Tag: shivraj patil

Indian lootocracy

India, besides being a mobocracy and quotocracy, is a lootocracy. People in power and those who can influence people in power through bribes and other means loot the country. Politicians want to loot the country even after they lose power. When there is criticism of politicians some say “Don’t criticize politicians. All are not bad. There are some good politicians.” After some demands for privileges by former speakers Purno Albert Sangma and Somnath Chatterjee it seems no good politician is left.

It is a shame that P. A. Sangma and Somnath Chatterjee wrote to Meira Kumar for privileges former speakers. Other former speakers are Balram Jakhar, Rabi Ray, Shivraj Patil and Manohar Joshi. P. A. Sangma and Rabi Ray were Speakers for less than two years. Manohar Joshi was speaker for two years. Purno Albert Sangma and Somnath Chatterjee wanted privileges because former presidents, vice presidents and prime ministers get privileges. Somnath Chatterjee later said he made a request, he does not want a house in Delhi, when in Delhi he wants secretarial staff, a car and driver.

When the constitution was framed only the president was entitled to some privileges, like free house and pension, after ceasing to hold office. Over the years the privileges were extended to vice president and prime minister. Some years back law was changed to enable even a spouse of a former president to get benefits. If former speakers get benefits deputy speakers and deputy chairpersons will also demand benefits. Meira Kumar is willing to grant privileges to former speakers. She too can enjoy those privileges when she becomes former speaker.

Industrialists who bribe politicians in power grow richer. If they make profit, they keep it. If they make losses government bails them out by corporate debt restructuring. Those who do not bribe get into trouble even if they have broken no law. If they win the case in Supreme Court the law gets changed retrospectively. If Vodafone had bribed people who mattered, the law would not have been changed retrospectively by way of clarification in Finance Bill 2012. If 122 telecom companies whose licences were struck down by Supreme Court had bribed people in power a new law would have nullified the judgment.

Bureaucrats who loot the country have made lot of money. Their salaries are in thousands, the bribes are in crores. Some were found with more than 100 crore rupees.

There are journalists who assist politicians, bureaucrats, industrialists and others in looting the country. Some journalists report some small cases of corruption but do not report big cases. When some big cases become public knowledge these journalists justify the corrupt.

When central government grants privileges, state governments follow suit. In some states former chief ministers get free houses. MLALADS and MLCLADS followed MPLADS.

The loot of the country must be stopped. Privileges should be scrapped. If anyone has to be provided security it should be at his/her private residence. Security should be provided if there is need and not as status symbol. It should be to the people who held office and not to their family members. Former presidents, vice presidents, prime ministers and their family members should be asked to vacate houses provided to them. They should travel at their expense.

We should abolish pension for MPs. There was no pension till some decades back. Then MPs gave it themselves. It was for those who were MPs for five years. Then it was changed to all MPs. So if someone is MP even for a day he gets pension for life. For those who were MPs upto five years it is Rs.20,000/- p.m. For others it is Rs.1,500/- p.m. more for each additional year completed. The number of ex-MPs being more than 1,000 pension per month will be more than 20 crore rupees per month.

Curious case of Khaled Chisti

On 22/6/2011 on NDTV 24×7’s Left Right and Centre the issue of showing mercy to Khaled Chisti was discussed. PM had written to Rajasthan’s Governor Shivraj Patil to release Khaled Chisti and Shivraj Patil had decided to seek legal advice. The question was whether India should show large-heartedness and release him on humanitarian grounds. The discussion led to some revelations.

Nidhi Razdan first asked audience members. One person said there are many Indians in Indian prisons in similar condition to that of Khaled Chisti. Nobody writes to PM about them. There should be common rule for all. One woman said she was fighting for justice and Pakistanis have carried out many terrorist activities in India. That meant he should not be released.

Nidhi Razdan asked Rajeev Shukla about releasing Khaled Chisti. Rajeev Shukla said Justice Markandeya Katju had sent his letter to PM through him through email and PM had replied to Markandeya Katju through him. So Rajeev Shukla was the intermediary between Markandeya Katju and PM.

The panellists were in agreement that Khaled Chisti be released on humanitarian grounds. Even BJP spokesperson Nirmala Seetharaman did not mention exchanging Khaled Chisti for the release of Sarabjit Singh. Ravi Shankar Prasad had demanded that if Khaled Chisti had to be released it should be in exchange for Sarabjit Singh.

Vinod Sharma said Markandeya Katju was a Kashmiri Pandit and a Kashmiri Pandit getting a Pakistani prisoner released will make Pakistani people happy about India and Markandeya Katju had written to Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari to release Gopal Das. Gopal Das was released after Manmohan Singh invited Pakistani leaders to attend Indo-Pak World Cup Semi-Final. That time nobody said anything about Markandeya Katju’s letter. Vinod Sharma was wrong when he said there was no terrorism 20 years back. Terrorism in Kashmir had got a boost when five terrorists were released to secure Rubiya Sayeed’s release in December 1989. Vinod Sharma is associated with Congress.

Siddharth Bhatia wanted Khaled Chisti released.

Till some days back nothing was heard about Khaled Chisti. How this issue suddenly became important is not clear. Rajeev Shukla is married to Ravi Shankar Prasad’s sister Anuradha. Shivraj Patil was Home Minister. There is more to the case than humanitarian consideration. Judges should not get entangled in such matters.