He was history’s worm. Before going mad, he had held among historians a very prestigious position. He had directed many important projects for the National History Research Council, and had written many books.
He lost his mind a few years ago when riots occurred after the destruction in Ayodhya.
His insanity was such that, for a long time, people didn’t even notice it. He just kept talking, profoundly, armed with every historical fact.
But then he would suddenly sing in full voice, `Hindus in Pakistan, Gangus in Hindustan!’
After that, whenever someone asked him who he was, he would say, `I am Gangu. You, too, are Gangu. All of us living here are Gangus.’ Then he would belt out his song again. And then people knew, he had lost it.
But I had read somewhere that the thought process of madmen was like pure mathematics or the harmony of musical tones – that’s why, people usually cannot understand it. If we gave the thoughts of the insane our thorough attention and really worked hard, we would be able to understand their opaque reasoning. In the article I had read was a list of the names of many people considered insane but who were in fact geniuses. The author had even attributed this kind of reasoning to the three holes Newton made for his three cats.
In any event, one day I found him. Alone.
I asked him what his song meant -- `Hindus in Pakistan, Gangus in Hindustan’.
Surprisingly, he answered my question in an extremely poised, serious and calm manner. He said, `Tell me, those people, or the people of that civilization, who resided on the banks of the Indus River, what name did foreigners give them?’
`Hindus,’ I said.
`And where is the Indus now?’ He asked.
`In Pakistan,’ I replied.
`So this means that if foreigners arrived today on the north-western frontier, whom would they call Hindus?’
`Those who live in Pakistan.’
He smiled and asked me further. `Okay, now tell me. In our country what is the oldest, largest and most important river?’
`Ganga,’ I answered, after thinking a bit.
`So what would the foreigners have called us?’
I pondered at the question, and it took me some time.
Then he himself said, `As far as I can figure out, they would have called us Gangus.’
Then he closed his eyes and became immersed in his song.
I considered it carefully, but I could find no indication of illogical or anarchical reasoning in what he said. So, I suddenly found myself in the purely mathematical rationale of a mad historian’s thoughts.
From that day on, whenever someone asks me who I am, I say, `I am Gangu. You too are Gangu.This entire region from Uttar Pradesh to Bihar , which is called the Doab, is in fact Gangu Pradesh .
Lately you must have seen this slogan written on many walls of the city :
SAY WITH PRIDE
WE ARE GANGUS
I myself am the author .
If you feel that I too have gone mad, then please, kindly drop a postcard in favour of my home address. Someone from my village will come and take me away from here. But until then,it's time to sing