The Blue -eyed (Non-Brahmin) who would be P.M.
People in ‘High’ places…
There are multiple P.M. hopefuls waiting in the wings to grab the top job.Heaven knows who suggested Sushil Kumar Shinde’s name - it is reliably learnt that this rangeela’s Happy Hour begins at sundown come what may. He is clearly a happy man, who enjoys his happy state … I do believe it is important for the well being of a country to have a happy leader. But THIS happy? Shinde lives the high life – literally and figuratively. He sure has come a long way from that mamlatdar’s office where he began his life. We all have our weaknesses, but people who know Shinde well, prefer to meet him before 7p.m. That is if they are looking for a coherent conversation. Those interested in mere ‘time pass’ and shameless chamchgiri, wait for sunset, since they are sure of catching the light skinned, blue-eyed Dalit politico at his mellowest. In other words, Shinde would fail a breathalyser test post- sunset, and it is just as well he doesn’t drive himself. Let’s not beat around the bush – Shinde likes his booze, okay? That’s our Shinde - clever, cunning and a tippler who can barely keep those pegs in check, even while he is at his desk, working long hours into the night. As Maharashtra’s chief minister, he was notorious for his rowdy ‘after hours’ in Varsha. What sort of a prime minister would such a guy make? Well… he’d be in good company. In India, we get very touchy and judgemental about people who like their alcohol. We associate them with decadence and sloth. But internationally, they are far more accepting of boozards as leaders ( Britain, Russia,France …the list is endless). And some of those chaps did very well as Presidents and Prime Ministers.
Shinde was known to be Dhirubhai’s blue –eyed guy (literally and figuratively). The relationship worked great for both men. Shinde started his life as a peon in the malatdar’s office and was a sub-inspector later in the police force. It doesn’t get more ground level or hands on than that. Becoming Sharad Pawar’s protégé changed Shinde’s fortune and perhaps also enhanced Pawar’s. It was a mutually advantageous relationship that saw Shinde emerge as the landlord of all he surveyed. Quite a trajectory for an under privileged Dalit boy. Today, Pawar’s shisya has become his hard-to-dismiss rival. What an amazing reversal of roles. Since the dreaded ‘D-Word’ is no longer taboo, and the Dalit factor has emerged as the single most important pivot around which alliances will get formed in this perverse, immoral election, Shinde stands as good a chance as the other small-time players to get a shot at the top job in the country. Though with a quasi-Maharashtrian lady as the President of India, one more Maharshtrian would be pushing it. But if it is going to be a toss up between two Dalits, one a female and the other our Shinde, I get the feeling the Behenji will win. The one thing they have in common is a penchant for polyester. Shinde’s old mentor\patron Dhirubhai must have introduced him to the fabric, but he can’t seem to get enough of it. He remained Dhirubhai’s Knight in shining armour (and shinier shoes). So.. the biggest change in India if either of these two make it, will be in the sale of shiney, sasta aur tikao polyester – pink for Mayawati and white for Shinde. Oh… and the Good Doc (Manmohan Singh )will have to be on call at all times, especially when the nightly Happy Hour begins … Bhagwan knows what treaties and documents Shinde may sign in that state. Talk of people in ‘high’ places !!
Guys, this appeared in Asian Age today.... and I have received an overwhelming response to the piece. I await your verdict with bated breath.
About the Bakul phool attack - it worked, but on a far more subdued scale. John, just back from trekking in Bhutan, was on a fitness kick ( read: off Single Malts). He was being a very good boy and making p.c. with the guests. Zia Modi ( how I love that brainy and FUN woman!) was in great form, and the evening sparkled! Just as we were leaving, we managed to catch the last five minutes of the nail biting finish to the IPL match which saw our Mumbai Indians lose by 2 wickets. Nita Ambani's Gayatri mantra Vs. Shilpa Shetty's secret mantra. I guess Shilpa's was more powerful! Chalo - game hi to hai.
The asli game for India begins on saturday.By this time tomorrow, we will KNOW!!
FINGERS AND TOES CROSSED!