Be the change

Politician-bashing is at its peak these days, with Arvind Kejriwal and the AAP making all kinds of allegations against all politicians, insinuating that all politicians are corrupt. Many of us are happy to agree with these insinuations. After all, by pronouncing politicians (and bureaucrats, officials and policemen) guilty of corruption and other sins, we give ourselves the status of ‘poor victims’.

My question is: how good are we, the people of India?
1. Have I always paid Income Tax in full, declaring all my income?
2. Have I never bought/used smuggled goods?
3. Have I never bribed a policeman or a government servant?
4. Have I never spoken on my cellphone while driving?
5. Have I never engaged child labour?
6. Have I never used official facilities (car, telephone, etc.) for personal use?

I have listed 6 questions, but there are many more. We should ask ourselves these questions. If we can answer YES to all these questions, we have the right to criticise politicians (and bureaucrats, officials and policemen). If not, it’s high time we all try to change ourselves.

While almost all, if not all of us have indulged in small and big acts of corruption, most of us will claim that we did not do so voluntarily, but only because the system (to use Rahul Gandhi’s favourite punching bag!) forced us to do so. Is that true? I don’t think so.

I believe we voluntarily indulge in small and big acts of corruption because:
a. We have an aversion for hard work. Hence, we always look for shortcuts.
b. We believe that the end justifies the means.
c. Our society respects wealth, irrespective of the manner in which it was acquired.

Politicians (and bureaucrats, officials and policemen) are only the face of the problems facing India. The body of these problems is we, the people of India. Democracy is “government of the people, by the people, for the people”. If people are good, government (politicians, bureaucrats, officials and policemen) will be good. If people are bad, government (politicians, bureaucrats, officials and policemen) will be bad.

If we want the country to change for the better, each one of us must change for the better. If we change, politicians, bureaucrats, officials and policemen will change. If we do not change, politicians, bureaucrats, officials and policemen will not change. Change has to begin with us.

As Gandhiji had said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

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7 thoughts on “Be the change

  1. Show me a single Indian who will truthfully, with a hand on his heart, have ‘Nos’ for as many, if not all, your well meaning questions! It’s like in the Bible of ‘he that hasn’t sinneth throw the stone’ or the Buddha asking the grieving mother to get an handfull of sesame from a house that has not seen a death!

    When the Anti-corruption movement was launched by an ex-army havaldar driver, all of us went ga-ga and middle class India came out into the streets to support him. Kejriwal, an IITian Magsaysay Awardee and the no-nonsense Kiran/Crane joining hands added to the initial lustre.
    Money just flowed in in crores and there started the rub. Instead of being banked into the IAC bank account it went to another Trust. A blatant breach. The ‘intense’ Jan Lokpal turned out to be a Jokepal.

    The once apolitical AK jumping into the electoral battle was his undoing. Perhaps if only Anna had campaigned, AK would have had an absolute majority and he’d still be Delhi CM. He quit because he felt that he couldn’t effectively deliver good governance with a rag-tag of Bharti & Co., an unlawful Law Minister.

    If he had continued, then who’d have opposed NaMo at Varanasi? Perhaps the ‘referendum’ will take the call!

    After all it is rightly said that Politics is the last resort of a scroundrel!
    Politics is a Ganga that washes off all sins! RaGa’s rotten to the core ‘system’ needs a hard bashing too!

  2. Very well-put questions. I do cheat my daughters to get an extra piece of chocolate/pastry. 😛 That’s the lowest level of cheating. Like Rishi, I too believe that all of us engage in some form or other of corruption, but it gets more powerful and dangerous towards the upper end of the ladder. But yes, we ought to change if we want to see some change.

  3. Pingback: Tangy Tuesday Picks - 7 amazing Indian blog posts to be read.

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