Saturday, February 14, 2009

Coffee, Tea or Pee?


In late 1970s when I was in graduate school in New Jersey, the late prime minister of India, Mr. Morarji Desai, was the focus of a CBS 60-minutes interview extolling the virtues of drinking urine. It provided Pakistani students an opportunity to embarrass our fellow students and friends from India. When our Indian friends showed up for a visit, my roommate politely asked them whether they would like to have "coffee, tea or pee". It was all in good fun and we all laughed it off.

Fast forward thirty years. The joke appears to be turning into reality with the expected launch of a drink "Gau Jal" in India. It is being touted as the "Hindu Nationalists' answer to Coke" by the RSS.

"Don't worry, it won't smell like urine and will be tasty too," Om Prakash of the RSS told The Times from his headquarters in Hardwar, one of four holy cities on the River Ganges. "Its USP (unique selling proposition) will be that it's going to be very healthy. It won't be like carbonated drinks and would be devoid of any toxins."

Many Hindus consider cow urine to have medicinal properties and it is often drunk in religious festivals.

Since 2001, the RSS and its offshoots – which include the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party – have been promoting cow urine as a cure for ailments ranging from liver disease to obesity and even cancer.

The Hindu organization, which aims to transform India's secular society and establish the supremacy of a Hindu majority (often referred to as Hindutva), said it had not yet decided on a name or a price for the drink.

My marketing suggestion to the RSS is to brand this new desi concoction as "Desai Cola" in honor of the late Indian prime minister who was the first to promote the benefits of urine to the world on a major TV show. The ads for this new invention should boldly ask the prospects, "Does your Pepsi lack pep? Is your Coke not the real thing?" And then offer "Desai Cola" as the answer. In spite of its "medicinal properties" the RSS should price it competitively with other cola drinks such as Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola to rapidly gain a large market share. The RSS should also consider hiring some of the smart middle-class Indian graduates from Harvard, Stanford and Wharton Business schools, specially the kids with certifiable RSS sympathies, to give their product international recognition.

Here's a brief video clip about RSS's cow urine drink:



Related Links:

Hindus plan cow urine drink to rival Western sodas

Sonal Shah to Help Divide Obama's Victory Spoils

India to Launch Cow Urine Drink as Coke Alternative

Hindu Nationalists' Government in Exile?

India's Guantanamos and Abu Ghraibs

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

It is disgusting. Indians should thank other cultures from saving this lifestyle.

Shams said...

A Hindu friend whom I met on one of my visits in NJ told me that he "really did not drink cow pee, and if he did, never more than a teaspoon". At that rate, I doubt that cow pee could ever be a marketing success.

Anwar said...

Riaz, honestly speaking I was not comfortable reading this post. Desai Cola was a common name given to cows urine after Desai admitted and later in an interview detailed the health benefits... However very few Hindus indulge in drinking this stuff.

The Cable Guy said...

Ditto Anwar!!!

Riaz - Please remove that picture atleast. I understand that you don't have any agenda but there is a great difference in discussing a matter of this sort with close friends then posting it on a blog.

Anonymous said...

Anwar, The Cable Guy: good to see you mindful of other peoples' sensibilities.

Riaz, wonder if you'd be brave enough to post something similar on the Danish cartoon issue? That's about as silly as this one. If you cannot, would be most interested to hear why.

NaveenKS said...

ROFL!!! I thought the guy in the pic was taking a bath from a public bore well which is so common in slums. Took a re-look after reading the comments above and realized what it actually is about.

Btw Haq , as an Indian, I dont have any probs with that pic on ur blog. AFAIK only a minority of Hindus really drink cow pee.

Jadev_India said...

my oh my..nice venom..
Dont know about RSS's cow urine ventures. But Indian Ayurveda medicine system considers cow urine of highly medicinal value or urine in general(I am not sure).Ayurveda is highly popular in Middle-East too. To best of my knowledge, I think by Indian community standards, cow urine or cow dung are not something embarrassing or a taboo.I use Homeopathy medicine system, because Ayurveda requires rigid dietary restrictions and hugely expensive. In Homeopathy too, extracts from cockroaches(insects) and dead animals tissues are used in its medicines. Homeopathy is followed by Clinton family, Tony Blair,Prince Charles etc..and some of these guys are Russells group or Ivy League material...so not so dumb...I dont know what the fuzz is all about cow urine...

Peaceful Indian said...

Why are we suddenly discussing such things here? Appears to be a complete shift from whatever we were discussing since last many weeks.

Anonymous said...

It is true that Hindus consider cow sacred and there is a belief among the conservatives (especially people living in villages) that cow's urine is sacred and believed to have been used in medicines in the ancient times.....but to say that "many Hindus" drink pee on festivals may not be correct. I haven't come across a Hindu who drinks or has drunk cow urine. May be a very few do. But it is largely a thing of past. Only some ultra conservatives like RSS can revive such past stories.....

Being an Indian I was not really comfortable reading your post but I must say your suggestion to RSS on naming the drink as "Desai Cola" is very appropriate..:)

A peep into the Pakistan blogs will always fetch me at least one odd story about India which is difficult to find in our Indian mainstream media.....

Najam said...

Just for information,some people have been objecting that Muslims are also allowed to drink Camel Urine!

That is correct.Prophet Mohammad SAWS had prescribed Camel milk and urine to some people of Uranayah tribe,who had come to Medina ,but got seriously ill.They recovered,but later on did some criminal act and murdered a shepherd and were accordingly punished in accordance with Islamic laws.

Riaz Haq said...

Here's a differing opinion I found on answering Christianity website at http://www.answering-christianity.com/urine.htm

The Prophet prescribing Camel Urine as medicine:

First of all, let us clarify the reason and story behind the prescription. Some people had become very ill at the time of the prophet, and were suffering from an unknown illness. Their bellies had swollen and they were not in a fit state. Hence, the prophet said to them, that they would find a cure in the milk and urine of a camel and so he sent them out to an area where camels were grazing. These men went to this area and drank the milk and urine. Sure enough, just like the Prophet said, they were cured and became fit and healthy.

However, at the same time, evil thoughts entered their minds and they decided they wanted the camels for themselves. They therefore killed the owner, and made off with the camels. When news of the murder reached the prophet, he sent an envoy to capture the men, and when they were captured and brought before the prophet, capital punishment was meted out to them.

Having read this story, what do we conclude from it? The answering islam team would have us believe that this Hadith means that drinking camel urine is permissible in Islam. This is INCORRECT. The real meaning of this Hadith is that if a person needs to consume an impure and impermissible substance as a cure for an illness, and no other reasonable alternative is available, then it is permissible. In all other circumstances, camel urine is prohibited.

Wassalaam

Ray Lightning said...

Riaz, It is a pity that spending so much time in the USA haven't taught you a thing about the necessity of objectivity when assessing other cultures.

A lot of societies engage in customs that are considered to be disgusting or despicable when viewed from another culture. I can relate a thousand customs from China, Malaysia, Amazon basin, Africa, Arabia or
even Europe which many people find objectionable. As global citizens, our responsibility is to stand aside and let other people live as they wish, and not be judgemental on their doings. Of course, unless these acts violate basic human rights of other human beings.

When Europeans or Americans indulge in bashing Islamic culture and attacking bogeymen, you complain of orientalism. But now you are indulging in nothing short of the same.

The superiority of a culture lies in how permissive and liberal it is in accepting the doings of fringe minorities. I am glad that India boasts of such a culture. And yes, those who drink cow piss are a fringe minority, if you don't know yet.

Sikander Hayat said...

To read more about Pakistan please visit

http://real-politique.blogspot.com

Rohit said...

Criusly ,man. You sound way too disillusioned and, frankly, phoney. Others have said enough, I'd just say, Get a f-in life.
India has more muslims than your country does(and, I am not critcizing your country from here on, but just YOU, the dimwit). And, if a largely muslim social fabric of Pakistan can effectively murder its own kind, you will have fringe(yes, a sometimes broad fringe) violations in a bloody- billion strong nation. Cartman, of Southpark, would just use one word for your unbalanced vitriol, "FAG!".
please,dude, it reeks of hypocrisy. I unfortunately wasted my time checking up pakistanpositive, thinking I might meet some smart sensible and objective guys, and I get you- a stuck-up, confused, pretending-to-be-sarcastic douche-bag( with reference to some of your other posts which I unfortunately clicked on)..
Although, i must say, you did nail it bang-on- from the pic to the nationalist-fags to the whole scatological-fixation of certain parts of Hindu society here in this post. Still, dude, if you have interest in toilet humor, watch some hardcore PORN. As in everything else Westerners are just way too ahead even in the excreta-fixation. ....And, a**hole, please dont self-proclaim your blog as 'Riyaz the schmuck provides blah-dum-di-dumb south-asian dumpinions..' when all you are doing is scavenging for "Oh-look-at-India-hoo-ha" material...get your frikkin house-in-order, and we bloody Indians will clean up ours, a million mutinies be damned...
If you want to be ironic, funny or sarcastic, do it all in good humor. Indians know how to mock and laugh at themselves-the sum of all our peccadillos and ticks and superstitions are humongous enough a target. Humor and light satire turns to bigotry if you dont use the same mocko-meter, the same yardstick for your own issues as you do to others'. It might be unconscious, but you have to make an effort to be an equal-opportuniy offender if you really want it to remain balanced and not biased....Why as an outsider, and a pretentious-educated elite, display naked suspect intentions and questionable purposes?
You are just a black-as-yesterdays-tribal-shit blot on Pakistan's educated guys...reading, 'A case of exploding Mangoes" by one pakistani author, at College today, and then, curse-my-fate, chancing upon your stinking-as-desai-cola-mixed-with-Hydrogen-sulphide set of posts...Fortune does play a cruel hand..
I'd seriously petition this forum of bloggers to kick-this-snotty-twoface out of this forum...We must Shame any kind of bigotry. Whether The RSS, who are wimpy impotent-worried-about-the-size-of-their-schlongs loafers or know-it-all-educated-nutcases like this stupid, contemptible no-gooder. Nationalties dont enter this discussion. Stupid shams must be shamed.(that does have the alliterative charm of a slogan!)
Be consistent with your stated raison d'etre. I actually found this post funny, and not at all discomforting. But a chance look at your other posts informed me what a moronic charlatan you are..You really give investor opinions?? maybe on how to fund so-and-so have-no-idea-of-the-real-great-Islam-scaremongers.. It's just sad, pitiable, ironic and a F-in farce if a Piece of Turd such as yourself has a problem with people drinking urine...
*sob* Buffons like you on both sides, and bloody hell, we might never have 'Aman'. just, STFU!!!

Riaz Haq said...

Rohit,
From the tone and content of your comments, it's easy to see that your are far more angry than amused. My suggestion to you is: Get a Life, Dude!

abdlsy said...

Rohit, Riaz is presenting the truth, you just cannot handle the truth, by the way your English vocabulary is outdated. Boy such uncivilized rude comments against Mr. Riaz, who is definitely an intellectual(read his complete profile, u can learn a thing or two) he has the freedom of speech but he presents with facts, god bless USA for that right. The other day I read on BBC that a boy was married to a dog in India to get rid of bad omens. You guys are freak show man. Like Riaz said get a life dude (R u one of the slum dogs?), well then I can understand your frustrations. PEACE BRO, plus all of you Indians what is your motive logging into Pakistani blog, what do you expect? its PAKISTANI BLOG/COMPRENDE!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I agree with what rohit says. You've got no rights to mock Indians... Do you know that most of the doctors around the world believe that urine is actually good for health. And for your kind information it is also used in allopathic medicines...

And if you say that Hindus drink pee on there festivals then I think its one big lie... We who have spent so many years in India have never come across any such thing. So please stop spreading rumors!

Riaz Haq said...

Here's a Tehelka story titled Hindutva Lab 2.0 on rising Hindutva threat in Karnataka:

IS KARNATAKA the new Gujarat, the second “laboratory of Hindutva” for the BJP and the broader Sangh Parivar? As the BJP government in the state enters the final year of its first term in power — it had earlier ruled in alliance with the JD(S) — that disturbing question comes up again and again. Behind the morality and hypocrisy, the humbug and corruption that the BJP establishment in Bengaluru has been charged with is a harder, harsher truth: the scary distortion of an entire society.
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Take a small example. On 22 January, there was uproar in Uppanangadi, a hamlet near Mangalore. Kalladka Prabhakar Bhatt, a senior RSS leader known for his proximity to Sadananda Gowda and his predecessor BS Yeddyurappa, was addressing a crowd and resorted to extreme and undignified imagery. “Lift the veils of Muslim women,” Bhatt told the throng, “and glimpse what they have to offer.” His listeners cheered; policemen listened too, but strolled casually, as if nothing were happening.

Soon after, the local minorities — a mix of Muslim and Catholic organisations — approached the police, which reluctantly filed an FIR against Bhatt. Yet it refused to arrest him, arguing there was no basis for taking him into custody. Rather, as if to compensate, the local police then filed an FIR against the president of the Muslim Central Committee, Mohammad Masood, under Section 153(a) of the Indian Penal Code — “Promoting communal enmity between classes” — as well as Section 505(2) — “Making statements that create or promote communal enmity”.
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In 2009, Sitaram was arrested when a case was filed against him for defamation. Twenty-five policemen turned up and surrounded him. “It seemed like they had come to arrest a terrorist,” he exclaims. His fault was he had written about the exploits of a local Bajrang Dal leader.

Sitaram points to the newspapers stacked in his office. Picking up some of them at random, from the previous month’s pile, almost every day one finds mention of an attack on Muslims and Christians, on churches and mosques. Sitaram is distraught: “They go around shouting ‘Pehle qasaai, phir Isaai’ — First butchers (Muslims), then Christians.” According to official figures, a church has been attacked almost once every 10 days in the past three years. In some cases, the very presence of a Muslim boy with a Hindu girl has caused a riot.

The opposition to Hindu girl-Muslim boy romance is part of a peculiar phenomenon that the Sangh Parivar labels “love jihad”. This paranoia began in Kerala and alleges that Muslim men are being trained to woo and then indoctrinate Hindu girls, to win converts to Islam.

Bhatt is an exponent of theories of love jihad. In December 2011, the Hindu Nagarika Samiti held a massive protest meeting in Sullia, where Bhatt attacked the police for its supposed anti-Hindu sentiment and spoke of how love jihad, terrorism and cow slaughter were rampant in the state.

He was joined by others, notably Satyajit Suratkal, regional convener of the Hindu Jagran Vedike, who said: “Whenever the Muslims provoked us, we have given a suitable response. If they want more, then there might be a recurrence of earlier happenings. If the police join hands with traitors we will teach them a lesson too.”


http://www.tehelka.com/story_main51.asp?filename=Ne250212coverstory.asp