Lok Satta Junction

For better governance in India.

Kalam, airport security check-ups and humiliation

with one comment

Someone at ToI thinks security check-up of our ex-President Kalam is an insult to nation. And many people who read the article seem to agree with it, considering the high rating 4.6/5 (553 votes).

It is one thing to say the airline breached protocol (in which case it need not make such huge news for a minor infraction) and quite another to say security check-up is a humiliation. Most of us suffer from this VIP syndrome, where we have this notion that people of certain positions need to be treated differently than normal people. And in turn a false prestige is associated with this VIP status. This is seen in different manifestations in everyday life when people in powerful positions expect faster treatment in Govt. offices, people using their “influence and money” to get work done and people’s tolerance for corruption. And to become part of this ruling elite is one of the biggest aspirations of the people. Most people see the Govt services as a favor of the ruling party/Govt to the people – a result of the Colonial/feudalistic hangover when the people were subjects of the state/ruling elite, rather than the state being people’s representation.

This same mindset is also responsible for the horrible way most of us treat our domestic help, our condescension towards people who are in the so called “lesser” professions, our denigration of the people of the “lesser” castes, our sycophancy to people in power and the general single family political party culture of our nation.

Long history of casteism, colonialism and feudalism have definitely played a role, but we have been a free democratic country with equal rights to everyone for more than 60 years now.

  • It’s time people started having respect for all professions and recognizing the dignity of labour.
  • It’s time people get rid of false prestige.
  • It’s time people started having self-respect and pride in themselves and demand what is rightfully theirs.
  • It’s time people stopped worshiping powerful individuals or families.
  • It’s time people fight for themselves rather than for their masters.

Update1: A good article in The Hindu.

When Zia-ul Haq was President of Pakistan, he and his baggage were exempted from security-checks. His weakness for ripe mangoes was well-known. It has been reliably theorised that his adversaries managed to have a small packet of mangoes to be included in his cabin baggage, that one of the “mangoes” was in fact a small bomb and that it exploded when the aircraft was air-borne. All the crew-members and passengers in the flight, including the General, were killed in a trice.

Update2: Another day, another phony outrage. This time, it’s Bollywood Badshah Sharukh Khan.

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Written by jujung

July 25, 2009 at 12:24 PM

Posted in India

Tagged with , ,

One Response

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  1. […] propel his inexperienced son YS Jagan as the CM are disgusting. This is another expression of the feudalistic attitude of the people in the […]


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