Lal Krishna Advani
Advani served as deputy prime minister for India but served as home minister for Indian government. The NDA government was the first non-congress government to complete full five year term in our country. In many ways this was considered a great achievement for a non-congress government. However, the journey till here was no less than a roller-coaster ride! BJP only had two seats in lok sabha before 1989. It was then Advani took up the now infamous 'Rath Yatra' and indirectly guided BJP to 88 seats in the general elections. He might have provoked people using 'religion' but it was Indians who voted for him! However it was congress government (which claims itself to be a secular force) that opened the doors of the controversial ayodhya site and let people perform hindu rituals. Karsevaks demolished Babri Masjid on 6th december, 1992. This triggered a major support for Advani and BJP's hindutva in north India that eventually lead to BJP's victory in next general elections (1996). Advani led the anti-government agitation (against corruption and new found fan base across India). Vajpayee (who's considered a leader of masses himself) became prime minister thrice over next 8 years. However, in 2004 BJP-led NDA government dramatically lost the general elections. His career is marred by quite a few controversies:
- now infamous rath yatra
- accused of delivering hate speeches for babri demolition
- jain-hawala scam
- the latest being the infamous jinnah remark!
He is controversy's best child in Indian politics. Often we see him in news for the wrong reasons. If it is his remark on sonia gandhi one day, it would be rejection of US visa the next day. These days Modi sings Gujrat's development tunes everywhere. He talks with Tata for breakfast and Anil Ambani for lunch. What was he before speaking of Gujrat's development? He sworn in as Chief Minister of Gujrat in 2001 and is longest serving CM of the state till date ( he is current CM). It was in 2002 his government's reluctance to tackle godhra riots head-on resulted in public outrage across the country. He created a stir when he walked out of an interview with Karan Thapar on Devil's Advocate! Sonia Gandhi famously labelled him as 'merchant of death'. Contrary to all expectations, he won with a thumping majority in previous assembly elections!!
Laloo Prasad Yadav
Is there any child who hasn't heard about him? Well, there must be handful! :)) He's the most charismatic leaders I observed in Indian politics. He's seen on television at least twice a week! Now, that's what I call PR skills. That is why every Indian must've heard of him. This is the same reason why reliance is more visible than Tata (in terms of marketing). His stint with Indian railways must be the most popular one with people. He is credited for reversing the fortunes of Indian railways (that was supposedly in huge losses). Today, he holds the UPA government together. It is only because of him that congress and left parties allied for national 'benefits'. He doesn't shy away from stating his prime ministerial dreams every few months. However, we do not forget accusations on him as well:
- the infamous fodder scam
- disproportionate assets case
Raj Thackeray must've observed these politicians very well before launching a tirade against north Indians (especially from Bihar and UP). He was successful in getting good publicity in national media (our own news starved media). However, he was widely criticized for not standing by Bombay citizens after the recent terror attacks.
If a leader who supposedly organized masjid demolition can aspire to become prime minister, where is our country headed to? If a leader who was reluctant to act on riots aspires for a greater role in Indian politics some day, what does that indicate? If a budding politician takes a violent route to make an impact on people, what does that suggest?