How's my Luck now?

Reflections, views and descriptions during my stay at IIM Lucknow from July 2004 to March 2006

Name:
Location: India

Friday, November 25, 2005

Death of a salesman

One of our alumni, S. Manjunath, of the batch of 2002, was murdered in Lakhimpur-Kheri district of UP, allegedly by the owners of a petrol pump which he had sealed due to sale of adulterated diesel there. Manjunath was a sales officer of Indian Oil Corp. and was in charge of 35 petrol pumps in L-K district. The crime was reported in the print media only two or three days later (stories can be found here, here & here). The perpetrators have been caught, two of them red-handed (with the dead body). But one has to keep one's fingers crossed till they are actually convicted.

While this shocking incident brings to light the issue of petrol pump allotments and criminal elements having penetrated this business, it also brings to light the immense pressure under which honest sales officers of oil companies have to work under the operating guidelines for them. What it also highlights is the serious law & order problem that UP as a state has. For the last ten years or more, when one asked anyone about the worst governed state in India, Bihar's name would invariably come first. I argue, after having read about UP politics & crime and having watched a couple of excellent films on this issue, that UP is really not that different from Bihar in terms of lawlessness. Violence has become quite entrenched in people's minds. Murder is so common that only Sahir's biting lines do justice to the situation:

yahaan ik khilaunaa hai insaa.N kii hastii
ye bastii hai murdaa-paraston kii bastii
yahaan par to jiivan se hai maut sastii

Indeed, ye duniyaa agar mil bhii jaaye to kyaa hai?

3 Comments:

Blogger Darth Midnightmare said...

I could not have thought up better lines to sum that up. A sad reflection indeed of the times that we live in...but then, it does once again bring up the question that who does something about it? While we protest and ask the government to act, none would be willing to forego the wealth of opportunities on hand in order to change a rotten system, citing the fact that those who try meet the fate that SM did...and yet, while none try, who can succeed?

A vicious circle?

10:11 AM  
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