Monday, April 28, 2008

Touching tale

7 Jan 2013 - 

I posted this a long while ago, and left the main chap's name out of the anecdote, because I didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. Well, it can now be revealed that the chap was Asaram Bapu, he of the "call thy rapist 'brother' fame, and this anecdote was told me by a former devotee.

Last night, bored because I was alone, I roamed around the blogworld and left comments on people's website. This blogger gave a good account of how she falls for confidence tricks. I remembered an anecdote (what else) which I had found touching (touching the funny bone, that is) and I wrote it as a comment. Then I thought, what the hell, it is long enough to be a post. So here it is

You are in good company, I told her, commiserating with her on her propensity to be cheated. I will tell you the story of Sadhu A*****ji Bapu. Bapu, as he is fondly known to his devotees, is a major draw on the Aastha channel and Sanskaar channel and what not and his devotees flock to him everyday for spiritual guidance, dropping something into the offering plate - sometimes a few rupees, sometimes a couple of hundred.

One day a well dressed man came in and after prostrating himself, dropped in 25000. Bapu’s bushy eyebrows rose a bit, but he said nothing.

A couple of days later, the same gent walked in and dropped a big wad of currency notes. This time it was 50000. Bapu’s eyebrows went as far north as his hairline but he still refrained from comment.

When the man appeared next, a couple of days later, he dropped in a cool 100000. Bapu could contain his amazement no longer. Signaling his minions to invite this fine devotee to his inner chamber, Bapu went in.

“Son”, asked Bapu, “How is it that you make such generous contributions?”

“Oh what is there to say, Bapu? ” said the faithful devotee. “All this is by your grace. I used to invest in the stock market and with your blessings I have exceeded all expectations. I am able to double the money under my control within 6 months. I have many serious investors who trust me and my judgment implicitly, and with your blessings, I have made them extremely rich within a very short time. I charge ten percent of the profit as my fee, and this is enough for me.”

Bapu was moved. Such humility! Such sincerity! Such honesty! “Son”, he said “will you invest some of our funds?”

“Of course, Bapu, what is there to ask? I am but your humble devotee. I must mention though that one crore is the minimum”.

“I will give you two”. He signaled to the accounts swami and told him to get two crores of the crispest.

“I hope cash is acceptable” said Bapu. “We don’t believe in bank accounts too much.” Bapu smiled. “Or Tax audits”.

“For you, Bapu”, said the devotee, “I will do anything. Cash will be fine”

Tears came to Bapu’s eyes as he gazed at the departing devotee.

Well, Bapu is still looking for the guy.


I was sitting in a neighbour's factory last month with a bunch of other guys over the evening cutting-chai and the discussion turned to spiritual leaders and how they are usually hoaxes.

I narrated the anecdote I just told you and to my amazement, one of the chaps laughed so hard that he actually fell off his chair. We anxiously helped him to his feet and he seemed to have hurt his shoulder a bit but the thing was, the chap couldn't stop laughing. 

I knew, in a general sort of way, that the anecdote was humorous but I had no idea it was THAT hilarious.

Well it turned out that the reason for our chaps intense merriment was not so much my story-telling skills as the delight in finding out that the sufferer was Asaramji Bapu. It seems his wife is a follower of said Asaram and said Asaram preaches complete celibacy even in marriage, except for the purpose of procreation at which point, with the greatest reluctance, he permits the - how shall I put it - sword to be drawn from its scabbard. The chap has a child so I surmise he wasn't getting any, and rightly or wrongly, blamed said Asaram. 


Cynic in Wonderland said...

wonder which one was conned more?

Anonymous said...

Par for the course I guess...what goes around comes around.. and investment of 1.75L netted him 2 Cr... But he (the guy) took the risk though...

Preeti said...

Yea, wonder which one was conned morE!!

Preeti said...

and u linked me...awwww :") *sniff* there i go again!

Unknown said...

cynic, preeti - Bapu was the only one conned. As vijay points out, a return of 2cr for an investment of 1.75l. And as vijay says, what goes around comes around. But they say Bapu is very disappointed with humanity now.

Unknown said...

cynic, preeti - Bapu was the only one conned. As vijay points out, a return of 2cr for an investment of 1.75l. And as vijay says, what goes around comes around. But they say Bapu is very disappointed with humanity now.

Unknown said...

I think Co(R)n is the Flavor of the Season!!!


But What if the Stroy is Non-Fiction...Half of the India Will Kick-Start a Search Operation for that ConMan!!! (The same search operation could have definitely led the US to OBL...)

Thank Goodness, Someone thought of it..!!!

Anonymous said...

Interesting. Was it you? ;)

maxdavinci said...

shenoy sir, superrrrrrrr..

perfect monday morning read. thank you....

KD. K Bodhi said...

Hmmmm.. Is this a true life story? Interesting. This is like the typical story you see in movies.

Anonymous said...

i guess, in this case, risk vs. reward takes a new meaning.

Lavanya said...

sooper post :). You should make this is some kind of series.

Bhel Puri & Seekh Kabab said...

So do you need a post to make you recollect an anecdote, or can you summon one at the drop of the old topi? I best you must be quite the life of the party with the tales. :p

Arun Sundar said...

lol..more like e-mail fwd types! but a good read :)

Unknown said...

Oh my god, what an incident! Am I the only one who wants to leave a sympathetic comment here? :p

Rada said...

Happens to the best of us, I guess!

Once while travelling by train from Mumbai to Chennai, during the brief 10 minutes stop at Pune station, I got conned by a personable young man (with one leg encased in plaster) to the tune of Rs.650/-! Funny thing, even while parting with the money, I had a sinking feeling that I was getting duped!

But then I asked myself: But what if his story is true? Surely, I should give him the benefit of doubt?

Looking back, I have no regrets. I wonder whether he has any!

Anonymous said...

Why don't I see a new post? Seems like you have been busy. And, the missus and the progenies (Its correct. I checked.) are not in town.
Certainly makes one think hard.


Unknown said...

@OK: 'Progenies' might be spelt right but the word is "it's", with an apostrophe.

*trots off smirking, satisfied that she has successfully infested Naren's blog with her GB-ness*

KD. K Bodhi said...

@drenched: Thanks for pointing it out. I really missed it.