The great Indian laughter challenge

Friday, 28 March 2014 - 7:45am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

It's officially time to rename the 2014 general elections "The Great Indian Laughter Challenge". Every morning our political overlords wake up and ask themselves serious questions like "Are there more fringe loonies I can induct in my party?" "What should I do to contradict everything that I pretend to stand for?" and most importantly, "How do I take a dump over an entire generations dreams?"

This week it was the BJP's turn. The party where Arun Jaitley won't let Narendra Modi become PM decided to lose a sizable chunk of urban votes by inducting the connoisseur of parties and patriarchy, Mr Pramod Muthalik. Mr Muthalik's induction led to a lot of people expressing anger and rage especially because his cottage industry functioned in cities instead of remote rural areas. Even hardcore BJP supporters expressed anguish at this decision. You know no one cares about you when even Niti Central can't put a PR spin. Mr Muthalik left the party just five hours later in a move that I imagine must have really turned Arvind Kejriwal on. Sadly, the Congress will now be unable to field Honey Singh against him in a battle between an unstoppable force of partying Vs the immovable object against it. What they did instead was induct Muthalik protégé Dinker Shetty, before realising they would have to expel him just like Muthalik. Sad that even when it comes to inducting and expelling fringe leaders the Congress seems inept and disconnected.

The bigger worry for us is how political parties don't even care enough to hide or be subtle with their duplicity. As long as a candidate can deliver votes, their past record or moral compass doesn't seem to matter. A Raja has been given a ticket again while we continue to struggle with our call drops. Suresh Kalmadi is holding the central government to ransom as if the Commonwealth Games never happened. Ashok Chavan is busy telling the world that "his conscience is clear" to which I guess I'm supposed to respond with "Awwww, such a nice man he is".

Sharad Pawar is busy telling his supporters to vote twice and telling debt ridden farmers to have "courage". I won't be surprised if NCP volunteers are touring Vidharbha handing out copies of The Secret.

Muthalik after being expelled broke down on camera and for a moment I almost felt bad for him. For him, all he was doing before elections for fulfilling his brief and meeting his targets like any other enterprise.

Now when the time finally came for him to capitalise, the party expelled him because of media outrage. Who would have thought it would turn into a desi version of Notting Hill? I'm having sleepless nights imagining him saying, "I'm just a boy, standing in front of a party, asking them to love me".


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