On the Record

A Study in Contrasts

As Narendra Modi desperately tries to change his image, he’s now got new BJP President, Nitin Gadkari batting for him. Gadkari reveals his breathtaking naivete by comparing Modi with Mahatma Gandhi. Here’s how sociologist Shiv Vishvanathan pooh poohs Modi’s pretensions in the Indian Express.

Gandhi was concerned with the truth. He used his body as a site for experimentation in diet, protest and new ways of thinking. There was a stark simplicity to Gandhi’s idea of fasting and truth. Modi, on the other hand, is a propagandist who is determined to create an image for himself by inviting Ratan Tata, Narayana Murthy and Amitabh Bachchan to play his court jewels and brand ambassadors. Modi’s is a politics that has destroyed truth to focus on branding. His will to an image fades before Gandhi’s search for truth. An appropriation of images does not constitute truth. Modi may threaten current Gandhians who are an invertebrate lot. They may watch in silence as the CM holds forth from Sabarmati. But not all the exercises in branding or appropriation can alchemically change Modi into a facsimile of Gandhi.


  1. Why Congress is so envious of Modi?Perhaps they want ill development of Gujrat.Gujrat will keep doing wonders in the era of Modi.He is there because of his work,patriotism,commitment.Even a Gujrati Muslim today flaunts himself as the richest Muslim in India.People know what happened as unfortunate in 2002 and also know Modi was not responsible for it, that is the reason why he has been winning elections and fulfilling promises.Its better for congress to admire Modi and learn from him and go beyond dirty politics.

  2. It is apparent that for anyone to have some value in the Congress, they need to wax eloquence on the prince, and need to demonize Narendra Modi. Can you guys please break into the congress ranks on your own merit, rather than just screaming the same nonsense? Modi was summoned by the CBI and there is a buzz that he is not appearing etc etc., then when he appears and nothing sensational comes out, everyone is mum.

    Your attitudes are so miserable, and you project yourselves as progressives???

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