[ Just to refresh memory or for the sake of those who may not be aware at all I have been into activism for a very long time now and have clearly realised that the need of the hour is to be active in politics to make a larger difference. Having held the view since long and in the post 26/11 scenario I contested LS 2009 and secured 3301 votes]
I have been getting a lot of queries about am I contesting the coming elections? What is Jago doing? Is it fielding any candidates? If not then how does it expect to be seen as a serious contender? etc.
My thinking on this is borne from my experiences from the previous election. Clearly my conviction that I am good leadership material for the country remains. But along with that is a realization that it takes two hands to clap.
If I think that I can provide good political leadership for the country then there has to be the flip side to it in terms of a demand for good leaders and not just demand but a decent level of support for them as well. And yes speaking specifically an appreciation and support for the excellent work I have already done till now (no humility lost in patting yourself on the back once in a while). A comprehensive listing of my comments in media on some issues is here –
Since it is cricket season I keep coming to my bete noire. Are good cricket players and good cricket more important for the country or good politicians and governance? And it is not an either or question. We can very well be enjoying our cricket and be taking good interest in the governance and politics of the country.
But the average man on the street would spend 100’s of his man hours on cricket, some money as well and nothing commensurable on good governance and good leaders. Not just the average man, even within the 3301 people who voted for me or the 188 odd who are on my Facebook support group, how many came back to check on the way ahead? How many keep a tab on the scores and player selection and Dhoni’s health on a daily basis.? Cricket versus good governance?
[cricket and excessive cricket watching anyways I feel is one of the bigger of many reasons for the state of this country]
And because millions are willing to give their eye balls and man hours to cricketers, one finds companies paying them sky rocketing sums to endorse projects, if what they get paid to play per match was not good enough. So much money that they do not know what to do with it.
Now if I were to devote my self to give good governance and understand legislation and improve on it and ensure better utilization of public tax payers money – what do I get?
Can I please get funds for a working secretariat. Can I please get even one twentieth of the time you give to cricket? Can you please help reach out to people? Publicity?
(And I have along with a very small group been doing yeoman service to the city by questioning the award of the outrageous Rs. 3,500 crores for remedying the Deonar garbage dump when significantly cheaper options are available. All this while even the average governance activist is completely clueless.)
The last election left me with three months of lost income and a fair share of expenses from my pocket as well, all of which completely delayed my plans to be into green business and left me financially in dire straits.
Thus if you play cricket well you get rewarded so well that beyond a point you have too much. And if you think about how your city’s taxes are used and how the average man at the railways station feels, or how are the footpaths and the urinals and do our municipal school children deserve a better deal and how our energy efficiency, renewable energy and green buildings policy can be a lot better you dont get as much as a 100 rupee note accidentally.
I think good people get good leaders and deserve good leaders. Opium addicts who would care a damn about the state of things around them – only their daily fix – don’t. That I feel is the state of 99 percent of our citizens today – consumed by cricket and many other worthless wasteful addictions.
And it makes more sense to either spend time on rehabilitating the opium addicts or waiting for their rehab to happen before starting to seek their votes.
[I have been thinking of alternatively naming this post “Politiking in the midst of opium addicts” ]