I am a great fan of Jawaharlal Nehru, he was India’s first prime minister, a die-hard nationalist and an atheist. While I was reading his ‘The Discovery of India‘ something caught my eye.
Now, this requires some context. This was around 1935 when the British had passed the ‘Government of India Act‘, which put in place ministers from the Indian National Congress in some positions of power but still under the oppressive reign of British Governors and the Viceroy. These were the days when they fought against the tyrannical rule of imperialism, people bled for democracy and freedom. The whole nation believed that Democracy can change their fate; they believed in Leaders; they believed it was the answer. In a country of hundred religions, where people killed each other in the name of god, an atheist became the first democratically elected Prime Minister! That was the respect and devotion that people had for politicians and politics.
Populist politics, Caste vote, violent coercion of voters, instigation of religious riots, walkouts from the parliament sessions which is paid for by taxes, corruption, scams and things that on mention makes you shudder in disgust; I’ve spent the larger part of my life in the 21st century and all this seems too familiar now , a very sad realization indeed. When was the last time you heard an intelligent and educated youth talk good about politics? The mere mention of the word brings a feeling of repugnance to the listener. Why has this happened? Why wouldn’t this happen? I’ve never known a politician whom i can adore, whose honor i am willing to defend.
I am deeply disturbed and saddened by this. We don’t understand the domino effect of this disbelief. The general contempt and aversion that the people hold towards the politicians echo across the spectrum of governance. People trust NGOs more that the governments they voted for; and when the faith in the government falls, people’s faith in the currency falls, people even stop exercising their right to vote. People lose faith in democracy! It is easy to be is heartened and to become a cynic; and as of now we are not short of reasons to lose hope.
I love this country and its people, I want us to do great things. I want a politician who defies the current meaning of the word. I want somebody to love and trust. I want a secular non-partisan idealist. I want to believe that the government is good again. I want to be a nationalist. Give me hope!
I wanna believe in democracy again!
I want to be a Patriot!