Arundhati Dhuru’s speech and Lok Rajniti Manch Manifesto

Arundhati Dhuru’s speech and Lok Rajniti Manch Manifesto

Going through Arundhati Dhuru’s election speech and S R Darapuri’s (and Lok Rajniti Manch’s) Election manifesto was no less than pure music to my ears and I could not stop myself from coming out in open admiring and discussing the two.

Arundhati says in her speech- “"Politics after all, is the allocation of resources. Also politics is who gets to decide on how this resource allocation should be done". There could not have been a better statement on the purpose of politics as a process and the need is for each one of us to understand this basic fact.

Allocation of resources has so far been the privilege of those undeserving and self-seeking persons, who feel proud of calling themselves politicians, while mercenary would have been a more appropriate word.

There is an immediate need to change this situation and to get the average person get involved in the process directly and through representatives who are not there to usurp away the lion’s share of the public money for their own wanton needs.

Again her example of Indira Gandhi and the price of potato, though apparently being unconnected, is so apt and true that it makes us understand the reach and width of politics on our day-to-day life.

Politics is the key to a better future and this necessitates people of real worth to come up and join this hitherto unheralded and pooh-poohed arena. At the same time, her insistence on building an ideal political alternative without depoliticising politics is stating a blunt truth in the way it is.

She is absolutely correct when she says- " If we ignore the mainstream political parties in our isolated efforts to build a new ideal political alternative, then this reflects our immature political understanding."

Yes, every one including the Lok Rajniti Manch will have to accept the things as they are. Just turning away the eyes from the reality of the things do not make them disappear. It is like living in a Fool’s paradise. It is the truth that these huge and highly influential political entities are very well around us, having their immense following and committed following. This fact can not be washed away with one simple or single statement. Instead, first one must realize the things as they are and then go all-out to get the things corrected in the way they desire. This could be the only way in which the cleansing and betterment of politics can be achieved.

Her insistence on 100% voting during the elections is laudable for the reasons so well explained by her-it is important that “those without any recognized identity” need to participate in the electoral process and to show their real preference. This only would ensure the drive for clean and fair elections because the mainstream politicians are leaving no stone unturned to keep them away from election process.

Her statement on terrorism, a phenomenon which the mainstream parties understand the least and try to use it to their maximum advantage by trying to ignite the people’s feeling is no less than a pithy- "Security comes from believing in our ownselves, human relationships and from being humane." Indeed, this menace of terrorism will die down only when we stop using it as a God-sent opportunity to pin-down our adversaries and to take it as a plea to enforce all sorts of draconian and inhuman legislatures and executive orders, which go on to deprive even our basic rights of dignity as a human being.

No less important is the Manifesto of S R Darapuri where so many issues, which are invariably and deliberately left by the mainstream parties but which are so intensely and intimately connected with the common masses could be seen for the first time. Take for instance the insistence on local communities having the right to own the natural resources (water, forests, land, minerals etc) instead of giving them away to private corporations. There are hundreds of examples scattered all around us where it can be easily seen how these greedy private parties have badly and mercilessly exploited the local resources, bleeding the region to a dead pan, without sharing an iota of their huge gains with the local population. Would there be anything more shameful? And yet, every political party seems least concerned with this.

Again the demand for no funds to be provided to MPs and MLAs is the one which every political party is bound to feel bad about. The simple reason is that these Funds are directly linked with commission and hence no political party wants this source to die down because they are directly supported through the levy they charge on these commissions. Similarly, land acquisition of huge areas of cultivable land on various pretexts is nothing but a modern way of cheating the farmers and of taking away their prized and often single possession in throw-away prices and to later use them to make money through all sorts of underhand dealings.

Issues like Public transport services being improved in the context of reducing global warming and alternative energy sources being adopted are the ones that are generally overlooked by most of the mainstream parties because they don’t find them catchy enough to secure them votes.

Thus a single glance through the Manifesto is enough to let each one of us realize that it is not a waste paper but has been brought up with in a careful manner with utmost care.

This Manifesto and the Arundhati speech are extremely promising and alluring for us so as to pin down our hopes on this Manch. But this also warrants regular and non-stop commitment on the part of the Manch and its people to the cause that they have chosen. Otherwise they might also get branded as some sort of Fly-by-night operators who prop up only during the Election times.

Dr Nutan Thakur
IRDS, Lucknow

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