Archive for April, 2013

‘To be or not to be’

To be or not to be
There is speculation among the Congress if Rahul Gandhi would be the next Prime Minister candidate. While the young congress MPs think and say that Rahul Gandhi would lead them for the 2014 election- Manmohan Singh is neither in nor out for seeking his third term. It is all one big confusion .Listening to the address of Rahul Gandhi to the Confederation of Indian Industries(CII) one wonders what he really wants. His was a soliloquy with the ‘you guys’ as audience. He admits that all the talk about his becoming PM is all smoke. He continues in this vein that it was an accident of fate that he is in politics-while his brother-in-law Robert Vadra had stated that politics is the family’s business.
Is Rahul Gandhi really serious of what he says? For example he is against power all centralized-wants power to the one billion people or at least to the prathans! But then who centralized all the power? Why is his mother the unconstitutional head of the government? Why had he accepted to become first the General Secretary of the Congress and then its Vice President? Was it an accident of fate or was it his ‘DNA”linkage with a particular family. It was easy talk but all his actions prove otherwise. For example if his sister Priyanka Gandhi travels the roads are cleared-it is a sign of power and prestige. Robert Vadra is not even an MP but he is exempted from security checks in the airports-Even former President Abdul Kalam had to go through security check.Why this exemption for Robert Vadra? These may be easy to abolish but will go a long way to prove that Rahul Gandhi wants to ‘empower’ others and not be powered .He and his family enjoy all the trappings of the First Family. Why such a position in a democracy.
Rahul Gandhi talks of democracy but his actions are far from it. He first saw two Indias and that idea did not work out in UP because the electorate is not stupid. It knows that the Congress was in power for 53 years so the making of these two Indias must be ascribed to it.Is it small wonder that the Congress lost its deposit in 221 out of 243 seats? That’s a damn disgrace. Had it been some other party the media would have gone after those parties and shamed it. But when it came to the Congress’s disgraceful verdict the media went soft.
Talking of the media look how it has projected the talk of Rahul Gandhi to the CII.It was all smoke and it disappeared as quickly as smoke.Was there one concrete suggestion?He talked of compassion.This is a typical patronizing attitude. There was no talk of JUSTICE for all.There was no mention of corruption and of course there was no economic policy unveiled-no worry about scams. It is frightening to think that RG is even suggested as a Prime ministerial material. What is the material that the Congress can boast of?
One author compares him with Modi.For one thing comparisons are always unethical because each person is unique in his or her own way. And to say that RG is cheese and Modi is chalk is far from truth. We need strong and principled and confident person to lead India. The person should know India and not think that it is a beehive. Modi came the hard way-worked his way up and he has determination-He does not have that DNA which links him to a particular family. What do we know of RG? He has been an MP now for ten years and it will be educative to analyze his utterances. When a problem arises he disappears. He has no opinion on any substantive issue.He has nothing to say on inflation .He has his famous ‘inclusive’development.It is this ‘inclusive development that enabled Modi to become the Chief minister of Gujarat.Unlike Rahul Gamdhi whose ‘family links’ made him what he is.
How easily Dileep Padgaonkar( in his article in the TOI 6th April)claims that RG is shy while Modi is arrogant. To know one’s business of governance and be sure and confident is not arrogance. But to be uncertain of things and bankrupt of ideas is not shyness. Look at what Dileep Padgaonkar writes in his article while comparing the two., “One is authoritative,stern,pugnacious,decisive and domineering;the other is modest,sober,hestitant and above all eager to play the good Samaritan”If one has to look for a PM material one should be decisive, stern, authoritative and domineering. These are qualities of a leader and good leadership will contour these.But RG has none of the qualities of leadership. He has been propelled to where he is. He is sober and hesitant because he is unsure of himself-his ideas and what he has to do. He does not have a clear picture of India neither of himself. He is vague and indecisive. These expose his inadequacies. Imagine such a person at the helm of affairs. We want someone who can dispense JUSTICe not throw crumbs from the high table. We want someone who can lead-who knows the models of development and not dole homilies from a pulpit. This is what is wrong with him and his mother. No wonder we have the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and now Food security .He does not put into action even a single idea of his. His mother’s unconstitutional NAC drafts out bills. What is the business of Parliament then? When RG talks of power to the Prathans he forgets that in a democracy power comes from the botton. Power does not flow from the top. It is not a tickle down concept. But Mrs Sonia Gandhi and he have empowered themselves to the hilt and talks of empowerment. Not a single decision can be taken without the assent of Mrs Sonia Gandhi.If only they can allow the Panchayat-i-raj to function properly then democracy works?And in a true,vibrant democracy dynasty has no place
There can be no onus on Modi regarding the Gujarat riots. This is the making of the media and those with vested interest especially his opponents. There cannot be two yardsticks- because RG and the Congress carries the baggage of the Sikh massacres. The Congress must account for that before it mentions of the Gujarat riots. Thousands of a minority community was massacred and women raped those who were responsible for such a massive human rights violation have been rewarded by the Congress. His father Rajiv Gandhi even justified the genocide and allowed it right in the heart of Delhi for three full days. So when you carry a beam in your eye why question the speck of dust in the eye of Modi. One wonders why the media is silent on this and does not question the Congress party for this great blot in the national history.
The media has much to blame because it soft pedals all that Rahul says and nobody is bold enough to give a critical analysis of him and his utterances. So how does one rectify mistakes and perform better? On the other hand there is a Modi bashing campaign carried on ruthlessly-even hitting below the belt. This has made Modi strong, determined and firm. The media should be fair and impartial. If Rahul Gandhi can be projected as the next PM what is wrong in projecting Modi as the PM?When RH talked of divisive politics he must know that this was the making of the Congress. If economic policies have failed to meet the aspirations of the people whose fault is it-is it not the Congress who is the author of these policies? If the system is not democratized enough-whose is at fault? Again it is the Congress which has dented every constitutional institution. It has used the Central agencies for its vested interest? If these- the government, business and civil society are not working together-whose fault. Even the PM is not able to work with his own government without the interference of Sonia Gandhi.It was calculative of the Congress to keep two power centers. So it can blame all the ineffectiveness and lack of democracy on one power centre and thump its chest as though it is free of blame. On the other hand all the ‘ four self evident truths’ which Rahul Gandhi stated –failures must be placed at the door of the Congress .So what Rahul Gandhi must learn is to uphold Truth and Justice and then he will realize that most of the shortcomings-nay all emanate from his doorstep and his party’s. Then he will be humble enough to beat his chest and say mea culpa.
It will also be best for Rahul Gandhi to decide what he wants to be and work towards that. He cannot go on being so wavering and indecisive. Making people think that he is very reluctant to have power-something which he already has. He is the most powerful person even above the PM as far as power is concerned and he did not earn it but power was thrust on him. Does he think that the Prime Minister ship will also be thrust on him?
Dr Mrs Hilda Raja,
Vadodara

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April 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm 4 comments

Justice Markandey Katju sans justice

Justice Markandey Katju sans justice
I belong to the old school of thought which considers Judges impartial, unbiased and knew they are those who uphold the Constitution of India and interpret the law and dispense justice .They are the constitutional set of persons set aside for delivering justice and are supposed to be fair-unprejudiced and uphold the law. They see people as citizens of this country and on a levelled plane. There is no big and small, no high and low and no social status and education and money to impinge on their perceptions. For long I held this premise which I agree was slowly but steadily eroding. But the body blow to this premise of mine has come from Justice Katju who had pitched for pardoning Sanjay Dutt without rhyme or reason
What are his reasons? That Sanjay Dutt’s parents were actors-gracious people who were involved in Social Service etc Does This parentage issue come into the picture of those convicted?-That Sanjay Dutt propagating the ideals and values of Gandhiji by his film-‘Lage Raho Munna Bhai’-that he is reformed and that he needed to protect himself and his family.It must be noted that Sanjay Dutt also had acted in films as a violent man. Does it mean that he was propagating violence? Justice Katju must have lost his equilibrium when he stated all this because none of this can be valid for pardoning a person who should have been punished under TADA. Sanjay Dutt did not have a family to protect when he procured those lethal arms.His daughter was in the US and he had not married a second time-and did not have children then. Why had he been absolved of abetting terrorism is a mystery.
It was public knowledge that his arms were outsourced from mafia bosses-which means he had prior knowledge of the unloading of the arms consignment on the shores of Mumbai. Was this huge cache of arms and ammunition for exhibition? Any honest citizen would have informed the authorities of this but Dutt preferred to be silent .By such silence he had abetted the worse terrorism in the country which left hundreds of innocent people dead and hundreds injured. His links with terrorists should have been probed. Now after letting him off the hook of serious abetment of terrorists’ crimes here comes Justice Katju pleading that he be pardoned.
There is no sense of justice in Justice Katju for making such a plea and to think that Justice Katju was a SC judge sends shivers down my spine. Show me the man and I will show you the law seems to be his position. Where does the Fundamental Right of equality stand in this plea of Justice Katju?Justice Katju has become now a Bollywood champion and hence not only for Sanjay Dutt but also for other Khans and Bollywood stars who shoot down endangered animals and protected species he says he will take up their cases for pardon. How very kind hearted of him. I wonder why Justice Katju is so fascinated by Bollywood only. Why his heart bleeds for them and why this great mercy for them?Or will this kind of attitude seeking pardon be extended to all the rich and those in high society?
But when Dev Ananda died and the media gave prominence to that news item in all the channels Justice Katju was very angry. He then wanted to know why such vast coverage was given for Dev Ananda not only in the electronic media but also in the print media. Why the front page carried this news? While Justice argued that farmers committed suicides and other pressing social problems were there the media showed a ‘lack of sense of priority’. At that time I thought Justice Katju was right but think he is wrong now because as a secular man he seems to carry his bias for a particular community on his sleeves. Hence to prove his secularism he does not mind even being called a Congressman. Justice Katju forgets that the Congress is far from secular and is the most communal political party in India.That much for his sense of discernment. Thank heavens Justice Katju is no longer a sitting judge.
But one cannot but feel sorry for the Press Council of India to have a chairman who not only stirs a hornet’s nest but airs his bias and prejudices so blatantly. So back to Sanjay Dutt’s case one wonders why Justice Katju and others like Digvijaya Singh have become his advocates when Sanjay Dutt himself has rejected ‘pardon’. He must have felt guilty and knew that this is the least punishment he deserves-Of his four years of conviction one can be sure that he will be half the time out on bail for completing his films. Would it not then be fair to leave the 53 year old Sanjay Dutt in peace till he surrenders and completes his five year term of which he had served 18 months earlier having being released in 2007 on bail. Let him uphold the law of the land and show that he is like other citizen equal before the law. Justice Katju should advise him on this count.
By the way is there any time bound period for the tenure of the chairmanship of the Press Council of India. If so I wonder how many more years is left for Justice Katju-He need not worry because he has shown his secular credentials like the Congress and does not mind being called a Congressman if that means to prove his secularism. So it also means that post retirement benefits will come calling on him…may be a governorship. This would suit him because Raj Bhavan can become a Congress office with Justice Markandey Katju at the helm of its affairs-What is wrong after all so many Raj Bhavans have become Congress offices so one more can be added no harm.
There were times when ordinary souls like me would not dare to write about a former Justice of the Supreme Court but today there is no hesitation because Justice Katju by his views and actions has erased that line of reticence and lost much of that glow and halo that formerly used to surround Justices of the Supreme Court.
Dr Hilda Raja,
Vadodara

April 1, 2013 at 3:17 pm Leave a comment


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