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Chapter 4: God Is a Lie

Once I was stuck in Allahabad. First they declared the train was two hours late. I said, “Not much of a problem. I will reach to the place where I am going in time. Then, after two hours, I went to inquire. They said, “Now it is another four hours late.”

I said, “Is it going backwards, because how can it be another four hours late when it was just two hours late before? Those two hours are gone; the train should be on the platform. It means it is now six hours late. What is happening? Is the train going backwards?”

The man was in shock. He could not answer me, because my question was absolutely logical. “What is happening to the train? I can understand it was late, but it cannot go on moving backwards. Next time I will come after four hours. It may be twelve hours late because it is going backwards. You have to answer me.”

He said, “What can I do? I have just been informed by the stationmaster that it is now another four hours late.”

I said, “Go and ask the stationmaster, otherwise I am going to report this to the police.”

He said, “For what?”

I said, “Your stationmaster and you are both crackpots. What is happening to the train? How can it be so much later?”

He rushed towards the stationmaster and the stationmaster came to cool me down. He said, “It is not going backwards.”

Then I asked, “What is happening?”

He said; “I don’t know. The information has just come from the other station that it is another four hours late.”

I said, “Inquire from the other station from where you are receiving the message, because if it gets a little later I will go to the police station and find out where the madhouse is in Allahabad. And you will be arrested.”

He said, “But it is not my fault.”

I said, “I don’t care whose fault it is! Find out why the train is going backwards!”

But in India it happens every day.just to keep people hoping. They don’t know exactly how late it will be, so, ”Two hours late.” If it comes early, it is good. If it does not come early, then again it becomes late, but to tell people that it will be twelve hours late is too shocking. So make it easy: “Two hours.four hours.two hours more.it is just coming within one hour.” By and by it is twelve hours late. So they could not answer me because I knew the reality. What was the reality? The reality was they had no idea how late it would be.

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