Anna Hazare : Is political power to the Civil Society a threat to Democracy ?

There is debate raging, or perhaps more than debate -a revolution -seething in India that could redefine the relationship between a People and it’s democratically elected Parliament and Government.

Does Power once given to the elected Government and Parliament for it’s term ( in India 5 years) effectively take all Power away from the Citizens of India over governance for that period ?  The movement led by Anna Hazare who is on a hunger strike right now to institute his version of a long standing bill in Parliament that will put a Civil Society watchdog over the workings of the Parliament has caught the imagination, and huge support amongst the aspirational and educated class in India.  A class that has so far been content to be part of the great hope of better standards of living through economic growth. A class that is often accused of not even voting, is now coming out in droves on the streets to be heard. (and since I wrote this 15 hours ago, massive sections of India’s population from all classes have joined the movements on the streets)

To be heard against what they see as the greatest cancer that exists in India.  One that is not only unfair, unjust, illegal, but patently immoral. The cancer of corruption. While the Government and the economists tout growth rates in the economy as a show of success, the people feel that those in the Political Class and others with access to the political class have unfairly usurped a far far larger share of the potential growth in India.  Not only that, they have, under the watch and encouragement of the Political Classes, stolen huge wealth in terms of mineral resources and public money from India for themselves.  A large share of which goes back to the Political Classes and so the cycle continues.

The Government has been caught off guard.  Not used to being challenged like this by the people who it thought politically uncommitted.  Already facing an armed insurrection by the so called rural ‘maoists’ in rural and tribal areas. The so called ‘Middle Class’ is considered in any democracy the biggest supporters of stability. Ones who will not  shut shop to take to the streets. Simply because they have too much to loose through disruptions.

Well, they have.  And a Government is floundering.

While the Opposition has chosen to actively support the movement, it seems just a ploy to flog the current Government. It remains to be seen what teeth  the Civil Society bill called the Jan LokPal Bill the opposition will finally vote for too.  Are they willing to curtail themselves if they form the Government ?

Ask any Indian what the greatest problem they have faced all their lives, and will continue to fact all their lives, and they will say that one word ‘Corruption”. It touches us all on a day to day, sometimes hour to hour basis.  We have learnt to live with, and more dangerously, accept it as part of our culture.  We have learnt to condone it and many see it as their only way to economic success.

But very high profile cases within the Government in power, assuming mind boggling numbers in a Nation where half of the population lives below the poverty lines staggered the nation and caused huge outcry.  Not only because of the scale of corruption. But because the sheer arrogance with which the Political Classes in collusion with their associates have been looting the country.

Has the Political class in India become so arrogant in its assumption of Power that it sees itself as unquestionable and above the law ?  Have the assumed checks and balances within a Parliamentary broken down ?  Is the Political class as a whole corrupt ? Why is the greatest (and public)  defence of the Government in Power against charges of corruption from the Opposition ” YOU DID IT TOO !”

There is a serious loss of faith in the Political System amongst the people. That is very very dangerous.  Not just from the dispossessed, but from the educated, not just the jobless but from those that have taken leave from their jobs to join the mass protest.

Is this the begininngs of the break down of the Democratic System as many suggest ?

I would argue that it is not. I would argue that this is an evolution in Democracy.

The Indian Democratic System was adapted from it’s former colonial masters, into a brilliant but adaptive Constitution.  But the system installed to support the fundamentals of the Constitution were designed for India’s population at time of Independence. A mere 350 million.  For a demographic far far older than we are now. No one at that time could have dreamt of a nation of 1.2 Billion people with 60 % of the population below 25. Soon India will hold 15% of the world’s teenage population.  India’s Political, Social, Judicial systems could not have predicted a a young, aspirational, entrepreneurial, technologically adept population we have today. They could not have predicted that at the end of each 5 year political term, the world would be barely recognizable.

India’s endemic corruption is not a cultural imperative.  It is the result of a slow, unresponsive, antiquated system that is at odds with challenges of Modernity. A system protected by those that are personally benefiting from it at the cost of the aspirations of the People of India.  Forgetting that the first words of the Indian Constitution are not ‘WE THE GOVERNMENT’ or ‘WE THE PARLIAMENT’,  but :

‘WE THE PEOPLE OF INDIA’

I support Anna Hazare and a strong version of the Jan Lokpal Bill provided that in its execution it does not become as squeaky as a massive old door that consistently need to be oiled and pushed to make it budge as many of the rest of Indian systems.

The Principles of Democracy are not changeable. But the systems supporting them must be willing to change and adapt.

194 Responses to “Anna Hazare : Is political power to the Civil Society a threat to Democracy ?”

  1. Vivek says:

    Following are the statistics from Election Commission of India web site regarding 2009 (April-May) elections for Lok Sabha constituency of Chandini Chowk, New Delhi. Mr Kapil Sibal won the election from there.

    Total Electors – 1413535
    Total votes cast – 780445
    Sibal’s votes – 465713 – nearly 33% of total electors

    Electors who did not vote, i.e. votes which may not be for Mr. Sibal: 1413535 – 780445 = 633090 i.e. nearly 45% of total electors

    Confirmed votes against Sibal: – 780445 – 465713 = 314732 i.e. 22% of total electors

    With above numbers and illustration, lets analyze the first-past-the-post system of elections. Of 1413535 (total population of constituency will obviously be more), only 780445 cast their votes. 633090 electors (1413535 – 780445), we cannot be sure whether they would have cast their votes for Mr. Sibal. But, presumption should be that since they had not come out to vote, their vote would obviously have been against Sibal, or else, had they been enthused by Mr Sibal, they would have surely come out and voted in his favor. So, total votes against Mr Sibal are 947822 [(314732+633090) or (1413535 – 465413)], which works out to nearly 67%.

    And how votes of these 465713 electors was secured by Mr Sibal.? On his merits? No. Most of them voted for him because of his ‘secular’ credentials (read sympathetic to Muslims) of Congress Party. And how these electors were tried to be won over? By devious means like berating the honor of police men who died in the Batala House (near Jamia Milia Islamia in New Delhi) encounter on September 2008 while trying to flush out militants from there. In other words, blatant communal politics.

    So, this is the beauty of our parliamentary system. A person for whom only 465713 votes are cast, but against whom there are 947822 voters i.e. more than double the votes in favor, is elected as MP. And then with beating of chests it pronounced ‘We are the elected the representatives’, ‘We will make the laws’, and these 947822 voters are creating tyranny of the unelected!!!.

    I am sure if above kind of analysis is carried out for all the parliamentary constituencies, you would find same results – more electors against the elected MP, then his/her favor.
    So, how can Parliament be said to representative of people? It is in fact against majority of the electors.

    No system of governance is perfect, least of all democracy and a parliamentary democracy at that. So, what should be done? Shamelessly exploit the weaknesses of the system for personal gains, or with humility accept the weaknesses, and work around them so as not to damage the system?

    Lets continue with above numbers. Should 947822 electors in Sibal’s constituency, who either voted against him or did not vote, have no right to be heard after the elections are over? Honest, mature and wise politician would be aware that he has been elected by a minority of the total population of his constituency, and will try to hear the voice of all the people, as far as practical. Because that is not being done, we have Anna Hazare’s movement. It is voice of all the people who have either voted against their current MP or did not vote at all. It is a perfectly legitimate voice in our democratic system. In fact, it is filling a much needed vaccum or corrective to a serious lacunae in our parliamentary system. It is height of stupidity to call it tyranny of unelected, as Manish Tiwary did. In fact, so far we have been suffering from the tyranny of the elected. Or even, the unelected like Manmohan Singh, and to be more precise, defeated in popular Lok Sabha elections from New Delhi.

  2. balvinder says:

    our so called elected, often not on majority (being rarely getting above 50% vote), has been behaving like autocratic kings for the past 65 years. no wonder the dynastic ruling has already come into force in the name of democracy. how stupid it is that PMs CMs r not elected but nominated even before the holding of election. even @ grass root level party elections are never held. all major decisions are always left to be taken by party chiefs who is often empowered to do so, not democratically after debating or voting, but “unanimously”. all this neds to be changed. but the path seems to be difficult and long. but is achievable if likes of anna increase and so their public support.

  3. Pawan says:

    Shekhar, Civil society is not a threat to democracy – democracy does not exist. Civil society is bringing back democracy, which is only existing on paper and in talks.

  4. Dear Shekhar,
    Like most in this country, you too have a misplaced euphemism about the word, ‘Democracy”. Democracy ( Greek ) means unlimited majority rule. Demos- people, Kratos- to rule. This means that the majority may rule over the minority and the individual. This is against human nature fundamentally. Every Man by his nature necessarily requires freedom to produce whatever values he needs for life. His life is his primary concern. To sustain his life, he needs to have liberty to pursue goals, and having done that since he is not a ghost, needs the right of private property. Thus right to life, liberty, pursuit of happiness and private property are the fundamental individual rights. There can be no right to life without the right to private property.
    The right to private property is the first casualty in a Democracy as the majority may decide to take away his property by a law which constitutes an act of force.
    So when each man needs these fundamental rights for his proper survival on this earth as decided by his nature, then individual rights become universal. He will than interact with other man on the basis of trade. The only political system that recognizes this principle is Laissez faire capitalism. A constitutional Republic and NOT a DEMOCRACY is the proper form of government. However for this Man has to discover the proper code of ethics or morality which is consonant with his nature.

  5. pawan kumar singh says:

    Sir i am pawan kumar singh from motihari(east champaran) bihar. mai bhi anna je se sahmat hu lekin jo tarika hai wo thoda galat hai kisi bhi baat ke liye adhna thik nahi hai. ham baat aage ki kar rahe hai agar kal kuchh aur log(R.S.S.) mil kar aise hi bole ki hamara constitution galat hai aur use aap 15 din me badlo to koi bhi goverment kya karegi. anna je aur unke commitee ke logo ko bil pass kar wana chahiye lekin winter satra tak sansad ke. waise mai to ek chhota baccha hu 22 sal ka aur student hu ll.b ka laekin mai ek chij bolna chahuna ki unke support me jo aaj bhid hai delhi me usme adhik student hai KYA SARE JAN LOK PAL AUR GOVER MENT KI LOKPA KO JANTE HAI bus bhid me halla karna thik nahi hai.

    AAJ corruption sare jagah hai village se le kar central tak d.m, s.p, mantri, ek cleark sab khate hai jinko jitna milta hai ya jo jis layak hai.
    ISKO KHATM KARNE LIYE SAARE LOGO KO SAMAJ KO AAGE AANA HOGA APNI MENTLITI KO CHANGE KARNA HOGA. MAI TO APNA RAY DIYA PLZ SIR NARAJ NAHI HONA SIR.
    AND LAST ME
    HAPPY JANMASHTMI.
    PAWAN KUMAR SINGH
    9472272734

  6. Kishor Butani says:

    After 65 years of independence, 70% of our population lives with just Rs 20/day. People have no access to clean water, basic education, basic medical, justice to exist and equality. We so called educated people can debate for weeks, months and years. Today 36 families controls 1/3rd of country’s GDP. I am of the strong opinion and feel sorry to say that democracy in its present form has miserably failed in India. We are absolutely responsible for this pathetic condition of our country where black money florishes and corruption is considered as part of normal life. Sorry, this is not the India of Gandhi’s dream. My 84 years father told me this morning that it is the wave of change. Enough is enough. Sometimes even I feel ashamed to say that I belong to a country which has created the civilized society.

  7. Harb says:

    WOW, what an inspired and to the point article you have written Shekhar Ji. People discovered Shekhar through your films but as I could not hear so could not enjoy those films to that extent I have rediscovered you today through this article.

    I may not agree that democracy is for ever for all things in nature go in cycles so sooner or later its time to once again give way to any other form of government will come but that does not deflect from the importance of your article for the present, for the present movement of Anna Hazare and may be for the comparatively immediate future of India.

  8. Ann Hazare might have struck a chord in the rational thought process of Indians. However without a code of ethics or morality, a tirade against corruption will be ill sustained. In logistical terms, it will be unmamanageable. As an example, all major communicable diseases like Small pox were eradicated by preventive inoculation and not expensive treatment. Therefore the right and proper way to eliminate corruption is a complete separation of the State and economy in the same way as the separation of the Church/ Temple and the state.

  9. Pankaj Gupta says:

    The movement is not undermining but is strengthening the democracy. Its only a delay or divide tactic of the Govt. They tried to discredit Anna by leveling false allegation against him in front of the whole nation. But failed miserably. They did everything possible to not let this Anshan happen. Now, they are shielding themselves behind the walls of Rule book and old rhetoric of Parliament supermacy. The same rule book is torn every moment by them on the name of their being VIPs. That is only for ordinary citizens. To make the movement weak by raging debates that are far from ground. The crux of the matter is that all political parties are united in not letting a strong bill pass through parliament which can later become a noose around their own neck. But i am fully optimistic that the way Team Anna is leading the agitation , nobody can ignore the voices now. It is happening everywhere even in small town like kurukshetra. And Govt shouldn’t be mistaken that the people don’t understand the fine differences between their and jan lok pall bill. I am amazed at the clarity of people about the difference between the two bills. Even among the rural masses. This is unprecedented. Just need to wake up the MPs at their own battle ground by sitting at dharnas in front of their houses and forcing them to listen to peoples voices. Amen !!

  10. orupavam says:

    Our Govts are not formed by the Majority citizens votes!! For egs the current govt itself is formed by just 37.22 citizens votes/opinion…What about the opinion of the 62.78% citizens?? And they are saying JanLokPal bill is against DEMOCRACY..FunnY!!

  11. sunil varma says:

    I agree in complete, and the fight is not for the lokpal bill it is for an institution which has the wherewithal to fight corruption. It is also clear why the Govt is opposing it. Their situation is akin to asking a carceral soul to pick his garrotter’s hatchet. I am convinced if left to the GOVT (any one in Power) this bill will never see the light of the day.

  12. Sujoy Dutta says:

    Sir,
    I fully agree with your views…..the govt is forgetting that the govt is of the PEOPLE, for the PEOPLE, by the PEOPLE….they simply seem that once elected they are above the People of India….
    the govt has never dreamt of dealing with so many aspirational, energetic, entrepreneural, technologically advanced youths…..
    however, for the movement to be successful i would like to give full credit to Facebook, twitter and other similar social networking sites besides Sri Anna Hazare for leading the movement and Sri Arvind Kejriwal, Ms Kiran Bedi and the Bhushans to assisst him aptly and offcourse to the so called middle class population to who have come out of their shcackles all out to support the cause…yes we need to cleanse the society and the country on non violent ways….this may well be treated as an example of non violent movement in the days to come….perhaps atleast we shall be proud off when our children would read about the meovement some 20 years down the line.

  13. Mayank Mathur says:

    Do our representatives know what we need or what we want?They just vanish in thin air after the elections.Let people be united,let them tell what they want.
    From the legal prespective,let me give an example.Section 17 subsection (2) specifically provides that lokpal cant investigate in any matter against a M.P. of taking bribe to vote or speak in parliament.Now do you know,what is the main source of income of our representatives?

  14. Raj says:

    Its good to hear from you that you support the people anger against corruption. Some of our intellectuals and the political class are completely guilty of not reading the people’s pulses. I am amazed by some of the columnist who all of a sudden have realized the supremacy of the Parliament, never mind the infinite numbers of words that they had put in criticizing the member of parliaments and their deeds. This is sheer hypocrisy. I feel these people are jealous, they feel how can an ordinary army truck driver, a rural activist – some of the words used to describe Anna Hazare – can influence so many people in their just fight against corruption. What these columnist have failed to achieve in their lifetime, Anna has done it in only few days.

  15. There is therefore no threat to anybody in a proper form of Government that is a Republic. Democracies from ancient times have had a short life and a violent death. In the words of the American founding fathers, Democracies are morally improper and impractical. They always deteriorate result in a civil war or a dictatorship. This is what we had with the arbitrary laws, preventive arrests, looting of private property. The answer is not to extend the scope of Democracy but to throw it out altogether and bring in the only ideal form of Government, “A constitutional Republic”. To explain the differences between the various forms of government, I refer you to this film. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFXuGIpsdE0

  16. neeraj says:

    The active role of civil society or say civil right activists will only stregthen the democracy. I saute to you shekhar ji for this wonderful and insightful article.

  17. mittal says:

    I agree!

  18. Harb says:

    I think the following two posts of mine do full justice to your supporting of Anna Hazare. These in a way show personality of Anna Hazare in a grander perspective:

    http://www.bigtamasha.com/2011/08/anna-at-rajghat-bigtamasha-commentary.html

    http://www.bigtamasha.com/2011/08/bharat-ratna-for-anna.html

  19. davidbelowed says:

    Dear All,
    Capitalism is not the cause of black markets and corruption. Scarcity of capital is the cause. When there is a shortage of wealth we cannot prevent corruption. Where the population is large and wealth scarce, people find ways and means to own wealth; they care little for the right ways and means. If you want to do away with corruption, then stop worrying about corruption, because corruption is a byproduct.
    We have nothing to do with it. But all the politicians, all the saints, are busy fighting corruption. They say, “We are determined to end corruption.” But the real problem is different — it is lack of wealth. Corruption is the natural consequence of poverty. If there are a thousand persons here and there is food enough only for ten, do you think there will be no attempts at procuring food through stealing?
    Bribery, corruption and black marketing only prove the fact that there are too many people and too little goods. We refuse to understand this simple fact. Corruption is not a disease, it is just a symptom of a disease which is deep-rooted. When a man has a fever, it is said that he is “down with fever”. Fever itself is taken for the disease. But in reality fever is a symptom, an indication of some deep disorder in the physiology of the man who is running a temperature. Similarly, corruption is a symptom of a social disease — poverty.
    But the politician and the priest believe that corruption can be ended without caring for production and population control. They say that God is sending more and more men to this earth. If God is responsible for our increasing population, then he is the most corrupting factor today, because corruption grows with the growing population. We have to restrict, even to stop this ever-flowing gift of God. We have to tell him, “Enough is enough; we don’t need more men. And if you send more, then give to each one of them ten acres of land and a factory to work with.”
    People are not immoral, as the priests and politicians would have us believe. It is the situation that is immoral. No man is immoral. Really, man is neither moral nor immoral, but the situation is immoral. And a person can be moral in an immoral situation if he strives hard, but then his whole life will be wasted in the very effort. He will not be able to do anything else. He will somehow save himself from being immoral. He will, with tremendous effort, suppress the temptation to steal; that is all he will achieve. So it is a question of changing the situation, because really the situation is immoral. No amount of anti-corruption campaigns are going to succeed if the situation is not changed. But if production grows and wealth is plentiful, corruption will go by itself. Nobody will steal if there is an abundance of wealth in the society.
    Dr. David Timothy.

  20. The only job of a proper government is to act as a policeman to protect our rights. The only justifiable arms or branches of the government are the courts to settle disputes amongst men, Police to arrest criminals and the Army to guard us from foreign invaders. There can be fixed body of law which restrains the government to these functions leaving the people to produce. Laws cannot take away Man’s individual rights.

  21. Anil says:

    Article reflects reality, true understanding of people in India. However it is not just a middle class uprising. By calling it so many people may not open their mind, opinion for just not to get counted in middle class.
    In reality as well, it is not limited to middle class.
    From KG to PG, from auto-driver to Pilot, from worker to chairman all are involvd.
    I am also following you on twitter and would like to thanks you for your continuous guidance.

    Thanks.

  22. Alkesh Kansal says:

    Well written Sir.. I will like to draw attention of my countrymen that why the govt is turning deaf ears to our demands. Most likely the reason behind should be they (ruling party) knows that nothing can outpower them except elections which will be held after very long 3 years. rather accepting people’s demand can cut short their term to mere 6 months. I want to raise some serious questions about the accountability of our politicians? Mere going to elections after much looting the country for good 5 years? Even then they can win spending money ( a few percent of looted in 5 years) .
    So what if there is so hue and cry in the public?? There is much scope in changing our electoral system to make them accountable even much before the elections.

  23. Ravi G says:

    I think corrupt politician are the biggest threat to our beloved country, and civil society is posing a great threat to these corrupt politicians and bureaucrats, hence they dont want Anna’s version of JLPB passed.
    Jai Hind,
    Jai Bharat Mata Ki.

  24. Ram Varma says:

    On the contrary: it would be a boon, as we have come to realize now through the current movement! The present Government has indeed floundered in handling the situation and it has only strengthened Anna’s team of followers. More than a break down of the democratic system, I would say that this is streamlining the system and aligning it along the proper tracks.
    The fight is not against the government but against corruption, against the system. The sooner the UPA realize it, the better, else it would become the “Un-progressive Political Avatar” of all time!

  25. Arun Prabhu says:

    Hits the nail on its head! Our reluctance to change means a first mover is often criticized, even when s/he’s right. Indians should shake off their argumentative, analysis-paralysis approach to issues political – most importantly, get off their backsides to support a true cause. The right means will then evolve – as you rightly put Shekar. Kudos

  26. Omen says:

    Excuse Me Sir! It is this Civil Society that make the government and member of parliament. If they can make the parliament they can also make the decision to make the correct law. It was this parliament that did not make the law for over 40-50 years and now when we make it they call it threat to democracy? Don’t underestimate the knowledge of the citizens, they know what is right and wrong, has there been a mass movement of this kind for a wrong cause?

  27. Rahul says:

    This is the most enlightening article that i have read over the power given to civil society…

  28. Alkesh Kansal says:

    We, the people of India has started thinking and feeling like a slave to politicians. What an irony that We vote to choose such a bunch of dacoits to rule and loot us. Now though India has awakened and know his rights still we are not left with any option to choose it from less or more corrupt.

  29. Pawan says:

    please read the link above.

    I agree this is evolution in Democracy. Or call it democracy being re-instated.

    https://www.facebook.com/notes/pawan-kumar-sharma/united-we-stand-divided-we-fall/10150265445160208

    love

    Pawan

  30. Preojet says:

    I deeply from my bottom of my heart respect Anna hazare ji, he single handedly spearheaded the fight against corruption & has ignited fire in common man’s heart. He changed the mindset of the people bt he is adamant on his demands. We all want corruption free India but not keeping our democracy at stake. Everyone in democracy has the right too express his/her views but can’t force the government to adopt & implement it. Corruption is a issue which need special attention & will not go in a day nor it has come.

  31. Devendra says:

    Thank you for writing such a boiling article and to support anna ji…

  32. Prashant Narayan says:

    i am a 27 year old middle class guy, my dad’s retired from a job, my mom’s a teacher and we have a bajaj chetak and a maruti alto.as i said quintessential middle class. i’ll just put across my reply in easy to read points

    a) the youth(we) have a huge identity crisis, we are always dissatisfied with our jobs (unlike our parents who’ve known the value of duty) we change jobs every year, we are in constant need of an alibi to feel important, so all this participation in this movement etc is the easiest thing to do , as easy as fwding a joke on sms. and spending a sunday at the movies. hell we even dont have to pay to protest. and i know for sure we dont value our time so much.

    b) anna hazare is 2 generations older than the average indian today, i dont think he represents me, i dont think the congress represents me either, but so doesn’t anna. the congress atleast puts up it’s hand to run the government. anna is just having a fling.

    the media and eminent personalities like you should stop thinking for us, and it’s time for the working class to go do a good day’s work, feel happy about it, be honest to oneself and then look outside at corruption and stuff.

    gandhiji fought a mindset, anna is just fighting a symptom, and making a big deal out of it.

  33. Shalini says:

    I absolutely agree with each word in this article. The government, Parliament etc can never be above the people.

  34. “India’s endemic corruption is not a cultural imperative. It is the result of a slow, unresponsive, antiquated system that is at odds with challenges of Modernity.”
    …. Very rightly said.

    It is not that we support Anna’s Janlokpal bill or Anna or Govt. version…..It should be ‘how we address need of change in every system, effecting present of masses with scope to accommodation of measurable future?”

    – Vishal

  35. mrudula says:

    Brilliant! tks for posting

  36. Mones says:

    Indian revolution was unlike the russian in india post independence landlords and other people who were affluent joined indian politics & used it for their convinience slowly it became legacy and made this …there r some countries in world which have no written constitution indian constitution should be according to people of india not usa or uk.

  37. Nice article Sir but please do not term corruption as cancer as there is no cure for cancer.
    Corruption can be eradicated. We are on the right path

  38. Varun says:

    Sirji, bill toh padh lo ek baar. Idologies are alright. The intent might be right but Jan Lokpal Bill can not be the panacea. Here’s the bill: http://is.gd/PaR7vP. Have a look at the absolute powers to the watchdog. Can anyone guarantee that someone appointed by a bunch of unaccountable ‘civil society’ can be incorruptible or lead us to a future like that of Pakistan or Myanamar?

  39. rajan mehrotra says:

    Shekhar,
    I hv watched u on diffrent platforms snce last few mnths n m sure tat the tym has come tat u look fr a still larger canvass than cinema n tat is PEOPLE. Ur thots r logical n sincere and I hope u find a medium to reach d ppl acorss the length n breadth of this country n they can feel, see n respond to yr sincerity.

    Jai Ho!!

  40. Rakesh says:

    The countdown to acceptance of jan lokpal bill has began.As a citizen of this country its our duty to differentiate between justice and injustice.personally no matter what i want to see jan lokpal bill type solution. once we have this bill passed successfully we can further think about rampant corruption is various other fields like media,arts,sports etc.

  41. Rajiv Mishra says:

    I agree with each and every word of yours article. I know that JanLokPal is not a complete solution, but I believe its a step in right direction. and yes Thanks for supporting the JanLokPall bill.

  42. Ameya Nisal says:

    Mr.Shekhar Kapur,

    WIth all due respect, I think your thoughts and support are slightly blended with a mix of government and corruption which seems slightly misg-guided and biased.

    I do not think that the public coming on streets are the people who are only educated and who do not care about the votes. These people are the victims of corruption, irrespective of the class, caste, sex or social status. These are the people who have been encountered in several instances ‘daily’ with corruption in every other aspect.

    Speaking about constitution, and democracy fundamentally I would like to point out some concepts of democracy, being a economics post-graduate.
    If democracy is ‘by’ the people, ‘of’ the people and ‘for’ the people, then they surely enjoy the right to even amend the rights which are in the welfare and interest of the society at large.

    I really do not think there in any point debating about dome unforeseen consequences before even presenting the bill in the parliament. If the government is shying away even from presenting a public consensus of few lakh people, forget about their acumen and ability to tackle the millions and their social and security issues.

    The people who would protest to this bill or even try to thin about the amendments surely have reservations about the back-door entry to get work done, which would in-turn breed the next generation of corruption. The corruption has to be eradicated from the mindset, which would be the biggest driver to pull in the reforms to the fullest extent.

    The uproar of the public is not ‘Anna Hazare’ as a personality, but a ray of hope to bring in revolution in the system.
    How to take this revolution is the challenge which should be willingly accepted by the government. There is no question of an opposition party or the ruling party. Everyone will be grilled in it for a unethical performance.

    That is what would bring a complete paradigm shift in the functionality and create a completely effective system for the ‘true’ welfare of the society.

    Jai Hind!

    -Ameya Nisal

  43. Neeraj Pant says:

    I am totally aligned to your views, Shekhar. Civil society reponse that is being manifested in response to corruption is like how a human system responds to an antigen in which enters our body. Therefore ww must keep our body strong enough to keep fighting this antigen until its dies otherwise we might succumb to its virulence. The politicians have taken their sustinance as their birthright hence they are avoiding this potential threat (jan lok pal bill). This so called constitutional process is not carved on stone. Even if it is, it is now time to burry the stone. Let there be a true Governance by the people. Jai Bharat!

    Neeraj

  44. Anubhav Bhargava says:

    I agree with you sir completely. Can you throw some light on certain apprehensions about the Jan Lokpal bill too.
    Like it is a Superman like body. It will have immense power. In a way it will become a autocratic institution in itself.

  45. MindChirp says:

    Civil society’s voice is definitely not a threat and in fact a boon. PM and government should thank Teams Anna in highlighting pulse of the nation in a non-violent manner & expedite things. Everything has a life and ages with time. One must ring out the old and ring in the new. Laws too.

    “Parliament has the supreme power” is being quoted with arrogance by the government. That needs to change since power comes with responsibility which must not be shirked.

    Last but not the least, most important contribution of this movement may be more a bill or a low. It is the people & the youth becoming an active participant instead of passive ones. And hopefully a streamlined process for civil society to participate on continuous basis in making laws during the 5 years.

  46. Pradyumna Sahasrabhojanee says:

    Government sponsored responses to Anna’s Agitation have finally brought to the front very fundamental issues regarding our Democracy and its functioning.
    There is an urgent need for public debate & referendum on these fundamental issues…
    1) Do people believe that the Parliament really represents the people and serves their interests?
    2) Is our electoral system a cleverly manipulated sham that favours the ruling clans / political parties?
    3) Would direct elections without party nominations; and a Party-less National Government directly responsive to the people’s aspirations serve the National Interest in a better manner?
    4) Is the present form of our Democracy a new Avtaar of former feudal & colonial regimes rolled into one deadly concoction?
    5) Is the Government’s Reform Agenda free from influence of the ‘Foreign Hand’? Does’nt IMF control the nation’s economy through its blue eyed boys in the Planning commission?
    6) Is exploitation in the name of ‘Development’ in the long-term National Interest? Is the uninterrupted sustainability and the very survival of the Indian Civilization at stake because of this?
    Team Ann’a efforts and public response to their agitation have given us a hope to tackle such fundamental questions. Honest deliberations on these questions are urgently needed to cleanse and reform the system!
    From: Pradyumna Sahasrabhojanee, Email: Sahasrabhojanee@gmail.com

  47. MindChirp says:

    Last but not the least, most important contribution of this movement may be more than passing a BILL or a LAW. It is the people & the youth becoming an active participant instead of passive ones. And hopefully a streamlined process for civil society to participate on continuous basis in making laws during the 5 years.

  48. Hazaaron mein Hazare,
    Lakhon mein Hazare,
    Croreroon mein Hazaare,

    HIndustaan Mein Hazaare,

    Per, Kya her Hindustani Mein hai Hazare?
    Kya Aap hain Hazare?

    This Is My Question,

  49. sayantan mukherjee says:

    may b its a threat , may b bot ..bt i luv ths threat ..bcoz…its a threat to democracy, its a threat to king of democrats..d so calld{politicians}..

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