The Lokpal issue is again on the forefront with a threat of the anti-corruption campaign being renewed in the near future. That Lokpal is no answer to corruption or the lawlessness which is another name for corruption in this nation.
Lawlessness is corruption because it is the ineffective enforcement of laws that lead to the existence of corruption. The law is misused to protect the rich and the powerful. The people in general have no respect for law and they look for loopholes to avoid rules and regulations. Law is never uniformly applied in our feudal system.
What we need is a greater sensitivity so that wherever clever manipulators are seeking to gain at the cost of justice and fairplay, the government must be forced to act .
The anti-corruption campaigners are barking up the wrong tree. Their theme seems to be that if there is a strong Lokpal corruption will end. And it is also their theme that the current government led by the UPA is corrupt and its replacement will bring about the needed change.
The Lokpal issue is now with a select committee of parliament. It is certain to be bogged down by controversial suggestions and conflict of interests and it is now too early to guess the outcome. But one thing is certain. It is not going to be the answer to the problems of corruption facing this country. We are all barking up the wrong tree.
We can not import a new set of politicians or bureaucrats to rule us ; we the people ofIndiahave chosen them and they are made up of the same blood and flesh as we are. Every people, it is said, get the kind of government it deserves. Corruption has no ideology or colour. If we blame the Congress for the state of affairs, it is only a partial truth. All parties have their share of black sheep and the efforts of the anti-corruption campaigners to direct their ire at the government sends a wrong message.
Enough laws exist in this nation to counter corruption. But they are not implemented honestly. While the petty thieves and offenders are taken to task, only recently the authorities have become emboldened to act against the mighty and the highly placed who are looting the nation.
The business class, enjoying political clout, strives to maximize profits by bribing politicians and seeking favours from those in power. The political class has made sure that politics is profitable business. Those who are in power have been acquiring for themselves , fat pay packets besides numerous perks and privileges. Instead of being
the servants of the people , they lord over them…But for the perks, privileges , power and prestige one wonders whether there would have been such a rush of men to the profession. It is high time these privileges and powers are taken away from them so that only genuine ones enter politics.
Bribe takers exist because there are bribe givers willing to get their work done by paying extra money. And the philosophy of relativism which is close to the Hindutva ideology will find nothing wrong with the payment or acceptance of such money because in a relativistic situation anything can be justified. In this country, the people really believe in bribing even the gods! That is how the temples and religious institutions come to possess their great wealth.
Corruption has a wide canvass here. Massive ignorance corrupts the democratic system..
Muscle power and money power ensure that criminal elements are catapulted into our legislatures. Business houses and corporates compete with one another and their dazzling success stories might be hiding corrupt deals and practices. The caste system has its own ways of reward and punishments. All these vitiates issues of justice and fair play providing scope for corruption.
After the British left our country a surge of national pride created a series of narrow loyalties based on race, language, religion, region and creed dividing us and fatally corroding national unity and oneness. All these divisions created inequalities and inequities.
Simply going on fast or slogan shouting from Jantar Mantar will not cleanse the social , economic and political systems which are all stained by corruption. The ‘Indiaagainst Corruption’ lobby will do well to draw a map of the territory of the corruption demon. It includes all of life, the whole culture and all theterritoryofIndia.
If one coalition of parties turns out to be corrupt, are we to replace it by another coalition of entirely different parties ? The absurdity of such a solution is self evident because the desire for unjust gain is ingrained in human nature and just awaits an opportunity for fulfillment. Perhaps we can add more checks and balances to prevent this trait in human nature going out of control.
Going on fast, slogan shouting or whipping up emotions through other means will not remedy the situation. While the awakening against the evil as created in the initial stages by the Anna Hazare team is a good beginning the future of the movement should be widened to embrace all and should not be part of any political agenda. It stands discredited now because of the impression it is selective in its approach.
The effort should be to sensitize the whole population on the need for ethics in the public sphere. Recent efforts to ensure transparency and accountability at all levels of governance and especially in the matter of delivery of services to the common man are3 steps in the right direction. The Right to Information Act, the Right to Education Act and the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme are pointers to the government yielding to popular will.
This is a time for men of goodwill to come together and think of ways of formulating similar measures to advance the cause of a corruption-free government and a corruption-free society. This would call for radical changes in the outlook of the people . Right from the stage of schooling, girls and boys should b taught those values which build their character ; the media should cease promoting a consumerist society ; the entertainment industry , the large corporations and the business community as a whole should be restrained from exploiting the people .If there is no concerted action to achieve such ends, the country would drift towards chaos and lawlessness.
We have become a people tossed into conflicts by our narrow loyalties to caste, religion, creed and language; we have acquired a wrong pride which blinds us to our shortcomings and failures ; our materialistic ambitions had rendered our religiosity a cover for our hypocrisy. We , as some have said, need a new freedom struggle to liberate us from our greed and insensitivity. A spirit of repentance should take hold of us and not an aggressive spirit against some imaginary enemies. The truth is that the enemy is within.