Yesterday's report of the fishy happenings around the Commonwealth Games has kicked up a whale of a storm in India.
Indian Sports Minister MS Gill reacted sharply to recent reports of fishy business in the run up to the Commonwealth Games, to be held in New Delhi in October.
"What you have, gentleman, is a little bit of accounting ineptitude, rather like the kind suffered by the honourable members of the British Parliament last year, when they charged escorts' fees as part of their housekeeping account," he told a team of newshounds baying for his blood.
He was speaking after a rather tiring day in Parliament, where opposition MPs shouted slogans such as 'Down with Fish and Chips', 'Britannica bakes bricks as biscuits', and 'Be Indian, Bribe Indian' while tearing up floorboards, microphones, and telephone books and hurling them with alacrity around the august House.
In the meanwhile Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tried to calm frayed tempers by declaiming gently, "Friends, Romans, and Countrymen, lend me your ears," which caused Leader of the Opposition LK Advani to declare that this was proof enough that the country had been sold up the creek to the Italians, the Roman Catholic Church and other Mafia groups.
Unfazed, the doughty Sardar (leader) continued, "I have come to bury the hatchet, not to raise it. The good that men do should live after them, and the evil cremated with their bones. So let there be no seizures!" This prompted the Income Tax Service Department to announce a three day lockout in protest.
The Speaker of the Lok Sabha (the lower house of Indian Parliament), in a rare moment of lucidity told this reporter that the House could sink no lower than it already had. In the face of the ruckus caused by the Commonwealth games, the House was getting to look like and Australian Rules football field. "It's not right. Games or no games, I don't care whether they have overpriced javelins, or shot puts. Let these sparring Members of Parliament take their spats to the Firzshah Kotla Stadium, or to the White House, for that matter. The Speaker shouldn't face the slings and arrows of misplaced fortunes. I have a mind to suspend parliament forever," she sniffed.
Mamta Bannerjee, Railway Minister and spokesperson for disadvantaged Bengalees challenged the recent news reports and said that by describing the disgusting events around the Commonwealth Games as 'fishy' the Press has played into the hands of anti-national forces that want to denigrate the exalted fish, that piece de resistance on every Bengali lunch-leaf and dinner- plate.
"Nothing, I declare, nothing, tastes more delicious and flavoursome than a jolly good smoked Hilsa fish in a mustard sauce. There is nothing more aromatic than stewed Bhetki fillets in spicy sauce. The To compare a bland British export like Commonwealth games to fish curry is an insult to the memory of centuries of Bengalee patriots, freedom fighters, and Nobel Prize winners who suckled on the succulence of stewed shrimps and basted bass . It is from the aroma of frying fish that they drew their inspiration for great works," she said, while attacking a pink salmon with gusto.
"If there are anymore wisecrack references to fish in the House, my party, the Treenamul Congress will declare a nationwide strike and throw a spanner in any imperialist designs to hurt Bengalee sentiment," she declared.