Monday, January 20, 2014

The Chief Minister And His Men&Women

Vasu Reddy From Chicago
vasureddy@aol.com

The power of office is seldom mistaken for lack of confidence or opportunity to do good, specially if you are the chief minister of the nation's capital. You as the head of the government and your ministers (men and women) are bestowed the power to represent the people and their interests as long as you hold the office. When you represent the nation's capital and depending on who is in control at the center, the power that comes with the office also directly goes either hand-in-glove or head-butting with the government.

The young party and government of AAP in New Delhi although in power because of support from INC (who was its main target to form the AAP and contest and defeat in Delhi), the party quickly tried to make good work on its promises in its election manifesto. The cut in the electricity bill, the free water supply (to a limit) and fighting corruption, holding public audiences, hotline for complaints and generally populist ideology that is near to people's issues and problems.

From the stunning defeat of the incumbent party and its long standing CM, the AAP started off with a bang and a promise of addressing its self described manifesto, and in the first few days did act quickly on the popular and ever in demand items of water and power, and also start its main agenda to stop (at least try to) corruption. In its best judgment, taking the steps to deal with public issues (AAP stands for common man's party) AAP demonstrated the better judgment in not ignoring how and why it got into power. As commendable as it is to follow-up on election promises, the party started off with a bang in making good on its bread and butter issues.

Along with its aggression on implementation of its core promises and also ideals, the party also immediately has faced a few problems;

  • The other parties including its support base INC immediately started to criticize the actions, and specially every single action taken by the AAP are in great difference to the old practices of the political parties of the nation.
  • The part it self displaying conflict and lack of discipline and coordination in its responsibility to and public/private actions.
  • Probable lack of vision, planning and foresight into doing simple things that public expects to be coordinated.
AAP deserves high praise for its actions after the elections, specially all of a sudden a party without national presence and lack of seasoned politicians and experienced leaders; but simply a bunch of do-good folks with education and sincerity to addressing and implementing to the needs of general public are given power to deal with and solve the problems of the nations capital.

The criticism from the old and entrenched politicians and parties are expected, as they would like AAP to fail and fail quickly so they can claim the “I TOLD YOU SO” and focus back to the age old politics of INC or even BJP and all others who have had the time and resources to implement to the needs of the people. Generations and generations of time has passed and still the national theme of “GARIBI HATAO” remove poverty has never been seriously dealt with. The leaders keep drumming up the themes of caste and religion and benchmarks for underprivileged, and programs of women and children and whatever they can think of, with utter disregard for the amount of time India has been independent from foreign rule.

We have forgotten the election promises made by every government since 1947, or rather the politicians would like the people of the country to forget them and make them again and again with each election cycle. We are presented with same people, language and posturing every election cycle, and utter disregard for human issues. There is no place that is more democratic or patient as India and its population, still we get the same old spiel on what the politicians will do when they come back into power.

While AAP continues to make mistakes with its speeches and disagreements in public, it also is forcing the nation to look at politicians as people who should perform to what they say when getting elected, rather visitors who come every 5 years. If nothing is done by AAP, it is forcing the public to look at politicians in a light that India has long since ignored. They are accountable for their promises and actions, and the politicians of the old do not like this. Even if AAP fails to succeed in Delhi in its management and politics, it has put the people first and it is a process long due in India. The criticism that stems from the old politicians is rather comforting to the public as it is exactly what the public will be doing when a party in power doesn't keep up to its election promises. If nothing AAP has delivered to the people the ability to listen, vote and demand that the election promises are not just that, and they are real issues that are to be addressed and handled by the elected.

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