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Mall Road

Bus Addey, Maal Rode, Camp, Madal Toun, Ajadpur, Shalimaar...

Big little man

So Tehelka's much hyped 'first major interview' with Rahul Gandhi has backfired. Regardless of the political uproar, the interview itself is amusing. Tehelka on its part is clearly cosying itself to The Family at 10 Janpath, and the words that they use are, to say the very least, embarassing. These words, for instance, preced the actual interview:
Rahul was unstoppable once he got going. At times he was like an express train, moving from thought to thought at great speed. He had good fun, laughing at many things, and went over several aspects of his personality. He is free with his hands, and likes to make gestures to stress a point while he speaks. Every time he cracked a joke, he hitched up the sleeves of his white kurta. [Emphasis mine.]

As though they were writing about an international rock star.

They make it clear that Mr Gandhi himself invited Tehelka to 'give' the interview. Mr Gandhi seems to have decided that it's time for him to become a 'leader', to take on the mantle. It's a farce of an interview, he's asked no real questions. Mr Gandhi could well have given a lecture. In the so-called interview he is so full of himself, so obsessed with driving home the point that he's 'different' from other politicians, even the Cangressi variety. What do you make of him when he says he could have been Prime Minister at 25 if he wanted to? Does that really make him humble, as he claims throughout the interview? Five questions before declaring his humility, he was humbly telling his interviewer: "You know, I am sorry to say this but you seem to have come to Amethi with arrogance. You seem to think that these guys know nothing." Humble? Of course! One is tempted to say that Gandhi is bullying his interviewer, and the interviewer, on his part, is there only to be bullied. The interviewer and his paper seem to be aware of being used for someone's PR job.

The gem is towards the end, when the inetrviewer decides to ask a question for a change:

All right. But why don't you ask questions in Parliament, or speak on issues at home?
I don't ask questions in Parliament because I like to think things through. Just look around at the questions that are asked in Parliament, and you'll know why I don't ask questions. I mean look at them. S***, is that the kind of stuff you want me to ask?

I can't remember any of the questions anyway.
But surely you remember my question on sugarcane farmers. You remember it because I asked it, and something was done immediately for the farmers (the farmers' dues were cleared).

Many MP's ask similar questions, and they do so because lobbies and interest groups persuade (sometimes even bribe) them to. So what's the big deal Mr Gandhi? What makes you think that from among a group of over 500 MP's (including mama dearest) you are the only one asking the right questions?

Humility? Of course!

Oh yes sir, you could have been Prime Minister at 25. The people of India are idiots and you are, well, Rahul Gandhi. But it ain't your fault, just that it is a pity to be born with such a burden.

It's fine if he really wants to say all this, just that I don't see why Tehelka should undermine itse credibility by printing a young man's ambitious nothingness as a cover story.

On a different note, why does the Slimes of India call Tehelka 'a weekly, published from Delhi'? Why can't they name the paper? After all Tehelka gave them an ad too...

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-- Blogger Mridula, 9/18/2005 07:54:00 pm

I came here via Desupundit and really enjoyed reading your profile.

I agree with you that he was not asked any real questions and the interview was a farce. Shekhar Suman said on a TV program Polkhol, that if Rahul Gandhi said tings casually and if he is so casual who is going to take him seriously? Good question, I think.    

-- Blogger Sunil, 9/18/2005 09:53:00 pm

well....the people of a country get the leaders they deserve.......so if we get Rahul, we've only ourselves to blame...    

-- Blogger blokes, 9/19/2005 10:07:00 am

ouch- what an attitude. Wonder who his models were...    

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