E.R. RAMACHANDRAN writes: The difference between the ‘Haves’ and ‘Havenots’ has been well chronicled by sociologists and historians since time immemorial. While, the former has abundance of everything, it is the lack of it that makes up the latter.
The ‘havenots’ not only have to put up with the obvious lack of whatever the ‘Haves’ have, more often they are subjected to their eccentricities which keep them on tenterhooks. Curiously, even the ‘Havenots’ almost end up, as their counterparts. This is more so in the political field.
I have had a chance to experience this first hand over the last few months.
I was in Akkithimmana Halli around 3’0 clock early one morning when our Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy walked in for his late dinner or early breakfast. I asked him in my sleepy voice, whether he was transferring the CM’s post to his deputy, come October 3rd.
“One hundred per cent,” he said, and continued, “I would have raised the figure if I was better at arithmetic. I am like Bharatha, pleading with his elder brother Shri Rama to takeover. I am not the one who will go back on my word. You have heard of Punyakoti… Kotta maathannu thappalarenu. That’s me. It’s time for me to eat… Is it dinner or breakfast?” he enquired with the host.
The Chief Minister immediately hit the sack as he had a pre-sunrise meeting at 4.30 with the village folk.
My next encounter with HDK was at the house of a village postmaster at 12.30 at night. He was getting ready for a cup of tea with kodubale and kobbari mithayi. I again broached the subject of his handing over the power to Mr. Yedi.
“You asked this a month back, I remember. I would call it an open question which should have been asked at the Open University. My answer is same as what I answered at Karnataka State Open University. There is no easy solution. I will resign right now, if farmers continue to commit suicide. My heart bleeds for farmers and temporary workers of KSOU. There are far more important questions in life than a mere transfer of power. I think it is even irrelevant. Now, if you will excuse me. Let me have my evening tea.”
The third time was when he came to offer the bagina at KRS dam. When he saw me approaching him, he said: “You want to know whether I will hand over power to Yediyurappa on October 3, right? The answer is, ‘I don’t know’. I am more like Arjuna in Kurukshetra looking for Krishna’s advice. My father is my Krishna…
“I am also reading Hamlet these days. The “should I” or “should I not” thought is driving me mad. Anything can happen in politics, especially in Karnataka. This is the experience of all politicians including my father who went to Delhi as a Dharmaraja where he met his Shakuni in Sitaram Kesari. I am not sure what I will do.”
Meanwhile, the deputy CM’s life is much the same for the last three months, whether at office, at home, the guest house, or travellers’ bungalow. He sits in front of a calendar, already showing October, counting endless beads like a devout Hindu, Muslim or a Christian all rolled into one. He looks more like Vishwamitra, afraid to open his eyes, lest a Menaka upset his tapas, as he counts the beads and mutters ‘October 3rd’, October 3rd….”
Even when CM asked him to join him for the visit to KRS to give bagina, it seems, he just asked the date and when he was told it was ‘July 23rd’, continued muttering ‘ October 3rd’ with a blank expression. The C.M. is going nuts about the date as also with the health of his Deputy. Finally that may decide what will really happen on October 3rd.