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Feudal Politics

Submitted by on February 28, 2007 – 3:08 pm

The latest results of assembly (Vidhan Sabha) elections in Punjab, Uttaranchal and Manipur have not been of help to Congress. It has been voted out of power in Punjab and Uttaranchal. For BJP, it has been a gain as it has come back to power now.

I know about Punjab. Five years back, people voted against Badal government (SAD + BJP) to bring in Congress because they wanted a change as Sardar Prakash Singh Badal had not delivered upto their expectations. Captain Amrinder Singh of Congress got 5 years and now he is also out. People can just vote against the ruling government in a hope that the new regimen will bring some change, but things donot change. It is not that now people have all love for Badal , actually people had no other option! Punjab is a propserous state, but corruption in the government departments is like a pest: it ssems that it will never be exterminated and in the process politicians continue to loot the State. Personally speaking as a voter, I prefer SAD + BJP combine over Congress, but as far as corruption and concern for development are concerned, all these parties are the same (letus hope, BJP with a better representation in this government will monitor the progress of the Badal performance in a better way)!

Mr Badal has a filial love for his kith and kin (**see below, how many relatives of Badal were given tickets this time)! The states have become personal fiefdoms for politicians: they are like princely states or empires for them where they raise enormous wealth in their 5- years term (knowing well that they may not be elected next time): Om Prakash Chautala (more notoriously), Bhajan Lal have done this in Haryana, Badal has done so in Punjab, Laloo- Rabri did so in Bihar, the media is abuzz that the current chief minister of UP, Mulayam Singh Yadav has amassed property worth more than 100 crores; Mayawati has built an empire in UP and Sonia Gandhi is doing the same at the Center. Similarly the name of JayLalita comes to our mind.

Solution: people have to be the watch-dogs. We have to rise above party-politcs and form non-partisan platforms/ organizations to watch the performance of the governments. Persoanl likings for one politicl party or the other is not bad, but we have to assess the performance of the goverment in a dispassionate manner.

**Almost all close relations of Parkash Singh Badal won from various segments. His nephew Manpreet Singh Badal won from Gidderbaha and his son-in-law Adesh Partap Singh Kairon from Patti. His other relative Birkram Singh won from Majitha and Janmeja Singh Sekhon from Ferozepore. Jagbir Singh Brar won from Jalandhar cantonment (source: The Tribune, Feb 28, 2007))

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