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   While there is a general euphoria in the country over the results of the Punjab elections... (May 10, 1985)

While there is a general euphoria in the country over the results of the Punjab elections, not everybody is happy with them. For instance, the Akali Dal-L is not at all happy.

A spokesman of the Dal was telling me: "What is there to be happy where we have lost the elections!" "What nonsense are you talking you won the elections. Not just won. won by a sweeping majority," I said.

The spokesman or the Akali Dal-L looked sceptical, though it is difficult to look sceptical or anything else when half your face is covered with a flowing beard. He said: "You say that we have won and some of your newspapers say that we have won but everybody knows that the real victory has gone to Mr. Rajiv Gandhi and his party."

"You have got it all wrong." I said "Of course you have won the results of the elections are before you to check and show to the world. Even the election commissioner will say that you have won. If he has not said so already, it is because nobody has asked him."

The spokesman looked more sceptical: "If we have won then why is the Congress-I celebrating."

"You know how it is with the Congress-I," I said "Whatever their leader tells them, they do. Their leader must have told them to look happy for reasons best known to himself, so they are looking happy. That does not mean they are celebrating any victory. Let me assure you the victory is very definitely yours."

"what difference does your assurance make," the spokesman said "Our hearts are broken here we worked so hard to win the elections and then, when we think we have won them everybody starts congratulating Mr. Rajiv Gandhi and saying the victory is really his and Mr. Nana Chudasama I understand, has put up a big banner in your Bombay saying that Mr.Gandhi has made a record in records."

"You should not worry about all these little things," I said, "People will congratulate Mr. Rajiv Gandhi even if he signs an agreement with the King of Bhhutan you know how our people are when it comes to the prime minister. But the fact remains that it is the Akali Dal-L which has formed the government if you had not won the elections?"

"Forming the government is not important," the spokesman said, "it is who wins that is important. And not one person so far has said Mr. Barnala has won they are all saying Mr. Gandhi has won."

"Hold the elections again, let the Congress-I win then congratulate us for having actually won," the spokesman said.

 
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