The greatest sin that the UPA government committed when it came to power was to submit meekly to the dictates of the Communist Party, whether it goes under the name of CPI or CPM or whatever.
The fact remains that the Communists to their utter shame have been anti-nationalist going to the extent of playing a traitorous role during the Quite India Movement when hundreds of Congress patriots were betrayed, only to be sent to jail and tortured for which the comrades sought the praise of their British masters. It was again the Communists who actively supported Naxalism in Telangana with attendant violence.
And one has only to remember the support which the CPM in West Bengal gave to the Chinese invasion of India in 1962 and that, too, quite openly. That such an ignominious party should have a hand in denying respected men like Shivajirao Patil or Karan Singh candidacy to the presidentship of India shows to what depths of degradation Congress has allowed itself to be bullies into. That, in the end, the Congress was forced to support the candidacy of a lady of whose past the less said the better merely shows its ineffectiveness and utter incapacity to stand by any principles.
Who is ruling the country: The Congress or the Communists the latter of whose record in the only two states it has ruled, West Bengal and Kerala, especially in the past few months can only be described as genocidal. What is so pathetic about the Congress is that in a country of 1.2 billion people it has not been able to find one leader of outstanding merit to lead it and has to fall back on the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty whose footprints even in Uttar Pradesh are fast receding. At the same time the Prime Ministership has been reduced to total subservience to a person who exercises power without responsibility. And the general public belief is that no matter what the Constitution has to say about the responsibilities of the President, the new incumbent will have to think a hundred times before daring to exercise them. It is to such a sad state that this country has been reduced to. To describe the elevation of Pratibha Patil as an example of empowerment of women is the height of absurdity.
As The Times of India (July 27) in an article in its editorial columns noted, ?(If) the truth be told, one was downright disgusted and insulted when a woman as President of India was equated with the overall empowerment of women in the country.? ?Go ahead, fete Pratibha on her victory (but) just don'tcall it women'sempowerment. It is a symbolic sham and means very little? the article said, noting that Pratibha as ?a compromise candidate, what with the Left sticking to its guns and spiking the candidatures of other prospective candidates.? To speak about empowerment is a big joke. To speak about the empowerment of farmers is a still greater?and more painful joke. What has the Government done to farmers across the country?
Conservative estimates indicate that in Punjab alone, a state believed to be the most prosperous, there have been over 40,000 rural suicides over a period of eighteen years. Suicides in Maharashtra, a Congress-ruled state have been steadily increasing. In just the past one year according to The Hitavada (July 1) as many as 1, 251 farmers have ended their lives.
The Hitavada said: ?The agrarian crisis continues despite the PM'spackage?when the Prime Minister was announcing the package at Nagpur there was little trace of passion in his words, as if he was only completing a formality, going through the motions of a necessary evil?.? In Andhra Pradesh, more than 50,000 people from 650 villages have reportedly left their homes and now live in makeshift roadside shelters, thanks to Naxalite activities. And until there were strong protests, Christian missionaries were freely allowed to preach and practice conversion in the sacred quarters surrounding the Tirupati Temple.
The government seems incapable of doing anything positive. According to the Global Corruption Report, 2007, ?an estimated Rs 2,630 crore was the amount Indians coughed up as bribes to the judiciary? and no one has been penalised. The Prime Minister'sstatement that he spent sleepless nights over the plight of the family of an Indian Muslim doctor held in Australia for terrorist activities is only sickening.
The Indian Express (July 11) acidly wrote: ?The government'sinaction on probing the plot behind 7/11 is only matched by its sluggish efforts to bare the conspiracies and complicities behind the blasts at Varanasi, New Delhi and Hyderabad among others in a long list? These columns have consistently warned that the UPA government is showing itself to be unable or unwilling or both to face up to the security threat and counter it firmly? The UPA'spolicy drift vis-?-vis terrorism is especially clear when contrasted with the increasing sophistication of the response of other governments the world over.?
Added the paper: ?The reason why investigations into one high-profile strike after another never seem to progress beyond perfunctory charge sheets is not difficult to find. It lies in the Congress-led coalition'sunique politics. It draws upon a sequence of unexamined certitudes: That there is a monolithic ?Muslim vote? out there; that it can be courted only by a policy that refuses to call terror by its name; that, therefore, the Congress-led government cannot be seen to act unambiguously against terror. It doesn'tseem to strike either the leadership of the Congress or the Left that such a policy impoverishes the idea of secularism??
The Left is a gone case, specially in West Bengal which is now being freely overwhelmed by Muslims from across the border in their thousands, if not millions. The charge made by The Pioneer (June 29) that evidence suggests that ?Harkat-ul Jehad has now set up cells on this side of the border? and that the terrorist organisations ?has begun to spread its tentacles to other states, penetrating as far as Andhra Pradesh? indicates the sheer callousness of the UPA government towards India'ssecurity.
Only the other day Sonia Gandhi lectured to the BJP saying it must look inwards. That advice is best given to the UPA Government which is ruling the country and seems helpless in the face of terrorism?all for the sake of Muslim votes. To say it is sickening is to make an understatement. The UPA government is giving us sleepless nights with its indifference.
(The writer is a senior columnist and Hon. Director, Manipal Institute of Communication.)