The Illusions of Democracy in a Third World Country

In a democracy you only have to remove the fig-leaf called the “vote” and you see the naked interests of power shamelessly parading before your eyes. It is this fig-leaf of democracy that separates India from Pakistan. In Pakistan the thieves decide the government and in fact they are the government. In India we elect them. Oh, for fig leaves!

Democracy makes sense only when the poor, the deprived and the homeless have an opportunity to come out of their poverty, deprivation and homelessness. That’s not what democracy in India is all about. It’s about crushing individual aspirations, abandoning common people to criminally inclined employers who treat employees like their possessions, robbing the young of emotional joys through a vicious system of body control, living in a system that brings out the beast in a man – that turns men into cold-blooded rapists and murderers, destroying the villages in a way that leaves the peasant weak and helpless to encounter the onslaught of globalization, putting decent people in jails because they know how to protest and they do it, giving people on the streets no chance to defend themselves except through this expensive piece of fiction called the ‘vote’ – this does not constitute a ‘real’ democracy in any sense of the term.

The democracy that we have and celebrate through the ‘vote’ hardly changes the reality on the ground. The Congress led-UPA is a liberal fascist coalition of parties and the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who is the darling of corporate India will one day have a chapter in his autobiography titled, “How to pimp your country for peanuts.” With the way the UPA conducted itself on the nuclear deal I’m convinced that this government is a pawn of the World Bank and the IMF not to mention the government of the United States. I have no respect for Manmohan Singh either as a Prime Minister or as an individual and I’m certain that the so-called “Gandhi” family that abused the name of the Mahatma is responsible in a big way for India’s poverty and backwardness.

The Kerala-West Bengal brand of Marxism is a sheer mockery of Marx and socialism. In India Marx should be spelt as “marks” and not Marx because we understand money better than we understand a human being. Those who claim to espouse Marxism and those who have made it a full-time job to be opposed to it – both are hypocrites. The Left in India is an upper class and upper caste mafia that keeps trying to fit reality into theory in which they are pretty good by the way. It should be the other way round in fact.

It is impossible to forget the role of the Indian media in this charade of a democracy. The news channels and newspapers are owned by rich and powerful people. No one expects the editors they choose to be George Orwells or Robert Fisks. Barring a few journalists with commitment to social and political change, the media is by and large the bastard child of corporate India.

Writing is an art form and a writer or a performer is a creative artist. How can you sell your soul to the devil and still be an artist! These are morally irreconcilable positions as far as I’m concerned. Yet we see the entire media reproducing untruths upon untruths. How can you lie so much and not be affected in your personal life! James Baldwin is right: “People pay for what they do, and still more for what they have allowed themselves to become. And they pay for it very simply; by the lives they lead.” The life they lead is a punishment in itself.

I don’t think those editors of newspapers and news channels that do everything possible to scuttle the voices of individuals and serve their corporate bosses can ever have a happy personal life. All the money and power in the world will not give a man either love or peace of mind. Fortunately they come from within because that is in the justice of nature and not of man. Like Shakespeare’s Macbeth the rich and their cronies have murdered sleep because their crimes will not let them rest for a single moment. They’re condemned to live lonely and loveless lives. With the spirit destroyed by the cancer of power how can the body be alive!

Stating an alternative is as important as stating the problem. Some form of communism is essential to this nation is what I’ve always maintained. We’re too poor and too dangerously divided with a small group of people having access to the wealth and resources of the nation while the majority is actually a ‘minority’ in this nation. That must change. We don’t need criminal employers who exploit their employees. We don’t need hotels. Turn them into hospitals. We need public transport. Not private vehicles that have turned the roads of the cities into a veritable nightmare. We don’t need westernization. We need to be ourselves. We need originality and not just mimicking lifestyles alien to our culture and history. We need local languages and local ways of doing things that ensure that people are not fighting a war within themselves like we’re doing at this point in time. We’ve to give dignity to every kind of work and person and end colonization in all its forms.

We need to empower women and put them in positions of responsibility at every level of governance which includes the police and the army and the courts. We can expect a more nonviolent society than the one we have. Politics should be effectively separated from power. In other words a politician is a servant of the people. Not their master. A sincere person would gladly take the position because it means service and not stealing from the masses. The crooks will look for other jobs in the mean time.

People have a right to live a life the way they think is good for them – which only means every other right is guaranteed to the ordinary person except the ‘right to exploitation’ which is not a right but a sickness of the body and soul. Development will be real because there won’t be prostitution on the streets. Society will be healthy as a whole and so will the social animal be likewise. “You may say that I’m a dreamer/But I’m not the only one” (John Lennon, Imagine).

Categories: Rethinking The World

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