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.
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.