Monday, 11 April 2011

March to the call of the hour....

The Baroda Citizens Initiative as an organisation held a public meeting to invite solidarity to the support of Anna Hazare's movement for getting the Jan Lokpal bill passed in Parliament. What was so disappointing to see was that it was just a superficial token gesture that became a "photo-opp" for the organisers and their friends, who had squeezed in time to come by because otherwise it would have"looked bad"!! Let's get real Baroda! We are a city which suggests a prominent focus on education and yet what do we do with this when it matters most? We act like idiots who treat everything with our famous chalta hai none responsive attitudes. Instead of calling an awareness to the issue that Anna Hazare is fighting by conducting a day long session of scholars and citizens speaking on the rot of corruption, we instead squander yet another opportunity to make civil society aware of their responsibility.

Talks in schools and in the numerous faculties of the university would have provoked a sense of urgency to this matter. This is not an issue that anybody can avoid. Corruption besmirches the entire nation with its ugly stain. India has become synonymous with this horror of sanctioned extortion. What irked me intensely was to see people at this gathering who everybody knows to be corrupt and who have been involved in fraudulent activities being the foot soldiers ( more like thugs really!) to rally support of attendance for this shabby signature meet. When will people learn that broad smiles and good intentions cannot substitute for real grassroots work. We should be inspired by Arvind Kejriwal. But with the skeletons of corruption in almost everybodies cupboard in India what can we expect other than lip service to institute change that is hard hitting and unbiased.

As for the likes of Mr. Winky-blinky Ramdev Baba; do please stay in the space of your own truth and let others with more genuinely non-self serving agendas be the decisions of this movement against corruption. As an optimist I must have hope. And so despite all my fears about the possibility of people within government service who will definitely attempt to sabotage this movement, I am keeping my flag of hope flying high. Now it is really about you and me insisting that we stay committed to this cause and lend our voice to it.

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