AAP, Kejriwal, Democracy etc.

So, will AAP change things? As the cliche goes, nothing changes overnight.

Is there hope? Yes. Arvind Kejriwal and his closest ally currently come across as people with

  • Genuinely good intentions (rajniti badalni hai)
  • Strong integrity (hum desh ki seva karne nikle hain, satta paane ke liye nahin)
  • Understanding of practical day-to-day things (agar aapse koi rishwat maangta hai to mana mat karein, de dein, aur corruption hotline par phone karein)
  • Willingness and ability to get their hands dirty (the entire process of forming the party, facing the initial ridicule, still fighting the elections and winning).

If I see obstacles, it is not because I imagine Arvind Kejriwal giving a monstrous laughter sitting on CM’s chair in the privacy of his office that he has fooled the entire nation (barring the few clever social media supporters of older parties). No, I don’t doubt his intentions and integrity failing, and hopefully, neither those of his closest colleagues. I am not worried about bureaucrats impeding his war against corruption in Delhi either. If a bureaucrat or an activist tries to fight corruption, he is really too powerless. If a CM wants to do it, the obstacles will be surmountable.

The problems that would come are the problems of democratic process.

  1. Democracy, AAP and Kejriwal want to do what aam aadmi wants. Problem comes when
    • AAM aadmi doesn’t want the right thing: If the media would stop conducting polls amidst urban elites and go to all the aam aadmi’s of the country, what would the majority think of legalizing homosexuality? Will AAP support what aam aadmi wants? Or will it take a high moral ground? The humility that makes Kejriwal and his colleagues so endearing, will it let them take that high moral ground over the sentiments of majority of aam aadmi? Will aam aadmi still accept them if they did so?
    • Two sections of AAM aadmi’s want different things: What is the right side on an issue like reservation? Those who opposed increasing reservation quotas were no less of aam aadmi’s than those who favoured it.
  2. I will repeat what Will Durant says Plato said: Aristocracy ruins itself by limiting the circle of power too narrowly, oligarchy because of its scramble for immediate wealth. Democracy is also a problem because people are not properly equipped by education to select the best rulers and the wisest courses. They have no understanding, and only repeat what their rulers are pleased to tell them. Ultimately the most unscrupulous flatterer rises to power. If in simpler matter – like shoe making – we think only a specially-trained person will serve our purpose, shouldn’t we look for the service of the wisest and the best for ruling us. And not the handsomest, or the most eloquent one. 

    Indian politics, after independence, was not always devoid of principles and good intentions. A constitution of the kind we have, universal suffrage, fundamental rights, well balanced arms of governance, these could not have come our way if we didn’t have well-meaning politicians. And yet – like other forms of government, democracy destroys itself, by being too much of itself, by being too democratic. How much and for how long will AAP be able reverse the decline?

Despite the concerns, I am not predicting doom. Not in immediate future anyway. I am looking forward, very curiously, to the changes AAP is going to bring. Because we haven’t found the perfect form of government despite so many thousands of years of trying. Until then, we have to do with democracy. And so long has leaders have strong moral fiber, there is hope. When damnation of democracy takes place again, well… we will see.

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About Jaya

Jaya Jha is an entrepreneur, a techie, a writer and a poet. She was born and brought up in various town of Bihar and Jharkhand. A graduate of IIT Kanpur and IIM Lucknow, she realized early on that the corporate world was not her cup of tea. In 2008, she started Pothi.com, one of the first print-on-demand publishing platform in India. She currently lives in Bangalore and divides her time between writing and working on her company's latest product InstaScribe (http://instascribe.com) with a vision to make it the best e-book creation tool. Blog: http://jayajha.wordpress.com Twitter: @jayajha Facebook: http://facebook.com/MovingOnTheBook

2 thoughts on “AAP, Kejriwal, Democracy etc.

  1. A System – based Solution

    DEAR PEOPLE OF DELHI :

    Of course , you have a right to complain to your government and seek solutions to your problems

    But then , 150 lakh people could each have a problem which , he / she wants solved ” yesterday ” !

    That would inundate your government , leading to a chaos , instead of satisfactory solutions !

    That is why Arvind said ,

    ” Give us 10 days time to put in place , a system ”

    You could help him devise / implement such a system

    To begin with , submit your complaints in the following ” Structured ” manner ( – should be NEATLY handwritten ) :

    ————————————-

    COMPLAINT FORM

    > Complainant Name

    > Age

    > Gender

    > Mobile No

    > Landline No

    > Email Id ( Optional )

    > Address

    > Nature of Complaint

    > To be attended by Dept ( your best guess )

    > Max no of days in which to attend ( be generous )

    > Date submitted ( date / month / year )

    ————————————————————–

    You may handover your complaint to ,

    > Government Secretariat

    > Arvind’s Residence ( deposit in box kept outside )

    > Nearest AAP office

    You gave previous Congress Government , 15 years for solutions of your problems – with no solutions

    Now give , at least 15 days to AAP government !

    Be reasonable ! Be patient !

    DEAR ARVIND :

    Here are a few suggestions for you,

    > Within 10 days , print and distribute such a Complaint Form , widely
    all over Delhi . Keep it simple ! In Hindi as well !

    > Make it downloadable from Delhi Government web site

    > Within 15 days , enable online submission of complaints on Govt web
    site . For each complaint , give comprehensive feedback . Make entire
    database searchable to any visitor , in a transparent manner

    > Within 30 days , start a Call – Center , where people can register their
    complaints over phone ( IVRS ? )

    > Within 45 days , launch Mobile App , ” Magic Wand ” , suggested by
    me , 2 days back

    * hemen parekh ( 30 Dec 2013 / Mumbai )

  2. You expressing a good old criticism. Modern structure of governments try to curb the excesses of democracies.

    I think Arvind and his close allays are aware of limits of their brand of democracy. For example, AAP has already refused to discuss Kashmir in any serious way. There are hard problems of the society that can not be solved by strictly following their methodology. As you have pointed out some of them already.

    But somethings can be made better by doing what they are doing. And, hope they do not make other things worse.

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