ITC Grand Central Hotel. Mumbai. Circa 2009.
For the 25th time this year, I enter the hotel in a cab. Three well built men, dressed in imposing black uniforms stop me, just like they have stopped me 24 times before. The least beefy among them walks slowly towards the car and inserts this mirror-on-wheels under the chassis and observes attentively. Convinced that there is nothing else but rotting auto parts there, he then turns to the other gentleman, who by now has his head inside the trunk. The head comes out unhurriedly and gives the less-beefy man a reassuring nod. Relieved that I am not out to harm humanity, they let my car proceed.
Surely, if I want to blow up ITC Grand Central, I will dress up in a business suit, pack loads of explosives under my chassis (exactly where it will be visible in the mirror) or just throw them in my trunk (for extra leg-room in the back seat), patiently wait for the inspection to be over (front & back!), so that I can then get on with blowing myself up.
PS: But in a sagging economy, to think that this has given jobs to roughly a million people nationwide who are doing this day-in day-out – a masterstroke!
and yes, not to mention the ‘impenetrable’ security this is giving our hotels…