Even before India can send its first manned mission into space, a certain B Gopalakrishnan from Kerala has booked a slot for the first Indian to go to the moon. No, not himself but a certain Gopalakrishnan nevertheless.
This gentleman, B Gopalakrishnan is the spokesperson of the BJP in Kerala and he has decided it will be his namesake A Gopalakrishnan, as in filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan who should be sent to the moon.
This is no fun story. In fact, there is nothing funny about it. B Gopalakrishnan was upset with A Gopalakrishnan for being one of the 49 signatories to the letter written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi condemning mob lynching in the name of Lord Shri Ram slogans.
“If Adoor cannot bear the name of Lord Rama being called out, he should register his name at Sriharikota and take a journey to Moon,” wrote B Gopalakrishnan on his Facebook page.
The National award winning filmmaker cheekily retorted that he would undertake the journey “if someone gifted him a ticket”.
Two things are obvious here. Pakistan has become an overcrowded space and in any case, India’s north-western neighbour is a choice more for those from the Hindi heartland.
Keralites obviously see the earth’s natural satellite as a more back of beyond locale to banish people to. Trust Keralites to know destinations better than most. And Adoor, the BJP leader would sympathetically reckon, won’t even feel homesick, what with ISRO’s Chandrayaan 1 mission discovering water on the lunar surface. It won’t be the same feel as Kerala’s backwaters but Adoor will adjust.
Two, this is in sync with a meme doing the rounds that shows a Malayalee’s chai kada (tea shop) greeting Chandrayaan 2 when it lands on the South pole of the moon.