The developments of the last fortnight , culminating in a historic special session of the two Houses of the Indian parliament, herald a new era in governance. The hopelessness of the masses can be gauged by the powerful cries against corruption throughout India. Age, gender, creed, caste, community, region profession –no barriers, no road blocks, no dirty political stratagem of the corrupt class, could stall the march of the masses against corruption. How oppressive, how all pervading, how frustrating the rule of the corrupt is in India, is known to every citizen. Even beggars on the streets have to pay bribes if they want to practice their profession peacefully in the assigned area!
In administration, it is well nigh impossible to render honest public service. You get punished severely. There are many ways of doing harm even as it appears to be a legitimate action under the rules. Service tribunals and courts have interfered at times, but government servants quietly accept it as normal hazards of sticklers of the rules! Shunting from place to place (transfers) at regular intervals , compulsory wait or APO(awaiting posting orders), suspension, creating financial problems by delaying salary payment for non receipt of LPC(last pay certificate) from the earlier office by the latter office for months or even years, non- payment of transfer dues like travelling allowance, discrimination in promotions on the basis of cadre, caste, religion and integrity, are very effective methods of breaking down the resistance of the honest or devoted government servants. The honest breed contempt, but the dishonest children too! Since the law grants all powers to the executive, the politician dishonours, disgraces, disrespects the bureaucrat so much that even the persons of strong integrity also fall into silence. The crude, uncivilized and disrespectful treatment given by politicians, especially chief minister, minister or central ministers, such as calling them naukar or servants, reveals their casteist mindset. They think they belong to the higher caste as minister and government servants to the lowest or the shudra caste.They have betrayed this mind set again in the Anna Hazare led anti corruption movement by selectively targeting the former public servants in the Team Anna. It is admitted that all of us must observe the highest standards of speech and integrity always. But that equally applies to the Members of Parliament. Can it be said with authority that all of them observe even the minimum standards of civil speech? The public anger is against the corrupt speech and deeds of this kind of members. They are unmindful of the hurt their tongues cause when they speak in the most offending manner in which they first divide society into communities and then attacking one or the other community, their faith, practices, customs or mores, or castes or classes or the corporate or the rich or the intellectuals. They don’t spare the national icons either. They distort history. They speak threateningly, knowing that there is nobody to give a retort to them. These actions have dispirited the honest and marginalized them. A crippled administration is bound to paralyse any government. How constrained Dr MMSingh has been in the past more than 7 years can be attributed to this general administrative euthanasia and another reason.
The anarchy of the so called people’s representatives, getting elected on no more than 28% votes on average, has deliberately destroyed all the infrastructure of a well organized administrative system, a valuable gift of the British rulers in India. This damage to the system has also been caused for another nefarious reason. It is to make the masses servile again. Servile to the political class comprising the corrupt, crooked , criminal and the conmen and conwomen. The solid efforts to contain ManMohan Singh are known to the whole nation and the world. The PM had hardly asserted his desired statesmanship in parliament when the Congress made its General Secretary make an untimely statement in the parliament , meant to establish supremacy of the managers over the prime minister! Their assessment of Anna and his anti corruption movement was poor, wrong and mischievous. They failed to gauge the mood and resolve of an angry nation. But they made Rahul Gandhi a sacrificial goat only to protect their own positions of power and influence. That one statement gave the youth the impression that the Congress and Rahul are opposed to corruption. It will make things rather difficult for the young politician to realize his political ambitions, and thereafter win the trust of a nation called India. But that exactly was the objective of the advocates of corruption. In their strategy, the best move is to contain Rahul, encircle him, sell him your own ideas, keep him away from the public and rule for ever in his name. Who pays the price for such conspiracies of the royal palace? Well, who paid the price for sending the armed forces to the Golden temple or Sri Lanka?
When the nation was moving into a valuable state of harmony, petty politicians were trying to spew venom in the atmosphere. They die if India is united, they live so long as India remains divided. Some MPs have moved privilege motions against the utterances of the public in the Ramlila Maidan. It is an ill conceived motion. If they are so touchy about the public criticism, lampoon, ridicule, caricature, they are first and foremost answerable for all the abuses they had hurled against the leadership of the time when they were starting their political careers. They should first be punished for all the abuses they had hurled against Indira Gandhi and others. The parliament should reject all such motions at the admission stage itself, as the “privilege” does not extend outside the four walls of the parliament. They can earn their respect in public eyes by good conduct, not by roaring or threatening others. They have no business to deprive the ordinary citizens of any of their rights. Are the law makers entitled to use a red coloured number plate on their vehicles? Are they entitled to the use of red beckons on their vehicles? Are they entitled to keep unlicenced armed guards as their personal protection group? They owe an apology to the nation for such instances of breach of the law before they even think of moving a breach of privilege motion. These MPs should not consider themselves the Maharajas or Nizams or Nawabs , who were given these special privileges under the constitution on the basis of the treaties of accession to the union of India signed by them. The Maharajas ceded their territory to the union of India. What have these MPs done? They have rigged the system to acquire all the valuable property of the nation illegally ! And they demand privilege from the people? They incite violence by their provocative speeches but want to punish the common man for his/her anger by terming it provocative? The corrupt politician in India survives on a healthy diet of perversion of the law. It was August 27, 2011 that saw a glimpse of the glory of democracy, it was yesterday that the people saw a flickering glimpse of the magnanimity of the parliament, it was yesterday again that the parliament presented to the people the respectable side of itself, effectively stamping out the undemocratic rabble rousers as the face of the parliament of India.The venomous were pathetically isolated and made a very poor show. They had no other option but to support the resolution. Hope Anna will change their minds forever, even if they failed to learn from Gandhi. I have written in my book on this site that India cannot be ruled otherwise than the Gandhian ideology. This freedom is for all of us and not for the few. Becoming an MP doesn’t make you a Maharaja.
The civil society will have to display greater responsibility hereafter. Anna’s movement was apolitical. His sacrifices are for the whole nation. Extreme caution will be required to be exercised by the civil society. No political speeches should be allowed to promote or target one or the other party. Similarly the decency and decorum of speech will need to be maintained, for the success of the movement and also guidance of the new generation. We must strive our best to maintain the highest standards of speech and integrity.
Anna has shown the light. He has reminded the whole nation of the greatness of our freedom fighters and their strengths and sacrifices. He has re-ignited the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi in a nation being eaten away by corruption. It will make India a very strong and prosperous nation. The success of this movement will influence not only our immediate neighbourhood but many other countries in the world. We truly become a part of the Global Village!