Indian seems to be so smitten by the caste system (Varna Vyavastha) that it has become an omnipresent evil – even on the roads. The four basic types of daily commuters that we see and observe over the busy strip seems to be so synonymous to Indian caste system. And when stuck in any traffic jam or madrush, the analogy comes to be more vivid.
Car Wallah – The Brahmin
The one who literally owns the road with false pride. Treats others as untouchables (give them a minor scratch or dent to know what does it mean). And when they arrive, they’d expect everyone to make a way for their easy cruise. And as a Brahmin would chant mantras all day long, constant honking is what comes to be an alternative which will supposedly lead it to Moksha.
Auto Wallah – The Vaishya
Anything for the fare errrr business. Illegal sources (permit, parking, licence, union etc.) but legal income. And since ethics in the modern business is a myth, same goes for the rides on fare. They are among greatest economic manipulators for whom price hike is an opportunity to encash (Rs 2 hike in petrol price can fetch them anything higher than Rs 20-30 ). And ‘taken for ride’ is a phrase best realized with them only.
Motorcyclists – The Kshatriya
These are the one who never fails to show off their warrior traits on road with anthems like ‘nothing can stop me’ (red light syndrome & will even take pavements to reach my place) and ‘catch me if you can’ (once hits or bangs anything). Considers rash & rude riding as a part of machoism with always under the false belief that they are Ninjas on road. And to accomplish the task, they never shy away from taking any zig-zag route to other’s discomfort as everything is fair in love and war – and hence the Kshatriyas.
Rikshaw & Cycle Wallah – The Shudra
Trafically abused people who are ‘dharti ka bojh’ for other road-mates. Can be slapped & thrashed on the middle of the road because of they don’t deserve to share the same space. Poorest of poor, who makes for their living by carrying loads for other but can’t co-exist with the same. Just as every other Dalit, they too have a constitutional right to make it to anywhere – but who cares ?
Road, rush and racism – finally, I’m longing and wondering for the traffic scenario which would correspond to egalitarian Sanatan Dharma anyday !