From mock funerals to life size statues, Sonia Gandhi is the most talked about person in Andhra Pradesh
Dinesh Akula | November 15, 2013
With the decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh, AICC president Sonia Gandhi has become the focal point in both Telangana and Seemandhra. But with contrasting styles marking the reactions, the angel is reduced to a demon in Seemandhra. Riled Samaikhyandhra protesters built a tomb in Tirupathi to vent their anger. After all the bashing, there is some solace on the other side. Some of her loyalists in Telengana are building a temple, apparently to boost her battered image.
Gandhi became the most hated personality in the Seemandhra region; post her decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh. For over 100 days now, countless mock funerals were held for her in the two volatile regions. The anger ran so high that even a pseudo tomb was built in her name in Tirupathi.
But after all the brickbats, a temple coming up for her in Telangana will serve more than a soothing balm. In fact, the all-powerful woman leader can afford sporting a wide grin once again as the Sonia temple is being seriously contemplated!
The idea is the brainchild of a handful of veteran leaders, eternally loyal to the Gandhi family. But in the forefront of this race is Shankar Rao, the maverick legislator from Cantonment area in Secunderabad.
Before anybody can steal the thunder, the mercurial leader is busy these days scouring for a suitable place to construct the temple for his goddess.
The controversial former minister is yet to finalise the land but that did not stop him from ordering a statue to be installed in the temple. He has roped in a team of expert sculptors to make the life-size statue of Sonia.
The ‘panchaloha’ statue is expected to cost around Rs 9 lakhs. Besides looking for an ideal location, Shankar Rao is also eagerly awaiting a formal approval of the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation.
Blind in their worship of the Gandhi-Nehru dynasty, a majority of the Telangana Congress leaders instantly welcomed the idea. But outside the political realm, it is being seen as the height of sycophancy.
If Shankar Rao ends up building a Sonia temple, then Andhra Pradesh would be emulating neighbouring Tamil Naidu. The Tamil state is perhaps the first in the country where crazy fans constructed temples in the past for their favourite film stars and politicians.
From a pseudo grave to a real temple, Sonia will surely relish the T-balancing act to revive her battered image.
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