13 April, 2021

Mrs Prime Minister

Dignity in a high place, personified by a quiet, assertive sardarni

Mrs Prime Minister
It is rare in Indian social and political life to find persons who have risen from obscurity to pre-eminence but have not fallen victim to self-importance, arrogance, hubris. If not them, it is members of their family who flaunt their close relationship to the achiever of eminence, to enhance their own status. The one exception I have run into is our prime minister, Manmohan Singh, his wife Gursharan Kaur, their brothers and sisters, and their three daughters. It is not surprising that most people do not even know who the prime minister's and his wife's relations are, and what they do to earn their livelihood.

Despite being on nodding terms with Manmohan Singh for almost 15 years, I knew very little about his background and not even his wife's name till after he became prime minister of India. All I knew about her was indirectly through my grand-daughter Naina Dayal, then studying in St Stephen's College. She was very taken up by her history professor, Dr Upinder Kaur, married to a fellow professor of philosophy, Vijay Tankha. Upinder Kaur...

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