‘Arun Shourie: autocratic, time-server, climber’

After exercising the limited IQ of his partymen with his mixed metaphors (kati patang, Alice in Blunderland, Humpty Dumpty, great pygmisation, Tarzan) for a few days, Arun Shourie‘s interview with Shekhar Gupta on NDTV’s Walk the Talk programme, has slipped off the media radar.

Yet, the most significant part of that powwow was not the name-calling but Shourie’s call that the RSS take control of the crisis-ridden BJP. In the latest issue of Tehelka, Shoma Chaudhury tracks Shourie’s “adumbral position between liberal knight, self-righteous crusader and unselfconscious fascist”.

Prabhash Joshi, the former editor of Jansatta, the Hindi newspaper of the Indian Express group, offer this crisp analysis of his Magsaysay Award winning peer’s use of a butcher’s terminology—jhatka versus halal—to haul it out of the coals:

“His suggestion to the RSS betrays the quintessential Shourie. He wants a democratic political party like the BJP to be chained lock, stock and barrel by an organisation that calls itself “cultural” and does not believe in parliamentary democracy or the Indian Constitution. And he wants this democratic party to be taken over by jhatka (sudden death).

“Who would want such a thing? Only an autocratic, dictatorial mind.

“Arun Shourie is a time-server and climber who wants to dictate whatever he considers intellectually superior into the democratic polity of this country. Any man who does not believe in democracy and is in politics is a very dangerous animal. Be very afraid of him.”

Photograph: Outlook

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