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Rahul Gandhi, who may or may not be a prime ministerial candidate in 2014, depending on who he talks to, has decided that the best way to beat the system is to appear on Prime Time. The Time is Now, his media advisers told him, so he is channel surfing, appearing one on one on a series of news channels. The nation, after all, needs to know. His second interview with a news channel has already taken place. Here are exclusive extracts.
Celebrity Anchor: Thank you very much for appearing on ‘Pass the Buck’.
RG: Really? I thought I was appearing on something called ‘Left, Right and Centrist’. I must be in the wrong building.
CA: No no, this is where we ask the tough questions and don’t take no for an answer.
CA: Is that an answer or a question?
RG: I mean, that’s the line I heard from the last interviewer, so I’m a little confused. Maybe my team sent me to the wrong address. They have being doing that a lot lately, in Amethi, in Muzaffarnagar, they even sent me to the wrong tea stall when I was meeting with vendors last week.
CA: On this show, you can’t pass the buck. Talking about tea stalls, now that the BJP has declared their PM candidate, isn’t it time you declared your ambition?
RG: My ambition is to empower women, my ambition is to empower children, my ambition is to empower the poor, my ambition is to empower the middle class, my ambition is to…
CA: I meant your personal ambition in politics, please be specific.
RG: Rahul Gandhi believes in specifics. Rahul Gandhi believes in empowering women, he believes….
CA: Sorry for interrupting, but you still haven’t answered the specific question and given a specific answer.
RG: When you were a baby, didn’t you have a lot of questions? Specific questions? And no one was around to give you answers, specific answers? It’s like that. You have to find your own answers.
CA: Okay, lets put it this way. I’m assuming you are better prepared now to take on the tough challenges ahead.
RG: Yes, my team has been briefing me on how to conduct an interview without talking about specifics.
CA: I meant better prepared to become PM if the Congress were to form a government in 2014?
RG: I like difficult to tough issues, I like dealing with them. Women’s empowerment is a tough issue and I’m dealing with it.
CA: My question was to do with you being Prime Minister?
RG: The system in this country needs to change. Women need to be empowered. I am blind to everything else. What Rahul Gandhi wants to do is change the system. What Rahul Gandhi wants to do is empower the women in this country. You are a woman, don’t you want empowerment?
CA: My question is about you and wanting power. You are avoiding the issue.
RG: What I want is to empower…..
CA: You are already de facto PM.
RG: No, de fact of the matter is…
CA: You ask for the cap on gas cylinders to be raised and the Cabinet approves it.
RG: I want India to be the centre of manufacturing in the world. Manufacturing more LPG cylinders is a start.
CA: Arvind Kejriwal has displayed a list naming you as one of the corrupt politicians in the country, along with Narendra Modi and Mayawati.
RG: That’s impossible.
RG: The BJP’s prime ministerial candidate and Rahul Gandhi cannot be on the same page.