By Niroj Dash Sep. 20, 2018
For the prize of a herd of high-yield milch cows and a designer gaushala, the Uttarakhand government is inviting participants for their new reality show, aimed at entrenching the cow’s position as the mother of the nation.
After the Uttarakhand Government performed the all-important legislative task of passing a bill to have the cow appointed the Rashtra Mata, they arrived at the realisation that you can’t have a mother without children. To find the best gau rakshaks in all the land, the government announced a new reality show titled Gau-Getters. The winner will receive a prize of a herd of high-yield milch cows and the keys to a special gaushala designed by Abu Jani-Sandeep Khosla.
Naturally, the question of how such a profligate enterprise would be funded arose almost immediately. Luckily the answer was staring everyone in the face, or rather, the fuel tank. “We will simply add the Gau cess to the price of petrol and diesel. Nobody should even realise, with all the taxes and duties we’ve already slapped on to the cost,” said a senior minister of the state government.
With financing secured, the screening process can begin in earnest. Participants have to answer a stringent questionnaire. This reporter was able to procure a sample of the questions for potential Gau-Getters contestants.
1. How many cows’ lives have you saved from beef-eaters?
2. How many beef-eaters lives have you ended to save cows?
3. How many litres of gau mutra do you consume on a daily basis?
The answers to these questions will form the basis of the scores for each participant. Only those with the highest number of points will be allowed to go on to the second round – an essay-writing contest.
It may sound like dull TV, but the essay-writing contest will be spruced up by footage of the contestants contemplating the majesty of the bovine in cowsheds across the nation. They must choose their spirit cow, which reminds them most of their own biological mother, and write a 75,000-word thesis on why they would rather support the cow in its old age. Any inappropriate behaviour in the gaushala during this stage, like being from Kerala or speaking in any language other than shuddh Hindi, will lead to instant disqualification.
“Given the TRP potential of such an event, a fierce bidding war has broken out among broadcasters to gain the telecast rights to the finals.”
The authors of the ten best essays will be given a ticket to the finals, where they will perform before an all-star panel of judges, including yogis, babas, and pakodawallahs. Apart from the “Fastest Fingers First” round, which in the case of Gau-Getters is a speed-milking round, participants will also have to participate in a cow-centric talent show. Given the TRP potential of such an event, a fierce bidding war has broken out among broadcasters to gain the telecast rights to the finals. Sources state that the Uttarakhand government is considering giving it to a Hindi news channel, since intelligence reports came in that certain English news editors devoted time to a fluff piece about the gravest sin a human can commit – lactose intolerance.
Speaking to some participants before the show, this reporter detected an air of nervous excitement. “My biggest fear is that I will confuse a buffalo with a cow during the Q & A round; after all, restaurants had been conning people for years before the beef ban exposed their trick.” Another candidate was hopeful that his original composition for the talent round would land him a Bollywood break. “I’ve worked really hard on my rendition of ‘Girls Like Moo’; hopefully there’s a music director in the audience who likes my effort.”
Of course, the programme has its detractors too. The governments of Rajasthan and UP, where cow-vigilantism has attracted many news cameras, are angry with this sudden proactiveness shown by Uttarakhand government. “Ped lagaye hum aur fal khaye koi aur? We have written to Centre for an urgent hearing on this matter,” said a senior minister from the Rajasthan government.
Unconfirmed reports claim that delegates from UP and Rajasthan have arrived in Delhi. Expect Gau-Getters Season 2 to be a nationwide affair.