Tag: Lokpal Bill

Plots and song

”Bhushans get two prime farmhouse plots from Mayatwati govt for a song” said the headline of Indian Express on 20/4/2011.

What song? Munni badnam hui? Sheela ki jawani? Dum maro dum? Did Bhushans sing the song in front of Mayawati?

The cost of the plot is Rs.3.5 crore. At the time of allotment 35 lakh rupees were to be paid. The rest to be paid in 16 instalments over 10 years. Is 3.5 core rupees a small amount? If it is less than quarter of the market rate what is the market rate? Sometimes the campaign against someone has motives other than exposing the wrongdoing. As Dom Moraes wrote in his book the campaign against Abdul Rahman Antulay was because Ramnath Goenka did not get cement.

As Elliot Carver said in Tomorrow Never Dies: The most important question is not what, where or when. It is why.

Why did the report appear? The CD failed to get the Bhushans out of the drafting committee. This was another attempt. By the way Elliott Carver was a newspaper owner. He tried his best to China and England fight a war. He did not succeed and had a watery grave.

Then came the report that the government owned Central Forensic Science Laboratory found the CD not tampered with. This contradicted report from Truth Labs which had held the CD was tampered with. Truth Labs stood by its report.

Nobody from Indian Express appeared on Karan Razdan’s Last Word on CNN-IBN on 22/4/2011.

According to a poll 65% of people want Bhushans to stay in the committee. They see the attacks on Bhushans as an attempt to derail the Lokpal Bill. Somebody has filed a PIL against notification of formation of drafting committee of Lokpal Bill. Somebody has filed a PIL against Anna Hazare. Santosh Hegde is considering quitting the Lokpal Bill panel. The targeting of activists will not stop if Bhushans quit and others take their place.

NGOs under attack

Ever since the notification of the formation of the drafting committee for Lokpal Bill, NGOs have come under attack from several persons. Someone wanted them to be included in Lokpal Bill. Someone made vague accusations of corruptions against NGOs. It seems to be an attempt to divert attention from the real issue of corruption by public servants.

The accusations are NGOs are not accountable to anyone, one can declare oneself an NGO and can become very rich very quickly and you need not explain how you got the money and how you spent it, nearly all the NGOs who set out to save India’s environment are frauds, NGOs set to save poor spend time and money on international conferences and senior government officials become NGOs after retirement while politicians use NGOs to hide black money.

Since no NGO is mentioned by name it is difficult to know who those NGOs are. Some are said to be members of NAC. Aruna Roy and Harsh Mander are members of NAC. NDTV had campaigns to save tigers and beaches but it is not an NGO. There is Centre for Science and Environment which takes up some causes.

If foreign financiers give money to NGOs who claim to save environment or poor and the NGOs are not doing that it is for the financiers to question them file cases for fraud. If the financiers are fools and are taken for a ride by NGOs it is their problem. If NGOs get money from government then the government comes into picture. Anyway, nothing prevents the government from enacting a law that makes NGOs accountable.

Some people who till the other day blamed politicians and democracy for various ills have suddenly developed love for politicians and democracy. They have either changed their colours or are showing their true colours.