The Financial Express


Bagwallahs are now ruling the roost

| Updated: March 13, 2020 21:28:02

Bagwallahs are now ruling the roost

Bags can baffle the older generation, for very few of them could afford the luxury of carrying a bag to office. It is the big boss of a public or private office who had an executive bag or a briefcase but he -- it's always he not she at that time -- did not have to carry the bag himself. He had orderlies or bearers on their toes to serve the master. Even in the past decade a bag was not essential for the majority of office-goers or students. Clerks or other staff members requiring to do paperwork at home used plastic files or even simple canvas bags, not leather bags, for carrying documents.

The last decade has witnessed an explosion of bags carried almost on everyone's shoulder or back. And these are quite stylish indeed! Although most students and tech-savvy young people strap on their shoulder either a backpack or a laptop bag, there are others who would not like such roomy arrangement. They choose a small hand-held bag for carrying a tiffin box, a water bottle, a magazine or some office documents. There are however others who plainly demonstrate their intention of putting their hotpots in a bag especially made for the purpose.

Choices for commuter bags, backpacks, tote, laptop bags, weekend bags, briefcases and messenger bags -- these are only a few widely used varieties of an array of bags -- are made depending on the taste and affordability of the person concerned. Here the ladies versions have been avoided intentionally because inclusion of those deserves an exclusive treatment and does not go with the objective of this male preserve. However, it would be an injustice if mention is not made of some bolder young girls who attired like boys carry the cross-body bags on their back or in front.

Now why do bags are baffling? Bags are baffling because apart from students who are forced to carry books weighing literally more than the body weight of the tiny-tots concerned, not many carry too many articles. For some it has become a fashion. What can be carried in a paper bag or a plastic file is carried in a backpack.

Nobody would have minded it if the bags did not prove to be a nuisance and at times a threat of injury to others. What a could-not-care-less attitude of the bagwallahs! Ninety per cent, if not more, of these backpackers have developed the habit of hanging the bags from one shoulder. When they get on board a public bus, they are least bothered about the inconvenience they create by slinging their bags from shoulders or on their backs to passengers, particularly those sitting.

What invariably happens is that the bags go on smiting one after another passengers on their heads and shoulders. In case of a passenger unmindful and with spectacles, the shove of the bag can turn into a push and the spectacled person may get injured as a result. Annoyed, sometimes some elder passengers protest the callous behaviour of bag-flaunting youths. Some youths do regret their acts but others are not so modest. They would rather retort that in public buses, this is likely to happen. You know what can happen if the arguments go on. Passenger support become handy but if the support gets divided, all hell breaks loose in that moving vehicle. On the crowded footpaths too, such bags can be a source of heated arguments if those catch someone unaware on a delicate spot of the body.

Bags may be necessary but their exaggerated use is what really looks frustrating. Bags by themselves are not at fault. Everyone has the right to carry them even if it is not in use. But how the person carries his bag is important. Even if the bag is meant for enhancing style, no harm; but one must be careful not to cause problem to others on account of the bag. What is repugnant is the mindless manner of carrying bags that irritates or otherwise causes pain to others.

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