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I am ready for the yatra test — no, not Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo one

If you want to venture out of your home on a Yatra amid Covid fears, make it the Australian one. Rahul Gandhi can wind Bharat Jodo tour up.

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The other day, seeing me lost in my thoughts, my husband asked me what the matter was.

“I am dreaming of a yatra,” I replied.

My husband was aghast. ‘Don’t tell me you’re joining the Bharat Jodo Yatra.”

“Certainly not,” I said. He knows I am completely apolitical and against dynastic entitlement. In any case, one needs to be a high-profile personality, or a celebrity, or belong to the vulnerable sections to be able to walk alongside the Congress top brass.

He agreed with me and said the Yatra may well wind up at any time now considering the health ministry’s advisory.

The minister’s letter asking the Congress to follow Covid protocols or disband the walkathon is indeed “selective” and, as my husband said, “singles out the Congress roadshow from so many other unmasked rallies and gatherings”.

I couldn’t help but wonder if the ruling party has a secret liking for Rahul Gandhi. “It wants to protect him against the deadly virus strain,” I said.

“It could well be. Otherwise, why would the ruling party offer the Congress an honourable way out of the physical and mental strain of the Yatra,” wondered my husband.

This is certainly a face-saver for the Congress. It’s surprising that the Bharat Jodo think-tank is cribbing about the health minister’s letter when it should ideally appreciate the underlying concern.

According to my husband, this could be a great chance for Rahul Gandhi to “take a well-deserved holiday, in his favourite foreign getaways; far from the circus and the political spotlight.”

By now it was clear I wasn’t dreaming of the Bharat Jodo Yatra. My husband realised this and so asked me which ‘yatra’ I was planning to attend.

“A cricket one, of course,” I replied. Australia is coming to India early next year to play a four-Test series and three ODIs. I want to be at all the four venues where the Test matches will be played – Nagpur, Delhi, Dharamsala, and Ahmedabad.

“That’s brave of you, Mina, to roam about with Covid around,” said my husband.

But he also knows that I am a cricket freak, and quite adventurous when it comes to the gentleman’s game.

“Sure. I have seen you stand, the only lady in a long queue of men, waiting to buy Test tickets. The Congress will appreciate your boldness,” he said.

“How so?”

“You are a mouse at home, but lion-hearted outside!”

Mina Anand is a Bangalore-based lawyer and writer. She tweets @minacricket. Views are personal.

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