Satire | 2023, the best year in Bharat’s history

Eliminating poverty and unemployment, driving away criminals, leading in event management — India dreams big

Updated - February 08, 2024 05:09 pm IST

Published - December 29, 2023 05:18 pm IST

People click photographs near Bharat Mandapam, the venue of the G-20 Summit in New Delhi in September.

People click photographs near Bharat Mandapam, the venue of the G-20 Summit in New Delhi in September. | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Can there be any doubt 2023 has been the best year in the history of Bharat? We have so much to celebrate, starting with the fact that this is the year — thanks to the tireless efforts of the various Kill Bills appointed as Governors — Bharat became a de facto Union of Union Territories. It’s also the year Bharat was crowned as World Vishwaguru, which happened at the greatest, grandest and most expensive G-20 ever. 

I was honoured to be a part of the G-20 Summit (although indirectly and from the main road), for it taught me how to use Vipassana meditation to survive traffic jams of any duration short of your life expectancy. This would not have been possible if the summit hadn’t been held a few kilometres from my residence in New Delhi, the world’s cleanest city (excluding air, water and land). 

If you thought our achievements this year are only in event management, you would be wrong! 2023 will also go down as the year that Bharat, after 75 years of independence, eliminated poverty. Some negative mindset people still dispute this. But then, they even have a problem with the World Bank’s updated definition of poverty, which defines a poor person as “someone lacking the means to view other people wishing other people ‘HBD’ on WhatsApp”. Today, with every single Indian a member of at least 13 WhatsApp groups, the era of poverty and ‘povertarians’ is truly over!

No real hard data 

2023 is also the year Bharat eradicated hunger and malnutrition. I know there are still naysayers. Alas, the perils of being a democracy! But I challenge these cynics to show me evidence. By ‘evidence’, I don’t mean Bharatvasis who are visibly hungry, starving and malnourished — I mean real, hard data with columns, charts and numbers. Obviously such data is no longer available because the underlying cause of such data — hunger and malnutrition — no longer exists in Bharat.

This column is a satirical take on life and society.

Personally, I think our nation’s biggest achievement of the year is eradicating unemployment. That we managed to do it without creating new jobs makes it all the more creditable. But the icing on the cake of historic national accomplishments is the complete banishment of corruption from our country. Look out your window and tell me if you see a single person standing anywhere asking for bribe. 

We’ve not only chased away all the corrupt people — Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya, Mehul Choksi, etc. — from our country, we have also deported all corruption money out of the country, to places like Mauritius and the Cayman Islands. While doing all this, we’ve also been, almost sneakily, growing our GDP at 9.99%. You may not want to believe it, given the negative decadal growth in your own salary adjusted for inflation, but c’mon, how did you think we became a $6 trillion economy this year?

Securing the citizen

Bharat also made history on the legislative front. We took three blunt criminal statutes framed in the 19th century by our white colonial rulers and updated them with cutting-edge draconian provisions for ease of use by brown native rulers. Along the way, we also gave them unpronounceable Hindi names so that criminals feel intimidated into giving up crime. 

We also got a new Broadcasting Services Bill, for ease of controlling what people watch; a new Telecom Bill, for ease of controlling what people tell each other; and a new Data Protection Bill, for ease of snooping on what people are watching and telling each other. Between these three bills, the government has you, the ordinary citizen, fully secured. 

And so, with a fabulous 2023 behind us, and Amrit Kaal having only started, 2024 should be a blast. By the way, in case you are stressed about mistakenly consuming information that is fake, dangerously misleading, or too good to be true, let me assure you this column is 100% Ministry-approved, and officially certified as posing no threat to the unity, integrity, security and sovereignty of the nation or to diplomatic ties with other states, or to friendly relations with alien civilisations on other planets, galaxies and space-time continuums. Happy New Year!

The author of this satire is Social Affairs Editor, The Hindu.

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