Sunday, 17 June 2007


If the Herald allowed itself to be Druapadised (well, hmm… we just coined this word -- what we are trying to say very simply is, ‘stripped’. Remember Mahabharata -- Duryodhana – Dushyasana – Draupadi.
In the contemporary context it could be read as
Herald – Raul – Robin – Journalism)
in the run up to elections, Gomantak Times seems to be following suit in the post poll scenario.
How else do you explain this article in Goa's smartest looking newspaper? Understood, the paper is trying to introduce a new MLA to the people. But how can any journalist worth his salt justify these comments which have been incorporated in the article? ‘Dayanand’s heart beats for the poor.’ Or say how about ‘When he narrates all this and more, his sincerity gets reflected in his eyes.’
PENPRICKS suggests that the writer Khandeparkar either gets himself a thorough ideological detox or a complete journalistic overhaul. And the desk, maybe Ashley needs to get them a new set of spectacles.


By Nilesh Khandeparkar
By all accounts, this is a rags to riches story which could be a potential delight of Bollywood directors like Mahesh Bhatt and Yash Chopra. Of how a man, by sheer grit and determination, overcomes the hurdles of poverty and adverse circumstances to be well educated and succeed in a profession which is considered a virtual minefield – politics. (Watch out for this writer. He is will have written four biographies within the next decade. His penchant for eulogising is unending)
Pernem MLA Dayanand Sopte’s father expired when he was barely one year old. This made the two sublings of the Sopte family – Dayanand and his younger brother take on the mantle of the whole family. That was many years ago. Since then, he has come a long way. Now, Dayanand owns three hardware shops spread over parts of North Goa like Pernem, Arambol and Beti – Verem. Add to that, two trucks, and that explains the success story of this businessman. And he is well educated too. Dayanand holds a masters degree in Commerce and an LLB as well.
“I feel youngsters should not face the same difficulties which came my way. Towards that end, it is my endeavour to help the youth obtain quality education and jobs,” he says. One of the reasons why her felled political giant Jeetendra Deshprabhu of the Congress was his constant touch with his voters, his relations towards the poor and the downtrodden and of course, the gargantuan efforts put in by the BJP cadre, a fact Dayanand states with pride.
A Talent Spotted
However, this story would well have not been written had Mandrem MLA Lakshmikant Parsekar not identified the talent in Dayanand and urged him to have a go at politics. That was in the year 1999. “Within 15 days of Parsekar’s offer, I decided to accept it,” he informs. But before joining the BJP the same year, Dayanand had been involved in social work for the last 15 years. “I felt politics would be the right vehicle to carry on with social work in a more effective way,” he adds.
One look at Dayanand confirms this. The soft-spoken man has firm faith in the power on convincing others rather than bossing around. That indeed has paid rich dividends. Although Dayanand contested the assembly elections in the year 2002 and ended up on the losing side, he has made his mark. “Voters got me elected to Korgaon Zilla Parishad soo after. This was the turning point in my career,” he recalls. And now, he has reached the pinnacle of his political career by representing the Pednekars in the State legislative assembly.
Priorities For Pernem
Being a politician makes him have his ear firmly to the ground. With that in mind, he lists out his priorities. Streamlining facilities at the Tuem hospital, speeding up expansion plan Tuem Industrial Estate and providing employment to the youth of Pernem are his topmost priorities he says. Adding, “Three industrialists have already approached me with a proposal to set up pollution-free industries in Tuem Industrial Estate. In the next eight to fifteen days, I will personally pursue work on expediting expansion plans of Tuem industrial estate – a blue print of which has been drawn up, but was not followed up for the last three years,” he informs. His aim is simple – to provide maximum employment to the Pednekar youth.
Can he do all that, given the fact that his party finds itself on the opposition benches? That’s where Dayanand’s persuasive and convincing skills, which he so firmly believes in, come in handy (note: persuasive skills eh, Don Corleone anyone ;)) “If one is really committed to one’s work and maintains good relations with all, then, despite being in the opposition, a lot of work can be accomplished,” is his repartee.
When he narrates all this and more, his sincerity gets reflected in his eyes. Somehow you tend to believe in what he says. (note: Somehow, this seems unbelievable) “Basically I am emotional at heart and forgiving by nature,” he says looking straight into your eyes (note: Oh my God... its love) and terms this his weakness in politics. However, these very qualities have helped him cultivate friends from all walks of life and in all fields. Be that as it may, he firmly believes that he will achieve whatever he aims at, under any circumstances. And in all his endeavours, he has strong support from his Ardhangini, his wife who is a lecturer and is also highly qualified. She even went campaigning with a group of 80 to 100 women workers during the recently concluded Assembly elections,” he adds.Dayanand’s heart beats for the poor. (note: Is it in the same way in which Madhuri Dixit's heart beats too? The Dil Dhak Dhak karne laga types?)
That’s because he himself had humble beginnings (note: this is unending).
That is also one of the reasons why Pednekar’s chose him to represent them at the State assembly.


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