Tuesday, 27 May 2014

I'll tie a yellow ribbon on the old oak tree….

Yesterday the swearing in of the new Prime Minister has brought with it a new chapter of governance to Indian polity that talks of more determined leadership. In the lead up of this election we have witnessed a battle of the two major parties attempting to win the confidence of a voting public, wooing them to agree to their ideas of leadership for this large and proud democracy that is our homeland, with many words and many promises. With a sweeping majority a single party has come into power, putting aside the hotch-potch bartering of yesterdays coalition governments that held decision-making and each other at ransom on too many occasions and for too long; frustrating well-wishers and disappointing its voters on many occasions.

Putting aside my own personal political preferences, I watched the proceedings of the transfer of governance since the election results and the swearing in ceremony yesterday,  and agreed with those commentaries that brought to  attention that India is a nation that truly understands and celebrates its democracy. The mandate of the people in elections is always respected and it is a country that honours change without compromising itself dignity by resorting to  the shame of violence at such times to display disappointment or dissent.

Without doubt each of us must hold a space of critique for accountability from every government, and so the same must be for these new office bearers too. But we must also be fair in allowing for this regime to showcase to us whether it delivers on its promises or not. To simply rant and condemn would be that we are merely sore losers over not having the party of ones choice that holds an ideological position that one identifies with at the centre.  A democratic process has delivered its verdict  and people have sought for change, so we must now look to set aside our differences and work collectively for common goals. Those who held power and squandered it from weak leadership must now hold great humility to introspect and take steps to restructure and find new leadership. This is imperative if the opposition is to be strong. I will tie a yellow ribbon on the old oak tree* and hope for the rejuvenation of ideals and values to bring home a cohesive political strength and unity to those political parties that did not deliver as promised, and where lessons from history through which to learn, are sought.

We also recognise that a country as complex as India cannot have its course of progress redirected too drastically by any government, and so it is more the methodologies of approach to the areas of existing development and progress that will be fine-tuned, and where hopefully corruption is clamped down upon and transparency of governance is offered instead.  It is also the stability of a pluralistic nation with its course of growth and aspiration already charted which must get more focused attention, and with the dynamics of  newly elected government which brings with it fresh perspectives,  ideation and energy;  it  perhaps can work its magic to revitalise a weary nation that seems rather beleaguered by scams and inflation. 

Everyone deserves a chance to hold their space of leadership if it has been fairly fought. Today Narendra Modi has to prove to people like me that he is the person I can trust with the leadership of my country despite my political affiliations lying elsewhere . He and his party have won an election and hold the popular mandate of this country,  and so in the spirit of optimism I therefore must now hope for this leadership to yield my dreams too. If that occurs then I will know that democracy has truly won.

* The symbol of a yellow ribbon is a reminder of an absent loved one, that would be welcomed home on their return.

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