Page 6 of 12
So, the debate continues. On the fiftieth year of India's independence, the issue seems to be centred around the question of who did the people in more: politicians or tycoons. I stand here in the ruins of the Tughlakabad fort in south Delhi, built in the 14th century, by the family of one of the most colourful rulers of this part of the country, Mohammad Bin Tughlaq.
One fine day he decided that he would like to shift his capital from this place called Tughlaqabad in Delhi, to a place 700 miles south. Some modern planners could argue that it was a fairly sensible decision. Tughlak, of course, had grander plans. He did not stop at moving his court. He ordered the entire population of the city, men, women and children, to move with him. If that was a medieval example of a ruler at his impervious best. But are the present set of Indian masters any better? Or is there an imbalance between the different organs of the country's polity, the legislature, the bureaucracy and the judiciary?
The Speaker of the lower house of the Indian Parliament, the Lok Sabha, Purno A. Sangma was not so sure when asked if the judiciary had gone overboard. When I asked him for his opinion on judges issuing a rash of decrees against errant politicians and the executive, he admitted the failure of this organ of the country's polity.
P.A. Sangma: "It was because of the failure of the other organs. Perhaps the executive has become less responsive; they have become less accountable. And that is the reason why such things have happened."