A day after heavy rainfall flooded the millennium city of Gurugram on Thursday bringing it to a standstill, the Haryana government has finally vowed to take decisive action. In a press conference that was hastily organized at the behest of senior officials and bureaucrats, Manohar Lal Chatter made a startling announcement which he thinks will serve as the panacea for this recurring problem that has become a blot on his development oriented and progressive government.
His solution: To measure rainfall in kilometers of jam rather than millimeters of the height of rainfall. He articulated his reasoning behind such a historic move. “We cannot stop rains, we cannot flooding, we cannot prevent subsequent jams, but what we can do is to help people cope with the problem. Hence, the state would publish information on the kilometers of jam on a particular route as part of the exercise. The benefits will be twofold. First, everyone would be able to know the exact km of jam that she/he has to face on a particular route. And, secondly, it is more realistic and easier to comprehend ‘kms of jam’ rather than ‘mm of rainfall’ since the former is something that is a part of the culture of the city which, we know, people have embraced with open arms over the years.”
Asked whether the government could do something to prevent jams altogether, the minister was candid in his reply. “Jams are not a making of this government. It is a heritage that we have inherited from the hard work of so many previous governments and people. We are doing our bit in modernizing the city by building flyovers, underpasses, etc. but we cannot let proper drainage system and water pumps to drain the city of its unique identity. This will never happen.”
When asked for his opinion on this announcement by the Haryana government, a central ministry spokesperson shared his views on the condition of anonymity. “In my view, this is the need of the hour. Recall how in 2014, the GDP of India increased by around 2% overnight when we made a trivial change in the base year, and how that helped to boost the economy and revitalize it as has been told to us by our leadership, again and again. I believe that this step by the Haryana government will play the same role.” When pushed that how changing the evaluation criteria would help alleviate the real issues, the minister simply smiled and quipped, “Yeh to 2019 mein pata chal hi jaayega. Just as poverty and climate change is a state of mind, this too is a just a state of mind.”
With the onset of monsoon, residents of Gurugram brace themselves for getting up early to reach their workplaces on time. This year, with this novel announcement, although the ground realities won’t change but the government will have done its part to make the life of the citizens easier.