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Mainstream, VOL LIV No 13, New Delhi, March 19, 2016

Pirates of the Realm

Sunday 20 March 2016, by Badri Raina

Never was a more truthful thing

Writ than “those that have

Shall get”; thus when pirate

Is let loot the realm and best

“Investigating agencies”, this

Is done in the “national interest”.

Just as recoveries of pittance

Made from farmer on edge

Of despair are also made

In the very same “national interest”.

If the labouring hordes who

Make our wealth are not

Squeezed, how may the nation

To fat men be leased?

Good governance cannot mean

Justice to all; it means how to

Use that slogan to rob

Peter to pay Paul. Promises

Made help us beguile the nation;

But droppings from the pirate

Alone can win us election.

Thus if our banks will not go

Slack on fat men’s natural

Excess, how may we press

Them to pay us back when

“National interest” demands

That, however hoi polloi suffer,

We return to the seat of power?

Thus. O dashing man with

Moon-sized earrings. go thou

From place to place, and

Perfidy to perfidy, the caged

Parrot is here to take hint,

And all your troubles oversee.

Of late, the Constitution has

Been much in debate: it is time

We understood that the state

Is not for the people but that

The people are for the state.

And that the state must always be

At hand for fat man and pirate.

Fat men are by merit made,

The hoi polloi merely by fate.

—Badri Raina