Rahul da Cunha: How I helped my namesake

Updated: 24 December, 2017 07:29 IST | Rahul Da Cunha | Mumbai

So I have a philosophy that I abide by  everyone who has the same name is connected, and, therefore, should help one other

So I have a philosophy that I abide by  everyone who has the same name is connected, and, therefore, should help one other. So, for instance, all Donalds are one, be it Donald Trump or Donald Duck. (Okay, maybe there is only one Arnab, but you get my point.)

Therefore, all Rahuls are unified and must assist each other in life. Like, no one knows that I was the chief arranger/sound engineer/playback singer for a lot of Rahul Dev (RD) Burman's compositions. I sang in the duet 'Jaane ja, doondhta hi rahaa', not Kishoreda. You can hear my harmonies in 'Aaja aha aaja', and I sang 'Mehbooba o Mehbooba' (not RD Burman). Pretty cool, huh?

Illustration/Uday Mohite
Illustration/Uday Mohite

They say that behind every successful Rahul is another Rahul. And so, it is for Mr. Rahul Dravid. I don't wish to sound immodest, but I was his silent, unassuming coach through all his playing years. What Ramakant Achrekar was for Sachin, I was for The Wall. Now, I advise him on all his Under-19 selections. Take the present team. I am helping KL Rahul in his planning ahead of the South Africa tour.

And so, since my advice extends across all professions, how can I avoid Indian politics and the new Congress president, Shri Rahul Gandhi - the man, who till recently, was made fun of with brutal memes and Whatsapp jokes, but now has found a social media profile, and crucially, a 'voice'? Does anyone make fun of him anymore? Does anyone refer to him as 'Pappu'?

You see, I am the person, who, as his image advisor, changed all that. How did that happen? Let me tell you, it had nothing to do with Hardik Patel, but Rahul Hiralal Muljilal Patel (yeah, dear reader that's moi, from my mother's side). One day, a few months ago, Rahul Gandhi came to me and asked, "Rahul dude, why am I bu** of the nation's jokes?"

I answered, "Because, Rahul bro, you are misinterpreting the meaning of our name. Rahul literally means the conqueror of miseries. Conqueror of miseries means you want to relieve the poor farmers of India of their problems, not conquer their misery with humour because of your faux pas and stupidity. Right now they're cracking up with every comment you make. From the bankers in Baroda to the small traders in Surat, everyone will laugh at Pappu jokes if we don't do something quickly before the Gujarat elections. Every joke at your expense is a joke at every Rahul's expense. Samjhe?"

"What about the fact that Rahul also means offspring of lightning?" "Uhm Rahul... may be your parents are lightning, but you, my friend, are not even a small rumble of thunder." Yesterday, a newly confident Rahul Gandhi came to me and said, "Rahul, there is a new meaning of Rahul that emerged earlier this week." "What is it?," I asked fascinated. "Rahul also means, 'The telecom scam that never happened'."

Rahul da Cunha is an adman, theatre director/playwright, photographer and traveller. Reach him at rahuldacunha62@gmail.com

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First Published: 24 December, 2017 06:18 IST

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