Who is Gourav Vallabh? And why has he been fielded against Jharkhand CM Raghubar Das?
Congress has sprung surprise by fielding an academic and party spokesperson to contest against Jharkhand CM. Those who know him believe that he is a formidable opponent and Das is in for tough time
He has done his M.Com. He Is a Chartered Accountant and a Company Secretary. He taught Finance at the XLRI (Xavier Labour Relations Institute), Jamshedpur and the 42-year old Professor has a Doctorate in Credit Risk Assessment.
Prof Gourav Vallabh, besides being an author of several books and having worked in the banking sector, also has a doctorate in credit risk assessment. But he is today largely known as the Congress spokesperson who routinely gets the better of BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra.
During a TV discussion, when Patra was waxing eloquent on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of building a ‘Five Trillion economy’, Vallav quietly asked if Patra knew how many zeroes were there in a trillion. While the BJP spokesperson sought to dodge the question by wisecracking that the question should be put to Rahul Gandhi, Vallabh persisted and proved his point. Patra had no clue.
The Congress spokesperson readily admits that a majority of Indians may not know the answer. They may not even be aware of what a ‘trillion’ means. “But when you keep chanting trillion, trillion day in and day out and yet you have no idea what it is, then you are actually misleading the people, even hoodwinking them,” he maintains.
Similarly, when BJP leaders cry themselves hoarse and swear by the name of Ram but have no idea whether Tulsidas wrote Ram Charit Manas in Sanskrit or in Avadhi, their ignorance shows they are charlatans, he exclaims. His intention is not to ridicule their ignorance, he adds, but just to show them up for what they are.
Speaking of his combative and aggressive opposition to the BJP, Vallabh does not mince his words. His idea of India is that of a liberal, inclusive India, he says. “ My daughter may not be able to recite from the Ram Charit Manas but I am not going to tell her to go to Pakistan,” he says, adding that he was determined to expose the ignorance of people who swore by Ram and Ramayan but know zilch about either.
Sambit Patra, he acknowledges, is a doctor and a surgeon and if Patra asks him a question on human anatomy, he may not be able to answer. “But then I am not going to speak on anatomy or subjects I don’t know about on TV channels either,” he exclaims.
Vallabh, who is a devout Hindu in personal life, claims to conduct ‘Puja’ every day in the Puja Room in his house. There are several Congress leaders, he says, who spend hours in their Puja room worshipping and praying. But they do not show off, he told an interviewer. Referring to Dr Manmohan Singh, he quips that as Prime Minister Dr Singh did not promote himself or go abroad to build a personality cult. But he went abroad to promote national interest.
Articulate and a good orator, Vallabh says he questions his students to test their comprehension, political rivals to expose their ignorance and bigotry and the Government to make it accountable.
Jharkhand chief minister Raghubar Das needs to get ready for questions that are sure to be posed to him by Prof Vallabh.
- Indian National Congress
- Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das
- Prof Gourav Vallabh
- Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP)