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Some give and take

An uncontrollable urge to channel wealth back and forth is the hallmark of the Brothers Raja.

india Updated: Apr 12, 2011 22:52 IST

The family of the former telecom minister A Raja is nothing if not consistent. Even as Raja is cooling his heels in the clink, his older brother has got himself in a spot of bother when the police nabbed him distributing cash and calendars to voters in Tamil Nadu. This is proof if any were needed that the prospect of incarceration is no deterrent to the determined bribe-giver.

Or it could be that the need to spread wealth, irrespective of the means, runs deeply in the genetic make-up of the Raja family. It also suggests that the Raja siblings are not very adept crooks, the second having bitten the dust soon after the first. But the offender might well argue that he was not doing anything other politicians are not engaged in. Come elections, the vote-seeker has to come up with ever innovative ways to catch the voter's attention. So if one party offers a mixer as has been the case in Tamil Nadu, the rival has to throw in a grinder as well. If a buffalo is on offer, it has to be bested by sweetening it with at least a chicken. Now that Raja is out of public sight, the poor brother was ensuring that people don't forget him through the smart use of the calendar which bore the former's picture as also that of the party leader M Karunanidhi. Earlier, a son of the DMK supremo allegedly tried to improve the health of the voters by plying them with Horlicks, something the portly rival from the AIADMK objected to.

Now the brothers Raja could argue that this is their way of giving back to the public what the public gave via the money so lovingly entrusted to them during the allocation of the 2G spectrum. This may not carry much conviction with the Election Commission but we are sure that the contrite brother can explain this conduct of public duty. Meanwhile, if you want a free calendar, do write in to your nearest DMK office and get to feel like a Raja for a few days.