PUBLISHED: 20:28 GMT, 1 November 2012 | UPDATED: 21:56 GMT, 1 November 2012
Two paise may not have any significance for the financial institutions guiding our economy, but it wields tremendous influence on the lives of ordinary citizens.
Two paise is the price at which a human being goes on auction in the information market.
Incidentally, 2 paise is also what Hindi speakers use to take a reality check on life.
Haven’t you heard of the phrase do paise ki aukaat (stature worth 2 paise)? Crude as it may sound, the phrase holds a literal meaning in the virtual world.
The ease with which brokers put up our personal information – bank account, car details, loan amount etc – on sale for companies, makes it clear that the privacy we so vehemently protect is nothing but a sham.
And no matter how much we fool ourselves with the security claims of the government, we are exposed to threats of all kind for a price of 2 paise.
Talking of Hindi phrases, consider do paise ki akal nahin hai (mind not even worth 2 paise).
It perhaps explains the authorities’ ineptitude in dealing with phone brokers and bulk SMS providers.
The government will do well to apply do paise ki akal and use the database of the brokers for its various population registration programmes such as census, UID and NPR.
The brokers seem to have more accurate data than government agencies. As for our harried telecom minister Kapil Sibal, here’s some muft ki rai (free advice): Please don’t waste your time reporting pesky SMS texts to TRAI‘s ‘do not disturb’ facility.
An SMS forwarded to 1909 will only start a new series of texts – No keyword found. The pesky messages are any day more interesting than such replies.