Image Courtesy: timesofindia
Arvind Kejriwal and Lalu Prasad Yadav hugging each other at the swearing-in ceremony of Nitish Kumar in Patna has grabbed eyeballs, and deservedly so. For a political leader who came to power on a non-corruption plank, hugging a leader like Lalu, with a history of corruption and conviction in a fodder scame case, was not just visually odd but is also being seen by many as a betrayal of the people’s trust. Kejriwal has also been accused of ‘finally becoming a true politician’.
‘Politics makes strange bedfellows’, goes an old saying.
Kejriwal’s supporters have countered these charges with mainly two points. First, that Lalu hugged him forcibly, and that Kejriwal was only trying to show common courtesy. Second, that even Narendra Modi had shaken hands with Lalu recently, and hence this event should not be blown out of proportion.
The Logical Indian feels that this is not just about common courtesy. Yes, politicians should be well behaved with each other and hugging and shaking hands is not a bad thing. However, we feel that Kejriwal, being a self-styled mascot of honest politics, should have been careful not to be seen in alignment with a convicted politician. Even if courtesy demanded that he attend the ceremony, there was no reason to be seen in a celebratory pose with someone whose kind of politics Kejriwal always stood against.
We are also surprised that Kejriwal did not raise his voice against a 9th class fail politician who became Deputy Chief Minister of a large state with no real credentials or experience. We remember the same Kejriwal speaking out on the controversy surrounding Smriti Irani’s degree.
We sincerely hope that our politicians stop being opportunists and learn to become a little more consistent.