Social Activist Anna Hazare and Yoga guru Baba Ramdev will sit on a day-long fast in Delhi tomorrow to mark their protest against issues of corruption in the nation and black money held abroad by rich Indians.
Breaking News! The Biggest Daily Reality Show Ended 31st December 2011.
With the beginning of 2012 ends the sensation of Anna Hazare and the Anti-Corruption movement seems over. What was that all about ? Why suddenly some Yoga Guru stood against corruption and got the nation provoked and vanished from news after fleeing from the stage at the Ram Lila Maidan , Delhi ? What happened to the nation suddenly after that ? Throughout 2011,Anna Hazare was the only topic, go anywhere. No peace of mind for full-time religious alcoholics like me and my friends, too. We would prefer talking about corruption and about Anna over our favourite Heart-Break stories of life?
All seems dead suddenly. It all started almost in the second quarter of 2011 and died with the 2012 New-Year celebration. Lokpal Bill ? What is that all about ? Corrupt Politicians ? Who are they ? Are they Indians ? 2011 showed all those Facebook pages and fans and tweets packed with Anti-Corruption buzz and urban India explaining their concern and support to Anna and Ramdev Baba.
Come on folks , we were watching the Biggest Reality Show of India, scripted and produced by our very own “Breaking News Channels”. Corruption was an integral part of Indian Administration since India was formed. What was not, is the concept of “Money Minting Reality Shows” shown on television.Advertisements pay bigtime and when MTV can why not the News Channels ?
Corruption is a part of us and we have adjusted with it quite well. We vote for our politicians even after knowing they are competing to fulfil their desires of making uncountable money. We are forced to choose between worse and worst everytime and we vote praying worse does’nt turn worst. Its been more than 60 years and we are experienced now, aren’t we ? We have grown up watching our dads or uncles bribing the cops , caught for not carrying drivers license and many a times even just to avoid harassment. We have seen dads collecting money somehow to manage donations for our school. We have seen our mommy paying extra bucks to the gas-cylinder guy for giving cylinder in “black” and who can forget the blackiers selling Bollywood Blockbuster Movie tickets ?. We are born learning basics of computers on pirated Windows version and as our knowledge progresses we keep looking for various websites offering crack codes for various softwares for our computers and laptops and not to forget the free song downloading sites. How can we forget the CDs and DVDs for 15 bucks for 5 movies? We have heard our grandfathers discussing tax-evading ways with his chartered accountant. Bribing has been as simple as breathing, in our country and we call these attributes of “Street-Smart Chap”.
The New Reality Show of Anti-Corruption made us forget our basics. It made villains out of those 400 plus Daring Indians who made it to the parliament. We made them our leaders. We made our politicians achieve their dreams. A politician joins “Dirty Politics” while we prefer keeping ourselves out of the dirt and prefer discussing all that over a cup of tea during free time. Had these politicians not been there, think of an evening , when guests pay a visit ! Absolutely no topic to share thoughts . How long can you talk about the weather and global-warming? It is our corrupt system which has given us so much to talk in public gatherings. Thanks to the political leaders, they do not even mind us back-biting them after we ourselves choose them to fulfil their desires to open bank accounts in Switzerland. But this reality show certainly made them villains. Someone in the parliament screamed Anna is made by the Media and supported by the Corporate houses ( As Media is a Corporate House itself) and since then I realize we were watching a Reality Show made by our News Channels. Some 400 plus men in the parliament struggled their lives out to be where they are and suddenly some old x-army man with few opportunists backing him up comes and declares a war against these Parliamentarians ? Well the Anti-Corruption Movement Reality Show seems to have fetched its producers enough money and hence they decided to end it and now we talk everything but Anna and his movement. It is time to move on. Anyways winters bring in fresh but repeated news of accidents because of fogs in North India. They have enough workload. Turning on the News channels, rarely one feels like changing them as they too have become interesting channels and lot better than those daily soaps starting from the alphabet “K” with repeated vamp haunting into some repeated honest people’s lives for wealth. At least our News Channels understand when to create the sensation , how long to continue and how to fade it away and replace it with other stories.
Playing with emotions is what entertainment is all about and in India it started with daily soaps and continues big time with News Channels which writes its own script, chooses a Hero all by itself(like Anna and Ramdev) , chooses the supporting cast(Arvind,Kiran Bedi,Prashant Bhushan etc) and crew and the villains(politicians with Swiss Bank Accounts) , shows us all the reality show and ends the story at its will , leaving us guessing. Well the Movie ” Anti-Corruption Movement in India ” got a huge appreciation and the script-writers and producers surely bagged a great chunk of money leaving the villains and the hero busy commenting against each other and the audience getting back to their normal lives. One may term it as the most successful reality show of 2011 or the biggest blockbuster daily soup, call it whatever , we as an audience had a great time watching the show and now we are back to work assuring ourselves Media will soon release some other “BREAKING NEWS”.
With Anna rising strong against Corruption Issue , in India, even the most hopeless Indian was forced to believe revolution ought to take place. Loud was the roar of Anna’s hunger-strike to pass the IAC recommended LokPal Bill and louder comes allegations against the Core Team Anna Members, one after the other !
It all started with Swami Agnivesh’s controversial tape where he was found back-biting his own Team , believed to be having a word with the Union Minister, over the phone. He tried getting away, giving excuses , which were baseless. The Media uncovered his reality.
Prashant Bhushan,one of the core team members of IAC(India Against Corruption) movement, faced serious criticisms, after he spoke his heart out about Kashmir. He was attacked by three people, at his office on the Supreme Court compound. Later it was learnt , one of the guy caught by the cops , was Indra Verma, leading Delhi unit of Sri Ram Sene. He was attacked because of his statement on Kashmir issue. Bhushan had, last month said in Varanasi that security forces should be withdrawn from Kashmir and a referendum be held to address the opinion of the Kashmiris.
Anna’s reactions to Prashant Bhushan’s statment were clearly indicating his discomfort. With the bold old man stating clearly, if need be , he would again dress-up as an Army, to fight for Kashmir , remaining intact with India.
Arvind Kejriwal , one of the most important members of Team Anna has been gheraod by controversies :
He was attacked by Jitendra Pathak , who threw a slipper at Kejriwal during a programme organised in Lucknow at the Jhulelal Park. Pathak explained, he has been following , Team Anna in their movement, so far and he noticed the diversification from core topics of the team and got furious and lost his temper. He ended up getting terminated from his job, after this incident. It is only him , who knows why he actually did so. Big deal, if the “Anti-Anna Team” has been behind this.
It is learnt, that Pathak, a former Congress Sewa Dal worker, has also wrote a letter addressing Anna, asking three questions and requesting satisfactory answers , to avoid himself going for undefinite, hunger-strike :
Why Anna remained silent when the Shiv Sena and MNS workers attacked and even killed north Indians, living in Mumbai ?
What he thinks of the violent attack on him(Pathak) by his (Anna’s)supporters when Pathak was trying to grab Kejriwal’s attention to ask him why the team members had failed to come out with convincing proof against the corruption charges levelled against them ?
Why Anna is not demanding action against Prashant Bhushan who wants yet another partition of India ?
Coming back to Kejriwal,on September 2, Kejriwal was served a notice by the I-T department, accusing him of violating bond conditions as his resignation from government service was still pending.As per the government, Kejriwal is still an Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer as the department has not accepted his resignation submitted in 2006.
The Income Tax Department, has issued a fresh notice asking Kejriwal to clear his dues of Rs 9 Lakhs, latest by the 27th of Oct’11, rejecting the reply of non-compliance from Kejriwal, in response to the first notice.
Again, it is no big deal, if this is pushed by the Government itself , which is the prime Anti- Anna Team, at present, after the loss at Hissar.
In between, two core members of the Team Anna, resigned. The first being, P.B. Rajagopal, the vice chairman of Gandhi Peace Foundation and the founding member of Ekta Parishad, which focuses on issues relating to right to livelihood of displaced people and the second Rajendra Singh, famous as the “waterman of India” and Magsaysay Award winner, known for his water-conservation efforts, in Rajasthan.
They found, Arvind Kejriwal sounded autocratic, in Hissar and Team Anna was going political and also declared they were forced to answer about decisions of Anna and the other team members, inspite of not being included while such decisions were taken. They marked lack of co-ordination and unclear dimensions of Team Anna, as the cause of their discomfort , to continue.
With latest proof of Kiran Bedi’s NGO presenting inflated bills for air ticket for a function she attended in Mumbai in 2009, it puts to question , if anyone is really worth trusting, in our country.
It was found by Headlines Today that, The Guild, an Air India employees’ union, organised a function on the International Women’s Day in Mumbai, in March 2009 and had invited Bedi. Headlines Today assessed an invoice for Rs. 31,000 sent by Flywell Travels for return ticket from Delhi to Mumbai. Bedi arrived in Mumbai from Pune and attended another function in Mumbai before leaving for Delhi.
Quite astonishing, the owner of the travel agency, Mr Anil Bal, also happens to be a co-trustee in Kiran Bedi’s NGO. Who knows, if the organisers of the other function, in Mumbai also paid for Bedi’s travel ?
All this has been revealed after Kiran Bedi’s explanation that the money(cheques), for her travel expenses were issued in the name of her NGO “India Vision Foundation ” and she would always let the organisers know , if she was traveling by economy class and also that the left-over money would always remain in the NGO fund, used for traveling to places , where organisers were unable to finance her travel. She also insisted, paying all left-over money, back to organisers, after the incident came into limelight.
Swami Agnivesh, who is no more the part of the Team Anna, has questioned , why the donations were going to Public Cause Research Foundation, led by Arvind Kejriwal(this foundation does not have names of major core team members including Anna) and there was yet no bank account for IAC(India Against Corruption), which is Arvind’s responsibility. He also claimed, that the Team is yet to show the balance-sheet of the 80lakhs collected, so far , by the IAC, which was promised to be on their website, for the public to have a look at.
Senior Congress Leader, Digvijay Singh has always been of the view that Anna is motivated by BJP and there has to be some connections, Anna or his team members, have with the RSS or BJP.
We , the commoners found all that a great leader should have , after the Media showed us, Anna sitting for hours , in front of Gandhi Samadhi and crying and wiping his tears. What do we conclude now ? Are we not left making guesses, as to who may be right ?
Is Anna wrong or his selections are (the Corruption topic he chose to raise or the Core Team Members) ?
Are these allegations worth closing eyes and considering that it is cooked-up by the Government ? While some surely sound cooked-up but are all of the issues unreal ?
Is Anna totally correct, in his views, if he disregards Prashant Bhushan’s statement on Kashmir ? Is Kashmir all about the dignity and integrity of our country and we have nothing to do with the people living there , who are under Army Rule, since ages ?
Who do we trust , if people like Kiran Bedi, accept charges of presenting inflated bills to organisers, just for another “cause” ? Is she the Robinhood of India, taking money from the rich (raising inflated bills on organisers, who can afford it) and claiming to use it for the poor(affording her travel, where organisers cannot afford so) ? is this right, even if the money would be refunded ? Is this ethical when someone like her, a Magsaysay award winner who gets 75% off on her air travel by Air India , raises inflated bill for a “right cause” ?
It is a fact that Swami Agnivesh is taking out his agitation on Team Anna after he got exposed and expelled from the Team but is it not right that Anna and Arvind Kejriwal were leading IAC, should have done their homework of opening an Account and maintaining financial update, on the website , long before, as promised ?
Ofcourse , Digvijay Singh’s criticisms do not carry weight , as he is from the Government but are his acquisitions totally baseless?
Was Anna selective about his Core Team or he too is a commoner who did not recognize the “masked-foxes”, joining hands ?
The Ship of “India Against Corruption” got its share of media-hype and was sailing well. It gave food , enough in quantity, to the Media Houses , so much that they are busy finding out flaws, everywhere(with the same Ship, which they were praising, before) to keep the “Breaking News ” sessions rocking! The question is – Will it sink and so will the Captain Anna Hazare or will the Captain rather throw the unwanted baggage of controversial people including Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi and may be more(Media knows it better) , who may drown not only the Ship of INDIA AGAINST CORRUPTION but also cease commoners, like us to trust anyone for the next two decades, to come and enlighten the intentions and confidence of Corrupts in our country.
A Vaastu expert claims that TEAM ANNA is facing problems like core committee members resigning or being beaten up in public has something to do with the Padmavati Guest House where Anna is residing at…. Do you believe in Vaastu to this extent? Is it really the Vaastu that is creating the problems or are there other factors behind it?
People, who stand up together for a cause, follow and support the movement through thick and thin suddenly want to do away with all the hard work. Doesn’t it smell like political motivation behind all this?
Was the ANNA movement politically motivated? Not that the UPA government is any saint, but doesn’t it seem like there may be other political implications behind the Anna movement?
Is LOKPAL really going to curb corruption in INDIA or will it simply shift the power base from the political groups to new power aspirants?
The bureaucracy, judiciary, corporates, media are also not clean from corruption… so who should we trust now?
Should common man, the Citizens of the country not change his attitude, think about others, think about the country and think about himself as well? The least may be what we can do for our-selves is stop generating BLACK MONEY by paying tax and stop bribing anyone. As charity begins at home, so does the commitment to get the society disciplined.
Should we not stop mal practices ourselves first before pointing fingers at others? All politicians are elected representatives and we are to blame to a large extent if they are corrupt. If we choose wrong clothes for ourselves, should we blame the clothes or our choice of it? We don’t even bother to check the background of people we vote for; is merely casting vote for the sake of it enough to save our country from the menace of poverty and corruption.
All we do is complain isn’t it? About the Roads, Infrastructure, pollution, and the quality of life as a whole. Do we even have the right to complain? Have we done enough? Does each one of us even pay 90% of the legitimate tax that we are supposed to in terms of VAT, CST or Income tax etc.? Only once we have performed our duties well enough, shall we have the courage to exercise our rights.
Corruption is a mindset of the people – Do we feel proud to break or bend rules, satisfies our ego and paints a heroic image of us in front of everyone? For example Simply breaking traffic rules, like speeding, jumping signals etc, and not being caught or even if being caught just skid away with the generous use of currency. Where does this currency come from? Would you be able to pay that BRIBE from a part of your salary? Does Bribe have a representation in our monthly budget? Even if you have the foresight for the same and your answer is in affirmative … how many of us can actually afford these extra expenditures where in our country the majority of the people are lower middle-income group. This extra money is the black money generated somewhere.
Can we stop generation or circulation of black money? If we can maybe we can have a more disciplined India. Would you not be scared to break rules if you don’t have the means to get away by bribing?