Monday, August 29, 2011

A single man brought the Govt. on its knees

The debate in the Lok Sabha on Anna Hazare's Lokpal Bill saw many interesting features and and points of view projected by the Members. Hon. Pranab Mukerjee who is a seasoned parliamentarian and trouble shooter gave a poor reflection of himself when he echoed the words of Rahul Gandhi that " A single , however strong and empowered it may be cannot eradicate corruption" On the contrary he had seen the extra-ordinary strength of a powerless single individual who brought the powerful Government to its knees for his honest and just demand. Pranab DA should have quoted him rather than Rahul who is no match to his knowledge, experience and wisdom. The mere fact that a coterie of dynastic supporters are projecting Rahul Gandhi as the future Prime Minister does not in any way mitigates the popular aspirations of the people to see him on the Prime Minister's seat.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Historic Non-violent Movement

It is for the first time in the history of independent India that a mass movement on an unprecedented scale against corruption was conducted by a social worker Anna Hazare throughout the country in a non-violent Gandhian style. Not a single case of violence was reported from any part of the country where large scale demonstrations were held and participated by young and old persons voluntarily. The other remarkable feature of this public crusade was apolitical nature. In fact the politicians who wanted to take advantage of the situation were kept at bay and in some cases shooed away. The result of this agitation is for every body to see that public might is greater than the power of politics. This has set an example to emulate before the world that people can bend the mightiest force without violent means.

2. The Government has agreed in principle to consider the suggestions made for the institution of Lokpal which will undergo procedural scrutiny within the framework of democratic constitution of the country. There are expressions of doubts and apprehensions in some quarters whether such procedural dilatory tactics will allow the Bill to emerge for enactment has happened in previous 9 attempts. It should, however, be clear to the legislatures that times have changed and people are now determined to seek effective measures against the cancer of corruption.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Breach of Trust

The entire nation has been virtually at standstill for the last two weeks following the spat between team Anna Hazare and the Government on the question of Jan Lokkpal Bill to combat the menace of corruption in the country. The entire nation has been backing this movement irrespective of their political affiliation, caste or creed because all are victims of this scourge in their day to day life. Since 16th August when Anna underwent fast there have been series of parleys between the Anna's team and the government emissaries about the fine prints of the proposed Bill as Government publicly accepted all the suggestions made by Anna Hazare about the contents and the structure of Lokpal. Even the Prime Minister conceded in Lok Sabha about the need for a strong and effective institution in this regard and assured about the introduction of Jan Lok pal Bill in the current session of Parliament.

2. Strangely, when the entire nation was anxiously awaiting the introduction of the proposed Bill and breaking the fast by Anna Hazare, Rahul Gandhi made a complete somersault in his speech in Parliament which obviously had the approval of the Government and Congress party. This action has completely shattered the hopes of people and lowered the image and credibility of the Government. Why Rahul Gandhi was in a silent mode when the establishment was daily engaged in discussions on the issue. The suggestion for a statutory body could have been made right in the beginning and ground work started or it could follow after the present problem had been solved. It is a belated and unwise attempt which will not go down well.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Let us not play politics with Sports

It is but natural that when a country's sports team is defeated in an international match there is a cause for disappointment and some times anger. The same is true for our team's performance in England. It is,however, unfortunate that we have started taking Cricket game as a business or a battle squad rather than as a sport. In every game one side wins and the other looses. The euphoria generated following the performance in U.K. is unwanted and unfair. It was the same team that had won the World Cup a few months ago creating a history of sorts in Cricket world . The entire nations celebrated the event in an unprecedented scale. One should not expect the same results in the game every time and we should shun jingoism from sports. It is for the sportsmen and concerned authorities to go into the causes for winning and losing. The public should enjoy the games and not demoralise the players.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Corruption & Politics

The civil society's project which began on a limited issue of drafting a Bill for setting an institution to contain all pervasive corruption in the country has assumed diverse dimensions. Neither the Government nor the Civil rights activist had in their wildest dreams imagined that it will assume the form of an unprecedented mass national movement. It is indicative of the extent of public anguish and frustration with the prevailing corruption in the country. People of all walks of life rich, poor,workers,professionals ,politicians of all hues and intellectuals have come out voluntarily to support the cause. Most of the people have little concern or knowledge about the drafts for Lokpal bills proposed by Anna Hazare or Government but they want corruption to be wiped out. That is the crux of the matter for the public at large and they want early solutions.

2. When this mass movement is at its zenith and hopefully some concrete measures are likely to emerge, political parties are flexing their muscles to weaken it by adopting divisive strategies. Udit Narayan is bringing in Cast politics on the grounds that Scheduled Caste groups were not associated while drafting the proposed Bill. One may ask the ask the question whether scheduled caste people are not affected by the prevailing corruption. Similarly, Zafar Jilani is giving a divisive communal colour to the agitation by objecting to slogans "Bharat Mata-ki-Jai" and national anthem "Bande Matram". This anti national stance is condemnable in secular India. Tomorrow some unsound fanatic will object to "Allah-h0-Akbar". Let us keep this movement apolitical, secular and meaningful.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A confused Govt. & determined Anna Hazare

The flip flop actions and provocative statements made by the members of UPA Government and spokes persons of the ruling party while dealing with Anna Hazare has not only lowered its image world wide but also lost the confidence of masses in the country. The surge of public sentiment against the Government and in favour of Anna movement has largely been contributed by the Government itself. First the Government gave a VIP treatment to the members of Civil Society and spent a number of days in confabulations for drafting the proposed Lokpal Bill and when there were differences of opinion, they began a tirade of personal invectives and uncivilised mouthfuls against Anna and his team members. At that time they did not consider is necessary to involve the opposition in the drafting of the proposed Bill which is a democratic process.

2. Now they are in a reverse gear mode. Anna was corrupt yesterday and he is Gandhian today. He was arrested in the morning and released in the evening. A number of conditions were imposed upon him for holding his rally which have now been withdrawn. This indicates the indecisiveness and nervousness in the Government which appears to have lost the right to rule. The spontaneous mass upsurge of population in favour of Anna is a reminder of JP movement of 1977 which galvanised the people against misrule of Indira Gandhi. Are we heading in the same directions? It is also pertinent to point out that majority of the people who have joined this agitation do not know about Lokpal Bill. They consider it to be a movement against prevailing corruption at all levels in the country by which every citizen is adversely affected in his day to day life. The claim of Government that Lokpal will not be able to end corruption is an honest statement. How can you route out the wild hedges that you have been irrigating for the past 64 years.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Riots in U.K. more an economic issue than a Law & Order situation

There is criticism in U.K. about the soft approach of the authorities in dealing with the rioters in London and else where.No doubt It is the duty of the Government to maintain law and order and to punish the guilty.However,no amount of state force can control the underlying and simmering discontent of a deprived society for long although it may temporarily appear to have curbed it. The main cause of this sudden outburst leading to looting and arson is the huge economic disparities between the haves and have nots. Unfortunately, the gap is growing at enormous pace in all the free economies of the world and India is no exception.

2. We have to view this situation from national perspective and take urgent steps to review the required social and economic steps. In fact we are already facing this situation in the Mao infested States where we have not been able to nip this menace through the use of force. The spate of criminal activities in the form of kidnappings for ransom, extortions and robberies etc. are indicators of economic mis-match between the rich and poor. To add fuel to the fire the ever soaring inflation and high cost of essential food articles is contributing to the social divide.

Afzal Guru deserves quick hanging- Not publicity

The publicity being given to the Ministry of Home's recommendation on Afzal Guru's mercy petition both by print and electronic media is uncalled for and detrimental to the judicial process. It had already assumed political connotations and a shuttle cock match between the Government and Opposition and had been lingering for years. Are we trying to make hero of a criminal who has been sentenced to death by the due process of law of a democratic country? The separatists and terrorist organisations in J&K have openly challenged the judgement and decisions on mercy petition and are threatening to disturb peace and tranquility in the State. These anti national people cannot be allowed to challenge our democratic institutions and procedures. Will they also behave in the same manner in the case of Kasab who has also been sentenced to death for similar offence? They should be made to imagine the type of fate these terrorists would have met in the countries who follow the Sharia laws. In any case the Media should exercise restraint in this case as they do so for many condemned convicts.