Thursday, June 2, 2011

All The Queen's Poodles....

Here’s a tweet from Rajdeep Sardesai of CNN-IBN on June 1:
Face the nation at 10 pm: should unelected members of civil society have so much power in a democracy?” Excellent question Rajdeep and I will field that one for you. But before I do, let’s attend some other issues.

Kapil ‘zero loss’ Sibal, Pranab Mukherjee and others who rushed to mollify and appease Baba Ramdev yesterday did a bad job and weren’t quite prudent in their action. They could have just left it to our communist media. It’s only communist media persons who believe that ordinary people should be ‘powerless’ and almost be slaves to those who rule. There are quite a few other tweets from media persons that are just as interesting and enlightening and some are reproduced below: (Thanks to regular reader of this blog, Free_Verse)

NDTV - Maya Mirchandani:
If Baba Ramdev is seriously planning to fast against corruption why wait until saturday?Jo kal karey so aaj kar, aaj karey so ab ko kya hua?

I completely agree. And I hold the same view about NDTV. I would give them the same advice – Jo Kal Karey So Aaj Kar – Now then, I have held in a post of mine that it is time to End-It TV where NDTV is concerned. So why are they waiting? Why not do it soon enough? If they had an ear to the ground they would surely know what people think of NDTV. They should be running an NGO with their Greenathons and their Coca-Cola sponsored school programmes. Seriously, the last thing I would want is associate a sugar drink with even the poorest of children. That’s a great way to creating future addicts of junk drinks. Well, Coke can do what it likes. It needs explanation why a supposed news channel is involved. Barkha Dutt has been prudently relatively quiet on these events but here are a few more from the NDTV godown:

Pankaj Pachauri of NDTV Hindi:
- "Can the civil society please audit Baba Ramdev's campaign expenses like election commission tracks political parties?"
- Just got this on sms: Baba naheen ye dhongi hai, kaaledhan ka bhogi hai

Hmmm! Take that for self-righteousness. Pachauri can now join Digvijay Singh and Rahul Kanwal (Headlines Today) and audit Ramdev’s accounts. Since when does civil society audit anyone? It is a Congress led government at the centre and like I said in my post on ‘Erring Barkowitch…..’ the government can use all its forces – the CBDT, the ED, CBI, IB, RAW and everything at their command to investigate the funds and properties of Ramdev. And if they need more help, there is P. Chidambaram who can even authorise phone-taps on Ramdev. Ooops, wait, phone taps might inadvertently reveal some more goof ups by NDTV. I wonder which journalistic school Pachauri attended to imagine civil society auditing people or entities. They don’t need the Sibals and Mukherjees to target Ramdev. The media will do it for them.

Pallavi GhoshCNN-IBN:
- We all r meant to do what we do..ramdev is a grt yoga guru..surely he can't dictate laws..
- Ramdev has come on a chartered plane..has said he will give intv to all channels..what a contrast to hazare team!
- Diggy joins in says who's afraid of ramdev

Pallavi covers the events and issues of the Congress party for CNN-IBN. And she rightly says we all r meant to do what we do. Yeah right, who’s afraid of Ramdev? Well, I suppose you would rush to the airport to appease a yoga trainer to prove beyond any doubt you’re not afraid. And as for dictating laws I remember a certain programme on CNN-IBN by Rajdeep Sardesai where there were live tweets seeking to legalise lobbying. Yes, that’s right, tweets to support legalising lobbying. Those tweets were later proved to be spurious. Well relax, that is not dictating laws, is it? And as for flying around in chartered planes here is a piece from a letter by Subramanian Swamy  (Read the post: 2G Scam: Subramanian Swamy accusesSonia Gandhi family of getting loot)

"…..What requires your special attention is the mode of the travel, not by commercial airliners, but by jets provided by the corporate sector which itself is illegal under the DGCA Rules. I find that often Ms.Sonia Gandhi and family have traveled to Dubai and then traveled onwards on private jets provided by dubious Arab business interests to Europe….."

Well, Pallavi, the letter Swamy wrote to the PM on November 24, 2010 contains some serious charges, including Sonia Gandhi flying on private chartered jets. Did you or CNN-IBN report this accusation? Did any media channel report this? In contrast, Ramdev is not flying around secretly. His aircraft and flight was there for all of you to grab videos of.

So now let’s get back to Rajdeep Sardesai’s tweet about whether unelected members of civil society should have so much power in society. Ever heard this line Rajdeep – ‘We the people…’ or is that just a programme on your ex-channel? On ‘Face the nation- CNN-IBN’ on June 1, there were three questions by my favourite TV anchor, Sagarika Ghose. Here goes Ghose:

Are unelected people seeking too much power?
Is Ramdev misusing people’s faith?
Are citizen groups taking shortcut to power?

The concoction of questions itself is a brazen attempt to ridicule Ramdev’s movement. The panelists on the programme – Madhu Kishwar, Arun Bhatia and Kiran Bedi were mostly unanimous in supporting citizens’ right to undertake such movements so that was a bit of a disappointment for CNN-IBN.And still Sagarika maintained the 'debate' will go on! Nothing wrong in that.

I wonder if our scholarly journalists ever heard the line ‘Power to the people’! Almost all civil rights movements in the 60s and 70s were brought about by people movement. The famous civil rights movement of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is referred to as a movement that brings power to the people. John Lennon, Beatle and peace activist, even composed a song “Power to the people”. And yet, our clever media crooks paint any civil movement as lust for power, misusing people’s faith, question their integrity, accuse them of illegitimate wealth and all this to suggest only those in the government or those who are elected have the right to have power. These people need to go back to school and refresh their understanding of democracy.

Hang on, if you thought that the media is seriously questioning the Hazares and the Ramdevs you are terribly wrong. They have a big fear. The fear that these johnies are encroaching on the territory that the media thought was their own turf. Yes indeed, the media believes they are the only ones who should have the power to influence opinions, course of events and the national discourse. So fake opinion polls, fake exit polls, spurious panels on their debates, paid news, coining various political terms, and outright bias in news reporting was a domain they thought was exclusive to the media. Now they have these johny-come-latelys taking over their territory. That’s what worries our media. Ramdev does not need the media, the media needs him. Ramdev has grown his empire without any help from the media and he can sustain it without them. Not just that, he has enough resources to run his own channel and lay out his own propaganda. That is really what irks and worries our media. That Kalaignar TV and Sun TV have reportedly got huge funds from the government’s misdeeds is now out in the open. Why shouldn’t we believe that all the other media outlets have also got their share of the cow-dung pie?These seven years have been a joyride for them, why would they want it to stop?

Governments should FEAR people and not the other way around. Learn that, Rajdeep Sardesai!

Power to the people doesn’t simply mean the right to elect someone to a parliament. It means the power to also influence the course of a nation, its policies and its laws. The Congress is in a soup. All the queen’s poodles may not be able to put the kingdom back together. Well, it wasn’t their job in the first place. The media took it upon themselves to put Humpty Dumpty back on the wall. FAIL !


  1. ndtv and CnnIbn are now fighting for their number 1 position at 10 JP.Both these channels have lost their credibility which is clear from the TRP figures.
    Baba has stated that he has no objection if his accounts are audited by any agency of the govt.
    And yes, Is MMS elected Representative of people?

  2. Hey Ravinar,
    Glad I could provide some fodder for your posts. You have responded aptly to these self-righteous, corrupt, so-called journos. They think they can make or break Baba Ramdev, all the while forgetting that Aastha TV probably has greater TRPs than all news channels combined.

    ALSO, the biggest CONTRAST and IRONY in news channels suddenly wanting to discuss the propriety in civil society members dictating terms to the legislature and executive, is that NONE of them have so much as QUESTIONED the legality and propriety of the DEMON called NATIONAL ADVISORY COUNCIL, which is full of pseudo activists of dubious backgrounds and intentions. There has not been one show in these channels calling into question the role of this extra-constitutional body, accountable to none and its antecedents verified by none.

    Now, journos suddenly want to discuss civil society overreaching their domain, but want to restrict this discussion to Ramdev, who is not even asking for a joint drafting committee or anything similar to be set up, as in the case of Janlokpal agitation.

    Seriously, these loser paid media people have to be really cut off from reality to be able to think that their smear campaign is going to, in any manner, dent Ramdev's following.

  3. Hey,

    You may add this link also in your post where you talk about Sonia Gandhi's unscrupulous flights :

  4. More skulduggery:

    Pallavi Ghose - CNNIBN, now sees a sinister conspiracy in the arrangements made at ramlila maidan. According to her, unless people drop by at the venue unannounced and spontaneously (a la Tahrir Square), it does not amount to a "people's movement". It doesn't matter that people have chosen to hear what Ramdev has to say over the past two years, understood his Movement and the rationale behind it and made and informed choice to support him. She also seems to suffer from some illusions regarding the exact cause of Irom Sharmila's fast. But when have these journalists had anything but mediocre intelligence? Anyway, this is her rant:

    - Trishuls, rss cadre, water proof pandal, coolers, chilled water..ramdev's plush satyagraha

    - Wish those who constantly tweet in defence of ramdev wld step out and brave the heat in ramlila

    - The reason subodh kant sahay chosen to negotiate with ramdev is that as food processing min he has approved ramdev's several food plants

    - Will hazare&ramdev fight for irom sharmila? Isn't her fight a fight against corruption?

    - Ramdev's satyagraha is v kind to journos..he has set up a media centre..laptops, printers, chilled water..!

    - @seemagoswami point I am driving at is that how shrewdly he has planned it..its not therefore a spontaneous people's movt

    -50 bed ICU,200 docs,3 media centre, 5 LED screen with night vision,850 fans+coolers,500 water taps..frugal satyagraha?

    Sagarika Ghose - CNNIBN, has developed a sudden bout of urgency in discussion the black money issue. It din't matter that her channel devoted the most minuscule amount of air time in discussing Hasan Ali, possibly our biggest tax evader ever, and his dubious but verifiable links with Ahmad Patel and Sonia Gandhi. And also, more recently, Renuka Choudhary. Whiule she makes half-decent suggestions, the point is what was stopping her from raising this issue on her 'esteemed channel' before Baba Ramdev raised it? And when he does, you grudge him and belittle him? What did SHE contribute towards raising awareness on black money issue? Here are her frantic calls 'debate and discussion and reform' away from Baba Ramdev:

    - Can black money simply be brought back by going on hunger strike? Or systemic currency reform needed so rich stop parking money abroad

    - would be interested to know what amounts of money are actually parked in tax havens..govt's list doesn't show humungous amounts

    - Untaxed foreign exchange hidden abroad is a consequence of exchange controls on rupee..experts say only fwd is to make rupee a hard currency

    - Guess hunger strikes are easier than changes to India's monetary and fiscal policies...

    - We need a solid informed debate on currency and fiscal reform. Not emotional venting on Twitter about black money..

    - Real issue of black money shd concern us. need to understand why it happens..a bash-the rich-and-UPA slogan.will achieve little.

    - The govt shd look into why untaxed foreign exchange is hidden abroad, not just penalise those who do it. Reform is urgently needed

    - we need to stop it happening. for that we need to take substantive steps, not just placate baba

    Pankaj Pachauri continues to substitue for Digvijay Singh

    - Questioning Baba gets you less #hate-Tweets than questioning Modi. He has not reached that level of popularity yet. But the govt is trying.

    - @shuksrpcol Exactly, so why the moral outrage? Listed companies get audited each Quarter. Politicians each 5 years. And Babas never!


    These are just pre-emptive strikes. Abhi to fast shuru bhi nahi hua. I am sure a CD is on its way.

  5. @ Free_Verse

    LOL! I believe if the list of black money hoarders gets released it will include a lot of media persons. So it's not surprising that they are on a witch-hunt here...

  6. @Free Verse

    In my view, these journalists are sick and crap!

    Well, all people who attend Ramdev's Shivir are well aware of the facilities provided to common people!

    Do these journalists expect ramdev to see people go through numerous difficulties and discomforts for joining his movement?

    I infact am proud ramdev has perfectly planned this event, organized it to perfectiona and made sure all facilities are is very logical... with such unforgiving summer.. he has shown what it needs to be a well organized and visionary leader...

    It only shows what a organizer he is! We need such leaders not the one like CONgress... they could not even provide proper facilities to their own party workers! LOL!! how do you expect them to think about the common citizens!

  7. Oh, PIGvijay Singh was not all quiet after all.

    MORADABAD (UP): Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh has attacked Baba Ramdev, who has threatened to go on an agitation on the issue of corruption, dubbing him more of a businessman than a 'sanyasi'.

    "Even to teach yoga, he charges Rs 50,000 from those who sit in the front seats, Rs 30,000 for the backseat and Rs 1000 for the last seat. What else is this?" he said addressing a meeting.

    The Congress general secretary said the party was not scared of Ramdev and is holding discussions with him.

    "If Congress was scared, Ramdev would have been put behind bars. There is no fear that is why he is out in the open and there are discussions with him," he said.

  8. Ravinar, sorry for bombarding your post with twitter stories but interactions with dalal journos on Twitter today revolving around Ramdev fast give an amazing insight into their utter moral and intellectual bankruptcy!!

    So, one enlightened twitterati decided to probe further into the flurry of suggestions for financial reform that Ms. Ghose has been rambling on about since morning. Conversation follows:

    sagarikaghose : Can black money simply be brought back by going on hunger strike? Or systemic currency reform needed so rich stop parking money abroad
    3 hours ago

    malviyamit (Amit Malviya)
    @sagarikaghose Currency reform ? What is that ?
    3 hours ago

    @malviyamit argument is rupeewill have to be made into a hard currency. for that india will have to get its fiscal deficit etc in check
    3 hours ago

    @sagarikaghose Any link or note you could point me to. Would love to read more. Sounds like a fascinating concept in context of black money.
    3 hours ago

    @malviyamit are the typical Twitter combination of illiterate and abusive..
    3 hours ago
    in reply to ↑

    @sagarikaghose Err.. Really ? Why don't you just admit you don't know instead of mouthing platitudes ?

  9. Chaandi SaksenaJune 02, 2011 4:07 PM

    Yes, watched several channels questioning the rights of civil society to take over governance. One sycophant on Headlines Today whose last name happens to be Bhushan as well kept branding the Ramdev et Hazare movements as 'motivated', the motivation being to get rid of the current sordid Congress so-called government. Like that's a bad thing! And of course all this was a conspiracy of the BJP and the 'saffron brigade' to destabilize the government and hence it was bad. Yeah right, destabilizing the current monsters who call themselves the government is the worst of all sins. Looting the country is fine! This creep of a sycophant who must've been paid a miniscule portion of the loot into his own account in the Cayman's of course conspicously failed to talk about the current looting on a massive scale and to classify it as good/bad/ugly. If I was the person who doled out money to these paid sycophants to represent the indefensible government, I'd have paid him zero for being so obviously a paid stooge. At least, for the benefit of appearing to be an objective journalist, he could have said a sentence condemning corruption and then gone on to put forth his illogical defence!
    Which brings me to another pathetic paid stooge posing as a journalist---Vinod Sharma. How do these sickos live with themselves?

  10. Chaandi SaksenaJune 02, 2011 4:27 PM

    Yes, and a day before, we had that clown of a woman called Renuka Choydhary appearing on the Times Now debate---rolling her eyes and making snide remarks as Kiran Bedi spoke. As per Ms. Choudhary, she hates 'such a pessimistic view' of India. Someone should've asked her that if things are so hunky dory, the Govt has nothing to hide and should promptly pass a Lokpal bill that empowers prosecution of anyone and everyone from PM to the lowest bureacrat. If India has progressed so highly as the over wellfed Ms. Choudhary claims, then no one need worry about such a bill. Of course, all Arnab Goswami did was grin sheepishly. Sometimes he is highly adversial and at other times he suddenly loses his voice. The other clown on the debate was Amar Singh, so it was obviously a free for all.
    Yes, Ms. Chowdhury, you can afford to have an optimistic view when crores from the loot is being passed on to you through Hasan Ali and you remain unaccountable. All you have to do in return is appear on some show and utter gibberish that even you yourself don't believe as obvious from your face. So, please keep the opitmism for your personal illgotten fortune and let the sane and non-greedy individuals have concern for the state of the polity.

  11. @Chaandi Saksen
    Well put. Corrupt politicians and dalal journos - there cannot be a more shameless breed than these in India

  12. The saga of the FAKE TWITTER ACCOUNT @sfd1234 (most probably an NDTV creation), aimed at tarnishing Baba Ramdev's image

  13. Amidst a sea of openly shameless and corrupt journos, there are SOME who at least portray a reasonable and sensible stand, without taking openly biased and extreme views.

    Gaurav Sawant of Headlines Today:

    - Let elected representatives deliver.when they fail to govern,#annahazare & #babaramdev take centrestage.Wakeup call 4 netas

    - people have been let down by elected netas both Govt & opposition. Civil society filling up the vaccum. Ask the aam admi

    - 1.declare black money in foreign banks national asset.2.Bring back money stashed3. Punishment upto death 4 corruption.whats unreasonable?

    - Those with money stashed in banks abroad most rattled by #BabaRamdev's movement?From politics to Bollywood those with 'corrupt' links upset?

    - cosy club RT @umeshparab and plz dont forget to add few media houses too @gauravcsawant #Ramdev

    At least he is trying to reflect the sentiments of the common people and understand their disgust at the widespread corruption. These efforts must be appreciated. Unfortunately, such journalists are not "big-wigs" and the likes of Sagarika, Barkha, Rajdeep have appropriated the lead roles for themselves.

  14. Now, SHAH RUKH KHAN, reeling under the strain from his cozy relationship with 2G scam accused Karim Morani, goes ahead to slam Baba Ramdev and question his motives. Point to introspect: are the celebrities that we have put on such a high pedestal worthy of such respect?

    Ramdev's agitation politically motivated: SRK

    Indore: Bollywood actor Shahrukh Khan on Thursday said that Baba Ramdev's proposed hunger strike against corruption and repatriation of black money stashed in foreign banks, is politically motivated and he would not support the agitation.
    "I will not support him...he's got an soon one becomes a leader...he resorts to such kind of agitation," Shahrukh told reporters at the release of a theatrical trailer of his upcoming flick 'Ra.One'.
    "One should do what is appropriate for him or her. If anyone is trying to slip into the shoes of a politician then that is not the right way to do it.," he said appealing to the youths to not fall prey to corruption. In the background of the 2G scam and related issues, the actor said current instances of corruption in public life have saddened him.

    PS - Ravinar, sorry for practically spamming your page - guess I should start a blog of my own :)

  15. @ Free_Verse

    Hahahhahaa! No, its not spam at all. Remember, there are others that also read your comments on related topics. So always welcome. Of course, with your immense interest on these topics you would do well with a blog. If you want to contribute on this blog as an author, that too is welcome...


  16. While we rightly criticize the rotten media (as rotten as the Congress and the Commies if not more), we must retain our sanity and restrict the tendencies in some of the self-appointed torch-bearers of the civil-society to arrogate to themselves an aura of infallibility.

    We have repeatedly felt that both Anna and Baba have been exhibiting Mohandasian (Gandhian) traits of treating themselves above all scrutiny. That may be good, but they need to exercise restraint too.

    We quote from our one of earlier post.

    Begin Quote:

    Here we pose a simple question:

    Which is better: Discuss, debate, conclude and then communicate the conclusion OR decide and then offer explanations while maintaining a rigid stance?

    Our answer: A sane way is the former, and typical Mohandasian way is the latter.

    Recall that we had commented that if this committee was a committee to form the would be in-charge committee, it would have been much less of a controversy. Why do these leaders not choose the sane way? Why do they choose stupidity over sanity? Simply, because Mohandasians are not bothered about all these details,;for they claim to be super-wise persons! And you see all leaders smalltime or big-time are scurrying to find a niche place for themselves where they can stake claim to super-wisdom!

    Again, not to sound as if we are singling out Anna, we re-iterate that this imbecility has, unfortunately, become our national character. We need to get rid of this! Also, not to state that super-wisdom is impossible. There have been persons of extra-ordinary wisdom who could be thought of as super-wise; however they are few and far between. Further, they themselves hardly ever claim or impose such claims on others. So we need to devise and honor procedures meant for and practiced by ordinary people!

    Thus, our message to the people is:

    Look, observe and understand the follies of such nature. You can love, respect and even follow whichever leader you wish to, including Anna, Baba, and so on; however, force them to shun their insane, dumb-fuck ways. For insanity will beget more insanity, and dumb-fuckery will beget even more dumb-fuckery!

    Let the skeletal framework be: Think, act and learn; and not Act, explain and repent!

    End Quote.

  17. @samAlochaka

    I completely agree with you. Fasting unto death is NO WAY TO USHER IN LEGISLATIVE changes in a modern democracy (even a faulty one like India) with elected representatives.

    Though I was delighted with thepublic resposne that Anna Hazare received (indicating that people CARE about probity in public life), I did not really support their demand for Janlokpal on their terms. It is naive to want to create a superhuman Lokpal so as to overcome the shortcomings of various other institutions. Lokpal should be part of a LARGER OVERHAUL of the entire system – including electoral reforms, independent central investigating body etc.

    Ultimately, the nature of political class decides whether we have a clean system or not. Today, the Congress party which barely received 20% of votes by 50% of the population that was voting in the first place, is plundering our nation. Why did the country vote for the party again when it was clear (1) Sonia Gandhi was the real power behind MMS and had never made so much as a TV appearance for an interview – no accountability to people (2) 2G scam was out in public (3) cash4votes was in public. What is it about being slave to a dynasty that we love so much?

    The example of Gujarat has shown that ultimately, it is the nature of the top political class that determines an overall corruption-free system. One incorruptible top man in Gujarat has ensured that even the lowest level govt. clerk hesitates to take a bribe. The Gandhi family was embroiled in the Bofors scam – why do we continue to vote for them? With such choices, do we deserve any better than the current government? The Congress has been in power for more than half a century. It’s foolish to think that when we allow a single party to dominate, it will not spread its tentacles in all our democratic institutions to perpetuate its power. Indira Gandhi destroyed our civil services. Sonia Gandhi has sytematically destroyed our media, investigative bodies and anti-corruption agencies.

    Baba Ramdev,again, is working for a good cause and with good intentions, but black money and parallel economy are complex problems that cannot be solved in a jiffy.

    I think what people are FED UP of today is OVERWHELMING, UNPRECEDENTED corruption and COMPLETE INACTION. But what we all forget is that unless we elect honest, upright people as our elected representatives, no single-man institution can provide a guarantee against corrupt and unethical practices. A crooked politician will always loopholes to overcome such checks. The idea is to not elect a crooked politician in the first place. For me, a reasonable Indian man should think like this ----> 55 years of Congress rule, 80% population earning less than Rs. 20 a day. All this while other Asian countries, including China have zoomed past us in economic development and uplifting their masses. Now, people like to blame the "SYSTEM" but when a single party (moreover, a single family) has captured the system for so long, can you continue to blame the system with "politicizing" it (in media's words).

    ANYWAY, I think the point of Ravinar's post and our discussion here was the start contrast in the attitude of the media in dealing with the various "social" elements who seemingly want to usurp legislative powers:

    (1) NAC - No questions raised for the past 7 years

    (2) Anna Hazare - People's movement! India's Tahrir square! India's war against corruption!

    (3) Baba Ramdev - What is his credibility? Should sadhus and babas enter politics? Should social activists be allowed take on governmental functions? Does he have a political agenda?

    You get the drift.

  18. should read: can you continue to blame the system WITHOUT "politicizing" it (in media's words).

  19. Rajdeep Sardesai's statements prove what we have been talking about here:

    - no issues with ramdev or his movement, but when his supporters compare him to mahatma or vivekananda, have a problem

    - no issues with ramdev's jet-setting life, but when you have 1100 crores, do you still need public money for a satyagraha?

    - instead of money for a high profile satyagraha, why not collect money to stop farmer suicides?

    - one day, ramdev targets colas, then homosexuality, tea/coffee, then black money, now english language too.

    This statements are not only misrepresenting facts, but also misleading in their intent. What has farmers suicides got to do with black money? Is it Ramdev's job to eradicate farmers' suicide or the govts? Rajdeep has been STUCK ON Rs. 1100 crore SAMPATTI of Ramdev liks a TAPE RECORDER since yesterday. Did he ever ask what the sampatti us of NAC members? Also, who here thinks he is unaware that this money belongs to Ramdev's trust (which, by virtue of its existence, get audited) and not him personally? It's not his money that he can use it as he wishes. Jet-setting lifestyle? Traveling thousands of kilometeres for 2 years to meet the masses is jet-setting lifestyle? This is precisely what Gandhiji did after landing in India (not comparing the two people, but situations). So Gandhi was a jet-setter? Again, Ramdev has not 'targetted' the English language. He has asked for technical courses to also be imparted in vernacular languages. Delhi's elite is truly rattled. So are Delhi's fraud social activists, whose careers will be ruined if activism is taken up by the likes of Ramdev.

  20. Ramdev and Hazare have massive support. This is what is meant by advocacy. The issues are so important that they gathered country-wide support. Advocacy to influence policy is not a new trend...After all, Hazare and Ramdev are not planning to make the laws themselves...just pressurizing the government to draft the bill and pass these laws. Just because this time the advocacy efforts have become mainstream, does not mean they are undemocratic or trying to replace democratic processes. Systemic failures are obvious to the common man. Hence, advocacy on a massive scale has been resorted to.
    Moreover, currently, Hazare and Ramdev are not in a race for any public office. If they do get into such a race, they should definitely be open to scrutiny. As of now, who leads the movement is immaterial. It is the cause that is worthy and important.

    Please read my related blog on this.

  21. @Free-Verse

    All points well taken. And my point was (and is) that as we get deeper into the impending turmoil we need to keep ourselves clear-sighted.

    Regarding Media, well they are competing amongst themselves in setting lower and lower standards! Or should we say they are falling into a bottomless pit?

    Fight against corruption is surely necessary, but guarding against the fight itself becoming corrupt is also necessary! And thus the quote: Who watches the watchmen?


    Any public persons must be open to public scrutiny even when they are not holding office. Anna and Baba are assuming leadership roles in this fight, so they have to be open to scrutiny. Otherwise they will become Mohandases (Gandhi) and soon end up functioning like emotional-blackmailers of the nation.

    Your point regarding the "worthy and important cause" is so typical of elementary follies. For decades regarding corruption various leaders have been saying "When the house is on fire there is no time". VP Singh said so. Manmohan himself said so. And what is the outcome? The fire grows bigger and bigger! So if there is to be genuine fight against corruption, it does have to address all these aspects as well.

    And regarding Congress, yesterday Digvijay Singh made a startling revelation which effectively meant: When the Congress gets scared it puts innocent people behind bars!

    So expect a lot of drama in the near future.

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