Political riddles of yesteryear | Daily News

Political riddles of yesteryear

The photo in the Daily News of August 20, under the caption “Hidden political agenda behind crippling medical and transport strikes”, reminded the sane of rats swimming into a sunken ship.

The photo was a revelation and laid bare the schemes of a group of underhand schemers. The man hiding behind a heavyweight of the toppled regime was none other than the leader of the healing fraternity, an unscrupulous carpetbagger. Aren’t the rank and file who pay their union dues ashamed at the sight of their man rubbing shoulders with harbour workers, derelicts and miscellaneous riff-raff and behaving like the chief rat of the pack of rats that followed the Piped Piper of Hamelin? Is the greed of this ordinary, low-class man, who has used the democratic process to stand on the shoulders of his mates, for crumbs, insatiable? What makes him turn into a lackey to cringe and grovel in front of a man rejected by the people.

Surely people expect from even the poorly educated some standard, more from those more educated. Why barter your soul for a mess of postage? Why be the target of such potential slang as “moda yakkek”, a frequently used phrase in the limited vocabulary of the fallen Piped Piper, used once before when long fellow returned from Delhi with the invitation for that conference still in his hip-pocket?

He was known to the customs at the BIA at Katunayaka, as a smuggler, called a mule in the trade of smuggling. He was suspected of turning a prime stretch of beach in the neighbouring coastal town into a quagmire by gutting and drying fish, leaving the heads, tails and offal behind in the sandy beach, to rot and stink to high heavens and under the cover of that operation, suspected of opening a sea route to smuggle illicit drugs. A brave, very elderly RC priest, raised his voice. He was found strangled to death on his rickety bed the next morn. The crime remains unsolved.

Duty conscious customs men

That was the climate of fear that pervaded when the duty conscious customs men nabbed this smuggler at the airport, red-handed trying to smuggle a cargo of amphetamines and detained. The trained agents were startled when they began to assess the value. The street value they discovered ran into millions and he was detained for further questioning.

What happened next was a brazen act of treachery. No whispering in the ears of the customs to release the smuggler. An act done openly, in broad daylight, not caring a hoot for the law, flying in a helicopter from Colombo to the airport in Katunayake, at state expense, to embrace the smuggler. The customs got the message and the whole sordid affair of smuggling which was turning children in ancient schools in the vicinity and beyond into drug addicts was dead as a dodo. The man in that helicopter was no ordinary man, but the President of the country, the Captain of the ship that was later torpedoed by the people.

An unscrupulous man

The once powerful man who rode shotgun, firing from his hip in all directions, is now a broken man, deflated, with all the puffery gone. He is now trying to cling desperately on to any myth that will regain his power and the rats are at their usual games, feeding him dead ropes and inflating his ego. The man ought to realize, at least during the rare calmer moments, no one has risen from the dead excepting Lazarus, that was 2000 years ago.

Just the other day, readers were privileged to read an essay by a Pythagorean, who asserted when in doubt what matters to the courts are not the words in the law, but the intent behind the law. That is a lot in the plate of fellows who are long in the tooth and now thinking of making a pilgrimage to Hulftsdorp, in the hope of breathing life to an unscrupulous man, without any scruples, who will swat you the way an old man swats flies if his goals are met. 


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