POLITICKING PANCHAYAT ELECTIONS

It is quite unfortunate to witness the politicking resorted to by the representatives of the people in the valley at this juncture when the state is girdling up for the upcoming Panchayat and Local Bodies elections in the state. Instead of supporting the process of passing the real power to the people at grass roots level, even the mainstream political parties like National Conference, the Peoples Democratic Party, besides others have announced their decision to boycott the elections. These parties have demanded an assurance from the Central government on safeguarding Article 35-A of the constitution. It is really an irony that despite most of the people’s representatives being lawyers are seeking assurance from the Central government on a matter which is sub-judice in the Apex Court of the nation. In such a situation one can without any doubt say that these mainstream political party leaders have yet again started the worst type of politicking thus befooling their constituencies just to cover up their past follies that have shrunk their space in the present scenario. With piquant situation in the Valley it is highly crucial time for those in the institution of governance, presently the Governor and his team and the existing legislators of all political parties in the state to establish strong roots and productive working relationship with the civil society with utmost transparency and sincerity leaving no scope for politicking. The people of this state have voted to send their representatives in the legislature with great hopes expecting that they would work relentlessly for their welfare but they feel dismayed on finding these very representatives politicking to score points against their rival parties least bothering about finding just resolutions to their problems. It is time for the politicians of the state irrespective of their party affiliations to realize that they continue to enjoy the status and dignity in the society due to the democratic set up of the nation and the state as well and in this regard these institutions are the foundation of a democracy. The basic strength of a democracy is the strength and vibrance of its institutions which not only include institutions of state but those within political parties as well as at every level of the society especially at the grass roots level. Though India is today acknowledged by the world as the largest as well as the most vibrant democracy across the globe yet we here feel that democracy is still struggling amidst challenges posed by both internal as well as external forces with circumstances being created by the vested interests to legitimize violence directly or indirectly and use it as the language of mediation in political discourse or correcting aberrations of governance which goes very much against the democratic system and in this regard J&K is no exception. The basic principle underlying the vibrant democracy is the sincerity of the civil society in its efforts for promoting and strengthening of democracy. While the common man has been quite proactive in promoting participation, advocating for transparency and accountability and defending human rights besides ever willing to work together with government. However in view of the new challenges to our democracy emerging with the changing regional, national and international equations, there is apprehension of its fragility to novel challenges compounded by emerging manifestations that threaten the stability of the state of J&K. Keeping in view the present crisis, there is a dire need for perfect synchronization among those in governance as well as the legislators to address the serious issues confronting the common man by reaching out to them at the grass roots level in their respective constituencies. Last but not the least they need to convince their constituencies about the benefit of Panchayat and Local Bodies elections that can go a long way in paving the way for establishing peace in the tormented valley. In case of their failure to do so there is every chance of valley youth getting further strayed away from nationalism towards antisocial activities…?