Some police!

Ezhunthru Ya! Orama Niruthu!

For a minute, I didn’t know what I had done wrong. Then I realised I was wearing no helmet. By that time the cop, dark and fat, had my keys.

I stared back at him. I was the press, after all. I knew what would happen. I had been through this charade a thousand times.

Why are you talking on the cell phone? But, I am parked, I lied. Orama Po! Onna Ellaaam…

My friend had just arrived at the airport and was calling me. I had to pick up and had been driving for the last two minutes till the signal with the phone in my hand. Neenga keeya appadi edukka mudiyathu. I am in the press. Please give the key back, I said.

For a minute, we matched stares. I backed off but so did the cop. He opened his palm and stretched out his hand. I took my keys.

Then he realised he could not possibly let me go. He had gone too far and had been defeated. So he make me walk with the vehicle until we met with the SI.

There was a gang of three. Eager eyes, I thought.

Enna Pressu? I named my newspaper. Ennathu? I repeated the name. Sir pressam. He is been on the phone for 15 minutes, said the cop. Id cardu irukka? I took it out and gave it to him. He inspected it gravely.

Oru carda vachukkuttu enna vena panratha? Athallam romba thappu, sir. Would I finally pay my first fine in Chennai?

By this time, a cop on a bike arrived. For 15 minutes he was on the phone, he began. Sir, pressam, this one whispered.

Pressunna vidu pa. Poi tholaiyattum. The last was a murmur.

Then the dark cop pointed out the board. Don’t talk on you mobile when you drive, it said. Or something close. I don’t remember.

The warning lasted whole of 2 minutes. As I left the fuming gang of cops, my friend at the airport called again. Before I knew what I had done, I picked up the mobile. But this time I parked after dropping the mobile into my pocket.

On the drive to the office, I was wondering why the cops never fined journalists or take them to court. I even thought it was be right to be fined for speaking on the mobile and not even wearing the helmet, which the cop pointed out as I was leaving.

Is the police too lame to take on the journalists? Do they have too many skeletons up their closets? What pleasure can they possibly take in being so rude?

Either ways, I guess I have to leave my phone alone while driving.

9 Comments so far

  1. dilip on March 18th, 2008 @ 2:42 pm

    Good you’re press, bad they’re cops. Ugly->This system of LETTING GO of people just because they have money/power/influence.

    I mean, what prevents you from writing "Police Brutality against INNOCENT PRESS" in tomorrows newspaper in third page. I mean, its not practical for you to do it but then still possible, isn’t it?

  2. whiterussian on March 19th, 2008 @ 1:26 am

    "I was the press, after all."

    "I was wondering why the cops never fined journalists".

    That says it all.

  3. neoflys on March 19th, 2008 @ 7:58 am

    why you have to say you are from press? hoping that they will let you off if you say you work for press???
    you were on phone for 15 minutes while driving? shame on you. why is that people like you represent this blog. Its somewhat understandable if someone talk on phone for a minute while driving, but 15 minutes is pure disrespect of system
    Cop knows what people like you will write if they fine you.
    cops are rude but they get arrogant and more rude when people try to show off their power…the bloody press power! I thought blogs are not polluted by the press, but quit not

  4. neoflys on March 19th, 2008 @ 8:17 am

    <"dark and fat"> with all due respect you sound to me like a racist minority? you must be doing well in tamil newspapers, why are you here?

    those cops addressed you "sir" but still you feel they were rude, other than cops to whom all you spoke on the chennai roads? ever been to a vegetable market? spoken to a autorikshaw driver? bus conductor? beggars? everyone’s rude when you show your attitude. Right that the cops did not do their duty by not fining you but they did warned you before letting you go. Maybe they thought you are going to write something good for the people.

  5. Chez Moi » Why are we like this wonly? (pingback) on March 19th, 2008 @ 4:25 pm

    […] forward to this morning, when I came across this article on Chennai Metblogs. I mean, what do you say to this respectable member of the press, who uses his […]

  6. rashu235 on March 19th, 2008 @ 8:18 pm

    Is it that we Indians are not brought up right to respect the law or is it that we have sheer disregard for human life…which of course which while is in abundance lets not forget each and everyone of us could be special and most important to someone.
    Talking about usage of cell phones while driving… yes, I think we need to do something to help the police when we see such offenders…
    The law should be strict and perhaps instead of fines an offender should be made to do few hrs of community service like sweeping roads or some such like they have in the west…might just help…

  7. satishssiyer on March 19th, 2008 @ 10:33 pm

    Press..Ruling party associate…police men’s family…defence personnel…celibrity…MTC bus drivers…Auto’s with ruling party Flags n banners….Advocates…. and this LIST goes on..

    You are not the only one buddy :-)

  8. lilram on March 21st, 2008 @ 9:58 pm

    This is truly very, very disappointing. To have a person who we think is responsible violating the law and then writing about it in this manner is very distressing.

    I must respond by quoting an incident in Chennai involving me and the police again. This was once when I absent-mindedly jumped the red light at the Anna flyover and was pulled aside by the cop. It was not really as if the traffic was fierce or that anyone was affected in any way as a result of this, but it was a violation all the same.

    The cop asked me politely why did I jump lights and I admitted my error apologizing that I was pre-occupied with something and shouldn’t have been so. I also volunteered to accept the penalty. The cop took out his challan book and wrote out a Rs. 100/- fine remarking that he was happy to meet someone who owned up so readily to a mistake. I paid him and thanked him for doing his job well. We both went our ways smiling and feeling we had behaved properly.

    I see no reason at all to violate a law that is for the good of all concerned. I also see no reason to argue when in the wrong. I too make mistakes although I try not to do so deliberately. Admitting to a mistake immediately and correcting yourself in future is the minimum I would expect of a responsible citizen. The cop that day in the incident above, felt genuinely good; I too came away felling good at having been honest even if a trifle careless.

    Maybe my case is unique, still based on anecdotal evidence I believe that there are cops who do a good job. Maybe it is not my place to advice anyone but I would appeal to Nandhu to consider the alternative I have proposed.

  9. nandhu on March 25th, 2008 @ 5:27 pm

    this post was meant for lighthearted reading. i agree what i did was wrong.

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