From almost 100 out of 100 to, like, 2 out of 38

Time was when the Ambassador, made by the decidedly nationalist sounding Hindustan Motors, was the official car of those suffering from the “Lal Bathi Syndrome” id est the political elite.

No longer.

At the Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore on Thursday, the red lights on top of vehicles provide a bird’s eye-view of how reforms broke the back of a Calcutta monopoly.

Except that the preferred colour remains white, although the affairs inside have become markedly black.

Photograph: Karnataka Photo News