For better or verse: Sibal poetry at Khanna’s party

Ahead of the parliamentary elections,here is something that aims to bridge the divide between two of the biggest and competing political parties....

Written by Namrata Zakaria | Mumbai | Published:March 3, 2009 11:58 pm

Ahead of the parliamentary elections,here is something that aims to bridge the divide between two of the biggest and competing political parties. Via poetry,for added bonanza.

Vinod Khanna,BJP MP from Gurdaspur,Punjab,and his lawyer wife Kavita,will host a party-cum-poetry-reading event on Tuesday by Congressman Kapil Sibal,the Union Minister for Science and Technology. Sibal and Academy Award-winning poet-lyricist Gulzar will read from Sibal’s recently released book of poems,I Witness: Partial Observations,at Mumbai’s Taj Mahal Palace & Tower — the façade of which has been the image of the 26/11 terror strikes.

“I saw Kapil’s launch on TV last year and we thought it would be great to host a reading of his poems; we would enjoy it and so would our friends. It’s really nothing more than that,” says Kavita Khanna. “We wanted to do it in early December but the attacks didn’t let anyone think of anything else. And then it eventually got pushed to early March.”

On the guest-list are prominent names from Bollywood,politics as well as from Mumbai’s social circuit.

On whether the Congress-BJP cocktail was a deliberate move,she says,“I think it’s very interesting,especially since the elections are coming up,that people from two parties can get together and rise above their differences for the sake of a cause. People are not confined by their political beliefs and not defined by it. The day your political ideology consumes everything around you,then,in my opinion,it’s a sad day.”

I Witness,published by Roli Books,is Sibal’s attempt at penning verse (all of it typed on his Blackberry) on issues that are many and varied — politics,cricket,terrorism,feminism and global warming.

Interestingly,the MP from Chandni Chowk says the poems close to his heart are his love poems,inspired by his youth. He is currently working on his next book,a compilation of almost 100 poems.

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