Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Unfitting Cap

The latest news from Indian Sports field has been rather surprising. For a passionately silent man, Indian cricket’s favourite son Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar is likely to be nominated for Rajya Sabha of the Indian Parliament as one of the twelve nominated members. For the unaware, Rajya Sabha or the Upper House of Indian Parliament has members elected by the elected representatives of State assemblies. There are twelve seats to be nominated by the President of India which is usually reserved to the persons excelling in various fields ranging from Arts, Science, Literature, Humanities to Business and Service. 

As he has got so many “First Person” feather on his cap, Tendulkar is also the first person from the Sports field to be honoured as a Member of Parliament through Honorary Nominations. There have been a slew of celebrities who have been nominated for this post as the Member of Parliament whom he will join in the House. The earlier nominees of repute include Musician Lata Mangeshkar, Sitar Mastero Pandit Ravi Shankar, Novelist Sri.R.K.Narayan, Dancer Smt.Rukmini Devi Arundale, Sri.Javed Akthar and others.

Ever since he achieved his dream of winning the World Cup last year, the champion batsmen’s career has taken some drastic turns. His wait for the elusive hundredth hundred led to so many detractors. Poor show by Team India and the senior batsmen did not do any good and the calls for the culling of the great man from the side have grown. Especially his future in the ODI side is being questioned.
While India’s test team still needs his presence for few more matches to allow the smoother transition, the limited overs squad has been pretty settled over the years and the competition for places among the promising batsmen has been intense. There are more than a handful of batsmen knocking the doors of Selection. He has not yet made clear whether he likes to continue until the 2015 World Cup. While India may still be strong with his presence in the place where it was crushed not long ago, the clarity and clear vision is lacking.

If he is not going to last the distance, it is high time India needs to settle in for the newer entrants and provide them adequate experience and matches before they defend the crown Down Under. The selectors made a brave decision by dropping Ganguly and Dravid soon after the 2007 World Cup and the dividends paid up when the newer boys settled in and it culminated with the ultimate glory of World Cup win last year. Time is ripe to speak with the Master on such lines clearly. His case is different from the other two since, he can still score runs at the pace of ODIs as he showed in World Cup last year and can contribute in a big manner. But he needs to reassess and make it clear.

Coming to the last month or so, he has many controversies lingering with his name in the last two months alone, than his whole career. The wait for the elusive ton has been frustrating for the fans and fraternity and media cashed on this opportunity to make allegations and call for his head. At this juncture his slow batting to reach the hundred was among the reasons for India’s loss to Bangladesh in Asia Cup and subsequent ouster from the tournament. But then for a man who has carried the side on his shoulders for two decades, he deserves some lee way to get to a major landmark and it was the duty of others to have scored quickly.

His reactions post the century has been evident of the magnanimity of the hurt he was under. Indeed it was heartening to see him speak out his mind and question the so called analysts who have no right or class to question the greatest batsmen in the game since Sir Don. Infact this was a long overdue reaction from the man who has remained a mute spectator as Karma worked around him.

Next was the elusive absence of the Man for the felicitation organised by the BCCI to his long time friend and partner in records, Rahul Dravid. He had been to meet a doctor over his fitness since the appointment was fixed a month ago but for a society waiting to pouch on, this minor flame was enough ignitions. The persons who made allegations failed to remember that it was indeed Tendulkar who first paid his tribute to Dravid soon after the latter called his day. The two men have been the axle of Indian batting for a decade and half and know both other very well. But alas! The critics won’t spare.

Finally the surprising decision of accepting the Nomination for the Memeber of Parliament by Tendulkar has arrived. There is nothing political about this since, it is usual procedure in India and he is a richly deserving candidate. But for the political scenario existing in Indian Parliament, a man of his stature and honesty do not fit in.

The nomination has been made by the ruling party which is exposed day in and day out with one corruption or the other. The opposition will not make any big voice against since Tendulkar has fans in both the sides. Incidentally it has been the same party’s Government which has not conferred him with “Bharath Ratna” – the highest civilian award in India despite the repeated calls from those in many walks of life. It is looked up as a lame attempt by the ruling party to boost up its beleaguered image thanks to the non ending corruptions.  However if one man could have opposed this move, it was himself and he for some reason has not

His honesty, soft nature, humility, good will and persona do not suit to the one that is prudent among his future colleagues in the Upper House. Though this is a honorary post, it does needs some dedicated time. For an active cricketer such a dedicated time is a big thing. Tendulkar is known to spend hours and hours sweating out in the nets and his life has been cricket centric all through this years. At the far end of the career which has been the most stupendous in the modern era, an honour as a Member of Parliament just does not sit on his shoulder well

Honestly, it would have been great had he quit the limited overs with the World Cup high but his love and passion for the game has not allowed him. No doubt that he contributes immensely to the side both on and off field with his mere presence. But the recent controversies surrounding the man shows the reputation of the great man in a bad light. 

Sure that nothing can question or change his stature as Cricket’s very best but there can be chink in the armour of his wonderful persona if he allows himself to be dragged into such off field antics. The unadulterated love, the impeccable pride, the unflinching belief and the unquestionable devotion his fans have on him is so huge that the recent news on the Hero is making them baffled. And I am one of them!! Why so Master? We need you as same Tendulkar who took our breath away not just with the game but off it too.

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