AAP`s rise has challenged established institutions: Amartya Sen

Last Updated: Saturday, December 14, 2013 - 17:33

New Delhi: Aam Admi Party`s rise is an "important departure" in politics which has challenged the established institutions, eminent economist Amartya Sen said on Saturday. The Nobel laureate also said that Anna Hazare`s decision to stay away from the "crusade" was not wise.

"Anna Hazare did not join the crusade which I think was not a very wise thing to do in the sense that you stand outside the legal system," Sen said during a debate on a news channel. Sen noted that AAP had raised basic issues to mobilise people.

He also criticised Supreme Court`s verdict restoring the ban on gay sex in India and said that criminalisation of homosexuality is a violation of the protection of minority rights.

"India while its is a democracy, some people are privileged and some people are not... When it comes to the rights of minorities, whether it is religious minority or in terms of lifestyle like gay for example, criminalisation of that would be a violation of protection rights of minorities," Sen said.

Infosys mentor NR Narayana Murthy also praised Kejriwal and his party and said what he has brought to the table is that if one has a few powerful messages, he can win elections with very little money.

"What Kejriwal has brought to the table is that if one has a few powerful messages, you can win elections with very little money. You can get a party ready fairly quickly to have a stunning debut. He has also given hope and confidence to a lot of people across various cities of the country to say we too can participate in the political process."

Former Union minister Arun Shourie described AAP`s rise as a "stunning announcement" for political parties that the people are fed up.

"It is a stunning announcement for political parties that the people are fed up... Everybody will be forced to field better candidates. But his economic policies are so regressive that it will certainly damage economic growth in many ways and that will lead to social tensions," he said.

Sen said that democracy has never been defined as majority rule and it is a governance by discussion after panelist Shourie said that "secularism had been prostituted".

Noted jurist Fali S Nariman, who was also among the panelist, while referring to the recent Supreme Court verdict on homosexuality said that he had always been averse to important matters dealt with a bench of two judges.

"I have always been averse to important matters being dealt by a bench of two judges. It has to be a constitutional bench of five judges," Nariman said.

Meanwhile, Murthy said that development on a platform of secular democracy is a must. Referring to BJP`s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Murthy said,"The courts have not indicted the gentleman. Therefore the best we can do is to expect a sense of contrition from the individual and move on," he said.

He said that secularism was extremely important and government, state and religion should be completely separate.

"Secularism is extremely important and government, state and religion should be completely separate. We have to respect pluralism and every leader should practise it," said Murthy.
Meanwhile, Nariman said that by destroying Babri mosque the message that was sent to the world and India was that this country, which claimed that it is a democracy, does not value democratic ways of life.
"The constitutional bench which heard the case consisted of two members of the minority community and three members of the majority community and the case was decided by the majority in three to two," Nariman said.

PTI

First Published: Saturday, December 14, 2013 - 17:33

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