Sunday, June 24, 2007

Raja Bhaiya and politics

This is how it is in our country. Depending on who is in power, the question is answered about whether a person is a criminal or not. This is not good for our country, and for a sense of right and wrong. If a person is criminal, then that is something to be decided by the legal system, and not by the politicians. And as I write this, I would laught at this last statement if it was not so terrible.
A person who is the local terror in his region, who has a pond having human skeletons in it, who would think nothing about killing anybody who got in his way, was a minister in the Mulayam Singh cabinet, and there was not the furore that should have happened. Is the situation in our country so bad that if a person is from a certain caste, his caste members will forgive him anything, and any prosecution is seen as a caste related move? If that is the case, it is a tendency that will destroy this great country.
So, let's take the example of Raja Bhaiya, whose real name is Raghuraj Pratap Singh, and who is an independent MLA from Pratapgarh in Uttar Pradesh. The state of governance in UP had declined to such an extent, that no matter what he did, Raja Bhaiyya was immune from any consequence of his actions. There are numerous court cases listed against Raja Bhaiyya and if not for the political protection that Mulayam gave him, and if there was an independent police system, he would have been in jail long time back.
But, if it is politics that kept him out of problems, it is politics that put him in serious problems. He is seen as a symbol of the Thakur community, and is in the doghouse of Mayawati. Last time she was in power, she had slapped TADA against him, and the situation does not look very different this time.

Former minister and independent MLA from Kunda (Pratapgarh), Raghuraj Pratap Singh, alias Raja Bhaiyya is in trouble again. The state police has declared him a dacoit, who has a well-organised gang and is wanted in a number of cases.
Interestingly, the change in the police perception is matched by the change in the state government, which is now headed by Raghuraj’s bete noire Mayawati. A ‘respectable’ minister and public face under previous government headed by the Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav till May 10, Raja Bhaiyya is now an eyesore for the police. Having described him as a threat to the law and order situation, the police are now on the lookout for him.

Even though I applaud any action taken against such a despicable person, it is a problem that we face. For a country to be taken as a country of laws and policies, they need to be respected only if these are implemented without fear and discrimination. And in our country, the police force is seen as the force that can get the needs of politicians implemented, and hence the politicians are the ones who will always make sure that the police force is always under their control.
The maintenance of law and order is a state subject, and that is why, there are so many unequal implementations of law and order, or rather, 'the rule of law', in the country. The Supreme Court made a start by trying to make a set of rules that will make the police force independent and yet accountable, but that effort met with a lot of resistance from states, and is currently on a slow track.

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posted by Ashish Agarwal @ 2:58 AM