A sine qua non for peace & prosperity

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Highlights

The BJP has come out with yet another sting operation against the AAP leadership to score a brownie point.

The BJP has come out with yet another sting operation against the AAP leadership to score a brownie point. On its part, the latter has levelled allegations against the Lieutenant Governor's office itself and also went on to claim that the BJP was spending thousands of crores in buying the Opposition MLAs. Blame game continues between the TRS and the BJP. The Congress Shiv Sena and NCP and the BJP too are having bouts. Mamata didi and her colleagues are also on a sparring note with the BJP central leadership.

Either everyone is clean or corrupt. In politics, now-a-days, one can only be this or that. The root cause of the problem concerns accountability here and not anything else. The presiding officers of legislative bodies of our country had gone into this question in 1996 and observed: "The chain of accountability – of the civil service to the political executive; of the political executive to the legislature and of the legislature to the people has got snapped all the way. Accountability should be restored at all echelons."

Accountability in essence should become a part of our style of working. It is an issue of probity and standards in public life. This is not merely a problem of the political world. Take for example the case of the Lingayat Mutt of Karnataka who is accused of rape. Accountability should step in here, too. As the head of a mutt, the seer who gets funds from the people must be accountable to the people and to the society that he claims to be serving as a guiding spirit. So it is in the case of the business world. Ensuring probity and standards in public life is needed for carrying credibility with the public, apart from its importance for its own sake.

Credibility is to be carried by demonstrable action rather than public pronouncements. Bilkis Bano case is a fit case to be discussed here. The criminal rapists and murderers released by the government and the following public honouring of those criminals are examples of both accountability and credibility. Were they released because they were Hindus (and Brahmins as a BJP leader put it) or because the victims were non-Hindus? The problem should be handled where it originates. Punitive action for devious behaviour is ex post facto in nature. Political parties should evince care in the right choice of candidates, including with reference to their antecedents, their education and training.

There is a need for the people themselves to exercise their franchise with great caution and return to the legislative bodies candidates reputed for their probity and aptitude for public service. The country should now be concerned over not just criminalisation but also ghettoisation. The second leads to more of the first, too. Deliberate support to criminal tendencies, if not curbed at the very beginning, lead to disastrous consequences. Societal peace is the basic requirement for bringing about socio-economic development.

Should we not introspect over all these things? Let us also not forget that politicisation of administration is a bigger crime. We have become a dehumanised society thanks to some aggressive concepts where all those who break the law and turn immoral seem to flourish. Spare a thought.

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