When Citizens Lead

In India a common man or aam admi is just a catchphrase to garner votes, nothing more, this the politicians from all parties have taught us.

When it comes to peoples issues and needs no politician cares but when it comes to their needs …. nothing comes in the way be it money, starving farmers , public inconvenience hawkers or vote bank politics, or just about nything…

Our politicians are no more Gandhian either in their mindset or in their dress style with brands like Gucchi, Armani and Pathek Phillip being a la mode – Gandhi is just a buzz word to garner votes.

Finally when it comes to strikes and shutdowns they lead the pack in vandalism, arson and dadagiri – reminds u of the Sena doesn’t it but it has an image it likes to maintain, infact the sena is so organised at strikes and shutdowns that they seem less brutal than the Dmk, Aidmk or the Akalis and Communists. The smartest of the lot is of course the grand old party of India which seems to come out unscathed many a times even after vicious and violent reprisals.

I guess its now time, and it is time they learn and that too from the citizens they claim to represent. Im talking about the Citizens of the Most taxpaying city in India , Mumbai and to be specific of the Dahisar- Virar Belt represented by our very secular but incompetant politician cum (over) actor Govinda.  On Monday, World Human Rights Day they held a novel protest, a nonviolent protest for a decent non hazardous comute and to demand their human rights to a fair and safe travel to work , … read the Toi

Around 5 lakh of Western Railway’s 32.5 lakh daily commuters stay on the Dahisar-Virar stretch and an overwhelming number responded to the train-boycott call given by the Pravaas Adhikar Andolan Samiti (PAAS). Churchgate-bound trains originating from Virar and Bhayandar, each used to transporting around 5,000 people during the rush hours, ferried a couple of hundred commuters

A spokesman of ‘Pravasi Adhikar Aandolan Samiti’ (PAAS) said it was totally a Gandhian protest for, no train was forcibly stopped or stoned and no commuter was prevented from boarding a train. “But nobody boarded as our volunteers picketing at stations requested them to boycott the services in support of our demand for a train every five minutes during the peak hours,” said Shailendra Kamble of the PAAS.

Malad resident and teacher of an engineering college in Vasai, Vaishali Maskar, was one such peaceful protester. She came to Borivli station unaware of the boycott call. But, once she learned about the issues involved, she found it difficult to ignore the call. Maskar, like lakhs of other commuters, returned home.

“My work can wait but an improvement in travelling conditions is an absolute must,” she said.

Maskar was not exaggerating. Thousands of commuters die every year on Mumbai’s trains; most fall off while boarding or after boarding as they fight for some square centimetre of imagined space. The death count this year has already crossed 2,900. WR, thankfully, did not use force against protesters on Monday. The last such people’s agitation, on the same day in December 2005, ended in violence as police — adding insult to injury — lobbed tear-gas shells and cane-charged demonstrators.

I know how hard it is to travel and have written about it a couple of times, and wonder how these people can manage. Ive always been very shocked and angry at the callous attitude of the babus and Rail Mantris including the current Laloo Yadav, who expect Mumbai to take in the influx of the North Indian immigrant but doesnt do anything to increase the infrastructure and hold him and the Central Govt as much responsible for the massive casualty numbers due to overcrowding of the multiple train blasts as the islamic terrorists from huji etc and their local supporters .

Come to think of it is there something wrong with our democracy is it by the people, from the people, for the politicians?

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3 thoughts on “When Citizens Lead

  1. Nice post Prax. It is really disheartening isn’t it and consumers are left wondering why! I don’t have too much faith in Laloo, he just wants to make money and show how shiny the railway balance sheet is.

    10yrs down the line the same balance sheet will be saddled with high cost or new rails thanks to this policy which is without foresight
    thanks nita

  2. Mostly the political parties call for a bandh or hartal and ‘request’ the public to participate. This ‘request’ is often enforced !
    Finally I was able to hear about a protest that is a true Gandhian way of protesting.

    Great post Prax !

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