Friday 21 September 2012

Bharat bandh & aam aadmi

The opposition-sponsored bandh may have been successful, but where was the aam aadmi in it? He was inconvenienced and many lost a day’s earning. The countrywide bandh against the centre’s decision to hike diesel prices and allow foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail got a partial response, but that too only in some parts of the country. In their excitement to make a statement against ‘liberal economic policies’ of the UPA government, the opposition parties led by BJP and others forgot or did not care about the court’s ruling against strikes and bandhs.

According to the Confederation of Indian industries, this bandh’s economic loss is almost Rs 12,500 crore in terms of production and trade activities. The political parties may shout that such general strikes and bandhs are our democratic right and is supposed to be voluntary. The truth is the public is forced to sit at home and the main actors of such activities are not aam aadmi but those anti-social elements for whom, strikes are a lucrative business. What about the loss and damage to public property. Who will bear this loss?

And what did the bandh achieve? A daily wage earner lost his day’s livelihood and was left starving for the day; people could not travel to their destinations. The sick could not get treatment in hospitals. The political parties should do a re-think on these out-dated methods; it worked during post-independence years. Now things have changed, political parties too should make note of the sentiments of the aam aadmi and assure that he is not inconvenienced in any way.

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