All of you know that I can always be relied upon to point to a dark cloud for every silver lining that you see. Well, there’s no more need to despair. The cynic has decided to hang up his boots. I have decided to join the ranks of the jubilant and the optimistic, as we look forward to another five years of magic.
And while seeking to validate (to myself, primarily – you know how old cynicisms die hard) this sunny outlook, I came across some observations that make me feel we are on the right path.
For starters, India is clearly bucking the global recession. We are getting richer and wealthier. Evidence lies in the fact that the combined declared net worth of our 543 MPs in the 15th Lok Sabha is Rs. 3075 crores. Or 5.66 crores per MP. Not bad. And before anyone tries to puncture my balloon by pointing out that this total could be influenced by a few extreme values (a most regrettable tendency of this measure of Central Tendency!), do consider the fact that of the 543, there are 300 that have assets of at least 1 crore. The comparable number for the 14th Lok Sabha was 154. An almost 100% rate of growth. Not bad for an allegedly poor country. I’m already feeling better about myself. Ready to take on the world and all that.
The number of criminals has also shown a fairly robust increase. There has been a healthy increase of 17.2% in the number of MPs facing criminal charges (from 128 to 150), and an even more spectacular increase of 32.7% in the number of MPs facing serious criminal charges (from 55 to 73). Numbers that have beaten Street Expectations! No wonder the Sensex was up 2110 points. Good news again – we are moving towards a more inclusive society, with none of those old, regressive prejudices against criminals.
Finally, while no figures have been quoted to buttress this claim, it seems that the number of MPs belonging to political khandans has also hit a new high. Which we intuitively know to be true, and which is also reassuring because it tells us that that basic unit of Indian society, the family, the parivaar, the kutumb, is thriving.
My only wish is that we see this trend to its logical conclusion. Why don’t we have a government that actually combines all these stellar qualities? A family-based model of governance that is also wealthy, progressive and inclusive. One that has all the right boxes ticked when it comes to caste, region, religion, gender, criminal sensibilities and the lot. But that ain’t the best part baby – just wait: we already have all the right people for this. What do you think of a government that comprises Daddy, Amma, Behenji, Didi, and Bhaijaan? And, to ensure we don’t lose sight of our great heritage in this mad rush to be a superpower, we need a spiritual advisor. Every good Indian family has one. Enter Guruji.
So what do you think, people? Wishful thinking, or can this be India’s reality someday?