Politics

Mamata weds Socialism – The Indian Express

This is neither satire nor allegory. A groom called Socialism and a bride called Mamata Banerjee have tied the knot. As they solemnised their union on Sunday under the sickle and hammer, brothers of the groom, Communism and Leninism, looked on. This grand alliance, though, did not take place in West Bengal. In fact, the fates seem to have a sense of narrative consistency: The marriage took place in Salem district in a state ruled by Stalin.

Socialism is the third son of the Salem Communist Party of India district secretary, A Mohan. His two elder children are named after high-minded party principles as well. Mamata’s grandfather is responsible for her name — he was a fan of the now three-term Chief Minister of West Bengal. Social media, and even its more analogue counterparts, took great interest in the nuptials ever since the wedding card went viral last week. And why not? “Mamata Banerjee marries Socialism” is a great headline, and even better clickbait. Then, there’s the fact that many a left sympathiser, and quite a few liberals, had hoped that the Left Front and Trinamool Congress would bury their hostilities and ally in West Bengal to defeat the BJP before the elections. They wouldn’t have known that their wish, albeit in a symbolic and belated manner, would come true in Tamil Nadu.

Names, more often than not, are seen to be meaningful if they have a religious connotation. Even “Kabir”, so popular among secularists in North India at one point, has a hint of saintliness to it. Socialism, Communism and Leninism, as concepts go, can be as powerful as divinity, and also as distant. They can be of some consolation while waiting for Utopia. Don’t be surprised if there’s a spate of kids named Achhe Din.

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