Thursday, January 26, 2006

Happy Republic Day

A Happy republic day to everyone – January 26 – the day the greatest democracy in the World was constituted!
But let me put on my skeptical hat for some time –
Granted it is republic day and everyone is gung ho about it – I too am – I love to parade the Indian flag and feel great about it. But what are we really celebrating? This is the day our constitution was born – one of the best written constitutions in the world I am told – awesome – even if this was mentioned in the innumerous “India is Great” e-mails floating around – lets suppose it really is the bestest in the world! … It still exists only on paper!
We all seem to unanimously nod to the fact that India has great rules but pitiful enforcement!

So then why stop short of all the gung-ho about Republic Day. Why not earmark this day to take stock of all the shortcomings of our system … especially on our enforcement front! Not to point fingers at anybody but rather to simply generate a feeling that India is a democracy – by the people and more importantly “for” the people – its time we stood up and demanded our rights! Nothing more … nothing less.
A system where politicians with criminal records are not allowed.
A system where there are legal provisions to prosecute “guilty-as-charged” corrupt politicians.
A system where the people can look to the police for help.
And someday a system of self-governance … among other things!
Not that these things are far-fetched or unrealistic, but that it is our right and we should at least realize that – big step!
Lets take stock (at least today) on what has changed since the last time.
Happy Republic Day.

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