Tuesday, August 5, 2008

ACCOUNTABILITY OF THE EXECUTIVE

The situation in Jammu and Kashmir is going from bad to worse. Yesterday we had a curfew in all districts of the valley. This has happened for the first time after 1990. Who is to blame for this state of affairs? I would blame the executive branch of the government, starting with the Prime Minister and the Home Minister. The situation was slowly getting from bad to worse, and the politicians were playing their favourite game of politics. Politicians who occupy Cabinet positions need to rise above party politics and fulfill their constitutional responsibility. It is surprising that we have only one politician who rose above his party to protect the Constitutional responsibility of his Chair - Somnath Chatterji. Cabinet ministers are the executive arm of the government and need to ensure that the laws of the land are upheld at all times. These cabinet ministers have this responsibility to the people of this country. However, our present day politicians, barring Mr Chatterji, never seem to rise above their party politics. This creates problems for the ordinary citizens of India. The ministers firstly donot take effective action themselves. On top of that they stop the government mechanisms from taking any action - the police keep looking for directions to perform their constitutional duty. Why do we let this happen everytime? Can't we respect the chair that we occupy and do justice to it, like Mr Chatterji. Though I have a lot of respect for Dr. Manmohan Singh, I still believe that the Prime Minister is to be blamed for choosing a weak Home Minister. India, with its diversity, needs a very strong and committed Home Minister - a minister who only thinks of upholding the law at all times, irrespective of party affiliations. BJP has also come out like a villian in this case. They were once again found fanning passions, which have gone totally out of control. How can you deny supplies to parts of your own country? You donot even deny food to enemy prisoners and these are your own countrymen. This is just ridiculous. Political issues need to be sorted out politically in a civilized manner, and not by inciting ordinary citizens to break laws, block traffic, uproot railway lines and damage national assets. I do hope and pray that better sense prevails before things really go out of hand.

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