Lokpal Bill: Reformists Enter into Deal with Government to Head Off the Struggle

Rajesh Tyagi/ 9.4.2011

A deal is ultimately clinched between the reformists with Anna Hazare at their head and the government of the bourgeois. Bourgeois press hand in hand with reformists is presenting it as a big victory for people against the government. This settlement, however, leaves crucial issues for serious consideration of youth and workers who are genuinely interested in elimination of the corrupt misrule of cronies and elite bosses in India.

The issue of agitation was the dispute as to the draft of the Lokpal Bill to be presented to Parliament, which seeks the appointment of an ombudsman to deal with the complaints of corruption against public servants- legislators, judges and bureaucrats. The core issue was the prior sanction of appointing authorities for a prosecution under the Act, which reformists were opposed to. Secondly, agitators demanded that the Lokpal be vested with powers to take cognizance without any reference to it from authority.

Agitators under Anna Hazare comprised by a core team of Swami Agnivesh, a former Minister under Janata Party Government, Kiran Bedi, retired IPS and Arvind Kejriwal, a rights activist.

The deal is ultimately struck between the government and the agitators, to form a Joint Draft Committee comprising of 10 members with two co-chairpersons, Pranab Mukherjee, union minister for finance from the side of government, and Shanti Bhushan, former Law Minister in Janata Party Government under Morarji Desai, in 1977, from the side of the agitators. Son of Shanti Bhushan, Prashant Bhushan is also inducted as member in the draft Committee. Former Supreme Court Judge Santosh Hegde who is at present Ombudsman under Karnataka Lokayukta Act, is another nominee of the agitators. Other members will be P.Chidambaram, Minister of Interior, Verappa Moily, Minister of Law, Kapil Sibal, Minister for Human Resources, and Salman Khurshid, Union Minister. After the draft is finalised, it will go to cabinet committee for its approval and then the bill would be placed before the houses of parliament for debate.

It is inconceivable how the proposed law would introduce a change in existing situation?

Needless to say, that the misrule of bourgeois continues side by side with presence of stringent laws and provisions on board for curbing corrupt means and practices. Apart from the penal provisions in the Indian Penal Code, states do have their Lokayukta Acts, like one in the Karnataka State, promulgated way back in 1984, but only to register a crushing failure in their avowed objectives. Prevention of Corruption Act, remains a dead letter so far as the all powerful ministers and top bureaucrats are concerned. All laws, remain handmaids of elite rulers, like a cobweb of spider, where powerful break through it with all ease and only weak get trapped.

The agitation has propped up in the backdrop of mega exposures of swindling of public exchequer at the hands of Union Ministers and top bureaucrats, which compromised the legitimacy of the bourgeois regime to the detriment of the elite rulers in the estimation of the workers and toilers. The 2G scam and Commonwealth games scam are recent exposures involving trillions.

Finding the whole system in acute crisis by a whole chain of exposures, the reformists headed by Anna Hazare, Agnivesh, Kiran Bedi and Arvind Kejriwal and backed by the petty bourgeois mass, have moved to restore its credibility through an affirmative ‘protest’ like action, which they so soon ended in compromise with the government.

In fact, neither the reformists nor the government had imagined even in their wild dreams that the agitation would gather so much support from across the country. Underlying anger of people at large is not merely against corruption, but against the whole misrule of capitalist elite. This anger has frightened not only the government but the leaders of the movement also. In order to avert a Tunisia sort of situation, the reformists and government both have hastened a compromise. The reformists instead of pushing the agenda forward to new and higher demands, entered into a settlement with the same government which till yesterday they were accusing of corruption, leaving the expecting people with a usual but meaningless promise that their crusade would continue.

Corruption is inalienable part of capitalist rule. Corruption is in fact a device to reconcile the otherwise irreconcilable conflict between the formal equality proclaimed under the bourgeois law with such fanfare and the informal gross inequality in bourgeois society. Money, through a regime of bribes to law enforcers, torpedoes the formal equality before the law, and reconciles the conflict through under-table transactions. It is this way the money establishes its power defeating all talks of legality and equality. This regime of bribery, a lifeline for the rule of capital, is known as corruption in popular parlance. More mature manifestation of corruption, which is executed away from public eye, is expressed in direct collusion between the government as a whole and the stock-exchange representing the whole capitalist class. Mega bail-out packages delivered to corporate sector in the period of economic crisis, to be later recovered from working people through immense hikes in prices of commodities and taxes, are live examples of it.

Rotten to the core, the misrule and corrupt regime of the bourgeois affects all sections of the Society and fans their anger against it. But the different classes answer it in totally different ways.

So far as this corruption perfects the dominance of ‘haves’ over the have not’s all sections of the bourgeois, including the petty-bourgeois, support it through acquiescence. It is only when this corrupt regime suffocates the petty bourgeois (middle classes) that they oppose it on limited program.

Petty bourgeois is interested in maintaining the rule of bourgeois, which it has put in place through its vote and support. It is not interested anyway in overthrow of bourgeois rule, rather is opposed to nay revolutionary program directed at its overthrow. It, therefore, advances a program of reform. It places demand upon the bourgeois rulers to take effective measures against corruption and set right the misrule. It is interested in re-generation of the rule of bourgeois, degenerated to the core. It is not interested in change of regime, it is for cleansing of the old regime. Petty bourgeois not only itself supports the capitalist leaders to capture power, but through its parties of the left and the right, leads politically backward sections of workers and peasants behind it to support the capitalists.

Oblivious to the historic incapacity of the bourgeois ruling in backward countries, which got belated entry onto the stage of world capitalism, and is consequently so weak to control its own state machine to render good governance, petty bourgeois reposes all faith in it. Petty bourgeois creates an illusion to mislead itself that capitalist rule could be modified and reformed to the benefit of people. Through its apparent protest, petty bourgeois in fact comes to the aid of the bourgeois regime to save it from the wrath of workers and toilers and to prolong its life.

Working class looks at the issue from a revolutionary standpoint. For proletariat it is of least importance, if the bourgeois rules honestly or dishonestly, whether it resorts to corrupt or non-corrupt methods to rule. Proletariat is interested in seizing power from the hands of bourgeois for itself, and thus presents a program of political revolution against the bourgeois rule. Proletarian program is based on an understanding that corruption is integral part of bourgeois rule and a manifestation of its historic degeneration.

Down with the corruption in regime, protests the petty bourgeois. Down with the corrupt regime, answers the proletariat.

In fight against the misrule and corruption under the regime of capitalists and landlords, proletariat looks at it as the integral part of its political struggle to overthrow the regime as a whole, while the petty bourgeois strives to insulate the issue of fight against corruption from the struggle against the regime.

In the state of complete decadence, capitalist democracies cannot deliver anything but the rot of corruption. Rapid and continuous degeneration of capitalism ensures it beforehand that in coming times these democracies will become more and more corrupt and unbearable for the people. The Reformists, how much support and favour they may garner among the corporate media and the middle classes, do not have any real solution to offer against the ever intensifying corruption and misrule of the bourgeois.

It seems amazing how this decaying and unpopular rule of the bourgeois survives and is kept in place? Apart from the direct and open role petty bourgeois reformists have played in preserving it, the answer lies in the service, Stalinists have rendered to the bourgeois by holding back the working class, the only class historically capable to overturn its rule, from taking to offensive against it. Obviously the question of wiping out the bourgeois rule necessitates the all out struggle against Stalinists within the labor movement.

It is the program of the working class, the program of ‘permanent revolution’ which offers the only viable solution to this constant state of decay of society created under the capitalist rule. Those who are seriously interested in overturn of this decay must arm themselves with this revolutionary program and join the forces of international working class.

At ‘the new wave’ we are building the revolutionary party of the Indian working class around the program of permanent revolution, and as section of the International Committee. We call upon all honest youth and workers to shun their illusions in petty bourgeois reformism and join the forces of revolution with us.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Readers may post their comments here!