Dear Jack bhaiyaji,
I know for sure that deep within you are a good person and will have no problem in seeing me as your chhota bhai. So I am writing this letter, as a heartfelt note from one bhai to another.
Since yesterday, several people have been saying very angry and mean things about you on Twitter—clearly a reaction to the “Smash Brahminical Patriarchy” poster you were seen posing with. While this made me sad, I was also certain that you would not have done this on purpose. I can see that some gudbud has happened somewhere. Also, I noticed that you looked slightly sick in that picture. I hope it is nothing serious. If you would permit me, I can ask my naani to send you hot, freshly-made dal khichdi with cucumber raita and masala papad right away. Please do let me know.
Original artist: Sophie Charlotte Belnos
Also, I thought I could take this opportunity to share with you the concerns of some of our family members, friends and community members. Please take it in the right spirit, which I am sure you will. Any resemblance to real life people is not accidental or coincidental, but purely intentional.
To tell you very frankly
Pai phuphaji has been angry
Because Brahmins are a minority
Twitter cannot assume all impunity
As a man of 24-carat merit
Opposing reservation in all spirit
He said Brahmins are not potatoes
To smash and mix with tomatoes
Mocking Chitra chachi are some loafers
Forgetting she was the queen of Bofors
“Will Jack do this in London or China?” she quizzed
In a bad mood, she immediately whizzed
Brahmins are very liberal, these days
But to mock them seems like a new craze
We fondly eat the (boneless) chicken biriyani
And, like chachi, won’t spare even R Gandhi
Mamera bhai Anand Ranganathan cleared his throat
Briskly looking for an Ambedkar text to quote
Why spare other patriarchy, he thundered
His opinion RT-ed by only a few hundred
#AllLivesMatter and #NotAllMen can exist
But #SmashAllPatriarchy, should we even resist?
He sipped his filter coffee with a frown
And announced that Jack is a clown
Calling it an anti-national slogan
Katju dada boomed like a shotgun
Full of wisdom like a Sanskrit sloka
Dada doesn’t gas like your everyday tapioca
We might undergo the yearly upakarma
But don’t take us lightly like any rava upma
Unlike your reality TV show judge
Dada’s heart is free from sludge or smudge
They are a hate group, screamed didi Vaidya
‘Cos innocent Brahmins are getting played, ya
Utilising her award-winning vocal acerbic
She accused them of being Hindu-phobic
Time to save Hindoos from unknown forces
We are becoming a minority, rightly she reinforces
Too many crooks might spoil the Twitter broth
But she will fast for your right every karwa chauth
We are a community that is ostracised
Can’t sing Carnatic songs that are Christianised
Our recent victim was TM Krishna maama
‘Cos everyone created too much drama
Maama sings in slums these days
Is Delhi not slum enough for maama, I raise!
Our rights are snatched these days
Like Delhi’s air, we are in complete haze
Chacha Guha had certified MK Gandhi caste-less
Giving us a moment to make a guess
If caste-less is our nation’s baap
Calling his children Brahminical must stop
Your poster act is fake as muck
It’s time to stop pushing your luck!
We suspect your blue coloured logo
‘Cos we ain’t kids watching Pogo
Didi Vijaya from Twitter neighbourhood
Tries hard to make it all good
It is too late in the day for clarifications, didi
‘Cos they are neither sufficient nor speedy
Some might prefer to Twitter and chill
But uninstall the app, we Brahmins will
‘Cos India is not about just masala dosas
It’s time for everyone to stick to our Vedas!
That said, I would still like to reiterate to you, dear Jack bhaiyaji, that there is no love lost between us. You know why? I think you too are part of our family. Because, as my dada has rightly told me once, a man doesn’t become a Brahmin just by his birth but rather through his actions. Going by that, you too are a true Brahmin. You might not be wearing a janeu, but I truly believe that there is a thread that ties us all together. In fact, if maama Yoginath was around, am sure he would have lovingly called you “Jatin Deshpande”. Next time, maybe.
I hope you use the waiting hours in airport lobbies to reflect on what I have said and correct the mistakes you might have unknowingly made. The poster you should ideally be seen posing with is the one that says “Jai Shri Ram”. Because that is what a true Brahmin would do, apart from his everyday surya namaskar.
Your one and only chhota bhai
Tinku Iyer Tripathi