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Kisan Divas and the Quiet Yuvraj

By Swati Chaturvedi | Last Updated: Thursday, June 23, 2011 - 11:59
Swati Chaturvedi

I actually wonder how Rahul Gandhi, spending his birthday abroad as he usually does, feels about the Congress party celebrating it as <i>‘Kisan Divas’</i>. Does he feel a twinge of embarrassment given that he seems to have very decent and sensitive instincts?

Does he feel irritated at the rush of competitive compulsive sycophancy that overcomes the Raja who is playing second in command to his Yuvraj?

Has he now started dreading each birthday as the desperate cries come from the Congress party - "Yuvraj is now ready for Maharaja's role". Pretenders such as the prime minister of India step aside. Last we looked, the hapless Dr Manmohan Singh was from the same party.

What Rahul Gandhi thinks remains an enigma since he is yet to think it worth his while to share his thoughts with his country. It’s the pesky media which he finds irritating, whisper the palace guard. Given that in democracy the media won’t go away, shouldn't Rahul have made his peace with it by now after eight years in politics and gotten on with the business of a conversation with India.

Be it Anna, corruption, the opposition or seemingly mundane things like what he likes to eat, the music he listens to, his favourite cricketer or actor why are they such state secrets in a government where even the Finance Minister's office is bugged. Can he even share with us his favourite flavour of chewing gum given the inventiveness with which the spooks are using it?

His grandfather wrote nearly every day of his life; his grandmother was brilliant at identifying with the India she ruled. His father was a genuine youth icon so why is Rahul so wary?

Forget press conferences and interviews, why has he chosen to keep mum in Parliament - the most prominent platform designed for debate in the country. Apart from a lone speech on Kalawati, his views on the burning issues of the day are not known. In this case he is following in his mum's footsteps. Sonia Gandhi has served the longest tenure as Congress president but does not believe in speaking in Parliament. Why this familial disdain?

Silence is a virtue but, as the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh who too has never bothered to seek election ever since he was nominated to the post, a virtue that has gone past it’s sell by date.

So as the top three retreat in to silence, a clamourous noisy country looks for leadership.
And, instead finds a vacuum in governance.


First Published: Thursday, June 23, 2011 - 11:59

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