Question: “The nation wants to know what your book is all about?”
Answer: “With that line, I think you’ve got the wrong person.”
Rajdeep Sardesai launched his book 2014: The Election that Changed India on 1st November 2014. In a conversation with the socialite-author Shobhaa De for DNA, Rajdeep Sardesai had given such answers around discussions on politics and journalism, that you would be left in amaze and shock at the same time. Hard to believe? Well, you just read how their conversation started! Read on!
“Priyanka Gandhi does politics like an item girl”, Rajdeep Sardesai said. Now it would be interesting to note how his wife, Sagarika Ghose, who is a journalist, anchor and author, reacted on this on the micro-blogging site, Twitter.
Unacceptable to refer to Priyanka in terms of item number. @sardesairajdeep shd immediately retract it if he said so.
— Sagarika Ghose (@sagarikaghose) November 2, 2014
So yes, to inform her husband that it wasn’t the right thing to say and that he should retract, she took the matter on Twitter. Interesting, I would say. But you know what’s more interesting? Rajdeep Sardesai’s reply on the same.
@sagarikaghose was trying to make the pt politics is 24 x 7, can’t flit in and out.Realise choice of words should have been better. Retract.
— Rajdeep Sardesai (@sardesairajdeep) November 2, 2014
Wives are always right, aren’t they? Well, jokes apart, here are a few more shocking answers by him.
When asked if Priyanka can get Congress out of the mess it has gotten itself into, he said,“The Gandhis need to realise that people want a leader who engages 24×7. Modi has got that right from the beginning.” Is he getting converted into a Modi fan? No clue. But yes, after reading this, shocked I am, to the core!
He called it moronic that Rahul Gandhi agreed to give an interview to Arnab Goswami. “In all my meetings with him, whenever he said something which I felt was a good headline point, he would just ruin it by saying it was all off the record”, he said.
“Rahul Gandhi is great to go out for a drink with to Bombay Gymkhana, but he is not Prime Ministerial material. Sonia Gandhi is being this Italian mother with her son. She’s lost touch with reality.” He said, clearly meaning that this is something similar to those business families who want their sons to be the heirs.
Bashing away the claims that he was an acolyte to the Nehru-Gandhi family, he did admit that the media showed a lot of deference to them till now. “That’s all changed since 2011.”
Further, he said,“The kind of egalitarianism Manishankar Aiyar’s statement, calling Modi a chaiwallah, represents is precisely the reason why Congress needs to be disbanded.” Not only that, he went to the extent of saying “the Congress’s folly in believing that they will come back after five years. Unless they really work on rejuvenating the party, it seems very tough.”
“When Modi was going around promoting the Gujarat model, instead of questioning him on that, Congress began trying to compete (with him).” What he meant was that Congress’s incompetence was not the only reason for BJP’s win.
“Modi treats the media with contempt. He will just not answer any questions or hold press conferences and, when he granted the top editors a five-minute audience, what did they do? Instead of asking questions, they were busy clicking selfies,” Sardesai said.
He also admitted that the youth of the nation is very much excited and enthusiastic about Modi “as a swashbuckling Schwarzenegger who would solve all the problems.” He added that his son who’s studying at a medical college abroad wanted to come to India and vote for Modi.
When Shobhaa De asked him why that media which questions everything has gradually disappeared, he said,“I don’t think the average journalist doesn’t want to do good stories. It’s the editors at the behest of proprietors who aren’t letting them. I hope the availability of digital platforms will help sustain good journalism. I see very dark times ahead with a lot more control and muzzling of the mainstream media.”
“Sonia Gandhi got Ahmed Patel to call an industrialist and he agreed to send some money with his secretary. But, in between, the industrialist saw an exit poll, which predicted Congress would not even make it to a 100. He called his secretary back, saying he didn’t want to waste money.”
Yes, these are his views on the Gandhi family. Shocked or amazed? Let me know in the comments section below!