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Throwing ink is fine
What about asking questions of others and asking others to shut up when the dirt in your backyard is questioned? Are they high points?

I must make a confession, upfront. I am no fan of either the Congress or the BJP. Nor do my sympathies lie with AK 47, aka, Arvind Kejriwal. Little wonder, I am irresponsible in that I don’t vote.

A BJP party-man or ex party-man, depending on whom you want to believe, threw ink at Kejriwal, and television channels went on a scream. Of how this was the lowest point in Indian politics. Really?  What about throwing slippers? What about beautiful phrases like “Chor”; “Tumhare mama ka paisa kya?”; “Harami?” What about taking a dig at a woman’s health? Pray are these high points?

What about lack of knowledge of history or of geography? Are they just minor gaffes in the course of public speaking or is it one at failing while seeking to fake higher levels of knowledge? Are these high points? What about clamming up? We have repeatedly seen that in the past, including use of such phrases as “being in the interest of national security.” What about asking questions of others and asking others to shut up when the dirt in your backyard is questioned? Are they high points?

What about opposing for the sake of opposing? Is that politics at the leading edge? What about the call to ban English? What about alleged snooping and then saying don’t cross the boundaries? Why not open yourself up for a probe in much the same way as you demand of others? What about the demand to strip Prof Amartya Sen and Lata Mangeshkar of the Bharat Ratna all because the former said he did not want to see Modi as PM and the later said she wanted to! What a high indeed!

And what is it that you see on our television channels? OMG disrespectful anchors, who do not allow panelists to speak; and panelists who yell at the top of their voices. You thought women would bring dignity and grace to the debate. But the shrill manner of speaking as also the demeanor of some wonder if they are the right examples for our children. These are high points, is it?    

Parliamentary tickets to indicted men and women cutting across the political spectrum; marriages of convenience; being hunky dory while wedded and spitting venom post political divorce; are these the high points of Indian politics?  You have ministers with not so lily-white a record adorning office. Politics has become so dirty that good men fight shy of entering there. Just take the case of someone like Tendulkar. The mere announcement of a Bharat Ratna to him has set the cat amongst the pigeons.

Take a look at the kind of language that is exchanged on Facebook and on Twitter to get a ringside view of how nasty us Indians speak. This includes well-known personalities who shame you with their dialect. If this is ingrained in us, then why blame the political class alone? As a nation, we have hit new lows in social, public and private lives. Politics is just a reflection of what’s happening in society. Throwing ink is the least catastrophic of them all. In fact, I would think its proper protest.

Whenever something is pointed out, there is a vitriolic diatribe that it’s a conspiracy and that the timing is suspect. Is that a high? I understand that everyone has a skeleton or two in his cupboard. Throw enough mud on a person and it will stick. It would be good if we can have some niceness for a change.

 

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