A free for all

In these days of media activism and unbridled press freedom which virtually covers everything under the sun, especially after the advent of the Sun, we in News Today thought it prudent to sail with the tide instead of being left out. So I welcome all our readers to join the bandwagon, so that we too can take a few of you for a ride.

Accordingly, in tune with the times, we hereby announce our own bundle of prizes aimed at increasing the circulation…of blood to your brains, which is presently clogged by greed and avarice.

But a word of caution before we unravel our Diwal Dhamaka, as it is always better to settle the ground rules clearly, especially in such ‘games of chance’. For starters, none of the gifts will be taken back, even if you are virtually dying to return them. You will understand the rationale behind this precaution once we unravel our scheme.

We would also like to caution that the amount, collected for the ticket, sorry, Malar, will not be refunded, in case the ball falls in a different court, other than ours (we too sit on judgement on all and sundry frequently). Though we generally prefer to pass the buck, we are not sure if we want to pass this one, as it is quite a windfall.

We are also not responsible if the sponsors of the gifts fail to deliver them and our liability stops with announcing the winners and publishing their photographs in our next edition. It is upto to the ‘winners’ to take up the question of gifts with the sponsors and we wish them luck.

We however guarantee that the lottery, pardon, lucky dip will be conducted as promised and we also give our solemn word, which are as credible as our investigative reports, that none of our own people’s names would be picked as the winners. Needless to add, our declaration of winners is final and binding on all, except us. That is either way, we win, but then that is press freedom.

Having ‘mutually’ agreed on these very reasonable ground rules, we now unfold our grand scheme, which could be a bonanza to you while the ‘token’ Rs.100, which is the non-refundable cover price of the special issue will come as your small contribution towards our fight for press freedom. Here goes our unique Diwal, sorry, Diwali Super Sucker offer for the readers.

Maruti cars, or for that matter, all cars are passe. In this jet-set age it is only appropriate for our high-flying readers to reach out for the sky. It would also be symbolic, for sky is the limit for their greed for anything given free of cost. Our first prize for that lucky winner is a latest model helicopter fitted on top with the fans that cools the best. The winner, of course, will have to buy the battery himself. We recommend two pen sized ones. We also caution them not to drop the helicopter as there is no guarantee for any free service.

A free trip for hundred winners follows. The jaunt is to the jungles of Veerappan where the host will take them as hostages, and will treat them to sumptuous meal consisting of cockroaches, lizards and sundry other delicious items that his hooded-lums can get their hands on.

An added attraction is the video coverage and readers can act out negotiations with the dreaded outlaw and discuss surrenders and amnesty. A moustached journo from our newspaper will accompany them to guide them through the thickets, and so they need no visas to enter the brigand’s domain. The police do, which is why they don’t venture into the thickets.

 We do not believe in clothes..no, no, sorry, not the Rajneesh stuff. What I meant was that we believe only in yarn, which we spin day in and day out. Readers of our special issue will find quite a volume yarn leaping out of the pages that they would even think it is Lord Krishna in there, reeling it out to give Draupadi a helping hand.

The continuous flow of such home-spun yarn, indeed a speciality of the media, is sure to mesmerise the readers so much that they may even forget their clothes and food. But then who needs roti, kapda or makkan when we, the press, offer you so much food for dirty thoughts, endless yarn and ceiling-less promises?

What is a prize scheme without promises of housing plots? Well, we too offer fantastic roomspace, but not on Mother Earth. Not on the moon either for I am told that Armstrong already holds the patta. For those who have heard of cyberspace, it would be easy to understand our concept of cypherspace, where we allot space in mid air…so that you can build castles in the air! Sky is the limit for the number of such prizes.

There are also several other prizes. Every issue of the special Malar will be accompanied by a vial of poison, but the readers are sure to find that it tastes sweet as it comes free of cost. A drink that stinks will also come along in a sachet plus a tweezer for the other man’s nose, the other man being your critic or a neighbour. The stinking drink and the tweezer will ensure that no one gets nosey about our grand schemes and tries to move the court for injections, sorry, injunctions.

A real teeth of a dead actress will be a bonus addition and the readers can bite into a tasty story on the late lamented heart throb’s food habits besides trying to guess her waist size and such other vital national issues, a truly laudable pursuit when compared to the mundane debates on things like CTBTs, coalitions, stock markets et al.

Each of the winners, to be picked by an actress, will get a flying kiss from her and they are allowed to reciprocate similarly. They can also kiss their money and good sense goodbye along with.

So waste no time, but rush right away for our Diwal(i) Dhamaka offer, join the stampede and get trampled upon before the blindfolded goddess tilts the scales…against us!

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Jawahar T R