I’m a part of 125 WhatsApp groups. Yes, can’t believe it na? I’ve been told it’s a Guiness Book of World Records fact.
I do think India has found an ideal timepass activity for the ‘no kaam dhandha’ brigade.
At work, working out, at weddings, watching movies, waiting at restaurants, walking in parks, it doesn’t matter, we relentlessly focus on messaging as if our life depended on it.
WhatsApp has truly taken the place of every other obsession. “Arre yaar, I’m a multi-tasker’, is the justification of most Whatsappers-cum-selfie addicts as they nearly get run over by cars, or trains, trying to message and shoot simultaneously.
I’ll let you into a secret — I know why us Indians love WhatsApp. There are two reasons:
1. We love to gossip, and
2. Because it’s a free service.
I know you’re dying to know what groups, I’m a part of… am I right?
So, for starters there are my two family groups — you see I’m half-Gujju, and half-Goan.
Illustration / Amit Bandre
So, there’s the usual marriage/love shuv gossip, on my Gujarati side — which pure Brahmin cousin of ours has married outside the community, God forbid, a Vaishya. Or worse, a Sindhi or Maaru. And there’s the Goa half — my Dad’s uncle, who is 91 but is still called ‘Baba’ — runs a beach shack in Baga, and his son Savio manages a vociferous WhatsApp group, to save ‘The Beef Chilly Dish’ as it will adversely effect Goa tourism. So yes, between these two groups and their activities, my phone doesn’t stop flashing.
And then there are the other groups. There’s the Bengali WhatsApp groups — TEAM DADA — which is ‘Saurav should be team director and not Shastri’. Also there’s the ‘Didi for PM’ one. And ‘Mishti Doi should be a national dessert’, called ‘Play Mishti For Me’ group. Then there are others like the ‘Save Arvind Kejriwal from political suicide’ group called ‘WHATSAAP’.
The ‘Get the BMC to work in the day’ group called ‘Be More Considerate’.
There’s a ‘Bombay is the new Shanghai’ group. This group tries to sell the city as an idyllic holiday destination, if you want to feel the experience of a war.
I got added to three new groups this morning —To support poor Manmohan Singh from getting more embroiled in Coalgate, called ‘COALMAN’.
There’s a special group named ‘BHAI BAKERY BLACKBUCK’. This group is trying to make the case that Salman was never in the fateful car that ran over pavement dwellers, but was in fact shooting blackbucks at that very time.
And finally there is the ‘KAHAN FEKU’ group — loosely translated as ‘Where is Rahul Gandhi?’ Millions have joined this group. There are detectives, who are trying to find out if the Congress scion has been kidnapped by the Colombian mafia? Or by a bunch of rebel Congress leaders? Travel agents are asking if he’s holidaying in some destination they’ve never heard of.
And Arnab Goswami wants him for interview number two.
Rahul da Cunha is an adman, theatre director/playwright, photographer and traveller. Reach him at rahuldacunha62 @gmail.com
The views expressed in this column are the individual’s and don’t represent those of the paper.