Uttar Pradesh’s youngest chief minister can now literally enjoy the fruits of his labour. Famed Padmashree-winning horticulturist Haji Kaleemullah Khan has named a mango after Akhilesh Yadav, one which he tells us will weigh up to a kilo when mature. Now we fear that this bit of news will mean that a desire will take root among others that some delectable piece of vegetation be named after them. Nicole Kidman may have a rose named after her, but not too many here would qualify for such a fragrant award. But, if left to us, we might be able to come up with a few suitable items to be named after our politicos.
Dear Mamatadi could be the name of a hybrid between a karela and a mirchi if it were possible, fiery and bitter at the same time. The elegant Sheila Dikshit could qualify for a refined grapefruit, an acquired taste but one which could grow on you. Now we come to the more tricky ones. What could Pranabda lend his name to? A money plant perhaps? The homegrown and difficult to fathom jackfruit could be named after the incoherent defence minister AK Antony, even as Salman Khurshid could be the moniker for a low-hanging custard apple. Now for the really difficult ones. Sonia Gandhi could be the name for the mystical pomegranate or could she be the unfathomable artichoke? And the resilient black grape could be named after Rahul Gandhi. The homegrown jamun would go well with the rustic charms of a Laloo Prasad. Mayawati could be a coconut, hard to crack and her compatriot J Jayalalithaa, dare we be rude, a papaya. Nationalist Congress Party strongman Sharad Pawar may be the name for a hardy perennial like the pine. Our exalted leader Pratibha Patil could be a shrinking violet.
No doubt, you are now eager to learn what we could name after Manmohan Singh. Not an easy one this. Let’s tell you what, write in and tell us what you think. We can think of a few, but we’ll prune our thoughts for now.