Kalvakuntla Kavita, The journey of a woman MP
A tough politician, a proud Telangana bidda, a caring daughter and a loving mother, TRS MP Ms Kalvakuntla Kavita has more to her than meets the eye. Calling herself a pampered “Papa ki Beti”, during a chat with the Deccan Chronicle, she reinstated that politics is not a part-time profession.
KCR the CM and KCR the dad
He is the most wonderful person on the face of the Earth. He is amazing and jovial unlike what is portrayed, and he is very easy going, calm and cool. He doesn’t directly praise like typical, orthodox fathers, but puts it in such a weird way that I don’t know if he is praising me or not. I get away with a lot of things and sometimes as a kid, I used to even cover up for my brother’s mischief. My dad is a very adamant person and he will do what he thinks is right. He has proved himself beyond a point and I am an ardent papa ki beti and will always argue with people on how he is right. I believe him and will stand by him. One should be a Hitler sometimes to get things done. I think the strict approach is required as the system is messed up.
Being a CM’s daughter
Being a chief minister’s daughter has more disadvantages than advantages. All this while, not many people knew me. And now suddenly, so many approach you and talk to you and I wonder where all these people were. The scariest part is that you don’t know if the person talking to you is serious. But I am strict and serious and will stick with people who were with me in my bad times. There are no advantages at all.
Juggling between politics and family
It’s my conscious decision today for being a part of such a busy life and I need to get things right instead of stressing out. Being a modern woman, I compartmentalise my life very well and I manage my time also very well. I discussed this with my husband and in-laws that they wouldn’t get any time. I prepared them and made them understand how life would be. They understand me, except for my sons as they are too young. I miss them and they miss me too. I try to make up as much as possible and sometimes I spoil them. I feel guilty when I am away, but I sit with them and make them understand about my work. When they understand and respect your work, life becomes easier. I am already dealing with three boys, including my husband. It is amazing as I go home and my younger son addresses me in the Telangana slang, and I forget all my tensions. It feels like heaven.
Politics, the family business
All of us breathe, eat and drink politics. We always disagree each other’s views. I am the one who is very vocal and we have arguments like every parent and kid. Sometimes, my dad tells me I don’t know stuff and I go like, “yeah, right.”
One day as the CM
If I was the chief minister for one day, I would appoint a woman inspector in every center and also appoint more women police overall. It is very sad that no matter what happens, nothing is done for women. Women politicians, after coming to power, don’t do anything for women and I have consciously refrained from making a few comments as well as I am seen as an overall leader and not just a woman leader.”
Advice to young girls in politics
Do your homework as whenever you get into a party, people will take you for a ride. When you know you have your stuff right and when you make sense when you speak, people will shut up. Many don’t do their homework and don’t speak sense and go back. They blame this on the politicians and say that we don’t give them a chance. We run a party and it is difficult to find hardworking people. Many are part time politicians with one leg in business and one leg in politics. I have seen my father who has been through good, bad and rough patches in life. But he never did any business except politics and only drew salary as an MLA. I quit business and came into politics. My dad’s experience definitely helps me, but if you don’t perform, people will vote you out.
Choosing Centre over the state
Centre is better in a way as you can give your inputs for policy making, whereas state is more of implementation. Parlia-ment offers greater, wider spectrum of issues to work on and I don?t want to restrict myself only to Telangana. Though development of Telangana is my ultimate view, I want to work on other issues as well.
There are a lot of friends. Supriya Sule, Anupriya Patil and many senior BJP MPs come up to me and tell me that I am active and I speak up. My oratory skills are my hard work. After becoming an MP, I consciously rehearse and tweak my speech a lot. I am on record and I must be careful. I have always wanted
to be a Parliamentarian.