Eloquence was his strength, saffron continues to remain his pride. Narendra Modi was victorious in wooing the hearts of every business woman gathered at the FICCI Ladies organization meet the moment he addresses them as ‘beheno’, followed by his one-dimensional speech. Buoyancy governed his proclamation. The man is a sheer orator for the populace who’re oblivious to profound language, to the ones who appreciate his witticism. He engaged the seated with his humour at all times, and women just love humour. He claims himself digitized and encourages the modernized to connect with him via social networks. He strikes the right chord. But when all is said and done, there was a flaw and it was evident.
To begin with, Mr. Modi evokes the term ‘Maa’, expressing the eternal peace attained when one chants the word, its significance within every pure entity of our land, be it ‘Ganga Maa’, ‘Bharat Mata’ or ‘Gaai Mata’, a tradition we cherish, a culture we continue to retain. He verbalizes the tale with his deep-bass voice, which sounded similar to Amrish Puri narrating the Mahabharata, with every monotonous tone said in fluent depth and intensity, affecting everyone present. He professes that it is ‘women’ who must be the ones positioned on the golden throne but confesses with disappointment, “Back in the 18th century, the girl-child was at least bestowed with an opportunity to be born, she was given minutes to breathe, she was able to see the mother who gave life to her and finally, alas! she would be released into the dungeons of death. But today, in the 21st century, we kill the foetus itself. What other evidence do I need to prove that we’ve gone further back than the 18th century?”
Engulfing the thought inside me, with glitter in my eyes, I went ‘Waah!’ and ‘Uff!’ all the way with satire. Mr. Modi has mastered the art of public-speaking, mesmerizing the gathered with pitiful tales in the beginning as his eyes failed to spurt tears even though the audience triumphed in doing so; a perfect move of a professional strategist.
His stereotypical views gathered a justified applause. I, however, denied doing so. Mr. Modi seems to have viewed the problem from above, channelling us to a blurred pathway towards change, or in his way, “…samaaj meh badlaaw lana hoga!” It sounded easy but sceptically, it isn’t. The speech began to drag itself with more depressing stories. Women today are weary and tired listening about their agony. According to global polls, we’re the fourth most dangerous country for women. Mr. Modi, a solution is all they need. Faith is restored when a problem is always backed by solutions, a trick the upcoming candidates are yet unaware of.
The tale that followed was striking. The mystery was whether it was another piece of his witty humour or an impressive anecdote? If it was humour, then the audience was surely entertained; if it was an anecdote followed by a reason, it wasn’t noteworthy. And the tale goes: “A woman works her best to make sure chappatis are round. On doing so, if she burns her hand unintentionally, she would say ‘I have been burnt’ in order to grab her spouse’s attention. The same woman would rush in a crowded sale to buy saaris but leaves all her lavishness when her house is on fire and to her surprise, if she finds her child is inside the burning house, she will try her best to get the child out. This is the unblemished strength of a woman — the same woman, whose hands were burnt while she makes chappatis…” Mr. Modi is an illusionist; spontaneity is his expertise. The message was received, but the path was yet blurring. He now sensed that boredom filled the air and cracks his usual ‘4 P.M.’ joke which led the crowd outburst, the sign of an entertainer. Mr. Modi is an artist.
He begins to compare Ahmadabad’s ‘Jasuben Pizza’ to various other international pizza outlets, praises the chronicles of the ‘Lijjat Papad’ empowerment, women involved in revolutionizing the Amul Butter industry, etc. Where was this all going, remained a mystery; and this was the flaw.
Dialogue on an issue regarding ‘women empowerment’ is a grave one. Mr. Modi failed to perceive the crux of it all. The subject could have been professed with a practicality but naÃ¯ve philosophy and the wink-wink gossip tales faded the oblivion. Mr. Modi was unsuccessful in going beyond papads, rotis and pizzas and ‘ghar-ghar ki kahanis’. Inspiration exists beyond the divine land of Gujarat. The beauty behind the man was he had no intentional back-punch to Rahul Gandhi’s Speech at CII Summit. I waited for him to say, “Enough said, let’s get down to business!” Alas. Nevertheless, he surely wooed the women well and he indeed possesses great oratorical skills. He conquered the queens, it’s a checkmate.
Critics always need more, and we’re justified to ask for. Expectations rise higher, nerves twist and turn tenser. With the gentlemen beginning to speak out, who will conquer the throne? The answer to it lies in our hands.