Friday, July 11, 2008

Mumbo-jumbo, Gibberish, Babble, Gobbledygook

Amazing! Truly amazing. If you have not read the Malayskini interview of Samy Vellu, you really owe it to yourself to spend a few moments doing so. This has got to be one of the all-time unforgettable interview transcripts I’ve ever read.

Just when I thought Samy Vellu couldn’t make himself look any worse and embarrass himself further, he has – seemingly effortlessly – taken his reputation to a new low. I was in utter shock, horror, embarrassment, bemusement and - truth be told - at other moments, laughing hysterically reading the mumbo-jumbo, gibberish, babble, gobbledygook, political double-talk, and twaddle from the man in response to the reporters’ questions.

To give you a sense of the experience you’ll have, here’s a bit of an excerpt:

Question: ‘Providing education to the children without any discrimination is the constitutional responsibility of the Education Ministry. But you have been going around begging for money to put up Tamil schools for the children of the Indian community. Why do you have to do that?’

Samy Vellu: ‘You see, the education minister is not going to go from school to school to check the conditions.’

Here are another couple of other noteworthy brief exchanges:

Question: ‘…the question is why is the government not taking the responsibility to do it?’

Samy Vellu: ‘Let us all decide now. We don't touch the Tamil schools and let's wait for the government to build them.’

Question: ‘Why should not there be a declared government policy to build Tamil schools in areas where the schools are needed?’

Samy Vellu: ‘They have formulated the policy and it has been discussed. It will be further discussed to decide what the ways of doing it, what the requirements and what will be the best solutions. That's the way things work.’

What!!!!? You’ve got to be kidding me! If anyone ever needed one compelling example and explanation of why the state of vast numbers of marginalized Indians in the country is as such, you need not go further than read the interview in its entirety. The answer will stare you right in the face.

If this interview was part of the man’s strategy to reinvent himself and the MIC, he’s sure doing a fine job – like with his prior record as MIC president – of botching things up. Imagine, this is the guy who has been the BN regime’s spokesperson for Indians all these years. And if things go according to his plan, we’ll shortly see him reaffirmed as president of the party – yet again.

[Hey, Jiwi Katthaiah and S Pathmawathy, what I’d like to know is how did you guys manage to keep a straight face and last through the interview without cracking up? If you ask me, you guys deserve some kind of journalism award just for enduring the interview.]

Stay tuned, the Samy Vellu Show will continue….

G. Krishnan