Without much fanfare or fuss, Yashodhara Raje -- who is referred to Mahant and lives in the part of the Jai Vilas Palace called Rani Mahal while she is in Gwalior -- props her sunglasses on her head, adjusts her pallu and launches her impassioned speech, almost becoming another person in front of the microphone.
"Mere namaskar sweekar ki jiye (accept my greetings)," she says, joining her palms high above her head in a regal, authoritative namaste.
"I, Yashodhara Raje stand before you as a prateek (symbol) of Shivraj Chauhan, of Atalji (Bihari Vajpayee), of the BJP. This election is not about a hand pump or local issue, this election is about determining the course of this nation -- about who will lead this country," she says to the villagers of a hamlet, 45 kilometres away from the highway connecting Gwalior to Guna, the seat represented by her mother for most of her political life.
Rajmata Scindia had wanted Yashodhara to inherit the Guna seat, but her candidature was rejected in the 1996 election which she suspects was due to foul play.
"Fortunately, my mother fought that election and won. Then my brother stood from Guna in the 1999 election. I got the Gwalior seat in 2007."
Her brother won Guna handsomely for the Congress till his tragic death in September 2001. After him, his son Jyotiraditya stormed the family bastion by a margin of 450,000 votes and is seeking a third re-election.
"Though I really wasn't with my brother in the last 20 years because I was in America, he was a great personality and good fun. When I come to Gwalior the first thing I do is to go and see my mother at the chhatri (family memorial) and then my brother. And it is always the same question I ask when I see his picture with the flowers -- Why? He was so young. He was almost as old as me when he died."
A dignified divide has kept the Scindias from crossing each other's electoral path. Aunt and nephew represent rival parties, but have kept away from ignoble confrontations in the politics of Gwalior-Guna.
"He (Jyotiraditya) didn't stay on that side this time. He came into my constituency and took sabhas (meetings) against me. He has broken that line. I am very hurt. Nothing is do or die in life. Nothing is as important as family."
Image: There is a lot of her mother in Yashodhara Raje; the easy charisma, the deft popular touch.
Also see: 'Here, glamour is politics' | India Votes 2009