By Gyan Prakash
Highly publicized as the biggest political interview of 2014, it was expected that Rahul had readied himself for the occasion and would come out with all guns blazing. Else, why would he choose Arnab Goswami, the most celebrated vigilante of Indian media, to succumb to! Perhaps, coverage may have been one of his concerns with other journalists but then, wasn’t he himself an over-priced entity that would lure audience to him (wittingly or unwittingly)?
Right from the very beginning, the interview had two incoherent phases, one bore by the interviewer and the other imbibed by the interviewee. The questions weren’t blunt but they weren’t harsh either, thanks to Arnab who gave him enough respect than perhaps, he has ever given to anyone else on Times Now. There was a point when Gandhi scion was asked, “Don’t you think that if you had spoken on these issues earlier, perhaps today we would not be in a situation where India would not be a preferred investment destination?” And Gandhi replied, “Actually…”, and then after a considerably long time gap, he resumed, “The RTI has basically changed the game in India. What it has done is that it has opened up the structures.” Even a noob would understand that the question had something to do with the Indian economy.
After going through the conversation, one can easily recall the keywords which Rahul had toiled hard last night to get into his system – empowerment, women, youth, power, change, corruption. Believe or not, these words were repeated at least 50 times each, giving an impression of his shallow understanding of Indian democracy. Although the questions and the answers were largely unrelated, it was a nail biting contest. A contest in which Rahul had to accommodate all that he wanted to say in a time constrained set up irrespective of a strict interviewer who almost never failed to question the specificity of his responses.
When Arnab thanked Rahul at the end, saying “Thank you very much for talking to me and taking specific questions for me on Frankly Speaking”, there was clear a sense of ambiguity as to whether it was a sarcastic remark or a genuine vote of gratitude. Thus, ended the first ever TV interview of Nehru’s great grandson, Gandhi.
Laced with a severe lack of communications skills, unable to throw points on the table and finding vigor only while speaking about the Gandhi family, Rahul has embarrassed his followers, provided they take him at face value based on his performance. For now, we are not even talking about his contestation for the top post, it’s just an interview where he apparently, let his party down. Now, it is for the people to judge whether they can trust such an individual with this country or not because his family credentials are enough to bag him the job (even though he may deny so), given the UPA has the last laugh in Lok Sabha elections this year, something that he seems to be unconfidently confident of.
An entrepreneur at heart, a visionary of an ideal society and passionate about his ideas, Gyan Prakash believes that a radical transformation in the society can be brought about by only those who have the courage to come out of their comfort zone and voice the concern of the indigent, i.e., today’s youth. He ascertains that education, as a tool will play a pivotal role in such a paradigm shift. He has special interest in marketing and has been actively involved in such stints ever since he joined IIT Kharagpur as a student in 2010. Apart from mainstream activities, he is a social activist & loves reading. Drop a mail to start a conversation with him at [email protected]