India’s Lack of Political Will

  • SumoMe

India is a country where there is lack of political will. Everything is dependent on red-tapism and corruption.
To weed out the evils which prevent schemes from being implemented and being fully utilized, the Govt. needs to first tackle the reasons for the failure. However, to tackle these, it needs political will, which it severely lacks. It does try to show that it is doing all things in its power to curb corruption, Centre-State differences, etc, but we all know the truth. Now, since the will to tackle the problems which delay or derail implementation of schemes, Government orders, etc is not there, can the political will/desire required to actually implement schemes be ingrained in our politicians?? The answer is a blatant NO!

1. Take are being taken to ensure that there is no power shortage, but the fact remains that these projects take years and years to complete, i.e., if they even get completed. Otherwise, these projects just serve to fill the pockets of the already rich contractors, and the politicians too.

2. Let us look into the railway sector. India takes pride in comparing itself to China, but China, even though not a democracy (or maybe because it’s not a democracy) has the political will to are completed on time and that it’s aim of becoming a developed nation is achieved in the set time frame. The Beijing railway project was completed in 3 yrs. Here in India, modernization of 10 stations takes more than 5 years. India adds 250-350 km of new track length per year, while China added 2,500 km of track length last year and has set higher targets this year. Trains doing an average speed of 55 km/hr are classified as super fast. In China, super fast trains do 350-400km/hr.

Whether you talk of infrastructure, telecom, export, economic growth, etc., China is ahead of us in each aspect, except population growth rate. It sometimes makes me wonder whether too much of politics destroys a democracy.


Reasons for the lack of will

We all know that politicians lack this will or desire to bring actual change. Let us now analyze why it is so.
One of the main reasons is the nature of politics in India, and the presence of too many parties. Politicians in India, irrespective of their political party, play the vote bank politics. This is, in part, a doing of the general population who doesn’t come out and vote. Therefore, political parties, in their lust for power, target separate communities, similar to the strategy followed by the British in India. They know that 50% of the population does not give a hoot about who comes to power. The remaining 50% are sought by various political parties (among whom are many religious outfits). Out of the 50% who vote, quite a large chunk can be easily swayed, swayed by money, booze, and by dividing them on the basis of caste, colour, religion, etc. This is the truth. Take Meena and Gujjars who are two large blocks who literally control who comes to power. Such blocks are present in many states! If the politicians do anything which might not suit their interest, they protest violently and vote against them in the next elections. Similarly, a minority politician may never do anything which may hurt his/her vote bank, even if it for their own good. Our politicians, even National parties, are playing this card, therefore tying themselves up in a tangle of wires from which they cannot come out and do something good for their country even if they want to. This is because the greed for being in power is more than the need of doing something good for their country, even if it involves taking some tough steps. The problem lies in the short sightedness of both, our politicians, as well as the general masses. We need to come out of this mess now!

Example: Hill stations in India are being pushed to their limits. Nainital and Shimla are being choked to death, and both will soon be deserted by the hordes that are currently visiting them. The Government should take urgent steps to short sighted. They see immediate gains, not the long term prospects. They think that such measures will drive away tourists, but they do not understand that a few tourists are better than no tourists after some year! To add to such thoughts are the opposition parties!

In such cases, the politician may want to do something good, but for the fear of losing his/her seat, does not take such steps. This has to change.

Similarly, even good politicians do not crack down on corrupt/bad Govt. officers/employees because they know that the Govt. employees for a large chunk of those people who go out and vote, and if, for the good of the country, the party proposes changes which will increase production and efficiency of work (thereby meaning more work and accountability), the Government employees will (usually) reject it and threaten to vote against them! Therefore, the Government prefers to make small changes or no changes at all.
The problem is that no one is willing to sacrifice one’s self interest for the good of the country. No one is ready to put the country first. I say if a party comes to power, it’s there for 5 years, right? Let it bring reforms, let all the politicians unite, and do something good for the country. Let me see politicians who do not bow down to pressure exerted by various groups. Think about India for once and see how well everyone will prosper. Alas, no one is willing to take this step and India’s growth story sounds good only on paper. Majority of the population is still poor and illiterate. 50% children below 4 yrs of age are malnourished. The preparations for the common wealth games are going on at their own sweet pace, and when the pace increases, the quality decreases!

The problem in all such cases is not the lack of is being misused in India. This needs to be dealt with by making changes in our Constitution! It’s a big step, but someone has to take some steps or else we will have no future. India is on the threshold of change and it cannot be held back by the lack of vision, and/or ability to comprehend what is good and what is not and protesting en masse over anything and everything. If we do not seize this moment, it’ll be tough later on. For once, please forget your lust greed for power and remember that you (politicians) are a politician so that you can serve the country and its people. If the people are going astray, you need to guide them, rather than side with them on what can be the betterment of their, and your, country!

Zain Inhovi

[Image courtesy: http://www.outlookindia.com/images/photoessays/young_girl_20080124.jpg]

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