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Saturday, Sep 21, 2019

Mahajan 'could never get the right press'

?I am not keeping any low profile. Profiles of politicians are always decided by the press.

india Updated: Apr 23, 2006 00:33 IST
Shekhar Iyer
Shekhar Iyer

“I am not keeping any low profile. Profiles of politicians are always decided by the press. If you talk, they say you are talking too much; if you don't, they say you have a low profile. It is very difficult to judge how an adequate profile can be kept.”

These were Pramod Mahajan’s words when he began to lose sheen as a Union minister and before he opted to return to the BJP as a general secretary. Controversies have always dogged him, as a minister and a BJP functionary, but he always felt he could never get the “right press”.

A few days ago, in an informal chat with journalists, Mahajan, believed he was viewed differently by different people, depending on whether they were friend or foe. “If you ask my friends, they will say ‘I am yaron ka yaar’ but my enemies will think the opposite.”

Mahajan has never been afraid — to lash out at his rivals and to own up to his mistakes. When the party came down on him like a ton of bricks for the 2004 poll debacle, Mahajan took full blame for the ‘India Shining’ campaign, whose architect was was actually L.K. Advani. His shining moment came just four months ago — at the party’s silver jubilee fete in Mumbai — when A.B. Vajpayee called him ‘Laxman’ to Advani’s ‘Ram’. This was when Rajnath Singh was to take charge as BJP chief.”

As all in the BJP wondered what Vajpayee was hinting at by making such a statement, Mahajan simply said: “Vajpayee liked my speech and the arrangements. That’s all. I know nobody is going to make me BJP chief.” It was this very bluntness that earned Mahajan a lot of enemies.

Despite his simple explanation of Vajpayee’s statement, everyone knew things concerning Mahajan were anything but simple. He desired to be the BJP’s ‘Ram’ but he knew that he would have to wait and show the party just how indispensable he was.

And he is on his way to doing just this. Mahajan took the slow and steady route to success and took pride in the fact that he wasn’t a “paratrooper” who landed on a top position but worked his way up the party heirarchy.

First Published: Apr 23, 2006 00:33 IST