Indian Democracy is in Danger !

I was reading an article in Deccan Chronicle , searching the reason why Loksatta (a promising party) member lost the seat in Kovvuru, AP. It was describing how other parties were pumping cash for votes. The sane people will describe it as corrupt political tactics.

Let’s analyze how, giving cash to voters, can be termed as a corrupt practice. Corruption means, Improper and unlawful conduct intended to secure a benefit for oneself or another. The act needs to be deemed as immoral, illegal and unethical.

The person who is giving cash to the voter is not gaining anything in person. It is not guaranteed that the voter will vote for him. Instead he is justifying that he is doing a moral act by giving money to the needy person, without expecting anything in return.

Legally there is no contract binding the voter to vote for him. He may argue that he is giving money on behalf of the party and not asking to vote any particular candidate. According to the law, “Acceptance of money to vote for a candidate is a corrupt practice of bribery under Section 123 (1) of R. P. Act, 1951. It is also an offence under section 171-B of Indian Penal Code and is punishable with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year or with fine or both.” Did you notice the “candidate” and not the “Party”.

Giving or distributing money is not unethical. It happens every day. It is similar to the bidding process for government contracts. Each party is bidding to form a government. These parties are paying money to secure the tenders. The voters think that these governments are a useless piece of junk and never benefitted anybody. After the formation of the government, the citizens are back to their usual business, fighting for survival on their own. So these voters came up with an ingenious solution,” trading futures”. They converted their ‘votes” into “future stock”. They tapped the market demand. They are selling their “futures” to these politicians and pocketing the cash. The life-cycle of these stocks is five years and then expires. So who benefitted – the voters who sold the “futures”. Is trading immoral?

Currently, these voters know that the Governments only bother for the development in cities. Who cares for rural development? Unfortunately, it is true. More than 80% of the budget has nothing to do with rural development. But still, more than 80% of the voters, who cast their votes, are from rural areas. What a paradox?

In the world of democracy, voting right is the most important civil right to have for any citizen. It is the most important weapon. If it is sold or not exercised with sanity then it tells that something is not right with the citizens or the democratic structure itself. The very Democracy itself is in danger.

It seems that we have a bigger problem than what we think of. I don’t know what it should be called. But if we do not change this model, will continue to remain in this perpetual cycle of dreaming a “Dream government” in India and keep creating more “slums” in catching this “Indian Dream”.

|| namo Bhartam, namo sanskritam ||

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