Sunday, November 21, 2010


Lately the press, both print and TV, have been full of reports on corruption starting with the Common Wealth Games followed by the Adarsh housing, the 2G spectrum allocation, and now the Karnataka land grab by the CM and his family members. Every news is negative - at first thought it appears that our country is heading in the wrong direction. But is it? I donot believe so. Even though it is very negative and depressing news, I find it to be very heartening .

Finally the thoughts in the minds of concerned citizens, that got translated into words, and high volume and decibel ones at times - a few years ago, have now resulted in action - the usual process of first thought, then words and finally action, that has to be undertaken for any action to take place - Kalmadi, Chavan, Raja have been fired or resigned, under pressure. CM Yedyurappa had been called to Delhi; has returned the grabbed land, and is under pressure to resign. This will happen if the BJP has to continue to maintain its posturing of being anti-corruption. All these actions suggest that a new benchmark in public propriety is being set and most parties would now have to live by these norms, if they want to project an image of being clean.

This in no way means that corruption would be eliminated - it only suggests that corruption is now a major issue with our political parties. This is good news BUT only if we the people support it during our next round of elections. All those who hate corruption in public life, and there are a large number of us who are very vocally anti-corruption, will need to help in making this a larger than life election issue, in which ever way possible.  Are we anti-corruption enough??? and are we ready to put our time and effort to show how much we care for clean governance??? Let's make a start by being clean in our own dealings - it always takes two hands to clap.

The issue of corruption is akin to another major issue that has rocked our country for a number of years now - that of caste based politics  - people thought about it; complained about it, and now the election results in Bihar would go on to prove that development is now an issue, rather than caste - if Nitish Kumar's party is once again given the chance to govern Bihar - as is most probably going to be the case - going by the exit polls. This would prove to all political parties that Lalu and his brand of politics has reduced relevance in elections now, and that too in a state like Bihar. Does this bode well for development? I believe so.

Imagine how democracy is transforming our country - have faith in the wisdom of our people - they may be illiterate in the formal sense, but they are definitely not stupid - this fact was brought home to me very clearly in the 70s, when they threw out the ruling party after emergency, and brought them back to power, much sobered - after the total misgovernance by the Janata Dal government.

Think Positive about OUR hugely diverse population, democracy, and country - there is none other like this in this world and don't even try and compare it with either the developed countries, or city states like Singapore. Think about how slowly but surely it is evolving - heading in the right direction. Evolution 'of the people, by the people, and for the people' is any day a better way to move forward than Revolution, specially in such a hugely diverse 'functioning anarchy' like ours.