Anna Hazare – The Gandhi-Capped Crusader
News channels and publications in India now begin their bulletins with updates on Anna Hazare’s fast and crusade against corruption. Now nearly the 10th day of his fast, he is still going strong and this is a man you cannot afford to ignore – a fact the government seems to admit as well.
This story of Fight Against Corruption can be compared to a popular comic book setting – something like Batman vs The Joker! The reason why Batman still lives and Superman is passé, is due to the fact Batman has more realistic and equally formidable enemies. Villains challenge Batman and that made him a vigilante who works at nightfall – yet ironically it is Batman who haunts the Villain’s dreams!! Batman has to get to work and solve crime because Gotham’s Police and People won’t.
In India, People have come to accept that corruption is a way of life, something to deal with at every corner and turn. People are weak; you need a Batman who’ll stand up and tell them this has to change – that you don’t need to live with what isn’t right, that you need to correct what is wrong. The human tendency for accepting the “inevitable existence of corruption” is the very basis on which Politicians and corrupt officials make money. In Separation and Isolation, Politicians are able to control and dictate terms of (any) agreement which ultimately benefits their pockets. Given the size of the country and its population, initial news of corruption or wrong doing is hyped, you get some press and headlines on same, after a few days/months everything dies down and the Joker is back to what he does best. Meanwhile People debate on television, on the streets and in homes – some write articles, some blogs such as this, some throw a shoe! Yet Nobody… Nobody takes on the Jokers!!!
It’s easy to shout out loud “bring back India’s black money parked overseas” and stage a hunger strike with devotees without an agenda (!). Its easy to get media attention and have your 15 nanoseconds of fame. But, it takes brain power, moral values and a sincere selfless commitment to people’s causes to ultimately draft a solution and then exhort the Government to implement it. Frankly, if the Government was for the people, by the people and of the people, then it can be safely assumed they had the same brainpower, if not more, to do this by themselves anyway. Yet it took one 76 year old Anna Hazare to give lessons to the kids of the assembly playground on how to behave. Anna agitates, protests, gets vocal, gathers a following of like minded people AND proposes a SOLUTION – the Jan LokPal Bill. Now that’s a Man who I can bet my hard-earned-and-clean money on!!
Anna is our Dark Knight.