Sunday, November 6, 2011

Acronyms and Acrimony

    In one of Chetan Bhagat's more readable novels, 2 States, the protagonist Krish Malhotra is on board to a marriage hall named Arulmigu Kapaeleeswar Thirumana Mandapam, and has almost 50 letters to it. He struggles on the streets and finally reaches the venue, based in Chennai, thanks to the locals. Guess what, the locals to called it AKKT Mandapam.
   It seems Tamilians love to keep complicated names but in the end clutter it up and simplify them...

   2 States was published in 2009. Today, look across any daily, newspaper, magazine or news source and you find dozens of bizarre acronyms, ready to take you back to your brainy part. It's not only the choultries, chatrams, but also the politicians like MGR or NTR.

   And yes, how do you explain the reference to NaMo as Narendra Modi? NaMo(meaning 'bow down') sounds more like the Tatas' Nano car, whose main plant was shifted to Gujarat following agitation against it in West Bengal. Why, I wondered, to keep a short name for a person who has name with twelve fine letters in it?

   Is it to avoid confusion with similiar Former IPL Chairman Lalit Modi, who keeps appearing in the news for being controversial in cricket matters? Or is it a sign of Indian political unity to assign abbrievations?

    Acronyms are always preferable to acrimony!

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