N for nepotism

Updated: Jul 26, 2020, 07:31 IST | Rahul da Cunha | Mumbai

"Which words specifically, Lobo Lobo? Are these words in the Shashi Tharoor lexicon or what?" I enquired

Illustration/Uday Mohite
Illustration/Uday Mohite

Rahul da CunhaLobo Lobo came over the other day with a quizzical look, a Roget's Thesaurus, and copies of Oxford and Webster's Dictionaries tucked under his scrawny arms.

"Dikuna men, I'm fully perplexed about some big big words dat are flying around dese days... don't understand half of dem, men…," he thundered, slamming down the heavy tomes on a table.

"Which words specifically, Lobo Lobo? Are these words in the Shashi Tharoor lexicon or what?" I enquired.

"Ok. Lemme start at de top to give you a clearer idea… Wot is dat word, uhm, I heard it de udder day on de TV… haan yes: 'ranautism'? Wot in heaven's name is 'ranautism'?"

"'Ranautism?' Ah that's simple. 'Ranautism' is the habit of looking for any means, any opportunity to gain maximum publicity for oneself."

"Ok, understood. And dere is anudder word men. It is sumting called a 'kangana', wot it means to be a 'kangana', men Dikuna?"

"Uhm, that's slightly more complex term, Lobo Lobo. I'll put it in a sentence to help you understand. 'To become MD of the firm he was working for, Rakesh slowly kanganaed and kanganaed his way to the top, leaving a trail of bodies'."

"Ah Dikuna men. It means pull down colleagues and bad mouth everyone else to get ahead, is dat correct, men?"

I nodded.

"Ok ok tanks men. Den men wot about dis udder term, ahh, lemme check aah, 'sachinpilot.' Wot it means to be a 'sachinpilot'?

"Mmmmm, Theo, a 'sachinpilot' is someone who's in a complete state of confusion."

"Use it in a sentence men. Don't just say like dat only. How I'll understand?"

"Okay here goes, 'Chimpu was faced with a dominating mother and a demanding wife. Whom to give in to, left the poor man in a constant state of 'sachipilottment'!"

"Uh oh, I follow. Den wot it means, to be a 'gehlot'?"

"A 'gehlot' is a wily old fox that is a faithful disciple of a dynasty."

"Dikuna men, when you say, dynasty, wot exactly you mean?"

"A dynasty, Lobo Lobo, like the Ming Dynasty, the Tang Dynasty. It is a large sequence of rulers from the same family."

"Oh you mean like de Ambanis?" he enquired.

"Uhm that's not who I was referring to. The Ambani are uhm…a family…but they aren't rulers, in the sense that they aren't ruling anyone or anything."

"Of course men. Wot rubbish you're talking, dey rule India! Any way, let me get back to dese big big words. Tell me Dikuna men, what it is to be a 'karanjohar'?"

"Uhm, a 'karanjohar'?"

"Yes, a 'karanjohar'."

"Uhm Lobo Lobo, I think the Webster Dictionary defines a 'karanjohar' as someone in power who favours relatives in giving jobs."

"Wot nonsense, Boss. That's 'nepotism', it happens in all professions. Arre wot men. In my family too, everyone is an eye specialist, it's been handed down from gen to gen, dat's not a 'karanjohar'. Dat's regular nepotism, occurs in all Indian 'khandaans' men."

Lobo Lobo had a point.

I was absolutely 'manmohansinghed'.

Rahul daCunha is an adman, theatre director/playwright, photographer and traveller. Reach him at rahul.dacunha@mid-day.com

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