Train robbery and the rumours
Posted March 22, 2015on:
Madhya Pradesh finance and liquor minister Jayant Malaiya is one of the richest politicians of the State. He was travelling to Delhi along with his politician wife Sudha Malaiya, who is also a consummate danseuse and noted historian. They were travelling in the coupe of a First AC coach of the Jabalpur-Hazrat Nizamuddin Express.
In the wee hours of March 19, as the train was passing along Mathura district in Uttar Pradesh, a group of armed robbers entered their compartment and deprived them of their valuables including a diamond ring. Sudha Malaiya was later quoted by the media as having stated that the robbers had threatened to chop off her finger if she did not remove the costly ring and gave it to them. The Malaiyas lodged a complaint with the Railway Police on reaching Hazrat Nizamuddin.
Now there are always rumours galore when something unusual happens to some big person. Jayant Malaiya surely is a big person as is his wife Sudha Malaiya. And it is not usual for the Malaiyas to be robbed or even cheated, collectively or separately. So it was a perfect subject for the gossip mongers in Bhopal, and may be elsewhere also.
Some were wondering (that is a subtle way of spreading rumours) why one of the seniormost ministers of Madhya Pradesh was travelling by train; even lesser luminaries are known to fly. Since the query was made to start a discussion, soon the gossips were talking that the Minister was carrying a huge amount of money which could have been detected during scanning of baggage at the airport. In a train there was no such fear.
Once it was ‘established’ that the Minister was transporting money, the natural supplementary queries were how much and for whom. One felt that it was the regular money that the ruling party in Madhya Pradesh gives to BJP President Amit Shah for the party fund. An enterprising gossip ventured that it was a ‘special amount’ sent by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to keep Prime Minister Narendra Modi in good humour after the Prime Minister gave a patient hearing to the Congress leaders who were reported to have submitted ‘evidence’ of the involvement of Chouhan and his wife Sadhna Singh Chouhan in the stinking VYAPAM scam. The amount of the money that the Minister was carrying ranged between Rs one crore and five crore.
The most bizarre rumour doing the rounds in Bhopal is that the robbery was planned by the Minister himself. According to this set of cynics, the Minister was not sure that some one in Arvind Kejriwal’s Delhi would not do a sting operation when the Minister was seen carrying suitcase/s with so much money. So he conspired with a trusted courier service to ostensibly rob the train somewhere in Uttar Pradesh and carry his money-filled suitcase/s safely to Delhi by road.
A stroke of genius. Isn’t it? I mean on the part of the rumour monger.