How do we make the serial hugger speak to doctors? By sending him phone numbers?

He still cannot stay away from cameras, maintains the humble ‘Gamcha’ is as effective as the ‘fashionable masks’ doctors are demanding and spends hours on phone but has no time to listen to doctors

Photo Courtesy: Twitter
Photo Courtesy: Twitter

Rupa Gulab

It’s about time the nation woke up to the disturbing fact that the current prime minister is not, well, normal. There are many theories floating around about what exactly ails him, and here I explore a few:

The S Word:

No no—not Swamp Thing, the word is senile! The poor old dear is going through his second childhood. While Covid-19 is ravaging the world and our nation, he’s carelessly playing ‘Simon Says’ instead of aggressively testing citizens and providing Personal Protection Equipment to medical staff (in fact, he delayed ordering the manufacture of PPE till he announced the 21 day lockdown because he was busy playing a fun game called ‘Tipple Topple Governments’ with his desi friend Amit Shah.

First, Simon/Dear Leader instructed citizens (many of whom behave like they are in their second childhood too) to bang thaalis to make the virus deaf. Then he told them to switch off their lights for nine minutes to blind the virus. This nine-minute period was critical, we gather: while the virus blinked in the dark, he planned to rummage through his fancy dress box. Beneath his flouncy Marie Antoinette frock, elaborate Muhammad Bin Tughlaq costume and casual Don Quixote outfit, he will dig out a pair of orange lycra tights. Then he will slip into them, sneak up behind the virus, hit it on the head with a frying pan (pinched from Mummyji’s humble kitchen), and Indians will be saved, hooray! Or maybe not.

See, his supporters have come up with the usual psychobabble to explain the significance of those nine minutes. Special mention must be made of the former President of the Indian Medical Association, Dr. KK Agarwal. Our jaws dropped to our ankles when he went quackity quack about “collective consciousness”. After being treated to jeers on Social Media, Dr/Qk KK Agarwal hastily waddled back to his little pond and is now presumably hiding behind a forest of reeds. I’m leaving this here because suddenly I have a craving for Duck à l'orange.

The Wannabe King complex:

When the Dear Leader speaks, I’m reminded of ‘Amar Chitra Katha’ comics. I see a bored king on a shiny throne clapping his hands and ordering his subjects to “entertain him with song and dance”. The subjects readily comply, or else “off with their heads”, of course.

This fits in perfectly with one of Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tales, ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes.’ Published in 1837, the warning still rings true. There are no adults brave enough to tell the Emperor that he’s naked. Certainly no one in India’s mainstream media or the Supreme Court. Heck, not even the bravest of brave Indians who guard our borders! That’s the naked truth.

The Lonely Syndrome:

While social distancing is a breeze for some, it’s not easy for this serial hugger. He needs people to admire him 24x7 or else he will wither away and all that will be left of him is that large chip on his shoulder. He’s getting jittery because quite a few chief ministers from non-BJP states have been praised for their calm manner and practical solutions while dealing with the outbreak. He looks like a flibbertigibbet compared to them. Which is why he simply cannot socially distance himself from cameras. He needs to interact with VIPs like Heads of State, Royalty, Bollywood stars and sports stars to make us think he’s very important. That’s why his days are packed with video conferences and phone calls. He’s on the phone longer than love struck teenagers these days!

Oh well, since he’s at it, can we please shame him into talking to doctors too? Somehow, I think they may have better ideas to fight Covid-19 than the childish ones his PR agencies throw up. While we’re aware that his Government ordered the police to take names and phone numbers of doctors from Safdarjung Hospital who implored the public to donate masks, etc. (since the government wasn’t giving enough), the move was to threaten them to shut up, not to talk to them.

So, here’s my plan: Let’s send phone numbers of our doctors to his twitter account. Now, if all of us do it, it will truly show that India is united against fighting Covid-19 in a responsible manner like mature adults, not selfie-crazy attention seekers!

Views expressed in the article are the author’s own

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