Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Letter to the PM

Dear Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh,

I write to you today as an Indian citizen. I write as a victim of

terrorism and corruption. I write as a citizen who can not write to

anyone else. I write to you as the voice of youth. I turn to you as

the only hope and as the last resort. I have very simple and specific

questions to which none of your fellow politicians seem to give a

straight answer.

1) Ten men walked into the streets of my city and killed hundreds

before they were stopped. I am an ordinary person who never carries a

gun, I am curious to know how should I defend my life when even law

enforcement officers of my city are outgunned by terrorists. I am an

educated person and my assessment of the failures of 26th Nov 2008 is

grim and leaves me no hope. What is perhaps more tragic is that I have

little hope of justice. Yes, I agree India is a huge nation with a

billion people and as many problems, but are you honestly telling me -

that we as Indian citizens have been deprived of our right to live, to

exist?? I am a kind person and do not remember to have harmed anyone

on purpose - I wanted to know at what point did you decide that I have

become expendable??

2) The security failures, administrative lapses and organizational

break downs that enabled 26/11 to happen are not aberrant instances.

They are the cumulative effect of criminal negligence. I want to know

what was the aggregate result of Indian Intelligence and Law

Enforcement efforts while terrorist networks across the world were

developing sophisticated pipelines of money and recruits. What were

the steps you employed to ensure LeT does not acquire money through

fake masks of charity organizations. I want to know what the Indian

government (irrespective of the party in power) was doing as Dawood

Ibrahim created an infrastructure of organized crime. Did you know

that almost every stream of day to day life is infected with this

poison? From the cable internet provider to the builder of a new

multiplex, from a Bollywood Actor to a successful Doctor, everyone

pays money in extortion to the underworld. Even the simple water

bottle sold at a local railway station for the marked up price is

contributing towards seed money for terrorism. And I as a citizen have

no practical avenue to fight back.

3) I thought of filing a case, against all of these people paying the

underworld, but I have learnt that even if all Indian courts stopped

accepting new cases and worked at their current pace, they would take

300 years to clear the backlog before they can hear my voice, and I am

certain I won't live 300 years. I am curious to know what was the

Indian Government doing as it let the judicial system slip into a

paralysis. At this point, I am citizen with no right to justice, which

I guess matters little since, I am told, I don't have a right to live

in the first place.

4) I work hard eight hours a day and all my taxes are deducted before

I see my paycheck. I have to submit a weekly status of my work to my

superiors who monitor the correctness and pace of my work. I wish to

see the status reports of all the demons running my country. Tell me

sir, where can I find them?

5) As a child, I was taught 'Satyameva Jayate' as our motto. Yet, I

have come to find truth as the rarest commodity in the Indian

administration. Tell me sir is the Anti Corruption Bureau going to

deliver, or is altering school textbooks a better option??

I admit that none of the above was possible without a failure on my

part to act. But there is a difference between making mistakes in the

course of being human and between taking responsibilities for granted

and I have never done the latter.

I am willing if not eager to do anything it takes to help you solve

these problems. I kindly ask you to communicate your challenges openly

and honestly to the Indian people. I urge you to ask the entire nation

to join hands to help.

I come to you in desperation. I come to you with outstretched hands.

Please, please tell me what should I do, and how can I help. Sir, you

have the entire youth of a nation at your beckoning and we are

stretching out a hand, will you meet us half way and lead us on, or

shall we tell others - we have failed - shall we say - "No we can't??"

I honestly believe "Saare Jahan se Achha Hindustan Humara", I believe

in my India - do you??


- Sanket


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