In Chink land

Author: crasiezt

I was going to make this post about the beauty of Gangtok-I was there for a holiday and loved it! The pictures say it all don’t they?

But this isn’t gonna be about my experience while rafting down the Teesta river, or the fact that I could see the moon at 12 pm, or the Chinese soldiers at the border (Nathu La pass) who were dying to take pictures with me *it was hilarious*. The highlight is not the ICL team’s players whom I saw at the airport, or watching the sun set at 5 pm every day, or even a pollution-free Gangtok devoid of traffic jams. My post is about car drivers…

About 30 odd cars (Innova and Tavera) and their drivers were at our service for 6 days, and we made complete use of them. Most of our day was usually spent in travelling to far off places on twisted roads with hair-pin bends. Hats off to the drivers for being so wonderful. Plus, they were really friendly and gave us a lot of information about the place. And every time I requested, they played latest Hindi/Punjabi songs on the stereo at a really high volume!

But little did I know that they were being treated like filth. On the last day my car’s driver was telling me what he and the others had to endure during the 6 days there-HELL. They were promised rooms to stay in, but didn’t get any. In that cold weather they used to sleep in their respective cars. There was 1 bathroom for them, but no water in there; they hadn’t showered for SIX whole days! Plus, they weren’t even given any food, even though they were told that food would be provided. They were left to fend for themselves. And the one time they were given, it was the previous day’s leftovers. No wonder they gave all the cheese sandwiches to the monkeys on the roads instead!

I can’t understand this inhuman behavior. Not even water for showers? How pathetic is that? Here I was relishing my chocolate soufflé and taking several helpings of the fried fish for dinner, while they ate badly made momos to fill their stomach.

In a Capitalist society we exploit those who we can. True. And it’s probably fair too. But this kind of disgusting treatment is beyond me. They are working bloody hard and deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, not like beggars at traffic signals.

*This was written in October 2008..posted a little late


27 Responses to “In Chink land”

  1. Gonecase

    Oye, the picture is good and you are looking HAPPENING, hehe !! Ab mudde ki baat, teri uthayi hui baat thik hai par for some reason, drivers ka naam sun kar mujhe yahan ke cab drivers yaad aate hain aur mera khoon khaulne lagta no sympathy from my side. Ye sab sochne ke liye bade social activists, samaj sevak hain is duniya mein !!

  2. Bogged

    I remember a taxi driver rob me of 500 bucks in Bombay! I was almost stranded in the night and had to go to Pune!@Gonecase reminds me of that!
    Though I feel bad about the plight of the drivers I cannot do anything about it, but for reassurances:
    1. Cars are generally warmer as you have the hot engine heating it up, along with the superb room-effect of the stereo.
    2. You don't want to take a bath in the cold when you know you can go back home in a few days and enjoy a nice warm shower!
    3. Cheese sandwich makes you feel sleepy while you drive.
    4. When you try to find food for yourself in those terrains, sometimes you come across people selling cheap liquor, which the drivers loved I am sure!

    Don't get me wrong...they are "reassurances" just as I said!

  3. Shailesh Mishra

    Now I see where your new profile pic came from - looking good too (Though I haven't really seen or known you to judge on your pics but still)...

    And about the cab drivers, hmmm.. uh... ah! It's a Dog eat Dog world out there. I am on neutral grounds here. Not that I hate or like Cab drivers but the world itself has a lot of under privileged people and not just North Eastern cab drivers.

    Though I don't believe with what others bloggers say about. If you wanna see the change - go ahead and make the difference. Don't shrug your humane responsibilities for Activists and NGOs'. You might not be able to change the world but you can make one person happy for a day and that's gonna make a difference for him.

  4. Keshi

    ur looking great in that new pic!

    whatever we say or do, there'll always be few ppl who will never know what HUMANITY is.


  5. Southpaw unplugged

    U've gotta fantastic page here...

  6. Nefariousoutlook

    been to gangtok twice in the past two years...wonderful place..Nathula pass is an amazing place...the chineese gaurds i must say use the best of the cameras to shoot pictures.. and yeah they do shoot the complete video of people coming till the border from the top level security post:) yeah and as your rightly pointed out the time taken to reach these far off places is much longer than the time your spend there :)

    the taxi drivers are badly treated, maybe..they have their own arrangements made already.. they all have a common dorm where they can sleep in the is right next to the taxi stand. i found that out cause that is where we found a guy to take back 6 of our drunk friends back to the hotel after a night out partying :)
    other than that ...the taxi drivers charge you enough and yeah taking bath in that cold a climate is not really necessary :)

  7. Khuman Ngakpa

    Your picture is good but, the title is bit discriminatory because it's a slang. This people hate to be called like this. I hope you get this by this time.

    Many of the driver / servant are treated very badly. This is very common in India. Such un-orgnanized profession are not treated well. You can contribute your part by treating your maid-servants well. Lead by example.

  8. Beauty and the BEast

    hey! that sounded like a fantastic vacation!! But what a sad thought to end the vacation on....

    A human mind will never comprehend inhuman behaviour. But for those who embrace inhumanity, they really are doing nothing out of the ordinary...

  9. Prakhar

    Gangtok doubt abt that..went there some 5 years back...really wanna go one more time..missed Nathu La last time..

    ***In a Capitalist society we exploit those who we can. True. And it’s probably fair too***
    ...fair only if some level of human decency is maintained..this is really horrible..nd sad..

    ..welcome back :)

  10. Vinni

    we had gone for a road trip when i was very young to shimla from delhi. my dad made it a point to ensure that the driver was treated well by the hotel staff.
    our driver too was moved by our generosity. somethings you learn from your parents always stay with you.

  11. Mystique Wanderer

    nebody want to take a bet...that a civil uprising is not more than two years away...

  12. Shrav

    Shit mahn! :(:( It so happens everywhere! IT happens a lot in Arab countries where Indians are treated like slaves without salaries and all ..

    All they gain outta doing such things is money.


  13. Reeta Skeeter


    Bahut jaldi post kiya wah wah!

  14. rebel_on_loose

    I was in Gangtok few years back and I'm sure you would've enjoyed the scenic views.
    As for the treatment meted out to the drivers here, I heard it first hand from our driver on my trip to Ladakh.

    He said he could now accurately guess how he would be treated by the region/age groups of the visitors...
    e.g. he said the europeans and young Indian execs were the generous ones,while Israelis and Indian family tours were the biggest misers.

    The thing which really disturbed me was the way they were treated by their employers... our driver took us from Manali to Leh -22 hours of journey through freezing temperatures, mountain sickness@ 16,000 ft and not to mention the treacherous Ice covered roads and gorges, and poor guy had 2 more trips back to back lined up from Leh to Manali and back!
    On top of that, we paid 6000 bucks for the cab out of which he would land a paltry 1000 for putting his life@risk!
    Now THAT was inhuman !!

  15. Keshi

    btw come check out my Marriage biodata girl!


  16. Bhai with Chai

    //They are working bloody hard and deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, not like beggars at traffic signals.

    this is exactly what it has come down to.. people workin hard remain neglected as beggars are *donated* money araam se.. It's like people have this feelin of charity while doin that! but when it comes to paying someone adeqautely for their services.. people crib!

    beyond me!

  17. unforgiven

    Coming here after a LONG time. Glad to see you're still writing.

  18. Anonymous

    Wow, the pictures sure look great. Regarding the drivers, I mean, isn't it up to us to make them comfortable? Make sure they've eaten and have enough warm necessities to pass the night?

  19. Anonymous

    Gangtok is a beautiful place. I have just been there once. It was in 2007 march. We had a great time visiting the Nathula pass, eating the local cuisine and sipping gallons of local Dansberg beer.

    It is sad how we treat employees in our country. I can relate to it as I feel strongly for it. Anyways there are better employers too.

    Cheers and take care...

  20. Pranav Kumar V

    Feeling dry after reading this!!

    Don't know why people make it to be such a big thing to at least look at other beings living around them as human!! Its not the way I pretend to be but, wherever I go, I look at these people just as any guest at home (well within permissible limits though!!) If someone wants to take an undue advantage of this, good for him. but, I have nothing to lose either, nothing of quality!!

    Ok, I'll leave this at that!!

    See you when I see you... :)

  21. niceguy251


    First visit to your space. Read all available posts. I will mention few of them specially though all were engrossing. Why????, Broken- and healed, Losers, Whatttt ( about loser in train ), Unending woes and Picture of misery. The last one should be an eye opener to present day people. I could write so much on each but I will confine just to say you write well and with lot of personal emotions. Sorry, you got mugged but it can happen to anyone anytime. I have had my pocket picked twice inspite of being so cautious. About treatment meted out to the drivers,it is a pity.

    It will be nice if you can find time to visit me here, I write under the same name or I would rather prefer if you visit where I started blogging

    as most of posts are there. Please try to read as many as you can. I would appreciate your comments.

    Take care

  22. Satanic Angel

    am not surprised..sadly in india sometimes i feel even the animals are treated better, at least we have animal rights' activists, peta n more such organisations..unlike the almost-extinct-rare-animal species humans are so many in numbers and all are treated like shit..but wen it comes to drivers i've had real bad expereiences here down south, they treat the passengers like shit man!

  23. Express

    okay so i din read this one

    and now when i did, I am left speechless.

    I wud just say,
    I second bhai on this one.

  24. Pranay

    Hey craziest. I visited Gangtok some time back as well...wonderful place..brought back the memories a bit.
    And I am with you in this one...All for the power of the individual but it is not cool when someone is treated unfairly for the benefit of a few. Morals still seem higher than success. May be I am old fashioned. Even beggars don't deserve to be treated inhumanly.
    Baaki, Nice pic.:)

  25. Anand

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  26. Anand

    U hv had a whole load of comments so Ill jus be short n' sweet and jus say..I agree with u.
    The fact is is absolutey unfair. Yet..if u observe closely..there's a pattern to it and a design made for just that topic.
    No I'm not thinking deep. It's clear once u know the logic.
    I'll visit u some more.
    Anand. :-)

  27. Princess Mia

    hey babes...awesome pics....n what kinda holiday was that....n its a pity that we treat ppl who help us like slaves inne.....

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