Wildlife on butcher’s weighing scale!

As a young kid, I remember watching my mother spread food grains over a piece of cloth under the sun. Sun drying of various food grains like rice, wheat and few others used to be a common activity in every Indian household. It was such a pleasure to watch especially because grains spread under the sun attracted birds.

Unlike today’s generation who are hooked to mobile games; for a kid grown up during 80’s and 90’s, watching household activities was sort of an entertainment. I always watched these birds curiously as they would walk all over the spread, relentlessly moving their head, scanning the entire spread of food grains and diligently choosing their food. When they came across a stone or any inedible stuff, they would vigilantly ignore and move ahead. Once they are done, they would happily fly away and mostly come back when they needed.

At this moment in time of corona outbreak, every one of us would have definitely read about wildlife farming. Well, wildlife farming is the act of raising non-domesticated animals such as tiger, pangolin, and wild boar to name a few, in an agricultural setting mostly for human consumption, decorative and medicinal purpose. In farm setting, offspring is produced by inbreeding where mating is done between genetically identical individuals (like siblings or close cousins). And that is the reason why farm animals have very weak immunity and are usually not instinctive as the wild varieties (like the broiler chickens or the tigers that you could find in places like tiger temple (Kanchanburi, Thailand). Even today in India marriage between close cousins is forbidden for the risk of hidden genetic disorders being developed in future generations.

And yes, one of the purposes of wild life farming happens to be human consumption and at this point I am reminded of those conscious birds that chose their food carefully. It now seems to me that they knew all that they could digest and all that are edible! We, human beings, who are supposed to be the most intelligent animals on earth, are somewhere failing to even make this simple distinction. As a result, we are often gifted with newer zoonotic diseases such as SARS, MERS. Probably, we will be posed with many more if we let go off ‘humane’ from human beings then all that we will be left with is just ‘being’.

I was always taught since my childhood that wild animals are very furious hunters and now the present day kids would be learning the same too. However, I foresee that kids in the near future would in turn question that if wild animals are furious hunters and human beings are exploiting them; then shouldn’t human beings be called wild animals?

Now when I look back, I hear the cries of all those ladies who would yell at the birds ‘all my grains have been eaten away’, yet somewhere they had the satisfaction of feeding the innocents. And those were the times when wild animals were being watched in movies or channels like NGC or Animal planet. My heart goes for those notorious birds who grabbed their food and stealthy wild animals who would roam freely in wild jungle, both of which are on the verge of extinction.

Nevertheless, it is our responsibility to let these animals live in wild and their birthright to freely roam in jungles but undeniably not to be weighed on butcher’s weighing scale.



One fine morning, like any other day, I began my day waiting for a city service bus at the bus stop. After waiting for couple of minutes, I boarded a bus to reach my workplace which is about an hour away from my residing place. Having gotten into a pretty crowded bus, I somehow managed to find a little place to stand, though uncomfortably. Bus continued through its way like a snail, moving bumper to bumper which is an everyday scene in our busy and crowded ‘Namma Bengaluru’.

A passenger was seated comfortably on a seat adjacent to me whom I envied for a moment. Fortunately, soon I found vacating her seat which I caught eagerly like an eagle catching its prey. Though, I had just crossed two stops, it felt like I was standing since ages in those long stretches of still vehicles waiting for those traffic signals to turn green. Having found a seat, I sat and began to enjoy with great relief to my tired legs.

Like every other day, I took a novel out from my bag and started to read. I usually prefer to use travel time to read to avoid boredom and frustration caused by traffic jams. As I continued reading, a man appeared in the scene standing next to my seat and handed a bag over to me. Handing over their luggage to people who are seated is common in Bengaluru so that they can stand freely in crowded buses.

Slowly, I found this man standing next to me leaning towards my seat which made it difficult for me to sit. Uncomfortable feeling started to build up in me and I started making faces to show my irritation but I never looked up at him. Soon I realized that it was not just me who had a feeling of irritation and a bit of anger too but people standing around that eccentric man too shared the same feelings. This man was annoying almost everybody in the bus with some strange sounds which was literally noise for me.

That morning’s center of attraction, a middle-aged man’s notorious act continued for a long time yelling at people, making alien sounds. By the time, we reached close to my destination with just two stops away from my workplace, a lady seated next to me vacated her seat. Unfortunately, I found this man finding his way to the vacant seat next to me. Having seated comfortably, he made peculiar action and sound at me and that’s when for the first time I lifted up my head to look at him to understand what this man is up to. To my shock and surprise, I found that this man is mute yet trying to talk to every creature in the bus. Coming into my senses, I understood through his actions that he was asking me for time. I found myself stuck with words in my throat with practically no words escaping my mouth, I just showed him my watch with a smile. After answering his query, he was ready to put forth his next question to continue the conversation which I answered with smile and a nod but not a single word. As I had reached my destination and got up to alight, he bid me farewell with an enthusiastic and a million-dollar smile. In turn, I threw my poor smile at him and nodded my head in reply to his wishes for the day. After alighting, I stood at the platform turning back again and again to look at this man and found that he was eagerly waiting for his meeting with another stranger.

Though, my meeting with this man was just for few minutes, he had left me with awakening thoughts. For the rest of the day, I kept wondering who is indeed MUTE. What had sounded like a noise to me a few minutes ago, had turned zealous and anger faded. In this fast and busy life where we are isolating ourselves from our own people, I found this Archangel reminding us with our extra-ordinary quality of SPEECH and it hit over my head reminding me to use it before it turns vestige.