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     Volume 6 Issue 6 | February 16, 2007 |

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View from the Bottom

Eat, Drink and be Dead !!

Shahnoor Wahid

My friend Gadadhar Barujjey went to a doctor last week. Since then he looks like someone who has seen a ghost. Hearing about his plight I went to see him at his residence the other day. He indeed was a sorry sight. He has lost a lot of weight and his typical boisterous laughter is gone. His once thunderous voice is a mere whimper. A lion has turned into a kitten. I was crestfallen.

I sat beside him and wanted to know what could do this to him but could not make out anything from the mumbling that emanated from deep within. I turned towards his wife. She said that after the whole lot of tests the doctor found out that one of his kidneys is gone and the other half gone for drinking adulterated carbonated soft drinks, adulterated milk, contaminated tap water and adulterated medicine. One kidney has to be replaced. They are searching for a donor.

His liver is 50 percent gone because of consuming harmful chemicals in vegetables, fish, meat, biscuits, cakes, egg, medicine, fruits and also brick dust and wild plant roots in spices. So, 50 percent of his liver has to be replaced. They are looking for a liver donor. His lungs are 60 percent gone because of inhaling powder-fine dust, carbon monoxide emanated from the chimney of chemical factories and brick kilns and lethal exhaust fume of defective vehicles. He has also been sharing an office room with two heavy smokers for the last 20 years. One of his lungs has to be replaced. They are looking for a lung donor too.

Then there is the matter of the heart. No, not that kind. It is a serious health matter. The doctor told him that 85 percent of his heart and everything around that pumping machine is gone because of eating pure gawa ghee, butter, egg, sweetmeat, kacchi biriyani and fatty beef steak (his wife knows abut his occasional beef eating escapades with Muslim friends). So, now he will need a big operation to clear the mess.

Wait, there is more. That was all about the major organs. His smaller organs are also in bad shape for eating lots of poison in various food items. His gall bladder needs to be removed. His appendix needs to be removed. His ulcer needs an operation. His eyesight is almost gone for lack of proper vitamins in such adulterated food. That means more operations and glasses.

Gadadhar's wife told me that he has stopped eating anything made of wheat flour after seeing the report on rotten wheat on TV. He has stopped eating fish, vegetables and fruits after reading the story on how harmful chemicals are used by the traders. He does not eat biscuits and cakes anymore since manufacturers use soap grade fat and textile grade colour. He has stopped eating anything cooked with spices after reading the report on adulteration of spices with brick dust and plant roots. He does not eat anything made with sugar....he also read that story on rotten sugar.

“But...but...he came over to my office last week looking as sprightly and bubbly as a young man of 25. He drank a large cup of coffee with biscuits with me. How come he has fallen so ill so suddenly?” I told her. “Yes, he even had kacchi biriyani the night before but as soon as he came to know about his condition from the doctor he hit the bed and now refuses to get up. He hardly eats anything for fear of eating more poison and dying before his time.” Gadadhar's wife replied.

Bhai, tell me, what can we eat that does not have poison in it? What can we give our children to eat that will not cause harm to their body organs and brain? Tell me, how can one human being sell food to another that contains poison knowing very well the serious health consequences? You know what? Some very rich food traders send their children to the same school where my children go. These children of the food traders eat the same poisonous fruits and adulterated food their fathers sell to us. Isn't it a bit ironic? I wonder how much money these traders need to satisfy their greed. For money they do not mind even poisoning their own children to slow death!” Gadadhar's wife began to cry slowly.

I came out of his house and started to walk down the pavement. I could see cakes, biscuits, bread, banana, apple, eggs, sugar, wheat flour and sweetmeat stacked high in the roadside shops. I tried to figure out the amount of poison that could be separated in a laboratory from all that food. I also tried to visualise in my mind how some of those food traders would die screaming if I could inject that extracted poison in their veins. Gruesome thought? Well, maybe, but I like it.


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