Tuesday, June 29, 2010

You a South Indian?

Ok, so I'm back after ages. No net, no time blah blah, the usual happened with me. Anyway, many of you asked me to blog about my experience in Hyderabad and trust me, I had planned a lot for this yet another come back post of mine....I can tell you about the Idli wala who screamed at me for calling Kanchivaram idli as Kanchipuram idli for fun (Well, it was funny!!) I can talk about the ungrateful auto fellas who had faulty meters and treated me worse than he would have treated Osama Bin Laden, just because I wasn't from Hyd. I can make fun of the Hyderabadi Urdu- waich and itne mai-ich. I had a blast in Delhi and Mumbai but Hyderabad...not really! That one month made me feel like the outsider I was...Which I never felt in Delhi or Mumbai! Or even Ahmedabad, since I'm not a Gujarati, but people still somehow accepted me.


Why is it that we are so regionalistic? I've been brought up in A'bad, studied here and still studying in Gandhinagar. In my colony or school, people always started yapping with me in Gujarati and I replied back in pretty fluent Gujarati. But when they suddenly ask me, "Hey what's your surname?" And I say "Iyer". Their immediate reaction is "South Indian!" And they start stammering in broken English or accented Hindi. I mean, all this time they were comfortable with me talking in Gujarati, but when they found out I'm a Southie, psychologically they felt that my Gujarati sucked! Did this hurt me? This angered me!!

Whenever I go to Chennai, people are rude to me since it seems I don't look like a Tamilian. But yeah, when they find out I'm a Tamilian, they are all nice to me!!

There! I blame my own people also for this.
At my internship, my boss shoots questions like...

1) You Iyer or Iyengar? (I think I said my name is Madhuri Iyer)

2) You follow Tamil customs?(Err..WHAT?)

3) You understand Telugu?(Nope.)

4) Why don't you understand Telugu?(blank stare)

5) You should learn Telugu. (But Sir, I know Tamil, Gujarati, Hindi, English. And a bit of German. Enough of being multi lingual, don't you think?)

I also hate it when people talk in their regional language in front of an outsider. At my PG, this Marathi brigade yapped away in Marathi, the Telugu troope chepu-ed away in Telugu and I'm staring at the tasteless roti and raw karela curry wondering whether I should hold my nose and swallow the food to make it taste better. At my workplace, my bosses communicated in Telugu and even sometimes instructed us in Telugu. We were 4 internees who were non Hyderabadis and hence we could only gape at them.

Honestly, it's the same all over India. Being a South Indian, I would be the last person to blame our part of the country- but this is the problem. We ain't North Indians or South Indians. We are Indians and to conclude, woud like to quote what I read in a number of articles- If we call Australia racists then what are we?

P.S- My college best friend is a Telugu, and my school best friend is a Gujarati. So I don't discriminate because of whatever incidents I have faced till now- and I do not want anyone to take offence because of this post.

37 comments:

The Bald Guy said...

Geez I'm sorry you had to go through all that. Been there, seen that blah blah. Best is to ignore those idiots. They have half a pea sized brain anyways.

Aw.S.M said...

I for one actually liked Hyd during my time there..though like you said the autowaalas d rip the clothes of ur back if they could!...

Whether we like it or not..we r an absolute racist country. The Northies dont like the southies..the southies hate the northies..the east r insignificant and the west too vella..

Bangalore waale think they r cooler than the mallus n the tamilians...mumbaikars think the world revolves around em..delhities seem to know it all...and hence even if the economy doesnt flourish..racism sure does...

Nice post damsy..lets hope its an eye opener to many..

luv
amith

juhika said...

:D gud chhe! sorry abt d stay n d food! :( though i knew it all d time! :)just remembered hw i heard sumthng like "i dont like gujju gals. bt tum logo ki bhi galti nahi hai na. d mothers r like dat so d whole generation wil b like dat only!" dat woman was lucky 2 b a mom of 2 kids else i wud have slapped her if she was younger! :P dat was d only moment she should actually have been proud of her children's existence! :D such idiots make me realize how shallow sum of our citizens r n wat a pathetic new generation dey r raising! :| dont say dat i dont comment nw!

ANWESA said...

Sadly,I've to agree to what you went through. We don't think like a nation.

peter said...

Russel Peters : We say Americans are racists, but let me tell you the truth, Americans are not racists they will hate people if they think, that those people are going to harm them. But Indians are racists ..Americans Hate Arabs, Indians Hate each other.

Indian 1: hey bro u an indian ?
Indian 2: Yeah ! are u an indian too ? where in India ?
Indian 1 : X part ..
Indian 2 : Alright mufo dun talk to me :P ..

u shud see the way he does it =)

But on a serious note ..do i need to mention ..how is it in Hyd and in South or Even in North for that matter, I mean the most ridiculous thing i have ever seen is Delhi dudes asking North east..girls "wherz ur Visa?" :| :|

It's Bad it's Evil !

U can call me your attorney said...

Well, you mentioned my favourite topic which I would always like to openly discuss and smack on the faces of those,I spent considerable time with,trying to figure out..."are they talking about me?my clothes?my books?my habits?my other frens?my laptop?my music choice..."

You stepped on a pretty sensitive point..that involves our friends, our foes, our peers, superiors and juniors..and IPL :|
so here I stop,else i can go on n on n on about it :P

Trinaa said...

Thank you for this!

Bengalis and South Indians are the worst when it comes to talking in their own language. I'd know, since I'm part Bong and have stayed in Chennai for a year. It's like you are diseased if you don't know the local language.

But it's pretty much the same all over our country. We make fun of any community outside of ours.

So much for being secular, tolerant and a peaceful democracy. :x

What's in a name? said...

Yea maddy, ur rite but u know there are some places where they accept you half heartedly. Now those places suck coz you can't even abuse them left right and center :P They say Lukewarm acceptance is more bewildering than outright rejection. Anyhow, that does not make what happened with you any less enraging. The issue is ongoing and I don't think it would change, maybe we can take our own little steps here. So I know for one that a lot of south indian guys go like " OHHHHHh You're from DELHI "" "dilli ki ladkiyan..bla bla" I actually feel like saying in total dilli style...terii maa ki :P :P but then no right, look how we all got along and that rajputani queen sneha :P :P So thats what - we can make the world a better place in our own small world ! :) :) Hope things change someday !

What's in a name? said...

Okay and yes :P :P I strongly hate people talking on facebook in regional languages especially when 5 other greeks (being us who dont get what they are saying) are involved and getting spammed. Dude !! People are so pissing off sometimes :D :D ahhhh....

Akansha Agrawal said...

Oh tell me about it... I face this Marathi brigade all the time!!! :| Even though I do understand it in bits and pieces, but still... when they say it the way they do, with an accent and with all the speed, it is pretty unintelligible!

And you know what, wherever we went in Singapore n Malaysia, those people went out of their way to help us... Even when we were talking to the local people and they didn't know English, they always pointed us to the right place... :-w

I never see that happening in our own country... and now I have enough warnings about Hyd autowaalas, if I happen to go there, I'm staying away from them! :|

kuldeep said...

well mads i'm not surprised to know u've faced such things but I'm happy tht u raised this issue here...!! I guess every Indian would have faced it n so do I have.. People just from my name perceive tht I'm a punjabi(I'm not).. but the moment people know I'm a sindhi they start asking me if I'm from pakistan.. (no damn it, i'm not..) I was born in ahmedabad n hav been brought up in ahmd too. my Dad was born in Ahmd too.. my grand father came to gujarat in 1945 from sindh(a part of pakistan now, but then it was a part of British India).. is tht not enough to consider i'm an Indian..? still every sindhi faces this question atleast once in their life..even most of people hav a wrong perception tht sindhi is a religion, its a language as any other.. I'm a sindhi brahmin n yet people ask me hw a sindhi can be a brahmin? of course he can be...!!
We call ourself as a secular nation but I pity to say We are not...

Abhinav said...

Hii Mads..

Hope you had a gud time back there in Hyd. Few glitches here and there is obv.

:) Hope u also made some good frnds there. How is Akhila?

Shimmer said...

i know what ur saying, being a tamil/chennaiite and not looking like one has its disadvantages!
they sell items to us in higher prices, higher auto fare.. and if ur a muslim ur automatically known to be an'urdu' speaking person. abt time they realise there are pure tamil speakin muslims! oh well!
nice post :)

enchantinganki said...

i can so relate with ur post!! I am convent educated and with almost everyone around being south indian.I kinda faced hell lot of problems.I guess, its evrywhr! In india, we will have to change our attitude or else we all are same!!

Prabhu Dutta Das said...

Yes, I remember the best friend and you running up for the telugu dance number- aahhh ante amlapuram in DAIICT.

Now I know you are from Chennai.

All news!

pRasad said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
pRasad said...

I am from North India & staying in Chennai for last few months.
I did not find any discrimination even thought I don't know Tamil ..So my experience is opposite to yours..

I agree with you that it's irritating when two people speak in their own language.. I am experiencing this in Chennai.. Two Tamils will speak only in Tamil.

Shalini said...

Hehe, well what do you know!! I go through the same thing...Shalini Subramanian, born and brought up in Delhi.
My Chennai experience was 'ugh!' because I dont look like and neither sound like a south indian.
But people in Delhi are good, most of them think im a punjabi but when they find out im not, they gape in shock for a sec but then its all fine...
Loved this post btw...

Priya Joyce said...

This post is an echo of wat i've been feeling since yrs...

the only prob is...ppl dun accept me here in Rajasthan n tey also dun accept me as a mallu ter in Kerala...
So tats irony! :P

hitesh rawat said...

i can relate to this.......i have been working with this firm in bangalore and my team has a bunch of Mallu's ......me being from Uttrakhand......can't even understand when they talk in Mallu......but still they'll invite me to lunch or tea with them.....when i don't even get to talk ......among them......and PS it's not like they don;t know hindi or english.....they are pretty good with that too.....but still they don't wanna talk that ......it feels as if they are conspiring against me...in front of me............


It's a funny world out here......i can't promise that wat they are doing with me.....i wouldn't have done.....if they were in my home town......

it's a long discussion with no conclusion .....

Kartz said...

Boy do I relate to that...

Ah well, 've learnt to give a rat's @*$€ to such loons.

As 'peter' mentioned above, Russell Peters was spot on in his take on Indian mentality.

God save.

Peace. Have a nice day.

I'll try 2 be truthful said...

Auto drivers rig their meters in all parts of our country, atleast that unites us . hmph :X

You know we used to get transferred very frequently and after a point of time I got fed up of telling people "where I belonged to". let them assume anything.

some thought marathi, some marwari, some bihari, etc etc


I will take your tip and when I got to tamil/telegu- pradesh I will say I'm a tamilian too.

Actually I won't and play rumpel-stilt-skin with them!!.

And yes doing khus-phus in a different language is irksome :x

you know what you should do, as soon as the people on the same table start their "secret meeting" you can 'imitate' them and start doing 'phhhoo shoooo khich pich" loudly!

huh! like they say being literate has not made everyone educated.

♥ Chocolate lover ♥ said...

AWWWWW >_<

Nidz said...

O my my. I wish Hyd wud have been better to u .
I never have prob. Like i m marvari but we never get starry eyes frm Nepalese :|

Prianca said...

This is such a true post mads.
Though I have never experienced any regionalism...but that's because i've never stepped outta delhi for work/clg....but I do see ppl here discriminating all day long.
sucks, i know
just ask them to get well soon, the next time they try to look down upon any person who is not from their "region"
and keep blogging.

I'll try 2 be truthful said...

OK Now that it's decided that we can't hide our <3 any more and have to meet, let me enlist things which I have to learn from you.

1. Smiley Dictionary.
2.Take good self pics.
3.How to Kick Ass. :D
4. Some lawyer tricks.
5.How to manage both social and e-life. :D :D

I will think of more things :P

ps: Thanx for the pictoretto thing.

The Guy said...

So I am a Bong...and I have been In most of the major cities like Chennai, Mumbai, Bangalore. But never been to Hyd.

Frankly speaking, half of the population here in Kolkata speak Hindi these days. Those who are saying Bongs discriminate in local language, just have never been down the streets. I mean even though I am a hardcore bengali, and yes of course look like one, I get questions asked in Hindi all the time whenever I am out. people ask for direction in hindi, they tell me "Dus rupay huya hai" when I ask"Koto hoeche?"(kitna hua).. Language is not a bias in here..and In a lil more educated places they all speak in English.

Anyways...I've been through Bangalore also, they were well if not good, not that Bad too. I could well understand roads and directions, and people would tell, people would co-operate, even if I buy Juice! But autos in bangalore I tell you, they killed me financially!!

But yeah in chennai I saw people only talking in regional Lingo,and not co-operating. I was made to wait outside a store for half an hour, where I went to buy a pen, just because I spoke hindi when everyone was speaking Tamil maybe! :P

What would I have done? Speak in Bengali??? o.O

Vinnie said...

Hey MAds, i didnt know this problem exists even outside Chennai!
i have an irritating 2 years at Chennai...was forced to learn Tamil for pure survival:)

hows u girl...long time no see;)

I'll try 2 be truthful said...

likethis?!

Mads said...

Ramit- yeah that they are. They still deserved this post :X

Myth- you dissected entire India :P
thanks Myth :D

Juhika- That's the way the world is. And you commented only on this post for your own mala fide interest =|

Mads said...

Anvesa- :( yeah..

Peter- Russel Peters ka thing was mast. I must watch it.
It's evil and it's never gonna be solved :(

Chitwan- :P :P :P Lol :P

Mads said...

Trinaa- i know!! :( sucks :(

Swati- Lukewarm acceptance is more bewildering than outright rejection.-- i loved this. It's such an awesome dialogue. Yeah. We can make the change...but only if we want to :)

Akansha- lol i can write a book on Hyd autowale ;) and well, foreigners are more helpful than meeting an Indian when u are abroad :( so weird naa? :(

Mads said...

Kuldeep- Whoa. I never knew that. Thanks for sharing your experience. An eye opener to us all...


Abhinav- Yeah! But I had a nice time. Akhila is in love now. Come on gtalk, will tell you about her...

Mads said...

Shimmer- lol :P hi5 at that ;)

Vinnie said...

i have nothing to say....i just love to read all of u!!

dont spam me, Mataji
or I'LL SUE YOU :) :)

looking for maya said...

hilarious .. of course nt when u get the bummers .. sad you dint find Hyd fun .. guess you couldnt venture out much ...being a blorean am alwys an outsider in Hyd ..

kunwar said...

Yayy...Delhi rox :P
Atleast we dont have any communication barriers in Delhi :P
Official work is always done in English or Hindi and even if sometimes Punjabi is used, which is very rare, It is very easy to understand if you pay attention.
I'm a Punjabi so I know...
Also, stereotyping exists but only in minor proportions, and you are not really expected to know the regional language, as the requirement is not there. One of my best friends is a Sikh and hell he cant speak one word in Punjabi :P