In a recent incident of Saturday, May 4, 2013, a woman street hawker outside the restaurant was beaten by a ‘bouncer’ employed at the popular Paradise Biryani. A few customers got outraged and one brave woman, wrote a blog that went viral. Meanwhile, some called the city police. Hyderabad newspapers couldn’t ignore a story that had already caught the fancy of their English speaking reader base, so they reported the incident. The ‘bouncer’ is being reported arrested. Many may think that’s a happy ending. I beg to differ.
First, consider the two eventual victims in the story. The flower hawker woman. Poor and Female. Thrashed. Scared away from her only livelihood? Need I say more. The ‘bouncer’ Prakash Yadav. Male, Lower middle class.Probably lives away from his family and works as a security man to make ends meet for many. Most likely will loose his job.
Now, consider who is really responsible. One, the Paradise management and two, many of its customers. Why did the bouncer behave in the way he did? Probably because it is the diktat of the restaurant management to keep the area around “clean”. Clean of irritants who the well heeled customers of Paradise potentially would find a nuisance. Such instructions to ward off such “troublemakers” (as this woman). are unarguably motivated by the need to provide a delightful customer experience. An incident such as this dents their image for sure. But perhaps the news of the bouncer’s arrest, that too reported in newspapers within hours of the incident, is perhaps the best PR redemption exercise.
Of course the bouncer should be punished for inappropriate behavior. But what about the manager who instructed the bouncer to behave in this way? What about the owner who asked the manager to tell the bouncer to behave this way? What about the customers who probably scoff at the sight of beggars and street hawkers outside the restaurant?
Another bunch of “people like them” have been further sidelined. As for “people like us”, the blogger, the newspapers and Paradise Restaurant management and the customers, we have all reaped our share of gains.
In sum, the blog and the resulting action is job well begun, but only half done!
I request share this one widely, so that people also appreciate the harder implications of such stories