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Indian politicians present and past

india Updated: Nov 25, 2006 14:35 IST

There is a vast difference between the breed of pre-Independence Day politicians and present day politicians.

Pre-Independence day politicians were fired by zest for freeing the country from the clutches of foreigners, while present day politicians are only interested in staying in power.

That is why the reform process for present-day India has moved slowly and emphasis is given to vote-banks and election tactics.

Even Manmohan Singh, who was once interested in affecting reforms, has fallen silent and seems to be more interested in staying in power like the rest of the politicians.

Social reforms are necessary but they have to follow economic reforms and particularly reforms in the agricultural sector. The worst sufferers in this country are the farmers and labourers. Unfortunately however, social reforms meant for farmers and farm labourers do not reach the intended target because of large scale corruption amongst the distibution machinery. This corruption has its roots in politics.

To get votes, the bigger netas in Delhi have to cater to the smaller netas at all levels. So all the benefits that social welfare schemes intend to bestow on the farmers and farm labourers are eaten up by these smaller netas with the connivance of bigger Netas.

So the need for the police reforms is very urgent. The reform has to be at the recruitment and training level. So much bribe is taken from a prospective candidate for a police job that he too wants to recover this bribe with interest by taking bribes at exorbitantly higher rates. The orientation and training of the policemen is such that they indulge in procedural wrangles to get bribes. They know that inefficiency would make them earn more money.

So, the need is to first reform our election system to a system of proportional representation, so that the netas do not seek seats for themselves but for the party. This will prevent indulgence in favouritism and nepotism.