A beggar woman flaunting a tiny unprotected baby in rags, at the traffic, signal asking for five rupees to feed the baby paint a smile on my face. Not that I am insensate to the privation that the poor face. I smile because at least they exploit our emotions just to satiate their hunger. Emotional exploitation is the most powerful tool of exploitation in our country. Actually we are trained from childhood to exploit the world with our emotions. A child wailing to seek attention learns its first lesson in emotional exploitation when the mother gives all the attention when it cries. With these memories the child grows in the world equipped with this deadly weapon to take on the world. The development of this skill depends on the effectiveness of the skill in individual cases. The more the effectiveness better is the development. No wonder a pampered child grows up to become a world class emotional exploiter. The best thing about this form of exploitation is that it is not punishable. So it is up to the exploiter when and where and how to use this weapon. Gandhiji used this weapon when he compelled people to join his non violent Satyagraha by going on fast whenever people did not support his nonviolent ways . . People supported his cause and bravely faced the British lathi charge not because they believed in non violence but because they loved Gandhiji. Or else how do we explain the violence that broke out after partition. His emotional exploitation of the nation got us freedom from the English rule . The comic side of this is that the exploited gets a high when the process of emotional exploitation is at its high. It is almost like a terrorist attack you never know when the emotional terrorist will strike. Or should I say it is like a sugar coated bitter pill one only realizes the bitterness when the sugar coating of blind love dissolves in the saliva of truth.
I have been a perpetual victim of emotional exploitation and know how stupid one feels when the fact dawns. A friend almost always floored me with her emotional assault every time she said “oh, what will I do without you?” she is older to me and knows that I love and respect her for what she is. I would instantly believe myself to be indispensable and do anything she said instantly and with enthusiasm. Poor me, not gauging depth of that petty emotional stream, dived in the stream of emotions only to get my head banged on the hard surface of reality sooner that expected. Today I laugh at my stupidity in believing such emotional outpouring to be true and at my overlooking the meanness behind such calculated overflow of emotions. She has moved away to another town and in a way she is doing very well with out me being around. But when ever she gets a chance she teases me about how innocently I assumed myself to be indispensable and that too not directly but by convincing someone “oh what will I do without you”.