Is India Becoming An Oligarchy?

Posted on January 31, 2012 in Society

By Utsav Chaudhary:

Abraham Lincoln’s most famous quote about democracy says that a democratic government is ‘of the people, by the people, for the people’. Taking this quote as the base, the Indian constitution was framed. But today, is the government of India ‘of the people’ or ‘of the people in power’?

The above question is rhetoric for a reason. If we chastise the current situation in India, we can derive that the decisions taken by the government lately are benefitting the people in power rather than the public.

A person has to sit on fast until death with the whole nation by his side to demand a bill that the whole nation covets. Isn’t it a bound duty of a democratic government to provide people what they want?

A person opened incessant fire at a crowded railway station, claiming hundreds of lives, is given the right to fight for justice & crores of rupees have been spent on him while a huge faction of people in India live in destitute. No action has been taken despite many protests and objection doing the rounds. Is this person a guest or a traitor to India?

The fundamental rights in the part III of the constitution of India, provides a citizen with the right to freedom of speech and expression under Article 19. For years people craved for a platform to speak about their dissent towards the government or basically to cash in their right to freedom of speech. With internet & social networking sites, the people of India now can raise their voice and express their views on the critical issues & share them with the world. Imposing a ban on these websites would be government’s treachery to the constitution of India as it will take away their right to freedom of speech. The same question arises again, is the Indian government for the people?

Another coin in the bank of this perfidious government is the recent ban on Salman Rushdie’s video call from the Jaipur Literary festival. It sounds comical as well as chimerical that the ‘Satanic verses’ which was banned in 1988 is still the root cause for the author to be deprived of the right to visit this country. His purpose of attending the festival was to interact with his ardent readers and not to talk about his banned book. In fact Rushdie has visited the country many times after the ban on his book but no issues were raised then. Is the minuscule issue been made a prodigious one just before the UP elections in order to win the Muslim vote bank? The ban was imposed on ‘satanic Verses’ and not on Rushdie, so by not allowing him to enter our country is the government amending the constitution itself? Is it on a path that deviate it from being democratic?

The Indian government is now becoming an oligarchy – ruled by a few people. None of the actions lately have been ‘for the people’; still, is it imperative that we call it a democracy?

When asked for answers and explanations, the ‘rulers’ equivocate and baffle the public. Ostensibly these oligarchs use the 1.21 billion people according to their will & apparently there is no solution to it. I hope I would not be banned after this because the government is lately on a banning spree; it bans everything that criticizes it. It’s high time we should raise our voice against these oligarchs & help India function according to its public and not the rulers.

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Nicely put Utsav.No doubt in my mind that India has now become an oligarchic system.
Just like in a capitalist system power & money keeps on accumulating on few shores, our political class & the so called people’s representatives in power have accumulated on the Govt. of India like dust.The same families & groups are there to choose from.
There is a need to revamp the oligarchs.

Jayeta Gill

Utsav i totally second that. I really don’t think our country to be a democracy. A minor democracy ruled by a handful of shameful people. The topic of Salman Rushdie’s visit to the Jaipur literature fest is such a wasteful topic and so shameful. A writer of our own country, who’s books are read world-wide, and an acclaimed write who gave us books like the midnight’s children and more can be asked not to attend his own country’s Lit Fest. The government stoops down to any level for their vote banks. I was at jaipur too for the Lit Fest and when i got to know that Mr.Rushdie was no more coming and his video conference wont also be aired, i was disgusted out of my head. In simple words this ‘oligarchy’ needs to be changed, given a true democracy form.

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