It’s All About Loving Your Mata


It’s All About Loving Your Mata

Illustration: Namaah/ Arré


others are goddamn impossible. From the time they pop you out, they own you. The moment the umbilical cord is cut, the ovarian debt begins. And you pay that debt until death. Now imagine you have two mothers: One, your impossible biological one, and two, your very possible but illogical one. The first one can be called anything – Suzy, Sunaina, Suraya, or Sonam. They don’t mind; they’re sweet like that. The second one, however, is a different kettle of mother. The second one has been ordained by her sons, has to be called Bharat, and suffixed with a Mata. No change, no questions, no nicknames. Don’t even try.

And if you resist the urge to love her by another name, the rewards are many. In a country spilling over with compromised halfway houses, this name is the ticket to everywhere today. Chanting it will turn heads and grab headlines. Refusing to chant it will get you more eyeballs than an IPL match. And ever since a certain Asaduddin Owaisi went on record refusing to scream the magic hymn, the slogan has acquired the power and the pump of a Panama account password. From chief ministers to fatwa-issuing bigwigs, Bharat Mata Ki Jai has caught the fancy of the nation, fast reaching and about to surpass the hitherto halting declaration – Mere paas maa hain.