Anna exposes UPA’s incompetence
The events of the last few days leading to the arrest of social activist and Gandhian Anna Hazare and its political fall out have left no one in doubt that the present UPA government seems to be incapable of governance. The entire affair was so badly handled that it has galvanized the anti Congress forces throughout the country. The mishandling has contributed to the growing stature of Anna Hazare who is appearing to be setting the agenda and calling the shots despite backing unconstitutional arguments to press his demands.
Yes, so far as corruption goes, Anna Hazare has brought the issue into focus nationally and no one can take away the credit from him. In the times of these scams and scandals, he is seen as a crusader who wants to take this issue to the masses. But one is forced to disagree with him on the point of enacting a Bill merely on the strength of the belief of a section of the civil society. Yes, the civil society or its representatives have the right to put forward their view but it is Parliament alone which has the right to enact laws—whether one likes it or not. The sovereignty and authority of Parliament cannot be undermined under any circumstances.
The Congress has been making allegations of foreign funding to Anna’s movement without substantiating it. Even if it is true, people are not prepared to buy this viewpoint because the credibility of the party and the government is nothing to boast about. On top of it, the party has also accused Anna Hazare of being corrupt and mentioned a figure of 2.25 lakhs spent on his birthday. The whole thing looked to be a joke when one compares 2.25 lakhs to 1.78 lakh crores believed to be the loss in the 2G scam alone. The language used by the Congress spokesman was unpardonable and the party should show greater propriety and form while even attacking its adversaries. This is the least one expects out of the Grand Old Party.
The UPA government made a fool of itself with its poor handling of the situation and played straight into Anna’s hands.
By arresting him and denying him the permission to protest, the UPA has done incalculable harm to itself and its sagging image. I am sure there could have been better ways of dealing with the crisis, which has accentuated with some stupid and inept handling instead of being defused. The problem with this government is that either highly qualified Supreme Court lawyers who have scant knowledge of how law works at the CrPc and IPC level or those who have joined the party from other outfits are running the show. In addition, the lateral entries into politics are adding to the confusion. In short, the original Congressmen are by and large content at seeing things from the sidelines having been marginalized by those who controlled the levers of power for the past few years. In the process, there is only cosmetic support for the government. Secondly, there are some ambitious Congress leaders who are making use of the occasion to precipitate power politics. This is being done at the cost of the party and the government’s interests.
The BJP is no better and knows that strengthening of Team Anna is to its detriment. It is therefore happy playing second fiddle to the ill advised government and is only content with Performa protests.
I feel that Anna Hazare has put the UPA, NDA and the entire political class on the back foot. I do not think it is good for our democracy but that is how things are. Corruption is a major issue and Parliament has to now collectively address it in a big way and not merely by lip service. The solution has to be found by Parliament and not by any individual representing any civil society group. We must thank Anna for showing how impotent and ineffective those who run this political system have become. The Political class should treat it as a wake up call.