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   A Janata Dal Breakway Party spokesman was talking... (August 11, 1990)

A Janata Dal Breakway Party spokesman was talking to me late last night about a problem his party was facing now that it is to form the government. "To put it simply," he said, "we have got a total of 56 MPs. Out of these, 55 will have to be made ministers, deputy ministers, ministers of state, etc. that leaves only one person who can be an ordinary MP. Who should it be?"

"I see your problem," I said. "Everybody wants to be a minsiter and nobody wants to be the ordinary MP."

"It is the order way around," the spokesman said. "In a party of 56, anybody can be a minister, there is no honour in that. But only one can be an ordinary MP. So everybody wants to be an ordinary MP."

"I never though of that," I said. "You have serious problem."

"And how serious!" the spokesman said. "Mr. Chandra Shekhar is flooded with requests from all the members that they want to be ordinary MPs. He does not know what to do. Because anybody he makes an ordinary MP, the pothrs will feel upset."

"In these circumstance, if I was Mr. Shekhar I would make the senior most member of the breakway party the ordinary MP, which means Mr. Devi Lal," I said.

"We have already considered that, but the government needs a deputy prime minister also and Mr. Devi Lal, with experience in that portfolio, is eminently suited for it," the spokesman said.

"What about Mr. Yashwant Sinha? He has been close to Mr. Chandra Shekhar and it is about time Mr. Shekhar rewarded him fro his loyality by making him an ordinary MP," I said.

"Mr. Shekhar would like that very much, there is nobody more deserving the honour of ebing an ordinary MP than Mr. Sinha," the spokesman said. "However, Mr. Shekhar does not want it to appeat that that he is showing favouritism to somebody close to him, so Mr. Sinha will have to be a minister."

"Then I really do not know what Mr. Shekhar will do," I said. "We all though that the rathyatra would be hit first big rest, and instead this is going to be the one. You think he would promote Mrs. Maneka Gandhi as ordinary MP?"

"If he does that, the entire Breakway Janata Dal will breakway from the Breakway Janata Dal," the spokesman said.

"There is one other solution," I siad. "Mr. Chandra Shekhar could appoint himself as an ordinary MP, nobody could object to that."

"Mr. Chandra Shekhar's life's ambition has been to become prime minister. And now you want him to be an ordinary MP!" the spokesman said.

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