COMMON-OMICS: The term used to define common man economics.
He sits in dark and dingy corners of streets, with smoke erupting from the pot he boils his tea in, with all his belongings set mannerly on his Thela and his eldest son shredding ginger with utmost concentration as if he is developing the latest cutting-edge technology. His customers are also interesting, as they sit on the footpath smoking cigarettes and discuss all the worldly problems as they can solve them at their disposal. The customers come from different classes, as the one with a fat back pocket wearing a shirt that is perfectly ironed, smokes a Malboro by lighting it up with an exotic lighter that looks similar to a gun. Peculiarly the cigarette he smokes has Bourgeoisie written over it, and the other person who wears a discarded sweater with a crumpled vest under it, smokes a Beedi that has proletariats written over it. The only similarity between the two was that they were sitting few feet apart on the same footpath waiting for the same energizer and smoking, but the one who smokes the proletariat has dust over his face and smokes to forget what he saw while he was cleaning washrooms and observing his child’s birth on the road as the government failed their promise to provide a good life with hospitals and schools dotted all over the area, while he only sees posters of politicians masquerading as godmen all over the area. The one smoking the bourgeoisie has a cunning grin on his face as he knows a fat paycheck will surely drop into his pockets with which he can buy his son a new watch, while the beedi smoker doesn’t even remember the time he last saw his family, as for the moment his only family is the one who keeps him secure in the labor union.
The chai is served to both the people, the sugar-free one for the well-collared man and the other cup with sugar for the other one. Smoking his Malboro, the collared man leaves the place, in anticipation of reaching his meeting on time. This leaves the Chai seller with the other person dressed in ruckled clothes. Suddenly, a feeling of comfort develops in the room, and the customer pulls out another beedi out of his pocket which has class equality written over it, and the Chai seller and the customer smoke that beedi together and share their similar origins, as both speak the same local dialect and come from villages that are neighbors in the wide expanse of the Hindi Belt in the Northern portion of India. As they keep discussing, from politics, to culture, in the end both hit the same nail by discussing economics and finances. The Chai Seller exclaims, that his son is pursuing his MA in economics from JNU, as it is a public university and he can afford the best education in the world at subsidized rates. He tells his customer now turned friend, as they come from the same area, that his son often tells him about different theories of economics, relating to GDP and the Government Budget, and his friends interrupts him and tells him, that these figures are only for the rich, as for the poor it is even hard to spare 50 Rupees when his child wants a good ice cream for his birthday.
At this moment, both the friends smile as it is normal talk for them, but the figures of GDP weep in silence, for the undelivered justice to all the rungs of the society. In a university, near the Chai Thela, Engels is smoking off capitalism in his cigar sitting on the first seat, while Marx is teaching the weakest students, as the intelligent one’s complaint of inequality, and Mao, the principal has been removed from his duty for allegedly being ruthless towards the classists. The Music teacher, John Lennon recites this story while getting the members of this institution are blamed by the Bourgouise for being too idealistic. Marx and the gang pass it off as another baseless attack on them, as we note:
“You Vandals can only harm the grave, not the idea”- Vijay Prasad
Written by Arya Sethi