Cyclone Nisarga caused at least one sleepless night for Mumbai. The Media created awe and fear as none else can. The way it projected Cyclone Nisarga, caused sufficient concern. We cannot blame the media too. It was just relaying the data shared by the meteorological agencies. Maybe with a little bit extra dash of seasonings/ ‘masala’.
Some ‘smart alec’ (The Normal One) has also released a funny image. The image head-lined ‘Those most affected by Nisarga’. Under the caption is the logo of all the media houses. This was on Social Media. Sometimes seasonings can go overboard, to the point of insanity/ madness. But then, as some may perhaps unkindly or tongue-in-cheek, say, m.e.d.i.a. is something i.e. m.a.d.
Imagine the media not having advised the public about the Cyclone. Then the public would not have spared it, either. Accusing it of irresponsible ‘inertness’. Can Social be anti-social, sometimes? Possibly.
Mumbai/ Bombay, a big Bait for any self -respecting Cyclone
Readers will realize that Cyclone Nisarga was announced just a few days after Cyclone Amphan had rocked India. Amphan had damaged the other end of the country (Odisha/ West Bengal). The bad taste still lingered.
Cyclone Vardha which struck Chennai a few years earlier, had given enough proof of Nature’s fury. It showcased, how metros with their density of life and infrastructure are particularly vulnerable. Mumbai , India’s premier Metropolis and its financial capital has a GDP rivalling some European economies. Cyclones especially the kind that composed Nisarga are not very common on the Konkan/ Malabar Coast of India.
But this one seemed monstrous. It would surely have been a tantalising bait for any self-respecting cyclone. After all, it is not every week that low pressures build up in the western coast. That privilege (sometimes tragically) is more or less reserved for the Coromandel coast.
AmFine, says Nisarga; but am no Amphan
Mind you, Nisarga was no push-over. It was one of the healthiest cyclones that ever originated in the past few decades in the west coast. But Nisarga decided not to test Mumbaikars further. For Mumbai, already reeling under the Corona pandemic, Nisarga would have been one too many.
Special arrows, swords, weapons from our ‘ancient/ historical’ past have a special operating procedure. Once strung/ unsheathed etc, they cannot be unstrung/ sheathed easily. They needed to be used first. Cyclones too have to dissipate in some manner. Unfortunately, Nisarga caused some damage to life and property in Alibaug. But the silver lining is that Mumbai was spared. Chennai was wrecked by Nature. If a smaller city can be immobilized, Nisarga could have done far worse to Mumbai.
But some positivity we surely end with. Cyclone Nisarga proved to be just another chapter for Mumbai. Mumbaikars waited with bated breath and prayed. Nisarga granted Mumbai a much needed breather. The city may now truly release a huge sigh of relief. But strictly from behind masks, mind you!