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Rich is...

Rich is a BMW breaking the traffic lights because it is a BMW and even though all cars are created equal, some cars are created more equal than others.

Rich is an Aston Martin driving drunkenly down a South Mumbai road, and in a moment of great speed, damages other foreign cars and some people are badly injured. The damaged foreign cars are magically replaced and, of course, the media is muzzled, because in this country the rich control everything.

Rich is the callousness of driving over sleeping pavement dwellers, because they are, after all, pavement dwellers and they were in the way.


 Illustration/ Amit Bandre

Rich is destroying a fishing village and displacing its inhabitants because the village is hindering private enterprise. Factories have to be built because capitalism has to flourish even at the cost of the struggling poor.

Rich is walking into a posh restaurant at 12.30 pm where the last order is usually taken at 11.30 pm. And the kitchen is re-opened because you’re rich, and the chef makes you a Spaghetti Carbonara. You, however, humiliate him because you insist that that’s not the way the dish was served to you in Venice last year. And even though you are worth Rs 10,000 crores you refuse to pay the Rs 1,000 bill.

Rich is believing that showing up fashionably late for a Page 3 party and delaying a Patna-Bhubhaneshar flight, is much the same thing. It doesn’t matter who you’re inconveniencing. Because you’re rich.

Rich is the statement, “Do you know who I am?” being flung at the face of whoever, at any place, dares to question you.

Rich is knowing that every minister can be bought, not in a superficial ‘let me open you a Swiss bank account”, subservient kind of way. It is in the understanding that, even though the minister is crass, corrupt and a crorepati, what he desires most is culture and class, which he doesn’t possess. He longs for entry and entitlement, which you can aquire for him. So for example, you scratch his back by buying him a club membership, so he can scratch your back at an undesignated future time.

Rich is owning private jets, speedboats, islands, helicopters and airlines. But rich is also the refusal to pay salaries to those lesser mortals who keep these wheels, wings and windscreen wipers working.

Rich is beyond a bulging wallet and a burgeoning business.

Rich is a new class of money called power.

Rich is the belief that lawlessness is very much a part of beingan Indian citizen Rich is a new value system, one where there are no values.

Rich assumes “no means yes” as a motto. Rich is the ultimate belief that wrong masquerades as right.

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.¬†

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