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We Indians have a peculiarly unique way of demanding justice. We stop eating and call a press conference.
It all started with the great Mahatma Gandhi, who went on a hunger strike to oppose the tyranny of the British Raj, back in the 1930s and 1940s. This habit has not died after we got our independence. Every time the government does something that someone doesn’t approve of, a hunger strike is called along with a press conference.
Recently, Anna Hazare did it to oppose corruption in the government. He was hailed as the present Mahatma and the press jumped to draw parallels with him and the original Mahatma. They called it the new Freedom Struggle. And more recently, a guy who made his living doing yoga, Baba Ramdev, went on a hunger strike and no one knows the reason why. I’m sure he gave a laundry list of reasons for doing what he did, but no one really understood them.
It’s like an infectious disease here in India. If one person goes on a hunger strike, it spreads like a virus on heat and before you know it, your neighbor’s on a hunger strike against the local corporation office demanding better roads and clean water. It’s about time I joined in the fun.
I am going on a hunger strike from today onwards to oppose hunger strikes all over. I will eat obscene amounts of food and go on a strike against hunger until everyone stops their respective hunger strikes and eradicates the country of this ridiculous disease.
My diet, during this hunger strike consists of the following:
Breakfast: 12 eggs, 24 slices of bread, 2 pints of orange juice and a quart of coffee
Lunch: 5 helpings of rice, dal and a 12 rotis with vegetables
Dinner: 16 helpings of rice, dal, 20 few rotis, along with some sweets for dessert
I vow to not go hungry again until my objective is fulfilled. This hunger strike will prove to the whole country that I am quite serious. I will not end this hunger strike until all hunger strikes have ended in this country.
I am ready for my title now. I prefer something cool, and nothing with the word “Mahatma” in it. That’s become cliched.