NOTE: This Article Was Posted On Legally India(http://www.legallyindia.com/Blogs/Entry/politics-or-lolitics-time-for-a-change)
For the past few months, the Twitter-verse has blown up with numerous trends such as #Election2012, #Rs35Lakh etc. Corruption and elections related scams are the most frequent ones. However, to my eye, these elections by far played a subsidised role when it boils down to actual administration. Correct me if I’m wrong when I say that these elected legislators shall only be responsible for passing bills for any current or future endeavour. However, the basic executors shall remain the same obnoxious, plenteous, corrupt individuals.
Does the road sweeper belong to a political party? Should he clean the roads only if Mayawati’s government is in place and should not if Congress had won? Due to over hyped media drives; we have come to believe that a particular political party may/may not do well. Let me explain with an example. Let’s consider the crime of murder. May it be the BJP or the Congress or the Maoists or the NCP or whatever, NO political party shall pass a bill saying “Okay, Murder Is Allowed”. Every entity shall endorse criminalisation to the extremist means. But, even if certain laws are constituted, they are just a meaningless and useless bunch of papers unless they are properly enforced! In Mumbai, it’s a criminal offence to travel in a local train without a valid ticket punishable with a fine of maximum Rs.500 or a year in jail or both. To an outsider, this may resemble perfection but only an insider knows how much the railway loses every year due to criminalist hounds just due to lax enforcement by the railway officials. Simply put, having the perfect laws is not the epitome of justice even though contemporary Indian society treats it to be so.
For example, let’s consider the CSA (Child Sexual Abuse) Bill passed recently. Hailed by activists, citizens and politicians alike, I admit it is a massive step forward keeping in mind the protection of the innocent victims. But on the flip side of the coin, a pessimist questions that what if this bill is enforced but not followed? There are numerous cases where in even the police is completely unaware of the modernistic and so called “sacrilegious” and “culture-shaming” laws. Believe it or not such cases exist. Gay couples jailed because cops are unaware or somewhat more mainstream, a couple belonging to different religions not getting police protection despite orders from the High Court( detailed in an episode of Amir Khan’s Satyamave Jayte). Now it doesn’t matter whether the Lotus is in power or the Hand, the shitty implementation remains the same. So whatever the case may be, unless we fix the administration, even a supposedly perfect constitution won’t work.
Also, noting our despairing need of intelligent law officers, whether they may be judges or lawyers or anyone else. I’m not accusing anyone but all I wish to point out that there are many examples where in our law mechanism has churned results which border on the bizarre( A Boy cannot marry until the age of 21 and can’t have sex at 18. A girl can’t have sex till 18 and can’t marry till 18. Oh! But wait! If she is Islamic, she can be married at 15. Absurd right? Can’t vote, Can’t Drink, Can’t Have Sex but Can Marry)
Coming to the issue of the inefficient administration, many note it to be a vicious circle. Corruption, low salaries etc. are some of the numerous reasons brought in. But what we forget is that the bureaucracy functions as a group i.e. it’s impossible for a single civil servant to carry out any task alone. Even if a bureaucrat tries a radical breakthrough, lack of mutual support destroys him. Earlier, films carrying story of revolution were ultra-inspiring. But slowly, everyone realised that a film is after all a film, not reality. Dibakar Banerjee’s Shanghai too showcases the same issue highlighted which is failure of an honest civil officer due to mean powerful crooks and co-workers. So what’s the solution?
Tough to say. Should we go with the idealistic “I Change, You Change, Everyone Changes!” or stick to what has been happening in our nation from the past 65 years; “Iss Desh Ka Kuch Nahi Ho Sakta”. Should we blindly trust a political party and hate its rivals or join Anna Hazare in his undemocratic but democratic revolution? Personally, I would go with the idealistic change. It may sound optimistic or farfetched, but it makes far more sense to me when compared to the other possible solutions. Also, I did have a personal experience which fuelled my belief in this theory, the irony being, I inspired myself. Once a pair of old uncles from my community had come over and coincidently it was when Anna Hazare ji was fasting for the Jan Lokpal Bill. Just before departing, the topic of discussion was corruption (inevitably).At the door one of them said, “Corruption ka kuch bhi bolo sikhate toh hum hi hain na ghar pe (call corruption whatever you want, but at the end of the day, it’s we who teach it at home!)”.I said nothing but just before I shut the door, I proudly said, “Uncle jo bhi ho, mere mummy-papa ne toh kabhi nahin sikhaya (Uncle, whatever it may be, my parents never taught me that)” and slammed the door.