The article seems to be a valiant effort by Mr. Khare to defend Dr. Singh against perceived charges of corruption. The national perception today is that either Dr. Singh was a silent spectator to misdeeds happening in his Cabinet or did not do enough courage to curb corruption. One expected Mr. Khare to have analysed the facts behind the various scams instead of dismissing them offhand or indirectly attributing motives. It is odd too to speak of Dr. Singh being guilty of decency.
Calling Team Anna as “mob” is an attempt at undermining the citizen's constitutional right to question the malfunctioning of governance. Mr. Khare, who has tried hard to defend the weaknesses of Dr. Singh, and who we respect for his honesty, has indirectly implied that the Prime Minister is not cut out for the top job.
By harping on decency, he highlights how Dr. Singh has been unable to demonstrate a truly inspiring leadership that can stamp out rampant political corruption and induce fresh blood into the polity. On the contrary, silently watching crime or inefficacy is no less similar to complicity in the crime.
The members of Team Anna may not be Sankaracharyas, but Dr. Singh is not Lord Rama either. Unfortunately, he has let his ministers run amuck and is having to clean the stains they have left behind.
Corruption pertains to the political class which is why Team Anna is attacking the system. If the corporate world too is guilty, the government has the powers to control them. In business and industry it is the survival of the fittest, so everything appears to be fair. It is not so in governance.
Karavadi Raghava Rao,
Dr Singh is “neither a politician, a lawyer, a policeman, a revenue officer nor a businessman.” But as the Prime Minister, he has to prove to be a good administrator and a reader of human behaviour. Right now, he seems to be following a policy of hear, see and speak no evil. The multiple scams are the result of this. Instead of blaming institutions like the CAG and movements like Team Anna's, Mr. Khare should have been shrewd enough to have felt the pulse of the media and turn the searchlight inwards. Incompetence should not be reworded as decency and innocence.
The article's defence of the Prime Minister is high on rhetoric but low on substance. His “policy of reconciliation” is a euphemism for shameless capitulation before the bullying of rapacious and belligerent regional allies. History will judge him not for his academic credentials or personal honesty but for having presided over the most corrupt government of independent India.
Mr. Khare's article is lopsided. Coalition politics and reconciliation on the part of Dr. Singh have cost the nation dear. When things degenerated, causing despair, someone had to stand up and fight. This is what Team, and not Mob Anna, has done.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee was never undone by his decency. In fact, in an interview with a major national channel, he confessed that his inability to hit anyone below the belt was both his biggest qualification and disqualification. The difference with Mr. Vajpayee was a quintessential politician who kept to politics whereas Dr. Singh is an erudite economist who strayed into politics.
Had Dr. Singh been as firm in cleaning up corruption as he was while fighting for the nuclear deal — and where he delivered knockout punches and reflexes — and then not let the grass grow under his feet, he would not be in the position where he is today — the sorry target of Team Anna. He also has to face the ignominy of people like Baba Ramdev doling out suggestions on how to recover black money. What a fall!
What is Mr. Khare trying to propound? That we should celebrate that the head of the government is so generous in accepting his misfortune? And not allowing his kin to indulge in any sort of slickness, but watching his political teammates feast on the vitals of the nation?
Manas Teja K.,
A nefarious politician-corporate nexus is eating into the vitals of our economic democracy. Mr. Khare has rightly castigated corporate interests but has also swiftly let off the political class. Worse still, he has attacked the “mob” which is only demanding a strong law against criminal politicians.
Keywords: Manmohan Singh-Team Anna row