Friday, May 26, 2006

Educated Politicians-Can They Ever Make Any Difference?

Government of India decided to implement 27% reservation for OBC students starting June of next year. People in India are divided about the need for such a reservation. I believe that introducing reservations without developing the infrastructure to bring poor to mainstream is never going to succeed. Most of the poor people in this country has no access to basic education and hence the new reservation is going to help only the rich among the backward class. You don’t need a Harvard degree to understand the drawback of this present reservation system.

We have a Prime Minister who is Oxford educated. By glancing at his education and what he has done as Finance Minister of India we all believed he is suppose to know what is right and what is wrong for India. Without any protest he agreed for implementing reservation for OBC. There are many highly educated ministers like
Mani Shankar Aiyer (Cambridge), P Chidambaram and Kapil Sibal (Harvard) in the Union Cabinet. Did they speak anything against reservations? Why ? The answer is simple. If Chidambarams or Mani Shankar Aiyers or for that matter any MP speak against reservation, he/she won’t see the Lok Sabha again.

Welcome to the world of Indian politics where ultimate aim is POWER. To achieve power one needs “NUMBERS” on their side and not education. To achieve the “numbers” you need to play DIRTY POLITICS and both educated and less educated politicians have to play the same game for their political survival. UPA government and Arjun Singh are playing the same political game with the mute support of highly educated ministers in the cabinet.

In this context I would like to discuss the importance of Lok Paritran.
Lok Paritran is a political party formed in February 2006 by a group of 6 who graduated from IIT Mumbai and Kanpur. They contested for 8 seats in the recently concluded Tamil Nadu election and made a decent show by coming 3rd in few constituencies.

My question is "Can these educated youth make any difference in politics?" Ultimately the aim of Lok Paritran is to capture power and I am pretty sure that a party if it opposes say freebees or reservations to OBC’s, is never going to come even near to power. Lok Paritran and his leaders have to play almost all the tricks the seasoned politicians like
Laloo Yadav plays if they have to come to power. Anyways Lok Paritran has started showing the world that it is no different from any Indian political party – after 4 months of it forming there is a vertical split in the party with each group accusing other group "non-secular, arrogant, high handed and utterly non-transparent”. Are we not seeing the birth of a true Indian political party here?


Hey Readers, what do you think? Your comments are most welcome
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Blogger verbaltorture said...

Woohoo ! Me first !

*runs away to save comment*

May 26, 2006 5:06 AM  
Blogger verbaltorture said...

*comes back to make real comment*

I guess we have been discussing reservation for quite some time on this blog now. Earlier we spoke about reservation for mgmt, now we talk about reservation for OBCs.

But I guess the key question here is different - whether educated politicans make a difference.

I *clears throat* personally feel that power is a great motivator. Irrespective of which combination of alphabets one has behind one's name, the feeling of being powerful is uniform. Power feels good. And once you've tasted it, you just don't want to let go.

Now, politics. It's a dirty game altogether , and like you said, you don't need a Harvard deg to figure that out (Even Laloo did!). When choosing any career,be it IT or politics, there's always the Maslow's heirarchy to be followed. Why talk big ? You may not like everything you're being asked to do at work (I don't). But I still do it - I play along. Because the question here is of sustenance. Of being noticed. Of still being in the battlefield. Of not getting kicked out into oblivion.

So if a Harvard educated man remains silent about a pathetic decision, it's not surprising. Just that he cares more about the Lok Sabha than about the Harvard degree.

It's all nice to say that you wanna serve the country blah blah. But as you said, the final destination is power - and all the nice things it brings along with it - fame, money, a free house, pref treatment, world tours at the common mans' expense et al.

What I find disheartening is that such educated people choose such a corrupted route to fame. If they wanted to contribute, they could have done it in a million other ways - start a world-class company/law firm/whatever and give employment to thousands of people, and subsequently, food for their families. Now that's what I call nation-building.

Obviously, these fellas are interested only in their own welfare, and def not of the country. And I, for one, am not surprised.

*runs to get a gulp of water*

May 26, 2006 5:18 AM  
Anonymous Pradeep said...

I know for a fact that LParitran finished with a Bronze in Mylapore
and AnnaNagar. Was it this good in any place else? (Brijesh Bhai, your
referrence to LP "finishing 3rd in few constituencies" threw me off a
bit...just thinking out loud)

Good post again, Brijesh.

May 26, 2006 7:49 AM  
Blogger AJITH said...

True, this is the heights of vote bank politics...We know that it is wrong, politicians know that it is wrong..But the irony is that none of us can set it correct.

May 26, 2006 12:48 PM  
Blogger കേരളഫാർമർ/keralafarmer said...

ഇന്ത്യൻ ഭരണഘടനയുടെ ഏറ്റവും വലിയ പാളിച്ചയാണ്‌ ആകെ വോട്ടർമാരുടെ 50 % ത്തിൽ കൂടുതൽ വോട്ട്‌ വേണം എന്ന്‌ എഴുതി ചേർക്കാത്തത്‌. അധികാരത്തിലേറിയാൽ ആരെ കൂട്ടുപിടിച്ചും അഞ്ചുകൊല്ലം ഭരിക്കാം എന്നത്‌ മറ്റൊന്ന്‌. പിന്നോക്കവിഭാഗങ്ങളെ സഹായിക്കേണ്ടത്‌ ആവശ്യം തന്നെ. അത്‌ താഴെ തട്ടിൽ നിന്ന്‌ സഹായങ്ങൾ നൽകി ഉന്നതവിദ്യാഭ്യാസം വരെ എത്തിക്കാം. അതുകഴിഞ്ഞുള്ള പഠനം യോഗ്യതയാവണം മാനദണ്ഡം. ഫീസ്‌ സൌജന്യങ്ങളാകാം. ഇപ്പോൾ ലഭിക്കുന്ന ആനുകൂല്യങ്ങൾ പിന്നോക്ക വിഭാഗങ്ങളെന്നു പറയുന്ന മുതലാളിമാരുടെ കൈകളിൽ എത്തിക്കുന്നു. മതേതരത്വം, ജനധിപത്യം എല്ലാം നമുക്ക്‌ നഷ്ടപ്പെട്ടു എന്നു പറയുന്നതാവും നല്ലത്‌.
My Pages

May 26, 2006 12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

excellent topic selection ....rather than selecting controversial topics head on, u r trying to view it from a different angle . keep up the good work.

May 27, 2006 3:02 AM  
Blogger Brijesh said...

@verbal torture-I got your first comment may be 1 minute after I posted this one.

This thought of "educated politicians" came to my mind after I read few newspaper articles and blogs about present CM of Kerala that he is a school dropout. I started thinking- does it makes a difference. Every politician plays politics and if Achuthanandan has got CM post he knows how to play it. Also I saw a lot of reports after Lok Paritran did well in the Tamil Nadu elections that more educated people from IIT and IIM should come forward to politics. Hence this post.
Yes as u said power is a great motivator. I was trying to think of a person who retired from active politics. Except Jyothi Basu I couldn’t remember anyone. Jyothi Basu retired after he was CM for about 20 years. He might have felt bored and he retired.. He also made a big hue and cry when he just missed PM’s chair (remember “historic blunder” statement by him).

@Pradeep-That was what I meant. Coming 3rd in 2 constituencies is a great thing for a party formed about 4 months back. Thanks.

@Ajith-That is our fate. We people are also responsible for this.

@Kerala Farmer-Uncle, first of all let me congratulate you for your blog was mentioned in Malayala Manorama article about Blogswara. Your blog is unique that I don’t think so many “real” farmers like you are in the blog world. All your blogs have wealth of information Continue the good work.

If a rule comes that u need to get more than 50% of the total votes polled then things may change a little. I don’t still think that will change the system a lot. I also agree with u the present system of reservation only helps the children of people like Vellapally or Kunjali kutty.


May 28, 2006 3:11 AM  
Blogger Rakesh said...

I will only agree partly to the statement, educated politicians do make a difference. Manmohan and chidambaram, inspite of their failure to voice any opinion against reservations, have definitely contributed to the policy making in the country, especially in economic field. When compared to leaders like Laloo and Mulayam, or even an Arjun Singh, they are far better.

May 29, 2006 9:46 PM  
Blogger Brijesh said...

Rakesh - I do agree with u that Dr manmohan Singh and Chidambaram has done a lot for the country. But the point I am trying to make here is that they also play dirty politics and in that regard there is no difference between highly educated and less educated politician.

May 30, 2006 6:53 AM  
Blogger Memoryking said...

Liked your blog. Here is mine "No! Let’s join the self-proclaimed snobs protesting with slogans “Remember your place”, polishing shoes and cleaning premises? Let’s pretend not to see it at all! Damn Reservations!"

June 15, 2006 10:14 AM  

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