- The Indian political class is peculiar and distinctive when it comes to flouting their power while conveniently forgetting about being servants of the people is quite a common phenomenon. The democratic form of governance prevalent in the country bestows responsibilities on these elected representatives to serve the people. Not for nothing, democracy is defined as for the people, by the people, and of the people. However, the sense of entitlement our political leaders possess so abundantly while getting elected to public office manifests into such a huge spectacle of paraphernalia where teeming supporters, security personnel, and officials mark their arrival/exit.
- Not to forget the huge cavalcade of vehicles accompanying the VVIPs on the move completely inconveniencing the general public by stopping the movement. There were concerted efforts undertaken in the past to address this glaring anomaly which should not be seen at all in the present-day society but nothing concrete has emerged out of such futile endeavors. The leaders and officials’ unabashed liking for official vehicles with a red siren on the top needs no further elaboration either. The political leaders’ insistence on blaring sires to accompany their official convoy is a common sight on the roads across the country even as the general public is halted to make way for passing vehicles.
- There is any number of instances when people seeking immediate medical attention-getting struck in those VVIP convoys losing lives in the bargain. One such incident occurred recently when President Ram Nath Kovind’s convoy was allowed to pass as the car carrying Vandana Mishra to the hospital was stopped in Kanpur. Unfortunately, the lady passed away late Friday night last week which otherwise would have probably allowed her to live whilst getting timely medical attention. The President has sent condolences to Vandana Mishra’s family in keeping with the obligations of his high office. However, the Kanpur tragedy is by no means unique.
PC: THE QUINT
- On their part, the Police too are overzealous whilst imposing traffic restrictions because they only respond to a system where public inconvenience is extremely considered as low priority. Ask anybody about commuting on the roads of Indian cities which is anything but pleasant and unwelcome. Most of the cities suffer terrible traffic congestion. As per reports, in Mumbai, it is estimated that a trip takes about 53% more time than it should, in Bengaluru 51%, and in New Delhi 47%. On top of this, there are few green corridors for ambulances attending to emergencies. Road blockades so set up to smoothen VVIP movement only worsen the situation painfully and fatally sometimes.
- Try telling this to VVIPs, and they are loath to give up their traffic privileges with flags atop their vehicles. Unlike India, many European and Western Countries where the elected representatives are not accorded traffic privileges are seen commuting shoulder to shoulder with common citizens and in public transport to boot. This should be the way forward here too. Deploying smarter security arrangements for VVIP protection without inconveniencing the public should also be envisaged. Here, the onus is on the political class to set the right example by bringing in a law abolishing such anachronistic practices. Is someone listening?