Sunday, September 14, 2008

Namaste, Madam President!

Again, a pretty old article that i had penned...

Namaste, Madam President.

Notwithstanding all the mudslinging that the NDA indulged in over the past month, Madam Pratibha Patil managed to come out trumps this past week. India got its first woman ‘first citizen’ in 60 years.

The presidential race saw the entire Electoral College stoop down to the levels of a municipal election. Allegations of tokenism, venality, misappropriation flew fast and furious. After the storm has now taken refuge as simmering discontent in the minds of all NDA loyalists, one tends to ponder what the reciprocation of Mrs. Shekhawat (nee Patil) would be to all those people who left no stone unturned in besmirching her name.

Credit has to be given where it is due, and this case is no exception. The woman maintained a stoic silence during the entire campaign. The silence was interpreted as her inability to refute the charges leveled against her. I would see it as a case of ‘Let the dogs bark; my caravan shall go on’. The only thing that remains left to be seen is whether she behaves as a true blue states’woman’ when it comes to imparting a decision in favor of her detractors.

Its just a day past after Dr. APJ has bid adieu to Raisina Hill. It’s still too early in the day to go on and analyze all the statements of Madam Patil and pass judgments on her. Let us give her some time. After all, Dr. APJ also had his share of bloopers ; One of application of president’s rule in Bihar at the insistence of the UPA government.

But one thing is for sure. In Dr. APJ, we had a president who was approachable. A new age guru, who took the realm of presidency to a new level altogether. A true statesman, who did not budge while sitting at the feet of the entire media fraternity with his legs crossed while attending their queries and giving them pointers at the Ramnath Goenka memorial debate. In him, we had a figure like Nehru. In him, we had someone whom both the older generation and the younger generation could look up with reverence.

From all that we have seen of Madam Patil, she does not look one, who can replicate Dr Kalam’s charisma.

Time will tell.

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