Monday, March 22, 2010

Strange land, strange happenings!

Incredible India!! How true is this statement these days for the 7th largest nation of the world! Where on one hand we still have majority of our population below the poverty line, on the other hand there are brazen displays of money in the higher strata’s of the society.

Dalit ki Beti, Mayawati, always attracts votes during elections by calling for dalits to bring her to power in order to come out of their current low status in the society. For many years, the political equation in U.P has been defined by Samajwadi and Bahujan Samaj Party which is a struggle between the dalits and the so-called higher class. It’s a comedy of sorts to see one party cancel out or declare illegal the laws made during the tenure of the other party. Out of two evils it is very hard to determine which is even slightly better.

In case of the present Mayawati government, money is spent in tunes of 7-figures to place statues of elephants and Kanshi Ram at prominent places. Such news come filtering out after regular intervals of time.

But this time Behenji took the entire political system as well as the entire nation by storm. A brazen display of a garland made of currency notes enveloping her during the anniversary celebrations of the party made the front news. Against the expectations of party members going on defensive mode the same incident was repeated 2 days later, albeit with a smaller garland.

Having been lived in U.P during the initial years of my life, I consider it as an integral party of who I am now. I am in a kind of a love-hate relationship with the place. It has been 12 years since I left the place with a bitter after taste in my mouth but I can’t still see any major changes which could have happened in the positive direction.

When the central government allocates funds for some sort of developmental activity, it disappears midway. A state with such huge opportunities in terms of land and labor has no huge industry to boast of. There are still huge levels of corruption, low literacy levels and major wastage of latent talent.

When the party members were questioned, they came out with the explanation that the garland was made out of the contributions from them rather than from other sources. But if they have the monetary strength to contribute money to this extent for their respected “Behenji”, then why hasn’t there been any visible development in this state. Why aren’t there any educational institutions to boast of apart from a stray IIM and a handful of engineering colleges? If they have this much money to collect why are still hordes of laborers and daily wage earners migrating to other places? Why is Lucknow, once considered a hub of Nawabi culture, now a witness to its death?

I just hope that these political parties answer these questions before U.P is also considered a lost cause and left without any hope.

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