Delhi musings: Protest against a veteran protester
Kejriwal’s ‘misdemeanour’ in Delhi Assembly must have rattled BJP top brass enough to import the Karnataka lad to lead the protests
How does one protest against someone who himself has been a protester par excellence? That protester par excellence is now the national convenor of a party that rules the states of Delhi and Punjab in addition to his being the Chief Minister of Delhi.
So, when the BJP had to organise a protest against our man AK, they had to put up an act that matched the stature of the man who would have gotten an honourary doctorate in dharnas from any leading university. Not finding meritorious protesters in their ranks in the Delhi set up, BJP decided to import protesters from elsewhere. The protests were organised outside AK’s residence at Civil Lines under the banner of Yuva Morcha of BJP.
These were led by BJP’s Karnataka firebrand MP whom you often get to see on TV debates outshouting other panellists and giving discourses on history that at times even Wikipedia can’t authenticate. The protest was organised to demand an apology from Kejriwal apparently for his speech in the Delhi Assembly.
It is obvious that AK’s mocking BJP MLAs and party leaders in Delhi Assembly for going at great length to promote the controversial film The Kashmir Files didn’t go down too well with the party bosses. His open offer to the BJP party workers to join AAP and do something ‘constructive’ in building the nation coupled with AAP indicating that it’s Gujarat next, now that they rule Punjab, must have rattled the BJP high command enough to import the Karnataka lad to lead the protests.
The protesters did the regulation protest stuff and more. They landed up breaching the security bandobast at the CM’s residence, damaging CCTV cameras and breaking the boom barrier at the gate. Some news outlets reported that the protestors even painted the gate in saffron colour.
The entire episode seems a little funny as the protesters were from BJP’s youth wing and those trying to resist them were poor Delhi cops who report in to the BJP’s powerhouse of a leader who also occupies the Home Minister’s office. Even funnier was the reaction of the Aam Aadmi Party to the hullabaloo. AAP accused the BJP of wanting to kill Kejriwal through this “properly planned attack”.
Not one to miss an opportunity for self-promotion, our man AK reacted by stating that he was ready to sacrifice his life as the country was more important. Some pressing matters must have kept our man AK busy or else he would have addressed the nation at 7.45 pm (8.00 pm is someone else’s chartered territory) and would have cried hoarse on how he loves the country and is willing to die for it.
It is also likely that his coach on comic-timing, the Mann of Punjab, doesn’t know much about shedding tears and their timing. Dilliwalahs, once again, are left wondering what the entire fuss is all about. Is the burning issue the plight and sufferings of Kashmiri Pandits or is it that mediocre film about them that’s raking in moolah at the box office? Time we get real, guys.
There is an interesting race on who is the supreme master of symbolism and semantics. It seems Delhi does this to people. While someone from Ahmedabad, now housed in Delhi, is the original master of this art form - our man AK is no less and is a worthy challenger. He was seen sending signals of his proficiency in the craft from Ahmedabad recently.
Riding high on the Punjab electoral victory, Kejriwal was on a two day visit of Gujarat along with the Punjab CM. While at Ahmedabad they made a trip to the Sabarmati Ashram and were photographed spinning a charka. AK even claimed that he considers himself blessed to have been born in the country in which Gandhiji was born. Contrast this with reports coming out of Punjab that the pictures of the father of the nation have been removed from government offices. Someone needs to tell this IIT Kharagpur pass out that we live in the world of internet and that news travels from one state to another.
(The writer blogs at stateofdelhi.in)
(This was first published in National Herald on Sunday)
(Views are personal)