Theek Nahi Hai!: Open letter to Manmohan Singh

Last Updated: Mon, Dec 24, 2012 10:03 hrs

Dear Manmohan Singh,

Prime Minister, India.


1. You either don’t speak on key issues or when you do speak you give totally insipid speeches full of banalities. For example we had earlier learnt that it requires: To be an economist, a degree from Oxford and Cambridge, governorship of the Reserve Bank of India and being a Finance Minister to learn the earth-shattering secret that money doesn’t grow on trees.

Throughout the latest speech you did not give a single concrete proposal to prevent rapes in India and set a single concrete deadline for change to take place vis a vis the plight of rape victims. Why? You expressed concern and sadness. Well, that is our job, the citizens of India, since we can do nothing else. You are the only one who can act and firm action is nowhere in sight.

At the end of the speech you asked, “Theek hai?” Well, the answer is, “Theek nahin hai!”

2. Your Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde is no better. He compared the protestors to Maoists. Is this what your government thinks of the common people of India? Are all these protests taking place over corruption and women's safety over the last couple of years a complete joke to you all?

3. You also said in your speech that “Violence serves no purpose”. Really? Then why did Delhi Police use the violent measures of water cannons, lathi-charge and tear gas shells on the peaceful protestors? It was only after that that the whole protests went out of hand and some lumpen elements may have joined in to discredit the whole agitation. Or was that the goal in the first place?

4. Why do all of you politicians keep saying “we have daughters”? That is a done matter, since if anyone on earth goes in for children, then the chances of having a daughter is 50-50.

In fact, that is exactly part of the problem. All politicians and their families have too much security. All newspaper reports and articles that have investigated it have found the same thing. More alarmingly, most politicians want policemen more for “prestige” than security.

So the security of the common man is suffering just due to the prestige of politicians?

5. The Delhi Police reports to the Home Minister. The Home Minister reports to you? What are you doing to change the image of New Delhi, which has been termed as the rape capital of India? Have areas unsafe for women in the capital been identified? Have the Delhi Police been sensitized on how to handle rape issues?

6. With so many protests going on, aren’t you tempted to call a special session of Parliament to present a white paper on the issue? There are problems with security, with attitudes of the police force, with the humiliation that the rape victim goes through in the whole process and the judicial delay. Are the common citizens the only people who understand these things while all ministers live in ivory towers and have no inkling of the crux of the issue?

And also, one would like to know what you think of the death penalty for rapists?

7. Chief Minister Sheila Dixit has criticised the Delhi Police and called for the process of setting up fast-track courts. That’s a Delhi issue. What about the national picture? Shouldn’t you be setting up fast-track courts all over India? Things like judicial delays all over the country can only be sorted out from your high office.

8. There are so many charge-sheeted MPs and MLAs in India and some of them even have rape charges against them. What are your views on that? Do you think anything can be done about that? Do you really think they will be part of a process that will give swift retribution to the rapists?

9. Authorities imposed Section 144 in the entire New Delhi district in the weekend of the protests. That itself was a harsh move. But even when Monday came, Metro stations continued to be shut and the area around India Gate was closed to traffic and even morning walkers. So if the protests continue, will you impose curfew in the capital indefinitely?

10. All over the world politicians are worried about public opinion. You and your government aren’t bothered even one bit. While many have compared the Delhi protests to the Tahrir Square, they are probably more like the Tiananmen Square, especially with the way the government responds.

You have found a way to muzzle public opinion online through Section 66A or offline through Section 144 and strong police action.

I must commend you and your government. Whether you have 400 odd seats like in 1984 or 200 odd seats in 2009, you manage to behave in exactly the same dictatorial manner.

God save India!

Yours sincerely,

A common citizen of India.