Rahul Dravid for Next Indian President
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India has a problem with presidents. Of the many we’ve had, I can only think of S Radhakrishnan and Zakir Hussain — apart from Abdul Kalam — as men who merit our ungrudging respect. India’s presidents have been geriatric hacks, political time-servers who’ve been rewarded in the dusk of their careers with a sinecure in India’s finest residence. I’d say the current office-holder is the archetype, were it not for the fact that his predecessor was even less inspiring. Five years from now we’ll all struggle to recall her name—which is as it should be.
The best Indian presidents have been those who were not politicians. Abdul Kalam was a scientist, or, better put, a patriot-scientist: he was a brilliant promoter of India’s national interests, and knew how to manage the worst instincts of the political charlatans he had to answer to. Most impressive of all was his ability to ignite civic passion in the young. This is the generation that finds politics despicable, and hungers for Indian role models to emulate.
Abdul Kalam was rich in the virtues that young Indians crave in their leaders: humility, selflessness, a patriotism that isn’t bogus, humanity, egalitarianism, and team-spirit — the “team” being India. And it’s in that vein that I propose Rahul Dravid as India’s next president.
Dravid—“The Wall”—India’s finest Test batsman after Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar, is 44 years old perfectly placed to take fresh guard at Rashtrapati Bhavan.He would make Americans envious of our healthy handsome and young president !
Dravid isn’t just a champion sportsman. He’s a model citizen, his behaviour and demeanour offering a template of excellence to all those who observe it. He is also among the most thoughtful Indians alive.
Abdul Kalam showed us how important it is for a president to connect with the young. Dravid would do that, too, and beautifully. He’d also break forever the suffocating grip of geriatric politicians on the presidency of India.
So that I propose Rahul Dravid for Next Indian President.
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