sp bjp hema malini akhilesh yadav mathura violence clashes baba bose sena
The insensitivity nature of two prominent politicians - Uttar Pradesh CM Akhilesh Yadav (L) and BJP MP from Mathura Hema Malini was highlighted on both mainstream and social media. Akhilesh Yadav, then chief minister-designate of Uttar Pradesh, at party headquarters in Lucknow, March 10, 2012. Hema Malini smiles as she sports a hat made of gold at a gold jewellery launch in New Delhi, October 4, 2005 (Representational images).Reuters file

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and BJP MP Hema Malini were not fiddling when Mathura was burning. However, their responses to the violent clash between a group of heavily-armed protesters and state policemen on Thursday leading to the death of 24 people, including two senior police officers, reminded people of Nero's infamous act of fiddling when Rome was burning.

The difference being that both Yadav and Hema Malini were either tweeting or otherwise busy when the temple town was witnessing a deadly clash.

Hema Malini was trolled after she posted pictures from Mumbai on Friday morning of an upcoming film's location on Twitter. A sharp backlash on the micro-blogging site forced her to delete the tweets but not before news agency ANI could spot it.

In state capital Lucknow, Yadav was busy "selling his vision" to envoys of nine countries on Thursday. With the state going to polls early next year, positioning was high on his mind, according to News18 report.

This was even as Mathura, which is about 400 km from Lucknow, was burning due to the clashes between rifle and sword-wielding protesters numbering about 3,000 and policemen who had gone to evict them in compliance with an Allahabad High Court order. The violence resulted in the deaths of 24 people. The protesters claimed they are followers of a godman, Baba Jai Gurudev.

Far from taking responsibility, Yadav blamed the police for embarking on the mission without adequate preparation. 

"A chook (mistake) has happened, the mistake was the police went without full preparation. There was so much danger involved. No one knew how many explosives were inside" (the illegally occupied park)," NDTV quoted him as saying.

On the other hand, Hema Malini embarassed herself and her party with her insensitive and ignorant response to the incident as late as Friday morning. News agency ANI recalled a series of tweets she had posted. 

"I was pleasantly surprised to see a vast change ths time thks to Shri Gopal Shetty. The pathways leading to the boat in Versova are smooth." 

"The journey to Madh Island used to be tedious those days.It used to be a 2 hr journey by road or by ferry the approach to which was horrible." 

"Shooting at Madh island for Ek Thi Rani-a film based on the life of HH Vijaya Raje Scindia revived after many years.I play the title role."

Hema Malini later made up for her goof-up by posting a series of tweets, paying condolences to the two police officers and praying for calm and peace.