Thursday, August 18, 2011

Just Protest. These Times Will Never Come Again.

By Gaurav Parab

This blog post starts with an appeal to cynics. It ends with a modified Warren Zevon song. In the middle you will find me rambling. When I am just sold to an idea, I burp, ramble and tear my hair out.

If you have been living on some other planet, India is in the middle of a revolution. No, this is no twitter gag, no sms hype, no facebook flash mob. This is not Libya or Egypt. This is India. We are in the middle of a fuking revolution (This is the first obscenity ever on my blog).

I know there are cynics and I respect everyone who at least has an opinion. A year ago, our generation would have said “My Bad, Who is This Anna Thingy”. Challenging Anna Hazzare, even if it is wrong, is at least a start. Let me address you first.

This Will Lead To Nothing, so why participate?

Revisit history books. It always leads to something.

In this case, it has already led to something. Politicians are men and women made of flesh and bone. For sixty four years, rarely has anyone challenged them. Today, they are quivering in their boots and huddled in emergency meetings to discuss the situation. If they spent half the energy they are spending on ‘tackling’ Anna on actually coming up with a sincere anti-corruption mechanism – then we would be a better people.

Their decisions show they are clueless on how to deal with the very people they have manipulated, controlled and stolen from for years. They were all naturally incompetent administrators and public servants, but now their incompetence as leaders is showing in their actions. They buckled once when they allowed the team on to the drafting committee. They will buckle again.

There would have been cynics who could have never imagined the mightiest empire our planet had ever seen taken apart by a diminutive man and his strange methods. It did happen. It always leads to something.

 If nothing else, this is the message you send to everyone who has denied you a quality of life that you deserve for working so hard. The message is we are asking questions, we are not being silent anymore. You can stop a man’s body, you cannot stop his spirit. Just turn up ok? These fantastic times will never visit us again.

There are forces behind Anna - RSS / United States / Political Parties/ Loch Ness Monster

Politicians are the last word in marketing. They sell hope and they sell it well. Hence it is more surprising that the communication is so jumbled when they try to put a finger to Anna’s popularity. Perhaps it is not so surprising the communication is so jumbled. When you lie, you cannot keep a straight face.

In the protests I have attended, thousands are turning up at short notice because they believe in something. These people at the protests cannot be bought for a 500 rupee note like they are for political rallies. They make more money in the one hour they spend at the office as opposed to protesting. Then there are people in this protest who make 500 rupees a month. They realize that if something is not done, they will never make Rs 501 before it is stolen away.

If there were forces behind these protests, the protests would have been bigger and not as decentralized. The organizers go out of their way to make sure that no voices are raised against politicians, parliament, or people. The only thing the organizers are interested in is Jan Lok Pal. I doubted earlier if this was apolitical. Having seen the types of crowds, I am certain it is.

To turn the argument around, one question. What if there are forces behind it? Do you shoot the messenger or the message? Is our country becoming unstable due to this protest or due to the endemic corruption that prevents us from delivering to our potential? And don’t you think it would take a genius to not own up considering how popular this movement is becoming. I don’t think any group or party in this country has the ability to resist such a temptation.

From the blog Gaurav Parab Says

And the United States? Good Lord, you must be really dense to not see through the people who are making this accusation. They did it with JP, and they failed. They will fail again. It is the oldest trick in the book. Divide the opposition by throwing as much dirt as you can, and hope some sticks in someone’s mind. Just turn up ok? These fantastic times will never visit us again.

Anna is Destroying Parliament and Democratic Institutions. This is blackmail

A bogey raised by politicians who first hid behind the police and now behind parliament. Ironically, it is politicians who have destroyed every institution they fall in love with every time they are in trouble. The CBI is a government tool. It cannot launch investigations suo moto. The CAG can audit, cannot prosecute. The PAC is made of politicians. The CVC is toothless. State police is controlled by state governments. It is a web designed by politicians to ensure we can steal, and we can show you the middle finger while stealing. And them respecting institutions? Spare us. Take my money, but don’t insult my intelligence.

The Prime Minister says there is no magic wand to deal with corruption. The Prime Minister says we will deal with it in our own way. Well, it took 64 years to arrive at an evening outside Tihar Jail. More than half a century is not enough to come up with a system to punish the corrupt? And so if this is blackmail, what else do you think will the politician be forced to clean up his house? If you think they are going to do it on their own, think again. 64 years. 64 years. 64 years. For 64 years they have done nothing. And now that we ask for it, they say it is the work of parliament. 64 years. Just turn up ok? These fantastic times will never visit us again.

The Protests are not spontaneous, they are managed

Just attend one and you will know. I think Arun Jaitley made a very brave confession when he said that no politician in India could have arranged for such large crowds ‘spontaneously’. Switch off the TV if you think Times Now is so anti-government. Switch off your mind. Just ask the person next to you if this is a good thing. The answer will be spontaneous. I admit candle light marches, and message alerts make the protests convenient. But that should not take anything away from what you and I feel.

Just turn up ok? These fantastic times will never visit us again.

So, what happens next? If I knew, Kapil Sibal would adopt me with tears in his eyes. 

The government will probably hospitalize Anna in a few days and hope the movement fretters out at Ramlila. In the meanwhile, they will play good cop bad cop with Anna using their spokespersons as scapegoats.

Just a simple radio button question to The Government and Political Parties. Do you want a strong anti-corruption law or not? If Yes, why don’t you go ahead and do it? If No, Ah! That explains your behavior.

It is a simple argument, and it should be at the core of every doubt that each cynic has. Hate 
Anna Hazzare, Hate Sonia Gandhi, Hate God. But just put this whole situation to a simple question and you will understand why everything is happening the way it is. Protest, fasts, allegations, institutions, laws, section 144 are all smokescreens hiding the simple question we all should be asking. Do you want a Strong anti-corruption law or not. If not, why? Will tigers go extinct if you pass a strong lok pal bill?

It will take a leader to not look at Jan Lok Pal as a threat to his golden nest, but as a once in a lifetime opportunity to overhaul the system, listen to the public mood, and create history.
If the Government does not act fast, a real danger is this might turn violent and directionless. There are many issues we face in our day to day life, and you can sense the frustration around. Most of the crowd is young and they were all waiting for a chance to use their energy. This has been their outlet. They have tasted blood. It is not as much about Anna Hazzare and Jan Lok Pal as it is about frustration. Expect large numbers of people to vote the next time. And don’t expect the incumbent to win. But replacing a broken brick with quick sand never works. We need an institutional solution, and Jan Lok Bill is exactly that.

Lastly, I apologize for the poor structure and typos in this post. There are many thoughts that are going in my head, and I can’t find the best way to put them forward. I feel excited, I feel restless. For the first time in my adult life I feel like I can make a change in the collective future of my country. And so can you. Just turn up at these protests and put numbers on the street. Numbers and photo ops work. Would like to end this ramble by a slight modification to Warren Zevon’s iconic song.

Everybody's restless and they've got no place to go
Someone's always trying to tell them
Something they already know
So their anger and resentment flow

But don't it make you want to rock and roll
All night long
Anna’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Anna’s Radio

You know, the Sheriff's got his problems too
He will surely take them out on you
In walked the village idiot and his face was all aglow
He's been up all night listening to Anna’s Radio

Don't it make you want to rock and roll
All night long
Anna’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Anna’s Radio

Everybody's desperate trying to make ends meet
Work all day, still can't pay the price of gasoline and meat
Alas, their lives are incomplete

Don't it make you want to rock and roll
All night long Anna’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Anna’s Radio

You've been up all night listening for his drum
Hoping that the righteous might just might just might just come
I heard the General whisper to his aide-de-camp
"Be watchful for Anna’s lamp"

Don't it make you want to rock and roll
All night long Anna’s Radio

The next week might indirectly have a bearing on the next century. Even if it is a might , I think it is a chance worth taking. Just turn up ok? These fantastic times will never visit us again.

See How Anna from village inspired GP from FarmVille


Neha Chahar said...

Thanks !!

Neha Chahar said...


yogesh said...

Just turn up ok?
These fantastic times will never visit us again.

Inspiring thought

vasudha said...


J.S.TYAGI said...

although at present Iam away from the country but my heart and soul is with this movement.
my country need this movement. it can now inspire millions.

J.S.TYAGI said...

it is now or never.

J.S.TYAGI said...

it time to stop the white collered
dacoits from doing more damage to the nation.

joe said...

It seems that its now or never..lets all resolve to get back our golden bird status back..
also charity begins at home.all must resolve not to give bribe after all clapping is frm two hands.

Gaurav Parab said...

Yup. Agree with the general sentiment. Its now or never.

Anonymous said...

When will you post again ? Been looking forward to this !

Kalyan Singh said...

Bhaiya, hats off 2 u!!
Wht a beautiful peace of work...
4 u apologized in d last
Lines 4 poor structure and typos, I'd say it gave more so kind of 1-o-1 feeling, lively and straight frm heart.. Thoroughly enjoyed reading..
N yes.. M turning up as I know These fantastic times will never visit us again.. :)

Keep blogging