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PM has his way!
|by Dr. Rajinder Puri|
Readers will recall that on December 2nd it was stated in these columns that a silent war between the Prime Minister and Mrs. Sonia Gandhi was under way. I wrote:
Yesterday the PM in his first press conference in over a year officially announced that he would not become Prime Minister if the UPA returns to power after the general election. Clearly a compromise has been worked out between 10 Janpath and 7 Race Course Road to the latter’s advantage. The PM criticized Mr. Narendra Modi’s candidature for PM but fell short of naming Mr. Rahul Gandhi as his successor. The reason for the delay most likely is that the Congress is pursuing a new strategy that necessitates tacit agreement with Mr. Arvind Kejriwal of Aam Admi Party (Aap). Only after that might Mr. Gandhi take the plunge.
The possible hitch is Mr. Kejriwal’s avowed aim to fight corruption. Would he be content with cosmetic moves against UPA corruption or actually go for the jugular and name top leaders in specific cases? As it is Mr. Kejriwal’s stated resolve against corruption can prove to be hollow regardless of how he acts. Thus far the election campaigns of both Mr. Kejriwal and Mr. Modi have exhibited a very high degree of publicity and communication skills. There has been substantial input of international expertise in both campaigns. This should not surprise in an increasingly global political system. But any meaningful or innovative policy formulation to address major political problems has yet to emerge in either leader’s campaign. That is why Mr. Kejriwal’s resolve to expose corruption may not amount to much even if sincerely implemented.
Regretfully one must conclude that Mr. Kejriwal like his counterparts in other parties has given insufficient thought to the failure of curbing corruption which arises not from inadequate laws but from refusal to implement existing laws.
This happens because these institutions are controlled by the very government which may be accused of corruption. These institutions need to be liberated from government control. How will Lokpal or Lok Ayukta be liberated when they are appointed by the same functionaries that appoint the CVC or CBI and are accountable to the same sources? Unless the CBI is made a constitutional body under charge of a President or Governors in states appointed by the President and accountable to the same, there will never be an effective fight against corruption. Without such systemic reform there will never be effective lasting governance.
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