It had to happen; it was not even a matter of
time before we were to witness yet another shame in the name of democracy!
It was a writing on the wall that we all had
read. Its precursor was made evident to us from time to time with the developments
Minister's Office refuses to answer RTI query on Robert Vadra citing
government has not given information on Narendra Modi's travel: RTI activist
Gandhi cites privacy, refuses to disclose info on I-T returns
No details of Sonia Gandhi's foreign tour under
Hindustan Times, November 09, 2011
Scratch a little and one would come across plenty
of such reports involving politicians across the party-lines!
And so it was not even the matter of time when
they decided to act. They had to act and they acted swiftly to blunt the
sharpness of the democratic weapon that had grown potentially dangerous for
them after a recent development.
This June (and
it is still this June only), the Central Information Commission (CIC) of
India ruled that the political parties were under purview of the ‘Right To
Information Act’ (RTI) by rightly exploiting the elements that define a ‘public authority’ in India. The
detailed report was a result of a prolonged hearing after the RTI activists
approached the CIC as the political parties denied information under the RTI
Act on funding related matters.
It is rare to see the Indian politicians standing
united in public’s eye on an issue of social concern. Though they are similar
under the skin, the vote-bank compulsions push them to act enemies to each
other whether the political opposition to an issue is relevant or totally
But there come certain developments when
politicians are forced to shed this ‘we
are different attitudes’; developments, when we see the ugly face of Indian
We witness the rare political unity on display whenever
there is an event that either leads to the personal benefits of the
parliamentarians like increasing salaries and perks frequently or events that might
threaten their absolute run of corruption like the Lokpal Bill or the CIC
decision to put the political parties under the ambit of the RTI Act.
And so, this June only, within few days of the
CIC ruling, reports say the government is preparing to bring an amendment to
the RTI Act or an ordinance to keep the political parties out of the RTI Act.
The changes would be effective retrospective and would overrun the June 3 CIC
According to the reports, the Department for
Personnel and Training has sent a draft of the proposed ordinance to the Law
Ministry. Sources say the government is going to change the definition of the ‘public authority’ in a way so as to
bring the political parties out of the RTI Act applicability.
Activists are saying they would fight it out in
the court while the political parties are all praise for the government on this
After all, how can the law of the land that
applies to the commoners, can apply to the superhuman Indian politicians?
Now, expect the ordinance or the amendment soon!
But where was this swiftness when thousands were
stranded and thousands had died in the disastrous Uttarakhand flash floods? The
scale of the disaster and the callous attitude of the politicians in relief and
rescue efforts tell us a sorry state of affairs, a blot on the humanity and a pathogen
for the democratic health of the country.
But can we question the politicians?
If they are acting so undemocratic, it is us
only who are allowing them to act so. Their every move has become so predictable
yet we continue making silly choices by electing them in the office, the powers
of which they manipulate to exploit us.