Thursday, March 26, 2009

RAHUL, VARUN AND THE POLITICS OF HATE

Varun Gandhi has become the star attraction/repulsion of the ongoing election campaign, thanks to a couple of speeches that he made in his parliamentary constituency, inciting the "majority community" against the "minority community". That it was the London School of Economics educated great grandson of Nehru who took such a communally provocative line to garner votes is something that has stunned everyone. Not surprisingly, reactions have been extreme, forcing Varun Gandhi to go into hiding till the wind blows over.

Yesterday, however, Varun Gandhi ran into his estranged cousins and a few others at a private function. This is what transpired at that off-the-record, "mythical" gathering:

Varun: I swear on the Gita that I will cut the hand that is raised against Hindus.

RS Prasad: We dissociate ourselves from your remarks, even though many of us privately admire you for saying what we always wanted to but did not have the guts to say.

Anonymous: The Saudis will love this; this is just the kind of punishment they enjoy giving!

Abhishek Singhvi: Your association with communal BJP proves that you are a Gandhi by accidental birth; only Rahul was planned!

Amar Singh: Your statement is totally communal. BJP is a communal party that should be banned. India is a secular country. We need to protect and promote truly secular organisations like SIMI which believe that real secularism will be ushered in only when India becomes an Islamic state governed totally by the Sharia.

Bal Thackeray: I love this Gandhi; he's different!

Varun: Thank you uncle, I was beginning to feel orphaned...

RS Prasad: Don't feel so low, you will remain our candidate and are also going to be our star campaigner!

Abhishek Singhvi: BJP's double-speak and communal mindset stands exposed.

Varun: I am a proud Gandhi, a proud Hindu and a proud Indian in equal measure.

Abhishek Singhvi: A Gandhi saying that he is a proud Hindu is bad news for the Congress that has always believed in courting only minorities.

Priyanka: You should read the Gita.

Varun: Why? You think I don't know which one of us represents the Kauravs and which one the Pandavs?

Priyanka: I was actually thinking about Kandhari...

Varun: Be sure it is not my mom.

Rahul: But it was BJP's Foreign Minister who took terrorists to Kandahar. I didn't know there was a lady by that name too.

Varun: You mean you haven't read the Gita?

Rahul: I am blind to religion.

Varun: Only Hindu religion?

Rahul: You should not carry anger and hatred.

Varun: Yes I know. It was all love that drove me and my mom out of the Gandhi household after my father died.

Rajdeep Sardesai: You cannot be allowed to get away for making a hate speech. Only terrorists "who have no religion" and hardened criminals are allowed that privilege.

Varun: But the CD is doctored. I stand for Hindus. Hindutva is not against anybody. (Inaudibly) Except perhaps Muslims.

Rajdeep Sardesai: Does it matter? You are a political novice from LSE and yet you have stolen everybody's thunder.

Varun: But I was "truthfully" commenting on the atmosphere in Pilibhit...so what if I got a bit carried away? Remember Rahul also once spoke about one Kalawati and everybody thought he was taking a dig at Mayawati?

Rajdeep Sardesai: You are going to make CNN-IBN's poll predictions look even more rigged than they are. The Congress may now get no seats in UP except those of your aunt and cousin.

Varun: That is exactly what I want. I am the real Gandhi.

Rajdeep Sardesai: How dare you spoil our private party? I will not let you steal the crown of my Crown Prince. An example needs to be set to uphold the highest ideals of dynastic secularism that your great grandfather espoused.

Varun: But what about the situation in Pilibhit?

Barkha Dutt: Total freedom for minorities to say and do what they like is what defines India's secularism. Raising a voice against them is rank communalism and simply cannot be tolerated.

Varun: But you never gave that sort of freedom to that poor blogger who wrote only a couple of harmless sentences against you.

Barkha Dutt: I am Barkha Dutt. My name may sound Hindu, but I am an atheist and have no time for imaginary gods like Ram. So, I too am a minority and hence cannot be criticised. Why do you think people call me Burkha?

Varun: Jai Sri Ram! You don't believe in Ram?

Barkha Dutt: I believe that to survive in this competitive world, prayers to Ram or any such mythical character are not going to help. One has just to know how to ram one's point home. And, the only real Rahm I know is Barack Obama's brilliant Chief of Staff. I can say "Jai Ho" only to him.

Varun: Is your saying that Ram is mythical not reflective of your "hate" towards Hindu religion?

Barkha Dutt: That is what we have always been taught in our secular educational institutions; Hindu gods are mythical, they never existed. Why pick on me? Karunanidhi says your Ram was a drunkard. And he is right. Only a drunkard or the communal BJP can claim that Adam's Bridge was built by monkeys for Ram!

Naveen Chawla: It pays to remain loyal to real, living gods and goddesses who can ram their way through and put you where you want to be despite stiff opposition from Ram's followers!

Varun: Why did you not give me even a hearing before finding me guilty?

Naveen Chawla: Someone told me that you were going to take away even the remaining 1% voters still with the Congress in UP. The Election Commission, therefore, had no choice but to hastily put out the unprecedented advice that you should not be allowed to contest the elections.

Varun: But that is blatant partisanship; the EC is a constitutional body that is supposed to be neutral.

Naveen Chawla: I can't be an ungrateful backstabber like Laloo Yadav, can I?

Varun: Remember you were my father's Man Friday during the Emergency?

Naveen Chawla: I'm still with the Family. You and your mom are ones who opted out, not me.

Varun: Why did you not issue the same advisory for Mukhtar Ansari?

Rajdeep Sardesai: Err...an alert media had told him that Allahabad High Court was going to bar him from contesting.

Varun: What about Atiq Ahmed?

Amar Singh: He has only been charge sheeted for innumerable heinous crimes including murder. Nothing has been proved against him. He has not been convicted yet for any of them. How can Chawla issue an advisory against such an innocent soul till the courts give a judgment?

Abhishek Singhvi: Or the Congress High Command asks him to.

Varun: What about Sanjay Dutt, Mohd Azharuddin, Pappu Yadav...

Rahul: Chawla has been made CEC to ensure holding of "fair" elections. He is not meant to stall them or to let any party do anything that puts the Congress at a disadvantage. If he starts advising bans like you are suggesting, there will be hardly any "powerful" candidates left to fight the elections!

Varun: But that is totally unfair to me.

Rahul: Before you lost your cool and made that famous speech, you should have remembered that there are still some people who will listen to only one Gandhi. And that is clearly not you.

Varun: This is not that 'panja'(hand) of the Congress. This is the hand of the Lotus...
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