The year 2018 was monumental, surely it should be celebrated with an unofficial awards ceremony.
This was a year in which the Indian citizen finally rediscovered her mojo – marching for her rights, outing sexual harassers, protesting against the dilution of the SC/ST Atrocities Act, and demanding the right to pray at Sabarimala. In 2018, there was much to celebrate and much to criticise as well. So what better way to mark the year gone than with an informal awards ceremony?
CBI vs CBI, starring Alok Verma and Rakesh Asthana with a cameo by Moin Qureshi.
Virat Kohli, directing the viral video of wife Anushka Sharma screaming at a fellow passenger for littering the street.
Tej Pratap Yadav in the ongoing drama of his marriage-divorce-marriage with able support from the appropriately named Aishwarya Rai.
Mehbooba Mufti for continuing with the PDP-BJP alliance until she couldn’t.
Best Child Artiste:
Taimur Ali Khan, celebrity child of celebrity parents Kareena Kapoor Khan and Saif Ali Khan, whose every moment is paparazzi gold, whether he is at a birthday party or on holiday in South Africa.
Best Original Screenplay:
WhatsApp, which did its best to attach its 200 million users in India to gossip, innuendo and often murder, spurring lynchings for alleged child abductions and cow theft.
Best Ensemble Cast:
The four Supreme Court justices who gave a sensational press conference protesting against interference by the government saying democracy was in danger.
Most Entertaining Debut:
The giant-killing Tripura chief minister Biplab Dev, who was a goldmine for headline writers with comments ranging from measuring the Indianness of Diana Hayden to the presence of internet during the Mahabharata.
Urijit Patel’s spine, when he finally quit the Reserve Bank of India, after a standoff with the Narendra Modi government.
Best Break-up Line:
Chaliye, Puducherry ko Vanakkam, from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Worst Break-up Line:
Why doesn’t he go to Pakistan, for Naseeruddin Shah and every other Indian Muslim who protested about the state of minorities.
Borrowed from Leonard Cohen’s The Ashes of the Gay, from Justice D.Y. Chandrachud in the historic judgment scrapping Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code: “Democracy/It’s coming through a hole in the air/It’s coming from the feel/that this ain’t exactly real/or it’s real/but it ain’t exactly there/From the wars against disorder/The sirens night and day/from the fires of the homeless/the ashes of the gay/Democracy is coming.”
Surgical Strike of the Year:
Nitin Gadkari on intolerance in India.
Word of the Year:
Longest Word of the Year:
Floccinaucinihilipilification, used by Shashi Tharoor to launch his book on Prime Minister Modi. It means: “The action or habit of estimating something as worthless.”
Economic Contribution of the Year:
Pakoda economics, courtesy Prime Minister Modi, to celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit of India’s youth. Since used in the phrase: If they have no bread, let them eat pakodas.
Face-off of the Year:
Between Rahul Gandhi’s Congress Shiv Bhakts and Narendra Modi’s Bhakts online and Ram Bhakts offline.
Best Sound Effects:
To the Uttar Pradesh police officer who went on saying “thai-thai” as his gun wasn’t working during a shootout.
Best Prop of the Year:
Sardar Patel statue, which did a good job of propping up the ego of Dear Leader.
Best Costume Designer of the Year:
Sabyasachi, for ensuring three different brides Deepika Padukone, Priyanka Chopra and Saina Nehwal wore essentially the same outfit in different colours.
Best Original Song:
The one to which guests, especially Hillary Clinton, danced at the wedding of Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal.
Best Comedy Picture of the Year:
Written by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath for Allahabad, which was renamed Prayagraj.
Best Visual Effects:
The ‘Angry Hanuman’ sticker on the back of cars and autorickshaws, courtesy Karan Acharya, the artist sanctified by Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Rahul Gandhi embracing Hugger-in-Chief Narendra Modi in Parliament, and following it up with a wink worthy of Priya Prakash Warrier.
Best Sporting Achievement:
Off the field, with Navjot Singh Sidhu meeting Imran Khan in Pakistan.