Tuesday, August 25 2020

Dive In

These glasses have been lying in a drawer for the best part of fifty years. The vendor literally told me to throw them away if they were 'no good'. Now he gets a life-changing sum of money.

That’s what a British auctioneer said about a pair of Gandhi-ji’s glasses that sold for £260,000—within six minutes and way above the estimated price of £15,000. The gold-plated glasses were owned by an elderly man in Bristol—and originally given to a relative by Gandhi-ji who met him in South Africa in the 1920s. They’d been lying in a drawer for over 50 years! Illustration: Parth Savla.

Big Story

(Gandhi) Khandaan: Season seven, Episode 1046

The TLDR: The so-called mutiny against the Gandhi family followed a predictable script—more thaka than an episode of ‘Balika Vadhu’. Son defended Mother’s honour. Mother played martyr. Loyalists rose to their queen’s defense. BJP made a brief cameo as an off-screen villain. Much of this Zoom-hosted drama was leaked to TV channels, which in turn sparked a Twitter kerfuffle. All of it ended in a widely-expected whimper. But the very monotony of this latest episode confirms what everyone already knows: There will be no reboot of a tired franchise that is way past its cancellation date. 


The recap: The story thus far:

  • Over the weekend, the Indian Express published contents of a letter signed by 23 senior Congress leaders—which was sent to Sonia Gandhi. 
  • It called for a “full time and effective leadership” which is both “visible” and “active” in the field—and a sweeping set of reforms to revive the party. 
  • But the missive also included “three paragraphs recounting contributions to the party from Jawaharlal Nehru to Sonia and Rahul.”
  • Why this mattered: the signatories included not just big-name veterans like Shashi Tharoor and Kapil Sibal, but also the present leader of the opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad—and a number of former Chief Ministers and leaders of state party units. 
  • Sonia Gandhi soon after declared her intent to step down from her position as interim party chief—which she took on when Rahul resigned after the humiliating defeat in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
  • Die-hard Gandhi loyalists quickly accused the signatories of great betrayal and providing aid and comfort to the enemy, aka the BJP.
  • All this just ahead of a key Congress Working Committee meeting that was held on Monday. (The CWC is the core leadership group within the party.)


How it played out


In today’s edition

Headlines That Matter

  • Yet another George Floyd-like in Wisconsin
  • Indians are staying home
  • A virtual convocation for IIT Bombay
  • Blackberry is making a comeback


Smart And Curious

  • Goldman Sachs has its very own font called Goldman Sans
  • Crop tops are back in fashion…for men
  • Tokyo is showcasing see-through public toilets

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