What a complete absence of Leadership was on display in the Rajya Sabha on 29/12/2011 !!! It needs to be humbly noted(and not flippantly ignored)that democracy can’t be outsourced to shouting brigades, making all kinds of faces inside the parliament and on television channels, indulging in verbal knavery and trying to ride the nation roughshod. The Indian parliamentary democracy has been ridiculed for too long: a PM not being the Leader of the House! Ministers shouting at members raising questions! CBI indulging in gross undemocratic behaviour of getting sucked into the cess pool of dirty political games rather than performing its lawful duty as prescribed by the law! Undermining the system of governance grossly, both at the state and the national level! Government running away from a voting in the House! Time doesn’t stop, but change of date was manually/technically/mechanically stopped: the House was actually adjourned on 30/12/2011, after its time for the sitting had ended on 29/12/2011, as displayed on the wall clock of the Rajya Sabha (Upper House of Parliament). No legal fiction can dispute this fact! With the highest filing false affidavits, which disqualifies them to be a member of the House and attracting criminal liability, there can be no hope for transparency in governance. When even the nationality of one or two Members had come under challenge, democracy cannot be considered safe. Those politicians and the media, who were putting pressure on Anna Hazare not to continue with his fast, should now know that the Establishment has not only shown its true colours (asli chehra) but also teeth. The moment the pressure of Civil Society released due to the ending of the Anna fast, the Evil Society was in fast mode of spoiling the efforts for the establishment of the office of an effective ombudsman or Lokpal. Let it be understood clearly that they are not the Leadership and shall never be. Leadership in India flows from sincere public service and genuine sacrifice, which is no quality of the corrupt, who have not only accumulated crores of rupees, but mostly by manipulating the law. They should not be allowed to hijack the political party or system under any circumstances. They speak an idiom, in a manner of offending sensibilities, painting the government as vindictive and generally showing immoral favours to the corrupt openly. Such riff-raff are a big liability and have repeatedly proved to be very costly for the political system (even deadly to the leader).Can such a misled and divided India face any internal or external challenges to its sovereignty? To save India from complete political chaos and governance anarchy, the politicians must devote their energies to impart the system some moral strength and political muscle. Healthy parliamentary conventions are the crying need of the hour.
Should the Presiding authority of the House not maintain objectivity and neutrality in managing the discussions in the House? Is there any evidence of it happening? Is the same charade not being repeated in State Assemblies? When the Members ask for a ruling from the Chair, can it be ignored most unethically? Conventions cannot be laid down without ethics. Unfortunately there is not only a deficit of ethics but a total famine. Not only the political class but elderly journalists laid strong claims to the cleanness of the politician. They attacked the integrity of the civil society members by making funny statements like “patriotism, honesty or sacrifice for the nation is not the sole preserve of a few laying claim to it”, as politicians too are no less than them. Above all, they asserted the grand success in getting elected to the legislatures. The Civil Society never disputed such claims. This was never the point of discussion. What was, is and shall be at the centre of public debate and dissatisfaction is corruption, especially of the political class, who control every single private activity of the individual in the guise of some or the other law, which is generally misapplied until such time as their demands for illegitimate gratification (or corruption) are satisfied. For this to happen, political Leadership in the country has to be of a very high stature not only in the ruling establishment but also opposition ranks. Is it not a travesty of fairness that the person imprisoned for corruption and on bail, sits in the House to vote for or against an effective anti-corruption authority like the Ombudsman or Lokpal? India can’t survive for long with such a distorted vision of transparent government! To save India from slipping into a non-democratic form of government, the leadership of all parties must collectively think and come out with a revival package for morality in public affairs and fair governance along with sturdy unwritten parliamentary conventions having the same force of law as they have in Britain. Otherwise, the members of the public will take no longer to act as angry as the elderly respectable members of the House in full public view of the proceedings.