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Sight Screen

Friday, November 18, 2005

Who needs this?

An editorial, no less, in the Hindustan Times frames the Sourav Ganguly selection issue on parochial lines -- as a Bengali versus non-Bengali issue. Makes you wonder -- where's this thing going to stop?
While the rest of India has come to terms with the fact that a Sourav-less team can play cricket, Kolkata has turned its initial anguish into anger. A minister of state along with a former mayor have already declared that they will boycott today’s one-dayer against the South Africans at the Eden Gardens if Sourav is not reinstated. While the rest of the world shudders at the thought of such a display of agit-prop, the intellectual in us has latched on to the sub-nationalist tenor to the whole affair. The treatment meted out to Sourav Ganguly is being seen by Bengalis — barring a few treacherous ‘Hindustani-bangalis’ — as payback against a people who have always been self-assured of their cultural (if little else) superiority over the rest of those who inhabit India.


  • Well prem whether anybody needs it or not is irrelevent. What paper is stating is correct. SG's sacking is not being taken in the right spirit by Bengal and Bengali's and this is unfortunate. I am sure the communist governemnt will be in trouble if SG is not reinstated and thats why the CM of Bengal and other ministers are openly advocating his selection in team India. JD and Mahendra's statement also come from the fact that Mahendra is a congressman and central government is running on left support I would say it is Bengal's chance to show it is superior by letting SG score some runs and get back on the basis of form.

    By Blogger J, at 16:31  

  • Do HT editors subscribe to a patent diet of lotus? What pathetic standards of reporting!!!
    Rabble rousing at its worst.
    There should be a Public interest litigation case slapped on such people for disturbing the peace fabric of the nation.
    I believe the malaise is quite universal - news site after news site, publication after publication is taking recourse to the melodramatic minor non issues that titillate the lower strata to boost up circulation figures.
    These guys definitely need a 'kambal pitai'. Or an AIDS injection.

    By Blogger Gardhabh, at 16:36  

  • Is the regional question new in Indian cricket? Ironically, it went under the radar when Ganguly himself was captain. Several players from Bengal, like Deep Dasgupta, Rohan Gavaskar, and Shiv Paul from that state were given a national look in during his tenure, but without any preferential treatment.

    Bengalis do have strong feelings about their regional hero, but it is useful to remember that in the past Calcuttans have treatened test boycotts for the causes of cricketers like Mushtaq Ali and Kapil Dev. None of them were Bengalis.

    By Blogger oldmanblues, at 16:38  

  • j
    cant believe the stuff you just spewed out. Let all of Bengal go the East Bengal way - take Bihar along for good measure - only if the so called Hindustan bengalis are outnumbered by the rabid rosogolla eaters supporting that lost cause called SG

    By Blogger Gardhabh, at 16:40  

  • SG Sucks

    By Blogger gangulysucks, at 16:43  

  • gardhabh

    LOL....why bihar though??? LOL you dont like Laloo and apni rabri

    By Blogger tombaan, at 16:44  

  • gardhabh,
    There are lot of things happening around us whioch we may not like but they are facts. I dont like what is happening on SG episode in WB but it is a fact and you cant deny it. You just have to look at politicians statements to see what Junta is feeling in WB on SG issue.

    By Blogger J, at 16:48  

  • I still believe it is just a minority that would take part in the boycott. We all know the stuff most politicians are made of. HT is just making a mountain out of a molehill.

    By Blogger Kannan, at 16:49  

  • It is a long story Tombaan - but in short, Laloo was an inconsequential nitwit on the Bihar political scene till Jbasu of WB took him under his tutelage and gave him the marxist mantra of class (read caste) politics - as a fall-off we have a strong maoist movement coming up in that state (they call themselves maoist, but even the CHinese dont want anything to do with them) Bihar has never been the same again - the latest news of the jailbreak (can you imagine 1000 guys holding a whole town hostage) at jehanabad.
    And all this because of the politicians from WB - that is why I am asking them to take Bihar with them when they start singing 'Amar Sonar Bangla'.

    By Blogger Gardhabh, at 16:52  

  • Unbelievable tripe. The cynic in me has to wonder though, whether there is any real anger within most of Bengal about Saurav's exclusion, or whether this is a carefully planned media effort by some interested parties that, very coincidentally, began the moment India lost their first match?

    By Blogger Multy, at 16:54  

  • well kannan, I dont. You just have to visit some of Bengali blogs and write-ups on Bengali newspapers websites and see what the ministers in WB are speaking. The majority is unexplicably behaving like Mullah's on SG issue.

    If SG wants to get back int he team on his cricketing abilities, he first needs to explain to his fellow bongs to let his bat do the talk in domestic cricket rather then rabble rousing.

    By Blogger J, at 16:54  

  • tombaan,
    i saw yr name in the indiancricket.net site as a mod or something like that.
    Can you tell us what is the connection between sportingstreams and Indiancricket.net - is it a money making trick that sportingstreams got everyone to subscribe, then decided to not show the India-SA series, but pointed everyone to the Indiancricket site where people need to shell out another 12 bucks for the matches?

    By Blogger Gardhabh, at 16:57  

  • Guys:

    Get some perspective and do not get swayed by a rabble rousing column. Do you guys seriously think the SG inclusion -non inclusion is a communal issue ? That Bengalis think this is a slight on the whole Bengali community ? Or that they interpret this as rest of India conspiring against them ? LOL --makes for senstaional news and adds bogus subplots but far from reality.

    Fact is that supporters in this part of the country are always passionate about sports -whether cricket or football and the slighting (real or imagined) of one of their heroes (whether it is Mushtaq, Kapil, or SG) is met with passionate protests. Also, the clamour over SG is easily explained if you consider that Bengal has not had a rich cricketing tradition in terms of nationally represented players (Pankaj Roy, Pronab Roy, a few others, and SG) unlike say, a Mumbai.

    So lets leave the communal bent and communal bashing to the author of the column (did not even sign his name to it) and concentrate on the Indian cricket team.

    Heck , if you guys want to spice things up, start a pro-SG / anti -SG debate --again, but don't pay importance to this piece of trite journalism.

    BTW -- The pro SG / anti SG debate suggestion is a joke --LOL!!

    By Blogger kban1, at 17:01  

  • The cheap article is saying that the kolkatta one-day is today - cant even get their facts right that today's match is in Bangalore. Or was this editorial supposed to be published before the kolkatta one-day?
    Tombaan - still waiting.

    By Blogger Gardhabh, at 17:10  

  • Shitty article. Too much imegination at work. But then you cant expect better from HT and TOI.

    By Blogger Vick, at 17:12  

  • The HT editorial and Prem's posting 'Dadagiri, in Sourav's name' are baseless. Prem lnked his artcicle to a news in 'Kolkata Newsline' site. However, The Telegraph and The Statesman (the two leading dailies) didn't publish any thing in this regard. So, bad press again! Stop attacking communities, be Indian!

    By Blogger Sudip, at 17:13  

  • bengalis always loved dinosaurs:
    first the communists and now ganguly.
    oh and didnt they also love the british raj!

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:20  

  • all this might be tactics by the big players into pressurizing the selection committe
    sure there would be protests but like always eden garden will be jam packed

    By Blogger JD, at 17:21  

  • considering that Eden gardens crowd are bad losers (WC96, indo-pak 99) i would rather not have them in the stadium.

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:22  

  • sudip - cant you see that this is from HT site? What the hell are you talking?

    Also generally editorials do not have a name associated. I have been reading TOI paper editorials and have never seen editor names

    By Blogger J, at 17:22  

  • @Jat

    Then Bengalis will love you too. You as thick skinned as a Dinosaur. No logic will penetrate your skin.

    By Blogger Sudip, at 17:23  

  • really sudip?? really?
    then i'll get to boink sush & konkona & moonmoon & rupa & koena - the only good things from bengal.

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:25  

  • Jat,
    you wont to "boink" moonmoon?

    By Blogger J, at 17:26  

  • & sush & konkona & rupa & koena & rani

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:29  

  • Gardhabh,
    A couple of weeks ago, sportingstreams had a post saying if the site was ever down, members should go to their affiliate indiancricket.net-- obviously one and the same.

    By Blogger Sahir, at 17:31  

  • don't care much abt the Bengali-non Bengali debate

    just that moonmoon sen was so hot!!!!

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:32  

  • not only her - all bong women are boink material or as that clown shri would say 'mate material'

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:33  

  • Prem,

    how come nowdays u are only posting on main blog and not participating in discussions??

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:33  

  • suraj
    i feel u brother and her daughters dont even come close

    By Blogger JD, at 17:33  

  • jd
    her mom surpasses moonmoon

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:34  

  • Bengali women are beau...tiful!!!

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:34  

  • it's a close contest jat

    but I think u are right

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:35  

  • if i wasnt married to a paki, i would be married to a bengali

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:35  

  • oh ho! sudip has just had a stroke because we are being parochial dinosaurs.

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:35  

  • See- this is the secret

    Bring women into discussion and all unity

    that's wht we need women to lift our country high

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:36  

  • didnt see too much unity in the discussion about sania :)

    By Blogger JD, at 17:37  

  • I still got a shot jat

    both at Paki and bengali but tonite it is SA

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:37  

  • jd

    thanks for bringing me down with a thud!!!

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:38  

  • but jd

    really the voice of dissent was a Paki in the Sania discussion

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:39  

  • dont mean to offend anyone but check out the pic on the main page of


    By Blogger JD, at 17:39  

  • suraj
    as a reminder, jabbar bhai is coming for you.

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 17:40  

  • jabbar bhai has some east Paki blood in him so directing towards u jat!!

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:40  

  • I vote for Bipasha as India's captain

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:43  

  • it will satisy all sections of society

    indian men, bengali politicians and women

    By Blogger suraj, at 17:44  

  • my vote is for rupa ganguly because:
    * she is 1/2 the way there = 'ganguly'
    * as draupdi, was a good man manager (5 pandavas) - will help her captaincy

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 18:12  

  • EAST OR WEST... TAMIL Girls are the best... Next Telegus.. Bengalis way down the list

    By Blogger tami_telu_Nort, at 18:17  

  • they are also the fattest

    By Blogger jat_in_ny, at 18:18  

  • EAST OR WEST... TAMIL Girls are the best... Next Telegus.. Bengalis way down the list .... Jaya, Mumtaz, Namitha... the only ggod looking girl from Karnataka- Dravid

    By Blogger tami_telu_Nort, at 18:20  

  • If a bengali has to to made a captain, I will go for Koena Mitra.. She can borrow SG's mustaches when she comes to bat.. I am sure that will put off more bowlers in the world and their line and length can be feasted upon there onwards..

    I am sure likes of Ntini/Pllock/Nel wont like to get her out.. so we got a wall on one side of the wicket.. the true great wall..

    By Blogger Thanks Chappel, at 18:22  

  • I vote for Namitha ...

    By Blogger tami_telu_Nort, at 18:26  

  • am i in the wrong blog ???

    By Blogger greg2rescue, at 18:48  

  • What utter tripe! I can't believe a supposedly respectable newspaper prints such garbage as an editorial. The whole time I was reading it, I kept thinking that maybe this guy was just trying to be funny or sarcastic.

    The sad bit is that we continue to think of ourselves as Bengalis or Malayalis or whatever first and Indians next. No wonder the British ruled us for 200 years.

    I am praying that we are not forced to take Ganguly in the team just to satisfy the masses or some assinine minister. They need to be shown that can't bully the nation by their demonstrations. Before this gets into an SG debate I want to say that I am fence-sitter on the issue of whether he is good enough to still merit a place in the Indian cricket team.

    By Blogger Ranjit Nair, at 20:12  

  • ranjit nair,

    It is true that Saurav Ganguly , current form is not exactly an automatic selection to the Indian 11. But the HT editorial was a bunch of bullshit. If the editorial piece of a newspaper can be like this, it speaks a lot about the quality of the newspaper.

    I find the mention of anguish etc of some minister as inconsequential. Everybody has a right to support or dislike a particular player. What the editor does not know is that CPM, the ruling party in Bengal needs a young man like Saurav (not exactly in cricketing times though :)) to reach out to the young generation of Bengal. That is why the minister will pose with pics for him, will issue sound bytes like "who will stop him from coming back...etc."

    Im not sure how much Buddha wants Saurav back in Indian side bacause of his cricketing abilities , but he definitely wants him back for political mileage.

    Wake up guys...the average guy in Kolkata has better things to do than lose his sleep over Saurav's non inclusion. Of course, there is a lot of passion regarding sports in Kolkata and hence there will always be a tinge of disappointment over Saurav, the son of the soil , not being there. Is such a feeling too unnatural?

    But thats what a section of the media has been doing...extending Saurav bashing to Bengal bashing. Its not actually fair you know. As the greatbong has written in his superb post (http://greatbong.blogspot.com/2005/10/die-sourav-die.html)

    "Here's a simple test. Go through a few articles about Sourav. The word "Bengal" or "Kolkata" is going to be present in the article with a high probabibility. Now go through a few articles about Sachin. Check out "Maharashtra" or "Mumbai". Just to confirm that go to articles about Rahul Dravid and check out "Karnataka" or " Bangalore".

    So let me pre-empt Mr Anonymous commenter. Yes sir, I support Ganguly because he is Bengali. Because you have left me no other choice. If I was Bangalorean and took out a procession burning effigies of Ganguly and shouting slogans for Rahul Dravid, I would not be considered parochial. But with me being a Bengali Kolkatan, I have already been labelled. So now let me live upto it. Unapologetically. "

    Quite so. Therefore its quite inconsequential wheather some fucking minister boycotts the match at Eden on 25th. Those kind of things are not gonna affect team selection. But using such instances to do Bengal bashing, like the editor of HT has done , is abominable.

    By Blogger Dark Nights, at 20:49  

  • Most of the posts here shows the kind of parochial mindset and level of political immaturity which is nauseating. Yes, most of Bengal, if the newspaper and TV reports are to be believed, are angry at Saurav's non-inclusion. But it is only partly a Bengali fraternising thing. Kolkata had made strong protests earlier too, against Mushtaq Ali and Kapil's non-inclusion, at different times, in the Indian squad, and neither of them, if you care to know, were Bengalis. The reason for the anger, as it was then and as it is now, is perceived injustice done to these players. You may agree with that reason, or you may not, but it is, by no stretch of imagination, parochial. It is really dismaying to find, in this blog and elsewhere, 'Bengal' or 'Kolkata' cropping up when Ganguly is discussed. It does not happen with other players. Does it say something about the deep-rooted regional biases in the people who post such articles/messages?
    There is one guy here(his nickname betrays his real origins!) who suggests Bengal secede, taking Bihar along. As if India is his father's ( though I doubt if he has any) property to divide! I have worked in the Northeaster India for quite a few years, and found that it is this kind of zingoistic mindset among a section of the mainstream India that had helped create the sense of alienation among the locals. Try to be a little mature in your outlook. And no, CPM does not need Saurav to boost its strength, it already has two-thirds majority in the state assembly.

    By Blogger devips, at 00:23  

  • Jat.. grow up...

    By Blogger SHRI, at 01:19  

  • Dark Knights and Devips, thanks for your wonderful posts. They were beacons of sanity and logic in what has been an infantile and parochial discussion bordering on xenophobia.

    By Blogger oldmanblues, at 02:11  

  • jat_in_ny said...
    bengalis always loved dinosaurs:
    first the communists and now ganguly.
    oh and didnt they also love the british raj!

    Well Jat,

    It is obvious that you found no time in your life to read modern Indian history. If you did, then you will know that while your grandfather was farming to pay taxes to British Raj, my grandfather and uncles were fighting gory battle with the British - some with violance and some with non-violence. And they were not opportunists like your Nehru. Every family you visit in Bengal, you will find a good bunch of freedom fighters among the older genration - no wonder the British divided Bengal - Sepoy Mutiny started in Bengal.

    Your ignorance should not be your license to make senseless statement.

    No wonder many people does not like Ganguly - he does not have double standard and does not warm up to people of fairer skin. He has self-respect which most of the Indians don't have - they are still ruled by the British in their heart.

    By Blogger dave_dj, at 04:33  

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