Most of us talk about corruption in
India and most of us are apt to pinpoint corrupt politicians as the root cause of all problems in . Little realised in the fact, the these politicians rise to ranks from the masses and if corruption is common in politician, its because its common in men. India
I once asked a close Marvadi friend, if he keeps black money. He replied yes, upon which I asked him being so educated why you should continue to involve in such practises. He said blankly, “We are not interested in indulging in such practises. But are you aware that at every point we are forced to cough up our hard-earned money to so many officials without any official purpose? If I don’t have this kind of money, I can’t have even a decent life. But atleast I have decided in personal front, that the moment I needn’t cough up money unnecessarily, I shall give up this practise”.
In the struggle for Indian freedom, Gandhiji was correct to dismiss the ideology of revolutionaries whose agenda was to eliminate few elite officers to create terror. However insofar as the system itself is concerned, X is replaced by Y and Y becomes the new X. The system was intact. Killing top officials may create terror, yet another person soon replaces the dead and we remain to be prisoners of system.
Most of the intelligence organizations do the same. Mossad of Israel is notorious for having eliminated all top leaders around the region to maintain their supremacy. Apart from the moral aspect of cold killing, this is in long run highly useless. Leaders are born out of system, and soon, most of them were replaced by leaders as much effective.
Going back to medieval ages, the continual subjugation of masses was maintained intact through the feudal system. Knowledge was concentrated in the hands of few. As long as the system remained unbroken, superficial changes were of no avail. Man is a product of his environment and if the environment encourages discrimination, nothing can prevent him from doing so. Hence, the invention of printing technology created ripples down the system, and masses were soon informed of their misery and developments worldwide inspired many others.
Going back much beyond, in the age when men were hunters, food was scarce and might was right, it was alright to kill someone for trifling causes. The system encouraged this practise; only when men began farming, and when survival became a bit easier, we established a stricter moral code. Through farming, the system itself was shattered to pieces.
Coming back to Industrial age of 17th century
Europe, the new system made it impossible for the feudal system to remain unharmed. The new system required mass scale immigration and it followed that landlords were no longer as powerful as before. The new age lords were capitalists. This system too remained intact for two centuries.
The power (wealth) remains concentrated in the hands of few capitalists and the rest were immensely poor. For all the success of Communism across world, this fundamental nature of Industrial System made it impossible to distribute wealth more equitably.
This remained more or less the same (irrespective of the economic ideology) because huge difference was integral to the system. Not until the rise of Knowledge based economy, these differences collapsed bit by bit.
We, Indians make a huge and costly error of believing that if a certain section of people – politicians are better, then
will improve. The system continues because we give it sanctity at every point in life. India
Movies like Tagore, Oke Okkadu, Bharateeyudu etc wrongly depict that
would strike gold the moment few elitists change(or forced to change). It’s something like dowry system; we cry aloud when we are at receiving end, and yet we happily wish to benefit from it whenever occasion arises. The system is finally on decline mainly because women are better educated and economically independent these days. India
The system which doesn’t punish wrongdoers without delay is infact encouraging to many others to commit wrongs. The system which doesn’t reward honestly indirectly rewards corrupt practises.
I personally see a Leader as the person who breaks the system. Who unchains us from the prison of System. He is more like a midwife who understands the Spirit of the Age and brings in change.
PS: Leadership is one of the most fascinating things psychologically, philosophically and socially. I would like to bring in my views on this soon.