New Delhi. Rahul Gandhi, the young and dynamic General Secretary of Congress, has decided to throw shoes at various Chief Ministers of India so that he could better understand the problems and grievances of the common man. Rahul has decided that he would make surprise visits and shock appearances at various functions and rallies of random Chief Ministers and fling shoes at them after spotting the best opportunity to do so.
“I can’t tell you who would be my first target! In fact I can’t tell you any details; it defeats the purpose.” said Rahul with a smile, when media-persons asked details of his latest plan of helping the common man by mixing with them in the most unassuming manner.
Earlier, to understand the problems of the common man, Rahul Gandhi had stayed overnight at dalit homes all over India, traveled by Delhi Metro and Mumbai Local, visited families of protesting farmers in Uttar Pradesh, and is slated to visit Vedanta mining site in Orissa this Thursday.
The decision to throw shoes was taken after Chief Ministers of Haryana and Jammu & Kashmir had to face such activity in the last couple of weeks. Rahul was reportedly very moved with those images and decided to get to the sole of the problem.
Not surprisingly, the decision has snowballed into a major political controversy.
Main opposition party BJP has criticized the decision and has questioned Rahul Gandhi’s wisdom behind taking such a step. “What next? Will he join the Kashmiri protestors and throw stones at security forces?” a party leader asked.
The party suspects that Rahul would selectively target Chief Ministers of the opposition parties for his latest campaign, but warned the Congress leader against taking such a step.
“Each action has an equal and opposite reaction.” reminded BJP leader and Chief Minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi.
The possible reaction hinted by Modi was detailed out by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati, who clarified that if the shoe hit her, she’d waste no time in throwing back her silver sandals at Rahul with maximum velocity and ferocity.
It should be noted that earlier incidents of shoe throwing at politicians in India and abroad had mostly resulted in missed targets, but experts believe that Rahul Gandhi can’t risk missing the target.
“His political opponents would cite it as an example of his failure and shortcoming.” pointed out a political analyst during a television debate to speculate various aspects of Rahul’s proposed shoe-throwing.
Mani Shankar Aiyar, who is usually unhappy with everything else around, was all praise for Rahul Gandhi’s decision during the debate, and suggested that Rahul should also try throwing shoes at Cabinet Ministers and people like Suresh Kalmadi.
“Or he could throw shoes at Chief Ministers of the North Eastern states; at least people and media would realize that they exist.” Mani added and argued that Rahul Gandhi’s shoes could unify the whole India.
Other Congress leaders too have welcomed Rahul Gandhi’s decision and have offered their own Chief Ministers as target if the opposition parties were unwilling to cooperate.
“I am going to meet Vilasrao Ji and ask him to invite Rahul Baba for throwing shoes at him.” said Ramesh Bagwe, Minister of State for Home in Maharashtra, who had earlier lifted Rahul Gandhi’s slippers (chappals) when he traveled by Mumbai local in February this year.
(based on vital inputs by special correspondent Chetan)