One Up for Democracy!

I like what is happening in India. I approve of the fact that people from all walks of life are making their views heard on all issues…ranging from the Aamir Khan vs. the Gujarat government controversy to reservations to The DaVinci Code. It indicates that, to an extent, democracy is alive in the nation.
I say to an extent. And for a reason. The governmnt has ample evidence now that an overwhelming number of people are opposed to reservations. There are pro-quota people, no doubt. But Arjun Singh’s statement that the government will go ahead with reservations, no matter what, smacked strongly of autocracy. Does public opinion count for nothing?
Another thing about this whole mess that pissed me off was an article by Sharad Yadav which I read in Hindustan Times. He accuses the anti-reservationists of having an elitist mentality. He says that the upper castes still can’t bear the thought of lower castes being educated. What utter bullshit! Anti-reservationsits are against reservations…not education for all. Yadav is just a rabble-rouser who believes in circular arguments and logical fallacies to make his point.
Anyway..back to the point that I was initially making. I like what is happening because it indicates that we Indians are not passive spectators of political drama. We’re slowly beginning to make ourselves heard, loud and clear. It was always a mystery to me why we, who argue vociferously amongst ourselves about Sourav Ganguly and the BJP and petrol prices, never take to the streets to make a point. I suppose it is the regular middle-class mentality that we all have, “if it doesn’t affect me directly, I’ll not bother about it.”
I’m an armchair critic, of course. The only time I took to the streets was when I took part in a march protesting against the war on Iraq. But apart from that I’ve been content to just watch TV debates, read editorials and sign petitions.
Being pro-active is so important. It was the aam janta which forced the US government to pull out of Vietnam. But that is the stuff of legend already. A more immediate example would be of the French students who forced the government to pull out an employment bill that would’ve made holding down jobs difficult for students. That was ‘People Power’.
Of course, ‘People Power’ is not always successful. The student protests at Tiannenmen Square resulted in failure. But at least a point was made. Even today, we count the unknown student who faced-down a military tank as one of our modern day heroes. Such moments in history bring in fresh realization that we have the gift of reason and communication for a reason. We have to make ourselves heard…it doesn’t matter for what. Everyone has an opinion and every opinion has to be heard. Unlike what Arjun Singh said, the government cannot just go ahead with its decision, ‘no matter what’. This is our country, our government. We elected the people who sit in the Lok Sabha. They are there to serve us, to represent us…not to rule us.

11 thoughts on “One Up for Democracy!

  1. First of all, that is some mind-blowingly lethal writing there dude, you seem to be on fire.
    Though the idea of democracy is not the intented way, the way things r going seems to be a good new direction. And even though I hated to watch students being lathicharged n all, it just has given ppl the idea of how the power has to taken into our own hands and so more n more ppl are realising this.
    I guess this is an awakening!
    good Job dude!
    Keep writing!

  2. Hey, great piece of writing again there! Btw, if I may be allowed to drift away from the point a little bit, I personally think, so far, its just the “I wanna be safe” mentality which had been keeping us all shut and mute! But I think that is probably the one thing which is changing and the attitude is becoming something like, “I’ll be safe only if everyone around is.” And I think that’s something which was much needed!

  3. I agree completely…it is all very well to be an individualist, but there comes a time when you realize that the good of an individual lies in the greater good of the community.

  4. damn u, it took me 9 whole lines to say the same thing which u sed in less than 39 words, damn u, really, i mean it, LOL!

  5. I think its high time Mr. Arjun Singh puts on his retirement chaddis! He has shown little respect for ppl’s opinion here!!!
    As for ppl comin together, i guess it just needs a little spark somewhere!
    and I am really glad the youngsters and students have finally decided to take a stand on the issue!
    Yea, that image of the student standing in front of the tanker will be one of the most enduring images of the last century!!!

    And yea, nice hard hitting writing that!!! You make ur stand pretty clear!!!

  6. Feeling of dislike come out in different ways. As people’s mind set vary, the way it comes out also differs.Now i’ld read that clearly through this post . Well written and clear cut ideas . Keep up gud work.

  7. It’s wonderful isn’t it? The Indian populace are making their power felt more than ever. The more the government tries to choke our voices, the more we shout back in unison, giving this dark period of “democratic” governance the proverbial silver-lining.

    And yes, like you rightly put it, people would pack more power if they were more than just armchair critics. That’s an arduous journey.. but I do hope we get there.

    People are shining! India is shining! And so is your writing!

  8. Hi,so sorry to bore you with a comment on reservation(keeps draggin on!).i want to make it clear first up that i’m not pro-reservation.

    wot i want to say is that when some one says that there are an “overwhelming” number of ppl against reservations,it leads to a lot of misconceptions.And the media plays no small part in creating these!

    Burkha Dutt on NDTV for eg,received a rude shock when 24×7 did their survey vote on reservation.It was done throughout india(urban n rural).Until then,our “star” journalist had been under the impression that, covering the streets of Delhi means she’s in touch with the “pulse of the nation” or somethin.Needless to say,a majority in that survey (64% i think) were pro-res(wot do you expect.Mandal 1 put OBC figures at 52%.i think.n that was 16-17 years ago).

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