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On the losing side

The three men were stunned by the devastation on the electoral battlefield. The second battle for Delhi was tough and they found themselves on the losing side for the first time. The leader was angry. “I don’t understand how we lost,” he said. “We were supposed to change Delhi into a smart city. Wasn’t that good enough for the people?” He paused for a while and asked, “How did this happen?”

His second-in-command, a man known only as Amit was about to offer an explanation when a person emerge from the debris. As the figure inched closer they realised it was the woman who had led the attack. “You look dazed,” said the leader, “can you tell us what happened?”

“It was that Kejriwal, sir,” she said. “He’s tougher than we thought.”

“But you had me,” thundered the leader. “How could you fail with me as your mascot?”

“Don’t blame me,” said the woman, “I am new to politics.”

As they argued, another worker limped towards them. “Sir, what happened to the wave? We were waiting for it but it never came. In the meantime we were hit by a tsunami.”

“But I addressed five meetings in four days,” said the leader, “wasn’t that enough to generate a wave?”

The third man, one of the many secretaries of the leader, who had quietly listened all along, spoke up. “Sir, there is a technical problem in generating a wave in Delhi. It is landlocked. Waves can only be generated in the sea, you know. Perhaps, we should have tried to kick up a dust storm.”

The woman interrupted. “I thought our leader’s suit with his name printed on it was supposed to create waves?”

“It did,” said Amit, “but not the right kind.”

“Perhaps the print was two small,” said the secretary. “A larger font would have attracted more attention.”

There was an uneasy pause in the conversation while all introspected on what had happened. Their reverie was broken by the arrival of a smart looking fellow with a laptop. He had been hired by the leader to fine tune battle preparations. “Sir, we did not lose,” he asserted.

“At last someone with good news,” the leader said.

“I have more details about the battle,” the laptop fellow said, “and you will be glad to know that although we got a drubbing, the good news is that our vote share is still intact.”

The leader was happy. “So what you are saying is, my five speeches worked…. I better tweet that to my followers.”

“Of course, the bad news is that the number of seats won by us do not match our vote share,” the laptop fellow said.

The leader nodded and whispered to his Amit. “Ask the law ministry if we can promulgate an ordinance to change that.”

Amit asked the laptop fellow, “Did you think we over played the Congress-mukt Bharat slogan?”

“I don’t know sir,” he said, “but right now we have a BJP-mukt Delhi……. I think we need to rework our slogans. Tweak them a bit, you know…. We also need to do something about that ghar wapsi programme.”

“What’s wrong with it?” asked Amit.

“When our workers went to the people they said, half of us do not have proper ghars so where is the question of ghar wapsi,” the laptop fellow explained.

“People misunderstand everything,” the leader lamented.

Half-an-hour later the three men were alone and the secretary said, “We need to find someone to blame for this fiasco or else they will blame us.”

“I already thought about that,” Amit said. “I think we’ll blame it on political climate change.”

As they walked towards their cars, the secretary asked, “Sir, after this fiasco how should we approach the forthcoming electoral battles?”

“I don’t know what Amit has in mind,” the leader said, “but I am going to start wearing a muffler.”

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