With reference to the impressive article on “Corruption and Political Reforms” by Toki Blah, it is true that political reforms are urgently required to curb corruption. Politics has become a dirty game that leaves the poor and ignorant mass stagnant and frustrated. Politicians both at the local and national level have exposed themselves as unstable and fickle persons whose word is law and who can do no wrong. As pointed out, deficit governance is overwhelmingly identified as the most shameful trait before the international community. Anyone can see that corruption emanates mainly from the political class. This has brought about the most shameless disgrace in the sense that money alone can speak and influence. Hence the rich become richer and the poor poorer.
The absence of “ Good Governance” leads to deterioration and misery in all spheres of life. So unless drastic political reforms are undertaken, our future looks bleak. Here we would like to cite the case of “ Jaintia Hills district” as a prominent example. Corruption has plundered it beyond imagination. This has become noticeable since 2005 due to the lack of political awareness and control. It seems that “ law and justice” have become inoperative in this land. It has turned out to be the “ land of suckers” where anyone with money or with desire to make more money can influence the law makers. As pointed out recently in your esteemed daily, even transfer and postings of IAS/MCS officers are decided by the political lobby. But in the case of the deputy commissioner of Jaintia Hills, T Dkhar, he has been reinstated many times through the support of not only the political lobby, the coal and cement lobby but also the “commercial lobby” from Jowai. This commercial lobby has encroached upon and commercialised almost all the government and PWD lands.
The PWD authorities themselves must have obtained the support of the political lobby otherwise how could important sketch maps and other land documents simply vanish since 2005? Many a times, reports have been made regarding the high-handed act of this “commercial lobby.” But the authorities prefer to cast a blind eye. Therefore ruthless, arrogant and short- sighted characters abound and flourish in this district and arbitrary power takes the lead. The environment of the place is badly destroyed by greed and covetousness due to lack of political intervention and control and it is feared that this constant plunder and destruction will soon eliminate even the “Identity” of the Pnar people.
One cannot help wondering what sort of representatives we have been having and how could they have been so short-sighted and shameless. To them, “politics” is nothing but a means to make easy money for the sake of promoting personal interests. We cannot blame illiteracy, for education cannot prevent corruption as observed in many cases. With the rise in corruption, social evils too have increased. Nothing but bad news emanates from Jaintia Hills. Some noted representatives especially do not encourage people to express their grievances. One of them even said “If you have any problems, don’t come to me as individuals but come as a locality” It seems that votes are not cast individually but collectively as a locality. We see no progress and development in Jaintia Hills District. Its condition has only worsened. We can only implore upon the government to turn its attention towards the Jaintia people and not treat us as aliens or phantoms whose communication remains unseen and unheard. Last but not the least, Toki Blah was right in his suggestion to improve the quality of political representation for only this will result in better governance for we all need law makers who truly believe in the rule of law.
Of tinted glasses
The move to ban the use of tinted glasses on private vehicles in the name of curbing crime and violence against women is a decision taken without much thought. It may seem like a good decision on the part of the authorities but they need to also look into the pros and cons of this drastic decision.
Firstly women who drive their own vehicles may not be safe if they are visible. If they get struck in the middle of the night on the national highways due to frequent and huge traffic jams surrounded by heavily loaded trucks would they be safe? The world we live in today is a world of speed where everyone is in a rush to complete their tasks. Women cannot depend on men to take them around . Hence the concerned father, husband or brother would want her vehicle to have tinted glasses for safety.
The concerned authority who has taken this decision needs to take a fresh look at this issue taking into account the safety and security of women.