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Soniamania hits Akbar Road

May 20, 2004 00:13 IST

Call it emotional frenzy or the theatre of the absurd, spontaneous reaction or stage-managed show.

Only Sonia Gandhi's name echoed before her residence as hundreds of Congress activists converged today to implore her to lead the nation and rethink on her decision not to head the new government.

From nine-year-old Sadhna Bharati to ninety-year-old Sadhu Ram, from Alka Lamba to Ambika Soni -- the young, old and women descended on the road leading to Sonia's residence in droves since early morning shouting pro-Sonia and anti-NDA slogans and carrying placards pleading her to become the country's prime minister.

Anyone who spoke of her not becoming the prime minister -- whether it be a party leader or a journalist -- were roughed up mercilessly.

The victims included a 'Sahara TV' reporter who 'dared' to speculate on Manmohan Singh's name and party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar who too thought likewise.

Border Security Force personnel had to be called to protect both.

Effigies of the BJP and Sangh Parivar leaders, including Sushma Swaraj, Govindacharya and Uma Bharati were beaten up and set afire.

As television cameras zoomed, the slogan shouting reached its peak.

About 13 party leaders including former MP Satyajit Gaekwad and AICC secretary R P N Singh staged a sit-in at the gate leading to Sonia's house.

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