The US First Lady has lately been
electrocuting electrifying audiences all around the globe with her assuredly random dance moves.
It is widely believed that Michelle Obama’s laudable efforts have single-leggedly heralded peace in Afghanistan, eradicated insurgency in Iraq, promoted human rights in Pakistan, arrested fiscal collapse in Europe, popularized safe sex in Africa and checked mad-cow disease from spreading globally, not to speak of boosting President Obama’s chances of outstripping his rivals in this year’s US presidential elections.
In such brilliant exposition of stately skills, Mrs. Obama is certainly not alone. Closer home, the Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj recently demonstrated her astute saltatory abilities, and by extension, her unquestionable supremacy over Nitin Gadkari in terms of physical portability, by twirling away at Rajghat to the tune of ‘Mere Desh Ki Dirty Politics….’ etc. etc. Which brings us to the all important question – should dancing be made a compulsory activity for Prime Ministers and Presidents in absolute national interest?
I attribute India’s dismal show at every conceivable front nowadays to the pathetic inability of successive Prime Ministers to perform. Perform with their feet, that is. When was the last time you saw an Indian PM trot with the tribals of Nagaland or jive with the Jarawas of Andamans? Such indifference towards the art is cultural insensitivity at the worst. The Jarawas would never have had to cavort before cunning western tourists had the government arranged for an exhaustive rendition of their art forms with the Prime Minister himself demonstrating the finer nuances of ancient Jarawa choreography.
Unfortunately, our Prime Ministers have lost the plot time and again and squandered golden opportunities to showcase India, if not as a gambling destination, then at least as a great gamboling destination. VP Singh, Indra Kumar Gujral, Chandrashekhar, HD Deve Gowda and PV Narsimha Rao, all erstwhile prime ministers, were never acknowledged as legitimate dancers. It’s entirely a different matter that we got to witness intensely emotional ‘dunce-dramas’ every now and then during their tenure. Poor Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the iconic leader of the masses, gave dancing a careful slip as he just could not lift his feet off the ground. His able successor, prime minister Manmohan Singh, was left dreadfully confused throughout his first tenure by two left feet, one his own, and the other being that of a wily Left prodigy called Prakash Karat. In his next tenure however, the respected statesman ominously developed what is widely perceived to be feet of clay, engineered by the artful compulsions of coalition politics. That, and the cardiac odd-job have effectively put paid to the chances of ever seeing Manmohan Singh shaking a leg or two in the days that remain of his present incumbency.
Think of it, just a minute or two of lively feet tapping by an Indian PM with the happy and plump tribeswomen of Arunachal Pradesh would not only have demonstrated our steely resolve to make the Chinese pee in their pants, it would also have silenced those silly international watchdogs who constantly niggle about petty advocacy issues concerning the North-East. The black money riddle could have been solved in a jiffy if any Indian PM had the spunk to break out in a sudden flash dance in front of one of the shady Swiss banks. And what could have been a better way to settle Indi-Pak differences once and for all than by having the two PMs dance together to A R Rahman’s free music at the Wagha Border? Alas, Pakistani PMs dance only to their Army’s tunes.
But then, that’s life. And we, the people, are the Jarawas.