Dare to Stand, Dare to Die?

I have always spoken how only writing about issues may not be enough. We may need to be part of the system, such as be in politics. Having said that, I have always known that it is easier said than done. One reason I can’t join politics is that I need a regular income to pay off my bills and loans. I don’t have enough money and time it takes to campaign. I am not alone in it, it is same with almost all of us aware citizens.

There is another bigger reason for our aversion to take part in Indian politics, which we all know but are shy to admit it. Standing up in political arena against corrupt biggies is also about risking your life. Just as Bahadur Sonkar, Lok Sabha (LS) candidate from Indian Justice Party (IJP) candidate found out hard way.

Bahadur,  a Dalit leader who was contesting in LS elections from Jaunpur constituency in Uttar Pradesh, was found hanging from a tree near his home on 14 April, 2009. His chief opponent was BSP’s Dhanajyay Singh, who is a Don-turned-politician.

blind-justice

Ironic considering BSP, supposedly a party that represents Dalits, had a Dalit opponent who was a thorn in its own candidate’s (who has a scintillating criminal record) side. IJP is a party founded by Udit Raj for Dalit causes. This party has weakened BSP’s voteplank in various places. Blame game has begun around Bahadur’s death, BSP blames SP.

It is said that Bahadur had been repeatedly threatened not to contest the election. Police officer, whose duty should have been to protect him, had warned him “to be ready to face serious consequences.” A police circle officer Ditendra Chaudhary has been specifically named by a relative.

The deceased candidate Bahadur had informed election observers about the threats. He had also spoken to the media about the matter. Yet his murder hasn’t gotten the attention as it should have. Police investigation is still at zero, if they could have it they would call it suicide. This murder has gone largely unnoticed. I, too had missed the news, had it not been for the mention by my friend Shilpa while we were discussing politics.

It is unfortunate irony of Indian politics that candidates who may have won with public support are done away with even before they can contest due to rampant corruption, power-wrestling and poor law enforcement. We have draconian law for terrorists but what about our own home-grown corrupt politicians who do more harm than terrorists? A probable good candidate is dead, candidate will criminal record will go on to fight and perhaps win election. A mockery of democracy and our justice system. Law is certainly blind. And so are we. 😦

Law is blind picture courtsey Double Action.
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27 Responses to “Dare to Stand, Dare to Die?”


  1. 1 sakhi April 23, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    😦 what can i say?? Its not the first of its kind and yet it shouldn’t be taken in our stride… God save our country!

  2. 2 praneshachar April 23, 2009 at 5:37 pm

    yes it is one out of thousands of incidents happening across this country. criminalisation of politics has gone to the worst in the recent past. MM money and muscle power are playing their own role and yes many like Poonam who wants can not get into this politics which is filled with lot of bad elements. Honesty is best policy was taught but now who is honest where is honesty we hv to literally search in political arena
    Bahadur live upto his name and sacrificed his life. how many bahadurs have to die to make this country bahadur god only knows.
    It is an irony we are all part of this system.
    It is high time more and more youth who are committed take up to politics and change our goveranance in the days to come so that the culture and heritage for which this gr8 country was famous is maintained. I dont know whether I am dreaming even if so it is better to dream, some day dream will turn to relaity or near to that
    committimnet of you for social cause and soceity is gr8
    keep the spirits
    have a gr8 time ahead
    pranesh

  3. 3 Mahendra April 23, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    This certainly did not go unnoticed, but was forgotten quickly. There was considerable coverage, debate, and outrage, but like most other issues, got drowned in the drain.

  4. 4 smitha April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Yes, it did not go unnoticed – but definitely quickly forgotten! Nothing more than a cursory mention.. And whatever that can be said of the corrupt politicians and corrupt police.. it amazes me that the mainstream media is quiet about it as well… Shouldn’t they be raising these incidents and tracking them to closure? Instead they are very busy discussing numbers and who said what to whom… We are all indeed blind…

  5. 5 Quirky Indian April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    “We have draconian law for terrorists but what about our own home-grown corrupt politicians who do more harm than terrorists? A probable good candidate is dead, candidate will criminal record will go on to fight and perhaps win election. A mockery of democracy and our justice system. Law is certainly blind. And so are we. :(”

    You have said it all, Poonam. Nothing to add to this!

    Quirky Indian

  6. 6 Ava April 24, 2009 at 7:53 am

    The thing is, aam junta is clueless about what they can do. Remember how people reacted when they discovered they could mobilise things by a candlelight vigil when Jessica killer was let off? For a while, even the bar that Manu Sharma runs in Chandigarh was BANNED by public. That is the spirit needed, not to mention a good leader to be able to motivate the public. Sigh ! until then…

  7. 7 Solilo April 24, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    You have said it all, Poonam. Many times people are just scared to react and don’t bother because it is not them. It is not easy either because laws and regulations are twisted in a way that it can harm the one raising voice.

  8. 8 vimmuuu April 24, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    This is why I keep saying that its time we revamp the entire judiciary system in our country. Some of our laws are still according to the old British laws that were brought in. For example, you kill a person by a road accident and you get bail by paying a very small fee in the court. The Britishers brought this rule long long ago so that they can get away easily on such situations by paying just a meger amount every time they hit and kill someone on the road.

    Speaking of police, politicians and their horrendous activities are giving them more headache than those who break the law n order.

    I havnt read or seen this news anywhere before. Thanks for bringing it up here.

  9. 9 amreekandesi April 25, 2009 at 12:37 am

    It is true that we are fast becoming a jungle raj where any honest voice is either ignored, or crushed. I did read this news item, and its a complete shocker.

    I have given some thought to actually jumping in and try doing something, but am not so sure what or how to do. Firstly it is very hard for an individual to come up with the sort of muscle (financial) needed to pose a meaningful threat in an election (I have read figures of tens of crores being spent in the name of campaigning, and i am definitely not that rich).
    Now by whatever method even if you do get elected, what are you but a single voice in 543? What difference can you make?

  10. 10 eye-in-sty-in April 25, 2009 at 8:59 am

    There is a jago party – jago.co.in
    They are planning on contesting and have educated candidates with a clean (read jail free) track record!
    Check them out.

  11. 11 Suvarna Singh April 25, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Friends!
    Enough is enough. For once please make some sense. I mean you people literally embodies the distilled spirit of the verb called baqar. Koi kaam dhaam nahin. Koi actual(or factual) value addition nahi. I mean getting the cyberspace free ensures that you can waste it the way you like. SO much like the Fab India Marxists!.U always hav many excuses for not taking a step head, so u dont take the step and keep blaming the things the way they are and why they are.The path could never be free of hurdles and only those who have the guts could travel it.

    • 12 oorja April 25, 2009 at 2:02 pm

      does having the guts equal to dying..?

      it is not that easy if you see prctically. it is easy to say to take a step. we all want to. we too can’t tolerate what is going on.

      i think this cyber space is not being wasted. it is on the path of a revolution. we are uniting. As to take a group step foreward we need to unite amongst ourselves first. trust each other. be there for each other. and that is what we are building here.

      it may take some time. but what you are asking for will happen. Mr.Muthalik did recieve a bundle of Pink underpants. and i see that as a beginging.

      it will happen, i am starting to believe. hope you join in too.

  12. 13 Amit April 25, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    We are moving towards the stone age. Let’s see what these elections bring.

  13. 14 gauri April 28, 2009 at 12:52 am

    Well said, Poonam.

    But on or two good candidates in a host of muck is not going to to do it. What we need is an entire generation educated and made aware of politics from a very early age; an entire body of sincere youth wanting to make a change and standing up to the system. It will take time, yes but better late than never.

    g

  14. 15 Vee April 28, 2009 at 5:28 am

    I did not vote for the criminal though he belongs to the party I favor. Sometimes, more than whom you want to see at the center, whom you want to see in your close quarter matters.

  15. 16 Prerna April 28, 2009 at 7:24 pm

    Poonam, as long as our criminal justice system is sluggish incidents like these will keep occurring.

  16. 17 vishesh unni raghunathan April 28, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    who told we have draconian law for terrorists? You give them an AC room , a lawyer , books what not and then the lawyer says that fellow is a minor blah blah….see…its equity , he gets the same things as most politicians would …

  17. 18 Indian Homemaker April 28, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    I had seen the news and had found it shocking and very sad for our Democracy too. I doubt if anybody will be convicted or even if there will be any investigation.

    No wonder we feel disheartened and refuse to vote! I was asking a friend in UP who she was going to vote for and she said none were worth voting so none 😦
    There has to be a another, better way…

  18. 19 Suvarna Singh April 29, 2009 at 11:59 am

    I think ‘no vote’ is not the solution rather it’s a cause of the problem.I do agree most of the candidates in the fray dont deserve to be elected or if i assume that none of them deserve to be elected, even in that case our’s one vote could probably stop the most undeserving among them.So think rationally and exercise the option in hand till their is a better way.

  19. 20 Smita April 29, 2009 at 11:06 pm

    I remember putting up looong comment, now I can’t see it here…darn my office firewalls!!!

    All I wud say is that for all the development we talk about voting still happens on the basis of caste and the interiors of India are as backward as they cud be…

    Sadly our enlightened media can not see beyond TRPs

  20. 21 manushee May 6, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    …after all this..i still have voted this year like a sincere citizen…i agree with you…its easy to point fingers at others…if i didn’t have responsibilities or was one bit selfless i would have given civil services exam and maybe helped my country in some way…but i didn’t. I think that its solely OUR fault when we don’t have worthy people to vote for…its US as citizens who have backed off from our responsibilities.

  21. 22 manushee May 6, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    …after all this..i still have voted this year like a sincere citizen……its easy to point fingers at others…if i didn’t have responsibilities or was one bit selfless i would have given civil services exam and maybe helped my country in some way…but i didn’t. I think that its solely OUR fault when we don’t have worthy people to vote for…its US as citizens who have backed off from our responsibilities.

  22. 23 manushee May 6, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    btw…i deleted my previous blog…now writing at… http://deepdeepdown.wordpress.com do visit me some time 🙂

  23. 24 Reema May 8, 2009 at 11:38 pm

    oh my god! I am getting to read all sorts of terrible news at your blog today. Never knew about this one too!

  24. 25 Destination Infinity July 18, 2009 at 8:36 am

    When a candidate having criminal records is voted to power, then law is not blind: WE ARE BLIND. It’s Demo’crazy’.

    Destination Infinity

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