A New Nation's Currency, A Lifelike Statue, A Unique Divorce Proceeding And A Super-Slow Vehicle
A selection of bizarre incidents that can happen only in India
Show me the money
Self-styled godman Nithyananda—whose lurid preoccupations have earned him a blue corner notice from Interpol—has been a busy man while on the run. While allegedly hiding somewhere in South America, the guru graced the world with an appearance on YouTube on the "auspicious Ganesh Chaturthi day" to make a deeply material announcement—the launch of the Reserve Bank of Kailasa, and the official currency of his ‘Hindu Nation’ Kailasa, the Kailashian dollar. The fugitive also announced that his country signed a Memorandum of Understanding with another nation to host his bank. His divinity is questionable, but no one can accuse him of underutilizing his borrowed freedom.
Till death do us part
Karnataka industrialist, Srinivas Murthy, put his undying love for his wife, Madhavi, on display for the world to see—quite literally. The bereaved husband installed a lifelike silicone statue of his deceased wife to grace his (should we say their?) new home. The guests at the house-warming were stunned to see Madhavi, resplendent in a pink saree, playing lady of the house, sitting on a sofa, smiling genially. Murthy missed his wife terribly and couldn’t bear moving into the new home that she had so lovingly designed but hadn’t been able to see built. While the loss of a partner is tragic, this mechanism for processing grief is one for the books.
Srinivas Murthy, with his beloved wife's statue
Fight, or else flight
Finding Mr Perfect maybe easier than living with one, or that’s what this woman from Sambhal, Uttar Pradesh, claimed. Complaining that her husband of 18 months never picked a fight, and assiduously helped her with household chores, she sought divorce in the Sharia court. She was sick of a life where her husband was suffocating her with “too much” love. The court refused her divorce plea. What were the huband’s thoughts? He doesn’t think he has done anything wrong. He was, after all, just trying to be the perfect husband.
The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, had to wait a whole year before taking possession of an aerospace horizontal autoclave. Wonder why? Because the 74-wheeler travelling from Nashik, Maharashtra, carrying it moved only five kms per day. The typical travel time for this distance—1,700 kms—for a truck is a maximum of seven days, but this behemoth had several proverbial mountains to climb: pot-holes to be repaired, overgrown branches pruned, electric poles removed, traffic cleared to make way for it. We’re on the fence—marvel at the inefficiency or laud the patience of those helming the operation?