16th August - Thousands of people flocking streets - court arrest - peaceful protests all night
Amid controversies surrounding the government’s version of the Lokpal Bill, Anna Hazare has risen to the stature of an indomitable Gandhian, who has united India both literally and otherwise. The 74-year-old crusader against corruption has indeed awakened the sluggish souls, thereby reminding them of their fundamental rights to protest for good governance that is devoid of corruption.
Anna Hazare is no ordinary human. He is well read and has been walking his talk for many years now. The government could do little to curb Anna and his followers from doing what they intended to do. The Delhi Police denied giving them permission to hold indefinite fast at the Jaiprakash Narayan Park opposite Feroze Shah Kotla in Delhi, which was scheduled to start 16th August. However, Anna and Co. showed their power to the ruling government - people’s power.
Streets overflowing with swarm of humanity, waving tricolour, singing and sloganeering in tandem is what Anna had wanted and rightly so. For he knows there is nothing greater than the people of India, that is ideally world’s largest democracy. Anna conveniently managed to wake up people from their slumber and showed them a new way.
Just one word from Anna and people are there to give their all, for they know he is fighting for the future of this nation. So what if Anna was taken into preventive custody much before he could kick-start his anshan
; the Delhi Police sowed the seeds for a revolution that germinated across the nation. Anna’s magic is viral and everyone feels Anna within.
Sadly, many people from the civil society have a different perspective about Anna and his team’s version of the Lokpal Bill and they believe Anna is being adamant by imposing himself on the government. They think that the modern day Gandhi has shown disrespect towards Parliament, but little do they know that Anna’s draft is crafted keeping public interests at large.
One needs to understand why Anna is hell bent on forwarding his draft to Parliament. He believes in the Jan Lokpal Bill because he feels it will benefit people. Had Anna not made a noise about corruption, black money and the Jan Lokpal Bill, an average Indian wouldn’t have even known what it stands for!
Detractors of this Anna fever might debate over the fact that most of the supporters are ignorant about the Bill and that it wouldn’t be wise on the government’s part to succumb to such undue mass pressure. Whether or not a layman is aware of what the bill means, Anna has been able to do what the Mahatma did prior to independence - weave countrymen in a common string irrespective of caste, creed and colour.
Parliament represents the people chosen by the people. So to say that the government knows best would not buy much support from the commoners. Had the central government been really conscious of their responsibilities, 16th August wouldn’t have become a historic day in the annals of modern India.
Many are of the opinion that corruption will not end even if the Jan Lokpal Bill is put into force. But Anna’s version certainly holds a lot of weight for it has been drafted after taking into consideration even intricate consequences and methods to deal with them.
Corruption now is omnipresent.
Anna has no successor to take charge after he retires and no family to leave his wealth to. We, the people of India are his family and we are his successors. And by supporting him, we are securing our future and the fate of the nation.
If we want our children to inherit good values then we must show them corruption free India. Anna is not a film star dressed up in jazzy attire and delivering well scripted dialogue. He isn’t a cricketer to enthral spectators by his batting. He isn’t even a corrupt politician, who buys people to join his rally. He is a dhoti clad Gandhian- a humble social activist whose life is no less than an institution. And we the people of India need to ensure this freedom struggle against corruption goes on until we succeed.
First Published: 8/21/2011 5:01:06 PM