems that they have a distinct jurisdiction in some parts of New Delhi, and MCD in other parts….
“This MCD should be abolished” said one walker to another, as I stepped into the garden for my morning walk….