BANSI LAL (26 August 1927 – 28 March 2006)
Bansi Lal’s rise in politics began with his Rajya Sabha membership. The then Congress President UN Dhebar was sent a slate of three names for hand-picking the candidate. Dhebar was allergic to Jats, and believed that all Jats have Singh in their name. Of the three listed names, Bansi Lal was the only non-Singh.
He was rude, blunt, matter-of-fact, and down-to-earth. As CM his role model was Partap Singh Kairon. Once Kairon was stopped by demonstrators who were shouting: कैरोन्शाही नहीं चलेगी. Kairon told them
जब नहीं चलेगी तब नहीं चलेगी, अभी तो चल रही है
and proceeded ahead.
Thee is a similar incident involving Bansi Lal. There was a black flag demonstration against him .
He told the demonstrators. मेरी मा
सात गज़ का घाघरा पहनती थी. मैं उसमे से बाहर आ गया. तुम्हारी झंडिया क्या रोकेंगी.
He caught Indira Gandhi’s eye by electrifying whole of Haryana. His bete noire Pt Bhagwat Dayal Sharma said in an election meeting. There are poles and wires, but there is no current in the wire.
Bansi Lal’s reply: अपने बाप का बेटा है तो हाथ लगा के बता.
He endeared himself to Sanjay Gandhi by allotting him land for Maruti car. At the time Congress election symbol was cow and calf. Bansi Lal told his cronies: बछड़ा अपने पास रखो, गाय खुद आ जाएगी.
PS. In South India, excesses of Emergency were not common knowledge. I realised the extent of alienation, when post-Emergency, Bansi Lal apologised for the excesses: If Bansi Lal is apologising, things would really have been bad.