I am always surprised and appalled that the government of India as well as all the many state governments refuse to take responsibility to ensure the safety of this country’s citizens by making sure that the tenets of our Constitution are upheld and brought into play in the governance of India. The leaders are accountable to all citizens and not merely to the factions, communities, faiths or castes that they may be parts of. They are elected under the banner of our democracy and must conserve and consolidate the plurality of Bharat and India. The failure of leadership is tearing to shreds the fabric and ethos of India, in a way that may well trigger a violent future.
Governments and leaders have increasingly abdicated their oath of office. Many such national and regional office holders, in politics as well as in the administration, have been swayed into taking part in illegal actions by blackmailers and wild threats from fringe and extremist groups. Their congenital weaknesses and inability to stand by the laws of this land have damaged our democracy, attacked our thinkers and stalwarts, abused our personal and collective freedoms. Together, these frightening realities, which are burgeoning like a fatal virus, have assaulted the memory of our founding fathers. The sacrifices made by M.K. Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Vallabhbhai Patel, B.R. Ambedkar and their peers, have been insulted by the political class that rules India today. The lack of engagement and a complete failure to abide by the Constitution are the most shameful political truths of the first decade of this new millennium.
We desperately need a new generation leader, one who is not greedy for power and money, who will stand up to defend the fragile and layered civilization that is India. Nothing short of that one hundred per cent commitment will alter the course we are on. This new generation has the responsibility to fight for freedom of thought and action within the law and Constitution and work to galvanize the many millions with a future ahead of them; to create a living and working environment that is secure, safe, and lawful, that allows for growth and productivity in all disciplines. Will the ruling dispensation step away from its luxuries, onto the volatile streets, and reach out to Indians? Will the chief executive of India lead the way? Or will they all mouth some inanities that we, in the public space, know are meaningless, without motivation and, therefore, inadequate to rectify the horrors that besiege us at all levels?
History has vivid examples of the dangerous repercussions of mal-governance, of lethargic and faulty administration, of the misuse by the State of its own drafted and established laws that disregard transparency and accountability. I am always amazed at the arrogance of those who have betrayed and failed one billion people. They seem to have no self respect as they brazenly walk the talk, pretending to be oblivious of ground truths. Half a century and more down the road of freedom from our colonial masters, we have nothing tangible to show that we are less divisive and exploitative, even though we are being ruled by our own government.
The scary part of what has enveloped us and is choking us to moral and intellectual death is that when those in power speak out against communities and faiths, they get away with it. In contrast, the intellectuals and thinkers who are pondering the many questions that India needs to address in these changed times, are threatened, silenced and assaulted. And, there is no one in a prime position of power to protect the intrinsically plural people of this great, young, federal democracy. To stall this spirit of liberation of the mind and soul can only be defined as being anti-national.