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Monday, August 22, 2011

Latest Score - Anna 10, Government 0


In a game of high nerves and mental strength, Anna is winning it hands down. On the 7th day of his fast Anna seems to have scored 10 goals against government’s 0, obviously with help of three self-goals from the government. The monumental success that Anna is gathering not only in India but across the planet are being attributed to many factors, which Anna’s irrational critics are voicing for some time. It could be the media which is addressing to the middle class sentiment, a clueless government with having four of its cabinet ministers in Tihar jail with many more in the queue, or simply too much self-gloating and arrogance on the part of the government propelled by that wrong notion of “Elected and Electable”. Amidst all this one factor that all critics seem to forget is the middle class itself.

The basic mantra of Anna’s movement was to touch the middle class sentiment and show respect to their plight. The middle class which long been from double digit inflation, public security in shambles and their own elected members getting caught while looting lakhs of crores of their money, have developed a negative image of their elected representatives. The average sentiment is hatred towards politicians as they feel they have gained nothing from them in the 65 year history of independence. People are disgruntled on the state of affairs. After paying one of the highest percentages of their income in tax, they don’t see it being effectively used or worse, not being used at all but promptly pocketed. People might be ignorant a decade back on what was happening around them but thanks to the rapid growth of worldwide connectivity and online platforms the middle class now is more clued to the happenings and takes example from others on how to go about achieving one’s legitimate rights.

The general cynicism that all our politicians are corrupt is only getting stronger by the hours. The helplessness in an average Indian that they can’t do anything, even if they want to, against the power hungry and corrupt political class, razes within as molten lava. It only needs a push, a push from someone to slide the cap a little for the lava to come out with vengeance. In the time when the middle class has got no one to look up to for inspiration, anyone with some amount of unquestionable dignity becomes a role model. Be it Baba Ramdev earlier or Anna Hazare now.

Honestly the government has done lots of political stupidity to shoot its own feet and fuel Anna’s movement against them. When a person is talking the voice of the middle class and showing concerns for their plight, which the citizens have never seen their political class doing, an unnecessary dig at the person’s character could be termed as a catastrophe. I seriously pity on the type of people that are advising the Prime minister on Anna’s fast. When the national spokesperson of Congress has to say Anna is corrupt from head to toe, it only shows the complete bankruptcy of ideas on the part of the government. I would be surprised if Manish Tiwari hasn’t lost his job yet. Understanding their mistake the government tried their best to salvage the situation only to see the motor mouth Digvijay Sing undoing it, when he said Arvind Kejriwal is corrupt. I have no hesitation in sticking my neck out and announce – ‘If Arvind is corrupt then no one in this country is honest’. This apathy of an elected government towards people who are genuinely against it only angered the middle class more.

Arrest of Anna for no reasons on the fast day was another blunder which the government could have easily avoided. This shows how the government is completely disconnected with a popular sentiment. More bizarre was their explanation that it is not the home ministry but Delhi police who took the decision suo-motto to arrest Anna. It angered people more than the arrest itself, as it was the arrogance first and then the belief that the middle class is fool at large to believe Delhi police chief would have taken such a step in matters of such national outrage without getting a green signal from bosses up. The anger was visible when thousands throng Tihar jail and started shouting antigovernment slogans. Thanks to this hell of a mess, even those who were sitting on the fence jumped in to the fray and bestowed their support for Anna. At this juncture, to gain back some of the lost grounds any sane government would have sacked the top cop of Delhi then and there for such callousness, had he taken the decision on his own but that is yet to happen. Which in a way suggest there were actually many biggies who took the call without accessing the situation at the ground level and now using Delhi police as a scapegoat when things went horribly wrong.

All-in-all, the government seems to have missed the plot badly from day one itself. Someone once said – ‘How to fight against an Idea? Perhaps with another Idea’. But the current government never got this point as they always wanted to look the other way. Rather being submissive to people’s anger they chose to remain adamant and took Anna as a human with flesh and blood but couldn’t see the underneath idea. We had done this to Baba Ramdev, then what the heck if we do it to Anna Hazare? There you go, they thought of using force to suppress Anna when it was the call for some maturity. They succeed in suppressing Anna as a human when they put him in Tihar jail and that too quite unnecessarily at that. But what about the Idea that Anna wanted to sell to the angered middle class? They couldn’t succeed in suppressing the Idea at all as “Ideas can’t be suppressed or killed because Ideas can’t be bounded and Ideas are bulletproof”. A gathering of 50000 people outside Tihar jail that evening was a good testimony to that.

People just loved this, the Idea. The Idea that we can be a part of the change and a better tomorrow, the Idea that all is not lost as we are the people who have elected these politicians and one who can make can break too, the Idea that we can still give a better nation to our kids if today we fight for our rights, an Idea that nonviolence has got more power than the entire political class of the world combined and last but not the least an Idea that there is no wrong time to fight for your rights and legitimate dues. People fathomed this simplicity of an Idea than the complex democratic structure of our country or the more complex parliament standing committee, under which the government is trying to sweep their incompetency and placated intentions.

I am sure, half of the mass who are agitating might not know the exact difference between the Lokpal and the Jan Lokpal, but they are there to support the Idea. People are fed up of the monotonic nature of the political class; first beg for votes and then loot the nation for next five years and exhibit anarchy in the name of democracy when questioned. People are just loving the Idea that there is someone who is standing up and hitting the political class where it hurts most. More than Anna people are supporting the Idea that finally they are now paying back the corrupt and ethic less political class in their own coin with interest. They love that they could showcase the one-upmanship to the bewildered politicians. They just love that being at the receiving end till now it is finally the payback time. For me the fight for Jan Lokpal is just the platform through which the people of the nation stood up and refused to take it lying down any more and shout their lungs out – “Enough Is Enough” !!

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