I think that I speak for most of the people of India when I say, "I am just fed up with the politicians and the corruption." I think this is self explanatory and doesn’t need to be elaborated upon. We all saw the negative sentiment of the people against the politicians after the Mumbai terror attacks. We are living in a country where you can buy almost anything ranging from an election ticket, elected office to a religious post. We cannot organize a simple auction of flats without a scam or run a simple bus service without people getting killed. What more. You can even get away with murder. If you are not fed up then its time to wake up.
I will do something about it
We have all heard people say that “Something needs to be done” but nobody ends up doing anything. Even when somebody does something about it, it is at the individual level which becomes interesting to read or hear about but it does not address the root cause of the problem. Well, my first reason for becoming a candidate is that “I have decided to do something about it” in my own small way, that is, I have decided to be a candidate for the Lok Sabha elections in either 2009 or the next election in 2014. I may be a little late for 2009 elections but lets see how it goes.
Why do I want to contest for election?
“CITIZEN should be the King” but in reality he is a “beggar.” “CITIZEN is King” will become true only when the current group of politicians face competition or risk losing their elected office.
I believe that we, the people of India, need to take the following steps to make the government work for us. These steps are as follows:
(a) All the people who are eligible to vote, should vote.
(b) Honest people should contest elections to provide alternatives to people to vote for as well as provide competition to the current group of politicians.
(c) People who are eligible to vote should vote for people with a positive record.
All the above three steps need working on simultaneously otherwise we will not be able to achieve what we want to achieve, that is, making the Citizen of this country “king.” A number of people are working on the first step, that is, encouraging more and more people to register and vote. Tata Tea’s campaign and website Jagore.com is an excellent example. As mentioned earlier, it is absolutely necessary for everybody who is entitled to vote to vote but I am not sure that this alone will solve our problems.
Why? Simple. We will just continue to do what we have been doing in the past, that is, elect Congress for 1 / 2 terms and then elect BJP but with more and more votes. Similarly, in UP we elect Mayawati or Mulayam Singh Yadav with more and more votes. What good would it do? We will be voting for the same guys. Do you guys see any hope for our country in this scenario? Do you think we will get where we want to go with this system? I don't think so.
Every 4 or 8 years, we simply vote for either the Congress or the BJP. These parties know that for sometime they will rule and for sometime the opposition will rule. For the citizen, nothing really changes for the better. We just get what we mistakenly think is better of the two evils.
As mentioned earlier, we need to work on action 2 and 3 above. Currently, there is no competition for the politicians. As such, there is no incentive for the politicians to improve. All the noise that people made after the Mumbai terror attacks will have no significant effect on the way politicians act. For them, it will be business as usual. We need to stop shouting from outside because there is no one listening. We need to get inside to get a voice and to do something about our country aswell as our life as a citizen of this nation.
We have all experienced the power of competition in the business world. We all know that it is the competition which ultimately brings benefits to the customers in terms of improved quality and lower prices of products. It is the competition that makes customer a “King” by providing alternatives products. Competition also serves as a deterrent to businesses going slack.
Similarly, I believe that we also need to bring in competition in the field of “Country Management” which we today refer to as “Politics.” (To know more about the difference between Country Management and Politics, click here.
) I believe that the first thing that we as Citizens of this country should do is provide competition to our elected officials. Only when competition comes in, that the current group of politicians will realize that they have to perform or perish. It is competition in “Country Management” (or politics) that will make the “citizen” and the “voter” the “King.” I have decided that I want to increase the competition in politics by providing the people an “Alternative” to vote for. I want to encourage other people to also contest elections and provide the alternative.
Lastly, we as voters have to think who we are voting for. Let us not vote for the same group of people who are corrupt again and again. Let us not vote for people who are corrupt and incompetent. Let us not vote for politicians who get your personal work done but do not change the system. Let us VOTE FOR people who will establish a system so that not only your work gets done but everybody’s work gets done without any hassles without any bribes or favours.
Imagine, if the people of this country completely replaced all the current politicians with new faces who are honest. Don’t you think we will be able to change the system? Don’t you think we will be able to reduce corruption? Don’t you think we will be able to organize a simple auction of flats without a scam? Don’t you think we will be able to close the BRT system in Delhi which doesn’t make sense as well as it is killing the common citizen? Don’t you think we can stop allotment of licenses for peanuts to companies like Unitech which has caused a loss of Rs. 40,000 crores to the people of this country? Don’t you think we will be able to improve all aspects of our life?
However, we all know that this is not going to happen immediately. Maybe it can. Nobody thought that an African American or a woman could become the president of USA but an African American Barak Obama did become the president and a woman came pretty close to becoming one. The power lies in YOU and ME to bring about a 180 degree change. The power lies in US to completely replace all the politicians who are corrupt and incompetent.
Whether we achieve our goal immediately or take a little time doing it, we have to make a start. But someone has to start the process. We have to start sometime. The sooner the better. That someone is YOU and I. The time to start is NOW and not later.
What is my strategy?
Many of my friends have encouraged me to do what I am trying to do but a number of them have said that we need to generate resources (read money) to contest elections. This will go against my principle, that is, money should not play a role in elections as that is what is the root cause of all our problems today. We need to make a 180 degree change and not do what we have been doing in the past.
I will not spend money like the current breed of politicians do. Anyway, I do not have that kind of money or fund collecting ability so my options are limited. If I do the same as what other politicians are doing then there will be no difference between them and I. Also, if I take money from someone, I will be under an obligation to help him if I am elected which is what is rotting our governance system. Lastly, if I spend too much money (either mine or somebody else’s) I will try to recover the same after elections which is what is leading to corruption. So, I am going to use the website and the Internet (read emails and blog) to reach the people and convince them to vote for me. The money involved in doing so will be negligible and something I can afford to lose without worrying about it. In fact, I will post the expenses I incur on my effort to provide the people with an alternative to vote for.
I do not intend taking even a rupee from friends, relatives or colleagues. However, I will ask people to support me on a voluntary basis. They need to do whatever they can do to assist me to get elected only when they feel that getting me elected is good for the country and the Citizens of this country. They need to vote for me only when they are convinced that I will make the Citizen of this country “King.”
Stop shouting from outside. Get inside.
We, as the people of this country, can complain all we want and as loudly as we want but we will not get an appropriate response from the politicians. Why? Simply, because they know that after they are elected, we have no power to do anything. We are helpless. As such, we need to get the power by being elected. As a MP or MLA, we will acquire the authority and status to ask questions, to take action as well as to raise our voice for the benefit of the general public who own the country. As a MP or MLA, we will be heard. Government officials and newspapers will not ignore us.