The shenanigans around Lalit Modi seem to involve Vasundhara Raje helping him for being a close family friend and Sushma Swaraj assisting him on humanitarian grounds. There are good reasons for doing so, as these historical documents show:
Letter of recommendation for Attila the Hun from his bum chum: I grew up with Attila and he’s a wonderful chap. How well I remember our childish escapades — cutting off an arm here, a leg there and the occasional head. Nobody could massacre and pillage better than him. Of course, he’s older now and should know better. But I think he deserves support for just one more genocide, for old times’ sake.
Letter of recommendation from Hitler’s headmaster. To whom it may concern: This is to inform you that young Adolf was a good lad who liked marching around. True, his subsequent behaviour may not meet with universal approbation, but boys will be boys. He always kept his shoes properly shined.
Letter of recommendation from Genghiz Khan’s girlfriend: Genghiz is really HOT. One look at him and I was swept off my feet. He’s so terribly macho, he can cut off a head with one blow of his sword. The way he arranges those public executions, he’s such a fun party guy. And his two-pack is to die for. Honestly, I would do anything for him, absolutely anything.
Letter for helping the Emperor Nero on humanitarian grounds from his Royal Astrologer: Yes, I know Nero was fiddling when Rome was burning. But do you guys know he has been cursed by fate? As they say, ‘The fault, dear Romans, lies not in ourselves, but in our stars.’ Do you know his Saturn is in bad shape, not to speak of Uranus? Also, he suffers from fiddlemania, a strong propensity to fiddle inappropriately. He needs your support.
Letter asking for compassion for Ravana from his nurse: I know Ravana gets a bad press these days. But have you ever thought how difficult it is to manage ten heads? Most of us can hardly manage one. One head wants to go to the beach, another wants ice-cream, a third wants booze, the fourth wants to sleep, while the other six only want to argue with each other. It’s enough to drive anybody mad. He is more to be pitied than censured and you guys should stop hounding him.
As for the typo about Ms Irani’s educational qualifications, there are many historical instances of typos, such as this one:
George W Bush: I believe in the institution of marriage — the union of man and woman in holy acrimony. There is nobody as sweet as your awfully wedded wife. My life has had its ups and downs — one day I was mad President of the Untied States, another day I was peeing into the abyss. You see, wife is what happens to you when you are busy making other plans. I have, all my life, been interested in pubic affairs. Sure, life has its little incontinences, but it is also full of fun and slaughter. That about craps up this massage.
Manas Chakravarty is the Consulting Editor, Mint. The views expressed are personal.