Thursday, October 11, 2007

Are we are becoming a shallow and mean people? - By Sandip K. Dasverma

A question often bothers my mind: Are we are becoming a shallow and mean people? Or we are just allowing such people to represent us by default?

I saw many of the protest videos in New York against Sonia Gandhi’s visit to UNO, last week. Most of them are in bad test, to say the least.

I don't like the dynastic tendencies at all. In 1975, my sympathies were with the opposition alliance, largely due to the dynastic tendencies and it's promotion by the All India Radio(AIR), also popularly known as All Indira Radio. Though I was a Government of Orissa servant, my position was not private, though I did not actively participate in politics. Even with that background I don't like this ugly illiberalism and ethos, which smacks of communalism and dirty politics. There is no doubt that starting from Indira Gandhi till today, this family has taken advantage of the coincidence of their last name with M.K. Gandhi. However the way to face that is not to ally with people who are openly communal. The way BJP has tried to take advantage of ignorance of Indian masses to project Ram Setu is clearly a manifestation of of their archaic and evil mind. Ofcourse Mr. Karunanidhi, a thrice married man, in a country, where only monogamy is legal, has by his stupid action made it worse. Unfortunately, we has a people have very little choice. The choice is between Twiddle Dum and Twiddle Dee. First a bunch of unscientific backward looking people who promote miracles in 21st century, for example Ganesh statue drinking milk (with Ph.Ds in science) and another bunch who speak all the right things but do just the reverse. They both keep other issues (like Ram vs. Rome) alive, so public attention is well diverted away from their CORRUPTION and emptying of the public treasury.

Why could not the same people at New York, protest stealing of 555 crores of 755 crores in NREGA money, in Orissa. And similar actions of Government and Government machinery all over India? I did not also see a single poster, demanding enforcement of RTI properly, nor a demand to enforce Rule of Law properly. Or a demand to STOP farmer's suicide in half of India, particularly in the leading industrial states like Andhra Pradesh and Maharastra. The NPA (National Progressive Alliance) Government led by Congress, can't anymore after 3 years, claim that it is what they inherited from NDA (National Democratic Alliance). Are these issues not what she as the leader of her party and NPA, be judged on? Would it not have helped people in whose name all this humbug is going on, if the attention of the International community would have been drawn to these deficiencies of the current Government? Would it not have forced changes and drawn attention of the international community - about real issues of current time. I am sure it was not beneficial to do as it was done, to raise the issue of her Italian ancestry rather than focus on the inadequacy of her parties’ Government??

Don't these people understand that it is stupid to do it this way – and project ourselves as a bunch of intolerant people, to an international audience? It is like asking sympathy of the very people you want to denigrate, is not it? It is stupid at best and highly harmful and damaging to image of India, at the worst.

If I were to decide what to do, I would have invited Prof. Jean Derez to lead a protest based on all the above issues and highlighted the fact that in Gandhi's land one Ambani is building a house worth $1 billion, under the present Government's guardianship and her leadership. This while, nearly 50 thousand or more farmers have committed suicide and there is no mention of the same in the issues raised. The rejection of our real heritage and values, like simple living and high thinking, was not even an issue made by these people each of whom want to be a Mahajan or an Ambani. All they can think of is Ram Vs. Rome, such is their lop sided view and politics.

We have to remember that replacing a Gandhi dynasty with a Mahajan (he improved his net worth from Zero to 2200 crores in 20 years of politics) is going from frying pan to fire. Should we not have concentrated on why we are going away from our real heritage, under this very Government? If we accepted Mira Behn (Magaret Slade), Rev. C. F. Andrews, Nelli Sengupta, Anne Besant, Dr. Varrier Alwyn, and today’s people like Jeanne Druz and many such, why can't we accept Sonia, as long as she accepts our heritage and type of living?

A question often bothers my mind: Are we becoming a shallow and mean people or we are just allowing such people to represent us, by default?