Friday, April 24, 2009


BONA FIDE - Malvika Singh
Violence is breaking out in the Naxal-dominated belt, and, for the first time, Indians are becoming conscious of the near takeover of vast regions by this advancing army of politically motivated and committed ideologues who believe in wielding the gun to make themselves heard and accepted. Festering discontent and a lack of clean, efficient and inclusive governance over many decades have led to this ‘movement’. Instead of dealing with it in its nascent stage, governments ignored the reality, the media stayed away and the poorest of the poor went along with the growing wave. To combat the Naxals successfully and quell their violence, the adoption of no-holds-barred methods to garner support and attention is going to be extraordinarily tough in today’s world with its sharp economic disparities.

A calming balm is essential for a start. The administration needs to be activated to enter the neglected and poverty-ridden areas where there is no infrastructure to speak of, no innovative industry that can employ the people and market their produce to the larger mandis of India, no administrative commitment to deliver the basics and no desire to rectify a dreadful truth. Without implementing this kind of a healing process to win back the faith of a betrayed people, chaos, militancy and anarchy will invade other territories too. Is there the possibility of a germinating counter political movement, sans militant terror, with the use of satyagraha to change the lives of millions of Indians who have been left out of the many processes of development? If it is presented correctly and planned meticulously, this could be the real challenge for the future and help India extricate itself from the morass it has been compelled to wallow in. A ‘young’, new-generation movement could well restore a sense of dignity by consciously eliminating abject poverty.

The national rural employment guarantee scheme should, for a start, redefine its parameters to include traditional industry practitioners like cobblers, weavers, potters, stone-cutters, brickmakers and so on and offer them access to its benefits, thereby encouraging the development and marketing of the great resource bank of industries of this civilization.

1 comment:

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