Saturday, November 04, 2006

Pirating films? You Goonda!

Yes. That's right. If you are in the state of Karnataka (in India), you better not burn a CD of some movie and pass it to your friend Rajesh. If you do so you are a goonda. This was the announcement made by the Chief minister of Karnataka.
Keeping his film background in mind, Kumaraswamy announced that the Goonda Act will be imposed very strictly on those who pirate movies in the state.
So, what is a 'goonda'? Loosely, it corresponds to 'goon'. Apparently the word goon came from goonda! So a goonda is like a dreadful fellow that you chance to meet on a lonely dark street who pulls you by the collar and requests you politely to part with your wallet, your chain, laptop and some other sundry things that you might not have any use for.

And guess what - you also have a 'Goonda Act'! I mean, i thought that was really lazy. Couldn't they come up a nicer name like say, "Prevention of unlawful blah-blah act". I would hate to ever get arrested under the goonda act.

Friend: "So, i heard you did time?"
Me: Yeah, that's right.
Friend: What did you get booked under?
Me: What a nice day outside.
Friend: Don't change the topic. Don't tell me you were booked under the 'goonda act'. harhahahrha (roar of laughter)

But now:
Friend: "So, i heard you did time?"
Me: Yeah, that's right.
Friend: What did you get booked under?
Me: Well (ahem, ahem), the 'Prevention of unjustified use of muscle power act'
Friend: Wow. Pretty Cool. Say, my sister wanted to meet up with you one of these days.

Anyhow, this 'Goonda act' is a wide-span act. Covers everything from land grabbing, prostitution rackets, narcotic trade and illegal lotteries. AND here's the news:

Though land grabbing, prostitution rackets, narcotic trade and illegal lotteries are flourishing in the city, the Bangalore police have not invoked the stringent Goonda Act against those indulging in these activities.

Obviously. Narcotics, land grabbing are pretty lame as compared to video piracy.

Police Inspector : What's he here for?
Constable : He forcibly evicted these people from their land and took it over.
Police Inspector : Oh, well, ok. And what the hell were these people doing when their land was being grabbed?
Constable : They were watching a pirated version of Mithun Chakravarti's 'Gunda'
Inspector : What!!! Shameless idiots. Put them behind bars. Forget their land, they don't deserve freedom. And beat them up so they'll never watch any of Mithun's movies anymore in their lifetime.
Constable: And this guy who grabbed land?
Inspector: Aww, let him go...we have to deal with these pirated video guys first.

[Note: Do watch Mithun-da's Gunda if you get a chance. Your life will change, guaranteed. For a flavour, go to the link i've indicated above. Phenomenal movie.]

For a hilarious article on the term Goonda see here.

Of course, the other brilliant announcement was to rename beloved Bangalore to Bengaluru. All this reminds me of what Claude Arpi once wrote :

One day an Indian friend of mine was visiting Israel. His guest asked him: 'How does India work?' My friend was a bit surprised by the question, but before he could answer, his Israeli colleague told him: 'Here we work with our guts.' My friend's answer came at once: "In India, it is the Grace which sustains us".

I quite agree.

P.S - i am not suggesting at all that people do illegal download/distribution of movies but...goonda?


Kshitij L said...

Where have you been, Sharan? My blog gets lonely!

Does the Goonda Act apply to Pallika Bazaar? Because you know Pallika is a different country, right? Sort of like the Vatican...

Sharan Sharma said...

Hi Kshitij,
I did visit your blog, but didn't leave a comment since i didn't have anything to comment :). Good old Kurt (somehow, the appelation doesn't sound right).

But yes, i must confess, i visited your blog today after about two days - have been quite fact, wrote this post real quick and that too just as a recreational activity (which it is for me).

Well, PB can't be worse than Fashion Street in Bombay, can it? I haven't seen PB as yet, so excuse my ignorance...

Kshitij L said...

You haven't seen PB? It's like the 17.5th wonder of the world. If you ever come to Delhi, go visit. All your piracy, brokership, car dealership, property management, computer hardware, fashion, cheap sex, liquour, literary, music, and furniture needs can be met here. But especially piracy and cheap sex...

Ajith said...

Hi Sharan,
Mr Bidappa also has an errant son who qualifies as upmarket goonda I think.
Have added a photo to my latest post...very apt i thought...look fwd to ur comments!

Sandeep Bhasin said...

'The Last Samurai' that you have in the hard drive of your laptop is pirated, i suppose...


Sharan Sharma said...

Hi Ajith,
> Mr Bidappa...
Like they say in Kannada : "bitbidappa" = "just leave me alone". Seriously, it's a word in Kannada.

It WAS there on my hard-disk :) temporarily...