The moving finger….

As one sets one’s thought process abuzz, the finger moves on with equal celerity to chronicle happenings that one sees around. It is indeed a matter of regret that a country of continental size like India does not appear to be seriously bothered about the widening inequality that is manifest today. The glitzy malls one sees in the backdrop of rancid ambiance is but a sheer paradox and nobody appears to be concerned over the plight of numerous small vendors who eke out their sparse existence. No doubt, the malls present a contrast by purveying things in an alluring package and at a cheaper rate but hidden in such glossy servings are the tricks of the bulk volume business which no ordinary purchaser would be able to see through. While the goods sold by the petty shop keepers or vegetable/fruit vendors may not be so efficiently delivered, they are nonetheless giving the customers the customary bonhomie and warmth of the seller which is absolutely found wanting in big stores. Here the people move in a mechanical manner with trolley in tow with least courtesy even if they happen to bump into each other. Against this stony setting that presents a beauty appearance,  in a small roadside shop or street-corner stores one can look around to savor the place and the persons who visit there to feel that the differences among us are not much!! I am recently relieved to note that in the Financial Times (London) FT correspondent Mr. Harry Eyres presented a monograph titled “How to defy the supermarket Gods?” (March 16) which bewails the craze for splendid shopping arcades which lamentably lack the aroma and simple styles of  any ordinary small shops.  Being modern does not mean that one can be impervious to the ills plaguing the society and it would be nothing short of putting the cart before the horse if we do not pay sufficient heed to take care of the small retail merchants by intensifying the spread of mall culture in our midst!  G.Srinivasan, Journalist, New Delhi, Inde