Advantage Dynasty

     The plain and simple tea seller's profession is the current fascination in our (Indian)  political circles. 

     Mani Shankar Aiyar scored a self goal in 2014 when he patronisngly offered to allow the then PM candidate to sell tea during his party’s next meeting. It was almost like the elitist ex-Stephenian, unable to accept the success of a man of modest origins, was suggesting, how dare a tea seller set the bar so high for himself when such ranks or titles are the birthright of a chosen few of Lutyens’ Delhi ? After all he hadn’t been to The Doon school, St.Stephen’s or the Trinity Hall, Cambridge like Mr. Aiyar and his upper crust buddies did.

     Three years later, the grand old party did an encore and shot itself in the foot by insinuating in a meme, that their bugbear is better off selling tea. Have they unwittingly played into the hands of their rivals who love to whoop it up and turn such insults to their advantage?

     Dynasties in India feel a sense of entitlement to the corridors of power and treat their boroughs as personal fiefdoms. The Nehru-Gandhi gharana hands over reins to the successive generations, as a matter of inheritance. The heirs and their extended families accept the transfer of power as an established convention and willingly carry forward the legacy. 

     While the dynasts rule and dole out largesse to the sycophants as a reward for loyalty, the lesser mortals have a snowball's chance in hell, of winning a leadership battle. In a dynasty, the race for the coveted top job is a no-contest with no rules and no minimum score required to win. 

     That the Lutyens’ glass ceiling has finally been breached by a man of humble beginnings, spells doom for the exclusive club that has set the benchmark for seven decades, in the art of political flair and social finesse. In these privileged circles, it is considered an offence to be unsophisticated, and a sin to work hard and rise to the top. 

      Is the old order changing, to make way for the new? Only time will tell! 

     "If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies". India waits as the butterfly takes wing. 

Latha Raghuram



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