Kleptomania: A Rich Man’s Disease? Or Poor Man’s Chori


Kleptomania: A Rich Man’s Disease? Or Poor Man’s Chori

Illustration: Shruti Yatam


nside the confines of a bar so dingy that the owner named it Kit Kat, I stood in front of a waiter guarding the fridge full of cold beer. My goal was to distract him from his post, so my friend Pranay could swipe a couple of pints from the fridge, free of charge. We were drinking at our table when he convinced me that the act of stealing would yield a rush even Walter White’s best meth couldn’t top. Up until this point, I had only heard stories about Pranay’s habit of nicking objects that caught his fancy. But this was the first time I would become an accessory to his plans.

Pranay is a 22-year-old Sindhi boy with sloppy brown hair, a perpetual stubble, and a small scar above his right eye. He liked dressing up as a college kid to look younger than he actually was. Hailing from a typical upper middle-class family, he never runs short on funds for booze, food, or drugs. He just prefers stealing them.