12 May, 2021

Master Ceremonialist

A PM who conquers foreign shores but loses the plot at home

Illustration by Saahil
Master Ceremonialist

There is something disturbingly strange about a prime minister of the world’s largest democracy failing to speak in his own country’s Parliament and then giving a chest-thumping speech outside Indian shores. By chest-thumping, I mean he thumps the table and puts his hands in the air while the faithful and nris thump their chests and get terribly excited on social media. They truly imagine that people are awe-struck and so they send intelligent and well-phrased tweets such as ‘burnol, burnol, burnol’ or ‘jealous, jealous, jealous’ (besides the usual swear words that Modi bhakts put out in battlefield internet).

But this piece is not about those who love Prime Minister Narendra Modi and because of that passion choose to spread some hate around.

It’s about how bizarre the Modi prime ministership is turning out to be. Consider his ‘Madison Square Garden moment’ at the Dubai cricket stadium where Modi addressed a huge gathering of Indians. The Indian PM himself tweeted: “Electrifying is an understatement to...

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