The three-day theatre at Jaipur was accompanied with all the necessary ingredients of a melodrama. Expectedly, the climax of the show — Tamasha — was the coronation of the “yuvraj”. The apologists of the grand old party will like us to believe that the heir-apparent was so far reluctant to assume his ordained responsibilities not because of his any perceived incapability.
In a somewhat emotional tone Rahul revealed that his mother thinks ‘power is poison’; therefore he avoided the chalice thus far with a higher purpose of not getting consumed by the toxic power. Yet there seems to be a little problem in the emotional scene enacted solely to impress the highly-sentimental Indian; apparently the performance is the repetition of an old act. Rajiv Gandhi too was reluctant to assume the power initially.
However, the way he was accused by his political opponents of misusing the power in the wake of the Bofors scandal is still very much fresh in the public memory. First time in the history of free India, the sympathy wave generated by Indira Gandhi’s unfortunate assassination enabled the Congress under Rajiv to win more than 400 seats in Parliament. In less than five years, the haughty display of power-politics by Rajiv and his cronies led to the worst ever debacle of the Congress.
The speechwriters of the dynasty may have rightly perceived that since the highly emotional Indian is inherently flummoxed by the pomp, show and the paraphernalia associated with the rulers, he/she can easily be foxed again with a repeat performance. The think-tank of the Congress is not to be blamed for considering the Indian voter as a loyal subject. The way the dynastic politics has fully flourished in India, actually a sham in the name of democracy, is enough to underscore the slave mentality syndrome a common Indian is badly afflicted with.
The dynasty can anoint a ruler — fifth generation in succession in Rahul’s case — with a firm hope that the emotional voter will dutifully stamp his approval in the so-called elections — is it an election or a sophisticated process of nomination? If it is not slave mentality, how else could this infatuation with dynastic rule can be explained? The slave mentality of the Indian voter is not a mere slur; it is the fact of life.
The kings, nawabs and zameendars have been replaced by the dynastic rulers in the length and breadth of the democracy so brazenly and in perpetuity. Still it seems that the time hasn’t come yet for the people to face the ugly realties squarely. Till the time the dynasties cropped like chicken pox on the body politics of the democracy are able to thrive rather with greater disdain for the basic democratic values, the sundry voter will again and again prove to be a meek bounded slave rather than an informed and empowered citizen.
The onus for the change is not with the dynasties, they have a strong vested interest in maintaining the status quo. Unless the common citizen thinks and acts like a free citizen and brings to end the disgusting dynastic politics, the hope of real change will remain an elusive idea.
The coronation ceremony at Jaipur was not entirely an appalling show; it contained some amusing elements also.
The Gandhis feel completely immune to any public scrutiny. Sorrounded by a huge army of sycophants whose very survival depends on the continuation of the dynasty, they are beyond the realm of any criticism within the Congress party. The fully secure Gandhis have developed a weird attitude of moral superiority, and assuming a high moral high ground they readily pontificate as if they are free from all the ills. Rahul reportedly posed a question at Jaipur: “Why are the youth angry?”
And he seems to have an answer also: “We don’t empower people at the bottom. People feel they are outside the system. That happens because we don’t respect knowledge. We respect only positions. If you don’t have position, you mean nothing.”
This seems to be a very true prognosis. But dear Rahul, what special qualification do you have to be able to posses the prominent position you presently hold that may soon catapult you to become the next prime minister of India, other than your unique place in the dynasty? Charity begins at home; dynastic politics has to come to an end for the youth to feel to be part of the system. Are you prepared Mr Gandhi? Everything else sounds like a gibberish talk.