Sunday, 8 June 2014

Indian Trucks


The street is full of moments, you just need to have the curiosity to pick them up! Travelling as they say, is not just about covering distances. When you travel, you cover cultures, traditions, lives et al. There is an old Indian belief that says that with every definite number of miles (or kilometres), the language changes, the custom changes, the tradition changes and even the physical characteristics of people vary with the changing distances. Thus, travelling is by all means a extremely dynamic process or mechanism.

Trucks are apparently the most common sort of vehicles that are used to deliver goods to far places. That makes it extremely obvious that these trucks cover a lot of distance on a daily basis. Furthermore, most of the distance that these trucks cover are during the nights. We tried observing these trucks and their truck drivers to know more about them and their perceptions about life and the world. We found five points that are apparently common in most of the Indian trucks and their truck drivers.

1.       They love eating and they live their lives king size! Yes, most of these truck drivers are ardent food lovers and when they eat they eat a lot! That’s the reason most of the Indian highways are flooded with “Dhabas” (colloquial term for a local restaurant or food point). Terms like dieting, calories are absolutely alien to these people and they even don’t mind following the rich diet with a few drinks!

2.       They are hard working people with tremendous stamina. Yes, these truck drivers drive for long at a stretch and that too with a broad smile on their face! They have no problems working hard for hours at a stretch. Also, most of these drivers are well built and have tremendously high levels of immunity!

3.       They are nocturnal and have a long communion with trucks and travel life. Most of these trucks cover distances during the night time. Thus, these truck drivers are mostly nocturnal. Also, most of them start travelling in the trucks from a very young age. Most of the truck drivers start as helpers (and they are called ‘chhotu’) in their young age and then they get promoted to being truck drivers. That’s the reason most of their life is spent like that of a nomadic.

4.       They are great story tellers. Although, most of the stories they tell are those concocted cock and bull types! They are brilliant story tellers, the fact that they travel far distances on a regular basis helps them improve and demonstrate this art of storytelling. When you land in a place, the people there will easily believe the stories you tell them of far places as they have never been there themselves.

5.       Trucks have a long and everlasting communion with art and graffiti. Often they catch the public attention with the lines or graffiti that is painted on these trucks. The lines or quotes at the back of these trucks are usually satirical and sarcastic! Indian trucks prove that art has no limits and emotions painted on canvas of any sort are good enough to catch general attention!     



  1. This indeed is a very sketchy kind of an article which just theorizes. I went into it to see if there was an element of nostalgia or romance woven into it. Sadly enough, it was not there at all. Probably it is owing to the arm chair writing and not interacting with the drivers to inject an element of nostalgia. For example, Gulzar created a whole character of truck driver through Sanjeev Kumar in his film Namkeen and the song- raah mein rehte hain yaadon mein basar karte hain, indeed succinctly defines the persona of a truck driver.
    Then another aspect that one needs to analyze is why is that Punjabis are the biggest truckers. They are dominating trucking industry even in Canada and in some parts of England, what is that magnetizes to the business of trucking.
    I have met a truck driver who has driven truck in Japan for 10 years without knowing the language. These are the nuances that interests and entices the reader, not a cut and paste job. Sorry to say that, it could have been an interesting article but it did not eventually. Research is totally lacking.

    1. Thanks a lot for reading! Your suggestions are greatly valued. That's how we can get better with time. That said, research was made preceding this article but yes keep visiting this place and will try to make continuous improvements.

    2. It is not surprising Punjabis are dominating as truckers in Canada and England. Other Indians are dominating in IT, Engineering, Medical, NASA, and politics all over the world especially in USA.

    3. Thanks for reading the article SG!


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