The Little Story of Dogs in a Pune Street

Street Dogs own their streets. It’s why they are called street dogs. Gully ka kutta. I am not going for the next part of the famous Hindi phrase. I don’t know much about Ghats. I don’t understand where Pune has Ghats. There’s Western Ghats. But I am unable to understand why dogs have to go to those hills if they are not in their homes. So, that phrase is not applicable. To me, at least.

Dahanukar Colony is a nice little street. People are pious, they pray, they have important morning discussions while they buy stuff or eat and drink stuff, they go to work in the mornings and they come back from work and stick around in homes from early evening on. They generally sleep early. If they are delayed, it is usually because of a Cricket match or a serial or News of some sort. Of course, there are those who have their wards calling or Skyping from regions unknown. They stay up. But all within the four walls. The man on the street vanishes well before the late hour.

The Street Dogs take over.

Firstly, there are some internal necessary conversations between the dogs. They probably have their own versions of Mohalla Committee. They probably have neat Committee meetings and rules to follow. Maybe a mangy dog breaks those rules? So, a meeting is called to resolve all issues with the mangy dog. Maybe, he has not provided enough documentation of the sublet he has given to another mangy dog from elsewhere in Kothrud and that needs to be sorted out. Maybe, the documentation is falsified to hoodwink the ever vigilant committee. But the committee is smart and they latch on to the lies in the documentation and they kind of warn the mangy dog about his future in that street. The mangy dog is also told about the suspicious dogs that keep coming and going in his end of the street. The others are not favourably inclined towards all these happenings. The mangy dog is silent while he listens to the Committee dogs. He is knowing what to do next to subvert the whole system. He is after all an old owner of street space.

So, he walks out of the meeting and barks out orders to his newly acquired shady friends.

The Committee dogs don’t like it and a lot of barking ensues. The mangy dog starts getting physical. The friends of the mangy dog insert themselves into the melee. The committee dogs are now afraid for their life. They want to retire from the whole melee without being wounded. A few leave the space surreptitiously. The last few keep barking but from a distance. They are now not going near the mangy dog. They call him names; he wags his tail. He is enjoying it. Slowly, they retire.

It is far into the night. The mangy dog and his friends have taken over the street. They are the new kings.

Sounds familiar?

Indraneel Majumdar

Indraneel Majumdar

Indraneel Majumdar is a CEO of a hospitality and amusement company, owns a business, chases trivia and enjoys ‘slice of life’ situations. After spending many years in Pune and Mumbai, he now lives in Bengaluru. His column appears every Tuesday on Pune365.
Indraneel Majumdar

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