The recent Hazare spectacle made me realize how powerful hunger can be. It also made me realize that, in today’s world of global connectivity and exuberance of means enabling people to voice their opinions, it is so easy to whip up public’s emotions. The movement for support of Hazare is an example of this, people got overtly excited about the flawed idea that passing a bill that profoundly errs in understanding the ways in which corruption can be fought and irradiated in this country, is a cause worth fighting for. But, my biggest problem is with the means Anna Hazare adopted to coerce the government into agreeing to his demands. This trend is very detrimental to a democratic society and should be condemned by the citizens much less eulogized
Anna Hazare who is being compared to present day Gandhi, emulated Gandhi by going on hunger strike in order to be part of a committee that were to draft the Lokpal Bill. Gandhiji was the greatest soul that ever walked this earth, who taught us a philosophy, never seen before. The only thing people in India seem to have gathered from him is the culture of strikes and bandhs, shameful. When people compare Anna Hazare to Gandhi, it makes my skin crawl. Gandhi went on hunger strike to fight the alien, colonial rule and set his country free, not to be a part of a committee.
We live in a democratic country, we elect our government by our free will and it is government’s job to draft a bill and civil society has no business being part of such committees. Anna Hazare wanted equal representation of people and government in the drafting committee. Are you kidding? Isn’t government an extension of people’s will? It is one thing to ask for representation of public in such matter but blackmailing the government takes it to a whole new level.
It is a shame that an assortment of self-proclaimed social activists and public- seeking wannabees were able to coerce the government into agreeing to their demands. Have these do gooders completely missed the existence of Iom Sharmila, who has been on a hunger strike for last 11 years? I didn’t see such a stir in past 11 years. Government never repealed the AFSPA because a woman has been fasting for last 11 years? Can we blame the imminent state elections and series of scams for the current output of this particular hunger strike?
Menace of corruption can not be solved by the introduction of Lok Pal bill and hunger strikes are not the way to push a political agenda, in a constitutional democracy like ours. Corruption can be dealt with proper economic reforms and engaging people in electoral process. People who supported the Bill and Anna Hazare were profoundly misguided. The movement seemed to have struck a chord with people in light of current slew of scams. Hunger strikes are extremely dangerous and detrimental to a political democracy. I do not support hunger strikes, the Jan Lokpal bill, nor do I support corruption.