Idris Ali is a Member of the Parliament in the Lok Sabha from West Bengal’s Basirhat constituency.
On Wednesday, a day before Mamata Banerjee casted aspersions on the Indian Army in a bid to attack the Modi government, Ali arrived at the Parliament wearing this:
Yes, his kurta had photos of Mamata Banerjee on it. The Trinamool Congress leader said that his party chief led a life so simple that she should be revered by households across the country.
His suggestion was that people should have a portrait of the West Bengal Chief Minister in their homes just like they have the photos of “Rabindranath Tagore, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi”.
Well, there is no problem with a party leader praising his party chief. In their overenthusiasm to keep themselves in the good books of their bosses, party leaders often touch such high levels of sycophancy that even fanboys would be embarrassed.
The problem is that there was hardly any hullabaloo over what Ali did. Imagine if this were a BJP leader and the kurta had the image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. By now it would have been a national issue.
‘They’ (you know who) would have chest-thumped in opinion pieces, on the streets and on TV claiming how this validated their understanding of PM Modi’s image.
The intelligentsia, however, ignored Ali’s act. Trinamool made no mention of it, and Mamata drew our attention to the Army for a flimsy reason.
Ali himself is not a gentleman of politics. (Hardly anyone is!) In 2014 he had quite bluntly said that Bengal will “burn” if Mamata was arrested in the Saradha chit fund scam.
In January 2016 he threatened to cut off the tongue and break the bones of CPI(M) leader Gautam Deb. And following the Pathankot terror attacks, this MP accused the PM of having links with terrorists. His party had to distance itself from the remarks.
In June 2016 Ali compared Mamata to Mother Teresa and Goddess Saraswati during the Zero Hour of the Parliament.