Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The legality of illegality

Today I did something illegal. Yes I'm guilty. However I have this weird feeling by the end of this blog post you will appreciate my misdemeanor. It does not relate to the end justifying the means or anti-establishment rhetoric. It's quite hilarious actually. Read on.

The misdemeanor: I paid a bribe to an MSEB (that's our electricity board for those who're not close by) worker to reconnect my electricity which had been cut due to non-payment of bill!

Pathetic! You wouldn't do the same abroad, why do you do so in India. It's people like you who undermine the success of this country.

Excellent points. I agree I'm disgraceful. However consider this fact – I paid my electricity bill three days ahead of the due date. However my mistake was to pay it using a very slow medium – the g**-**mn internet! Yes, in today's world of USB 3.0 which can transfer 42 or so Libraries of Congress in a day (read here), the MSEB takes 10 days for a bill paid over the internet to reflect in their system.

Hence, I pay my bill only 3 days before due date, the MSEB executioners (the guys who walk around to cut people's power) don't get knowledge of my payment, take a nice stroll to my house and THWACK – my electricity is gone when I return home.

So I run down to the neighbourhood electricity office and they've shut shop for the day. After all it's after 3 (That's where I want to work, where we can go home at 3!). There are just a couple of hangers around just closing up. So I tell them my dilemma, and they casually go into a tirade of how unreliable and slow this internet business is. They tell me – give us the pouthi (I always loved that word) and we'll reconnect it for you. I tell them "Perfect. Let's do that". Here's where my luck runs out. Unfortunately the receipt is stored on my desktop and I don't own a UPS. So there's no way I can get to the receipt without power. Did anyone shout "CATCH-22"

Well, let's reason with this man. I'm pretty sure he'll understand the dilemma I'm in, help me out to get the receipt and we can all go home happy. Ha! Maybe if I was Hrithik 'freakin' Roshan. Simple – just start my electricity for 2 mins and I'll get you the receipt – Nahi ho sakta na sir.

What happened? Let's summarize:

I ended up paying a bribe (illegal) to get them to start my electricity for which I paid (legally I may add) 3 days ahead of schedule.

But the real kick-in-the-n*ts answer they gave me was:

"Nahi shuru kar sakte hai na sir.. Illegal hai na!!"

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yes, correctly.