The other day I saw a post by my friend on Facebook about surgical strikes conducted by the army during UPA regime and commented on the same. My friend immediately messaged me privately asking me not to comment on those type of posts. And during the course of our conversation, she mentioned that our country is becoming truly bipolar and people are somehow arguing with each other on everything under the sun.
What she said was indeed true. People from all walks of life have started speaking out. Whether they were speaking for or against something, people were not afraid to be heard. I still remember those days, when the only voice that can be heard was that of the people for something. Because if you were against something then repurcussions would follow. So people decided to hold their counsel and not involve themselves in the running of this country.
So what changed so drastically that the people of our country have started openly expressing their opinions? I mean the freedom of expression was always enshrined in our constitution. But very few people actually found their voice to rally against corruption or other social ills. How did this change happen then? Did it happen overnight? Have people woken up all of a sudden to express themselves?
The answer to all these questions is pretty simple. For the first time in Indian politics we have a government, which gives more importance to accountability rather than individual enhancement. Therefore it is no wonder that people from both sides of the fence have suddenly found their voice.
When you have a government which values freedom of the people, when you have a government which harps on accountability, when you have a government which learns from criticism, is when there is a true democracy and the voice of the people is heard.
So it is not surprising that people have found their voice against corruption, against violence and against Adharma. As I was telling my friend, the true victory of a democracy is when the voice of dissent can be heard and people don’t live in fear of state sanction. That is what has changed and that is why I believe that Indian Democracy is vibrant and kicking.
I still remember the days when to approach a cop with a complaint against a powerful person with contacts was a sure shot way to screw up your life. Why complaint, just the thought of opposing a local strongman would send shivers down our collective spines. Remember the many lives that were ruined because they went up against somebody strong.
Lets analyse the situation now. Most of the corrupt politicians are running from pillar to post to escape the long hand of law. People from all walks of life including some from the venerable Fourth Estate have relentlessly abused, humiliated and downright dragged through mud our Prime Minister, who was given a full majority for the first time in 30 years. Yet you don’t find retaliation against these abuses or the suspension of their fundamental rights like the erstwhile Governments felt it was their right to do.
When governments work for the benefit of the people and criticism of its workings is taken as a benchmark to improve rather than tarnish the reputation of the critic, is when Democracy is at its vibrant best and these 5 years have emphatically proven that. It is good that our country has become bipolar, it means people are willing to say what they feel. And it is good that we have a government, which wants to take 130 crore Indians with it on a path of development instead of its own cronies and chelas!
Finally, I would like to say that India’s ethos and culture have always encouraged informed debate and mature understanding. And that is what this Government has done so wonderfully well. It has made people sit up and notice. Whether its their vehement critics or ardent supporters this Government has ensured that the voice of the people is heard. And that my friends is why I say: Ache Din Aa Gaya Hain!