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shiningpath

shiningpath

Firstpost is thrilled to introduce Shining Path, an audience member who will begin blogging for us on a regular basis. In his own words: "Shiningpath had enough! 6451 days of debilitating non-work in corporate corridors, cubicles and windowless cabins. Chained to protocols, bound by hierarchies and surrounded by people with core competencies. So he hit the self-eject button, and found himself a nice hammock – from where he now watches the world , reads, attempts to write , gives a comment here, a commentary there...unsolicited mainly….and moonlights as a freelance business consultant in Bangalore.

A contract of employment— for our beloved MP, MLC, MLA…

The Backdrop:  Move over, all of you – it is time I wrest back control.

And while I am at it, I, the citizen of India, hereby solemnly declare that YOU are perilously close to getting fired.

Some of you will be re-hired in due course, but on my terms. In fact I am going to draw up a SLA (Service Level Agreement) for all of you to adhere to.

Can we clean up the political system? Screen grab of the Lok Sabha

For the back-drop, let us rewind to 1949, when a few of usdrafted a detailed guide-book, perhaps the heaviest such enabling tool-kit in the entire world. Words mostly, but the spirit was important too. You have forgotten both, it appears.

The preamble begins with the words, “We the people…..”

Try and focus hard now, for what follows seems to have eluded the not frighteningly significant powers of observations and comprehension you possess.

The preamble ends thus: “…do hereby adopt, enact and give to ourselves this constitution”. Do pay heed to the word “ourselves”. Quite distinct, don’t you think, from “yourselves”?

And then I appointed you, through some arcane mechanisms that a Parliamentary Democracy comes pre-fitted with, to run the affairs of this country. While I busied myself conducting, if you will, my own affairs. Some overt in a worldly, material and familial way; some, covert in an eye-brow raising way. Issues of hedonic importance that occasionally consume my being, take nothing away from the fact that the Constitution was drafted by me, for me.

Somewhere along the way, you got delusional and took to hallucinating that it was drafted by you, for you. And that you were supreme. Wrong. Wrong. And wrong again!

A little garden-variety psychoanalysis, and I can diagnose that you have developed illusions of grandeur and self-importance which may be explained by something that possibly happened to you when you were held upside down, and given a pat on your bum the first time you wailed. Were some of you, Sir/Madam, dropped on your head back then, intentionally or inadvertently?

What explains you telling me that you are supreme, and actually living the lie?

I, the citizen of this nation, who handed over the reins to you while I went about more important tasks like spending weekends trawling through Shopping Malls and reading informative newspaper reports titled “10 clues: he/she is NOT into you”, am supreme. Just because I blabber once in a while, entertain myself with research by statistically-challenged folks and pursue a few epicurean delights, does not dilute my stake in the affairs of this nation. Just last month, I did that all important thing. I punched the EVM. A most vicarious act this, the punching business.

Politics, I am realising, is too critical an activity to be left in the hands of some of you. Truth be told, I am to blame for the rot as well. For starters, I have been generalising and exaggerating a bit too much lately, unable to separate the chaff from, well, the chaff. Prone to squeezing all of you — wrongly — inside one little box labeled “dirty criminals masquerading as politicians”, but allow me that rant. It obviates the necessity for any cognitive dissonance. I will temper it a whisper - some scrupulous and supreme behaviour by you will, willy-nilly, nudge me in the direction of such tempering.

So do nudge. I am quite naïve and staggeringly nudge-able.

Continues on the next page

THE SLAs: Finally, here are the terms of your re-appointment. These supersede your winning mere elections.

You will be allowed to run this nation if you agree to the following key clauses of the SLA:
• None of you, with criminal cases pending against you, will fight for elections. Do not hide behind provisions of natural justice, and convenient terms like innocent-till-proven-guilty.

Party bosses, remember the maxim: if it talks like a criminal, looks like a criminal, moves like a criminal and feels like a criminal, then it most likely is a criminal. When in doubt, use your intuition.

• For goodness’ sake, stop filing false cases against one another. It does not help your case. Raja Bhaiya projects himself as a squeaky clean upholder of law, precisely because of this mutual admiration you folks keep expressing through various FIRs.

• I am a fair soul. Special Courts (at the level of a High Court) will be set up, where you can appeal against “false cases” filed against you. The decisions of this court would be appealable only to the Supreme Court. Timeline for such a process: 6 months.

• Any political party which, directly, or through its agents, is proven to have filed more than “x” false cases in a year, will be derecognised and deregistered for a period of at least “y” years. Where {y > (x+3)}. This is to dissuade you from flinging muck around; all that flinging business is clogging the already-clogged judicial machinery.

• You will consider serving a few breach of privilege notices to one another. Some of the venom you spew on each other…makes Kejriwal look like a gurgling infant. With a halo.

• When you declare your assets, and submit your affidavits, you will tell me nothing but the truth. You will not attempt to work your way around this clause by transferring properties and other assets to myriad drivers, uncles, son-in-laws and mistresses. And NO, de-notifying land selectively, with an avaricious or nepotistic intent is not such a good idea either.

• If you are discovered in bed with criminals, the contract stands null & void and out you go. Bed, gaddi, and wads of cash on the bedside table et al.

• Looking the other way, while natural resources like sand, stones and spectrum are illegally diverted to your family and friends, will compel me to greatly reduce your access to another natural resource — air. As you can well imagine, any act which leads to heavy breathing, or panting, will naturally be a pipe-dream for you thereafter. Ben Elton’s breathtaking play, “Gasping”, is mandatory reading for you.

• I will reject or recall you from your duties if your performance and/or credentials do not impress me much. Arguably, the process could be complex but don’t worry. I have undertaken many complex challenges in the past, including but not limited to, sending Wing Cmdr Rakesh Sharma into space. 28 years ago. Don’t you snicker now — so what if Soyuz T-11 was a Soviet spacecraft.

• While I am immensely entertained by your obnoxiously reflexive urge to issue statements followed by denials and then neatly rounded up by denying the denials, this has to end. Ditto on manic-depressive behaviour in Karnataka which culminates in shepherding some loyalists to resorts in Goa or Bangalore ever so often. It reflects badly on your verbal and political integrity.

• Finally a clause, violation of which won’t lead to a termination of the contract — will you consider putting some better mug-shots of yours on flex banners that dot the poles in my neighbourhood? Please indulge my aesthetic sensibilities - the soft-focus Madhuri, Aamir and Kajol shots of yore did have a quaint charm. Plus, those did not make children bawl and howl.

Sisyphean as the task appears to some, one day the boulder will sit atop the hill. And not roll back down.