By Manuwant Choudhary
Move over Narendra Damodardas Modi, in my part of India whats hot is Phoonk Baba ! (Phoonk means to Blow)
Sitting in a tent on a National Highway this Baba is drawing out the crowds from remote villages.
He does not charge anything but only asks people to come to him with mustard oil and ganga jal (water).
Then periodically he steps out and one my one blows at his devotees, hence his name...
The devotees return home.
I am not sure if they are cured of their problems but this Blow Job is peculiarly popular and just shows the mindset of Indians in the 21st century.
A colleague asked me how Narendra Modi won this election.
And my answer was that partly its because of media pripoganda and also since Indians are not just deeply religious but they can be communal as well.
And he had his answer. He told me, "You know when we visited the villages this time people asked us why the Nitish Kumar government was only building walls for Muslim cemetries, and nothing for them."
Of course, Hindus are cremated and hence don't need walls but that does not matter.
Its no surprise that the Shiv Sena MPs thrust rotis into the mouth of a fasting Muslim but I wish they would think about offering a roti to a hungry person. of any religion.
I think the Sikh Gurdwara langars are amazing, they offer food to everyone irrespective of caste, class and religion.
I remember as part of an inter-faith program visiting a langar in Dadar - Bombay.
It is one of the best lunch I have had.
And cleaning your own plates cleanses the soul as well.
Coming back to Phoonk Baba the story doing the rounds is that as he crawls on the highway (phoonk-phoonk par kadam rakhna), he will meet his sister coming from the other direction and people say that one of them will become stone !
No photography is allowed but I managed to take a few before I was stopped by his men.