The following comment was published on The FOI Advocate
The official blog of the National Freedom of Information Coalition and the FOI ADVOCATE, in which we bring news of freedom of information developments far and wide... NFOIC is a coalition of state groups dedicated to open government, headquartered at the Missouri School of Journalism.
Even while the Indian political leadership spins technicolour dreams of 21st century superpowerdom, its "politics" are mired in the medieval anachronisms of what I have called the "patronage paradigm - the paradigm of shoddiness, irresponsibility, cronyism and corruption, that has cretinised us all".
In India today, a culture of profiting from deceit,dysfunctionality and decay is flourishing.
In this culture of perversity, monstrous behavior is the ticket to wealth and domination.
In India today, the "Common Man" - a typically feudal pejorative - who 'aspires' to be an intelligent citizen might be labelled "goody-goody", ostracised and brutally killed.
It takes a whole village and the recently exposed Ruchika Girhotra case and my own experience indicate that checks and balances have collapsed and coalesced into one corrupt predatory ruling class.
Since the past two decades, the Government of India, the Government of my own state, Andhra Pradesh, the Andhra Pradesh High Court , the Chief Information Commissioner and State Information Commissioner have combined to impress on me that what works in India is the "patronage paradigm" - and that ideas of the rule of law and democratic processes are merely spectacles to lull the gullible.
I have been denied the recognition that were commended to me.
I have been unable to earn a decent living.
The office of the Governor of Andhra Pradesh incited my neighbours to cut off my water supply.
The information commissions in the state and at the centre denied me my right to information on spurious, brazenly illegal grounds and punished me for daring to object.
The Andhra Pradesh High Court, in the inimitable manner of the Indian judiciary, has misbehaved egregiously.
The high court denied me my right to competent counsel and punished me for complaining.
Even as we speak, Dr Manmohan Singh's office, "Daredevil" Pratibha Patil's Rashtrapati Bhavan, Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah, State Information Commissioner CD Arha are all in an obvious conspiracy to deny me justice.
In my experience India's editorial class is as dense, amoral and narcissistic.
Variations of this comment have appeared in almost every major Indian online publication plus in a few abroad.
However, not a single editor or reporter has had the professionalism to pick it up and make it "impact".
My credentials are strong and I have taken much trouble to meet many editors personally, usually on impeccable referrals.
Our "know-it-all-in -chiefs" have had nothing but smirks to offer.
When I sought the solidarity of the press, Shekhar Gupta (editor in chief of New Indian Express) advised me, "You cannot go around taking pangas (quarrels) with people, yaar."
Even my comments are mutilated.
Vinod Mehta's "Outlook" has banned my comments on risible grounds.
The Hindu crawled.
It published "spin" by corrupt officials and got hissy with me for pointing out, with evidence, its craven, yellow soul.
The Indian Press (with a solitary exception) blacked out the fervent open letter written by Padma Vibhushan Kaloji Narayana Rao.
That dear man , clear as a bell in his nineties, had laid his head on my shoulder, hugged me and wept.
In India today, it is difficult to tell the difference between policeman and journalist and fixer, politician and criminal, lawyer and judge, Indian Administrative Service Officer and the village idiot.
But they all are laughing all the way to their offshore accounts.
If you would like to know about the sheer impossibility of living a good life in India, you and your esteemed visitors may want to visit and participate at sathyagraha.blogspot.com
Andhra Pradesh High Court’s Pernicious Rebellion Against The Law .05/29/09
RTI Act 2005 Abuse In Andhra Pradesh- SIC Cheats! Chief Secretary Lies!05/07/09
Prejudiced CIC Laps Up PMO Lies 05/05/09
Divakar S Natarajan and Varun Gandhi Cannot Both Be Wrong ! 01/28/09
And India’s editorial class will not report the story!
News and views from Divakar S Natarajan’s, “no excuses”, ultra peaceful, non partisan, individual sathyagraha against corruption and for the idea of the rule of law in India.
Now in its 18th year.
Any struggle against a predatory authority is humanity's struggle to honour the gift of life.