The democracy of India had never been in such a degraded state after Independence. In Parliamentary democracy, political parties have a very important position but the irony is that the character of the political parties who run Parliamentary democracy has become almost the same. May it be the Congress or the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) or may it be any other political party whose representatives are there in Parliament or all those who are in the Government of any of the States. The behaviour of everyone has become like that of a Government party. So, on those questions which are related to the public, all the parties are helping each other and it seems they are standing against the interests of the common people. The direct, straight forward question linked with the public is of corruption.
When Anna Hazare made an appearance in the political firmament of India and the public raised its voice against corruption, then, to end the goodwill for Anna Hazare the Central Government, Congress Party and the main Opposition party, BJP made allegations of corruption against his advisors Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia and Kiran Bedi. They felt that something or the other would come in their hands and these people would become silent out of fear. But the opposite happened. They did not remain silent and they levelled allegations against the leaders of the Congress and the BJP along with proofs. As a result of these allegations the Congress and the BJP have taken a stand against each other. Arvind Kejriwal made allegations against Robert Vadra, Salman Khurshid, Nitin Gadkari and Ranjan Bhattacharya. Subramanium Swamy made allegations against Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi. Some more minor fireworks did happen, but for the first time in the politics of India the veil on the co-existence in corruption was removed.
It seemed as if the Congress and the BJP together have made a joint venture to rob the country. Neither do you say on me, nor do I say on you is the principle that both of them have adopted. The proof of this can be found from this statement of Digvijay Singh that I have the proofs of corruption against the son and daughter of Advani, but I won’t do personal attacks. People of both the parties instead of investigating the allegations levelled against the senior leaders of their party are talking about investigation on some other people. When the Government started investigations on Nitin Gadkari then the journalists asked why are investigations not being done on Robert Vadra, then the present Information Minister said that it is a different type of case, so its investigation is not being done and the case of Gadkari is of a different type, so its investigation is being done. He did not define this different type. Narendra Modi took too much liberty and said that the girl friend of the newly appointed State Minister Shashi Tharoor’s girlfriend is of rupees 50 crores. In reply Digvijay Singh spoke to the media of Narendra Modi’s marriage and of his wife earning her livelihood in one of the villages of Gujarat as a teacher.
The people of the country are surprised, baffled and worried that issues like costliness, unemployment, education, health, water, land, food and hunger are not a priority of any of the political parties. All of a sudden when Arvind Kejriwal threw a stone on the quiet pond of corruption, the splashes of slush started to be seen spread on all the faces in an abnormal manner. The Leftists are quiet in the entire game, Mayawati is quiet, Mulayam Singh Yadav is quiet, Nitish Kumar is quiet. The quietness of Mulayam Singh, Mayawati and Nitish Kumar is understandable, but the quietness of the Leftist parties is not understandable. The problem of the Leftists is this that instead of going along with the anger of the people, they fall in the pit of taking glory in finding out who picked up the issue. The Leftist leaders are saying that the disclosure of the relation that Arvind Kejriwal has made now between Reliance and the Congress and the BJP, they had made this disclosure much earlier and they had also written a letter to the Prime Minister on this issue.
Anna Hazare and General V.K. Singh want that the political parties should now tell the people that we will not make roads for you, roads will be made by the private companies and if you want to walk on them then you will have to pay toll taxes. Now we will not make arrangements for drinking water, if you have to drink water then you will have to drink it by buying water from the companies that make bottles of water. We will not open schools now, if you want to educate your children then you will have to send your children to schools that have been opened by the big companies. Now the Government will not open hospitals, in order to save your lives now you will have to visit those hospitals which have been opened by the big companies. If after this also the public gives votes to the Congress, the BJP and those parties who are silent on these issues today then the work that they are doing, they will get a mandate for it.
The question is this : what is the shortcoming in the strategy of the Leftists, that the people do not take seriously matters raised by them, and why the questions raised by them do not become the reason for uniting people. Today when the people are seen to be angry on the question of corruption, then the Leftist is seen standing far from the people. In the mean time Arvind Kejriwal and his colleagues filled the vacant space of the traditional Opposition party successfully. They have made a place for themselves by upstaging Congress and BJP in Delhi. They are trying to make the people of Delhi believe that the moves of both the Congress and the BJP are the same, the character is same and the face is same. If there is any difference between the two, then it is of the mask. The Arvind Kejriwal whom Salman Khurshid had called an ant and the leaders of the Congress had tried to finish the credibility of Arvind Kejriwal, that same ant named Arvind Kejriwal by going inside the trumpet of the big elephant named Salman Khurshid has put his life in trouble. Arvind Kejriwal raised question marks on the credibility of the Congress and the BJP. The name of Arvind Kejriwal which the people of the Congress and the BJP were making fun of till yesterday, those very people today are taking the name of Arvind Kejriwal with fear. The success of Arvind Kejriwal is not a success of money, the success of Arvind Kejriwal is the success of those issues, whose relation is with the broken trust of the people, pain of the common people and with their problems.
In the mean time an important factor has risen in the politics of India. The name of this factor is Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh. Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh together have made this announcement that the Government of India and the people sitting in the Parliament of India are working against the Constitution, who have given full freedom to the Government of India to work against the directives of the Constitution, so this Parliament should be dissolved. This statement with the combined signatures of both of them has got a very good reception in
the country. Both of them have also made this announcement that they will be visiting different places in the country together and asking the people to agitate to dissolve this Parliament and conduct fresh elections. There is a big reason behind this. The Constitution has given recognition to the Government which believes in a welfare state, but today the Government, contrary to the concept of the principles of a welfare state laid out in the Constitution, have adopted the principle of market related concepts. The Government which believes in a welfare state takes the responsibility of providing things like education, health, food, employment, roads, hospitals and schools, but the Government which believes in a market based state instead of a welfare state do not take any responsibility for the poor people of the country.
Anna Hazare and General V.K. Singh want that the political parties should now tell the people that we will not make roads for you, roads will be made by the private companies and if you want to walk on it then you will have to pay toll taxes. Now we will not make arrangements for drinking water, if you have to drink water then you will have to drink it by buying water from the companies that make bottles of water. We will not open schools now, if you want to educate your children then you will have to send your children to schools that have been opened by the big companies. Now the Government will not open hospitals, in order to save your lives now you will have to visit those hospitals which have been opened by the big companies. If after this also the public gives votes to the Congress, the BJP and those parties who are silent on these issues today then the work that they are doing, they will get a mandate for it. And if the public wants then they will give their votes to those people who want to proceed on the traditional path of a welfare state instead of a Government run by the market. Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh want that if the Constitution has to be changed then it should be changed by taking a mandate from the public, it should not be changed secretly and not in a fraudulent manner. This is the reason that they have spoken of making a new Lok Sabha by dissolving this present Lok Sabha. The unfortunate thing is that on the surreptitious efforts to change the Constitution neither the Leftists, Mulayam Singh, Mayawati nor any other political party went to the public. So it might be possible, if the common people come to understand this cleverness, that this country will witness a new movement from 30 January.
Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh have their own strengths and weaknesses. There is a fewer number of such people with Anna Hazare who have the experience of social movements, social contradictions, priority of working for the poor and to take the country as a whole and understand education, health, employment and law. There are mostly such people with Anna Hazare who, during their times have been in the civil services in different fields. There would be hardly any one among them who has read any book of Gandhiji. Out of them nobody would perhaps have even seen the book ‘Hind Swaraj’ by Mahatma Gandhi. There is a challenge and worry also in front of Anna Hazare. How will he make these people who have never even tried to know understand about the history of social movements and about the concept of Gandhi’s India. Anna Hazare has more number of such people among his workers who are incapable of looking at the problems of the country from the spectacles of Gandhiji. If you want to change society then the workers of Anna Hazare will have to understand the difference between capitalism, communism, the path of Gandhi and ‘Sarvodaya.’ The principle of people’s participation in power should be their conviction. A similar sort of a problem lies with General V. K. Singh. He too has more or less the same challenges in front of him which are in front of Anna Hazare. In spite of those challenges Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh are such faces, whose language and promises can be believed by the country. But in the name of any committee or if their representatives try to give leadership to the country then the movement of the people will finish for the next 20 years and the morale of the people will be battered. The country will ask questions from Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh, not from them who take their name.
In this time of trouble for the democracy of the country, the Indian media is also engaged in left, right, centre which means a directionless debate. Its full effort is to prevent a movement from happening and it wants to distract the attention of the people from the issues. Some big journalists with shamelessness have openly engaged themselves in espousing the Government, saving the BJP and in breaking Arvind Kejriwal, Anna Hazare and General V. K. Singh. Their questions are such that if their answers are given by Anna Hazare, General V. K. Singh and Arvind Kejriwal then efforts are made to use their own statements against them. All these three persons are straight forward persons; they do not understand the craftiness and foxiness of that level of media, who have taken a bribe (taken a ‘supari’ ) for doing social and political murder of the honest people in the country. The most dangerous signal of this entire situation is given by P. Chidambaram, Rahul Gandhi of the Congress and Nitin Gadkari of the BJP. They are of the belief that the allegations levelled on them are not correct, but the allegations levelled on others on the opposing side are correct. Secondly, there should not be a misuse of the right to speech or the conspiracy of changing democracy into a controlled democracy as the BJP and the Congress are doing together; perhaps an attempt is being made to hatch a conspiracy to turn this country into a police state or again Congress and the BJP together are making plans to crush Anna Hazare, General V. K. Singh and Arvind Kejriwal. The responsibility of working towards the hopes and interests of the people of India has been entrusted to Anna Hazare, General V. K. Singh and Arvind Kejriwal by history. If they fail to handle this responsibility then the logical responsibility of fulfilling the dreams of opposition and change in the country would go in to the hands of the Naxals or anarchy would spread in the country.