• A Steep Bill to Foot
    Jun 27, 2011

    Civil society activists are missing the woods for the trees (Citizen Cane vs King Canute, Jun 13). Why are they insisting upon including the PM and the chief justice of India under the Lokpal? If all those below these two are included, a lot of dirt in the country could be cleaned up. Ninety per cent clean is better than 10 per cent clean. Before trying to bring the PM under the Lokpal, the CMs should have been brought under the Lokayukta. Team Hazare too is acting self-righteous, in wanting to decide who to have in the drafting team and who to ban from their platform altogether. Blame the government for bringing things to this pass. It’s a farce that it allows non-state actors to draft a bill, but does not extend the same courtesy to the opposition members. Tomorrow another ‘civil society’ with its own agenda may sit on another drafting team.


    K. Suresh, Bangalore


    It’s disturbing to see the media, especially electronic, going gaga over Baba Ramdev and Anna Hazare as if they are the panacea for all our national ills. However good they or their intentions may be, in the absence of a proper institution behind them, their actions constitute nothing but a threat to parliamentary democracy. Let them first stand for elections and win them, form a government and then give us good governance.


    N. Paul Jeyatilak, Chennai


    The PM too should be included. And in order to maintain continuity in governance, the appointment of a deputy PM should be mandatory, like the vice-president in the US. In case the PM comes under scrutiny, the deputy can take over.


    R. Narasimhan, Chennai


    King Canute may insist till kingdom come that he’s clean, but can he deny he is heading a government full of corrupt men?


    Akanksha Jagannathan, on e-mail


    Civil society activists must understand that their disdain and distrust of politics and the political process will be dangerous for parliamentary democracy in the long run.


    K.P. Rajan, Mumbai


    Instead of dissipating our energies into analysing the pros and cons of Baba Ramdev’s agitation, why not focus on the issues he is raising?


    Arun Jha, Patna


    The government nominees of the Lokpal bill drafting panel are fuming because Anna Hazare called them liars and cheats. Hazare had, in fact, suggested that all discussions be video-conferenced so that interested parties could tune in, and perhaps make suggestions. Of course, transparency being the last thing on their mind, the government side firmly rejected it.


    C.J.M. Mathew, Bangalore


    ‘Baba’ and ‘swami’ are no longer honorifics, just indicators of an occupation. The cadre as a whole is the Bureaucracy of God. Employment in this service gets tax-free benefits.


    Mukul Dube, Delhi


    Just as 2G sealed the fate of the DMK in Tamil Nadu, the Lokpal bill will prove to be a nail in the coffin of the Congress in the next elections.


    Vishnu S., Kollam


    The Congress is thinking ahead. With Baba Rahul all padded to become PM, the Congress can ill-afford the institution of a Lokpal.


    Bharat, Delhi

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