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Sibling Rivalry August 22, 2010

Posted by Gomathi Reddy in Desi Indian, General, News and Current Affairs, Politics.
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Sibling rivalry seems as old as the universe, and a show worth a thousand arc lights! Right from newly created stars to nations, from wild animals to domesticated ones; from mythology and legendry heroes, to current day political scenario – sibling rivalry is the thread that passes through the most compelling of life plots.

Mark and Scott Kelly

Twin Astronauts - Mark and Scott Kelly

While there are a few who have taken sibling REVELRY to great heights, like the Kelly twins(Mark and Scott) who are the first twin astronauts to command NASA space missions at the same time or the Smother Brothers (Tom and Dick) who were known for their 50 plus years of touring and branding as folk singers and television stars, nothing can beat the interest that Sibling RIVALRY can create.

Sibling rivalry defies even psychoanalysts and their theories – from Freud to David Levy –  much has been said and discussed, though no known pattern of behaviour exists.

The Bible’s version of Cain and Abel was my first brush with understanding sibling rivalry and just when I thought such characters existed only in Christian mythology, my bed-time Chandamama was dishing out stories on Vali and Sugriva, the Pandavas and the Kauravas, Kadru and Vinata, Ganesha and Karthikeya, and an endless list of rivalries, from the Hindu mythology. As I moved over to history at school, the Indian history was full of strife and sibling rivalry – an all too common feature of the Moghul emperors, of the sub-continent.

What’s so interesting about sibling rivalry, if it is all too common? It is the origin of evil and strife.  And every strife, must end in a battle. And every battle’s purpose is to create a distinct identity for the players.  And in a battle, the distinction is the same as that of winners and losers.  Immaterial of whether sibling rivalry is between Gods and demons, human beings or animals the onlookers  cheer either one of the sibling, and generally maraud, more as an extension of their entertainment.

In the recent Indian business scenario, the Ambani brothers Mukesh and Anil, saw some peak performances to their respective share holding and prosperity, because of some mud-slinging, and washing dirty linen in public acts, immediately after the death of their father Dhirubhai Ambani, the founder of Reliance.  They lost a little out of these inflated market shares, but gained overall, beyond what they would’ve, if they had not pinned up their sibling rivalry on their sleeves.

The latest to hit the International polity is the story on British Labour Party MPs, Ed and David Milind.  In Indian politics there are many who reek the family dirty linen – The worst being the killing of BJP Politician Pramod Mahajan by his trigger happy younger sibling Pravin Mahajan, on 22nd April, 2006.

While the south Indian media is strife with interest in the brewing rivalry of Telengana Rashtra

MK Stalin and MK Azhagiri

Tamil Nadu CM's sons - MK Stalin and MK Azhagiri

Samiti President, K.Chandrasekar Rao’s children Kavitha Rao and Rama Rao, one cannot miss the fact, that national parties like Congress get to benefit if the sibling rivalry between the sons of Tamil Nadu’s CM M.Karunanidhi, Union Minister  M.K.Azhagiri and Deputy CM of Tamil Nadu M.K.Stalin, hits the roof.

But, what makes sibling rivalry in business and politics interesting? To the intelligentsia, it is the amount of wealth that sifts through siblings, and the kind of influence these siblings exert on the polity of a nation, that makes it interesting. To the rest, it is the eternal thirst to share one’s condemnations or appreciation of the behavioral dynamics of blood-bonds, over wealth and power bonds.

And I am no different. Okay, now I am ready with my all too earnest “Victory to M.K.Stalin,” for the Tamil Nadu show, and for every other one it would be, “C’mon C’mon, anyone of you, C’mon,” in between mouthfuls of pop corn.

Hey, this is like watching the great gladiator fights at the Roman Colosseum, the 21st century version, live, 24 x 7!

Keep your eyes and ears open, and you can’t miss the show.



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