Rahul Gandhi, Kanhaiya Kumar new stars on WhatsApp

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Rifat Jawaid

Two speeches from last week pretty much dominated the conversation on all social media platforms.

First it was the Congress vice president, Rahul Gandhi, who struck a chord even with his detractors when he spoke from his heart in the parliament.

Many felt that his speech in the parliament signalled his formal arrival on national politics. His Fair n Lovely jibe directly aimed at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, impromptu yet creative response on wrongly addressing the acting male Speaker of the Lok Sabha as ‘Madam Speaker’ and doing away with script to highlight the shortcomings of the BJP government provided perfect headline material to newspapers up and down the country.

Twitter users took to the microblogging site to express their admiration, while reports on his speech were fervently shared on Facebook.

Rahul’s speech was followed by the news of Kanhaiya Kumar’s release from Tihar jail.

The JNU students’ union leader, who was arrested by Modi government on false charges of sedition, was granted bail by the Delhi High Court. Kanhaiya’s first address to his fellow students on the campus drew unprecedented coverage with almost all national and regional TV channels beaming his speech live for nearly an hour.

Again, a widespread admiration followed with both social media users and politicians paying glowing tribute to his clarity of thought.

This one speech alone catapulted the 28-year-old students’ leader to a new-found stardom.

And the admiration for Rahul and Kanhaiya wasn’t confined to twitter and Facebook. Away from the public glare, WhatsApp users too discussed these two speeches endlessly with the dominating theme being of utter praise for both ‘representatives of youth’ albeit with different ideologies.

Here’s a glimpse to WhatsApp chat from a group consisting of predominantly former and serving military officers.

JK: Anyone watching Kanhaiya Kumar live? Reminds me of David vs Goliath. Hats off to his courage to say things the way they are.

SA: JK, I did. And you are right. I feel the way he and the whole was dealt with…He’s now a trailblazer.

AA: Just saw the video. Something very powerful brewing in here.

JK: SA, I don’t think the ruling dispensation would have seen this coming after the fabricated anti-national videos and efforts to scuttle the Rohith Vemula suicide protests at JNU…He raised pertinent questions for which none of the parties have a solution. So much of what he said resonates with my thoughts. May be tomorrow, I would be charged with sedition.

SA: hahaha, Totally my sentiments JK. Saath mein jail chalenge. AA, tu bhi aaja… What a speaker! And now he’s a bonafide leader..jail jo ho aaya.

JK : Lol

AA: hahaha. He said something about ‘aana jaana laga rahega jab tak jail mein chana rahega.’

JK: They (BJP) only helped in glorifying him further. What a boomerang!

SA: I don’t know how much, but this is going to catch on. They shot their own foot. Over confidence, arrogance and blinded by power.

AA: I also feel that country will not swing ‘left’ so easily. Which means Rahul Gandhi might be in luck. And after the last speech in the parliament, aided by new social media recruit, he’s gaining ground for sure.

SA: Bhai AA, jumlebaazon ke itne jumle sunne ke baad ab RaGa is also looking good for sure.

JK: Going by whatever history I remember, wherever students have been harassed, revolutions have begun

SA: But honestly, RaGa did speak quite well this time.

AA: What stumped the treasury most is him saying ‘haan main ghalati karta hoon. Aap jaisa nahi hoon. Logon ki sunta hoon phir sikhta hoon.’

SA: Yes, he appeared candid.

JK: I read today. RaGa made Modi look good in 2014. Today Modi made RaGa look good. Tonight Kanhaiya gave him the much required push. I think, it’s all mili bhagat!!

SA: Sahi pakde hain 🙂

MD: Missed the discussion on Kanhaiya. I was wondering if I was I was the only one who felt RG spoke very well. Glad to know I’m not going crazy.

NA; Kanhaiya’s speech was excellent. At such a young age what clarity of thought. I felt happy that coming generation is well read and knows what they want. And for once, even though RaGa faltered, he gave a good opposition speech

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