The land of snake-charmers or the land of IT professionals as it is called today, India is famous for more things than one. The land of the golden bird is now renowned for another color in today’s age. The suave, sophisticated, sexy and solid- black. That is the color of the money that many wealthy Indians have stashed away in foreign banks or in property investments. India is not just progressing in the field of glitz and glam but also in the arena of spam and scams.
It is a given that those who enter the Indian political system get sucked into its whirlwind of malverisation and venality. It’s quite hard to climb out of the shithole that one gets into by investing in payola in order to secure a certain post or get a particular favor. This throws them into a vicious circle from which escape is nigh impossible.
There are many who enter the political arena with the aim of doing something ‘for the country’. Such people meet three kinds of fates:
- If they are simple-minded and try to cling to their values, they often end up in a worse position than what they started with. Can we quote IAS officer, DK Ravi who recently ended up dead under mysterious circumstances?
- The new entrants have to keep mum while the biggies do their jobs whereas they fulfil their roles of being pawns in the grand game of thrones at stake in this country. I am sure you know about our good old Manmohan Singh, the stellar economist and former PM, who is now embroiled in the Coalgate scam.
- The third fate lies in moulding oneself to the kind of person that the current game requires you to be. Hence, becoming a quintessential Indian politician well versed in the rules of the game by now.
There actually is no single rule of thumb that will work in as diverse a country as India. With a host of religions, an assortment of groups, units and factions and a multitudinous variety of languages, it is quite hard to appeal to all classes and groups of people. Especially when nearly everyone is a slave of babudom and ‘office-office’ mentality. Most of us expect government officials to take bribes and be slack and shoddy about their work, so much so that this expectation seeps into their attitude as well, thus marking a perimeter out of which none of us dare venture. Thus, corruption and not development sustains our economy today.
The next big reason for the immortality of corruption is the ‘chalta hai’ attitude which is practiced by nearly everyone in the country. Saradha scam? Chalta hai. Maoists creeping up on us? Chalta hai. Violation of ceasefire by Pak? Chalta hai. Another Nirbhaya raped? Arre sab chalta hai! Until it happens to you, sab chalta hai!
Corruption is not limited to money laundering and huge amounts pilfered from the government exchequer. It is a disease, a malaise, a state of mind, a virus which has taken residence in our attitudes and lives and refuses to leave us. The blatant lack of law enforcement and glaring disregard for laws and rules are the symptoms of this disease. What can an Anna Hazaare achieve with his fast or a Kejriwal achieve with his promises of standing up for the aam aadmi unless the aam aadmi wakes up from its chalta hai slumber and musters the courage to say- nai chalega ab!
Till that day, corruption will thrive and grow, every single day, devouring us and our hopes along with us.