An aam aadmi’s princely dinner could be what royalty pays for its coffee.
While on one hand, the fledgling Aam Aadmi Party is hosting fund-raising dinners across the state to mop up funds for party’s poll campaign, Punjab Congress chief Captain Amarinder Singh footed a whopping Rs 10 lakh bill for ‘Coffee with Captain’ programme in Chandigarh on Friday.
The gala show at the Beant Singh Memorial in Sector 42 had two screenboards --- flashing selfies of youth --- a massive well-lit stage, chairs and the team of poll strategist Prashant Kishor and not to forget the piping hot coffee.
A gift hamper containing a cap, a T-shirt, a notebook and a pen was given to every participant. The inexperience of Kishore’s Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC) team ---dressed in black tees and blue jeans --- was evident as the restless youth jostled with each other to ask questions and the one-hour show ended in chaos.
Most in the team are new appointees --- college freshers having their first brew of politics. There were also murmurs that some youth volunteers of the Congress had been given slips and mikes were passed on them.
As Captain fielded expected questions on drug and unemployment in Punjab and his agenda for development, also came some bouncers, which organisers attributed to “tutored” youth volunteers of AAP. One of them --- to a thunderous applause from the crowd --- told Amarinder that he would not be able to appear for his exams if he had as poor attendance record the Congress leader had in the Lok Sabha.
Captain was flummoxed and did lose his cool. As the show ended in chaos, the rest of the questions were left in the realm of virtual to be answered by “Punjab da Captain” --- the campaign on Facebook which is promising personal coffee with Captain for posting the picture that garners maximum page views. For the purpose, a selfie-contest was also held.