The last one-and-a-half years in India have been defined by the anti-graft agitation led by Anna Hazare. His key lieutenant, Arvind Kejriwal, has played a central. Swaraj is a book by the Indian social activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal, who credits Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version. Swaraj book. Read 80 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. The year was defined by the Anna Hazare-led agitation against corruptio.
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Swaraj - By Arvind Kejriwal - English - Download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or Why This Book I was working for the income tax department earlier. paid a. Swaraj by Arvind Kejriwal shows us the way forward, what we the people and what the opinion makers and political establishment in India can do to achieve true. 17 computerescue.info(book) Hindi Version E-book //07/ Swaraj-By-Arvind- computerescue.info English Version E-book.
Though it was honed over time as political innovation to discipline his own followers, and became a central feature of Gandhian satyagraha 2 , he never employed fasting as a political weapon directed at the State Rao Jr.
Contrast this with the fifteen-day fast undertaken by Kejriwal, a diabetic, to protest against the high power tariff in the national capital.
“Swaraj – Power to the people”: Book By Arvind Kejriwal, Download
By no stretch of imagination was it a spiritual exercise—it was an unambiguous action against the State, in this case, the Delhi government. Noted author and political activist Arundhati Roy was also harshly critical of the fast undertaken by Anna Hazare to pressurise the Government into passing an anti-corruption legislation, the movement which eventually resulted in the birth of AAP.
Imagine Gandhi going to a private hospital after his fast. A private hospital that symbolises the withdrawal of the state from healthcare for the poor. A private hospital where the doctors charge a lakh every time they inhale and exhale. In fact, certain commentators like Parsa Venkateshwar Rao Jr.
The Lokpal Bill: prevention or cure? The abovementioned anti-corruption legislation which Hazare, Kejriwal, and others attempted to push forth was the Jan Lokpal Bill 4 , proposing the appointment of an independent body to investigate corruption cases. The draft legislation sought unprecedented powers for this body, the Jan Lokpal, including the authority to investigate, survey, and prosecute every official in the judiciary, legislature, and executive.
Effectively, all of these sweeping powers were to be centred in the hands of one panel chosen for the purpose. Roy in effect seems to be cautioning us that the Jan Lokpal Bill is merely a myopic remedy, ineffective in addressing the deeper problems plaguing the nation. Therefore, it would seem that the Lokpal Bill is a mere short-term cure rather than a far-sighted attempt to prevent the ills the party has set out to crusade against. But the forest was declared as national property by the government and the tribal for whom it had been a home for centuries were declared criminals by a simple law.
Officials and minions of the forest department come and harass the tribal of the villages. Since these people do not posses the documentary evidence of the ownership of land on which they live, their occupation of the land is treated as unlawful. The officials of the forest department stop them from tilling their land, collecting wood from the forest or collecting flowers and seeds and do not allow them to let their cattle graze on the land.
Their fields are mowed down by elephants. The soil is spoilt by throwing thorny seeds of babool. These people are beaten up and their crop is destroyed and many times the police arrest them.
It seems ironical but as long as the forests were home and natural habitat to the tribal it was a forest but as soon as it was declared a national treasure it has started shrinking and is on the verge of extinction. Forest officials, contractors and politicians all in connivance with each other are looting and plundering this national wealth, and all in the name of duty.
Swaraj by Arvind Kejriwal
Every year the government gives out contract to take out Tendu leaves from the forest. Every contractor gets contract for bags of Tendu leaves.
But officials of forest department are given bribes and how much the contractor takes out no one knows. Even a small contractors earns upto rupees fifteen lac per year. But the adivasi is paid only thirty naya paisa for each bundle of tendu leaves. Under the pressure of Naxalites, now that rate has been increased to one rupee. The government gives out contracts to paper mills to cut several lac tones of bamboo from the forest at hugely cheap rates.
However, the paper mills give contract to adivasis at a rate of ten to twenty naya paisa per bundle. This way paper mills corner huge profits. These are but a few of the methods being used to deplete the green cover and we have no control over this.
“Swaraj – Power to the people”: Book By Arvind Kejriwal, Download
Water Water works operated by the government in many cities are being sold to foreign companies making water their property. In Delhi also water distribution system was being sold to foreign companies who would have charged its citizens money for every drop of water. There was an uproar from the citizens of Delhi after which the scheme to sell the water works has been put on hold. The rivers of the country are being sold.
Shivnath river in Chattisgarh has been sold to a company. Now the people of that region have to pay money for the use of water for irrigation, drinking and even for washing clothes.
The indiscriminate use of river water is past history now. Dams are being constructed on all major rivers of the country. There are so many dams that are being constructed on Ganges that its existence is threatened. Soon it would become a trickle in the plains of the country.
We do understand that we need electricity but indiscriminate use of a natural resource raises more problems than it solves. There are certain countries where there are laws to protect unfettered flow of a river. In our country the speed with which contracts have been awarded to private companies to build Dams over river, it seems the political leaders are more interested in the kickbacks that they get from such contracts rather than produce electricity.
The pace of such construction would seriously affect the flow of water in the plains of the country. By the examples given above it is clear that natural resources of the country are at peril under the political parties, corrupt leaders and the government servants.
Something will have to be done quickly failing which entire country would be sold out. Is this Democracy?
We as citizens have no control over the governance of the country. There is a free for all loot prevalent in the working of the government departments and we have no control over it. We have no control over the government funds. We have no say in the formation of the government policies. We have no control over the process of creation of laws. We cannot question the actions taken by the parliament or the state assemblies because we as citizens have no control.
We have no control over the sale of our own properties, over the mindless exploitation of our national wealth like minerals, forests, water and other natural resources. The country is for sale and we citizens stand by like mute spectators, helpless but angry. Is this the Democracy we had opted for?
Is this the democracy that gives us right only to vote that too once in five years, elect our representatives and give them free rein or run to do what suits them. Is this the democracy we wanted where we pawn our ambitions, aspirations, national wealth and our welfare in the hands of greedy and avaricious political leaders and their equally greedy and avaricious government stooges, who do not care?
This cannot be democracy.
Needless to say there is an inherent fault in the whole system. The fundamental problem is that this country does not have a democracy. We need a democracy. The politics of voting for your representatives once in five years cannot go on. Now the citizens of this country need to be partners in sharing the power that the government has.
The representatives who are selected by us with our votes must be answerable to us for all their acts of omission and commission. The government servants who are paid salaries through the taxes that the government collects from us are our servants and must be accountable and subservient to us the citizens. The decisions on what to do and what not to do should be taken by the people. Political parties, political leaders and government agencies should only implement them.
What we need is change in the way we operated for last sixty three years. It is argued that people would fight amongst each other and would never be able to come to a decision.
Citizens have been taking decisions for many years in our country. It is a pity that we have forgotten our own history. From where did we adopt democracy? Some say that we learnt of democracy from the US and some say that we learnt it from England. But the truth is that democracy has been there in our country from the times of Gautam Budha.
Democracy then was far more powerful than it is today. Vaishali was the first Democracy of the world. Democratic traditions are ingrained in our psyche and, therefore, we chose democracy naturally after independence in A Kings son used to succeed the king. There were no election to choose the king but at the same time the King did not have absolute power. All decisions were taken by the gram sabhas. Whatever the people of the village wanted the gram Sabha wanted the same.
The king had no options but to accede to the wishes of the people. Today we elect our king once in five years but the king is not in our control.
In ancient time people did not choose the king but the king was under their control. There is an anecdote connected with Vaishali. One day a Sabha was organized which was attended by the citizens and the King presided the meeting. Citizens proposed that a certain woman become the Nagar vadhu. That woman accepted but on the condition that she would be given Palace of the king as her living quarters. The proposal was accepted by the majority of the citizens and the Palace of the king was allotted to the Nagar Vadhu.
The king objected as the Palace was his living quarter. The people argued that the Palace was constructed with the tax paid by the people to the king and therefore, they were the real owners of the Palace.
The wishes of the people prevailed. The king vacated the Palace and built a new Palace for himself. It is a different matter that making a woman Nagar Vadhu was a wrong practice, even then.
But the point that is being driven home by this example is to depict the power of people in the prevalent political system.
They do not have even two meters of space that they can call their own. Their existence is like insects fostering in dirt and grime.
Each hut sometimes has ten people living in it. All ministers and government officers live in large bungalows all over Delhi. If such a thing happens suddenly Delhi will have sufficient land available to create colonies that can house all the poor. If we as citizens propose that the president, ministers and government officers living in their sprawling houses should shift to smaller accommodation, will they ever listen?
No, never. That was democracy when people after passing a resolution could ask its king to vacate his palace. Today we have no democracy when we are unable to even get a road fixed up in front of our house by passing a majority vote or to fix up a teacher who is not doing his duty or a doctor of a government hospital who is incompetent and lazy. Such a democracy continued until when people took administrative decisions directly which were implemented by the king.
Villagers had direct control over the administrative decisions about the village. Villagers had direct control over the format of education they wanted.
They had direct control over the decision to means and type of irrigation that was suitable to their village. They were in control over their own health services. Our country was invaded many a times but they captured only the capital cities and did not disturb the working of the villages. They increased or decreased the tax of a village sitting in the capital but they did not meddle with the affairs of the village.
Lord Metcalf, the Governor General of India, wrote in that the foundation of this country is its village sabhas. The people of village meet at a common point and take joint decisions. In the British brought in a law that destroyed the village sabhas because they had understood that until this foundation is destabilized, they cannot rule India effectively. A law was enacted to bring in the collector raj. All rights that the people had or the village sabhas had, were snatched from them and given to the British collectors.
Earlier the villagers ran the establishment for irrigation which the British started to control through an irrigation department. The villagers earlier had education establishment under their control. Now the British formed an Education department. All areas of life and living were now controlled by British through one or the other government department. On top of all the government departments was a white man who was known as The Collector or Burra Sahib.
It is bad luck that though we got independence in yet the rights of the people were not returned. The rights of village sabhas were not returned. We replaced the British collector with an Indian. We kept all the paraphernalia of the British government as it is: Its arrogance, its un approachability, its mentality of being a ruler. The Indian collector, nay a bureaucrat, is still the Burra sahib. Untill and unless the rights of the people are not returned to the people there is no hope of reform.
There is no hope of freedom to the people. Through the panchayati raj the villagers are connected with the government. The anomaly is that after independence in the name of panchayati raj the kind of set up that is created fosters corruption because it gives the rights and power to the political leaders, government officers instead of people.
Instead of strengthening the administration on the village level, unfortunately panchayats have become a conduit of implementing various schemes of state government.
The schemes are made either in the center or in the capitals of state governments. Panchayats are given orders to only implement them. These schemes sometimes have no relevance to ambitions and aspirations of the people. There are many anomalies in the panchayati raj administration.
Broadly the following strangulate the systems capabilities. Panchayats have very few rights and powers. There is no control what so ever of the panchayats on government employees and government funds.
Whatever rights that have been given to the panchayats, vest with the pradhan or the sarpanch. The Sarpanch is the soul of the panchayat. All decisions are taken by him. Gram sabhas or people have no right to veto his decision. In, The Gram Sabha can give suggestion to the sarpanch. However, the sarpanch is free to either accept or reject their advice.
Therefore, most of the sarpanchs have become corrupt. And the people are not empowered to take any action against them.
Only the Collector has been empowered to take action against an incompetent, irresponsible and corrupt sarpanch. The Collector can initiate any action against the sarpanch.
He can also suspend him. Therefore, most of the sarpanchs are scared of the Collector and the Block Development Officer, who is a subordinate of the Collector. The Collector of a district is an employee of the state government, in much the same way as the Governor is an employee of the central government. Fortunately, the Governor does not have any rights to interfere in the affairs of the state government.
Unfortunately, the Collector has unlimited power to interfere in the affairs of the state government. The state governments, therefore, through the Collector interferes in the affairs of the Gram Sabha or the people.
Let us see some of the anomalies of the present Panchayat Raj. Tree Plantation Campaign in Bhondsi Village In a village people need water for irrigation and drinking, health services and hospitals, schools and colleges, electricity and many more. As it was mentioned before, every aspect of life and living is controlled by a government department.
Each department functions independently. The road department has no connection with the sanitation department. Health department has no connection with the education department.
The water department has no connection with the horticulture department Each department has certain milestones to achieve during one financial year. The village of Bhondsi near Delhi had very few trees, so the forest department was given the task of planting trees. The work was not carried out properly. It was handled by inept and inefficient employees of the government and the target was nowhere near completion.
To complete the target in a short time seeds were sprinkled over large tract of land from a helicopter. The seeds were of Keekar tree that grows very fast. The forest department had to show that they have been able to plant a forest.
The forest department did not bother that Keekar consumes a lot of water which it sucks from its land. The water table fell drastically in Bhondsi disrupting the water management. There was no participation of the people of Bhondsi.
No suggestions were taken from the people to find what kind of trees should be planted. Panchayat or the people have no control over any decision of any department whether good or bad. Garbage in the City of Kutumbakum Kutumbakum is a village near Chennai. The Tamil Nadu Government was searching land for dumping the garbage of six neighboring cities.
Some bright government officers identified a large tract of land, measuring about Acres, near this village which was used for grazing cattle. About cattle used to graze on this land. This land was then used for dumping the refuge of six cities.
Needless to mention the villagers of Kutumbakum were extremely angry. They were neither consulted nor were their wishes of having this land as a grazing ground given a thought. They had to hunt for fresh grazing ground. The garbage dumped near the village created a health hazard for the locals. But when the villagers filed a suit against the government, they lost, because the collector was well within his rights to acquire this land.
Is this what Panchayati Raj is? Where the panchayat has no power, the sarpanch has no power and not to mention the people have no power. Where the state government through the Collectors power can deprive the people of land and create a garbage dump against the wishes of their gram Sabha, the Sarpanch and the people.
There is no sanity in a system that over ride the wishes of its people A joke named NREGA National Rural Employment Guarantee This act guarantees hundred days of wage employment in a financial year to a rural household whose adult members offer to do unskilled manual work.
Thousands of crores have been allotted under this scheme to various states in the country. Hundreds of cases are coming up small and big where the wages are being paid to non existing ghost workers. Where the wages have been paid for the work are less than what should be paid under this scheme or the wages are paid for less number of days and claimed for hundred days by coterie of government officials right from district collector to BDO to Sarpanch.
Four percent of the allotted money is known as contingency fund that is specifically used for the welfare of women and children working under the schemes of NREGA.
This four percent is used for providing water and sanitation for the workers, welfare centres like a crche or a dispensary. In rural areas no such facilities are ever provided to the poor workers family. This contingency fund is siphoned off by the government officials who are connected with NREGA running into hundreds of crores. Government schemes are formulated at the centre or the state capitals. The funds that are made available under these schemes flow from top to the bottom.
Each official is hell bent on spending money on his level only. That money which is meant for the welfare of the people at the lowest rung never reaches them. Every official spends that money on his own level.
The poor worker does not know whom to make a complaint. The tax money paid by honest individuals is thus squandered on such grand schemes where government has no capability of implementing them. How can money be siphoned off on all levels is a question that comes to the mind so very often?
One of the biggest reasons is that there is no accountability of any government official. This is what needs to be corrected. Panchayats do not have authority to even download a broom If a Sarpanch does not attend gram Sabha meetings, is inept and corrupt then the Collector has the power to take action against the sarpanch. He can institute an inquiry or even remove him as sarpanch. But a collector has about thousand to two thousand villages under him and it is impossible for him to know how good or bad a sarpanch is; whether he is discharging his duties properly or not?
On the other hand the people of the village would. The power to take action against the sarpanch is not given to the people, when it should be rightfully theirs. Taking advantage of this fact many a collector has become corrupt and has started the tradition of taking protection money which in hindi is known as Hafta. No action is taken against the sarpanchs who pay this Hafta but false cases are initiated against the sarpanch who resist this protection money.
They are forced to tow the line and are made to do what is not right.
Swaraj - By Arvind Kejriwal - English
This example gives us an insight into the working of Panchayati raj system where politicians sitting at the state government levels can control the Sarpanch, the Pradhan and the leader of a village through the authority of Collector and make them dance to their wishes.
Though a contact is awarded by the U. In ,he resigned from the government.
Please read and send in your comments, also encorage your friends to read and get more insight. Swaraj — By Arvind Kejriwal — English. Swaraj — By Arvind Kejriwal — Hindi. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account.
Notify me of new comments via email. Create a free website or blog at WordPress. Main menu Skip to content.We can select leaders from one party or the other but the content of that political leader will not change. All the government officers, bureaucrats, the political leaders are actually your servants. It is seen in various districts of Uttar Pradesh that instead of transferring the allotted money of Education for all to the Village education fund this money is directly used by the state government.
These are things like soap, cooking oil, food stuff and others. Cancel Save. He further urges the citizens of the country to stand up against corruption. These are the same people who look down upon you with disdain and indifference once their purpose is served.
These are ridiculous schemes far removed from what is needed by the people. Citizens opinion should be taken to formulate policies and law:
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