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Mahabharata, retold

If you want to understand the current trend in the public discourse on graft, then get the hang of the scriptures.

india Updated: Jun 15, 2012 00:14 IST
Hindustan Times

We can't resist it. This is clearly a case of the devil quoting the scriptures. First we have Prashant Bhushan likening the prime minister to Shikhandi from the Mahabharata. For those of you who are not quite up on the scriptures, Shikhandi was able to take the form of a woman and shield the Pandavas in war. While Team Anna unravelled the knots it tied itself up into trying to play that down, comes another allusion to the Mahabharata from Kiran Bedi, another leading light in the anti-corruption movement. She has said the PM is like the blind king Dhritarashtra who supported the Kauravas even after they attempted to disrobe Draupadi. We have spoken in these columns about the Christ-like propensity of the Anna brigade to make a little go a long way - to be precise it seems to have stretched its resources as Jesus did with a few loaves and fishes to feed thousands.

Meanwhile, we can only presume that the perpetually snarling Arvind Kejriwal is doing a Shiv tandav in the background somewhere. And how can we forget the fountainhead of all this anti-corruption zeal, dear Anna himself. It would be no exaggeration to say that he sees himself in the role of Bhishma Pitamah, a statesman extraordinaire. But unlike Bhishma, who tried to bring the Pandavas and Kauravas together and avert the battle of Kurukshetra, our Anna is all for a bit of combat. We are sure that left to themselves, some Congress leaders would like to compare themselves to Ram or Laxman, fearless warriors who can take on the Anna lot any day.

Those of you who are following this epic battle between Team Anna and the government, we can only recommend that you read some of the more prominent scriptures like the Bible, the Koran, the Gita and the Upanishads to begin with. You will need this to understand the current trend in the public discourse on corruption. Why you could even become a paid up member of the latter-day crusades.

First Published: Jun 15, 2012 00:13 IST