DISCLAIMER: All characters are real. Any resemblance to living or dead is purely intentional!
“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” – Abraham Lincoln
Once upon a time, there occurred some geological changes in Asia which lead to the formation of the country Indiana. What Lincoln said long ago fits completely in the context of Indiana.
The Indiana has been suffering from democratic paralysis right from its birth, but the recent hullabaloo is due to the upcoming presidential nominations. The presidential house awaits its new president and this has evoked the dormant dreams of many.
The two major alliances of Indiana are- UPA [Useless Pernicious Alliance] and NDA [National Derogatory Alliance]. Both are morally (or rather ‘immorally’) on a par with each other. At present UPA is in power and, like most coalition governments, the political parties in this ‘coalition’ too, suffer frequent collisions with each other. Still, one party needs to ride on other party’s coattails. To solve the problem of presidential nominations UPA has organized a meeting with all other alliances and regional parties in a ‘Seven-star’ hotel, under the pretext of discussing the means for the development of ‘slum’ areas. [Pun intended].
The meeting started with a huge feast and after watching some ‘hardcore’ action movies, the political leaders accumulated in the air-conditioned conference hall to put forward their choices for the nominations.
NDA started with nominating a well-known scientist cum ‘missile man’, but it was strongly opposed by some parties of UPA because they feared that he might use his missiles to force them to take right decisions, as he did earlier. Next, the major party of UPA put forward the name of a well-established industrialist. It was agreeable to many parties, but the female leader cum ‘common man’ of TNC [Taking No Commands] refused straight away. ‘Didi’ said that the industrialist once wore a ‘Red’ shirt in a party and hence he was a ‘Maoist’!
After this heated discussion, SP [Showbiz Party] voted for a political leader from ‘minority community’ (keeping in mind the minority votes), but it was opposed by NDA and by the female leader cum ‘Behenji’ of BSP [Building-only Structures Party]. ‘Behenji’ alleged the leader of once saying in public that he doesn’t like ‘Elephants’, and so his nomination was also cancelled. Following this some parties from the South-Indiana put forward the name of present Finance minister of UPA government, highlighting his vast political experience. To everyone’s surprise, this nomination was opposed by parties of UPA itself. They feared that the ‘Bhadrapurush’ would overshadow their ‘future prince’ and may even take some below the belt decisions.
In between all the chaos, some ‘Linguistic’ parties of the west raised their objections that they will support only their lingual ‘Maanush’ and will not allow any ‘Bhaiya’ to succeed in nominations. Despite the air-conditioner, the temperature of the hall increased and different arguing pairs were omnipresent in the room. After arguing for hours, finally, it was settled that none of the nominations were worth selecting. The politicians were under the gun for selecting a nomination. A cloud of despair floated around the politicians which was a rare occasion.
At that precise moment, out of the blue, one party suggested that this time a common man should be nominated for president. When this suggestion met loud cries of protest, the leaders of that party put forward their theory. They explained that this would not only make the public ecstatic, but the public would even forget about the recent faux-pass of the government. Moreover, because of his total inexperience of political tactics, the man will be a mere puppet of the government, just like the present president. He would be happy to act as rubber-stamp and visit the international embassies.
Thus, the decision was made with a majority of votes, (excluding some NDA parties), and a bourgeois working man was selected by the HR [Humanity Repugnant] department of the government.
After some weeks, the common man was invited to the exclusive farmhouse of the ruling party, where most of the leaders of different parties were present. The man was full of hopes and he dallied with the illusion of causing a change and working for the welfare of the country. When he reached there, he saw drunken leaders loitering around lewdly with some women. He was received by certain leaders of the parties. While going inside, one leader told him that in politics one must know which side one’s bread is buttered on. Another leader added that one must be shrewd enough to feign innocence in each and every situation.
Inside he saw a strange wagon. To the large cart was harnessed a small and feeble mare. Many intoxicated party members began to clamber into the wagon amidst laughter and jests. The leader standing with him saw his bamboozled look and explained to him, “The mare signifies the Republic of Indiana cum the ‘Mother Indiana’. The politicians ride on the mare mercilessly and make her to gallop. The more she gallops, the more we earn. We have no interest in her well being and development.” At that moment, he saw some members beat the mare with the whips. The mare moved some inches, but couldn’t take that much load. She snorted and winced under the constant blows from the whips. Agitated, the people struck her on ribs and even on the eyes to make her gallop, but to no avail. One member, being too irritated, took a hatchet and hit the mare 2-3 heavy blows with it. The mare sank to the ground, all four legs giving way at once. She groaned heavily and expired.
The leader then told to him that, “This is what we do to the people when they are no longer useful to us or when they turn against us. We have invited you here so you could know that you will serve just as our puppet. Any nasty step and you would suffer the same fate as this mare. Welcome to the real politics.”
The man was covered with perspiration and vomited. Next day, the newspapers bore the headlines about the sudden disappearance of the president nominee just one week before the consecration ceremony.
The politics made the common man gallop a long way.