In search of missing person
In Search of Missing Person, Gollapudi Maruti Rao. There was a box item in this paper the other day by the voters of Eluru Lok Sabha Constituency. It was a poster they have displayed on the walls all over Eluru.
There was a box item in this paper the other day by the voters of Eluru Lok Sabha Constituency. It was a poster they have displayed on the walls all over Eluru. The poster said that their leader, whom they had voted to power five years ago, has been missing for some time. These people are at a loss to know the whereabouts of their leader. Anybody who can offer any information about his whereabouts will be suitably rewarded. And this leader will be taught a lesson.
These voters must be having enough sense of humour and equal amount of heart burn. They might have become philosophical having lost their confidence on their leader, faith on the system, deceit at the hands of these leaders. Hence this poster!
As a matter of fact, this poster will hold good to any Lok Sabha constituency anywhere in any state. For instance, I am staying at Visakhapatnam. Take a random sample of any ten persons on the road and shoot only two questions.
1. Did he ever see (not meet - no, it is a tall order!) his leader?
2. And who is their leader?
I am ready to wager any sum to prove that almost all of them will fail in giving a correct reply.
An interesting example was given by the veteran film actor Aamir Khan in his popular telecast “Satyameva Jayate’’ the other day. A pilgrim got down a train at Varanasi. Loud came a greeting even before he touched the ground: “Hello Chinna!’’ The pilgrim was surprised. How did he know his name? It is there on the reservation chart pasted on the bogie. “May I ask who you are?’’ was his meek response. Pat came a slap on his back. “Your uncle surely! No wonder you don’t remember me. I deserted home during your father’s time taking sanyas and came to Varanasi. I remember your father- a jovial buddy.’’
“But he is no…..’’
“I know. I know. That’s why you are here. He will straight away go to heaven no doubt. But first let us go to the holy river Gangamayi and have a religious dip before you have the darshan of Kasi Visweshwara. Come on.’’
The pilgrim is happy that at least he could have somebody to guide him at this religious place. They go to Dasaswamedha Ghat and this pilgrim keeps all his belongings and the purse on the shore and gets down the steps to have the holy dip-a long cherished desire. He takes a dip and gets up to find his uncle missing with all his belongings! That is the plight of the present day voter. He is stripped naked every five years and left neck deep in water, not knowing what to do. These nameless politicians take him for a ride like this faceless uncle, says Aamir Khan.
These uncles-our beloved leaders-will be at our doorsteps in the next 30 days unasked and then they disappear into their dens, be it their factories, Assemblies or Tihar jails. They occasionally give darshan to us in TVs talking about ‘social welfare’ and ‘national unity’. If, by chance, you happen to cross their path-they will ask “What uncle! Who are you? What is your name?’’ Did not their people give you Rs 500 and a sachet of country arrack?
One may wonder as to why the voter is electing these leaders to power time and again in spite of them not delivering on their promises. For one thing, there was no NOTA to reject them altogether and had to settle for the best of the bad choices. And the voter was playing God all along. It was Rabindranath Tagore who said that “Every child comes into this world with a message that God is not yet disappointed of humanity.’’ Not anymore. Faith is construed by these leaders as the voters’ inherent weakness and helplessness. And the voter is not willing to be taken for a ride anymore. And hence the posters!
However, I congratulate the Eluru voters for having the sense of humour and live perennially with their leaders’ deceit. But I sympathise with their lack of sensitivity in trying to teach him a lesson, if at all they meet him. They should know that after exhausting all the lessons and enriching themselves with thorough prognosis, these leaders disappeared from their focus.
But the fact that the present day voter is not willing to barter his right and dignity for a thoughtless freebie is evident from the disgust he is showing in these posters. The voter has become wise enough to enjoy all the freebies these leaders offer and still can reject them in the polling booth- is an indication- these posters convey.
It is time these leaders started learning to “read’’ to be able to read the writing on the wall. It is not people’s agony anymore. It is a warrant. A wake up call. And importantly- a death knell.