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An Unusual Hartal Experience

Innovative way to break the hartal

I got bored on a hartal day and decided to walk to my friend's place. I didn't dare to take my bike, because even though hartals are supposed to be voluntary and peaceful, the political goondas [Keralite slang for petty, or not so petty criminals including hired party workers] may throw stones at your vehicle or block your way.

Anyway, I had had a lot of time in hand and was walking leisurely, when I saw an ambulance by the road with some curious onlookers around it. I was worried and rushed towards it to see who was sick on this unlucky day. But what I saw was some men wearing smart shirts and mundus, and women wearing colourful Kancheepuram silk sarees and gold ornaments getting into it. The ambulance drove away with the emergency lights and siren switched-on. I stood dumbfounded.

On asking around, I came to know that it was a family going to attend a close relative's wedding. I thought the plan was so original... but was also a little apprehensive that the police might catch them for violating the rules.

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