July 06, 2005

Surreal Moments in Parliamentary History

Shri S.C. Malhotra, Chief Parliamentary Reporter, and Shri P. Kulasekharan, Supervisory Sr. Parliamentary Reporter, have unenviable jobs: according to the Lok Sabha website, they are 'officers responsible for supply of the information for Wit and Humour, Poetry and Couplets'. They take their work seriously, trawling through transcripts of parliamentary proceedings for the anecdotes compiled on the site.


During the question hour on 16.12.2004, on the subject of filling up of top posts in public sector undertakings, hon. Member Shri Gurudas Dasgupta put a supplementary to the hon. Minister of Heavy Industries, Shri Sontosh Mohan Dev as follows:

"Taste of the pudding is in the eating. There is always a gap between promise and performance. I hope it will not be so in this case…"

To this, Shri Sontosh Mohan Dev quipped:

"Sir, I am a diabetic patient. I cannot eat pudding!", and the whole House burst into laughter.
I guess you had to be there. Quite wisely, our parliamentarians seem to prefer Poetry & Couplets over Wit & Humour, quoting Sanskrit shlokas, Urdu shairi and Hindi poetry. The rare instances in which English verse is cited are worth noting. Let the record show that on 26th April, 2001, the Hon. Member of Parliament Shri Anadi Sahu recited the following rhyme during a debate on farmers' problems in the Sixth Session of the Thirteenth Lok Sabha.

..Old McDonald had a farm
Yeah, Yeah, ho
A quack, quack here
A quack, quack there
A quach, quack everywhere

Old McDonald had a farm
Yeah, Yeah, ho
A mow, mow here
A mow, mow there
A mow, mow everywhere

No comments: