Monday, April 30, 2012


You believe in people all right. But, how much trust is worth taking the risk? In a public place? Especially when the public place in question is a place which has seen its fair share of terror activities and violence.

During my recent trip to Guwahati, Assam, I was intrigued to observe a peculiar phenomenon – the helmets. Helmets are almost compulsory in Guwahati, though not everyone wears them. But, those who have helmets, after parking the bike on roadside, they’d place the helmet on the top of the rear-view mirror and leave. Without locking it, and without the worry that someone might just walk up, pick up the helmet and leave. Sure, there were a few who locked theirs. But, majority of them were just being careless about it.

When I saw my cousin do the same, I asked him if he wasn’t worried that his helmet may be stolen. “Who’d steal an old helmet?” he asked me. “Even if they do, it’s not a big deal. It’s just Rs 400.” Money is fine, but this nonchalance? Where does it come from? It is because of an implicit trust that there are no helmet thieves in Guwahati?

Whatever may be the reason, I’m intrigued by the phenomenon.

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