Our situation is still the same
A little while ago when I wrote these two books, their going out of circulation was my worry. But little did I realize that the politicians will leave no stone turned to maintain the book’s relevance. I am glad that this happened but I didn’t expect the metamorphosis will be so dramatic. The world has become crueler and politicians more crafty and dishonest. Much more reading of these books is therefore now called for. In general, nothing changed for the better.
When Narendra Modi, the current Indian Prime Minister released his election manifesto in 2014, just a couple of months after my second book release I was enamored. His manifesto was probably an elixir extract of these books. I approached the support team of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) to verify if the PM had read my books. But sooner than the later, I found there was much slip between the cup and the lip. The corrupt were never brought to book, the promised money in our banks is still eluding us, the foreign account are still held by those who matter in public life, and the situation on poverty front didn’t change either. Too much of lip service became more active than the cup itself. We are back to square one, perhaps even stepped backward in political morals and ethics.
Should we analyze a little
For a minute let us look at the following events.
First, the politicians didn’t change. They only changed parties. So whatever hope we had for the corrupt to be taken to task, eluded us and took a back seat. The dynasty rule as referred in my book was replaced with dynastic coterie. The same cooperate that we feared became at the helm by dramatically changing allegiance to new incumbents; with a few exceptions, a few added and a few removed from the scene. The masses still suffer while the corporate continue basking in the sun.
Second, corruption was targeted and one fine day demonetization took place. The old black currency was replaced by the new black currency. Many banks and chartered accounts had their day. It continues eluding the masses who were expecting lacs in their bank accounts.
Third the GST – one tax one country – sounds very nice and rhythmic but do you know that there are four GST rates and with further variations. And e-way tax completes the confusion. It means GST is a new christened name for the other taxes. And there are variations in GST rates for states as well. The offices for other taxes are being renamed as GST services. If you see an invoice made in the GST times, you would be more confused than the computer itself, that generated such invoices. The previous government wanted a cap of 18 percent on taxes but the new government settled for up to 25 percent.
Remember we did nothing to the oil prices, one of the major product, in the GST domain. It remains at alarming rate, probably will become double of its price in due course.
Do you see the impact? Yes, the lip service says lacs and crores will be waved off from farmers loans or development of infrastructure will take place. The tax payers’ money will inevitably be diverted to these schemes, but there is no account of how much out of it will be utilized and how much of it will be pilfered. The rich have siphoned of millions of loans and we struggle to recover just a few lacs from the farmer. A very clever trick of crafty politicians. Why did the state governments agree to the raise? Why not, after all who is afraid of the wolf? Money will now trickle down officially to the state governments for their embezzlement.
The cup is now bigger since it must take care of the pockets where this additional money will be siphoned off. Is there a method for public to monitor how many farmers were benefited by the loan waver, or how much money was assigned to the PPP (Public Private Partnership) model of project management, that includes infrastructure projects?
The same very names MNREGA, PM’s Aawas Yojna and Sarak projects continue to be managed inefficiently as in the past. GST, AADHAAR card, FDI (Foreign Direct Investment), the causes of bickering of the current government in power when they were in opposition, have now become their preferred methods for increasing the inclusiveness both of collecting taxes and of siphoning them thereof. Now the pilferage is more systematic and included the states as well. Enormous and useless expense on tax payers’ money. Couldn’t some benefits be targeted to middle class and not just the OBC (Other Backward Classes) or BPL (Below Poverty Line) population.
Linking of cards
Linking of Aadhaar card with PAN card is thrust on public. The supreme court gives a ruling that all citizens, resident or non-resident – or illegal, will have to link PAN with Aadhaar to carry out transactions in the bank from 1 Jan 2018. Are we back to primitives, I mean the stone age. Some senior advocates are calling India, as a “Concentration Camp” and they are being heard in the Supreme Court.
Why? If this link is so sacrosanct and the Supreme Court considers it so, why not link the Aadhaar with Voter card. You know what, I consider this enables the politicians to get the benefit during voting by making use of the Duplicate or redundant voters, the Dead, the Kashmiris, Naxalites Bangladeshis and now Banglastan residents. How many will be excluded from the list and how many fakes will join. And then the global argument of secrecy during voting process an always be quoted.
More and much more
Yet, I have to add, things are not going in the right direction. While we all appreciate the Swatch Bharat campaign none likes to see the propaganda as aspirant leaders sweep dirty locations. Are we Indians going to have two faces forever, is the question that comes to my mind. Are we going to witness similar superficial displays for the other campaigns like bank accounts for the villages (with probably nil balances) or housing for Weaker Sections (including those who can manage the documents)?
We are still waiting for the promised USD @ Rs 40, Gas @ Rs 250, rid of criminals from BJP, capturing and punishing the DONs, confining the so-called but not proven guilty Lalu Ji, Vadhra JI, Lalit Modi, Vijay Mallaya among many others?
Till eternity, I guess hundreds of thousands of badly constructed and highly priced flats are awaiting purchase, and we cry for lack of housing!
The fluid international borders – About the Chinese and Pakistan border issues, that are in a fluid stage and all the time, the less said the better. While the previous secular government was tainted with Muslim appeasement the new Hindu government seems to include the Chinese in this category.
Our never-ending questions
Do you trust what is reported on the media, and if so, which channel? Are they extracting a subset of information to make us see only what the government wants us to see? The questions that you and I should be asking are, whether the government plans to support the cleanliness campaign by building the infrastructure for garbage collection and disposal, or if the government will tackle the real estate mafia by suitably amending the law. We need to ask them, if the return of black money is held up for the removal of criminals and suspects from the parliament or ministries?
The greatest wonder knocks at our doors. Is the PM with his coterie the same as was the previous government with its dynasty orientation? How will the PM cleanse his surroundings and still remain in power? He is also threatened by the collusion of Maha-Gadhbandan of many political parties and their political rumblings.
Yes, he can if we all support him …