Pranab Mukherjee is the thirteenth president of the Republic of India after a bitter election. There is a feeling among one section, especially the ones who are looking to portray the Congress leadership as rudderless, that it is somehow not becoming that the presidential election should be contested. It is felt that it somehow reduces the office of the president.
The last time I checked India was a democracy and nothing has changed that. Elections are an integral part of a democracy. It is built into the very fabric of this social structure and is its biggest strength. I cannot understand how something so intrinsic to our political system can demean the highest office in the land.
I would argue that the bitter battle between Mr. Pranab Mukherjee and Mr. P. A. Sangma was a light that put India in the right light. We are a country that still elects its officers. So no matter how bad things gets or how gloomy, there is still hope.
Strangely, the Congress a very undemocratic organization was being dragged over the coals for a democratic act. Over the years we have seen the Congress elevate people to posts at the whim and fancy of a Nehru, and we have lived with that. But when the Congress upholds a democratic process, we cry Wolf!
By criticizing everything that the Congress does, we are not enabling it to change. We must criticize it when it is wrong and commend it when it is right. Then the party will learn the difference between right and wrong.
For too long has India’s largest and most viable political option been an undemocratic institution. It needs to change and that change has to be facilitated by the people.
Until the Congress party becomes democratic, India cannot become truly democratic.
Painful as that is, it is the truth.