Saturday, February 16, 2013

The heartwarming aspects of the VVIP helicopter episode

One thing you have to concede - our government, when it pledges friendship, pledges friendship.

Witness, for instance, the recent hoohaa about the VVIP helicopters, in which we witnessed the heart warming spectacle of the true friendship between the government and the VVIPs.

The story begins, in case you are too preoccupied to open the link, with the government sportingly deciding to spend 3,760 crores of its hard-earned money - money collected painstakingly from millions and millions of ordinary small citizens  - on helicopters for VVIP use.

The VVIPs protested. "This is too much, government. You really didn't have to do this"

The government, good naturedly jabbing the VVIPs in the ribs, joked about it

"What would we, the government, would do without you, the VVIPs?"

"But you worked SO hard for that money" said the VVIPs. "All that service tax on phone calls, excise duty on transport, income tax on salaries, all those income tax scrutiny notices, the service tax show-causes, the Vodaphone litigation"

"Oh, it was nothing" said the government, blushing ever so slightly "Anyway, we have an army of tax collectors who are paid to do this thing on a regular basis. We keep them on their toes with stiffer and stiffer targets. They get stressed out and whine, but in the end they deliver. Sound chaps"

"Thanks, government. You are an absolute doll. But seriously, 3760 crores could provide low-cost housing for nearly 7,50,000 people, according to a study" the VVIPs said "Are you sure that wouldn't be a better spend?"

"Ah, people. People, people, people. We are heartily sick of them. Ever multiplying. Smelly little ingrates. But don't you worry about them, VVIPs, they will manage. They may be smelly but they are resilient. We have great faith in their native ingenuity and toughness. They have survived in places like this They are happier there. Put them in clean places and they will be miserable. Trust us, we KNOW people."

"Well, ok, we guess. You ARE the expert after all" said the VVIPs, sounding a little uncertain "but seriously, wouldn't the money have been spent better in say roads or irrigation or something"

"Roads! Hahaha! Roads! If we spent it on roads, we certainly wouldn't need the helicopters because you VVIPs could drive around everywhere. The only problem is that people would use them too and then where would we be? Stinky smelly people all around, milling, noisy crowds. We HATE people, we tell you"

The VVIPs looked a little placated. "We guess you are right"

"Of course we are right" said the government "We are THE best in this line of work"

"But what about.."

"That's enough, VVIPs, we know you have consciences but don't waste it on people"

And there the matter rested till this terribly uncalled for action by the Italian government investigated the   deal and found that bribes had been paid by the helicopter company to the Air Chief Marshal for this purchase.

 'That's NOT true", the ACM complained, we are told "they paid some totally random chaps completely unrelated to me"

"They were your first cousins, air chief marshal"

"Indeed. First COUSINS. Not my sons or my brother or anything"

The government  found this a most reasonable explanation and has now cancelled the deal altogether.

"Well, WE are relieved!" said the VVIPs, as they poured a drink with the government "We were never that keen on this in the first place"

The government made a wry face. "Well, sorry about that whole mess, VVIPs. Had it not been for that silly officious Italian government, we would have bought those lovely little helicopters and you could have gone to your farm houses and vacations on them, instead of roughing it out on those terrible roads which are bumpy even for a Rolls"

"Ah, it's alright, government" said the VVIPs, "we know you meant well"

Such is a true friendship