CHAI PAR SUICIDE?
Meet Mankar. Sorry, he’s dead. Modi met him, though - for Chai Pe Charcha
- PT Bureau
Meet Mankar. Sorry, he’s dead. Modi met him, though - for Chai Pe Charcha



YAVATMAL: Meet farmer Kailas Kisan Mankar, native of village Dabhadi, Tehsil Arni. No, sorry, you can’t meet him. He died on Monday, December 11. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was fortunate to have met him, or Mankar was fortunate to have met Modi, who was still to become Prime Minister in that summer of 2014.

Modi jolted the country when he stopped by in Mankar’s village. Mani Shanker Aiyar’s "chai waala” barb was still in the air, and Modi was preparing to jump on it just as he jumped on to the dinner meeting between some Pakistani leaders and Aiyar.

As the wanna-be prime minister landed in Dabhadi, "Chai Pe Charcha” became an iconic event, marking every pit stop, every stump speech. Always careful while choosing his launch pads for electoral missiles, Modi had picked Dabhadi, because the village had reported the most farmer suicides. 

Modi became Prime Minister. Mankar did not have any hope that he will get an invite for a high tea, but people did think Dabhadi would not see another suicide. At least, not Mankar. He had shaken hands with Modi, become famous, given interviews. On Monday, he became the 18th farmer from village Dabhadi to commit suicide. He was 27, and isn’t the first farmer to have committed suicide after sharing a cup of tea with Modi. 
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He had shaken hands with Modi, become famous, given interviews. On Monday, he became the 18th farmer from village Dabhadi to commit suicide.

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If Prime Minister Modi missed his pal whom he befriended over a cup of tea, his speeches yesterday and today did not betray that fact.
 

Kailas Mankar, who owned three acres of land and was the sole bread winner for his family, was reeling under mounting debt, shattered by repeated crop failures. On Monday, when the BJP and the Congress were busy educating India about role of Pakistan, or lack of it, in Gujarat elections, Mankar preferred some poison over tea, ending perhaps many an argument that politicians indulged in.
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Now that Jantar Mantar is out of bounds for Dabhadi’s farmers, Mankar is no more, and Modi has shared a cup of tea with the likes of Barack Obama, one wonders if Dabhadi still brews something, other than hopelessness.
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Hope had crashed much before Mankar took the extreme step. Villagers from Dabhadi had gone to Delhi in April this year, under the leadership of local Congress leader Shivajirao Moghe to join a protest rally at Jantar Mantar, ostensibly to remind Modi of the promises that he had failed to fulfil.
 
Earlier, another farmer, Vithal Rathod (45), who hailed from Dabhadi village in Yavatmal, and had attended the 'Chai Pe Charcha' programme of Prime Minister Modi, had committed suicide on February 24, 2015

Now that Jantar Mantar is out of bounds for Dabhadi’s farmers, Mankar is no more, and Modi has shared a cup of tea with the likes of Barack Obama, one wonders if Dabhadi still brews something, other than hopelessness. Political activists seemed sure that the death will not make headlines in Gujarat election campaign, even if a lot of it is about farmers.
 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

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