Sunday, 4 August 2013

INTERESTING READ...Being forwarded as received......................84713

INTERESTING READ...Being forwarded as received. There is a lot of sense in all three articles in the attachment..

Rama Jois is a former Chief Justice of High Court and Mr. Buch is a former IAS officer.

I am forwarding three articles published in news papers you may like to read in case you have not already read them. I liked the themes. Two about secularism as being propounded by Digvijay Singh, and Congress party as a whole besides Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Yadav, Mayawati and Nitish Kumar and Mamata Banerjee. Two Yadavs and Mayawati are the worst communalists.The third on corruption. I have read some news item that CBI is going to give a clean chit to Mulayam Singh Yadav in the DA case. What corruption can we fight when every thing is fixed? Charges against the UP duo are taken up or dropped depending on the need of the hour!
Rama Jois is a former Chief Justice of High Court and Mr. Buch is a former IAS officer.

Secular nationalism prevails over communal secularism

By Rama Jois
It is amazing that political parties, who in their word and deed, be it in election or selection, think of caste and religion—so communal in their outlook—certify themselves as ‘secular’ and brand others, particularly the BJP, as communal. The reason is that such divisive politics gives them electoral dividends. In this distorted state of discourse, I place before the nation certain constitutional principles of what secularism means.
Without doubt, secularism and equality are the two pillars of our Constitution, incorporated in Articles 14, 15 and 44. Art. 14 declares that the state shall give equal protection of law to all persons. The general mandate of Art. 14 is made more specific by Art. 15 which reads “(l) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.” Art. 44 directs the state to enact Uniform Civil Code (UCC) to constitute the foundation of secularism. Mahatma Gandhi, in his book My Picture of Free India, wrote that in an India well governed by the Constitution, there is no scope for classifying citizens as minority as all of us are the children of the same Mother India.
This view is manifest in Art. 44.

The Supreme Court, sitting as a Constitutional bench in the Shah Bano case, declared that so long as Art. 44 is not implemented, the Constitution would remain a dead letter. It said so because the Muslim Personal Law flagrantly discriminates against women on the basis of sex because it enables a Muslim male to marry four wives and divorce at will. Yet, those who oppose enacting UCC brand themselves as secular and those who cite the constitutional mandate as communal. Despite the mandate of Art. 15, those who enact laws for separate universities for Muslims claim to be secular and those who oppose it are branded as communal. The Congress, in its manifesto, promises a separate budget for Muslims in matters relating to education, scholarships and banking—in direct contempt of Articles 14 and 15. A party like BJP that cites constitutional provisions for equality is dubbed communal. A Congressman, who on the day he was sworn in as Union minister for minorities, declared that there would be five universities for Muslims, is celebrated as secular. Being constitutionally impermissible, this idea was rejected by the Thorat Committee.
Secularism in Bharat, in the sense of equal treatment for all, was part of Rajadharma, our ancient constitutional law. Just two verses would establish this. “Just as the mother earth gives equal support to all living beings, a king (State) should give support to all without any discrimination.” (Manu Smriti X–311). “The king (State) should afford protection to compacts of associations of believers of Veda (Naigamas) as also of disbelievers in Veda (Pashandis) and of others in the same manner in which he is under an obligation to protect his fort and territory.” (Narada Smriti vide Dharmakosha P-870). In this land, where the Vedas were ever regarded as supreme, the ancient constitution mandated kings to respect and protect disbelievers in the Vedas. But, now, those who stand by the idea of dharma are berated as communal. Agonised at the BJP being branded anti-secular, Bharat Ratna C Subramanyam, a Congressman, condemned it as practising political untouchability and fundamentalism. (C.S. Speaks P. 334-335).
Just as Rule of Law and arbitrariness are regarded sworn enemies, Rajadharma and theocracy were sworn enemies. Just as darkness can’t exist where light exists, fundamentalism can’t exist where dharma exists. That is why our Constitution confers the fundamental right to practice any religion under Article 25. In essence, dharma is the soul of Indian nationalism. Vote-bank politics is communal secularism. Secular nationalism should prevail over it.
Tentacles of corruption-

By M N Buch
Some time back, Rahul Gandhi visited Bhopal for a day on purely party work for the Congress. He did not take a commercial flight, the fare of which he could have reimbursed as a Member of Parliament. He came by a special aircraft and for his personal protection a bulletproof armoured vehicle had been sent in advance from Delhi by train. Naturally, he was accompanied by his Special Protection Group escort and more than one thousand policemen were deployed for his protection and general bandobast. He travelled in a convoy of several cars, piloted and escorted by the police and barricades were erected for crowd control.
I cannot think of the chairman of the Labour Party in Britain travelling in that country in such style and at such great expense. In Delhi, the Sonia Gandhi family maintains a lifestyle which undoubtedly must cost a great deal of money, certainly more than can be afforded by the emoluments earned by her and Rahul Gandhi as Members of Parliament. The question which the people of India must ask is, “Where is all this money coming from?”
I am not targeting Rahul Gandhi or the Congress because every party and every leader does exactly the same thing. The BJP president, Rajnath Singh, travels by special aircraft and helicopters, as do Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav and leaders of the parties in the southern states. The Congress is supposed to be the richest political party in India, followed by the BJP and CPI(M). Suppose we take the population of India as 120 crore, including adults and minors, if a party were to collect five rupees per head that would still come to only ` 600 crore.
Considering the lifestyle of our leaders, the cost of their travel, the huge amounts spent during elections, it is obvious that parties and party leaders are accepting money from business houses, whereas their followers are extorting money from smaller businessmen. Why should a business house give any money to any politician unless he is convinced that this is a form of investment which can be encashed at huge profit, to the advantage of the politicians and also for overlooking malpractices of the business houses?
One is told that the House of Tata refuses to pay bribes and I am prepared to accept that the family of Jamnalal Bajaj, mainly Rahul Bajaj, would also be principled in this behalf. But that is not true of most of our business houses and, therefore, party funds are very largely dependent on contributions from black marketeers, people indulging in illegal business and business houses, some on the make but most of whom know that if they are to survive they have to please the politicians. This is the root cause of corruption and surely the question must be asked, “Why are parties and politicians sourcing funds from businessmen and why are businessmen doling out such huge amounts?”
In my family, we three brothers were in the IAS (the second one died when he was just 52) and my wife was also an IAS officer. She, my youngest brother and I are pensioners and no doubt after the Sixth Pay Commission the pension is enough for us to live reasonably comfortably. It is not enough to afford luxury, which is why my wife is unable to replace her eleven-year-old car. In some ways we are fortunate because there is a huge escalation in land value and the house which I built in 1975-76 cost me just about ` 3 lakh, including the cost of land, which is now worth crores of rupees.However, I cannot think of acquiring more property at today’s prices. On the other hand, most of our politicians have acquired assets for which there is no logical explanation in terms of what they earn.
For example, a chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh once told me that his industries and excise minister, who belonged to a particular tribe, came from a poverty-stricken household but he now owns a hotel in Itanagar, properties in Guwahati, Delhi and Bombay and is an extremely wealthy man. I can give any number of examples from Madhya Pradesh of politicians who could not afford a bicycle now owning several cars; others who could not afford a one-room tenement now having luxurious bungalows and commercial properties, with their wives being loaded with jewels.

Where does all these money come from? Elections cost huge sums of money and it is obvious that political parties cannot afford to give every candidate crores of rupees for an Assembly or parliamentary election. A person who has spent ` 5 crore to 10 crore to win a parliamentary seat obviously has to collect money by illegal means to recoup what he has spent. He becomes corrupt, he corrupts the system by forcing his civil servants to assist in collecting money, the civil servants in turn find that it is lucrative to be corrupt on their own, unscrupulous contractors and businessmen take advantage of the corruption of the bureaucrats and the politicians and, therefore, spurious drugs and liquor are sold and innocent people killed, the roof of a hospital collapses with patients occupying the premises, a Dawood Ibrahim flourishes and scams occur on a national scale.

How do we deal with corruption? Without being judgemental let me just quote a few cases. Both Mayawati and Mulayam Singh Yadav are accused of having assets disproportionate to their known sources of income. Whichever party is in power in a coalition it needs their support and, therefore, the cases drag on for years. If they are innocent the matter should have been closed long ago; if they are guilty they should have been punished long ago. Neither happens, the sword of Damocles hangs over these politicians and they vote in a convenient manner so that they can stay out of jail. Whether it is DMK, AIADMK, the Congress, the BJP, Janata Dal, the Reddy brothers in Bellary or Y S Reddy of Andhra Pradesh, corrupt conduct is the handle with which government beats them to extort money, but nothing happens in terms of legal retribution. The final question which people must ask is, “When will the law prevail, the guilty be brought to book and corruption ruthlessly eradicated?”

The Pernicious Secularism Agenda

Vinod Saighal
A majority of Indians, regardless of their denominational leanings, would agree that what happened in Gujarat post-Godhra was a blot on the state, whichever way one looks at it. In spite of several commissions of inquiry and investigations, the link to the Gujarat Chief Minister was never established.
Whether he should get the benefit of the doubt or whether he could have acted more aggressively to stop the carnage will remain an unanswered question and should continue to weigh on his conscience; having said that, there have been bigger carnages in the past. For example, the killing of Sikhs in Delhi and elsewhere in much larger numbers after the assassination of Indira Gandhi was an unsurpassed abomination that happened at the national level. What is more, without doubt it was directly initiated and orchestrated by Congress leaders. Central government agencies in the capital could easily have stamped it out within the first few hours, had anyone in authority given the call to do so. This did not happen. Since the young Prime Minister himself seemed to have blessed it with his infamous statement, nobody in authority lifted a finger to call a halt to the madness. Many senior Congress leaders of the time were personally accused of fuelling the frenzy of killing that lasted over several days.
The point being highlighted here is different. Not one Congress leader starting from the PM was ever accused of being 'non-secular' at that time or to this day. Yet, from the moment news of the killing in Gujarat became known, practically everyone in the Congress and the media aligned to the party accused Narendra Modi of being non-secular. What is forgotten is that many BJP leaders including A B Vajpayee were dumb struck at what had taken place, as were the large majority of Hindus. If any proof were required as to which set of people are truly secular, in the Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections held shortly after the Gujarat carnage, people rejected the BJP and voted the Congress to power - this in a state where the overwhelming majority of the population professes the Hindu faith.
It is indeed sad that since the UPA came to power a decade ago, the country has been increasingly polarised into the secular - non-secular divide. As the country moves towards the next general election, this pernicious secularism agenda will remain the order of the day. It is being pushed on to the public consciousness almost on a daily basis at the behest of the UPA apex
Evidently, among other reasons that need not be outlined here, the electoral reason to do so becomes compelling for the dynasty that is on the back foot on practically every aspect relating to the country's governance: decision-making paralysis, breakdown of law and order, security and well-being of the people.
Corruption directly under the patronage of the highest in the land has assumed proportions that have hollowed out India and nearly turned it into a basket case; since this can simply not be explained away by any false propaganda, the tried and tested secular agenda will be kept in the forefront till the next general election and beyond.
And should the dynasty be worsted, as increasingly looks to be the case, explanations for the rout will again be laid at the door of this pernicious theme. Therefore, as political compulsion, nay political survival, the polarisation will be deepened and perpetuated.
It is high time the people of India saw through the pernicious game that primarily suits the dynasty and its closest advisers. The very brazenness of putting this agenda on the mast, practically at par with the national flag, should have been nailed by most thinking Indians by now.
How on earth could anybody, other than a foreigner, have dared to attempt to divide India along these lines when the only religious tradition in the world that from time immemorial has extolled syncretism took birth in India's sacred soil? Is there any Indian who has not heard of Vasudaiva Kutambakam. This is perhaps the only ideology and philosophy that since millennia has embraced pluralism to its bosom. Every religion has been welcomed with open arms in the country and flourished here.
The two major religious denominations that conquered the world in the preceding millennia, on the other hand, butchered their way to expansion and world dominance and in several cases and never professed syncretism of the type imbibed in the all the Vedic dispensations that took birth on the soil of India.
The quality of secularism being practiced by current rulers in Delhi was highlighted by the recent bomb blasts in Bodh Gaya. Along with relatively tepid condemnation, a case was being made to suggest the blasts were the direct result of the killing of Rohingyas in Myanmar. How does that justify the attempted destruction in India of Budhhism's most sacred place? Has the same analogy been applied by these apologists to similar crimes elsewhere?
It may come as a surprise to these leading votaries of secularism on Indian soil that to date - at least in the UPA-led decade - only Hindus have been branded as being non-secular. No non-Hindu leader, even when preaching hatred from the most renowned pulpits in the land, has been branded as being non-secular. The irony is evidently lost on leaders who persist in persevering with the divide.
The greatest curse that the ruling dispensation could have visited upon the country in which it has prospered beyond its wildest expectation is to divide it along secular and non-secular lines. Possibly as a parting kick, because after this obnoxious exercise the chances of this dispensation ever again wielding such enormous power have faded, even become non-existent, irrespective of whether the non-secular Narendra Modi makes it to Delhi or not.

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