Aug 27, 2011

By the way...

Just so you know...
Indian democracy is not the most unique or supreme.
If it were unique, we would have had politicians who had the country's good at heart.
If it were supreme, our elected representatives would have delivered what they were supposed to deliver- Justice, Equality and Freedom.

Strangely, the Anna movement has managed to evoke the most controversial statements/behavior with no real knowledge of what the entire circus is about.
We have common people who are largely unaware of the history of delaying tactics and obfuscation by successive governments in passing the Lokpal bill and then we have the government who admits there is rampant corruption (which is a wonderful departure from denying its existence) but desperately want to sidetrack it with irrelevant comments/suggestions.

Recently talking to a close relative, who was largely skeptical of the movement. I listened to her arguments silently before I set out to convince her.
Why now? When the Congress is ruling? Definitely the BJP is behind this.
Of course now. If not now, when? The Congress has been ruling for quite a while now. Except for a narrow break in the later part of last century, the Congress has always been at the helm of affairs. As for accusations of support from the opposition, it is anybody's guess why they would support. While they have been baying for the ruling party's blood ever since they lost their second chance, they have conveniently piggybacked on Anna. Cauterized by a bitter experience down south, they want to appear as the only party will not take corruption lightly.
After decades of corruption that has eroded the very corpus of our democracy, there is a large part of the middle class that has had enough.

Why not run for election so that Anna can make a change that way?
Appearing as it seems the gargantuan sums of money that goes into bribing million people and considering Anna's financial limitations and his character, it is anybody's guess that Anna will loose an election hands tied down. Suggesting he runs for an election is a simplistic view of people who choose to be ignorant.
The obvious result of such a failure would be an ideal excuse to not pass stricter anti corruption laws.
Do you see Red here?

Why not strengthen existing anti corruption agencies?
Not many people would know that the Lokpal Bill did create all of these agencies. Ineffective as they are with little or no right to investigate, prosecute or punish the guilty, they are but a toothless tiger and a huge drain on the exchequer. That and the fact that many of these agencies are headed by cabinet rank Ministers who will not want to prosecute their peers.
Scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.

Armchair activists like the 'one book wonder' Arundhati Roy would do better than to write an elaborate essay on why Anna is wrong. I wonder how much she got paid to write such ludicrous piece of trash. Why the (Indian) media still refers to her as 'Indian Booker prize winner..' still defies my understanding. She wrote just one book and got really lucky there. (By that measure, I must be referred to as 'English rank holder at high school') She has since decided to not test her luck anymore by staying with pro Maoist activism and random tree hugging.

Why a deadline?
A deadline works best when all you've got is a government that procrastinates, delays and manipulates thoughts, ideas and action to correct an endemic disease like Corruption. Given that the congress and like scum had roughly 45 years to pass the Lokpal bill in its true essence, I believe a deadline is what we need.
This time it's our way or the highway, Mr PM.

Why is Anna being adamant about his demands?
Well, there are only 3, for crying out loud.
The government has sat on the Lokpal bill like a hen on a hard boiled egg for far too long. They've never had the intention to pass it. Not then, not now.
It's time for some tough love.

Why the hell is he so bothered?
Most weren't. Were they?
Almost child like, he's accepted your support but never asked you for your donation. So when an illiterate former soldier and farmer fights for the freedom of a billion plus, the least you can do is support the cause that he is fighting for. After all, as Indians we belong here - In India.

But that's the problem with Indians. After having been ruled over by our colonial masters, we've been conditioned to be subservient.
We'll never give a compliment when its deserved. We'll never give a honest feedback when we have to. We're used to poor service and the tag of 'third world country'.

But just so you know, you should never give up.
Spread the word, folks. Our children will never forgive us if we don't clean up our mess.

More Read:
Arund'hate' Roy
Rather be Anna than Roy!
Messianism versus democracy

2 comments:

Kirklops said...

I agree with almost everything you say. But dismissing LK Advani's comment as irrelevant as just a delaying tactic misses one point. There are a few genuine concerns about Version 2.2 of the JLB. Here's a post listing out the ambiguous clauses which have to amended.
cyclopsincognito.blogspot.com/2011/08/separation-of-powers-vs-draft-jan.html

At the least they have to be debated in the Parliament and clarified, which is why issuing the deadline as a pressure tactic may turn out to be counterproductive in the long run. Of course, the bill should have the tooth to monitor and fight corruption. Yet, it should maintain the sanctity of the Constitution’s basic structure (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_structure) lest the teeth evolve into fangs.

Anonymous said...

Some facts about the ‘Great-Gandhian’ Hazare and related issues:
1. He was an alcoholic and once he decided to quit, he shut down all the liquor and cig shops in his village and made everyone quit forcibly.
2. When some villagers were found to be drunk they were tied to poles/pillars of the temple and punished by the violent medieval punishment of flogging, sometimes personally by Hazare (so much for non-violence)
3. Close associates of Anna Hazare have revealed that during a fast in Ralegan-Siddhi, he was given glucose and electrolyte solutions
4. He supports another ‘great’ man The one and only- Raj Thackrey and his ‘great’ activities in Maharashtra through the MNS. I dont see how any credibility is left with this Hazare character on the basis of this point alone!
5. I wish MMS would sit in a tent opposite Hazare and perform the same fast until death tamasha that is being dished out to him. This brutal blackmail wont work always.
6. Forget Hazare, people supporting him don’t even know the first thing about lokpal bill. They just want to be part of the crowd. Most people dont even know that Anna is not this guy’s first name and that Anna here is not pronounced as in anna kournikova. These are the biggest idiots and are capable alone of taking this country down.
7. We dont vote, we only whine. people who believe they can run the country better, dont want to stand in an election. Nobody wants to take responsibility, everyone wants to blackmail the government.
8. I COMPLETELY DISAGREE with the point that if there is a bribe-giver, there is someone who asks for it first. Case in point, a fine of Rs.500 is ‘adjusted’ with the traffic cop for Rs.100 by our persistent persuasion. We give huge donations for our child’s admission in a good college, the college doesn’t go door-to-door asking for bribe. Thousands of such parallels can be drawn with industrialists, businessmen and other walks of life.
9. Drunk people in Team Anna harassing policemen & media-persons are part of the whole free speech & save the democracy rant? Its funny when people who are fighting for their voices to be heard, would not let you speak if you dont agree with them.
10. Shopkeepers keep shops shut in Delhi to show solidarity with Anna. How about making pucca bills n declare true inventory instead?

Bottom Line: I am not defending any politician, party or Roy, the fact that people rant about corruption as an issue external to them is the real cause of corruption. If each individual in itself vows not to accept or offer bribe, there and then will be the biggest step in eradicating corruption, which no bill or self-proclaimed Gandhian savior will ever achieve. Identify the root cause, its you. “be the change you want to see in the world” has never been so relevant before!

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