And now, with the elections barely a whisper away, it has been no-holds-barred fight among the contending parties, with decency, honesty, truthfulness being thrown overboard like dead carcasses into a turbulent sea. To say the least, it is sickening. The Congress has not a leg to stand on, considering its poor record. According to the Central Bureau of Investigation which has been so politicised as to be dubbed Congress Bureau of Investigation, it does not have sufficient evidence to prosecute former Union Minister Jagdish Tytler in a 1984 anti-Sikh riot case, when all the world knew that Tytler was fully engaged in the riots, during which a mob set afire the Gurudwara Pulbangash. What respect can one possibly have for the CBI?
Its record is increasingly getting to be suspect. Tytler, like Sajjan Kumar, may get acquitted, but that is not going to fool the ordinary citizen, just as the ?escape? of Ottavio Quattorichi from India, involved in the Bofors Scam, won't. The public knows who aided and abetted that escape. Then we have the case of Lalu Prasad Yadav, another disreputable character, who held the Congress to ransom during five years. As Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi recently noted, ?following the pressure of the Centre, the CBI did not file any appeal against the verdict of the Special Court which gave relief in a case (which is) an offshoot of the multi-crore rupee Fodder Scam.? Sushil Kumar Modi charged Lalu Prasad of extracting a heavy price from the Congress in lieu of his support to the UPA government and ?blackmailing? Congress continuously for five years.
Meanwhile, former Indian cricket captain, Mohammad Azharuddin banned for lifetime from playing cricket, has been given a Congress ticket for the Lok Sabha election from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh which has a very large Muslim population. What sort of secularism is the Congress showing? A criminal case has been filed against Congress leader Kagodu Thimmappa at a Magistrate'sCourt in Mangalore for saying that ?the hands of those who propagate Hindutva should be severed?. Why hasn'the been charged under the National Security Act as Varun Gandhi has been? Is it because he is a Congressman entitled to make a ?hate speech? without provoking government ire? Has Kagodu been arrested and jailed? What sort of justice are we doling out?
Varun Gandhi has been jailed. Fair enough. But consider the role of television channels. At least a couple of channels?should they be named??repeatedly telecast Varun Gandhi'stape. Broadcasting an event once or twice would be in order but repeating a telecast times without number is deliberately goading communal forces to riot. The UPA government did nothing to bring the channels to book. It is as if the UPA government was hand-in-gloves with the channels to damn BJP'sreputation. When the Election Commission believed that Varun Gandhi'sspeech was filled with hate and could cause communal disturbances, it was mandatory on the part of the same Commission to charge the offending TV channels with blatant misuse of power.
In an article in The Times of India (March 26) Madhu Purnima Kishwar noted how ?the 1970s and 1980s witnessed a series of communal riots presided over by the Congress Party in places like Meerut, Malliana, Jamshedpur, Kanpur, Bhiwandi, Bhagalpur, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad?. Are we supposed to forget Congress-led rioting because the party calls itself ?secular?? What kind of secularism are ex-UPA coalition partners exercising when the lethal caste combination of Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav and Ram Vilas Paswan form a caste alliance to fight the Congress, which latter now has hardly any presence either in Bihar or in Uttar Pradesh? Then there is the case of Sonu Kashyap who was murdered on October 21, 2008. Five ?unidentified? Muslims were accused of murdering him. The administration did nothing. When this led to public anger and street protests led by a former BJP legislator and Minister, Ram Saran Verma, he was promptly arrested and since then has been detained under the National Security Act?and is reportedly still in jail.
Verma is an unknown name and the government belief apparently is that such accidents are forgotten quickly and revenge can be exacted against a political opponent in total safety, considering what a short memory the public has. The point is that the Congress is showing itself to be highly unprincipled. There should be a limit for pacifying the so-called ?minorities? ?Minority reservations should be a thing of the past.? Crores of rupees are spent by the mullahs in setting up madrassas; these crores could be conveniently used to set up ?secular? colleges run by highly qualified staff to raise student standards. Muslim students should be able to compete with the best of the rest without having to be mollycoddled.
The Congress election manifesto speaks of private sector job quotas ?an unacceptable intrusion into the running of India Inc. Nobody should have the right to order private sector companies to allot a certain percentage of jobs to so-called minorities. If the Congress is allowed to get away with this what would prevent a government from laying down caste quotas as a vote-catching gimmick? When are we going to free ourself from the quota mania?
As one daily noted ?power seekers should understand that the quota systems perpetuation signals a political and institutional failure to create a genuine playing field.? The Congress is still living in the past when it was troubled by a bad conscience. It has now a Prime Minister nominated to the Rajya Sabha who refuses to stand for election and be truly a peoples? representative. And he is selected to the Rajya Sabha from an Assam quota, which is an insult to the Assamese people. Dr Manmohan Singh is a Punjabi and he should got nominated, if at all, from Punjab. This, too, goes unchallenged. It is ironical that the leader of the world's largest democracy should have no constituency, apart from Sonia Gandhi'skitchen and is forced to take orders from 10 Janpath on how to run the government. If that is not a matter of shame, what is?
What sort of Prime Minister do we have who is not elected by the people but is appointed by a party president? We have become the laughing stock of the world. What we have in India is not a Prime Minister but a Chief Executive Officer who dutifully takes his orders from the Congress Board of Directors. If Prime Ministers in India are to function like CEOs, then one might as well ask Infosys to supply a suitable candidate for the job. At the very least he would be more competent, technologically, than Dr Singh. This is what happens when the people accept malpractices meekly and do not revolt. But courage must emanate from the Prime Minister'soffice. Sadly we must accept LK Advani'sdescription of Dr Singh as a weak man. Weak, he is. And it shows glaringly.