Thousands thronged the historic Ramlila Maidan on the sunny noon of 28th December to witness a great historic moment unfolding; it was a moment that carried the promise of changing the character of Indian democracy like never before. The hero of the moment, Arvind Kejriwal, who had upstaged a stunning debut in the Delhi’s corridors of power, was walking up the stage with six of his chosen marauders, who had slain veterans in the just concluded electoral battle of Delhi. Leading his pack, he climbed up the stage with somber countenance while his mind seemed focused on something far away from the immediate sight. Maybe he wasn’t thinking of the maddening crowd or of their victory chants or galvanizing placards eulogizing him rather he was thinking of the challenges ahead – the challenges that were made bigger by heightened expectations and, far more than anything else, by his own towering moral standards. Soon, he was uttering his oath with grit, determination and scrupulousness; after all, he meant each word of it.
The hero of the moment had well realized that the days of fiery speeches and lofty sloganeering were over and now it was the time to act. He always talked of action; while crying down the government of the day in streets he bandied about thousands of innovative ideas on governance and decreed that a will power to ACT on those ideas are the key to achieve swaraj. And now, it was his time to act on those ideas; it was his time to implement his cherished swaraj. At the moment, it was that element of action that was weighing heavily on his mind.
This darling of democracy had always been reiterating the view that governance is not a rocket science. And, of course, it is not. Governance is simple execution of few commonsense solutions as well as ruthless execution of few daring ideas that carry the potential to ease as well as revolutionize the socio-economic existence of the citizens. It doesn’t require geeks and policy wonks with crude technical expertise to make lofty plans rather few committed individuals with steel in their spines to implement some commonplace solutions aimed at common welfare. Looking at his and his team’s level of commitment to bring about the professed changes, it can be said that it should not be difficult for him to achieve those targets. The political environment is buzzing with innovative ideas; all it needs to have someone who can seize upon them and ACT on those ideas.
Here, the AAP leaders need to step in and prove their worth. The odds are stacked against them – They’ve come up against a hostile opposition, have no majority in the house and are still terrible greenhorns in politics; moreover the onus of governance has fallen upon their unprepared shoulders in the most unexpected manner by a conspiracy of circumstances and not by their own sweet volition. They were not yet prepared for the role; the electoral outcome caught them slightly off guard. Yet, they’re willing to take the bait; they’re willing to shoulder the responsibility. They’re the heroes of a new political order, the rising sun of a new dawn coming over the democratic landscape of 21st century India. They will rise and shine to the occasion. They’re heroes and heroes show their characters in adversity.
Many say they would fail but still they wish to give success a chance. They’re determined to give good governance. If they fail they would like to go down taking the battle in the enemy’s camp. They would expose the opposition; they would expose their unholy designs in bringing down the government. Hence, they have nothing to lose. They’re the proletariat of democracy in the 21st century India who are out to dislodge the formidable czars of power. They’re set to reformulate the political discourses of our time and are destined to redefine the agenda of modern politics. They will redefine the political morality and will dictate the terms of democracy on their formidable rivals in the days to come.
It has been a matter of a great political debate that how long will this government survive. Germs of destruction have been set in its very foundation. Well, the great experiment of the Amm Aadmi may come out to be a short-lived affair but it is going to change the tone and tenor of Indian democracy forever. The politicians will no longer remain the distant figures cut off from their surroundings, the politics will no longer be a byword for sleaze, dirt and scandals and the democracy will no longer remain the fiefdom of few dynastic despots or casteist-communal demagogues; the rules of the game will change forever.
That’s why the ascendance in power of the Aam Aadmi Party, which embodies the collective anger, frustration and disenchantment of the nation, is a unique moment in Indian democracy whose importance lies in its momentous existence in power. History lies in these very moments. It’s outcome is not that important.
The dreams of the Pied piper of Delhi will come to reality sooner or later.