Our own leaders are not setting good examples!Changing values for this generation!

Mira Nair’s film, Namesake, based on the novel of the same name by Jumpha Lahiri created a minor stir. It captured the present generation’s plight caught in an alien land! This generation in that sense is paying a heavy price for seeking the new moksha abroad!

What about those of us who are left behind? We have to suffer silently, on the state of affairs in our own country? Silently bear witness to the fall in values, worship our false heroes and tin gods who parade themselves on public stage as leaders? Not elected nor having much credibility? What price our democracy? Our value systems, age-old belief systems too?

The veteran CPM leader Jyoti Basu is past 90 and still going strong. This gives us pleasure and we wish him a long life. Such sentiments are part of our culture, our tradition and value system. Indian culture respect age and wisdom. With age and wisdom come certain role models.

So, we needn’t dwell on the subject further.

But what caused us some sadness is the fact the veteran leader uses language (about the BJP) that is in poor taste. He has called the BJP as “communal barbaric”. This is not acceptable. BJP might not be the darling of progressive minds. It could be a communal party, blatantly even. But still there is parliamentary language and etiquette to call a party in some more restrained language.

Atal Behari Vajpayee is a moderate in an otherwise extremist rightist party. He has gracefully offered to quit politics. That is rare, it seems, among the Indian politicians. So, the RSS mouthpiece calls him a rare “prgya purush”. Can we hear such  stand from the CPM’s patriach?

This is only one aspect.The other aspect is that even when we age,as well do,we Indians dont seem to realise that  today we seem to be forgetting completely the  value systems. With age, it is now realised, doesnt come wisdom! More so in our public life. More and more new entrants into politics as a profession seem to believe that they can stick to office as if it is a lifetime job. They dont become mature in politics ,rather they become unwise and behave in ways that are no in keeping with their high positions.

Political class is a new phenomenon in India. This is the gift of our democracy. With democracy comes certain fall in values. Criminalisation, corruption and resort to compromise on basic principles are some of the new developments that impact on our values and public conduct.

Indian tradition is  okay but what we should all be doing  at certain points in our public life? Renunciation? Giving up willingly, our material attachment etc.

But now what we see?

There is enough to say that our ageing politicians are becoming rather unwise every day! Dr.Manmohan Singh is expected to be “elected” once again from Assam under an utterly untenable false declaration that he is a tenant of a lady who is popularly described in the state as a “PM’s landlady”. It is huge joke, for the Pm to indulge in, all for the sake of an office that he is presiding over with such poor track record! Why set such a bad example? Make a mockery of our democratic traditions? And all for the sake of naked power, so power hungry our older men. Down South another comical scenario is enacted. Mr.Karunanidhi, the TN CM has lamented as to his opponent Jayalalitha tormenting him, in his  old age. A reader in the Deccan Heralad writes and points out how he  has to blame  himself by initiating such poor political culture in the state.

Our leaders, even the most educated, the most who lived all their lives in official positions and attained all the highest offices and positions, earned enough, somehow refuse to give up voluntarily! When the going is good! We somehow come round and round and seek office and petty privileges.

Our current  President of India will be demitting office in July. Kalam earned universal respect for his simplicity, above all other virtues. He wanted to return to teaching. Yet, there were interested parties to prop him up for a second term. This was unfortunate. Within days, there are now clear positions for going for  new candidates! Kalam must have wisely offered not to seek a second term. He should know more than others about the impossibility  in the scheme of things. Kalam also has this limitation. He hasn’t spotted enou8gh Indians to be conferred the highest honours, the Bharat Ratna awards. Are there not enough Indians who deserve such recognition? Or, Kalam not capable enough to spot such talents? Or, unwilling to recognise such talents and selfless services to the country and the world?

How Kalam will be ranked by history? May be he himself should ponder this question while he is still in office.

Our Prime Minister  is completing three years in office. His assets are many. No less are his liabiltiies! He doesn’t seem to count in the scheme of things. Nor is he able to rise above the din by his unique qualifications to deliver any uplifting message to the country. A man  widely credited with  making economic reforms work in the country, now doesn’t know what  sort of economic reforms  he created! The people are no wiser either!

The PM is widely seen as surrounding himself with retired officials, some like the current Indian ambassador to the USA, have retired more than once! Yet, the PM is unwilling let these old worthies go!

Certainly, the PM is neither capable of spotting talents nor unwilling.

The PM is also sticking to his job for no apparent reason. The Cabinet is not cohesive, he reacts to juniors and he doesn’t himself articulate an inspiring vision.

Yes, in India we have promoted all sorts of adventurers, nothing wrong in a liberalised economy but the government must regulate the affairs in such a way there is no favouritism. There is open debate whether the next Finance Secretary will be appointed after consulting this or that big businessman! That is very disgusting, to say the least.

We are a mature democracy. Our Constitution is very vibrant. There is no more room for narrow views of society, be it OBC or curtailing states, rights or obligations. But there is an anarchical political situation in states, some state CMs behave as law unto themselves and even threaten the UPA.

It is unfortunate that Jyoti babu even uses such a language as to say “the Left can topple the UPA”. This from the Left, when its own house in W.Bengal is in disorder!

Unfortunately, we have inherited a political  tradition where we have the Communists still taking inspiration from outside the country and the BJP taking inspiration from outside our long period of national freedom struggle.

Who  are the best patriots in the country today? Congressmen? Not certainly ,these faces we encounter in New Delhi today! May the ones are made invisible! Not certainly, the CPM with its still childish prattle that is what we have to say. Nor the BJP which doesn’t read history, doesnt know history or only knows too well that distort history to damage the Indian traditions and values!

India has had a very long and very unfortunate past. After Ashoka, the country had always  stood  divided and diverse were the foreign intruders or foreign elements.

Somehow, the Indian nation as such had survived and moved on and even when 1947 came we had to inherit a divided India. Now to refuse to learn any lessons  and only incite communal passions and shed blood is truly Hitleranian nightmare.

The nationalist mainstream is very critical element to hold the country together, to hold the beliefs, customs and habits and way of life.

It is the great Indian way of life on which I urge our senior leaders to  give some thought and make some introspection. Let us make way for  the best talents to come forward and serve the nation!

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