Politicians, as a rule, never retire. But, of late, several of them have been retired by the people and the circumstances. And it is not liekly that they will come back.
For instance, Mr. N.T. Rama Rao; he was never a politician, and once out he does not have the politician's tenacity to climb back to power. Besides, the people will never re-accept him. He was cast in the role of a superman, no doubt provided by his many film personalities, now that image is gone, defeated and humbled by the Congress fo all parties.
Mr. Buta Singh is also out for ever, he should settle down with his sons in Germany. It was not his fault that the Congress lost, but he has been blamed for it. And Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, like a ploilt child who has been denied his toy, has refused to talk to him.
Mr. Natwar Singh is also permanetly out, and that a lot of people will say is one good riddance. It is difficult to abide a man who considers himself an intellectual. On Doordarshan on one occasion, interviewing M.F. Husain, he began the interview: "We intellectuals…" Neither he nor Hussain is an intellectual, and Hussain, at least, does not claim to be an intellectual, he has been provided the position of genius.
Nearer home, Mr. A.R. Antulay is finished. He may have got back into the party's favour, to the extent of getting a ticket, and won in the elections, but he will never go beyond being an ordinary MP and in time he will lose that also. He should have laid low, then the case agains thim would not have been reopened. But people like Mr. Antulay never lie low, they are fighters.
All those who came from outside into politics, civil servants and film actor, are finished. Mr. Amitabh Bachchan, as politician, was finished a long time back. But people are saying he is finished as an actor also. That, I do not agree; all that he needs is one good tole, an intelligent script, and he will be back at the top.
Pour concern is with career politicians, people who have never done a day's work in their lives and who have no other source of income than an MPs or an MLAs salary, though they seem to be living very well on that. With a few exceptions, they will never be retired and will keep coming back.
Mr. Sharad Pawar is the outstanding example of the great survivors of politics. He belongs to no party, he has no one definite leader, he has no vast following, but nobody can dislodge him, forget retire him.
Mr. Rajiv Gandhi also in a few short years has become a politician. It was thought he would retire to Italy, but he has stayed on and its waiting for the day when he would return to his nightly apperances on Doordarshan.
There is also Mr. Ramakrishan Hegde. He has two moral and criminal charges against him, he has been forced to resign from even a non-position as deputy-chairman of the planning commission, and yet he can one day end up as prime minister.