Thursday, April 16, 2009

Action in Parliament!

Celebrities have failed to create a formidable position in politics!

It is for everyone to observe that over the years the number of celebrities getting into mainstream politics has seen a steep rise. And if historically politics attracted cinema stars, over the past few years it has also been successful in attracting interest of sportsmen, particularly cricketers. Invariably in most cases, the most common rhetoric for joining mainstream politics is nothing but to serve the nation! But then past precedence with respect to nation serving as far as celebrity turned politicians are concerned, has been just the reverse. In fact in some cases their performance with respect to nation serving has been so poor that it has actually tarnished their previous successful image.

Interestingly, if one were to observe the trend, one would realise that none of the celebrities plunge into mainstream politics at the peak of their respective careers but towards the end of it. The issue is why is it that the realisation of serving the nation dawns upon most of them pretty late in their lives? Is it that their successful careers in cinema or sports have not been good enough in serving the nation? Or is it that the penchant for remaining a public figure is so high that joining politics becomes a compulsion and the last recourse? For, if the intention is to really serve the nation then why is it that it never gets reflected by their performances? Sadly, in most cases they are just reduced to misnomers, whose faces are the only real assets to be exploited by the political parties they represent. As per information available from various sources, the likes of Govinda, Vinod Khanna, Dharmendra, Jayaprada and Raj Babbar have an outstanding attendance record in the parliament. They have attended 12%, 46%, 24%, 43% and 52% of the sessions respectively. Their records are even better when it comes to participating in debates, which stands at 2, 5, 0, 27 and 7 respectively. It portrays a similar picture with respect to their contributions in moving bills which is 0, 0, 0, 3, and 0 respectively! And in all their quest to serve the nation, the number of questions they had put forth in the Parliament was 0, 4, 0, 269 and 5 respectively! All this clearly indicates that celebrities' joining of politics is mere tokenism and definitely not for serving the nation! And yet more and more celebrities are still joining politics. Further, in this election, we have names like former cricket captain Mohd. Azharuddin, comedian Raju Shrivastava, Shekhar Suman and Sanjay Dutt (not after the Supreme Court ruling) also plunging in the game of serving the nation.

Given the background, one can safely conclude that celebrities in India join politics just to encash their previous image and stretch their otherwise dwindling celebrity status for a longer period. That’s why most of them have failed to make a formidable position for themselves in politics. Except for very few celebrities down south like MGR, Jayalalitha, N T Rama Rao, none of them have been successful in making such positions. It happened in South India especially because film celebrities enjoy a demigod status there. And so the political performance of celebrities out there is never judged on merit but just for their being what they are. I’ve nothing against celebrities joining or anyone else joining politics but then what the Indian parliament today needs, are not entertainers but real leaders who would use their thought process not for resurrecting their dwindling public image, but for a bright future of India! It would still take quite some time till we can manage enough real candidates who can weed out the reel figures.


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