Well meant intentions going wrong?
Benito Z Swu
[dropcap]A[/dropcap]nybody can talk. That is the liberty everybody enjoys in a democracy. But when that liberty is curtailed by a power that has been passed down to generations of a family, that is not democracy. That is not what Dr. Ambedkar had in mind when he framed the Indian Constitution. That is not what Mahatma Gandhi had in mind when he won India’s freedom with the sword of non-violence. That is not what Sardar Vallabhai Patel had in mind when as Home Minister he stood up against Pandit J.Nehru, his Prime Minister over governance during that time when all the odds were staked against him. Maybe that was not what Pandit Nehru too had exactly in his mind atleast in his first term as Prime Minister. When the people of India in the aftermath of the glorious freedom gained had elevated the Indian National Congress (INC) leadership to that category equivalent of a demi-god they most probably had no idea that 60 to 70 years later down the line, that seed of good intentioned thinking would go horribly wrong with birth-right, downright favoritism, nepotism and narrow political interests taking precedence over dynamic political and social activism. Those early days were the time when even Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru’s westernism of having an open extra marital affair with the wife of Lord Mountbatten the last Governor General of India was easily overlooked by the people in their euphoria of having and tasting freedom.The sad part was India having adopted the very democratic parliamentary system of governance also unfortunately intermingled it with the Monarchial system as was and is practiced in Britain, but in a twisted way. Free India was just born but the British and their systems of governance with its many unwritten conventional checks and balances were as old as time. Maybe it just cannot and should not have been duplicated in its entirety. When India just cannot keep pace or do justice even to the written constitution, following up with the unwritten conventional checks and balances is nothing but asking for the moon. The British, we can all safely assume could and might have easily noticed the flaws and the danger that will follow but having forced to swallow the bitter pill of letting go of its golden egg laying goose preferred to keep quiet. Quiet even to the extent of overlooking the wife’s infidelity with the man of the hour. Indians as a whole even today and much during those early times were and are hero worshippers. The hero who can never do or be wrong and as such without even a hint of an argument a pink becomes a black eventhough it is actually white. The constitutional post of the President of India was also created on the lines of the hereditary monarchy of the British. However as much old and powerful was Britain that much new and unstable was free India. As much advanced was Britain that much backward was new born free India socially, economically and politically. No wonder it did not take decades together to see a family in the name of the grand old Congress party to hijack the hereditary monarchy of Britain to the parliamentary system of democracy in India. Some blame it to fate because had Mahatma Gandhi not been assassinated so early in the day after India’s birth, India as a Nation and its systems would have been very different if not better than what it is today. The huge vacuum created by the exit of Mahatma Gandhi gave space and thereby the opportunity to the then Indian National Congress leadership to consolidate and cement the individualistic nature of politics in India. We just see that the ‘trust’ of the people of India to the Indian national Congress (INC) and in default to Prime Minister Nehru was indeed extreme. From among the galaxy of political stars in the Indian National Congress, it was Pandit Jawarharlal Nehru who took the maximum advantage because of his proximity and adaptability with both the Indian public and more importantly the British.
Back home here in Nagaland today we see the other end of the extreme. The ‘trust’ factor deficiency is just too glaring. Just because it is the nature of politics for a politician to be wary of trusting another of his kind it just does not mean that the public too is untrustworthy. Infact we see that it is the other way round. The absolute high command culture of politics in a democracy like India is in itself murdering democracy . One just cannot blame NCP boss Sharad Pawar when he today says that he will not be there working with the Congress in its present set of leadership order. Considering his age, experience, capability & capacity and having been someone who has been successful in his every endeavor, it does not come as a surprise. The pot calling the kettle black is hypocrisy but anyway true because it is ofcourse black. But the pot or the kettle calling the ceramic teapot black is bogus and a straight-faced lie.
Very much appreciating the Chief Minister of the day and many of his colleagues for even thinking out of the box to provide resources and employment even at the lean of times to many a Naga youths, we have to face the reality that in a state like ours where there is practically no avenues available for a reasonable gainful long term employment both in the private as well as the public sector for the vast majority of educated youths, I sincerely believe that more than the qualified youths trusting the government it is the prerogative of the government to start risking and trusting the people. The youths of today are practically aware of the reality that with so few for so many and with authorities becoming twice shy once bitten, personal decision making is never an impulse or a knee jerk reaction. It is but the result of careful soul searching with practical realities. Ask any self respecting, well intentioned hard working Naga youth today and we see everyone having atleast a small story of being shortchanged ultimately in one form or the other for a hitherto vested motive and interests. It is very important that the youths of today before indulging headlong into any well-meaning and intentioned venture must also beforehand be aware of the motive and the targeted end-game of the many ventures but not be led through the nose rings. There’s room for misinterpretation here but taking it positively and scrubbing off anything negative if any will do nobody harm. Anybody can write. And a critic will definitely have much, much more to write and that is the nature of democracy in its purest form. One unpalatable fact of our governance system is that the more we change the more we become the same. Whichever party with different ideologies comes to power it always looks and works the same as the bureaucracy remains the same. We all know, in the Presidential form of government as in America, with the coming of a new president it is the prerogative of the President to name any citizen whom he deems fit for a particular bureaucratic post. As such there is total change in every aspect of decision making and governance and hence there is rapid progress and development even if it might sound less democratic because the obligations go to the President and the President alone. Any ruling dispensation of the day ofcourse does and will have enough achievements to highlight and make aware to the people whereby the people see, think and say “amen” for the greater good of all. However we see that glaring shortcoming of educating the public of its merits inspite of sackfulls of progressive facts. It’s a shame. It is a shame because more than the opposition not knowing how to oppose, the ruling government of the day fares just too poor in marketing. I’m cock sure many will nod their head twice if not thrice or atleast once to what I am saying.
Lastly, much as we respect and love Dr. Manmohan Singh who ruled India for atleast the past last decade, his rule without authority did not endear him to us just as it did not endear him to the NCP boss. We can hope when we pray and as such we pray that the government of the day rule over us with authority, love and compassion.