Work, passion, interests and life

What’s it about cars?

Posted on: June 9, 2015

The other day one of my wife’s close friend quizzed her – “So, which cars do you guys have these days?” I find such questions to be insensitive, as cruel as asking someone how much money he makes in his job. Increasingly, people are jettisoning such old age niceties and have no qualms about asking even a stranger “So, what’s your salary, Mister?” Some of my non ambitious traits when it comes to possessing gizmos and materialistic stuff seemed to have rubbed off on my spouse as well and she told her friend that she was happy with the small car that we owned and have no intention of going for an upgrade just immediately….

Ironies are however a fact of life. Our child loves these mean machines on the road, the very ones that are spewing toxicity in the air making Delhi (we live close by) the MOST POLLUTED CITY IN THE WORLD. The air in the National Capital Region is unsafe for children and adults alike, and recent scientific studies are harping on the fact that being exposed to such airborne pollutants for a decade can cause irreversible damages to body organs like lungs and kidneys. The  other day I read in TIMES OF INDIA that the Delhi correspondent of the New York Times have decided to permanently shift base from our National capital after a three year sojourn because his child is increasingly manifesting symptoms of ailments that has grave consequences. 

Such issues don’t bother our political leaders. They’re more fixated on their legal wrangling as to who should call the shots when governance of the Capital is concerned – whether it’s through the elected AAP or the Lieutenant Governor (a nominee of the Centre) and their bickering fill up pages in the dailies and the media.

On a positive note, The Govt. recently has woken up to the need of public health safety and we witnessed a massive crackdown on Nestle’s Maggi which was found to contain dangerous levels of lead in it. This spring hope that though it is late, The Govt. might yet take strong steps to ameliorate the air in the Capital – restrict the sale of vehicles beyond an acceptable number, enforce stringent fuel emission norms, promote eco-friendly cars etcetera.

I have been living for about a decade now in the NCR. Auto Expos are a regular feature here and the one in Greater Noida last year created almost a stampede like situation and many people were disappointed being denied entry into the exhibition arena owing to over crowding. Such is the craze for cars in these parts… one of the favorite topics of discussion almost always veer around cars. Most of them are really up-to-date when it comes to make, cost, efficiency and other technical details relating to new cars that are populating the roads of Delhi at a frightening pace. On last count, Delhi had in excess of 86 lac vehicles on its road. What possibly is not being realized is that they’re opening a death trap for their offspring and GenNext …

I too am faced with a big challenge. My eleven year old son can rattle off names like Lamborghini and Chevrolet and have the prices of Mercedes and Jaguars, & Skodas and Audis and their numerous models at his fingertips, which if you were to ask me would definitely elicit a blank. The excitement that overtakes him when he spots a Jaguar on the road (he informs me it costs 99 lacs, is that true?) would outshine the joy of a devotee on finding his/her Supreme. How do I kill that excitement of my child whose only ambition in life is to become an Automobile engineer, and design better versions (whatever that means) of Porches and Lamborghinis some day?   





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