Cousin Rangaraj sent me this link.
In Fight for Better India, Best to Look Within By ANAND GIRIDHARADAS
Published: July 1, 2011
A brief glance at any newspaper is certain to spoil the day for you. We in India are concerned for sure, and we try! Each day we see many articles in papers and interviews on TV which (over?)analyse, show disdain, turn to sarcastic humor, get cynical, go spiritual or become despondent. The anchors and the participants are experts now in enacting this daily drama. A sort of reality show.
Finally the conclusion we are able to arrive with some dejection and in apparent relief is 'it is in our genes'. My own conviction is that we do not want to change. If we do hear to the contrary it is mostly a posture and a pretense and just to show! (We call it 'katachara' in kannada!)
Aiming to be proactive I sought solutions:
On dealing with corruption, my suggestion was, to repeat, 'Amnesty to the corrupt as long as he or she deposits a percentage the unaccounted money stashed at home and else where, at a place of religion (Thappu kanike -guilt donation!). The governament would then collect 10% of the donations received in cash and kind.
My suggestion has some hope of success in Karnataka, especially if they are urged to go to Dharmasthala to offfer their guilt donations! Others states could follow suit. There may be some worries about a few spiritual places, some of them have been in the news recently. But we can rely on our Supreme court to keep an eagle eye on them.
There are many more issues, in addition to the ones mentioned in the article. The road rage for instance. Young speeding drivers who are formula one race aspirants. Who try their skills in residential areas where the police are usually missing. The police seen occasionlly in groups, who hide behind trees to trap drivers and collect fines for themselves and for the exchequer.Those who continuosly honk. Once I saw a sticker on a car which said 'Honk if you are horny'. If you have heard the cacophony you understand why India will soon have be the worlds largest population.
The list is endless! I was hoping that yoga guru Baba Ramdev and Sri Sri Ravishanker who teaches us to breathe well (what can one do if the cities are polluted!) would go beyond their speciality and take upon themselves more challenges and try to effect changes in the faulty genes in many of us. So far it seems the high and supreme court judges are our only hope. Of course not the retired ones!
I now quote from the aritlce:
"So what to do about it?
Misdiagnosis is dangerous. If the problem remains in the public mind a problem of bad people in power, it may well remain unsolved. If it can be acknowledged as a deeper pattern of Indian life, perhaps something can be done.
That something will have to be more than removing 10, 100 or 1,000 scoundrels from office.
It will have to turn practices now thought acceptable into practices that disgust. It will have to use shame and achieve what other movements of moral suasion — the anti-slavery movement in the 19th century, the anti-smoking cause in modern times — achieved: persuading millions of people, one by one, that the old ways will no longer do and that life will be better for everyone — for them and for their rivals at the airport gate — on the other side."
The writer probably hopes the Anna Hazare type of mass movement will initiate the changes which will finally change our genes as it were! First thing to change would be the DNA that has made us quite shameless.
While his single minded efforts are admirable, being unaware of the existance of other annahazared' villages next to his own village Ralegoan Siddi and all over India does not give me much hope. Where is the so called grass roots impact of his achivements I wonder?
It should not be that we are satisfied with just one model village. It is equivalent to us being happy with one Rama in the whole period of Tretayuga and possibly with only his janmabhumi Ayodya being the only place which could boast of Ramrajya!