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Posts Tagged ‘opinion’

Dummies Guide to Indian Politics – Part 2

Posted by Neeraj Kumar on July 8, 2012

Continued from here.

Pundits will say, you are a good politician if you can slap someone’s bottom hard without hurting your hand and without making that someone feel too bad about it. Let’s quickly look at some of the planks this game is played on. Voters will be regularly referred to as ‘vote bank’. This is apt as an election win can take you laughing all the way to the bank.

Caste Politics: India has history of recognising people first by their birth, then by their deeds. So, you are first a dalit and then a bank manager. You are first a Brahmin and then a professional. Dalit considers other Dalits as ‘own people’ and brahmin considers other brahmins as its ‘own people’. Our heart generally goes out to our family, our caste, our region and our country, in this order. So, a Dalit’s leader vote bank is the Dalit community. He promises the moon for ‘his people’ and generally makes the promise with a straight face. This is key. You can’t be a good politician if you can’t keep your emotions in check and hide your true feelings. And you always got to leave the exit door open. So, in India you are a dalit leader, brahmin leader, muslim leader, backward or a forward leader. So, the formula to success is quite simple. Make sure the liquid stays insoluble (communities don’t gel), keep your flock together and if possible create division in your adversary’s vote bank. Simple.

Dynastic Politics: This is the kind of politics where the reins of political leadership is limited to a family. One thing that needs to be appreciated is that politics is not just a social service, if that. This is also a business where you try to make money and try to secure the future of your family. Thus, it is quite natural for a ‘Lalu Prasad Yadav’ to make his wife, Rabri Devi, as Chief Minister of Bihar and Congress making Sonia Gandhi its commander in chief. This country, some say, owes a lot to the Gandhi family with the fight for independence and all. But, there are also those daring mavericks who claim that in last few years, Gandhi family has started owning a lot to this country. Literally! But, who wants to get in the middle of these silly fights. Not me. Who cares if Sonia Gandhi is the most powerful individual in India. Who cares if she is Italian by birth and whatever Mr Subramanian swamy  has to say here. Aren’t we the proud largest democracy of the world? In that case, elevation of individuals like Sonia Gandhi, Rabri Devi, Mayawati, Mulayam Singh to the coveted political positions can only be jewels in our large democratic crown. If an IAS officer cleaning Mayawati’s sandals can appreciate this, why can’t we?

Developmental Politics: This is the rare and risky form of politics where politician works towards the development of his/her jurisdiction and hopes to please people. Why is it risky? Well, strictly speaking, opportunity to make money for your family might be small if you are going to use that money for development. If people don’t recognise your development or choose to vote based on caste, you are stumped. You will not have money and might well get kicked out. That is pure dumb. So, what do you do? Rule is to make sure you don’t leave the first flavour of politics – caste politics. Make sure you don’t give everything to the public at once as you won’t have anything to offer when the elections come. So, you got to be very systematic in what you give. If you give a rocket to your son as his first gift, what do you give him next? So, you got to start with a cycle and slowly upgrade it all the way up to a rocket.

India is a proud country. Thats the reason any finger raised in its direction meets with an outrage. It’s our country to spoil. Leave us alone.

India is not a country of equals. Not by a country mile. Reservation based on caste at the pretense of promoting equality is a cynical political game that politicians love to play as if they have to make sure it keeps breathing as there is no value of a dead. They have to make sure communities don’t gel. They have to make sure liquids stay insoluble.

Posted in Controversy, India | Tagged: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Dummies Guide to Indian Politics – Part 1

Posted by Neeraj Kumar on June 23, 2012

It is well known that there are three things that unite India – Cricket, Bollywood and Politics. You might ask, ‘Politics? Really?’.  While bandwagon of stars pull people towards Cricket and Bollywood, politics in India- on most days, is looked down upon. But, if we dig a bit deeper, we quickly realise that politics is engrained in every strain of our body. Lesson starts from a very early age right when we are at school. You are compelled to side with a particular group to create a stronger group dynamic to when you move to college where its all about getting a girl or a boy often resulting in gossips, backstabbing, fights and at times a compromise – you take that girl and I take the other one. And when you come back home, the fight is all about being the superior sibling either by growing on your own foot or cutting someone else down to size. How your life turns out depends on how well you navigate these social strains. So, by the time you turn 18, you are already well-oiled and are super confident to pass judgements and we do that without regret or remorse which is fair because we all have been well-trained, right? We folks in India are strongly opinionated. We have an opinion on everything and god forbid if you don’t listen. And why wouldn’t you listen because then its your turn to express yourself as we all are graduates of the same training school.

So, what happens when a nation of well trained, strongly opinionated fellas take the street? That’s right. While the strength of our nation, some say, is its diversity, those diverse communities live like different type of insoluble liquids poured in to a jar. While this might not seem very attractive, it brilliantly lays out ground for very colourful politics. I called it colourful but, some choose to call it dirty. To each his or her own.

Ok, so most of us are politicians in one form or the other. May be. But, what is that to do with Indian politics? And if each of us are so well-oiled, why don’t we enter the fray and try to take our country to where it belongs- right at the top? Aha! Now that I have been asked that question, you are exactly where I wanted you before we dive in to the “colourful” world of Indian Politics!

Part 2 continued here.

Posted in Controversy, India, Life | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

 
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