June 1, 2011

Lokpal, Baba Ramdev, Anna Hazare and the government

The following developments have taken place in the last few days:
  • PM says, Lokpal Bill will be placed in Parliament before the deadline of June 30.
  • Governement develops cold feet on including PM, judiciary, even MPs uner the purview of Lokpal. Hazare’s team in the drafting committee shows unhappiness.
  • Government is seeking views of political parties and states on the proposed Lokpal Bill.
  • Baba Ramdev wonders how PM and judiciary can be included in the Bill.
  • Govrnment has set up two committees to assess money stacked by Indians in foreign banks and find ways to tackle black money.
  • Government's game: Anna Hazare vs Baba Ramdev
  • Baba Ramdev sticks to his fast threat.
What does a common man make out of it all? Prima facie, the government is not serious about tackling corruption in a big way, perhaps apprehending political problems. It also does not want to take on higher judiciary as it is fighting many sensitive cases in the Supreme Court. It does not want to annoy politicians in general as it will be the pliable MPs from any party who may come to its rescue when it is in trouble. So, it is playing politics with the two prominent camps – under Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev.

Baba Ramdev seems to be a man with a mission to clean India of its ailments – biological as well as social-political. But he is impetuous, he is easy to play into the hands of state players, he is one-man institution without an internal system for deliberating on issues, and he speaks too much before TV cameras. If you play into others’ hands, you tend to lose your purity of purpose and purity of action. You have already fallen prey to others’ machinations before you realize your mistakes. Baba does not know this, and nobody is in a position to tell it to Baba.

The government fears Baba Ramdev more than Anna, and has opened many channels of diplomacy on him, because of his huge fan-following. But if Baba does not reform his ways, he will be weakening the momentum created by Anna’s fast against corruption, and his own mission to reform the society and politics will fritter away. This is what the government wants and all corrupt bigwigs want.

The top agenda of Hazare camp right now should be to make Baba Ramdev see the game behind the government opportunistically agreeing to his demands and propping him up. Ironically, right now this assumes more significance than the fight against corruption.

Earlier, we carried a post exposing how Ambedkar was used to weaken Hazare's movement.


  1. I support Baba Ramdev. But I do not think it will serve any prpose in the case of money lying with overseas banks. I do not think that those funds are black money. They prefer to deposit in foreign banks since such countries give them trustworthy service. We should create our own places of such trust and attract such funds for our country. For example convert one island in Anfdaman as tax free and have a bank there for attracting funds and do not ask sources and identities. Do not disclose to the world the ownerships and use such funds for our development. Give the owner such trustworthy guarenties that the funds are safe. Huge iunclaimed funds are with Swiss banks and who get the benefits? baba should convert the hearts of our Covt People to this direction.

  2. I agree, Mirza, but Baba defeated his own grand scheme with his bravado. Hope, he keeps mum for some time and then raises these issues again.