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It has been some days since the Pavlov incident. For those who do not know about it: female inmates were found without their clothes on because clothes were being laundered. Such is apparently the norm. The doctor who protested was threatened/ beaten up by the class IV staff. A protest meet was organized in front of the Academy of Fine Arts on March 15 this year. A handful of us turned up.

I am not really part of the ‘us’. I do not as a matter of principle concern myself with affairs of human beings.  This was an exception, because, like I told anyone who cared to listen, the inmates were like animals, without voices of their own. I thought this was more in my line of work. Anyway, it was a pitiful gathering, some signatures were collected.  There was a Press Meet next, and another meet which I could not attend. Others did, I am sure.  You will find that this is not a very informative article. I have not mentioned any names, nor other details – not much anyway.Well, as the title says, this is just a reminder. I could have written an article with everything in it when things were ‘happening’. I thought I would wait and see if something else – something more could be done.

We need to keep reminding ourselves that there are too many things getting forgotten everyday. Perhaps another candlelight vigil to ensure that the law is taking its course without unnecessary delay? Public awareness, at least? An ex-inmate at the Press Meet said that the personnel at Pavlov would line them up without their clothes on and have fun at their expense. A doctor at the Meet explained this behaviour coming out of ignorance: people who did / do this are not aware that the mentally unbalanced can feel embarassment or shame or ridicule. Which probably means such behaviour would be fine if that were true. If you have no self awareness I can parade you naked and laugh at you with my friends. Right. This same doctor, when asked that if she knew about this all along why hadnt she protested, said that it was impossible to do anything alone. A public outcry was needed. Else, the very patients that she tried to protect suffered at the hands of his/ her toruturers the moment she left. Valid again.

On a different note, we have seen thousands of chicken culled over the past few months. ‘Culled’ is a euphemism for murder – by twisting their necks or burying them alive. ‘Pernicious’ is the word used to describe the human race by the Brobdingnang King in Gulliver’s Travels and I tend to agree. This ‘culling’ was done in front of children and sometimes, by children. A lot of money exchanged hands. I dont know if there wasnt a civilized method of culling. It became a festival of sadism. They were all out to get the chicken and wring their fragile neck. No discrimination was made between sick and not sick: kill them before they fall sick, and wring their neck because the basic assumption is that they are sick already. Now if these same children who have seen and shown no respect or empathy for life grow up to be vicious murderers or policemen or teachers or doctors.. who is to blame? Only Adhir Chaudhury protested, but of course, he is the bad guy, so how does it matter what he says? Right again.

I was wondering if I should title this article ‘Of Pavlov and Chicken’.

Written by kapush

May 15, 2008 at 9:22 am

Posted in kolkata, Political

Tagged with , ,

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