OROP: No country for the soldier

It has been a politically surcharged week. Has India got its leader yet? No, is the blunt answer. The emphasis of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who spoke from the ramparts of the Red Fort was on financial inclusion, and “Team India”. This was a prime minister who was consolidating on his delivery mechanism, and was out to send a subtle message against the opposition. 

The prime minister gave a lot of numbers on financial inclusion. As far as the subject of service delivery is concerned; the government is creating a  conducive climate. The early indicators were there for all to see with respect to the Neem Urea scheme, cutting down on the LPG subsidy, money received from various auctions of spectrum, coal and FM.

As far as the veterans are concerned these were two sad days. The assault on military veterans by the Delhi Police reminded one of the “Bonus War”. The incident took place on 28th July 1932, after police action against protesting veterans who were promised their dues. 

Witnesses later recollected, “After this the American flag means nothing to me”. The current prime minister, who speaks of deadlines and pats himself on the back, has let the community of armed forces veterans down. Tempers within the armed forces are only going to rise further. The inaction on the part of the prime minister has also ensured that the distance between the bureaucracy and the defence forces grows as each day passes. 

The events in the Indian Parliament need our full attention. We have the likes of Shashi Tharoor who can storm Oxford and bring the nation laurels, yet cannot speak up in the Parliament due to political constraints. The answer lies in the image that we as a nation see constantly on the television. 

The political class has nothing but personal vendetta and a need for power on their minds. They have nothing new on the agenda. Till date the BJP has not come out with anything new by way of legislative bills  and the Congress is backtracking on its own reform agenda, the nation it seems is held to ransom for personal battles which are the order of the day. 

What exactly is the root cause of the problem? Is it dynastic rule or too much politics and government intervention in all spheres of life, or is it lack of leadership and failing institutions, or a combination of all?  

The root cause of this malaise is the unprincipled politics practiced by all political parties, where it seems, party interests, are greater than national interests. Then there is the habit of taking the law into one’s own hands to supplant tardy governance with a Robin Hood type image as displayed by the Aam Aadmi Party. The rule of law is being gradually eroded and the common man suffers as a result. 

It is a fact that the people by and large do not trust the political class who control the executive as well. Thus the executive and the legislative arms of the government are seen as anti-people, yet a government job is valued for the power that emanates from it and the social security that it provides to an individual. 

The Indian nation supposedly respects the Indian Army and poll after poll says they are the most trusted and cleanest organisation in the nation. Despite such public opinion, the Army lacks equipment, faces <g data-gr-id="92">shortage</g> of officers and their veterans are on a relay hunger strike even after the prime minister in person on Independence Day promised them one rank one pension.    

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