Saturday, December 22, 2012

Makings of the ‘Big Leap


Prakash Katoch

Nothing moves the stony politicians other than money and votes. Some are even perpetually ‘stoned’ with arrogance, drunk with power. The ‘mangoe people’ are insignificant. The recent horrific massacre in a primary school in Connecticut saw President Obama drive down to console the families, make a national statement and attend the service for the unfortunate victims. Compare this to what is happening in India. Despite the anger at the horrific rape of a medical student in Delhi, neither the President nor the Prime Minister has thought it fit to address the nation, even as the media is amply covering more rapes throughout the country even after this sordid affair. They simply do not consider it appropriate because:

·       They are not directly affected.

·       The girl is neither the daughter of a politician nor related to one.

·       Victim belongs to the ‘general’ category ‘mango people’ who are not even eligible to quota. 

The Chief Minister of Delhi, in her own words, cannot muster ‘courage’ to face the victim. How convenient or is it the admission of ineptness in making Delhi safe. Look at the state of crime in the Capital but then you can hardly blame the celebrated lady governing the State when she has made the remarkable discovery that a family of five can live ‘comfortably’ for a complete month in Rupees 600 ($ 10.94), declaring it openly – surpassing even Montek’s genius of Rupees 32 ($ 0.58) a day for a below poverty line Delhi citizen. Are the Nobel Foundation, UN and GoI listening? Is anyone better qualified for the next Bharat Ratna.

Unfortunately, 2014 the election year is many months away and the Congress having achieved ‘victory’ in Gujarat (as being espoused by Congress ministers and spokesperson), assess this rape too will be forgotten like hundreds of previous ones. So, where is the question of amending the law, besides it will take years of discussion and pussyfooting before any change is made, if at all. After all, what will happen to numerous politicians who also consider this a sport? Who knows whether the recently re-emerged spokesperson whose sex tape had been exposed by his driver was indulging in rape or had a willing partner? Hanging or castrating them could make undue dent in vote banks so why make waves?

Despite the Parliament closed for the winter, there was no reason whatsoever why the Prime Minister cannot call for an emergent all party meet to discuss this instant case, ensure expeditious justice and most importantly initiate measures required for awarding capital punishment / castration if rape is proved. Ironic to see a ruling spokeswoman exposed on a TV by the anchor; she was for capital punishment for rape in 2002 when Congress was in opposition but today she is against capital punishment because the party she belongs to is in power.

What kind of a democracy are we in where the High Court is lambasting the police and the Home Secretary lauding them. The latter is fit for a political role post retirement (as many predecessors) telling blatant lies to the nation that water cannons and tear gas have not been used on protesting students while numerous channels are showing live pictures of police using not only water cannons and tear gas but also lathi charge on the protestors who have not indulged in violence and not damaged any police / government property. This should be another feather in the cap of the Chief Minister as well as Shri Shinde of “Shri Hafiz Saeed” fame. Can Shri Shinde muster guts to talk to Shri Protestors.

After every terrorist act, there is mumbo-jumbo about CCTVs; non-functional or lack of them. This time it is lack of PCR vans - is there no other way of securing an area. What a sham state of affairs. What about the full one hour that both the brutally injured victims were lying on the roadside? Hopefully, the High Court will award punishments and that these will not be mere ‘suspensions’ or ‘transfers’ as always is. Few months back you saw the spectacle of erstwhile authorized coloured film from car windows being removed with much fanfare – publicity, moolah et al. So, why are busses plying with so dark windows you cannot see inside?

If the rape victim was related to the hierarchy, daughter of a politician or related to one, the response of the government would have been entirely different. Not only the DGP would have been made to resign, the concerned SP, ACP and policemen responsible for the concerned area would be taken to task. Remember the 1989 kidnapping of Rubaiya Sayeed, daughter of Home Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed and the entire hierarchy reduced to putty, which according to some findings was an inside job of the JKLF organized within seven days of the minister taking oath and orchestrated with his knowledge.

Today, we have reached a stage where a protestor is forced to state on TV that only two women are safe in Delhi – Sonia Gandhi and Shiela Dikshit. According to a former ambassador, the SP of a particular state in North India is specifically chosen by the Chief Minister personally for the simple reason that the SP is required to provide Rupees five crores  to the CM annually. Then according to a Member Parliament, the DGP of a state in Central India is paying hafta for his own protection to the Maoists. You may draw your own conclusions regarding the state of affairs in the rest of India including Delhi.

Ahmedinejad, the Iranian President is known for his explosive outbursts against the West but very few know that : he still lives in the small house he owned as a professor; meets visitors in an ordinary room with wooden chairs; sleeps on the floor, on many occasions joins the cleaning staff of the municipality for cleaning the streets in the area where his home and Presidency are located; he takes no salary and flies economy class in commercial flights; any minister appointed has to render signed document highlighting, among other things, that he shall remain poor and that his personal and his relatives accounts will be watched and the day he leaves the ministry shall be with dignity, and therefore it is not lawful for him or his relatives to take any advantage of his office. Compare this with the state in India.

In Japan, the Prime Minister stops at the red light. Police is empowered to stop the traffic only for the Emperor but not beyond one minute. Compare this with our security obsessed hierarchy – providing security to all and sundry politicians and non-politicians at the expense of the public. Too much security has its own disadvantages too, examples being security guards talking of a high profile lady getting drunk periodically and slapping her husband while another budding youngster is engaged more in gay activities than politics.

Mohan Murti, former Director Europe CII had this to say after attending a seminar in Europe, “Europeans believe that Indian leaders in politics and business are so blissfully blinded by the new, sometimes ill-gotten, wealth and deceit that they are living in defiance, insolence and denial to comprehend that the day will come, sooner than later, when the have-nots would hit the streets. In a way, it seems to have already started with the monstrous and grotesque acts of the Maoists. And, when that rot occurs, not one political turncoat will escape being lynched.”

Maoists messages already talk of planned infiltration of security of political leaders in the state capitals and the capital itself. If the blind hierarchy cannot see the signs of the “Indian Spring” in the ongoing protests, they would not be able to see the makings of the “Big Leap” either, which incidentally is not about India going to the mars but the type that occurred in China. When an SSG officer’s sister was killed in the Lal Masjid action in Pakistan, he blew himself up in the officer’s mess killing 23 of his colleagues.

If the intransigence to rape continues, the hierarchy should be prepared to get raped or castrated by a security guard if the latter’s wife or daughter  has suffered rape. Don’t take the “Mangoe People” too lightly. They may travel cattle class but awakening their beastly instincts will be at peril of the “Creamy Polity”.


The author is a veteran Special Forces Lieutenant General of the Indian Army. 




No comments:

Post a Comment