My Reply to Sanjay Kumar – Hidden Agenda
I read a preposterous article on mylaw.net by one Journalist Sanjay Kumar. The article was titled Hidden Agenda.
The article can be read here : http://mylaw.net/Article/Hidden_Agenda/
since I had some free time I wanted to reply to the said article.
Below is my reply to his article.
Whether history repeats itself is a debatable topic but, sometimes, some events remind you of moments in the past. The mood of people and their passion for fighting corruption reminds me of the Eighties and Nineties, when I was in my prime.
I don’t think the intro of your essay requires any reply. I am not aware of such movement in 80s and 90. It could have been helpful that you could have cited some links here. In fact in the entire article, it is just what you have to say and the readers are to believe it? Why? Are you not suppose to substantiate your point of view with actual facts on the grounds. I am sure the events of the 80s and 90s are documents somewhere in some book or net article that readers can read and understand the context in which you are making comments for a period of 20 years!
If there was such a movement as you say then the major difference between then and now is in my opinion is internet. In words of verappa moily, India is seeing a information revolution.
That was the time when, in the name of national interest, zealots were busy whipping up passions all across the country to build a Ram temple at Ayodhya. Anybody opposing the cause, or not supporting it, was branded anti-national; the idea was to polarise the nation on communal grounds. They succeeded and it led to the demolition of the Babri Masjid, and subsequently, riots all across India and the emergence of a personality like Narendra Modi.
Well, where do I begin? Is Ram Temple not an issue? You may have a different point of view than me and I respect that. Do you respect that I may have a different opinion? Or am I branded Communal, hindutva and Anti India ? I would not brand you anti national, and even if people did, so what? People call Sonia Gandhi Italian, People call Narendra Modi as a rioter ( as you do) So what really? We are still one nation aren’t we?
Riots created Narendra Modi? As much as emergency created Indira Gandhi? As much as the present political structure (Sonia Gandhi as chairperson NAC), perverted as it is, created a rubber stamp PM? No comments on any corruption issue by Manmohan Singh. No Comments? Where is Rahul Gandhi in all of this? And you talk of Narendra Modi? A three time elected Chief minister. (like Sheila Dixit) You could have typed about Adarsh scam or 2G Scam or mismanagement of CWG. But you choose Narendra Modi. Are you really not biased in your writing ?
One of the arguments at that time was that no institution of the government could preside over a matter of faith. Disregarding the judiciary and the democratic process of debate, the fanatical rightist mob pulled down the mosque.
Yes. But how on earth an issue of religion related to the issue of corruption? Oh wait a minute, I get it. That religion issue was by non- congress and this current issue of corruption is non-congress. 2+2=4, so this corruption thing must also be BJP.
Your logic of linking an issue of religion on the event that happened in 1992, to the present issue of corruption makes me think, well I can link almost any two things together.
Now, in the fight against corruption, the argument touted is that since the cause is so important, it does not matter how it is being achieved. A yoga guru, Ramdev, riding on the popularity gained because of his teachings, assumes a larger than life image and tries to discredit the entire political class. The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (“the RSS“), desperate to come out of it’s defeatist mind-set, backs the guru, and its political progeny, the Bharatiya Janata Party (“the BJP“) follows suit.
Where was this said “since the cause is so important, it does not matter how it is being achieved?” And what other method of achievement is there anyway? The only way a law can be made is through parliament. The problem is Parliament does not make these kind of strong laws. Because then there will be watchdog to oversee their (politicians and bureaucrats) abuse of power.
And make up your mind or at least start a new paragraph when saying diametrically opposite things. In line two you say, entire political class is being discredited. In line three you say, BJP is backing the guru. Err…. Why will BJP back the guru if he is discrediting them?
Democratically elected leaders and institutions of governance nurtured for the last sixty years are being severely questioned by self-appointed arbiters of morality and values. Their disdain for democratic ways of argument and assurance come in the way of any negotiations.
The need for a Jan Lok Pal Bill comes in because the Parliament is unable to keep a tab on itself. No one is saying the democratic value is bad. That your perverted interpretation. “self appointed arbiters of morality and value”?? The issue here is poor prosecution of the corrupt. Not morality. Not Values.
Noted columnist Pratap Bhanu Mehta says, “Civil society is, unconsciously, abetting its own brand of authoritarianism. First, the sensibility at work in this self-appointed civil society is to enhance state power. Most of them hate the one thing that has made a brighter future possible for India: liberalisation”.
Kiran Bedi is also a “noted” activist. I am sure there are differing opinions on both sides. Bhanu Mehta, whoever he is, and howsoever good he may be, is another voice with whom I disagree. These “civil activists” want India to get rid of its liberalisation? And the government agreed to the same when they set up a joint panel? Surely somewhere Anna Hazare and Co. were right?
Baba Ramdev has crossed the limits of liberalisation and is using the anti -corruption platform to promote some dangerous designs that his rightist associates nurtured. Instead of being in the forefront of the anti-corruption campaign, he has become a front for the communal forces who were gradually becoming marginalised politically.
Communal forces in India have no future. If they use Ramdev then Ramdev has no future. What dangerous demand did he put up before his fast at Ramlila. Do share. I am really curious. To the best of my understanding, the government and Ramdev reached a compromise, and then Sibal outsmarted him. Didn’t he? And who decides whether Ramdev crossed the limits of liberalization? you sir?
This design is patently clear from the kind of support and sympathy that Ramdev is getting from the RSS, the BJP, and the likes of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad. With elections in Uttar Pradesh just a year away, the rightist parties are trying to use the followers of the yoga guru to prop up their prospects in the heartland of the country. The victory in this crucial state is considered to be the key to the throne in Delhi.
UP as the heart gateway to Delhi is your Rahul baba’s dream. When something goes wrong in UP, an NHRC team is immediately dispatched. When a murder takes place in broad daylight in congress controlled Maharashtra (J Dey Murder) where is NHRC?
Is RSS, VHP or the BJP banned organizations? The entire agitation has everything to do with UP elections and nothing to do with corruption? Have you lost your marbles?
The timing of the fast-unto-death at the Ramlila
ground and the date of the National Executive meet of the BJP seem to be in tandem. Is this sheer coincidence or some co-ordinated planning to cripple governance, discredit the vulnerable ruling alliance at the centre, and create a political vacuum?
Again, let me get this right. The entire agitation is a political ploy by the BJP and Co. and it has nothing to do with the issue of corruption. Hmmm….. just one thing, why did the top leadership went to meet him at Delhi Airport? Why were there compromises/ negotiation being done with Sibal and Subodh Kant Sahay? Top congress leadership trying to pacify a BJP Crony ?
How come the Baba never talks about the blatant corruption in states such as Karnataka and Uttarakhand that are presently ruled by the BJP. Is it sheer chance that the rock star of yoga and the rabid rightist crowd hold the same opinion about the Congress and its leadership?
Indian women and children who were beaten in the middle of the night at Ramlila grounds were rightist? That BJP hates the congress has its roots in politics. Has Ramdev specifically talked about only congress ruled states corruption? Has he? I don’t think so. Do share news article if otherwise.
Just asking you sir, if I hate the congress, can it remotely (R-E-M-O-T-E-L-Y) be because of ummm…… 2G Scam, Adarsh Society Scam, CWG mismanagement, rubber Stamp PM, (I can give you a longer list, if you want). Remotely?
Remotely possible, that there is utter and genuine disgust with the congress and its leadership ?
Right from the beginning, it was clear that Ramdev’s demand for bringing back black money was childish and nonchalant, but the design that Ramdev is part of is serious. The issue of black money agitates each and every Indian and any move to address this issue will have all of India’s support. But Baba was partisan in gathering support and relied on the advice of the Sangh Parivar functionaries to mobilise public opinion. As a result, the battle against corruption has assumed secular-communal divide, thereby exposing the most fundamental fault line of Indian polity.
Bringing back black money is non-chalant and childish? The US has been able to do it, by entering into agreements with such Swiss banks. Its not childish expectation. It is possible, if there is a political will. There is none. And the reason for the same is because, the ruling class is hand in glove in corruption. To say that the expectation is childish is to say: “Well, you can stack black money abroad, and we will do nothing about it, because stopping the whole illegal practice and trying to bring the money back is “Childish””
The challenge for the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance
Government is two fold – to address the genuine concern of the people on the issue of corruption and, at the same time, stop the attempt by rightist forces to undermine the secular, democratic polity.
At the fag end of the essay, for the first time I see the real issue – corruption. If you could have given an example of, forget action, even an attempt by the government to do something about corruption, it would have sounded genuine.
Stop the rightist forces? Congress sends 5000 strong police force to stop the rightist unarmed – wait for it – Men women and children all rightist according to you. But allows poorly armed police to die at the hands of Naxals. Focusing on the wrong rightists?
The Government is to be blamed for the present mess to a great extent. It shows lacklustre commitment in fighting corruption, and when some individual or organisation starts agitating, it becomes hyperactive to the point of looking silly, as it has happened in the case of the Ramdev affair. In the Eighties and the Nineties, the Congress Government wavered in its commitment to secularism and paid the price for it when the communal elements hijacked the entire political agenda.
I have no idea of the movement in 80s and 90s, but would say this much I agree with you here.
Today, history and the Congress are facing each other again. To strengthen the credibility of the parliamentary institutions and governance, a firm action against the malaise of corruption has to be taken. At the same time, it has to make sure that secular polity does not get caught in communal fault lines.
Please don’t worry about secularism. Worry about congress losing its tag of self appointed guardian of Seculars. India was, India is and India will always be secular. Congress has nothing to do with it.
The RSS and other communal elements have always tried to piggyback on the popular movements in past. It used the J.P. movement in the Seventies to occupy the centre stage in politics, which later became the reason for its downfall. Similarly, in the late Eighties, the Hindutva group lent support to the anti-corruption movement of V.P. Singh to further its fascist agenda, and when it found that it could no longer live with the Janata Dal Government, it brought about its downfall.
The only reason, THE ONLY REASON, congress has been in power is because the opposition has never been united and strong. Now with the NDA that is not the case.
When you brand the RSS as communal, the least I can say is that you are pro-congress. Wouldn’t be surprised to read next article from you saying Rahul Baba is God’s gift to India.
Do you have any freaking idea what the Fascist theory is? Pre-NDA the opposition against the congress was always weak. Now that is not the case. Freaking you out isn’t it ?
Therefore, it’s sheer opportunism that is bringing the moribund Hindutva groups into action today. Corruption might be an issue, but the agenda is something different. In the Eighties and Nineties, the issue might have been the Babri Masjid but the agenda was quite sinister – to tear apart the secular fabric of the nation. Communal forces used the smoke of religious passion to cloud reason. Similarly, by whipping up the passion of people against corruption, the RSS and other rabble-rousers want to undermine the power of Parliament and politicians, and further their agenda.
Corruption is the issue here sir. Everything else is secondary. You are focusing away from the main issue here. Unfortunately here, you sir, and the likes of Digvijay Singh are Rabble rousers.
History, therefore, is repeating itself in a new format. Will our lessons from history be of some use?
History has repeated itself. But not in the way you have stated. It reminded many of the emergency days.