We have been made to believe with a lot of pride, that India and Democracy are synonymous. I would like to make a slight correction. India and ‘a large democracy’ are synonymous and the pride should end just there. There isn’t anything positive with our democracy, even if our politicians and the social commentators would want us to believe otherwise.
We live in a massive democracy which is definitely not a matured one. We can’t dream of the heads of our political parties coming together for a public debate prior to elections on matters that concern the masses. Unthinkable, especially when they haven’t even gone past ‘buying’ the voters with handful of rice, TV-sets and sarees. In our country we can’t even think of a public-wrong-doer (or a scamster) being interrogated by parliamentarians being televised live. This can happen anywhere, but in India. We haven’t even received a single apology for the unending errors that our politicians make – folded hands before the elections do not epitomize humility.
I think as a country we have lots to learn from US & UK, who might be smaller democracies, but are definitely highly matured and much-evolved, besides being quite transparent. Their governments can fall due to ethical issues and people have the humility to apologize and take moral ownership for wrong-doings under their leadership, even if they were not involved. Further, you won’t find them in power after a few years wearing a different cap. In our country they will deny till it is out of people’s mind and another new scam makes the headlines. Our politicians lack the strength of conviction and their moral fabric is already in shreds.
The once-in-five-years ritual called elections is hardly a weapon for change. An average Indian who is working 24x7 to make two ends meet, is so busy fighting the inflation and other issues created by the politicians, that he is unable to keep track of the numerous scandals, scams and other issues of the last half-decade, for him to vote for change and change for the right. To aggravate the situation, his choice is between bad and worse, so what does he choose? The poor common man then simply gives up and elects who he thinks is just bad and needless to mention the elected lives up to his expectation – just bad!
After the elections, the new people in power start their share of looting and ensure that we keep toiling for our daily dry bread (rather half bread!). Life in India just goes on – from the frying pan to the fire and after the elections from the fire to the frying pan!