The importance of being Mallika Sarabhai

By Sandip Roy

I have met Mallika Sarabhai but I don’t know Mallika Sarabhai.

I don’t know if she is speaking the truth when she says Narendra Modi tried to bribe her lawyers to “dilute” the cases she had filed against his government.

I don’t know what really went down in the illegal immigration/visa racket that her dance troupe was embroiled in a few years ago.

I don’t know if she truly cares about the poor she fed during Modi’s upwaas or this was as much a publicity “circus” as his own fast.

You can’t accuse Sarabhai of being populist. AFP Photo

Now the online chatterati are busy tearing her apart for having the temerity to challenge the Mighty Modi. She should stick to her dance, they say, not try and become Ahmedabad’s Arundhati Roy.

And as evidence of her untrustworthy character, they offer these nuggets. Just look at her views, they say.

On marriage. “For some of us, marriage definitely is an outdated institution,” Sarabhai has said. Sarabhai is divorced.

On her daughter coming out as gay. “I have no problem in accepting it at all,” she declared. And then, even more shockingly, “I have had gay friends over the years.”

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