But, is it nothing to know when you are dying, when you are about to take leave of this world, of its joys and sorrows, when the past of your life is unfurled before you, when eternity opens wide its portals, is it nothing to know at that last awful,supreme moment of your lives, that you have not lived in vain, that you have lived for the benefit of others, that you have lived to help in the cause of your country's regeneration?

-Surendranath Banerjea

Monday, March 4, 2013

Devil's Alternative!

2014 is looming large. In a few months, India would be witnessing yet another general election. Not that it's something to look forward to. But nevertheless, it's a moment most Indians might be waiting for. The never ending spirals of scams and shams are sucking every drop of blood from each of us among the cattle class. Not a day passes without a word of reproach on the govt. CWG, 2G, ISRO-Devas, Land scams, Land acquisition and Tribal abuse, Law and Order problems, Intelligence flaws and Terror strikes, Inflation, and the list goes on..

Not that the result of 2014 would turn out any different from 2009, but i just hope to see a different side of the same coin.

Neither UPA nor NDA has announced their prime ministerial candidate although the choices are as obvious as they could be. One is the incumbent prince of a ruling dynasty and the other is an arrogant autocrat from a 'successful' state. Of course i wouldn't support either of them if i had a choice, both of them are disastrous choices for a democratic India, but unfortunately, i don't have one at the moment.

There's no reason i would support Rahul Gandhi. I dont find him educated or capable enough to rule a country. Not every leader needs to be flamboyant. Lal bahadur shastri was not one. Atal Bihari Vajpayee was not one. But the empathy and the willingness to do the right thing at the right moment is what decides how good a leader is. And i do not have any reason to believe that Rahul Gandhi would be the apt choice when the country is stooping into an imbroglio. Not every leader needs to be scholarly too. India being a nation with a literacy rate of just 74.04% (which implies just reading one's name and writing it out), can't necessarily insist on an above average educated and scholarly people's representative.

A democracy is a state of governance where people have the absolute freedom to choose their rulers and are not just presented a half baked bacon! The faith in India is the faith in Democracy. We overthrew princely rule and paved way to democracy so that the key to governance stays in the hands of the cattle class! By choosing all scions of political families, congress is not only sabotaging that noble concept, but also trampling on the only hope of a better future. Rahul gandhi, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sachin Pilot,..the scions of these political dynasties still give that princely look to UPA II. I do not want to support Rahul Gandhi because this is not a healthy trend. If a Sonia gandhi could overthrow Sitaram Kesari at the break of dawn, and if Pranab mukherjee could be forced to be a presidential clown to pave way to Rahul gandhi, then my kids will witness Priyanka's son/daughter become the Prime minister in another 40yrs. This is not what our ancestors fought for. They fought for a pure and noble form of democracy. Lincoln's democracy where the govt is of the people, for the people and by the people. 

I would have had a second thought on UPA if someone who climbed up the ladder from the rank and file were chosen. Even with a lot of hatred for PC or Kapil Sibal, i would have been happy about the choice. I would have been happy to project the Harvard educated intellectuals as my country's head. But with the current trend, it's clear to even the worst nitwit that it's the nobility and not the caliber which decides the merit.

Modi, on the other hand, provides us an exact opposite choice. A person who established his credibility from the grass root level. A leader who could get things done without being corrupt, one who could avoid the red tapism which our bureaucracy is so infamous for. Someone who could deliver the promises he has made. Someone who has proved himself to be the people's representative for 3 electoral terms. But will he be a better alternative when we want to safeguard democracy? Haven't we committed one mistake already by electing Indira Gandhi? There might be historians and political commentators who laud her as one of the greatest prime ministers of India. But isn't Emergency and operation Blue Star and forced sterilizations enough examples of her arrogance and autocracy and megalomania? Doesn't Modi give us equally negative vibes?

There was a controversy Markantey Katju recently stirred with his anti Modi remarks and his comparison with Hitler and the concentration camps. I didn't approve of Katju's comments not because it didn't deserve any merit, but because there was a political alignment in his statement which is uncalled for from a person of his position and stature. It did resound a gratitude to his employers, as rightly accused by Arun Jaitley and many other BJP member.

Modi may not be a Hitler. 2002 may not be any different from 1984. But, Modi is definitely not Rajiv, but more of his mom.His actions reflect his narcissism and megalomania. By electing Modi, we may not be necessarily inviting another Emergency because we no more have a single party govt or a 2/3 majority for any govt. But he doesn't appear to be someone who would hesitate using govt agencies like RAW to spy on his political opponents and dissidents. He may be a necessary evil at this hour of tension with Pak and China. But he might become indispensable once peace knocks.

Richard Nixon was people's favorite during Vietnam War. Someone who wouldn't hesitate to pay tribute to his soldiers with a bombing in Cambodia. But the methods he used to hold on to power and to destroy every finger raised against him, the ratfucking and wiretapping, turned out to be the darkest chapter in American History and himself became the lone President of United States of America to have filed his resignation.

Our desperation for a leader or a savior shouldn't plummet us into a deeper abyss. But do we have a choice? Either ways, we are doomed.

PS : This image was Open Magazine's cover picture a month back. I felt it grossly unfair to not give due importance to Rajiv's feat in 1984, so doctored the pic a little so that Rajiv becomes an equally powerful opponent for Modi in Congress Camp! Kejriwal - India's gone to the dogs!!

Khuda Hafiz