We are a wretched lot indeed. Mathew Samuel’s story is all the proof one needs to understand why a strong whistleblower act must come before anything else (After Eleven Years..., May 14).
Yes, Mr Samuel, you nailed Bangaru, but your life has gone steadily downhill since, hasn’t it? No wonder you advise other camera-in-underwear heroes against sting operations.
Dr V. Mahadevan, Chennai
Anyone will turn into a cynic after reading this account. People must make serious attempts to participate in political discourse.
Sriram N., Bangalore
When you undertake a sting operation against the ruling party, you have to expect to be harassed. Samuel should have considered this while working out his fees for the assignment.
Venkatesh G. Iyer, Chennai
Nations are built by worthy sons like Samuel. May those of his tribe multiply. Someone ought to extend him a helping hand.
Gilbert D’Souza, Bangalore
It is strange enough that Tehelka was so eager to conduct a sting against the BJP-led government; to have the sting operator grumble about poor pay is disingenuous.
Vikram Johri, on e-mail
The bjp has forgotten Bangaru and he will never be heard of again. He’ll be required to fend for himself. This is the fate of a Dalit politician. Others will continue to enjoy wine, women and cash as usual.
Sanket Biswas, Calcutta
The words “Dalit icon” might have been expunged when referring to the CBI’s “fast-tracking the case against” Bangaru Laxman. Corruption has no religion.
Nebil Nizar, Jeddah
Welcome to the games of power and intrigue. Don’t be the small fish if you want to do the heavy lifting. The more things change in Eternal India, the more they stay the same.
Arun Maheshwari, Bangalore
There is no privilege motion strong enough to remove the overpowering stench of corruption from Parliament. The politicians are so conditioned to the smell that the mere mention of cleaning it disturbs them.
Subhash Saini, Hoshiarpur
Tehelka is a succer to have abandoned its hero.
What is wrong if someone is tested on what his/her behavior is when given a situation? George Fernandez got a big one. Let's wait and watch Jaya Jaitly, Brig.Iqbal, and Satyamurthy. Mr.Mathew and his family might feel bad about what happened and I am sure they have undergone the toughest of times since 2001, but Mr.Mathew and his Wife must understand that "every good thing/action happens with a price". Your hardship is a sacrifice for the nation. Wait for the good times to come.
Infact this kind of tests are supposed to be performed on the elite-people before they occupy their seats in their respective offices after they are elected. If everything is happening for money then why did "the schools and colleges" teach us the directive principles, our constitution, law, rights as a citizen, bla bla bla... and every human servant is sacred and every civil office is sacrosanct?
If GOI wants to proceed like this i.e. against nature, against all that we believe through our learning, then it should change all that exists as doctrines and principles. So that we can start believing (100%) what we experience and not what we have learnt (0%). The coming generations can have 100% belief on what they learn and what they experience say after 25years if today the change is done. I think the middle-class and the poor are already 50% screwed-up mentally due to all that is happening for money.
You HAD to mention that it WASN'T Sonia Gandhi & Co?
You were kept with the accussed officers, provide more clarity or do we like reading dumb???
If CBI was in his favor then, what happened when Congress led UPA1&2 came to power?
Why didn't you use media to put pressure for getting fair treatment????????
Welcome to the games of power and intrigue. Never be Alice in Wonderland and don't be the small fish/pawn doing the heavy lifting. Until "rule of law" works there will be no salvation for us as a people. There are no many ancient cultural barriers and modern ones too for "rule of law" to work reasonably for us. It is a low probability tough steep climb up the mountain from here for us.
"In retrospect, I now believe Operation Westend has been a wasted exercise. Nothing has changed. If anything, things have become much worse. Corruption in procurement for the armed forces has become endemic and more money is changing hands than ever before."
In Desh, the more things change the more they stay the same - that is why we are "Eternal India". The poor, small guy (Mathew - the workhorse at Tehelka, Bangaru - the Dalit) are left holding the bag of "sh*t" and "rich, big and poweful" walk into the sunset and to the bank laughing all the way of course, some with a "beauty" holding onto their arm - real life and reel life (in movies) don't follow each other. It would of course be a different matter if all the "actors" were in the same room with a ceiling fan buzzing - think of the fun when the bag of "sh*t" would hit the whiring fan :-) - the perverse revenge of the poor and small.
Always, remember, the politician in particular always wins .... the dice is heavily loaded in their favor. Bangaru was an exception - may be as a dalit didn't have many friends in a "predominantly upper caste loaded hindu party" since a fall-guy was also needed - somebody had to pay for the system to survive and all of us to sleep peacefully. See how they are getting away with Lokpal - they always knew they had time and the dice loaded in their favor. They might know much but they know how to work democracy for themselves (and their near and dear ones). Team Anna has been suitably shackled - fluttering in the wind - after all "all we are just dust in the wind".
Tomorrow might be another day but today all I can think is - we should learn to live with corruption and not waste energy on it. Only question in my mind is can we with the endemic corruption we have still achieve some modicum of being a "decent society" - somewhat better human development indices. We should of course keep inviting some foreign dignitaries - some American - some English - some European, on and off, e.g., Hillary Clinton, to tell us, via Darkha Butt, how great we are and the great future we have - of course as long as we buy "American" now.
But what do they then about the deep desire for "superpower" I suggest we keep it alive in magazines, books, articles, forums and what not .... real work for it is just too hard and we are not cut out for it either.
Another Day in Desh has begun. Welcome to the comedy of errors - the theatre of the absurd. The many gods and goddesses enjoying the theatre show down here from their balcony seats - like a great masala bollywood movie.
What is the significance of a Christian funded attempt to defame BJP Government while conveniently becoming kumbakarna when dealing with corrupt Christian Congress which has been involved in far more serious scams unlike petty scams of Rs 1 Lakh!
Will you do these against Antony, Moino or Pee Chidambaram? I really doubt.
Not only Mathew Samuel but for Anirudha Behl also has experienced upturn in life; pso tehalaka. One is for better another is for worst. Perhaps he must have realized that he was used as an expendable pawn.
Where is Tehelka...when lakhs of crores are being looted openly?? its so shameful that Teheka as is and was known as Congress funded closes its eyes and feels a great job has been done by catching a petty thief! whereas its masters have looted the country dry to its bone!
Outlook must question these characters .......how much they got from Congress???
I feel for you,Samuel. I sincerely feel for you. I hope you can get on with your life and retrieve some financial betterment from your career.
This is a real shame for our so called government and Justice. Its all in the hands of these politicians. These people can do anything to help out their brother and sisters. But thanks you Mr Samuel for such an daring attempt to have a sting operation on defence ministry.
Anyone will turn into a cynic after reading this account. See how the politicians and officials use all the considerable powers at their disposal to crush a journalist who exposed their corruption. This in the age of free information flow. Ordinary honest people must make serious attempts to participate in the political discourse.
Mathew Samuel, I sympathize with your plight. Were Bangaru Lakshman not a dalit, I am sure, you were perhaps spared the trouble of facing what has encountered you in consequences. But please do the favour to the country's disadvantaged and discriminated humanity----dalit and tribal, either government servant or politician,----- who are held exclusively and indiscriminately by the upper caste press, to be dishonest and corrupt by disclosing the full list of the people you had got on camera taking money and playing with high society callgirls, etc. That will be a solid service in the war against corruption. Please do it soon. Can OUTLOOK approach Mathew Samuel?
Jaya jaitley, R. K. Gupta, Satyamurthy, are only few, not even the smallest friction who have been squeesing the blood and bone marrow of the nation. Please disclose their names. This will not bring any further harm to you, I guess.
BJP has been forgotten Bangaru and he will never be heard again. He'll be required to fend for himself. This is the fate of a dalit politician. Others will continue to enjoy wine, women and cash as usual.
Poor Mr Samuel, Life of a sting operator is not easy, as is evident. Of course you nailed Bangaru ,but George Fernandes?After getting due publicity and monetary rewards your life has gone steadily downhill, with nobody even remembering you.How sad.No wonder you advice other camera-in-underwear heroes not to do it.Tehelka is not exactly doing great either if one goes by current status reports.Modi is their sole target these days with crumbs falling from the secular dining table and the occasional TV punditry deriding all and sundry who oppose the secular army. Carry on Samuel, good luck,
Thanks for this article Outlook and for the accompanying photo of Mathew Samuel. The comment of the CBI director was so telling - why did you do sting and increase your and my headache.
India always treats its fighters with scorn! We are a wretched lot indeed. This story is all the proof one needs to understand why a strong whistleblower act must come before anything else.
First of all let me congratulate Mr. Mathew Samuel and Team Tehelka for carrying out this sting operation and exposing the corruption prevailing in the Army. As said in this article officers and men are frustrated with corruption. In private conversation they confess that corruption is rampant and also add that they are angry, frustrated and also helpless. The condition is still the same. Nothing much has changed from 2001. Tatra Deal, Sukna Land Scam etc corroborates this.
I have a strong disagreement. I do not think CBI was in a hurry to convict Mr. Bengaru Laxman. Even Mathew Samuel who came on 'News Hour' in Asianet Television did not subscribe to the view of Adv. P.S Sreedharan Pillai of BJP that CBI was in a hurry to convict Bengaru Laxman. Then how did Mathew's view changed very fast. Now he says
''I was also disturbed by the question of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) fast-tracking the case against the BJP’s Dalit icon and not against equally or even more influential people like Jaya Jaitly, R.K. Gupta, R.K. Jain and others, all caught by me on camera, accepting bribes just like Bangaru Laxman did.''
The wording 'Dalit Icon' must be expuunged. Corruption has no relegion.
"But I was also disturbed by the question of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) fast-tracking the case against the BJP’s Dalit icon and not against equally or even more influential people like Jaya Jaitly, R.K. Gupta, R.K. Jain and others, all caught by me on camera, accepting bribes just like Bangaru Laxman did."
Bangaru Laxman belongs to a certain region of India, just like A.Raja and the Reddy Brothers, all of whom are in jail.. The CBI is mainly populated by people belonging to another region of India, just like Jaitly, R.K.Gupta and R.K.Jain. Do we need a greater proof of a North-South divide in this country?
It is the price one pays for doing something beneficial to the society in India. One has to ruin himself and his family to be able to do something good to the society. We Indians (Dirty Indians) are like that. We will make national heros out of selfish persons who have never done any deed beneficial to society and our goverments compete with each other in doling out monetary benefits to such persons but we let the original national heroes die in extreme poverty and anonimity. We are hypocrites to the core appreciating only the person in position to provide immediate monetary benefit to us as if only money is every thing in our life. What I do not understand is the fact that commissioned officers in armed forces are selected through a rigorous process after OLQ (officer like qualitites) are found in them which includes honesty and integrity. If a person is not having such qualities how he manage to get selected in armed forces in the first place. Does it mean that there is corruption even in recruitment process of armed forces?
“The CMR i.e, charges of Corruption, Murder, Rape is like HIV, which one can suppress for years together and lead a normal life, yet finally dies of the Secondary Infection caused only by it.”
Corrupt we are; corruption we defend : is the cardinal motto of all the politicians ! There is no privilege motion from all the so called clean politicians to remove the overpowering stench of corruption from the parliament.Rather they are conditioned to the stench that a mere mention of cleaning disturb them and they play a united symphony to let it be as it is.
IS IT A CATCH-22 SITUATION, EVEN FOR THE POLITICIANS,FROM WHICH THERE IS NO ESCAPE ?
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