The longest-running entertainment show that keeps India occupied and amused — the constant sparring among our colourful political parties and their posterboys — may end very soon, if we don't stop a certain Uma Bharti. The fiery sanyasin, who returned to the BJP after six years earlier this month, is on an acquisition spree. No, they are not material things but relationships, which casts doubt on her detached sanyasin tag.
On Sunday, at a meeting in Lucknow, the fiery sanyasin who was expelled from the BJP in 2005 after she took on her 'elder brother' LK Advani, addressed Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP superboss Mayawati as her sister. Naturally, there was a little bit of sibling rivalry there too. She, the elder sister, we presume, said that her support would be for the state's farmers who have lost their land to development and not her 'sister', Mayawati. Of course, we might as well slip in the fact that assembly elections in this crucial state are due next year. The lady from Tikamgarh, Madhya Pradesh, did not stop at this. As she held up a sword that was presented to her, she lovingly offered her blessings to Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi on his 41st birthday and called him the 'son' of her 'elder brother' Rajiv Gandhi. Here too there was a touch of realpolitik: she asked the Gandhi scion to remember that if his mother, Sonia Gandhi, belongs from Rome, then his bua belongs to Ram. And no, she did not call Sonia Gandhi bhabhi.
If Ms Bharti continues at this rate and others follow suit we will have a peaceful political landscape in this country since everyone will be part of the same family. And that would be disastrous for people like us; minus our daily dose of tu-tu mein- mein politics, we will have nothing to look forward to every morning. But the greater risk is that Ms Bharti is in danger of losing the 'fiery sanyasin' tag. How can she openly squabble those within the parivar, sangh or otherwise?