HONOURING A WRONG PERSON
During Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav’s visit to Azamgarh – Lok Sabha constituency of his father Mulayam Singh Yadav – to honour war widows, party workers got a pretender to receive an award just to avoid ferrying the real recipient, 94-yearold Rasoolan Bibi from her village in Ghazipur to the venue. Rasoolan Bibi is the widow of Company Quartermaster Havildar Abdul Hamid, who fought gallantly in 1965 Indo- Pak war and received posthumously India’s highest military decoration the Param Vir Chakra for his actions (of destroying Pakistani Patton tanks with mere machine gun) during the war before succumbing to his injuries. Bibi and her family watched footage of the honour ceremony on television and brought it to light.
Interestingly, niether Bibi nor her family members recognise the recipient if she is a close or distant relative of theirs. But the pretender knowing fully well that she is not the deserving person received the honour. Samajwadi Party had lost Assembly elections this year and its scion Akhilesh is trying to boost his as well as his party’s image among the people through such goodwill gestures and sometimes seems to be acting like a parallel authority in the state. There is nothing wrong in honouring war veterans or their survivors for the sacrifices that they have made for the country. But such petty mistakes turn entire goodwill into farce.
Nothing but an eagerness to woo back the voters is to blame for such silly mistake. Samajwadi Party has been battling with internal dissension and conflict to capture the top leadership. These factors had caused party’s ouster from power. Party’s founder Mulayam Singh Yadav would be a spent force by the time next elections are held. Then, this battle will only intesify, as there are so many contestents from among the Yadav clan who are eyeing the top leadership. So, Akhilesh has to project a persona of future leader acceptable to all. As for the current farce, he is yet to get a convincing reason for the goof- up. He has to be more careful in future. Maintaining public contact is right, but such things can boomerang.