“Not I, Sir” – Ravi K

My dear Mrs. Ravi K,


I never thought I would be writing to you, especially after having written to your husband last week. Please excuse me for doing so but, after hearing what he had to say at the Bond Commission this week, I think I was wrong: instead of writing to him, I should have been writing to you all this time.

Mrs. Ravi K, you would have heard of the saying ‘behind every successful man, there is a woman’. I realised how true it was only after hearing Ravi testify at the Commission. All these years, we were applauding this man, thinking what a genius he was – when in fact, it was you who made him special.

Being the humble chap he is, he was ready to pass on the credit to you at the Commission. So, he told them that while he was appearing to be busy running the nation’s finances, you were the one who really made the decisions that cost millions of rupees – without so much as mentioning it to him.

Honestly, I don’t know what the conversation at the Karunanayake dinner table is like. I don’t think Ravi spends his precious time with you talking about the GDP, inflation or foreign reserves. Even though he is Foreign Minister now, I don’t think he talks about North Korea or Donald Trump either.

Instead, he must be talking about the latest episode of ‘Kopi Kadey’, how the Indians are thrashing us in cricket or even the winning numbers of the Saturday Fortune – now that he is in charge of lotteries. So, even if you said, ‘we just rented a million rupees a month penthouse’ he wouldn’t have noticed it.

That makes me think you are a very lucky lady, Mrs. Ravi K. Let’s face it, in this day of rising prices and dwindling wages, most husbands would quarrel with their wives if they so much as asked for a new saree. Yet, you rent a million rupees a month penthouse – and he doesn’t even raise an eyebrow!

Poor chap, he is so busy that he didn’t realise he is moving into a penthouse, that its rent was over a million rupees a month and that someone had taken the trouble to pay his rent for him. And, he didn’t even bother to ask how all that happened, obviously because he knew you would take care of all that.

I envy you, Mrs. Ravi K. You are very fortunate that you and Ravi have chaps who will pay more than ten million rupees in rent for you, with no questions asked. People want to know why he did that. I am sure it is simply because Ravi had been a good friend to him too. After all, what are friends for?

Yet, at the Commission they were asking Ravi about the trips he made and about text messages to the man who paid your rent. How would he know about texts sent to that chap- especially when they are about ‘Hon Min RK’? If ‘Hon’ referred to honourable, surely they must know it can’t be about Ravi!

Ravi also says that the rest of the family are not involved in politics. Since you don’t seem to know about his politics and he doesn’t know what happens at home, let me update you: he left Lalith’s and Gamini’s party, he is now a minister, he was in charge of Finance but now deals with Foreign Affairs.

Anyway, Mrs. Ravi K, if I were you, I will be worried about Ravi, because he is forgetful about some events. He doesn’t remember that he went on so many visits to Singapore with the chap who paid his rent. He hardly remembers him now. Maybe Ravi is overworked or maybe age is catching up on him.

Now there are all these calls for him to resign. People ask how he can keep his job if he doesn’t know who pays his rent, if he can’t remember who he travels with and if he writes official letters more than one year after an event. Even if he has to go, Mrs. Ravi K, I don’t think you should worry too much.

You took multi-million rupee decisions about your household, getting ‘foreign aid’ which you don’t even have to repay. Your home economy seems to be in much better shape than our country’s. Even Ravi’s favourite answer is ‘I didn’t know, my wife did it’. So, if he resigns, why not take his job?

Yours truly,
Punchi Putha

PS: Your daughter had asked why only Ravi is being targeted and whether one man is responsible for all what has happened in the last two years. Well, if she knows of anyone else who had a million rupee apartment paid for by someone else- because she seems to think there are others – she should let us know and we can talk about them too. In the meantime, Mrs. Ravi K, I think you should tell her that when there is nothing to say, it is better to say nothing. Don’t you agree?