Saturday, 14 April 2012

Where's the tender love Mamta di?

Mamta translated means tender love but this tenderness is lost in translation as Mamta di cracks down on the creator of a well meaning, if not insipid cartoon. No one would have noticed it but the draconian action of arresting the cartoonist has placed the cartoon in the same shelf space as the 'Satanic verses.' Cyberspace is aflame with outrage that basic fundamental rights of citizens are being violated but I see the problem a little differently. We are witnessing a phenomenon where national parties are in retreat and regional parties, ostensibly taking up the cause of their citizenry are replacing national parties in state elections. Many of these regional parties are led by charismatic leaders who rule with an iron hand and brook no interference. For many of these leaders even mild criticism is construed as a personal attack on them. The point I am making is that the liberal space and air one breathes under a 'national party' has of late started diminishing under state ruled 'regional parties.'
But to come back to Mamta di. I do genuinely believe that she is one of the most gutsy and energetic politicians in the Indian political class. There is much to admire for what she stands for. But there is an old saying that ' the revolution devours it's children.' That is the danger she has to watch out for. Charismatic leaders are usually surrounded by powerful, vested interests who take away the leader from the very same people form where these leaders draw their strength. Don't let that happen to you Mamta di! Show us the tender love you are capable of!

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