ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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WEST BENGAL-Hopeful Sign

the reason may be the dilemmas that face him. The policies he has been compelled to introduce and implement in the interest of the status quo were sure to lead to mass discontent and alienation, as indeed they have. The real alternative is a radical socioeconomic restructuring, striking deep at the roots of vested interests all around, for which task his own social origin and political upbringing under Indira Gandhi and her son have not equipped him. On the other hand, compulsions of our democratic polity, that is, the need to garner popular votes periodically, keep htm tongue-tied about his real purposes and often pull him back from the actual implementation of his basic policies. These paralysing dilemmas condemn Rao to indecision. As these are not matters to be shared with the public, he is uncommunicative. Finally, charisma is not something that always goes with fine features and a fair complexion. Often it is a function of clarity of thought and firmness of purpose and grows out of people's perception of a reflection of their own cherished aspirations in the leader's personality. Compared with many other leaders of his time, M K Gandhi had few advantages of birth or appearance. If he scored over the aristocratic lineages and features of them all in terms of charisma, the obvious reason was Gandhi's responsiveness to the spoken and unspoken aspirations of the masses. The charisma that the two lesser Gandhis possessed was really an inheritance from Jawaharlal Nehru who had something of Gandhi's responsiveness plus his own looks.

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