The privileges denied to the ordinary

Shiban Khaibri
Reminded of a story of great interest wherein a needy person managed to gain entry into a good looking house reminiscent of a wealthy or a rich owner. It was the calm serene hour of the middle of the night when the needy person , however, succeeded in reaching up to the room where some cash and gold he found, was lying in a cupboard. He hurriedly but happily put some in a piece of cloth picked again from the same room and started leaving the room with the packed bundle ostensibly to rush back home but in the nick of the time, the house owner woke up from sleep and tried to catch hold of the ”needy” person , say for brevity the thief . Both ran for their respective objectives but somehow since the rich house owner was physically strong , he managed to overpower and catch the thief by his arm and asked him to return ”his” bundle of cash and gold.
There was a slight scrimmage between the two, the house owner trying to take away what the thief had stolen and the latter trying to retrieve it from the former . While the scuffle was peaking , the thief would plead to give him at least some from the bundle but the rich man would not and would keep on yelling threateningly , ”give me my money back, give me my gold back” . “Don’t you know me and my power?” ,thereafter , he further told him that he was a politician and had been a Minister in the government sometime back . Not known from where the thief mustered enough courage whereupon he firmly grabbed the ex- Minister saying loudly, “Give me my money back, give us our money back – our money , my money , people’s money” as he by then, had fairly recognised the concerned politician. The moral of this story is that it is one thing to brazenly hide thieving , quite another feigning honesty, innocence and putting wool into the eyes of others .
Sometimes lyricists of our Bollywood write fantastic pieces also with reference to such ”situations” like “Yeh public hai sab jantee hai , yeh public hai” or “Pardey main rehney do, parda na uthaoo , parda jo uth gaya tou raaz khul jayega”. Interpretation is hardly needed. Partha Chatterjee’s parda is lifted but see the brazen face – he claims that the mountains of cash, stacks of high currency denominations of cash , jewellery , etc are not belonging to him and that he has been ”framed” . Poor fellow having been number 2 in the ”highly secular” TMC government in Bengal is ”framed” . The lady from whose bungalow the piles of cash was found which was counted for days together by the note counting machines requisitioned for the purpose by the Enforcement Directorate, too, claims innocence by saying not knowing who ”kept” so much cash in her house. Many must have held their breath tight expecting some from the pseudo secular brigade saying it being the handiwork of the ”RSS “, who else can be held responsible except the “RSS” as all the ”ills” in this country are on account of the RSS. Thank Almighty so far, this satanic idea has not dawned into those few but effective liberal, democratic , secular and tolerant brains. Playing victimhood even after thieving is an art nursed by such daring bravados. Even showing “V” sign and waving “Gamschas” and raising hands to touch skies and wearing artificial smiles while going to the lockup /jail are other tantrums of these honest ”innocent” alleged scammers.
That apart , who says India was any poor as routinely parroted by most of the opposition parties especially post 2014 else it was earlier all “Shree Ram Raj”, prosperous and happy people, lowest prices, nominal whole sale and retail inflation, peace and tranquillity, petrol/diesel/LPG etc all sold virtually just for a song , no unemployment from any corner , farmers very much prosperous hence dancing with joy with nil suicides and no debts and the like. Wherefrom so many heaps of cash sprouted , how it was collected , from whom and what for was it collected, how so far the culprit(s) of society, the economy and the country enjoyed a virtual immunity is not important for those political parties which are sworn adversaries of Modi and his government but are pointing fingers to the Enforcement Directorate as RSS having been in “control” of all democratic and autonomous institutions . Incurable RSS phobia , indeed.
It is uniformly seen with these big political wigs that when they are subjected to scrutiny of the law of the land even required to face questions pertaining to alleged bungling, fraudulent financial manipulations even bordering at money laundering , they feign suffering from all types of diseases , using wheel chairs , with necks titled sideways and even feigning suffocated and fainting as if the law had any provision for being taken in and thus condoning their huge money thieving . When made to undergo austere medical check-up , they are found by the expert team of Doctors quite hale , strong and healthy . Another thing which these VVIPs involved in various types of scams do at the time of their arrest is showing victory signs by exhibiting a ”V” not knowing what type of victory and achieving it by defeating whom . One who was made to accompany the ED personnel late last month kept on making postures of bravery and emerging clean while going to ED office ready to be caught by the cameras of some ever-ready media persons . This gentleman kept to his stand firmly that 21 MLAs were ”in his contact” even when political developments were getting unfolded in Maharashtrian politics and astonishingly even thereafter. This has become a political as well as a literary riddle which remains to be solved.
On the other hand , we have to ”wait for the time” to tell if action against 70 year old Partha Chaterjee was justified as claimed by him late last month and that ”he was a victim of a conspiracy hatched against him”. See the role of our opposition parties who were at once influenced by his “conspiracy ” theory and wanted the same to be unfolded and ”more clarifications over his allegations of conspiracy made”. Seeing overall stoic silence by most of the opposition parties over unearthing of tons of cash belonging to poor public because the alleged accused are from non-BJP ideology and parties , fairly exposes these parties and we know had it been a case of an accused from the BJP , all round hell would have broken out , all those groups and clubs of secular , liberal tolerant ideology would have left no stone unturned in raising high pitched voices, leading demonstrations and protests , candle and “maun” (mouths tapped) marches and submitting memorandums to the President of India seeking PM’s resignation and what not .
Public sees through these tricks of the opposition parties. Some TMC loyalists now claim zero tolerance for corruption but it is strange that not a whimper, not a grizzle not even a bleat was heard from the TMC leadership over such a big scam on such a magnitude going on for years allegedly by and at the behest of a most powerful TMC leader and Minister in the TMC cabinet. Why not any ”Khela hobe , Dekha hobe and Jeta Hobe” in respect of fight against corruption by the top TMC leadership especially when Partha claims that “fellow TMC workers were aware about money collection in exchange for providing government school jobs” ? About those leaders who are already arrested for various economic offences but whose leadership was routinely issuing being ”clean and innocent” certificates to them and blaming the concerned agencies instead required to unearth scams and subjecting the accused to the confines of the law , were similarly claiming innocence, conspiracy, political vendetta, misusing of ED , CBI and other agencies and what not. All these political VIP accused , therefore, have the privileges to feign innocence and playing victimhood cards and being punished for not toeing the line of the ruling dispensation whatever the case.
Imagine in contrast, an ordinary citizen arrested for some minor or major offence will never avail of the all reserved privileges of the VIP politicians claiming conspiracy , framing, political vendetta etc nor show ”V” sign nor wave Gamcshas nor touch skies with raised hands nor act to have fainted nor titling necks sideways . Should not these accused from the ordinary common people be at least ”praised” for having generally cooperated with the police and other agencies during and after arrest and thus upheld the regard for law ?
The other face of politicians can be seen in what happened in Bihar recently all of a sudden. Mr. Clean rejoining the same ranks whom he had relinquished in 2017 for those having been involved in alleged corrupt practices . The question needs an answer whether all those charges of corruption are proved fake and whether the country’s legal system has exonerated them for having been proved innocent. If not, why he divorced the RJD in 2017 and if the obverse why he again joined them. Nursing higher ambitions by anyone is no problem but only after making minimum required calculations , Nitish Ji seems to have hurriedly overlooked this basic requirement. Time will tell surely in this connection and we shall surely see the results to our astonishment.