Log Out

Advertisement

Chemistry lesson: The bond between Modi and Shah

Modi loves to talk about his life outside politics, but Shah is cut from a different cloth

By The Telegraph

  • Published 21.09.19, 10:39 PM
  • Updated 21.09.19, 10:39 PM
Within the Bharatiya Janata Party, everyone acknowledges the fact that nobody understands Modiji better than Amitbhai and that Modiji trusts none like he does Amitbhai.
Within the Bharatiya Janata Party, everyone acknowledges the fact that nobody understands Modiji better than Amitbhai and that Modiji trusts none like he does Amitbhai. Telegraph file photo

It is the chemistry stupid! Not even ardent critics of the prime minister, Narendra Modi, and the home minister, Amit Shah, can deny that the chemistry between the two leaders is almost perfect. Within the Bharatiya Janata Party, everyone acknowledges the fact that nobody understands Modiji better than Amitbhai and that Modiji trusts none like he does Amitbhai. The duo of Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Lal Krishna Advani, again as PM and HM, were famous in the two previous National Democratic Alliance governments between 1998 and 2004 but it appears that the Modi-Shah jodi has surpassed the Atal-Advani pair and has acquired a rather special tag. The two have a lot of similarities: both men have the ability to be 24x7 politicians and shock their rivals with bold decisions.

But what is seldom talked about in the corridors of power is that Modi and Shah are also different people in a way. Modi loves to talk about his life outside politics. He, for example, gave an out-of-the-box interview to the film-star, Akshay Kumar. But Shah is cut from a different cloth. He bluntly refuses questions about his personal life. “My personal life is mine. I don’t like to talk about my personal life because it has got nothing to do with the people,” Shah told an interviewer recently when asked whether he loved films. This, however, doesn’t mean there is nothing personal about Shah. Like Modi, he too loves getting photographed and expects it to be a perfect shot. Many in the BJP feel that Shah is holding back his tales outside politics for a later day. Do they mean the day when Shah succeeds Modi?

The external affairs minister, S. Jaishankar, appears to have completed his rite of passage, from India’s top diplomat to a politician, only last week even though he had formally joined the BJP within a month of being sworn in.
The external affairs minister, S. Jaishankar, appears to have completed his rite of passage, from India’s top diplomat to a politician, only last week even though he had formally joined the BJP within a month of being sworn in. Telegraph file photo

New image

The external affairs minister, S. Jaishankar, appears to have completed his rite of passage, from India’s top diplomat to a politician, only last week even though he had formally joined the BJP within a month of being sworn in. The first signs of this transition came in with a tweet of himself at the Statue of Unity. “At Vishwa Van, below the Statue of Unity. A Foreign Minister marvels at how the world has been brought to India.”

The only problem was that the map the foreign minister was seen admiring was far from perfect. There was no sign of North America on it. Australia was projected upside down. Perhaps there is a reason why wise men say that a picture speaks a thousand words.

That was not all. Later, during his first press conference, Jaishankar sang paeans to the leadership of qualities of Narendra Modi time and again. This, as is often the case, resulted in furtive glances being exchanged among those who were present.

Should Amitbhai, Modi’s successor according to the grapevine within the BJP, too keep looking over his shoulder?

Careful whispers

HD Deve Gowda might want to go alone for the bypolls in Karnataka. But Congress sources say that Gowda gave tips to the party’s troubleshooter, DK Shivakumar, who is in Tihar jail after being arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in a money laundering case. The bonhomie between the two Vokkaliga leaders have sent shivers down the spine of the Congress since it cannot afford to lose Shivakumar, a party heavyweight, who cannot be replaced easily. Coming at a time when Shivakumar loyalists are accusing PC Siddaramaiah of not doing enough to help the ace troubleshooter, the last thing the party would want is to be seen as anti-Vokkaliga ahead of the by-elections.

Sweet and sour

A Twitter prank played by the right-wing author, Anand Ranganathan, claiming that the Centre was looking into Tamil Nadu’s demand for a GI tag on Mysorepak set pro-Kannada activists fuming. Vatal Nagaraj, an activist, even took out a procession in Mysore, the city the sweet is named after. Commuters in Mysore’s bus stops and railway station were served high-quality Mysorepak before Ranganathan clarified that it was all a joke.

Would Mr Ranganathan crack more such jokes? They can sweeten the taste of these bitter times.

Images of Didi’s phenomenal feats of walking, with ministers and bodyguards huffing and puffing behind her, are not that rare.
Images of Didi’s phenomenal feats of walking, with ministers and bodyguards huffing and puffing behind her, are not that rare. Telegraph file photo

Footnote

The PM has assured the nation that ‘Fit India’ would keep one and all healthy. One of India’s fittest leaders happens to be Mamata Banerjee. Images of Didi’s phenomenal feats of walking, with ministers and bodyguards huffing and puffing behind her, are not that rare. Didi, supporters of the Trinamul Congress are confident, would be miles ahead of her rivals in the BJP in this race.

Advertisement