As a child I remember reading an Akbar-Birbal tale in which someone had stolen something from Akbar’s palace, but no one had any idea as to who the culprit could be. There were thus around 25-30 people who were under suspicion.
And as usual Birbal came up with a novel way of catching the thief. He announced to everyone on the palace premises that he had in his possession a magic lotion, which was transparent, but when applied on a thief’s palm would change its color to red. Hearing this, everyone was wondering what next. Now Birbal asked each one of them to go in a room alone and apply the lotion on their palms and come out. After the whole bunch had gone in and applied the lotion, to everyone’s surprise, there was no red palm in the room.
So now who was the thief they asked each other.
That’s when Birbal declared the thief; it was the person who did not have a rose fragrance on his palms. The “Magic” lotion was rose water, and it would not turn a thief’s hands red, but could keep the fragrance away from the person who did not apply the lotion fearing his hands shall turn red!
Today when I see the politicians and the bureaucrats showing their negative attitude towards the Jan Lokpal bill, a similar feeling is creeping inside. Why would they want to pass a law which shall bring a negative impact or spin a web which will strangulate their income?
Whenever a government employee, be it from the banks, railways or ministers themselves, want a pay hike or any of their demands fulfilled, if they feel something is not going as per their plan, declare strikes or bandhs, carry out rallies, disrupt a common man’s life, public and private properties are damaged and sometimes even destroyed; But still no one is taken into custody or remand! Because it’s a politician’s call.
Today, when a common man did the same, the same police force and the ministers call it illegitimate? The system is now trying to illuminate the nation of the laws and protocols that exists for carrying out a peaceful agitation. Is the government trying to educate us about my rights to use my fundamentals rights are also in subject to their conditions?
But all is still not lost. The government still has decency and has not applied section 144 across the nation, it is still letting the media do their work without interference and last but not the least, it had the decency to retract and apologize for some callous remarks made in reference to Anna Hazare.