Monsoon Mosquito Chat: On the Colonial Hangover and Beyond
Disclaimer: All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to any real person, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
(Scene: Two mosquitoes, a male and a female sitting on a pothole sun bathing away to glory after a monsoon ‘shower’ bliss)
Male: Did you hear the latest gossip on Yamuna by V. K. Monga, chair of the MCD’s health committee and head of a special dengue task force and how he defended our den?
Female: Yes yes, how he talked about the Yamuna, (mimicking) “but still it’s a big huge river and that mosquitoes have been thriving there. It is their natural habitat for all centuries. You just can’t tell them not to go that side where there are foreign guests”. Well, he doesn’t seem to have any idea that we are really scared of the Brits. Remember what they did to our ancestors.
Male: How can I forget. They were the bright brains who colonised our ancestor’s territory and later when our ancestors sucked their white blood, they furiously destroyed all our ancestral homes. I truly wonder what it must have been like to breed in Chandni Chowk in those days, as is illustrated in the stories by our ancestors.
Female: No doubt! The canal which Mughal Emperor Shahjahan had built was a heaven and I was told that my grandfather used to sing endlessly for my grandmother on the moonlit glittering flow that ran through Chandni Chowk darbar.
Male: Yeah..but who would believe us if we tell them how Chandni Chowk got its name and how the Brits closed the canal mercilessly because they were scared of our bites. Today, people only see a wide road running through the Chowk, a bustling market area which is the tomb of our ancestors and no real breeding place around.
Female: It’s sad, ‘and the colonial hangover hasn’t left. Do you know that Brits are returning for the Commonwealth Games !?
Male: Yes I do and it is indeed ironic. It seems we are still living in the glory of their shameful past. Why do we welcome the ‘royalties’ with such pomp and show which is just adding misery to many citizens. Well, its truly colonial hangover taking toil on them. Will the Games bring any good? I am sure it must be no fun sucking the blood of a already sucked out human.
Female: It is sad to do that, but if not to humans, the Games are definitely doing good to us! I am happy and satisfied that our numbers are growing steadily thanks to all the construction work going on. Heard yesterday from a friend that many are increasing their family in and around various stadiums where the Brits and foreigners will be staying
Male: And we have already spoiled the Indian Games, Ministries are playing the blame game and foreign delegations are enquiring about our number and spread. We are no doubt becoming famous in the media.
Female: Yeah..if they come to take our interview, I’m surely going to tell them about the 1910 massacre of our ancestors and how the beautiful Chandni Chowk canal was smothered to death. Don’t you think it’s high time they learn to see things from better and sustainable angle?
Male: Definitely. They seem to never learn the lesson of survival in the best sustainable way and city planners just ignore so many facts about the need of the city and its environment. Now, if we ever venture out of Yamuna and into its bank or worst enter the Yamuna Games Village, our kind will be blamed for a big crime, surviving on blood, which is but our bread and butter.
Female: Yeah, and I will be blamed more ’cause I am the “bloodsucking” female. Like its my fault that my bite causes dengue! Can’t they stay away from me..
Male: I understand but don’t you worry, I assure you that the Games will take their full time and keep them busy as they are running short of time to complete the pending construction work. So we will be soon forgotten like the story of our ancestors, and they will have real people to blame it on. Delhi has always moved on, Delhi will go on..