The Telegraph
Wednesday , December 19 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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Fantasy run before D-day

The show will go on forever but as of now, the debate over doomsday appears to be a never-ending affair.

Some believe that this Friday could be the end of the world or Apocalypse. The fountainhead of this belief is the widely circulated December 21, 2012 phenomenon.

For the uninitiated, a set of cataclysmic events is supposed to end the world, as we know it, on this date when the 5,125-year-old Mesoamerican Long calendar (charted by the Maya civilisation) also comes to a close.

Experts, however, claim that there is no need to press the panic button yet. “There are no scientific theories supporting the claims of those who are talking about apocalypse,” said Kumar Ramji Prasad Singh, a scientist at the planetarium. “So there is no question of believing in such predictions.”

But there is nothing to prevent Patnaites from enjoying the hype. When The Telegraph asked citizens of different ages if they believed in the apocalypse prediction, most said they did not. But many of them thought of a last thing they would like to do if the sky did show signs of cracking up and collapsing.

“I don’t think it is true,” said Mahwish Fatmi, a first-year psychology student of Patna Women’s College. “But I would really love to see Dabangg 2 before the world ends, as I am a diehard Salman Khan fan.”

The sequel of the action-comedy is slated to release this Friday. So perhaps, Fatmi would rush to a morning show.

Unlike her, Dr Amulya Kumar Singh has started to believe in the end of the world, thanks to his religious mother and wife. “I would like to spend some quality time with my wife,” he said.

Asked if he had made any special plans because only a few days were left for the deadline of the prediction, Singh said: “Where we would go and what we would do are not that important. But it would be a special date for us anyway.”

While the doctor contemplates the curtains coming down, others seem least bothered by the hullabaloo. Sudhir Mishra, deputy director, agriculture department, said: “This is all rubbish. I don’t believe in doomsday predictions. The world will come to an end as God has created it. But when that will happen can be predicted only by the Creator.”

Others would take a holiday if anyone could confirm that apocalypse prediction was a certainty.

N.K. Mishra, programme officer, State Health Society, Bihar, said: “I would go to some beach and spend quality time with my wife.”

Going too far from home just before the world comes to end is not a good idea for some. Patna, anyway, has enough amusement for them. Sujata Singh, a homemaker who lives in the Rajapul area, said: “There are no immediate signs of the world ending, like a tsunami or earthquake. Why should we believe it?”

She added: “If it is true though, I would love to go to The Disc Man (the new discotheque that has opened in Patna recently). I would love to have a dance with my husband.”

Not only adults, school students, too, are debating over what to do should they face such an eventuality. Though most of them have no belief in the sudden full stop that advocates of apocalypse would like us to subscribe to, they have a few opinions on the hype as well. Sneha Ghosh, a Class X student of Mount Carmel High School, said: “We are all going to die one day. So, I partly believe in doomsday predictions.”

Her best friend Shivani Singh, who has many things in common with her, did not agree though. “How can one trust a calendar made by people in a different part of the world thousands of years ago?” she said. “It has no scientific basis.”

Asked what their last wishes would be if the unscientific did come to pass, they had different answers as well. “I would love to meet Robert Pattinson and Tom Cruise,” she said. “I wouldn’t really mind if I die after meeting the superstars.” Even if she can’t meet the Mission Impossible star, she could perhaps watch an Armageddon-themed movie starring him at her home. (See graphic)

Her best friend, however, wants to live a most exhilarating dream. “I would throw away my books and run away to Venice,” said Sneha.