Papas and PAPA

In January 2010, the Peoples' Alliance for Peace Agreement (PAPA) was formed by 56 front organisations of political parties of central Assam's Karbi Anglong hill district to pressurise the government into an early and honourable peace accord with the insurgent outfit United People's Democratic Solidarity (UPDS).

The PAPA has backed independent candidates under its banner in all the four constituencies of the hill district. Known for his poll rhetoric, Assam Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma recently urged voters to reject PAPA and vote for the Congress candidate at an election rally: “What will PAPA give to the people? Instead of giving, it is only seeking from the government. It is only the Papa of Karbi Anglong. But Dr. Manmohan Singh is the Papa of the entire country and Mr. Tarun Gogoi is the Papa of Assam. As we already have two good Papas…we do not need PAPA.”

Toon tamasha

The latest tactic that the Trinamool Congress has adopted to take digs at the Left Front's “success stories” in West Bengal is a series of cartoons poking fun at Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.

The cartoons feature on the Trinamool Congress' official website,

Mocking the State government's trademark advertisements, Amar Sarkar Amar Pashe (My government is by my side), the cartoons have funny one-liners and depict Mr. Bhattacharjee as a “failure” in all spheres.

One cartoon shows him holding an olive branch and riding a plough that is being pulled by a frail farmer, while another has him holding a student by the tongue. Yet another cartoon shows Mr. Bhattacharjee inspecting a crucified patient with a stethoscope.

Packing a punch

The elections in Tamil Nadu have thrown up an eclectic variety of campaign one-liners (or 'punch dialogues' as they are locally known). Here are some, ranging from vintage expressions to the mundane, lest our political masters should forget their usage in the heat of the battle:

*Arasiyalil nirandhra nambanum illai; edhiriyum illai (in politics there is no permanent friend or foe). One leader, however, characterised the same in not so literary style - he called it kurangupol thaavudhal (siwtching sides like a monkey).

*Marappom, mannippom (Forget and forgive) - best used in the post-election scenario.

* Ottum illai; uravum illai (No ties, no kinship)

*Arasiyal vazhkkai kelvikuriyagividum (Political life will become a question mark)

*Jananayagathin kuralvalayay nerikkadheer (Don't strangulate democracy)

*Aappasaiatha kurangu (Monkey caught in a cleft) - this expression was cleverly used by a top leader when his opponents were stuck in a uncomfortable situation.

*In this election, most of the freebie-promising manifestoes have earned the sobriquet of Ee adichan kaappi (Totally copied).

(Contributed by Sushanta Talukdar, Raktima Bose and G. Sathyamoorthi)

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