Monday, January 17, 2011

Lesson from Tunisia

Last week Tunisia’s dictator for twenty three years Zine el Abidine ben Ali was forced to flee the country and seek shelter in the Saudi Arabia. This was after a month of public protest and demonstrations against his misrule and some worst forms of corruption by him and his close relatives. The shock waves of his ignominious dethronement and escapade have been felt in the other Arab capitals including Cairo. Presidents of several Arab countries officially elected for life are feeling discomfited at the fate of ben Ali and quite naturally so.

In India too the central government would be experiencing some discomfort due to the Tunisian development. If a tightly controlled society can show that kind of determined opposition to the extremely corrupt ways of their government, Indian society with its freedom of speech can do a little better – that is the fear which should now be haunting the leaders of our government. If only fifty thousand people, which is only one third of one per cent of Delhi’s population, surround the Parliament complex for days and weeks demanding that the Central government demonstrably moved effectively against the corrupt politicians and bureaucrats or resigned forthwith, the things can change for the better.

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