Red Alert: BJP’s BFF Vikas is AWOL


Red Alert: BJP’s BFF Vikas is AWOL

Illustration: Sushant Ahire/Arré

It is polling day in Gujarat. A dusty December afternoon, after all that mud-slinging last month. A doorbell rings. “Uncle, can Vikas come out to play?” “Vikas? Beta, he doesn’t stay here anymore,” says an unknown man. He’s rather rude and arrogant, a far cry from the sweet, hopeful Vikas whom everyone adored.

Some say he went crazy. Some say he went missing. He contemplated filing for defamation for the former accusation. But figured it was easier to opt for the latter. He went AWOL. Dropped off. Poof. Almost like Ranchoddas Chanchad from 3 Idiots.

But if you think hard, it now seems as if Vikas was also at fault. He has been pretty ambiguous since he first came into the limelight in 2014. Now the question raised by those looking for him is which Vikas? Was he an Acharya? Or an Agarwal? Or was he a Shah? Or Patel? Or an Ahuja? Or Jain? Or a Thakur? Or a Khan. LOL. Actually, no. Vikas can’t be a Khan.

The trouble with Vikas was he was always a petulant child, always difficult to come around. He was stubborn and he actually made you work. He needed investments. He needed some rules to change. He needed people to change. He needed new ideas. He didn’t care about the past. He didn’t care who held their nose when it stank. He didn’t care who met whom. He didn’t care who is neech or who is oonch.

Actually, he doesn’t even think of neechla except if it is a floor in a highrise. That’s the thing, he wants buildings, he wants lifts, he wants roads to get to those buildings, he wants parks, he wants air to be clean, he wanted a job (crossed a line there), he wanted to keep some of the money he earned, instead of letting it all go to taxes. He was too idealistic and created too much inconvenience, basically. Clearly doesn’t sound like someone who you should befriend.

He was a needy chap. He needed people to spend on him. He needed people to believe in him. Oh! So demanding. He just kept asking for money. He just couldn’t do anything himself. But he promised to do things for people.

Vikas? Well, he was for everyone. And that’s just not on.

And the people? They weren’t listening until he told them a secret: That their success depends on their surname. And you don’t have to work for it. Your surname is an ovarian lottery that you win (or lose). It’s a ticket that lasts you forever, cash-able every step of  the way and especially every five years. Because hey, largest democracy. And then you use it all your life. It’s convenient. It works. It’s like a lottery that can get you things – it brings you generations of privilege, aeons of superiority, centuries of domination. Sometimes, it also gets you admissions, it gets you freebies, it gets you reserved seats, it gets you subsidies, it gives you a gas cylinder, it gives you a loan, and god knows what else. Depending on where you stay, of course.

Vikas? Well, he was for everyone. And that’s just not on. How can everyone be same? How can everyone be equal? Where’s the fun then? How will we know where to live? How will we know who to hang out with? If Vikas chose to go with someone in particular, we’d still listen. But to quote the great Aristotle “A friend of everyone is a friend of no one.” So be it.

Vikas ain’t giving you anything right away. No, sir. He is going to make you work. Get up every morning, go to school and then to office and then work, clock the hours, get the salaries – with Vikas, it’s all work, work, work. There are no free lunches.

So, it is obvious Vikas isn’t going to come out to play for some time now. We’ve dumped him. And we’ll be poorer for it.