Now this is the limit. How far can we Indians go in our attempts to ape Western traditions? Things that Americans and the English used to do till some time back, are now being copied by Indians living in America and England too. It seems Indians have acquired a penchant for coming into global news for all the wrong reasons.
First Kaavya Viswanathan got drunk, got wild, and copy-catted every book she could find. (That almost...almost...rhymed, I think. Read it again and see.) Now that uski chori pakdi gayi she's blushing around and apologising to a new plagiarised author everyday (Salman Rushdie the latest victim). Her money is gone, her future books will not be published, and her life is kaput. The kind of blatant chori-chapaati she's done, she should be thrown out of Harvard and slapped with a lawsuit. Or atleast slapped, I say.
First she didnt even bother to respond to the allegations of copycatism. She, sometime later, denied them by sms. Then, when the cloud of hatred grew larger, she issued the crappiest and most senseless apology in human plagiarism history. She had read those plagiarised books in question, and having liked them so much, had unintentionally "internalised" the words. In 40 entire passages.
Isko to jhooth bolna bhi nahi aata! Even I could have done better than that! Umm, come to think of it I couldn't have. But then again, I wouldnt have copied so poorly also. I, like most proud Indians, have plenty of experience of copying from the guy in the adjacent seat in examinations over the years and I copy quite well. I embrace the other person's words and twist them around to create my own. Idiot girl, she's probably only ever studied abroad and answered multiple choice tickmark questions. Cant even copy properly. American education is useless. Anyway, not the point. She's screwed herself pretty badly now. She's said that, for her future books, she will have them specially checked for a repeat of this episode. Her future books, I can guarantee, will not be copies of other books. This for the simple reason that she will probably not have any future books. Her 2-book deal with the publishers has been officially cancelled and all copies of "How Opal Mehta..." have been pulled out of bookstores.
She is still, however, peanuts besides this next new sensational story. Atleast Kaavya wrote parts of her book herself. Despite all the help she had from book packagers and her library card, she still had to put it all together and write up a preface and things. This latest Indian in global news and ridicule, however, is just amazing. Its a tale of perseverance, obsession, love, passion, and an extreme case of lack in life. In case you want to read the prim and proper version of it, check out The Telegraph's report on it. Otherwise you can also read on.
The thing began in London in July 2001. Anita Debnath, the Indian in the spotlight, got lucky and had a one-night stand with this guy Chay Ankers. Poor guy, he did not know the hidden weapons she had in her armory. I dont mean any kind of kinky sex ritual. I mean that he promptly forgot her after that, and went on with life. But she, to his ignorance, was a Computer Science graduate and had two two Masters degrees! Boy, does she use them now. Ankers did not respond positively to her calls or invitations to shady motel rooms. So she sent him an email next Valentine's Day claiming to have acquired chlamydia (a sexually transmitted disease) from him. The guy got a med-checkup and found himself clean. He told her so, asking her to f*** off, like every self-respecting Britisher, faced with a mutinous Indian, has been doing for hundreds of years.
This is where the Fatal Attraction part of it kicks in. She started stalking him. She uses the help of some web-forum which specialises in milking money out of losers like her, and drew out a campaign to capture him. Ankers had moved out of town, to start a fresh new life with a fresh new girlfriend. So, she moved to that place too. She started going to the same pub as him, sent jhooth-mooth ka letters to the girlfriend and hacked into his email account. Hmmm, you want to know why she hacked into his email account? All she did was subscribe him for gay porn. So that she could scare off the girlfriend. She found out about all his vacation plans from the email id too. She even bloody set up a website, chayisgay.com, to achieve God knows what.
Now this is ridiculous. After just a one night stand, she stalked him for 5 years! She stalked him at work, at home, on vacations - everywhere. Like a leopard with its prey in sight, or like Michael Jackson with a kid in his Neverland ranch, she wouldnt give up once she had him in her sight.
But just like Kaavya, nothing all that serious is happening to her either. She's not going to jail or anything. The judges in that place bother to think of redemption-istic punishments, instead of plain and simple kaid-e-baamushakkad/jailtime (from all the Hindi movies I've seen). She's going to get treatment for her "acute mental state". Slap her too, please.