Aadarniya Anna Hazareji, I’m confused

Anna Hazare has been sitting on a fast-unto-death crusade against corruption and in support of the JanLokPal bill as against the LokPal bill suggested by the Congress-led UPA2 govt. In a initial disclaimer I’d like to state that I have respect for Anna Hazare and this is in no way meant to belittle his efforts or his life’s work.

But I’m confused.

What exactly is this ‘movement’ for? 1 of 3 reasons have been given so far:

This is a movement against corruption

Ok.. Then what is the desired end result of this movement? You want a corruption-free India, so do I. But what is the mechanism to get there? Sitting in protest at a junction does not cure corruption just as lighting candles does not cure terrorism. You can ask the ‘youth’ of India to show support, take responsibility, etc but without a mechanism, your ‘voice’ will drown out as soon as the IPL starts.

FYI.. If by chance you manage to get Sharad Pawar to quit politics, let me know, I’ll be your lifelong member.

We need civil society to help draft the JanLokPal bill

Fine, go ahead. The govt. will probably will let you help draft the JanLokPal Bill and include all the amendments you want. You’ll make an ‘ideal’ JanLokPal bill (I doubt it but what’s to stop us from wishing) but you still need to pass it in parliament. It does not become a law until a simple majority of those 543 POLITICIANS agree to it. BTW you guys have done a great start in getting their support by adopting your, ‘this is a non-political, saare neta chor hai’ stance. Best of luck getting their support. To pass this bill you’ll need either the NDA+Left support or the Congress+allies+left support or a consensus of Congress+NDA. You have yourself kicked away hopes of the NDA support by accusing them of political mileage. The govt. seems to think you’re blackmailing them so the Congress isn’t going to go through it easy.

The correct way to go about this would have been. Draft a good bill, use all the ‘civil society’ studs you need, but make a good constitutional, rational bill that does not create any Supermen. Also, please as a personal request also look at what cost you’re going to add to the exchequer. Second, begin to garner party support. Talk to senior individuals in the Congress, the BJP, the Left and get their individual support for the bill. It’s going to be political, you can’t get it without being political. Once you have support from individuals in different parties, it becomes very difficult to ignore the bill or pass a weaker bill. That would probably get your amendments and the bill to pass.

We need civil society to be the ombudsman committee itself?

I don’t think that’s smart. Many of our ‘civil society’ studs may not be directly politically affiliated but are heavily opinionated in the favour of one political ideology or the other. This ombudsman may be independent eventually but is not likely to be neutral while investigating graft against the different party politicians in India. There are several other issues that @realitycheckind has very well highlighted in his post, so I won’t repeat it here.

Extra note:

I have a feeling India has grown a generation of Search Engine Optimization professionals. Everyone are such experts on buzzwords. Turn on TimesNow and listen to what the people of India are saying about this movement. You’re very likely to hear the following, but unlikely to hear one logical position articulated.

  • Come forward
  • Civil Society
  • Take responsibility for the nation
  • War against corruption
  • Netas have looted the nation
  • Civil participation
  • Peoples movement
  • Take the nation forward
  • CHANGE (Hail Obama!)
  • Make Jantar Mantar, India’s Tahrir square
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One thought on “Aadarniya Anna Hazareji, I’m confused

  1. True, there’s confusion galore. People supporting it all over the internet & gali nukkads is just herd mentality. Most are unaware of what’s happening.

    As you mentioned, I have a lot of respect for Anna Hazare & his work too, but it’s equally essential for people to make an attempt to understand what they’re supporting instead of behaving like modern day Gandharis. Most of us would certainly support an anti-corruption movement, but its implementation is what is of utmost importance here; some options that you’ve already touched upon. Firsty, I feel Hazare played a smart tactical move by initiating his move just at a time when the nation is united post the World Cup frenzy. This way, the foundation was laid out for him and he put forth his cause and garnered the support he needed. Wise move there! Now he has millions of supporters, majority of whom don’t know the basics of the bill.

    Power is a double edged sword and needs to be handled very carefully. As in any democracy, currently power is shared among the political, judicial, investigative powers which can be used as a defense for evading responsibility. But as per an article that I came across recently, this way it’s a guarantee that the system is not at the mercy of a few good men. This bill will bypass the existing system and concentrate immense power in just one seemingly robust institution that is above all and we, as people, will display extraordinary faith in the virtue of those people that exert this power. Also, there will be no way to ensure the fairness of this institution. How do we know it’ll be non-corruptible?
    Don’t intend to sound like a cynic here; but post all the drama & hysteria for any good cause, the way of execution is what is imperative.

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