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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

keep the embers glowing

Autocracy is supposed to mean the rule of a single person, something like a King or a Dictator. Once we talk of democracy, we mean rule by a group of like minded persons who have the well being of their people at heart. At least that is what I, in my simple mind, presume. Democracy must also have people who will rise up to oppose the misdeeds of the rulers – not make a mockery of the system but carry out honest criticism of policies formulated by the rulers. The opposition must always have a constructive approach. But, with every passing day, we keep losing sight of our goals. That is why, when a Minister decides to suspend further work on a project that has progressed for quite sometime and where a large amount of the taxpayers money has been invested, it does not augur well for the decision makers. It is akin to sowing the seeds of discontent among the affected persons and indirectly eggs them on to foment trouble. In other words, it amounts to indirect incitement. That is what is likely to happen if the Ammunition factory proposed to be set up in Nalanda, Bihar is really shelved. From reports available, one third of the sanctioned amount has already been spent and civil works have been nearly completed. Abandoning the project at this belated stage without sufficient reason is calling for trouble.

This is similar to the unrest in Kalinganagar, Orissa for the construction of the compound wall of a steel plant in which several locals had to pay with their lives.

All incidents like these are indicative of the lack of co-ordination of different agencies involved. The philosophy of the right hand not knowing what the left hand gives has become outdated. Today, both the hands should know what each has one has, how much weight each can carry and the extent to which each can stretch himself. The practice of keeping the embers glowing needs to be discarded for a more positive approach that will help deliver the best. We must demand nothing but the best from the rulers.


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