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Public Anger and Contempt Brewing in India
|by Dr. Subhash Kapila|
India’s public mood today cannot be said to be vastly different from the anger and rage that has generated the massive political upheavals in the Middle East. In the Middle East it was not ideology or zeal of Islamists that has triggered the protests both peaceful and violent. What triggered political upheaval there was simply pent-up anger and frustrations with the rulers politically, economic woes and rampant corruption.
The Indian public mood today is very much the same. Resultantly, anger and contempt is brewing. Going by media coverage and the pervading sense that pervades blogspots all over India, one gets the impression that both the ‘Great Renunciator’ and ‘Mr. Clean’ have lost their iconic sheen and their acts of omission or commission being questioned.
Political misgovernance is very much evident from the fact that everyday corruption scams keep cascading out of the Congress Government’s closets with no break in sight. The Indian public is in a questioning mood as to how all this massive corruption could flourish under the very noses of the Congress President and the Congress Prime Minister who swore that corruption would be wiped out. The Congress President has not taken any lead to take drastic actions through her nominated Prime Minister for demonstrable drastic actions against corruption at high political levels. It is natural then for allegations of Bofors, Quatoracchi, and now Hasan Ali to start dominating public discussion space. And now the corruption trail extends to 2G, 3 G SCAMS, CWG scams and what not and in which the PMO is increasingly coming under public scrutiny.
The Prime Minister looked ‘politically diminished’ when he virtually pleaded in his recent TV live interaction with senior journalists that he was himself honest but that he could not do much about corruption arising from compulsions of ‘coalition politics’ Was he passing the buck to the Congress President? Would this imply that the Indian public is now perpetually condemned to suffer political corruption because coalition politics would no longer be the exception, but the rule?
The Indian public is extremely angry and contemptible of the Congress Prime Minister that as an internationally recognized economist he has not come to grips with back breaking inflation and unending rise in prices of daily needs of the common man. Where has the ‘Aam Admi’ and how has he been allowed to disappear from the Congress Government’s political and social consciousness? Is it because the next General Elections are nearly three years away?
Or is it that rising inflation agricultural pricings and foodgrains exports and imports are also captives of coalition politics? Thousands of tons of foodgrains rot every year in Government warehouses and which the Supreme Court observed could be distributed to the poor, continue to rot away, as the Prime Minister expresses his Government’s inability to organize such distribution.
The Indian public because of the political misuse of investigating agencies like the CBI either to slow down or soft pedal investigations on corruption, or indulge in selective investigations prompted by political considerations ,has lost faith in this investigating institution. It is increasingly being perceived as a compliant tool of the Government.
The Congress Government for all practical purposes has today lost the Indian public’s confidence that it can provide good political governance and sound and effective management of India’s economy which could ensure a decent life for the average Indian citizen, free from economic miseries. The average Indian citizen is enraged when the political class votes exponential raises in their own salaries and perks and remain immune to the economic woes of the common Indian man.
Cynicism in the Indian public mood at this gross misgoveranace is giving way to anger, frustration and contempt for the Government in New Delhi and that is not a healthy sign contextually.
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03/03/2011 09:44 AM