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P – Political Candidates | #AtoZChallenge

P – Political Candidates | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

In continuation with the yesterdays’ post, I will discuss the political candidates and candidature of the country, when we discuss what are the options and whom to choose from it is a lot dependent on us. Some might say we vote for what is available, I believe its how and whom we vote decides the kind of candidates being fielded.

A terror accused, against which the NIA has admitted that they have sufficient proof, gets a ticket to contest the election. I wonder if any other party would have done the same, the whole world would have gone berserk saying that they are anti-nationals and supportive of such forces.

It is high time that we as voters start thinking about the kind of candidates we want to see. If we vote for the current lot whether from any party, not based on the kind of work they have done but just some sloganeering then we don’t have the right to blame anyone else.

Whether it is a dynast or a megalomaniac, no one is purchasing a seat in Lok Sabha. They are all contesting and it is the majority of the people that vote and send them in. So the elections should be on issues that directly concern us. Even if we can’t choose the candidates, then at least we can pose the right questions to the ones already contesting. Aren’t they answerable?

There is a comical trend that has emerged that highlights both the hypocrisy of a party as well as its supporters. A person is accused of so many things only and only if he or she is a part of the opposition. The same candidates when they are in the opposition party are looked as criminals but the moment they join the current ruling party, a halo emerges around them signifying their innocence and it is then loudly proclaimed that they were criminals only till they were in the opposition.

The candidature of a candidate should be immediately barred or canceled as soon as they migrate from one party to another after a particular election has taken place. People voted for a symbol and the ideology he represents but then a mockery of the system is made, when the next day the candidate jumps to the other side. Election after election we are seeing this and it is a huge cause behind the current horse-trading scenario of politicians.

The much hyped ‘Joota Kand’ that took place between two gladiators of the ruling party. Did anyone try to listen to the charges that they were making against each other? Everyone got lost in counting the number of times one has honored the other with the shoe rather than focusing on the grave accusations made by both on each other. That’s a live proof that nobody is a saint even if they are under the flag of a particular color.

I grew up with a notion that whether you do good work or not but to have criminal inclination is a necessary quality if one has to succeed in politics and that’s the sad reality. Look at the kind of charges against candidates. There are a wide variety of serious charges against them including rape, murder, terrorist activity, and sedition and so on. The system even corrupts the ones who start clean with good intentions. Try to remember the time when we were in school and the teacher used to ask what do you want to become when you grow up…and nobody answered a politician.

Why to only blame the politicians when we ourselves are at fault on so many accounts? The moment our relative or someone close comes to power as a politician or a bureaucrat or even a government official, we try every possible bit to get our work done through them however illegal it may be.

Even the Supreme Court intervened in the matter but with no result. The percentage of tainted candidates who won in the last election was around 35% and it is definitely on the rise in 2019. Everyone from the BJP to Congress, from DMK to AIDMK, each and every political party is a culprit of that.

The political class has played with the law and rules in such a shameful manner that you will be shocked to know that currently, a person who has served less than two years in prison can also contest elections.

We are so dumb that the moment a movie celebrity joins politics and becomes a candidate, everyone blindly votes for them, knowing that they will hardly visit their constituency forget about visiting Lok Sabha and raising the people’s issues.

Nobody questions the returning candidates on their previous performance. Forget questioning, the candidates themselves know that they can’t highlight their own work otherwise they will be shown the mirror royally and hence they play divisive tactics.

I am not saying that every candidate is a criminal but somehow the Good Samaritan gets lost in the glitz, glamour, and influence of a criminal. A Nobel man would never be able to generate the amount of cash and muscle power required to win an election and hence the illicit and immoral will keep coming back to power. The political parties will do everything possible to keep it corrupt, the latest electoral bonds is a prime example of it.

The fallacy lies within us. Till the time we are going to vote for such much-acclaimed candidates the political parties will keep fielding them. We need to look beyond caste, creed, family, lineage, religion and focus on the issues that directly are of concern otherwise the future of your kids’ education will keep going into the hands of those educational ministers who lied about their educational qualifications under oath.

For all those who are fed up of the current lot,

For all those who vote for tainted candidates,

For all those who vote for celebrities,

And

For all those who want a change in the political candidature…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 16th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘Q’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

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4

O – Opposition | #AtoZChallenge

O – Opposition | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

Indians are the big fans of cinema – in fact, it flows in their veins. The recent blockbuster KGF saw a downtrodden guy from the slums making it to the top. Everybody loved the heroics and the movie became a blockbuster. Nobody talks about his ways to achieve things. That is how the ruling party is setting the current narrative.

Every time you question them about the policies and failures of the government and they come back with the same rhetorical answer, ‘If not Modi then who?’

Have you noticed how during every conversation with any BJP member they begin the dialogue by saying ‘Modiji ke netritva me’ (under the leadership of Modi) suggesting and trying to portray that each and every work has been done by him? So that means all the other ministers in the government are useless because at the end of the day whether its decision like Demonetization, PM is taking it or whether it is the construction of roads or whether the sale of spectrum, everything, and anything are only decided by the supreme commander.

This whole idea that only one individual is superior and not even that ‘idea’ is too dangerous. It is actually equivalent to something that they preach against – not to vote for one family while asking for a vote for one man.

I have no objection to the BJP coming back to power…that’s their democratic right but saying that PM is the only option is illogical. When you vote, you vote for a symbol and not for an individual, if that is going to be a reality then let’s remove the logo or the name of the party and simply write a four-letter word on the EVM. They won’t consider even a performing minister like Gadkari because they have set their narrative in such a way.

Where was this wave before 2013? He was nowhere with respective to the national political scenario but with directions from their Nagpur head office, it changed overnight. I am from UP and the same thing happened here. Everybody here was so convinced who the next CM would be but just before the oath-taking ceremony the name was changed and we now know who the CM is. There are reports that claim that the nameplate of a candidate was even made but with a call from Nagpur the city slept with a name for CM and woke up to an altogether different.

If you observe the political spectrum it has more or less remained the same over the past two decades. If you observe even closer you will find that whichever state had an alternate people have voted for them. Isn’t it ironical, a wave makes you win at national level disappoints you at the state level.

The options are available you just have to look beyond biases. When it comes choosing for a nation we should see the ideology and not one individual. Didn’t the same thing happen in 1974 when the slogan was coined, ‘India is Indira and Indira is India’ and we know what followed in 1975. That was the perfect example that even the supreme leader can go drastically wrong.

When you ask BJP members and ministers they will say that the prime minister gets angry if he is asked questions. To question someone means asking for accountability and that he can go wrong. The narrative that there isn’t any choice or alternative is based on a fallacy that he can’t go wrong or he isn’t vulnerable.

It has also to do with the army of bootlickers that are surrounding him. They hardly give him the correct picture and just to save berths for them to keep on egging him on whatever path he chooses. To claim that he is superior to everyone or he is the most intellectual of all is just their narrative. Saddam became ‘Saddam’ because of the spineless stooges he kept, who always appreciated him in all his actions.

Let’s not go far away, a current politician who is serving a term for his sins brought so much glory for the Indian Railways. Since independence, railways performed the best under him and the only time when it became profitable – he was invited to the most prestigious institutes around the globe to give an insight into his strategies.

What this has done in the current tenure is the lack of accountability. I am yet to see a minister being sacked for their performance. Whichever ministry you pick, the moment they are questioned for their actions they start looking at one individual and then everybody seems to get blinded with the aura he is exuding. Just remember he is no God.

The opposition was never so weak but there are options and if there aren’t then we should create some but if you say that a particular individual is great but their ideology of hate is bad then you are fooling yourself. A person who spent 50 years of his life dedicatedly working for an ideology, how can that person not have the same thought process. It’s all about how you package, brand and market.

I think a lot is in the hands of the media to start a wave and then decide which wave blows in what direction. We have been seeing the character assassination and character rebuilding of so many people over the years with the simple use of media. A once hated superstar, by media, is now a messiah, all thanks to how they portray him.

Since I began with a movie example I will end also with one. Have you seen the movie Shaurya starring Kay Kay Menon and Rahul Bose? If not then watch it. Even if you don’t catch the whole movie just watch the monologue in the end by Menon and you will understand what I am trying to say. It is not necessary that a person who has family involves in corruption and a person who doesn’t have any monetary interest be always right. There are other reasons too and some of them are imbibed in their ideology.

All I can say is the opposition needs to take a cue from Bollywood and we have seen the mightiest fail and fall.

For all those who believe that opposition is weak,

For all those against anarchy,

For all those who believe in democracy,

And

For all those who believe there are alternatives…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 15th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘P’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

4

N – National Education | #AtoZChallenge

N – National Education | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

India is one of the youngest countries of the world with about 38% of the population below the age of 18 years and the average age somewhere around 29 years. With so much young population India has a tremendous opportunity to outgrow some of the major western economies that are being laggard behind because of their aging population. The countries like Spain and Italy have average ages around 45.

For that young population to contribute to nation building education plays the most crucial role along with basic necessities of life. With the right education and guidance, they can enhance their skills and contribute to the nation. But the stark reality is; issues like ‘Education’ aren’t being even discussed at the time of the election. It is one of the things that have fared badly under the current regime.

During the 2014 elections, their manifesto stated – “Education must create minds free from superstitions, hatred, and violence and become an important vehicle to cement national unity, social cohesion and religious amity. Our endeavor should be to inculcate moral, ethical and humanistic values in the individuals and the society.” It laid a lot of emphasis on increasing the expenditure on education and take the total contribution to 6% of the GDP.

The reality is that during the initial four years it has continuously declined with a marginal increase in the last year. The current overall expenditure stands around 3.5%. It’s startling to notice with so much underperformance in this sector there’s hardly any talk on these issues during the current elections. They are back to their ways of Saffron v\s Green dividing.

They began with a swash-buckling minister whose education itself was under question and the fact of the matter is she lied under oath in the 2014 elections. It was because of authoritarian assaults and mishandling of cases like Rohith Vemula, JNU, BHU and so on that she was removed overnight. I still remember the sight when in Lok Sabha she declared herself to be a bigger mother of Vemula than her real mother and how she would be ready to be beheaded if she is found wrong. Well, the irony is that the government made a committee to look into the matter and you will find it comical that the committee consisted of only ONE member.

A plethora of new IIMs and IITs have been started with most of the seats remaining vacant. On one hand, it is not cost-beneficial, on the other, it simply dilutes the brand of the institution. We don’t want our IIMs and IITs to become the Amitys of the world, with all due respect to Amity.

Another scheme, to increase funding in national institutions was brought in with the aim of increasing their overall global ranking. To this date, the government is yet to release any data as to how much funding was released, what is its effect, has the ranking of any institutions jumped?

I didn’t anyone question the government when they awarded a private institute, ‘Institute of Eminence’ for which the foundation is yet to be laid and aiding them with a grant. How justified is that? This is all too much visible but the enigma is in the blindness of the followers.

Since the new National Education Policy promotes the agenda of privatization, commercialization and communalization it will simply accelerate the existing culture of loot by private institutions. Barring a single government in Delhi, no state or national government has come out in the open and spoken about the absurd rising prices of educating a child. The proposed NEP clearly disagrees with the constitutional vision of a common education system.

When we were in school, our parents used to evaluate public educational institutions too, but this has seen a tremendous decline. The previous Government of Rajasthan had decided to operate 225 schools on public-private partnership (PPP) model, which was nothing but handing over public schools to the private sector. Similarly, the previous BJP Madhya Pradesh government had planned to close about 15,000 government schools and in Maharashtra, the state government has decided to close some 13,905 schools that have a student count of less than 20.

The last budget from the FM highlighted a shift in providing the aide to a government institution. Now they will be treated as loans. All it will do is convert public education institutions into commercial units with an aim to generate profits.

With RSS figures now at the helm of key educational bodies of India, a systematic communalization of education is being done. For instance, I saw that they have simply changed the facts of history where they have depicted Maharana Pratap victorious during the war of Haldighati – that is way off from what actually happened. They are rewriting history just to suit their narrative of hate.

The steep cuts in funding for research is another key issue. When students protest against it they are dealt with force and when things become unmanageable for them they declare not even the students but the whole institute as anti-national. Can you believe the institute that has given the largest number of civil servants to the country is now tagged anti-national?

If the government had been really serious about the promises made in its manifesto there wouldn’t have been so many teaching positions vacant in almost every institute. Don’t forget that all this is laying the foundation for the future of India and if you want to rule the country in times to come, this is definitely going to backfire.

Forget about the left-wingers and neutrals, what about the right-wingers. Do they don’t want their children to get a proper education or they are simply satisfied with them taking to the streets and brandishing swords on every Hindu festival? The ball is now in your court for what future you want for your child.

For all those who still have hope,

For all those who believe every child should be educated,

For all those against the commercialization of education,

And

For all those who believe the current education policies should change…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 14th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘O’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

8

M – Media | #AtoZChallenge

M – Media | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

There are four pillars of the Indian Democracy – Judiciary, Executive, Legislature and Press. With the evolution and with technology taking over along with the bombardment of media houses and news channels, I believe the fourth pillar can now be called ‘Media’.

The main role of the fourth pillar is impartial reporting and creating transparency of how the other three pillars are performing, spreading awareness till the last village of India and informing every citizen what is happening in the country in the political, economic and social spectrum.

In an ideal democracy for proper functioning, all these pillars should perform efficiently and independently. Each of the pillars should be given equal importance and no one should dominate any other. In America, judiciary overpowers everyone and in UK it’s the legislature that is the dominant force. Hence the question arises – Is the media playing its role properly?

Ownership of media houses plays a critical role in deciding which way their narrative and propaganda will be inclined. How can one ensure transparency, honesty and fairness when the owner of an established and renowned media house gets a Rajya Sabha ticket from a political party? It is impossible to expect it.

As of now, there are more than 400 news channels including regional language ones. This makes them among the most powerful tools and with its activity becomes the center of every other pillar; their integrity holds even more importance. But everyone has their own loyalty and their own agenda.

With the advent of social media, the touch points are massive and uncontrollable. They have taken over the courts as well through their way of media justice and media trials. They are pronouncing decisions even before the matter reaches a trial court. This rising trend of handing out verdict isn’t democratic in any sense.

Even managed properly it has some positives too. Movements like ‘MeToo’ movement gathered momentum and unearthed so many heinous habitual offenders because of social media and its reach. But then again, their job is to report and then let the law take its course. With the majority of the population engaging in trolling, its usage is becoming tremendously taxing for mental health.

Something that started as a boon to the society has started turning into a bane – and it is not long before social media will lose the ‘social’ aspect of it.

Media should be playing a more progressive and constructive role in a developing country like ours, which is going through a major transition phase. They should be the voice of the largest democracy in the world and take ownership of their issues and causes. Instead, the media does the exact opposite by simply curbing the voice of the common man and creates noise about the existing propaganda and narratives.

A poor urchin falls into a bore well and everything comes to a standstill for the next 48 hours. A leading Bollywood celebrity visits court and the media goes into a frenzy. The last time something like this happened, the SC was handing out a verdict on a CM but there was hardly any coverage. I am now sure that when something like this happens, the deafening noise is created to subdue a very important matter directly concerning the public.

If you are dedicatedly running shows on the happenings of daily soaps and then I will not shy away from saying, but that’s not reporting – that is bullshit entertainment for TRPs. News like where a monkey pulls the tail of a lion – I think these sort of programs should be left to animal planets of the world.

For hours they run advertisement shows of God men just because they are paying you massively, forgetting that in a way all they are doing is promoting superstitions.

Wait for the cricket world cup to start – Instead of reporting about the matches, the newsrooms will convert into cricket pitches where every tom dick and harry would be advising what should be the next move of the captain. The educated class, at least, should understand that these are just mere diversion tactics so that the people of the country are distracted from the real issues.

They were supposed to report the news rather than creating news. These days they are just looking for opportunities to create news without even checking the credibility of the information and in the process, giving rise to a new vertical of ‘Fake news’.

Since the use of the word ‘pseudo’ is in fashion I think I can take the liberty of calling many of the news anchors behaving like pseudo spokespersons of the political parties. There is hardly anyone left who can be termed as a neutral reporter who is trying to present a piece of news as per facts.

Read the book, 1984 by George Orwell and you will understand how the media is used on a day-to-day basis by the political machinery to brainwash you. Imagine if social media and the current army of trolls would have been present during the times of Hitler. Honestly, no one can visualize the rampage it would have caused.

Media is supposed to raise voice against oppression and against the current establishment. They should raise voice against the narrative like casteism and Hindu-Muslim divide; rather they are the ones fuelling it. There is hardly any reporting of educational issues, farmer issues, and healthcare issues.

The irony is that on the launch of a new food product there will be hundreds of media personalities covering it, but there would hardly any covering the real issues of those who are growing it.

It also speaks a lot about what kind of viewership it is getting. Higher TRPs for such content means that people are hardly concerned with real issues. It is a high time that we think real hard about what is the kind of content we are watching and what are the issues that directly affect our lives otherwise it will be too late and all we will become are stooges of this maddening noise.

With one pillar so pathetically losing its credibility and integrity it is not long before, the foundation of democracy will be under threat and the signs of which are already becoming more and more visible.

For all those who use social media,

For all those who hate trolling,

For all those who watch the news for news,

And

For all those who are worried for the current state of media…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 13th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘N’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

6

K – KASHMIR | #AtoZChallenge

K – Kashmir | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

Post World War II the British were left bankrupt. They started abandoning and leaving the colonies and in the process giving them independence. Lord Mountbatten arrived in February 1947 and was supposed to take till June 1948 to come up with the proposal of how India would be divided. He invited Cyril Radcliffe, a barrister who had never set foot in India before then and only gave him five weeks to do so.

He did it in a hurry and within two months a line was sketched on a map of the then India dividing in on the basis of the religion of the majority that resided in that area. Everyone knows that came at a price of more than a million lives and fifteen million displaced.

Maharaja Hari was a Hindu ruler of a Muslim majority princely state at the time of partition and he was to make a call whether they want to join India or Pakistan or remain independent. A kind of civil war broke out where groups of both religions want to eradicate the other one. The Maharaja then wanted help from the Indian government to fight the Pashtuns. The help was promised at a cost.

Though the politicians can claim and say that Kashmir was forever a part of India – it was not. It came under a signed agreement to side with India, so that India could send their military to fight the Pashtun infiltrators. The UN interfered and slowly by 1949 the war came to an end but the vote with which side Kashmir would finally go never took place. The UN then established the LoC, which was formalized in 1971 – India controls 43% of the land, while Pakistan and China 37% and 20% respectively.

If you go into the history of Kashmir, infiltrators forever ruled it whereas the original people of the land never got to rule it. I believe they were the most secular around the 14th century where all the three religions coexisted and lived in harmony.

The killing of Kashmir Pandits was a sad event which led to their mass exodus but equally horrifying was the killing of Muslim after independence which continued for more than a year resulting in a massacre that amassed somewhere close to 100000 deaths. Nobody knows how over the years the fight against a small group of Pashtuns has become a fight against the local people of Kashmir.

The current dispensation mentioned in their 2014 manifesto that they would look after rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in their original land. I have hardly seen a single family being brought back. The irony is they were in power there for a decent number of years to at least show their will to do that rather than just slogans. Even shocking was the way they came in power, aligning with a party that is completely opposite to their core ideology.

I feel the ruling party, when they gave the mantra that they want to eradicate a complete political class from the nation, just focused on forming governments. They used any method possible to form a government whether it was Goa or NE states or even in Kashmir. What they don’t know is, after they have staked claim to form the government, how to govern it then.

The condition has been continuously deteriorating since they came into power with stats showing an exponential rise in terrorist attacks and people joining militancy.

After the recent terrorist attack of Pulwama, there was an outcry to boycott all the Kashmiris from India. Many of them fled back to their natives. Isn’t this hypocrisy of the highest order that you want Kashmir to be a part of India but do not want Kashmiris?

They stirred the nationalist sentiment and got the backing of a lot of people when a senior leader in the government announced that they will stop water to Pakistan. Honestly, that is a joke. As per the Indus water treaty, India can only at most stop 20% of the water that is flowing. Currently, there is no practical measure to even stop that much but you cannot simply change the natural flow of a river against gravitation. No one knows how many decades it will take before India can make enough dams to even contain 20%.

For the past seven decades under all the governments, there were conflicts. For some period it dies down but then it again aggravates. Nobody wants to understand the root cause of why the local common people are willing to pick up arms. Some say education is the cure but haven’t we seen even the educated do that. More than the education they require Inclusion and until that happens they will continue to keep doing so. It suits politicians on both the sides of the LoC that the conflict keeps simmering – if the issue itself will die what will they ask vote on?

My opinion is this issue will continue to boil. Even if Pakistan decides not to pursue it any further, China will not allow it. And if a day comes when China decides to leave Kashmir alone then also the western warmongers who just want to sell their weaponry on the name of national security will not let the conflict die away. Do one thing every time there is an attack in Syria, Palestine, India, and Pakistan or anywhere in the world, just check the stock prices of the arms manufacturers. They simply shoot upwards.

After decades of bloodshed, three wars, lakhs of deaths, millions of human rights violations that continue on a daily basis, whether India wins or any other country, the biggest sufferers and losers are the real people of the land of Kashmir who continue to live each day as if it is going to be there last.

Someone said that Kashmir is a heaven on earth, but I say if this is how heaven is, better call it hell and there might eventually be peace.

For all those who believe Kashmir belongs to India,

For all those who believe the killings should stop,

For all those who believe there is no winner in a war

And

For all those who believe there should be peace in the Kashmir Valley…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 11th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘L’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

6

J – JINGOISM | #AtoZChallenge

J – Jingoism | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

The first round of polling is officially completed for General Elections 2019. I have been following news and there have been continuous reports of EVMs malfunctioning in various polling booths. There is a trend emerging from the last two rounds of general elections, I have personally been a victim of it, that a large number of voters’ names are missing from the voter list. There were complaints all throughout the day where on average a number of fifty people per booth were unable to find their names. Would anyone look into that? I think its too late to take any corrective measures.

The new issue which I found in the news being reported today was that a massive number of people have reached out saying the ‘indelible ink’, which is imported from several countries, is getting removed in one wash itself. Now, this is something very serious. On one hand, people’s names were removed and on the other, if the ink goes off anybody can vote any number of times and in the end, it will be unverifiable.

What caught my attention today was a tweet from the ruling party’s handle.

Let’s not discuss the religions or faiths he might have missed…but even from their tweet its evident that they accept the secular structure of the country. But isn’t this selective of them to choose which religion they want and which they don’t. Why so much courtesy being showered on two other religions? I have previously stated and will again, since they had the majority this time around, please go ahead and declare it a Hindu state and the same majority will show you your real place.

Jingoism definition

As per Oxford dictionary:

Jingo is defined as ‘A vociferous supporter of policy favouring war, especially in the name of patriotism.’

Its origin as per Oxford is – Late 17th century (originally a conjuror’s word): by jingo (and the noun sense) come from a popular song adopted by those supporting the sending of a British fleet into Turkish waters to resist Russia in 1878. The chorus ran: ‘we don’t want to fight, yet by Jingo! If we do, We’ve got the ships, we’ve got the men, and got the money too’.

Jingoism is defined as ‘Extreme patriotism, especially in the form of aggressive or warlike foreign policy.’

A couple of days back the PM was reaching out to the first time voters from an election rally and was appealing to vote or to dedicate their vote to the martyr of Pulwama. Now, again and again, we have seen this since the time this ghastly attack took place how the current government is trying to woo voters on the name of soldiers. The Irony is that the CRPF personnel who were killed won’t be given an official ‘Martyr’ status. Forget about what will happen to their kids and family members after they are gone.

Just ask yourself is this the new India that you want to build or just another country like our neighboring countries with a saffron color to everything. Even the rainbow with only one color will lose its identity and beauty.

While nationalism or patriotism is fuelled by a love for one’s own country Jingoism is fuelled by hate towards a common thing. Jingoism doesn’t exist in individuality…it exists in a crowd. The mob culture of handing out the so-called justice is a prime example of it.

In fact, the basic concept of nationalism took birth in Europe during the industrial revolution where the core fundamental behind the formation of a country lies in the language they speak, the religion they follow and a common set of virtues they hate.

The ascendency of this phenomenon is complemented by the decline of other ideologies as well. The others who don’t have any inclination towards any particular ideology, but want to question, don’t do that for the fear of being termed Anti-National.

The sad reality is the party that was non-existent even during the war of Independence questions the patriotism of the opposition. Those who refused to hoist the tri-color at their headquarter question the patriotism of a party who was key to the Independence of our country. If there wasn’t any contribution by them, I think a certain individual should be stripped of the title ‘Father of the nation.’ Believe me, if the current model continues it will be a reality sooner than later.

Patriotism is very subjective – For example, when I was out of the country, my patriotism was towards my country. But when we are in our country doesn’t that gets divided into the states we represent. Don’t we have undeclared biases like North India v\s South India, doesn’t it gets reduced to your city when you are within a state? Long before India was constitutionally united didn’t the kingdoms or princely states fought wars amongst themselves, at that time every soldiers’ patriotism was towards the state he was defending.

The fanatic rise in Islamic fundamentalism propelled by western interests makes it a global phenomenon, which directly or indirectly favors the narrative of jingoism.

The new nationalism that is actually Jingoism is very dangerous for future generations. You have a look around the world and the countries which promote it – are they really on the course of development? Hardly, any. In fact, the very concept is outdated and takes the overall progressive thought process of the country decades and centuries back.

I am sorry to say this, but if Jingoism isn’t wrong, then Hitler was never wrong in all the atrocities he committed.

For all those who believe everyone is equal,

For all those who are patriotic,

For all those who are nationalistic,

And

For all those who hate Jingoism…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 10th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘K’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.

15

I – Institutions Under Threat | #AtoZChallenge

I – Institutions under Threat | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z

Image ref: The Quint

Every government when comes to power is responsible for the proper and impartial running of the administrative and government institutions. The government inherits the institutions from the previous governments, takes decisions and makes changes for improvement in them for the proper functioning of the democracy. Sadly, the institutions have gone through irreparable damage during the last five years.

When was the last time you saw four senior Supreme Court judges conducting a press conference and highlighting the interference of the executive in the matters of the judiciary.

Judiciary

As soon as the current government came into power they passed legislation to set up a National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC), which would look into the appointment of judges. It sought to change the rules of appointment of judges and their transfers to the high courts and the Supreme Court by replacing the present system of the collegium. Though there are many critics of the collegium system itself but, the governments handling of cases of judges like KM Joseph puts them and their intentions under poor light as to why they want to change the existing system.

Article 50 of the Constitution, lays emphasis on the issue of separation of judiciary from executive: “The State shall take steps to separate the judiciary from the executive in the public services of the State.”

RBI

RBI, since its establishment in 1934, has been a crucial institution for the economy of Indian democracy. The government and the RBI governors have been on different pages since the start of the term of this government. The former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan whose policies of stable interest rates and tight control of inflation were seen by the Government as anti-growth was in a constant rift with the government’s financial policies.

Urijit Patel, the governor who succeeded him, considered favored by the government, didn’t seem to be in cordial terms with the government. In fact, he didn’t even complete his term and ended it abruptly. On many key issues, the government went ahead without even consulting the RBI.

“Governments that do not respect central bank independence will sooner or later incur the wrath of financial markets, ignite economic fire, and come to rue the day they undermined an important regulatory institution,” RBI deputy governor Viral Acharya said in a lecture last year.

CBI

Everybody witness the recent battle of CBI number 1 v/s CBI number 2. The common man thinks that it was created because of internal conflicts but not many of us know that both were closer to the current PM and were favored officials. After the fight became, the government arbitrarily, and perhaps illegally, sent both of them on leave, and a third favorite was named as the interim director.

“Not all influence that is exerted by the political government would be found explicitly or in writing. More often than not, it is tacit, and requires considerable courage to withstand,” Alok Verma (original CBI no 1) said in his petition to the Supreme Court challenging the government’s order sending him on leave.

On a single day, there were 144 charges put against the members of the ruling party in Delhi, out of which the court rejected half of them in one go. These were all politically motivated. In another incident, CBI arrested an MLA of the Delhi government. He was acquitted around 10 am in one particular case and was picked up again by CBI by 2:00 pm for another round of discussion regarding another case. They have literally made a joke out of this.

As per a Guwahati HC judgment, there are even issues with the legality and constitutionality of CBI as an institution. SC put a stay on this order later. There should have been urgent hearing of this matter but it is just being delayed. CBI was always misused and is currently being taken to another level.

Election Commission

EC is an organization that is so pivotal for a fair democracy. There have been issues after issues where their credibility has been questioned, whether the delay in declaration of election dates to compensate for the delay in government declaration of plethora of schemes or just writing a love letter to somebody calling the Indian Army as ‘Modi-ki-Sena’ – the rules are being constantly flouted while the EC happily looks the other way round.

As of yesterday about 66 retired senior public civil servants had to write to the President about the improper conduct and functioning of the Election Commission favoring one party.

Income Tax & ED

Constant raiding of only members of oppositions leaves no doubt. I didn’t see a single raid being conducted when a mining baron from Karnataka made a spectacle worth Rs 500 crores for his daughter’s marriage just next to demonetization. I am not saying that it is wrong, but when only one side gets raided then it becomes quite evident.

The appointment of heads of CVC, UGC and many other institutions not based on merit but just favoritism has raised doubts time and again. The dilution of RTI and CIC has been helpful in further weakening the institutions.

The heads of these institutions giving verdict and taking decisions out rightly in the favor of the ruling party raise even more doubts. What confirms their loyalty to these parties is when just after their term is over they simply go ahead and join the party.

A governor openly supporting BJP’s stand and stating that Kashmiris should be dealt with harshly and that it is not a Part of India or another governor persuading people to vote to the current PM. If this is not the misuse of the institution then what is?

I will briefly discuss the subject of educational institutions. The agenda behind the new education policy document is the agenda of privatization, commercialization, and communalization. Its election manifesto had echoed the demand for spending six percent of the GDP on education but ironically the spending has been continuously falling down during the last five years.

Every time when they are questioned about undeclared emergency they divert the question to the emergency of 1975. What they don’t realize is that every time they do that they conform to the fact that there is an undeclared emergency. What happened in 1975 was terribly wrong and the government paid for it but what is happening right now is equally condemnable and threatening to the institutions.

What is even appalling is the appointment of RSS personnel in key administrative bodies. The sad reality is nobody dares to question and whosoever does is made to keep quiet.

You won’t believe from the moment I decided to pick up this theme, I have got feedback that people are afraid for me. Even a friend pointed out that they are even afraid to comment on the posts whether they agree or disagree. That is the times we are living in and the ruling party wants us to believe that nothing is under threat.

Somebody save democracy!

For all those who believe in democracy,

For all those who believe in the independence of institutions,

For all those who believe that favoritism exists,

And

For all those who know that institutions are under threat…

It’s not a goodbye,

But it’s a GOOD BYE.

Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul

This is the 9th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Politics Category is ‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’, where I would be covering some relevant issues with the General Elections 2019 through the course of 26 posts.

Read the previous post here: IPL – Indian Parliamentary League

Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with letter ‘J’

I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘Dubai – City of Gold‘. If you love travel head over to the Travel Theme and share your feedback.