India is Going Bonkers. Period.
The events of the last one week or so have left me completely disillusioned. Every single day I hear some news which confirms one fact - there is no dearth of people waiting to be climb the pedestal of stupidity.
Let me start with our Honorable Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee. The railway budget was presented on 14th March by the then Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi. A bold man (or so he said) that he was raised the railway fares for the first time in 9 years.
His actions were appreciated both by the PM and FM. They lauded his "progressive budget".
However, his boss - Mamata Banerjee of Trinamool Congress - saw red, and had the Railway Minister sacked in the next 10 days. Her appointee cancelled the fare hikes across majority of the travel classes.
And what did our PM and FM do? They kept mum. It is an absolute shame to see the minister presenting the budget not being responsible in the Parliament to answer questions on the budget. It's an absolute disgrace for the Government of India.
As for Mamata Banerjee, she should be crowned as the alter ego of the communists.
And just a few days back, the GoI announced India had 5 crore less poor people.
As per them, if you earn Rs. 28 per day, you are not poor. It means that if two people work in a family of 4, then Rs. 56 is sufficient to get you out of the poverty bracket.
Rs. 56 for 4 people certainly means that the person is living in difficult conditions. Our Government thinks otherwise.
All through our lives, we are taught to aim for the skies. However, our Government and its educated policy makers are setting an abysmal targets to show themselves in better light.
Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission had the guts to say "Whatever way you measure, poverty has come down."
Mr. Ahluwalia :- "Whom are you comforting with such rosy words? If the poverty would have increased, you would be out of your job. And aren't you ashamed to say that in a nation of 125 crore people, with all the machinery and money at your disposal, all you can do is get 5 crore people out of poverty? And that too with a scale which appears to have been set in Athenian times?"
A couple of days later, another scam came to light. We, Indians, lost a whopping 10.67 lakh crores ( 10670000000000.00 INR or 209 Billion USD) thanks to the GoI (again) not auctioning coal blocks. "Coalgate" was born.
Now, I am completely flummoxed by these numbers. Is the coal really worth so much that we could have got 209 Billion USD? And if yes, why on this very earth didn't we try to earn this money, which could have solved a multitude of other problems?
Or is the CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) exaggerating the figures? 10.67 lakh crores is too huge an amount to be true.
Consider this calculation.
- India's population is 125 crores
- Number of poor people - 30% = 375000000 = 37.50 crores.
- Distribute 10.67 lakhs crore rupees among the 37.50 crore people. Each of them would get Rs. 28453. For a family of 4, it would mean Rs. 113812.
Wouldn't this be a very substantial security for someone who earns just Rs. 28 a day?
Only God knows the truth in this case. The stand of the GoI is standard, as it was in other scams. They comfort us by saying India hasn't lost so much of a money.
If anyone can play agony aunt, its the Government of India.
And if such puzzling news was not sufficient, the Indian judiciary too decided to join the circus. In a verdict given in Delhi, non consummation of a marriage on the wedding night was cited as a reason for a divorce.
Now this is completely mind boggling. Will the courts decide what people do before or after marriage? For something which is a very personal and mutual choice?
Maybe you can't blame the courts and the judges. When everyone around is playing a joker, everyone else would also love to join the party.
And today, our distinguished Army Chief let the cat out of the bag by telling the world that he was offered a bribe of 14 crore rupees for purchasing sub standard vehicles.
|I was attempted to be Bribed - Army Chief|
For most practical purposes, this incident would have happened more than 6 months earlier (after all, the Chief was busy fighting with the Government over his age for the last 6 months or so). And our honorable Defence Minister sat on this matter for a long long time, without initiating any action.
And today, when the matter became public knowledge, the minister ordered an inquiry. Once again, this is a very shameful response. It seems that the Government of India needs to be rapped on the knuckles to get into any action.
Or they love Status Quo.
Or to say it in a very sarcastic way, I would quote my friend.
It doesn't mean we aim for the sky.
It means that we don't start working unless our tail is on fire.
Be it Lokpal, Coalgate, the Army Chief Bribe, each of the instances would reflect such my-tail-is-on-fire action.
All in all, the events of the recent past have made me realize that remaining sane in such insane times would be extremely difficult. Possibly one principle would work - Blinkers On.
P.S. I need some Ice Gate keep myself cool. Is Ice Gate in the offing?
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