A huge cry from the so called civil society of India was heard in different leading newspapers. A few social activists led thousands of others into a movement against corruption through fasting. They wanted Jan Lokpal Bill to come through.

All was well till then. Social activists were doing a great job in enlightening our population about the rampant corruption prevailing all around. But as the fasting progressed intensely, the true intention surfaced. A few people rose to the seat of power for decision-making through backdoor surpassing our democratic process – through selections and interviews. Parliamentary democracy took a backseat. These people termed themselves to be a part of People’s Parliament – an alternative to country’s Parliament! A sense of movement preached by these few members attempted to create an atmosphere of chaos similar to Middle East and North Africa.

We need to be worried about the series of these developments. India is already in the path of experimentation of its young democratic system. Though cast in the line of our erstwhile colonial rulers’, the repeated collective efforts by Indian people have truly exposed the strength and weakness in Indian Nation – rich cultural diversity, large base of technical manpower and growing economic power on one hand, and fractured society in religious and cast lines, strong influence of crowd phenomena on people be they educated or not, growing regional consciousness among Indians. In spite of all these, we believe in our parliamentary democracy, and are striving to strengthen it for our better future as a Nation.

Now, some people get together with an intention (good or bad) and call that it is voice of the whole country! How do they claim to represent the entire civil society of India? Do they not believe in our existing democratic process?

If they do, they need to reach out to the very people of the country, and enter into the Parliament through electoral means. Everybody in our country has the right to enter into politics and to serve the country. If certain groups of politicians or even the entire conglomerate of the existing political groups go rotten, they need to be eliminated from democratic power structure through electoral process. Go to people. Do not preach Middle East or Egypt scenarios in India; it’s different – we are a democracy already. Do not enter into power structure through backdoor – preach for power and responsibility along with accountability. People enjoying power must be accountable to people of India. As social activists, they should have enlightened the people of India to be more vocal and more conscious about their rights and responsibilities.

If they do not believe in our existing form of democratic system, let them express it clearly and publicly. Do they fear?

The same very people chose a few places like the capital of the country and certain states to receive maximum media attention. Neither these people nor the media choose to go to smaller towns or villages. Are those people not a part of India or are their views irrelevant? Has anybody forgotten the fate of India Shining campaign? Haves or have-nots have the same rights and responsibilities. Geographical privileges must be abandoned if one would advocate democracy. Is there any need for such irresponsible act in the name of social activism? That is why we need to worry.

We already have a democratic system in place. This system seems to be defunct at many times as our entire population is not vocal. Many people live in conditions deprived of basic facilities including their access to information. They are very much the part of our society, and they cannot be deprived of being called civil. We must include them in the democratic process like M K Gandhi had done several decades ago. Please do not make a farce of democracy by fasting in capital cities of the country. Go back to your root!


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