Friday, February 10, 2012

A MOCKERY OF DEMOCRACY

Imagine this scene-  a woman member of a parliament  with her baby tied to a sling around her neck sits through a crucial session  listening to the deliberations and voting on the issues that she believes in, all the while cradling the seven week old baby. Nothing new for most women-it is called multitasking! This was Licia Ranzolli a MEP from Italy who took her baby for a session at Strasbourg. The 35-year-old  was taking advantage of relatively relaxed rules that allow women to take their baby to work with them. Now think of another kind of  “multitasking” that was happening in the Karnataka Assembly this week- three ministers watching porn while the house was discussing issues around drought in northern Karnataka.!

Before I proceed further, I would like to  make this clear- I am not about to make any value judgments about people who watch porn or porn itself !  It is their choice and if they want to watch  it let them do it BUT on their time.  Unfortunately, these fellows not only did it at the time of the Indian people but also right within the building where the business of democracy gets transacted! If it is not outrageous then what is I keep asking myself. Probably the fact that they feel that they have not done anything wrong!

Today I had the opportunity to watch the speaker of the Jharkhand Assembly say on a television channel that had this happened in his house, he would have reprimanded them and let them off with a warning! Wanting  them to resign or be expelled according to him was asking for too much ! My mind goes back to the civics lesson in my daughter’s text book where the duties of the speaker are listed – the most important one among them is about his responsibility of  taking  action against members indulging in “wrongful conduct” Watching porn in the assembly obviously is not a serious matter in Jharkhand or for that matter even in Karnatka!

I was discussing this with a friend  and his take on this was – “This is  just one example of bad behaviour. Our elected representatives have beaten each other up and climbed up on benches wielding microphones and flower pots as weapons in Tamilnadu and Bihar so why are you so surprised”! While I am inclined to agree with him, I still think watching porn inside the assembly while it is in session is probably the heights of disrespect to the institution of democracy! Beating each other up , though equally disgusting serves to disrupt the proceedings and one has to physically put an end to the deliberations. What was happening here was something  more passive but dangerous! It speaks of a decay in the entire institution of democracy!

And imagine the cheek of these fellows- they had the temerity to say that they were watching a woman being raped by some men at a rave party and they wanted to know more about it so they could put an end to it in their state!!! I would,  in turn like to ask them if they were so keen to know about the impact of rape on women they should have asked for a special talk by some feminist group or psychologists!

And all the while, I was wondering where Mr. Pramod Muthalik was?  Probably getting ready to bash up the owners of shops that sell Valentine day cards ( after all it is only next week)! It tells you clearly about a very sick society where women are treated with scant respect while men can get away with anything! Morality as they describe it is only for the women- it is like a rule that I hear now is being imposed in Saudi Arabia that women with “tempting eyes” would be prosecuted if they do not cover them up!!

Anyway, coming back to our friends in Karnataka, is it  surprising that they are not being expelled?  The BJP with its “high moral position” on all matters relating to conduct and culture obviously does not think watching porn  inside the assembly is a serious issue. The way their statements are changing by the hour regarding this incident is shocking!   Nirmala Sitaraman, the BJP spokesperson, an otherwise articulate woman was  initially finding  it difficult to defend these guys on a TV news channel! So today they had the Jharkhand speaker give out different views! I haven’t  been watching much TV( as my daughter is having her mid term tests ) this week, but I am extremely curious to know what Sushma Swaraj’s views on this were? She probably feels that since the porn clips involved foreign women and not the “bharatiya nari”there nothing for her to shout around about !

 Of course, it is not to say that the Congress and the rest are pristine pure. They have indulged in other kinds of crime but probably not inside the assembly or probably have been clever enough not to get caught!

I shudder to think what the founders of Indian democracy would have felt about this! They probably had no rules for this kind of misdemeanor because technology had not progressed enough those days where such activities could be indulged in right inside the assembly/ parliament!

I wonder what kind of example this sets for the youngsters? Next time a school boy is caught with porn inside the classroom he can definitely get away with it. But then, as my father says” These elected representatives can never be a role model for any youngster in this country. When your qualification for standing for election involves the extent of your clout in the neighborhood which simply means your ability to intimidate the people there then how can you hope to be a role model?”

As a citizen of this country, I can only hang my head in shame! The candidates that I have to choose from are likely to range from hooligans, criminals, petty thieves, gangsters, rapists or murders depending on what is the office that they would be contesting for..!!

If this is what democracy is about then I am all for a dictatorship!



(PS: What do you think of this new template? After one year I felt that there was some need for a change)



16 comments:

Rhapsody B. said...

Namaste.....
As long as it all is steer by human beings then it will always be "agenda" soiled.

Gayu said...

"I wonder what kind of example this sets for the youngsters? Next time a school boy is caught with porn inside the classroom he can definitely get away with it." I totally agree with this.

I would like to share an incident with you which happened last week. I was travelling in the first class ladies compartment. There were some school children also in the compartment. The boys were hanging on the footboard, climbing on the seats...shouting on top of their voice, and giving swear words. The other lady in the compartment was irritated by their behaviour. She scolded the boys and asked them sit in one place. They ignored her.She warned them...but they shouted at her...and tried to misbehave with her, they pulled her dupatta and...(I guess u understood).

I got up and gave them a tight slap. I handed over them to the station police. They were school going boys, studying in 9th std.

This is the plight of Indian women...there is no safety...we are surrounded by men, boys who just want to satisfy there urges at the cost of others life.

A country like India, where you worship "KALI", "SARASWATI" and "LAKSHMI"....this is how the women in the house are treated.

I liked the new template...and ur picture also.

Gayu

anilkurup said...

First, well about your template. It is , better than the dark background you had before.

Indian culture, my foot.

Hypocrisy, innuendo, intolerance, skulduggery,the nouns that can be used to represent us and what we call our culture are many of the kind. Let us not talk about the heritage and culture that we claim was passed down generations. What we are matters than what our fore fathers were.

In that context we are what I described. We are no different from a bigoted regime and society like the Saudi and getting as outlandish as they are. What holds back the deluge is a comparatively free press and certain institutions of democracy that still fights against calculated assault on democracy.
Watching porn is a personal matter. But watching it as these elected scoundrels did is worse than Nero fiddling when Rome was burning.

In India there is no respect for women or for personal freedom. Each ones life is to oneself and no one can usurp the right to tell me or any one that I have to live the way others want. My body is mine and that cannot be bartered with. As longs as I respect the democratic laws of the land , I have the freedom and the right to my life. And watching porn in the legislature does not include in my inviolable right.

Physically molesting and violently abusing a girl child of two years - is that sanctioned by the culture and heritage , people like Sushma Swaraj, Muthalik and the fanatic Mullahas see,m top be raving about?

Meera Sundararajan said...

Anil, very well said "Nero fiddling while Rome was burning!" Point is people seem to confuse what is their right and what are their responsibilities!

@ Gayu, it is shocking! what you are telling me about the class IX boys!! And in a country where a goddesses are worshiped it is a real shame!

Jack said...

Meera,

I would term their act as RAPE of not only democracy but sanctity of the assembly. And one of them was looking after Women & Child Welfare ministry. Such persons would not hesitate to molest a woman even in a religious place.

Take care

Christopher said...

Just when you think our politicians have reached the worst in behaviour, they prove you wrong by doing something more shocking/disgusting. I am sure these three ministers will get elected again and that is the true tragedy.

Cloud Nine said...

Love the new template. Subtle, yet strong:) Continue with this. Coming to the post, again a point well- made! Love the Amul ad;) Wondering what Sushma Swaraj says about the three Xeteers!

Meera Sundararajan said...

@ Christopher you are right our elected reps can stretch the limit of what is outrageous to something unimaginable! As you say what they do or don't do does not matter to the electorate. @ Cloud nine thanks for the feedback on the template. I love your new terminology "Xeteers" LOL!

anindita said...

I agree Meera and to think that they are preaching on 'Good Governance'!!!!!!

Meera, the new look on the page is supppaar

~iyshu~ said...

Its excellently etched.. And the layout of the page is very nice.. :) I chose the same for mine too..

Rachna said...

The template is good but the comments section is confusing with everything being of the same color. Yes, that entire episode was sickening. And they were made to resign because of the uproar from the public not from their own party. Morals are sinking lower and lower in public life. But, I do not agree that dictatorship is the answer. Democracy is also about a lot of other freedoms that we enjoy. And, you must be aware that if none of the candidates appeal to you, then do fill a form using your Right to Reject! Let's work on the wrongs of our democracy instead of thinking that it is all bad. For once, you might not enjoy the freedom of writing about your elected representatives in this way if you were in China!

Rahul Bhatia said...

Meera, I totally agree and find the conduct absolutely shameful for the guardians of public morality! On the other hand the picture of Licia with a toddler in arms is such a contrast! We have a very long way to go:(

Haddock said...

A mockery it is..... especially in India.
I think its all because we (Indians) take it lying down with the "chalta hai" attitude !!

Rhapsody B. said...

Namaste....
I hope you and your family are all in the best of health. Just stopped by to wish you a splendid weekend and a fabulous week....

DEMOCRACY IS MOCKERY plain and simple it is a way for the haves to get what they want, how they want, when they want, in their speicific time, in their specific way and to maintain it all under the guise of DEMOCRACY.

STAY BLESSED
http://rappingonamelody.blogspot.com/p/savings.html
http://www.shelfari.com/rhapsodyphoenix
http://twitter.com/rhapsodyphoenix

KParthasarathi said...

Elegant template and looks different.
Your anguish and rage is understandable.The three who saw porn are representatives of the same society we live in.There is a fast decline in values and anything passes muster in the worship of Mammon and search for power.
I am not quite sanguine about things getting better.I am worried about further decline in values. The canker has spread too deep and extensively.
Sorry for the delay in commenting

sunil deepak said...

Really enjoyed it. I have to write about Bollywood mothers before the Nirupa Roy era!

It is a fascinating area this discussion about changing mothers of Bollywood!

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