The dispensables

The focus of the state has narrowed down to a spotlight which can encompass only a few – the more-equal-than-others

pratap

Pratap Vikram Singh | November 10, 2012



In days of widening income inequality, Abraham Lincoln's phrase, 'government of the people, by the people and for the people', can be safely reversed. Government of the rich, by the rich and for the rich. In the Indian context, it hold truer than ever. Consider this: between 8 and 16 November, a significant population from the national capital travels to Bihar to be with their families in their hometowns during Chhath festival. According to a report published in the Hindi national daily, Jan Satta, on Saturday, the northern railway, in view of the increase in the number of passengers, decided to increase the number of coaches in Sampoorna Kranti Superfast Express (12394/93), not for the general category passengers but for the elites. 

Though adding another coach may not be the most brazen and shameless act, but doing it on the cost of another general and unreserved category coach, certainly is. The super-fast express has a total number of 24 coaches. Coach composition is as follows: 11 sleeper, 5 unreserved and one each for first AC, second AC, engine and guard. Since the train could not ferry more than 24 coaches, adding a coach was not an option. Slicing a coach from sleeper category would have invited wrath from the middle class. So slicing the number of general, unreserved category, became the most lucrative option for the authorities.
 

A half section of a general coach was made into a first AC and another half a second AC coach. The first AC category has arrangements for 10 VIP passengers and the second AC category can accommodate 18 passengers. However, in the general category, on an average around 200 persons accommodate themselves, even as the coach has the sitting capacity for 72. During the festival season, though many unreserved category trains are expected to run from major cities to Patna, but not a single such train has been made available.

This is not a singular example of the state’s propensity to find the scapegoat in the poorest.

Travelling through Manipur recently, I learned that the state capital Imphal receives an electricity supply of just four to five hours in a day (imagine what the situation will be in the rest three valley and five hilly districts of Manipur!). Interestingly, not all residents of Imphal have to succumb to this fate. The state government has a facility for uninterrupted power supply lines, knows as VVIP and VIP lines, for the high and mighty – the ministers, bureaucrats, businessmen and a few selected commercial centres.

It seems the focus of the state has narrowed down to a spotlight in a realm of utter darkness. It can encompass only a few – other than them of course. The domain of the dispensables is left to fend for itself until it’s time to go to the hustings. A brief spell of bunting, big talk and a renewed brotherhood, the spotlight will shift focus again. Ain’t it the incredible India?   

 

Comments

 

Other News

How three organisations came together to serve 9,000 cancer patients annually

There were many preventable cancer deaths in 2020 due to lack of medical care and access as the Covid-19 pandemic has shifted the entire attention from these chronic ailments to itself. A patient named Javed Khan, struggling with cancer and on chemotherapy, contracted Covid and he could not get underlying

Why Ayurveda needs a new apex body

Ayurveda: The True Way to Restore Your Health and Happiness By Dr. G. G. Gangadharan Ebury/Penguin, 224 pages, Rs 299 Dr G.G. Gangadharan, a champion of Ayurveda for three and a half decades, has penned an introductory book on India’s ancient

‘Extend Mumbai Model post-pandemic to improve civic services’

The ‘Mumbai Model’, which helped the city beat Covid-19, came in for praise from the supreme court too. The BMC can now extend that model of decentralisation for more efficiency in day-to-day citizen services and to make Mumbai a better-managed and future-ready city, says the Praja Foundation.

“No ratings certainly better than bad ratings”

Though there is no weekly viewership data for individual news channels coming since mid-October 2020, after allegations of manipulation of television rating points (TRPs) by three news channels, percentage of viewers watching news across the world doubled during lockdown. According to Avinash Pandey, CEO,

Delhi plans implement ‘Mumbai Model’ soon

A team of the Delhi government’s health department has visited Mumbai to learn from the city’s officials how to battle Covid-19 more efficiently, following the supreme court’s advice last month that the capital should learn from the ‘Mumbai model’ that has successfully control

Why India’s ranking on Happiness Index has been falling

The World Happiness Report, one of the best tools for evaluating global happiness, is based on how ecstatic people perceive themselves to be. It considers six characteristics to rank countries on overall happiness: GDP per capita, social support, life expectancy, freedom to make choices, generosity, and pe

Visionary Talk with Avinash Pandey, CEO ABP News Network on News Broadcast - Issues & Its Future



Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter