This is not the story of a man who once sold tea and later ‘sold’ dreams to the people and managed to reach top echleons of power in the biggest democracy in the world.
This is not the story of the man and his rise from the margins of an organisation which is called the biggest cultural organisation in the world nor it is revisiting the stories of ‘bravery and fearlessness of his childhood’ which can marvel a bollywood film or his alleged wanderings in the Himalayas in search of a guru or to fulfill his spiritual quest.
This is also not a recap of the role played by an international PR agency which was appointed by him a decade back to “seek professional and rare expertise” in reaching out to broadest mass of people with a fresh message.
This is also not to revisit this man’s thoughts which find mention in his book which compare the work of cleaning an ‘experience in spirituality.'
This is also not the story of this man who abandoned his legally married wife merely few months after their union and this is no exercise in telling you that he never went back to enquire about her nor he took initiative to formalise the separation.
This is also not to repeat the fact ad nauseum that he never disclosed his marital status to the outside world so much so that even one of his own deputies – who had worked with him for more than two decades – did not have any clarity over this aspect of his life. Lesser mortals like us would remain baffled why the silence continued to reign all these years.
May be he suffered from selective amnesia for a long duration in his life or was supposedly so engrossed in the work that he considered working for the ‘nation’ that he even forgot to mention it to others. May be the organisation with which he worked frowned upon any such union and he desisted from sharing the news.
This is also not to share with you that when the need arose and he was expected to put the matters straight, he supposedly faced Hamlet’s paradox about his being married or not married, and preferred to remain ambiguous.This is no comment on those people who could question this ambiguity, who were in seats of power, also preferred to look the other way or maintained silence.
This is also not to tell you that when he toured the country mobilising people to march on the citadels of power – to break the monopoly of the dynasts – he had no qualms in maintaining an ambiguity about his own life. And this style still continues. In fact, once he even told the people that “he is basically a ‘faqir’, a man of god, with no worldly attachment or possession and that it would not take him a moment to leave his office and go away.”
This is no attempt to tell you that few years back his selective amnesia or his ambiguity vis-a-vis his marital status was finally over and he formally acknowledged that he was ‘married’.
This is also not to tell you that for all those people who looked at him as a ‘messiah’ – who adored him – who voted for him in overwhelming numbes, who supported him; did not complain at all even when they came to know that he had been very selective with his words while describing his marital status.
This is also not a comment on the immense tolerance level of the people, that they preferred to nod their head even when one of his deputy frankly admitted that one of his key promises to win over people was merely a ‘jumla’.
This little note has nothing to add to all these things and many more which are available in public domain.
May be later day historians would be able to throw light on them better or sit in a judgement. May be they would able to say whether he was really the ‘visionary statesman’ India waited or was a modern day reincarnation of a medieval king who had decreed to shift India’s capital without larger consultation.
This is just to tell you that the woman he abandoned
- Who waited for him all the decades of his life
- Who just yearned that she at least has a glimpse of his vast house where he is supposedly guarded by hundreds of security people
- Whose application for passport was rejected as she has no marriage certificate
- Who suffered silently all these years for no fault of hers and continued to live with her brother’s family
... still worships him as a god.
Do not know why?
Do not know why?
Do not know why?
[Subhash Gatade is the author of Pahad Se Uncha Aadmi (2010) Godse’s Children: Hindutva Terror in India,(2011) and The Saffron Condition: The Politics of Repression and Exclusion in Neoliberal India(2011). He is also the Convener of New Socialist Initiative (NSI) Email : email@example.com.]
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