An open letter to Anna Hazare PUBLIC REPORTER
If you would recall Anna Ji , we had last month appeared together on NDTV, for their popular Humlog programme related to corruption. Mr Prashant Bhushan, Swami Agnivesh and an ex IAS officer (who has resigned) were the other persons on the panel.
Among other things, which were discussed you had indicated that you were going to meet the PM, the next day, about the proposed Jan Lok Pal Bill and in case the PM did not agree to your demands/suggestions then you would resort to fast unto death from 5th April, at Jantar Mantar.
Well, that is a history now and the PM, very readily agreed to form a panel!
Having spent my all career(in the government) taking on the unethical system head on, just out of a call of conscience and finally winning the battle with the intervention of the courts, after about twenty five years(my so called battle is on public domain-websites www.giraffe.org at link find a hero and www.setindia.com/cid,) the alacrity, with which your demands were accepted in such a short time, by the government, which I served for about thirty five years, infact, pleasantly surprised me!
There have been/were arguments, discussions in the media that perhaps the support of your cause all over in India and even abroad by the civil society and youth in particular and thus huge support, could be the reason for the Government to concede your demands for forging a `Bill` which could effectively and efficiently address the corruption in the country, which the civil society also felt had assumed serious proportions.
The civil society is absolutely right to demand and expect that corruption which to my mind, is now like AIDS/HIV of our governance system, needs to be effectively addressed/treated. Therefore the following questions come to my mind, Anna Ji -
How have you assumed that there would be some efforts by the political establishment and a section of bureaucracy to derail the Bill?
How can you satisfy the Nation and the Civil Society esp youth that the five members of your group i/c yourself , have all the needed administrative, legal, social, technical negotiating acumen and skills to steer the negotiations in an amiable and effective manner to achieve the desired objectives viz arresting corruption in the country? What procedure of selection Anna ji, you have used to include them in the group?
Isn`t it only that they prepared the drafts of amended Bill? The premise that many were consulted during making the draft, to my mind does not convince many.
Why only five members to steer the drafting of this very important Bill? No member , to my knowledge has any long experience of personally, taking on the corrupt system, having he been himself, in the government? Why not a few more, erudite, seasoned men of proven integrity who initially were not connected with the preparation of the draft and with open minds. You will agree, that there are many of such kind in our country.
How the working of the administrative/political establishment and loopholes therein,would be envisaged minutely and effectively addressed, by the existing members?
How you and your group with noble intentions, will find the 'tall person' of high integrity, attitude, stature, personality, to man the post of Jan Lok Pal and for how long and also the persons who will man his office and rid the country of corruption?
What are the checks and balances in the proposed Bill, that they would not go astray?
How various existing Acts and the proposed Bill are going to/would be enforced/implemented?
Corporate world is an integral part of our economy/governance as various scams have brought out. How with the enactment of Jan Lok Pal Bill, mindsets of everyone will change and in what time-frame and Ram-Rajya will be in India?
Why the political establishment is only painted black and termed corrupt? What about bureaucracy, corporates, judiciary and the media and sizable members of civil society? Corruption happens, to my mind, because of demand side and supply side.
The Supreme Courts, the High Courts Judges, the President, the PM, the CVC, the CBI,the CAG, the Secretaries of the Govt of India and the chain of senior ministers and officers both at the state and the central level are very very responsible positions and have been given very big powers and responsibilities as per the Constitution ,then what have been the reasons for their non performance of some and how Jan Lok Pal is going to be the panacea of all the ills of the Nation? Yes, Anna Ji, your desire is superb! But, how the noble objectives are going to/will, be achieved need elucidation, for the knowlege of civil society?
How the fears of some, of derailment of democratic process, going to be addressed besides demands of representations from various sections of society, which will unneccessarily create bad blood and dissipation of energy ,resources and time?
The need, to my mind is an amiable, focussed, pragmatic process and enlightened open minds and not the confrontationist path which Anna Ji your well intentioned movement, I am afraid, has already taken.
Let an amiable, effective, efficient and judicious approach be taken simultaneously, for reasons to prevail upon the minds of even those who indulge in corruption, so that they also start falling in line and work together for corruption-less India.
Let us rally together to, as well, change the mindsets of all those in the governance system and corporate world, who have gone astray and are making illegal money and stashing the same abroad.
Let us also include civil society and the youth in this yagya of changing the mind-sets.
The government from their side need to consider all those persons of civil society/establishment, who are against corruption and have themselves never indulged in corruption, as their (the government) well wishers and assets of the nation.
They need to be encouraged in many ways.
The government should also, on their own, take strict punitive measures against all those who have indulged in unethical and corrupt practices. Let values and ethics rule the minds of the homogeneous group.
Finally, why the governmentt group and Anna group?