(This is a work of fiction)
Both Modi and Rahul were waiting at the VIP lounge of the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi. There jets had developed technical snags and were being repaired.
“So?” said Modi, trying to start a conversation. “I hear you are trying to follow my footsteps.”
“Yes. I heard you don’t want to have any kids.”
“Yes. But I also don’t want to get married,” said Rahul, trying to clarify his point.
“Isn’t that the same thing?” asked Modi.
“I hear Narendra bhai you were married once,” said Rahul, trying to give chabhi to Modi.
“Mind your own business,” replied a very irritated Modi.
“Come on Narendra bhai we all know you immediately corrected your mistake,” said Rahul, trying to mollify Modi.
“Yes I did,” replied Modi. “But these women can drive you really crazy.”
“You must be talking from your ‘brief’ experience. My Spanish girl friend used to talk non-stop. Kept calling me Raul instead of Rahul. ”
“Yeah. She used to really role her tongue while calling me Rauuuuuuuuul. And she thought I knew Spanish.”
“But don’t you?” asked Modi.
“Nah. I know Italian.”
“Isn’t that the same thing?”
“It’s as different as Marathi is from Gujarati,” explained Rahul. “And dhokla is from puran poli.”
“That’s news to me,” said Modi.
“Yes. And I got into some major trouble with my pretending.”
“Acha. What happened?”
“Me and Veronique, my girlfriend, were on holiday in Spain. She was talking non-stop and while talking she handed me a red trouser.”
“Red trouser?” asked Modi. “Not Saffron? Isn’t that a better colour.”
“Oh. But I am more left than right na,” said Rahul. “Plus given my one fourth Kashmiri Pandit genes, red suits me.”
“Acha. So what happened?”
“So she gave me the trouser. And I thought her non stop banter was about wearing it.”
“And you wore it?” asked Modi.
“ I wore it thinking this must be some Spanish tradition. We were supposed to visit her parents later in the day,” said Rahul.
“So what happened then?” asked Modi.
“Well turned out that before visiting her parents we were supposed to go to a bull-fight, where I was the matador for the day.”
“I ran all the way to the airport with the bulls after me. And I haven’t seen her since then.”
“Now that was some story.”
“Yes. One of my friends tried to set me up with an Afghani girl. I gave up on the idea as soon as I found out that the national game of Afghanistan is Buzkashi.”
“Next time you should date a Gujju girl. Worse come worse she will make you fly kites on Makar Sankranti and make you eat dhoklo, theplo, khakro and undiyo,” said Modi, trying to feign some sympathy for his rival.
“And I can shout Kai Po Che,” said Rahul, rather excitedly. “Once I cut your kite.”
“If you want I could even look for a good Gujarati girl for you,” offered Modi, ignoring Rahul’s remark.
“Could you?” asked Rahul.
“Yes, why not!”
“But there is a slight problem with that?”
“What? Madam won’t like it?” asked Modi. “Don’t worry I will talk to her.”
“No. No. Ma to is okay as long as I marry a girl.”
“Well, I can’t call my girlfriend ben no.”
“Don’t make fun of Gujaratis. Ye achi baat nahi hai,” said Modi, trying to get into a Vajpayee mould.
“Narendra bhai. Poor joke che!”
“But its nice you are following my footsteps,” said Modi, trying to reclaim some ground.
“Why only you? There are so many others like you,” said Rahul.
“Like?” asked Modi.
“Like Jayalalithaa in Tamil Nadu. Mamata in West Bengal. Mayawati in Uttar Pradesh. Pappu in Orissa.”
“Oh, sorry. I mean Naveen Patnaik. Pappu is his nickname. Everybody in the Delhi party circuit used to call him that.”
“No. But I am different from all of them. I am NaMo. The Narendra Modi,” screamed Narendra Modi. “If I had the 3D presentation on like I had during the Gujarat elections, there would even be a Halo over my head right now and a Sudarshan Chakra in my index finger.”
“Calm down Modi saab. We are all the same. We want power so much that we are not ready to even share it with our children,” said Rahul, blurting out the truth.
(This is a work of fiction)
(Vivek Kaul is a writer. He tweets @kaul_vivek)