Thursday, April 02, 2009

Utter darkness

I was gone for a week. One week with no access to any English newspapers, the Internet, television, the radio, or any inkling of what was happening in India. Sure, I spoke to the parents everyday, but the sharing of news there was limited to the family and events around home. 

Only on the last day was I told about the attack in Lahore on the police academy there. And on asking about what's happening here at home, I was told Varun Gandhi continues to hog the limelight. C'est tout.

The day after I got back, I read about the supposedly estimable L K Advani saying that Varun Gandhi reminds him of Vajpayee and and other leaders of yore. Pretty much confirming what any sane person has suspected all along - Varun Gandhi said those things mainly because he knows, and the BJP knows, that if he passes communal statements, gets the media's attention (and therefore the public's), he can win by a very comfortable margin. Divisive politics works in this country every bloody time.

And then there's the wonderful Sanjay Dutt. Who comes across as a bigger ass every time he opens his mouth. First it was the utterly annoying statement when he said "Women should not stick to their father's surname after marriage after marriage just for the sake of fashion. It will be a disrespect for their husbands if they do so." as well something about sisters never getting along with their brother's wife. (Do read that entire interview by the way - I would find it screamingly hilarious if I didn't want to hang upside down by his toes.) Then comes the supremely chauvinistic statement about his wife's decision making being limited to what gets cooked for dinner. And now I hear he's accusing the Congress of pretty much killing his father. I don't how much truth lies in the sob story he's spouting, and frankly I don't care. All I know is the guy's a bloody jackass. And I'm rather glad he can't contest elections.

The latest news is about Jagdish Tytler getting a clean chit from the CBI. Where the Sikh riots of 84 are concerned, I have only hearsay to go by. But from all accounts, they were no less the Gujarat carnage of 2002. And if this man had anything to do with them, then he's no less than Narendra Modi, and deserves to be punished for his crimes. And if the Congress is shielding him, then my last hope is really gone.

Because the way I see it, I don't think the Congress has done too great a job in the past five years. But tell me, what other option do we have? The BJP? Whose coming to power means every bit of Hindu fanaticism from the Rediff message boards coming into play in the streets of India? Or Mayawati, who will take every paisa left in the Stock Exchange (oh, I hear it crosses 10K after the G20 talks! Will it last?) ad use it as a mattress. Or our lady Mamata Banerjee, who refused to let Ratan Tata do to Singur what his family did to Jamshedpur, but promises to turn Kolkata into the new London?

I was in Ahmedabad a couple of weeks back, and yes, I was impressed with the roads and the infrastructure. So sure, I can see why people rave about what a brilliant administrator Narendra Modi is. And I can get why they say he's good for Gujarat, and probably good for India. From a development perspective.

But here's my thing: where do we draw the line between good for us in terms of what we get, and good, period? Between right, and convenient? Because he could maybe bring about change in terms of roads, and infrastructure, and lighting, and housing, and all of that, do we forget that even if he didn't encourage the 2002 massacres, as Tehelka would have us believe, he definitely stood by and watched it all happen?

Till today afternoon, to my mind, the Congress was the best of the worst. Our only hope amidst all the inept, self-serving goons who call themselves our politicians. But if they're shielding Tytler for the same things Sonia Gandhi called Modi a maut ka saudagar for, where do we turn?

Sorry for rambling so much. It's 1.30 AM. And I'm tired. I'm tired of wondering where my country is headed. I'm tired of seeing the news channels go mad about one brief conversation between Manmohan Singh and Barack Obama, like a little boy who's exhilarated at getting a smile from his favourite teacher. I'm tired of seeing the same politicians say the same things and proving yet again that we don't deserve such leaders.

I want one leader. Who actually means what he/she says. Who really does want to do some good, and is willing to do it, and is capable of doing it. I want one single, solitary ray of hope.


The Seeker said...

I very very highly doubt that any one of us will really live to see that.
And that guy does sound like a jackass.

ZiggyStrauss said...

I had no idea Sanjay Dutt was that... non smart.

Hey you know I've never voted? And I don't know if I ever will? Last elections were when I was 17 and the now I'm not THERE only. I know zero about politics so its just as well.

Runjoo said...

there are big chors and small chors but in the end "all politicians are chors"- that is something i believe in wholeheartedly.

and sanjay dutt is a big jerk...if 'he' wins, the country really would be insane.

not that it already isnt.
i wish there were more men like kalam in the govt..what a brilliant and amazing man.

Harish Krishnan said...

Reading this post after the elections results are out made me look it in a completely different way. Now the same people who were praising Varun Gandhi for the statements are saying otherwise. This is Indian Politics my friend :)