01 November, 2020

Hold Back The Waves

Across the nation, her abdication has even cynics rooting for Soni

Hold Back The Waves
The foreigner's become the 'Devi'? Has one "inner voice" alchemised the 'power-hungry' Madam of 10, Janpath into an all-renouncing saint?

So what if Sonia Gandhi's detractors—sadhvis and swadeshi bahus alike—are claiming the credit for her decision not to be the next PM? And so what if her worst critics are maliciously calling her decision a clever manipulative trick, a political masterstroke no one expected? The Opposition has five years to dwell on it.

Meanwhile, the people of India seem to have melted. Those who misjudged Sonia as a woman lusting after political power are suddenly contrite. Many of the people Outlook spoke to suddenly see her in a different light. "Sonia's proved to be above everyone else. After her sacrifice, it will be difficult for the BJP to come back to power for the next 10 years," says Sailesh Gupta, a grocery store owner in south Delhi. Incidentally, he had voted BJP.

So the foreign origin vitriol appears to have rebounded. "It's a supreme sacrifice," says Malayalam poet Sugatha Kumari. "She's earned our respect as one of...



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