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On Leadership…

There is a much-heard story of an old man (read Philosopher), who, reportedly, used to roam in the streets with a lantern in his hand in broad daylight in ancient Greece… and when asked by people about such an act, he used to reply that he was looking for a human being! Diogenes, the old man, thus explained to the people that one could easily find a light, but it would be really difficult to find a person with proper human(e) qualities… Recently, an Indian national partially reminded us of Diogenes’ strategy in the Eastern City of Kolkata by carrying a placard on his back! On the placard, it was written: “You are right, I am wrong!

You are right, I am wrong

Apparently, the words seem meaningless and ridiculous, but in reality, these words form the message of a well-planned protest, as the message indicates that there is no scope for debate in our (political) society! The Government is no more interested in communicating with the people (except during the time of election), and it has – in a way – turned into a global norm! The Ministers and their Secretaries are making the final decisions, wasting public money in the process by going forward in implementing not-so-intelligent projects! It seems that the young Indian national has issued a strong statement against this disrespect through the placard! The protester rightly realised that the political leaders would not tolerate this minor criticism… It is hence, he has urged the media not to publish his name! He, reportedly, told the reporters that there were two types of persons: one type similar to the Gorilla and the other the Amoeba! He mentioned the single-celled animal in order to highlight the fact that common people have now become unimportant, with their ideas and views redundant, in a democratic country…

People have slowly been deprived of their freedom of speech and expression in many democratic countries in the contemporary world… The Civil Society, too, has turned into a sort of an amoeba and has managed to survive only by taking shelter in the body parts of protesters! It has become increasingly difficult for the common man to criticise the government, as the STATE can easily portray him as a ‘rebel’ or ‘anti-national’ in that case…
The Indian Police recently detained noted economist and academic Jean Dreze for allegedly holding a public meeting without seeking permission from the concerned authorities… The incident shocked the entire South Asian nation! Immediately after his detention, a social activist tweeted: “Shocking beyond Words! Jean Dreze is a saint-economist, a potential Nobel awardee who (has) lived in slums, written and done more for the poor than any economist, shunned all power and glory, took up Indian citizenship, is a Pacifist. Nothing can be more shameful than arresting him.

Now, who would bell the cat by taking the risk of forming a public opinion?
To express personal opinion in public forum has also become dangerous (even in a democratic country)! A number of people have recently been jailed in India for criticising the government on Facebook. Queries regarding the authenticity of data provided by the government possibly make the ministers angry, as if they do not have any liability or accountability after getting elected… In such a situation, the hapless common man has fewer options other than taking resort to sarcasm, tele-yelling at those politicians: “You are right, I am wrong!
It, in other words, means that the people are looking for a right leader who will listen to them and try to resolve their problems… also, the leader is expected to be respectful and protective about the freedom of speech and expression, thus, allowing the people to express their views through broadsheets, literature, movies, plays, and the like!

The Civil Society wants freedom from the Reign of Terror! An Amoeba does not possess the strength of a gorilla… However, it can turn a gorilla into an amoeba, again!

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