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Challenges Before India

The obduracy of the media in carrying on the tirade against the Indian Chief of the Army, Gen V K Singh, indicates to the challenges before the nation from the market forces. 

These forces have made significant gains by first demolishing the political class. Today, politicians in India are considered corrupt, criminal,selfish and even characterless. They have been made and also painted as Devils and Demons. India started in 1947 with politicians of the calibre of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawahar Lal Nehru, Dr Rajendra Prasad  and Dr Sarvapalli Radhakrishanan and a whole galaxy of highly respectable men & women. People were justified in shifting their loyalties from the old order of the Maharajas & Nawabs to the new order of the political leaders of democratic India.. In less than 2 decades, however, their faith was shaken. The political class was fast losing public loyalty. By 1964, Nehru, the then Prime Minister, was compelled to cleanse the political order of the corrupt elements. The Kamraj Plan was put into effect, which meant some politicians with considerable following but ill reputation on integrity scale, had to be defrocked.They lost position in the party or the government and also consequential power. As the political class had tasted power by now, struggle for power began after the implementation of the Kamraj plan, first covertly. 1965 saw a full fledged war between India and Pakistan; 1966 was the year of death of India’s most loved Prime Minister after Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri and 1969 was the year of the death of Congress & the birth of Congress  (I). It meant in less than 6 years, India witnessed several upheavals in political, defence, economic and moral spheres.It did not occur at that time that it will change the course of history forever. The decline of political integrity since 1969 was the first great victory of the market forces.It acquired full blown stature when mass bribing of the voters and the sale & purchase of the elected members of Legislative Assemblies & the Parliament became common practices. It is summed up in local political jargon as “aayaa Ram, Gayaa Ram” culture or the revolving door policy of most of the independent or unpersuaded members of the legislatures, who were available to cast their vote for government formation to the single largest party in a fractured mandate house, because the people have not chosen a party to rule the state or the nation.Since 1967 till the present day, the quality and integrity of the political class has only seen consistent decline beyond any repair ever. It has direct impact on democracy. It is commonly heard that the British Prime Minister Churchill was not wrong when he called the Indian political class as “men of straw”.Today many political leaders are in jail for economic and other crimes. Can India rebuild the reputation of its political class in the near future? Is the future of India and Indians safe & secure in the hands of these leaders? Anybody wishing to destroy independence of nations, can do so easily if it succeeds in robbing the political class of the faith of the people in its leaders.What can be read in the spontaneous support to Anna Hazare led movement for a Lokpal Bill exactly a year ago? A resounding no confidence motion against the whole political class. There is no change in this perception.

There is another bulwark that needs to be demolished for impaling the independence of nations.It is the administrative infrastructure. It is the steel frame of any strong nation.India had such a steel frame till about 1974, even though it had started rusting a few years earlier.1975 is the year when Emergency was imposed on India by Indira Gandhi. It meant suspension of the rule of law, fundamental rights and dark days for a democratic set up.This period saw many civil servants throwing all norms of official dignity out of the window to further their career, while others were made to surrender to all kinds of illegitimate demands of a coterie of Indira Gandhi for fear of their careers.Not many believed that it was the end of democracy in India. In fact, the objective viewers could see the end of Indira Gandhi soon. It was not long before there was a regime change in 1977 General Elections.It was no happy news to the market forces, since most of the members of the new government were vocal enemies of corruption or at least professed to be so.They were not skilled in making use of the influence and capabilities of the well oiled machinery of the market forces for setting up regimes or ousting regimes.The failure of the alternative to Indira Gandhi or the Congress, revived its fortunes. She made a come back in 1980. Here onward the market forces started attacking civil servants of proven probity on individual basis.Any officer, who tried to stand in the way of the operations of the market forces, was punished softly and/ or hardly. Soft punishment was transfer, suspension, forced leave, harassment in various forms and hard punishment was assault, vilification, vigilance or denial of legitimate advancement in service.It has become so common now, that the civil and police services have simply become slaves to the dictates of the political executive and class. The indignities they suffer at the hands of politicians from all shades of political ideology can be appreciated only by those who face them.The result is bartering away public interest for pandering personal interests. All horrendous scams like CWG, 2G, Adarsh I & II,S Band,coalgate etc bear testimony to the decline in ethical standards of the bureaucracy. They are addressed as Babu, meaning only a clerk but conveying utter contempt. This is what they have been reduced to: servility, scorn and contempt. If any one dares stand to up to the market forces, he is arraigned as the Comptroller General of India, who has exposed all these scams in the past 3 years. The market forces and their patrons in the Members of Parliament and State Legislative Assemblies not only bay for his blood but secretly seek his head. Since it is the realm of public accounts, they seek his head in more sophisticated ways rather than direct.

However, in respect of the Army Chief, they are direct. Even those Members of Parliament, who are being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI) for disproportionate assets(DA) case (euphemism for corruption case), are asking for removal of the army chief. They have been carrying their tirade for many months.Arms business from India runs into hundreds of billions of dollars.Market forces have developed a secure system of eat and let eat. It has been going on for long. In fact, they assert, that it has been going on since Nehru’s time, meaning thereby that even the honest Nehru could not stop it.They are angry that a military Gen has chosen to stand in their way. With the help of friendly media, they are attacking the Army Chief. The Indian Express refuses to mend ways and doggedly goes on inventing new allegations in the hope that something is bound to stick. In any case, the best way of destroying an enemy is to make him controversial. That exactly is what the newspaper is doing and others are doing by holding debates on what this paper says. Had India the laws to discipline such rogue media like Rupert Murdoch was subjected to, the media here also would have learnt some lessons.The Constitution of India, which grants a fundamental right to freedom of speech & expression also qualifies it by laying down under the same article that reasonable restrictions may be placed on this fundamental right in public or national interest. After destruction of the political class and demolition of the bureaucracy, the last bastion to be crushed is the army of a nation to buy its independence even though it might look to be a free country. That exactly is the game of the market forces, for whom India is nothing more than a big market. They want India only to serve their economic and geo-political interests.That India has refused to do so far. So when the attempts to weaken the military from within reached a certain point, these forces dreamt of attacking the Chief of the Army, who refused to play ball and posed a real threat to their interests.The audacity, nonchalance and flippancy of the market forces are indicative of its self belief in its success with as much ease as in the case of the political and bureaucratic class. Alas! They made a mistake here. The military might be infected by the viral of corruption, but it is different from others because of its DNA, composition, training and exclusivity. The politician has been trying to make it as subservient as the civil or police services, but has failed to do so far. The firm and decisive steps taken by the Army Chief has made even a soft politician like Manmohan Singh and AKAntony also to be assertive.Even the crookedest of crooks makes some mistake and that exactly is what the market forces have done here. They miscalculated on the strength of non governance of the past 8 years and devaluation of the office of the Prime Minister. They were sure of their success. Indian Express too lived in that make believe world. In the process, it has compromised its reputation for ever. 

It is now for the government and the civil society to put in place adequate provisions to deal with rogue media indulging in disinformation and getting paid for anti-national activities of dangerous lobbies.

The government can not fail the people. The bumper crop is awaiting scientific storage. This is the problem it has been facing all these years, but has not made arrangements for warehousing. It results in the grains lying in the open and getting soaked in rains and then rotting. That is the worst kind of crime against the people. Again the market forces are behind it. It will be real shame if India says it can’t build adequate warehousing for the crops. It should not take more than 10 days for the government to build that kind of a capacity when India is among the few technologically rich nations. We have the know-how, manpower and materials. We only lack will power, which is subject to the approval of the market forces. It is no use applauding China for building a stadium in 7 days or America for announcing a booty on an international terrorist. We need to do some things ourselves.The people have to protect, preserve and strengthen their democracy and the republic!

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