Friday, 16 November 2007

"Cholbe Na!"

So the CPI(M) cadres have finally recaptured Nandigram. And reports of a gang rape that took place have been confirmed--the victim has been medically examined and has filed a case. However, according to the Left parties, whereas the Gujarat riots justified a discussion in Parliament, the same does not apply to Nandigram, which remains a state subject! The winter session in Parliament promises to be a hot one--what with a discussion of the 123 agreement and the BJP’s determination to talk about Nandigram in the House. What will really hurt the CPI(M)’s pro-minority image is the fact that the Muslim population of Nandigram has been worst-hit by the recent disturbances. I wonder how they will cry foul over the 123 agreement now--the main plank of their arguments against the treaty has been the insinuation that India’s Muslim population would be disturbed by such a close alliance with a power that is seen to be fighting Muslim fundamentalists.

The real reason why Indian politics and Indian politicians are objects of such derision amongst the middle class is because they are incapable of using a good argument, a well-drawn up policy or a well-executed project to make a point--they’d rather employ goons and lathis to decide the issue. Whether it’s Delhi circa 1984 or Gujarat circa 2002 or Nandigram circa 2007, it’s the same story--beat, kill, bully and rape the population into submission. Don’t build roads, schools or hospitals, don’t dig wells, don’t encourage industrialization--don’t do a thing and just force the people to vote for you time after time, never mind if they have to sell their children to make a living. What has the political class done in sixty years? What has it accomplished? Nothing! And they expect the aam aadmi to be grateful for this--to be beaten, killed or worse by his rulers? Most of our major insurgencies would never have arisen had our politicians done the jobs they’re paid to do--organize a proper land distribution policy in areas where land ownership is restricted and encourage industry, instead of siphoning off funds that they stash into Swiss bank accounts.

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I work as a freelance editor and writer in New Delhi. 


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