This year has been marked by politicians turning writers, leading to many views emerging on the same. I also have a view, because I have basic metabolic functions – the presence of those entitle people to have a view.
To begin with, let me educate you about the typical Indian politician’s career graph.
It is like this:
1. Join student politics and pick the basic ropes like damaging public property, setting buses on fire, and talking loudly without making sense.
2. Then, get picked by a political party, and grovel your way up the ranks.
3. Get a position of power, soak in it to your gills.
4. At this point, lose the power of discernment between what is logic and what is, well, lizard droppings.
5. Then, you turn old – very, very old.
6. This does not mean you retire. You continue, now with lot of whining, complaining and adult diapers.
7. You write a book.
I don’t know much about Natwar Singh except maybe a guess that he does not like Italian. I will be able to comment more on the book when I read it (hah! fat chance!).
But, I can discuss the overall concept of politicians turning writers.
I think it works beautifully. People need to improvise with their weapons of choice as they grow older – I mean, do you realize how difficult it is for an 80 year old to hobble around with a weak bladder, cataract and a gun? Do you have any respect for old people? Even verbal spats are tough – what if their dentures fall out just when they are about to make their most potent argument?
Writing is the best option.
There are lots of benefits related to writing disclosures, my friend Papia Saraf tells me via this study (Some decades back, I was a student of Psychology at the University of Allahabad – some friends did not realize that the course was over, and are still studying. Papia is one of them).
“There are benefits associated with disclosive writing. Individuals who write about traumatic events are physically healthier than control groups that do not. Individuals who write about the perceived benefits of traumatic events achieve the same physical health benefits as those who write only about the trauma (King & Miner, 2000).
Individuals who write about their life goals and their best imagined future achieve similar physical health benefits to those who write only about traumatic events.
Further, writing about life goals is significantly less distressing than writing about trauma, and is associated with enhanced well-being (King, 2001).” *
Another benefit of writing laments in a book and printing it on high-quality paper adds lots of credibility to it. I remember the time when six year old few girls in our apartment came to my house and complained that my (then) six-year old was mean.
‘Aunty, she WROTE ‘You ar supar bad’ on a piece of paper’.
My daughter insisted that she had not written it, saying that was not her handwriting.
Really, do six-year olds have a handwriting?
I was livid. I reproached her.
‘You should have written – ‘You are super bad’. I am ashamed of you.’
Writing is a beautiful means of expression – when so many people are turning to it, those with bad spelling, bad grammar, bad breath, why not our politicians?
To all those detractors who are alleging that our politicians are writing these books to make money, let me beseech you to consider the reasons given above, to be more empathetic, and answer one question –
‘Where are those writers who make money?’
*If you did not understand the findings of this study, stand in a corner and write ‘Freud’ 1000 times in your notebook.