You can't keep snakes in your backyard
and expect them only to bite your neighbours.
The US secretary of State, Ms. Hillary Clinton said this while in Pakistan. The analogy seems to apply to all others as well – Nations, smaller organizations and Individuals.
And, yet many people seem to indulge in this –knowingly and unknowingly – just hoping that the snakes in their backyard will bite the neighbours only.
For example -some people in India support Naxalites and almost everything that they do, blindly, when they are in the Opposition. But, they face the music from Naxalites when they come to Power. It happens in India in various states – all the time.
In North Eastern states, every state seems to have such outfits with different names. And, nobody knows what the Governments do with them. In some other states, there are Political parties, who periodically indulge in violence, against some section or other of the people – and go scot free.
Every Political Party when it is in Power misuses the Police forces - but when in Opposition, it decries the same misuse of Power by the current Ruling Party / Parties- against itself. The Ruling Parties almost always support the brutalities of the Police – and never even think of reforming the system.
How do we in India deal with demonstrations and protests? Britain too has strikes and demonstrations by its Citizens. USA also has these types of public protests – like the latest wall street Protests. How are they dealt with by the UK and US police? How many citizens were injured and how much? Very few; Very little.
One Ex-Police officer said in one TV channel some days ago – that her superiors when she was working in a state – had ordered her that her police should break the bones of the Protestors there. Of course she tactfully avoided it, she says. But, the orders for breaking of bones seems to happen many times in all such Protests in India, peaceful or not so peaceful. When are we going to reform?
There are Rowdies in every city, town and even villages. Somehow – we find, they are going scot free. Rowdy, by definition, is out to commit some crime or other – as a profession. If they are watched proactively by some type of special agency, ninety percent of crimes in India can perhaps be prevented. There does not seem to be any such arrangement in India. The Rowdies even contest elections on the ticket of this or that Political Party – and win many times. They then grow up in two professions. Rowdyism and Politics. Snakes are growing powerful.
We have stinking corruption from north to south and east to west. We have it on the Roads, in offices, Police stations, Ministries – and Temples too. The stink is suffocating the world – not merely India. But, we will all wait to defame all people fighting this stinking corruption – and then the fight will end. When there is no fighter left, there is no fight either. The Corruption remains. I don’t think the corruption has come down by one percent since the Team Anna started some sort of a fight against it. I think more and more People need to join the movement or start their own movements against corruption. And, come together at National level as a joint force. Else, the corrupt people will find all possible ways to extinguish the fight against corruption.
Swami RamDev started the fight to bring back Black money. Now, he is facing a number of investigations – and given the time that it takes in India, RamDevji will be busy with those investigations, cases etc – and Black money will be safe wherever it is.
Team Anna is entering a similar phase. Some people want to find just anything to malign them, defame them and put some cases on them. It is going on. Given that nobody born on the earth (at least in Indian environment) can claim to be 100 percent pure and sinless, you can always find some thing against any one, if you dig deep enough.
By the way, how many people in India do you think are corrupt? 10 percent? 20 percent ? Or more? What about people who have paid bribes for one purpose or other? 20 percent? 40 percent? 60 percent? I don’t know! Assuming that the Givers and takers are two different sets – with just a little overlapping – You put almost the whole of India in the dock – if you dig deep enough.
There is a story dating back over five centuries into our history. King Krishna Deva Raya of Vijaya Nagar in South – wanted to honour his HONEST and HARD WORKING CITIZENS by holding a small party for them, with sweets, snacks, milk etc. There was no coffee or tea in those days. Every thing else was available in the King’s godowns (where grains etc are stored) - except the daily requirement of milk. There were no refrigerators in those days.
So, the king ordered that all citizens of Vijaya Nagar must pour some milk from their homes – into a huge vessel kept at the four roads Junction before the Royal Palace. Next day morning – all citizens promptly lined up before the huge vessel and complied with the King’s order. In the evening, the King and his ministers (including his famous courtier, Tenali Rama, whose idea was this), came to the Big vessel – and looked in. The Vessel was full – but with pure water. The king understood the lesson that Tenali Rama wanted to teach him – and became more vigilant and practical later. He started ensuring more honesty among his ministers, officials and other key personnel. Vijaya Nagar did prosper a lot later during his regime and people too became really more honest later.
You can’t have dishonest Ministers and officials and expect public to be more honest than them. It simply is not possible.
The corrupt snakes are biting the public all the time. And, making them corrupt too. So, where do you start? Start at the top – at central and state Governments both. That is why a strong Lok Pal and Lok Ayukth are essential – to deal with the higher ups.
And the most corrupt officials must come under their scanner very urgently. If the bottom man is corrupt – expect that the top men too are corrupt – a lot more, not less.
It is not that there is no honesty in India. There is. For instance, almost no one doubts the integrity o our Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh. Some may call him weak Prime Minister – but certainly an honest one. Likewise, there are many honest persons in various parties. The problem is, the dishonest men are heavily organized. And we do vote for them too - on some ground or other. That is the problem. Now, the honest men must come together.
Let us face some inconvenient facts. Even the most honest person also may have some small things to hide. Like Jesus said – those of you, who have not committed a single sin may throw the first stone. By that yard stick – there will be none left to fight corruption or any other evil in India. It was so in Christ’s days, as the story indicates. No one had the courage to throw the first stone. So, some small black spots in persons who really want clean, non corrupt society in India – will be there but these should not matter for us at this pint of time.
When the Augean stables are getting cleaned – all of the small black spots will also be wiped out. We will become a much cleaner Society.
At this point of time – let us not hate the small sinners – they are all forced into it by the BIG SINNERS. The Die-Hard ones. Let us not keep these huge snakes in our backyard.
I certainly like the way – Ms. Hillary put it. It is an old saying anyway. Old wisdom. But, many of us in India too are growing different type of snakes, be it terrorism, rowdyism, corruption, or other social sins, and we are expecting them to bite only our neighbours.
Let us come out of this stupor.
* * * E N D * * *