Is the Smog Making Dilliwalas Angry?


Is the Smog Making Dilliwalas Angry?

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

Kids smoke cigarettes
Men smoke cigars
And legends stay in Delhi and NCR
– A WhatsApp Forward

It’s another day of smog wreaking havoc in Delhi, and citizens are feeling like blackbucks trapped in a city full of Salman Khans. This cruel end seems all the more unfair considering we’ve done our duty as God- and Modi-fearing taxpayers. We’ve increased organic food consumption and reduced smoking, and still we’re fucking dying.

The gross unfairness of it all is creating a lot of anger. My parents are angry at being unable to figure out the right brand of air purifier, and the neighbours are angry because Louis Vuitton doesn’t make anti-pollution face masks. My sister is angry because smog apparently makes you fat and I am angry because my weighing scale agrees with her. Arvind Kejriwal is angry because he cannot fathom the fact that sitting on a dharna will not cleanse our air and protesting isn’t the ultimate solution to everything.

People driving on the streets are angry because they can’t see shit and it’s causing accidents of the kind that make them viral sensations. Construction workers are angry because their entry and any kind of construction work has now been banned. Modiji is angry because we are getting bad press for letting our capital suffocate and doctors are angry because no one listens to them anyway. Everyone is angry, every-fucking-one except the people who have gone to Mumbai and are gleefully throwing shade (pun intended) at Delhi on social media.

Guns will come out faster than papa’s connect to a peon in some local ministry.

All this anger, I assure you, is not imagined. Irritability and anger, studies say, are a symptom of carbon monoxide poisoning, chances of which increase rapidly under smog. This anger-causing smog will amplify Delhi’s already active anger and will probably destroy us faster than the thick grey cloud ever could.

Gujjars and Jats are mad as people struggle to see the “Gujjar Inside” or “All Jat, All Vaat” stickers on their cars. Punjabis are angry too. They are buying strobe lights to attach to their clothes so that the branding is visible even in the thick smog. Immigrants living in Noida and Gurgaon will now shit even more on Delhi. Guns will come out faster than papa’s connect to a peon in some local ministry.

India’s angriest city is on course for a ’roid-rage-fuelled meltdown bigger than a screaming match between Bigg Boss’ Priyank Sharma and Luv Tyagi. I’m tempted to paraphrase The Hulk when I say, “Don’t make Delhi angry. You wouldn’t like us when we’re angry.” Meanwhile, the question is what’s going to be left standing once the smoke clears?