Congress needs to do more on corruption
The sacking of Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and the removal of Suresh Kalmadi from the position of the Congress Parliamentary Party’s secretary is certainly not enough. The Grand Old Party of India needs to do much more to regain the confidence of the people in respect of its determination to tackle corruption.
The impression going around is that Kalmadi has been axed because of huge corruption in the Commonwealth Games preparations. His sacking is from the CPP post and not from the Indian Olympic Association, which he heads. He continues to be the single most important figure so far as our sports administration goes. Many would also argue that he has been singled out unfairly since the scams during the Games were much bigger if one looks at the roles of the Urban Affairs Ministry, the Delhi government and its allied agencies, the Sports and Tourism ministries. What about people in these ministries. Why should they not be in the net also?
The counter argument would be that the Prime Minister’s inquiry panel has yet to submit is report and therefore it would be premature to hold ministers or ministries responsible. I am not suggesting that the political heads were personally involved in corruption but they are accountable if those working under them are involved. That is how the system works. Going by the same example why should Kalmadi and Chavan be held responsible since charges against them have yet to be proved. The answer is that all of them are accountable and any wrongdoing must not go unpunished. If after inquiry there are found to be innocent, they could be reinstated. But the moot point is that all of them must relinquish their offices to enable an impartial investigation.
I again repeat that corruption in CWG did not begin and end with Kalmadi. Its tentacles and roots are much longer and stronger. That is what needs to be nailed in order to satisfy the people. The opposition parties seem satisfied with this little action and are not asking for action against others in the CWG corruption. They are merely targeting A Raja whose continuation is unacceptable but is there because of compulsions of coalition politics.
Corruption is a very important and worrying issue in this country but the two major parties do not seem to think so. Their responses are inadequate. Even in the Maharashtra scam, why is no action been announced or taken against other political functionaries and of course the serving and retired senior officials of the defence forces. How can they be allowed to get away?
This country needs to be reminded that just because there was a strong perception of the involvement of the popular Congress government in the Bofors scandal in the eighties, a charismatic and mass leader like Rajiv Gandhi lost the Lok Sabha polls in 1989. Perception is as important as reality and those in power must know this. The short point is that punish the guilty but taking action against Chavan and Kalmadi is not sufficient. What about others. They should be brought to book also.