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Mumbai Diary page: Monday Musings

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Looking after senior citizens
Recently, one of our colleagues tells us, an elderly lady accidentally fell down some steps in her home in the city where she lives with her children and grandchildren. She was not hurt badly but in view of her age (she is over 80), she was kept for observation overnight at the hospital.

As required by law, the hospital informed the relevant police station about the incident, and shortly thereafter the family was contacted by an officer of the law who asked about the circumstances of the mishap. One of the questions they were asked puzzled the family, until they realised the implications of what it meant. The question was whether the house was registered in the senior citizen’s name.

Turns out that often, old people are “accidentally” hurt in attempts by their own family members to usurp their property. As it happens, it really was an accident in this case, but it is chilling to think that it is not always so. And we feel all the more reassured that the Mumbai Police are on the job.

It means a lot of time spent in following up cases that the hospitals inform them about, and most of the time they are innocuous mishaps. But in those cases where senior citizens sometimes helpless due to infirmity and illness are at the mercy of greedy relatives, we are grateful that someone is watching.

Rain after pain?
As the heat scorched the city yesterday, we overheard a woman in the local train, saying, “When it is terribly hot, it means that the monsoon will be equally fierce.

We will have good rain!” We asked the woman where she is from, and she replied, “Uran.” Maybe she knows more than the weather boffins, who are talking about the El Nino effect which will result in a bad monsoon.

'I want to hold your hand'
This was not a musical interlude, though. A young woman was nabbed by the police (why, we don’t know) and was taken from Dadar station to Mumbai Central. She was accompanied by two police personnel, one male and one female.

Look at the photograph we got, and guess which one had her firmly in hand! We are quite taken aback, because the purpose of having women police accompany women in custody is to ensure they are not improperly treated. So why didn’t the woman constable grab hold of the woman in custody?

'Alex Ferguson' in Mumbai
Book hunters were surprised to see a pirated copy of legendary football manager Sir Alex Ferguson’s autobiography on the streets of Mumbai the other day.

This is the real thing but pirated editions of Sir Alex Ferguson’s book have found their way to the city. Pic/Getty Images
This is the real thing but pirated editions of Sir Alex Ferguson’s book have found their way to the city. Pic/Getty Images

What does this mean apart from the fact that the pirates are at work, chipping away at copyright ethics with every phoney edition? It means the original edition of Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography, costing Rs 1299 in India, has done well enough to grab the attention of the greedy cheats.

Monday Musings was told that the cost of the pirated edition was R 550, but the price was negotiable. We didn’t, and walked along in search of the other books. Yes, we don’t believe in encouraging piracy.

Old habits die hard
No matter how modern we get, it seems we can’t let go of some traditions. The refurbished Cooperage football stadium in Colaba played host yesterday to the Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) League Elite Division ‘Super Six’ play-off match between Air India and Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers (RCF).

The coconut is ever-auspicious. Pic/Atul Kamble
The coconut is ever-auspicious. Pic/Atul Kamble

The match was scheduled for a 4pm start but was delayed by half an hour because of the ceremonial coconut-breaking which had to be conducted. No matter that the ground is all-modern astro-turf.

The ground, which has got a makeover with the natural turf being replaced by the artificial stuff, has not hosted a competitive game since the end of the 2009-10 season.

An MDFA official was heard saying that he wasn’t aware what needed to be done. But since the garland and coconut was brought to the premises they had to do it before the game. Well, they also say that tradition can be blind sometimes...

Contributed by: Clayton Murzello, Pravin Mahida, Sundari Iyer, Vidya Heble

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