Friday, October 23, 2015

An appeal

In Article 25 of the series “Let us think and Act with an Open Mind to Develop a Vibrant Democracy”, I had pointed out that the present Government is unable to control criminal intolerance and the resulting chaos and anarchy that are creeping in due to allowing some extremists to take law into their hands and even glorify commitment of violence and murders. Efforts have to be made by all right thinking persons to stop this rot.

I appeal to you to individually or collectively send the following petition immediately to the Chief Election Commissioner to prevent violent acts and murders which are leading to chaos and creeping in of anarchy.


Draft petition in italics

Chief Election Commissioner
Parliament Street
New Delhi - 110001


I/we* have painfully observed that some political parties have allowed their members to indulge in spreading hate which not only motivated some persons to carry out violent acts and even murders but also supported and even glorified these acts. These have resulted in creating chaos and allowing anarchy to creep in, besides hindering truly democratic election. As the highest constitutional authority for ensuring a peaceful and true democracy, I/we* appeal to you to immediately warn political parties that they will be disqualified if they allow any of their members to speak or act in a manner which is likely to build up hate among people or lead to violence or murders which in turn lead to chaos and anarchy which are detrimental to a peaceful and true democracy.
A citizen who cares/Citizens who care*

* Delete whichever is not applicable

Monday, October 19, 2015

Let us Think and Act with an Open Mind to
Develop a Vibrant Democracy – Article 25
Stem the rot quickly to prevent chaos and anarchy

Introduction: This series of articles (which can be accessed in blog OR had emphasized that neglect of problems other than economic growth has led not only to worsening of peoples’ problems but also to many shameful situations for the country (Article 15). More recently, hundreds of farmers have committed suicide and lack of adequate remedial measures by government have created humanitarian problems. What are worse, violent attacks and even murders due to intolerance of dissent and denouncement of core values of Indian civilization are leading to chaos and anarchy in the country as detailed below.

Writer Nayantara Sehgal returned her Sahitya   Akademi award in protest. In a statement titled “The Unmaking of India” she stated: “In memory of the Indians who have been murdered, in support of all Indians who uphold the right to dissent, and of all the dissenters who live in fear and uncertainty, I am returning my Sahitya Akademi Award.”  (The Times of India dated 7th October 2015.

“Citing the killing of writers and rationalists like M.M. Kalburgi and Govind Pansare, she said India is going backwards under the Modi government which is rejecting our great idea of cultural diversity and debate.” She was also upset by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “silence over this reign of terror” (Deccan Chronicle dated 7th October 2015).

Writers Shashi Deshpande, Ashok Vajpeyi, Sara Joseph and Rahman Abbas joined the protest. Protests are increasing day by day. Sara Joseph stated: “An alarming situation is being created in the country in all spheres of life after the Modi government came to power.” (Deccan Chronicle dated 11th October 2015)

Anand Patwardhan was disappointed that about 31% of Indians “brought to power an extremely narrow-minded ideology that contradicted the ethos of those who had fought for India’s freedom.” “The rapid rise of an armed lunatic fringe in our society is a real danger. All extreme right-wing groups have risen with the present government.” ”There are many ways in which the government tries to crush dissent – censorship, attacking and killing activists and saffronising appointments to key institutions.” Fr. Prakash said: The government has also “entered the private domain of what people should eat and wear, what films they should see and whether or not an Indian girl can even be out late at night.” (The Week dated 4th October 2015, page 47. More details are given in pages 42-49)

Intolerance in some peaceful fields which many people enjoy is becoming shamefully common. For example, ghazal maestro Ghulam Ali was not allowed to perform in Mumbai. Sudheendra Kulkarni was smeared with black paint for organizing a book launch. Dr. Suma Sudhindra said: “it is time people opened their eyes. Music, books, art – these are the things that bring people together. We should be encouraging these activities, not hindering these.” (Deccan Chronicle dated 13th October 2015)
Film director Govind Nihalani said:”These are worrying times. There is a tremendous unease in general over the recent incidents. One feels that very dark clouds are gathering over the cultural horizon of this country. We can see communal divide and polarisation becoming more and more acute.” (The Times of India dated 11th October 2015)

The President of India cautioned: “the core values of India’s civilisation that celebrate diversity, plurality and tolerance should not be allowed to wither away.” (The Times of India dated 8th October 2015.

Even after this clear exhortation by the President that withering away of the core values of our civilisation should not be allowed, the Prime Minister asked: what is the role of the centre in the Dadri incident? (He refers to murder as an incident!!) May be, he does not also know what is its role in the criminal attacks on authors because of intolerance of dissent. It is a matter for serious concern if the Prime Minister (the top most leader of the country) does not know that he should condemn outright all violent acts of intolerance by people taking law into their hands and take immediate action to punish these criminals and hate mongers so that respect for law is re-established and the core values of India’s civilisation are not allowed to wither away. If he knows and deliberately avoids taking suitable action, that too arrogantly ignoring the exhortation by the President mentioned above, the situation is worse and alarming and gives credence to the caution some months back by L.K.Advani, an erstwhile top visionary leader who had built up BJP, that an emergency like situation seems to be coming up.

Evidently, the present Government is unable to control criminal intolerance and anarchy that are creeping in due to allowing some extremists to take law into their hands and even glorify commitment of murders.

Swaminathan Ankalesaria Aiyer has exposed some crucial aspects of the atrocious Dadri murder on mere suspicion: “The clincher is the refusal of BJP leaders to condemn the lynching by a Hindu mob of a Muslim in Dadri for supposedly eating beef – which is entirely legal. BJP apologists have performed verbal acrobatics to somehow avoid condemning this murder.” (The Times of India dated 11th October 2015)

He further cautioned: “The Dadri murder is not just a moral but economic issue. Fear of RSS goons has forced many shop keepers to keep selling even buffalo meat. Transporters of cattle are fearful of arrest and worse. India has a large leather and footwear industry employing millions of workers (including many dalits). All these face shortages of hides and rising prices that make them uncompetitive in exports. Farmers have always sold aged cows, oxen and buffaloes in abattoirs. Indeed, this has enabled India to become the biggest beef exporter in the world.  Suddenly this large industry, a major employer, has become very risky and may become extinct in some states. The price of aged cattle has crashed or gone to zero, diminishing the wealth of millions of cattle owners.” Firstly, this shows indifference to welfare of millions of rural people who form the vast majority. This indifference is confirmed by lack of effective measures to prevent farmer suicides and non allocation of funds to create smart villages while spending huge amounts to develop 100 smart cities. Secondly, this is an instance of a huge “make in India” industry employing millions of workers and a major exporter being forced to wither away and questions the sincerity of Modi’s “make in India” exhortation. These are other serious consequences of not taking proper action after the Dadri murder.

The editorial of India Today (October 19, 2015) supports these views: ”The narrow politics propelling the cow  agenda and ethnic vigilantism puts road blocks on Prime Minister Modi’s  drive on development. The mandate given to this government in the General Election was for economic development and not for Hindu revivalism. The government will do well to remember that. Also, it should know that once you uncork the gene of religious tensions in a multicultural society like India, it is difficult to put it back. It will only hurtle India towards an Age of Chaos.” Being confident that Modi will remain silent, Hindutva groups like RSS, VHP, Shiv Sena and Rama Sene have thoughtlessly uncorked the gene and contributed to creeping in of anarchy. If all of them do not use their ingenuity to re-cork the gene matters will go beyond their control.

It may be re-emphasised that all these unchecked incidents of intolerance and disrespect for law are leading to chaos and anarchy. This gives added justification and urgency to expedite the comprehensive democracy suggested in Article 24. Since it will take some time to materialize even after taking it up with vision and commitment, immediate action has to be taken to stem the rot before it results in chaos, anarchy and violent revolution.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

 Let us Think and Act with an Open Mind to
Develop a Vibrant Democracy Article 24

Outline of a doctrine for comprehensive democracy


Facts, observations, analyses and suggestions highlighted by elaborate studies and discussions given in preceding articles* form the basis for this outline.

These clearly showed a dismal picture of democracy in India. A major reason for this is that politicians, by their callousness and repeated, uncontrolled and selfish activities, became enemies of democracy (Article 19). To complete the shock, the Parliament they formed did nothing to overcome many shameful situations faced by the country (Article 15). It also brought disgrace on itself because of lack of guts to punish government for breaking promises thousands of times and lack of dignity by spinelessly tolerating such disrespect by government so often (Article 6). This suicidal mockery of democracy justifies abolition of Parliament.

{*Most of these are not reproduced in this Article to avoid cumbersome and distracting repetitions. All articles of this series are available for reference in the following blogs:
Article 21 provides a quick review of important aspects from earlier articles.}

Other strong justifications for abolition are:

(1)      Parliament is not truly representative of people because (a) large majority of MPs have support of only less than 35% of electorate despite influenced voting (Article 2) and (b) it had a distorted and unhealthy representation of people because majority of MPs are very rich (Article 15).
(2)      Constitution had put a bar on criminals becoming MPs / MLAs. Shockingly, 162 MPs and 1,268 MLAs, who had declared criminal records, might have violated this bar (Article 2). It is likely that present Parliament also has this defect. Such large scale suspected violation of Constitution casts serous doubt on legitimacy of Parliament. Government, legal experts and hon’ble judges did not fulfill their moral responsibility to clear the doubts and ensure legitimacy of Parliament. Suspected criminal MPs also did not take prior/quick action to prove their innocence.  People were so dumb and callous that they tolerated being governed by suspected criminals, justifying the remark that “A nation of sheep gets a government of wolves”.  Thus, doubt about legitimacy of Parliament has been allowed to continue for many years.

State Assemblies also should be abolished because these have similar defects (Refer to paragraphs numbered 15 & 16 for more justifications).

As a result of these abolitions elections are not required. So also political party system which even otherwise was a dead weight because advantages of not having political parties far outweigh advantages of having these (Article 20).

These abolitions will (a) save lakhs of crores of public money which can be used to remove poverty and (b) release large areas of prime lands and buildings for public use.

Present concept of democracy considers that democracy is needed only for governance and overlooks many important aspects which have influence on living happily with a good quality of life and dignity under peaceful environment. To correct this fundamental mistake a comprehensive democracy is essential.

The following broad definition of comprehensive democracy, which includes its aim, is suggested:

Comprehensive democracy is a system which ensures the aim of people living happily with good quality of life and dignity under peaceful environment.

This definition does not specifically mention about need for good governance, health, education, employment or enterprise, prosperity, justice etc. because these are essential to live happily with a good quality of life and dignity  under peaceful environment. While growth of economy of the country is desirable, it is not essential for fulfilling aim of comprehensive democracy. When people prosper the country automatically prospers.

Because no country has comprehensive democracy, we have to act without looking for guidance or models from other countries.

This outline for comprehensive democracy should be discussed and debated widely and modified to the extent necessary. Then a Constituent Assembly should be set up to discuss it further, add required details and adopt it as a part of the Constitution.

Comprehensive democracy

1. Present democracy, by definition, makes the fundamental mistake that it gives attention to governance only. Comprehensive democracy considers governance as a sub system and includes many other sub systems (aspects) which have influence on living happily with a good quality of life and dignity under peaceful environment (Article 22). For managing this comprehensive democracy, National Comprehensive Democracy Authority (NCDA) should be constituted. To ensure proper use of socio-economic, religious, cultural and other activities to serve the aim of comprehensive democracy, it is essential to establish some subsidiary authorities (Wings) under NCDA, in addition to the “Governance Wing” (GW).

2.  This Article outlines some Wings as illustrations. These should be developed further and more Wings needed should be authenticated by Expert Group created for this purpose by Constituent Assembly. It should consider the need for independent Wings for some more activities of present governance besides the Wings suggested hereafter. 

3. Allocation of responsibilities between Wings should be formulated by Expert Groups and approved by Constituent Assembly. This allocation should be reviewed at suitable intervals by NCDA to adapt to management needs and changes in socio-economic, religious and cultural environments.

4. Each Wing should be headed by Chief Professional Authority (CPA) on the subject dealt with by the Wing. CPAs, together with an equal number of eminent persons from different walks of life nominated by Constituent Assembly, shall constitute the Management Assembly (MA) which shall be the chief policy making and executive authority of NCDA. Vacancies in and additions to MA should be filled in from list of suitable persons prepared as stated in paragraph 12 or by open selection. This ensures continuity of MA with well qualified and experienced members unlike Parliament which gets assorted members every five years (Article 3).

5. While CPAs should be empowered to independently plan and implement activities relating to their Wings, Management Council (MC) should ensure coordination of activities of different Wings and national interest. MC should consist of five CPAs selected by MA in rotation once in three years. All decisions of MC should be on majority basis. MC shall collectively represent India in all matters, with assistance of concerned CPA. This will ensure collective leadership emphasized in Article 23 and avoid one individual dominating over others like a sly monarch and denying  much needed multidisciplinary approach.

6. To ensure efficient management, CPA of a Wing should be a professional with qualifications and experience in the subject dealt with by that Wing and training in management. CPA should be assisted by officers with similar qualifications, experience and training. For this, suitably qualified persons should be given special training by following procedures similar to that given for civil and military services at present. CPA and officers of all Wings should be given additional training so that they work with (1) uniform perceptions about (a) comprehensive democracy and (b) different aspects of management of comprehensive democracy and (2) a mind set to comply with principles of comprehensive democracy. To start with, CPA and second level officers of all Wings should be nominated by Constituent Assembly. Vacancies in and additions to any Wing should be filled in from list of suitable persons prepared as stated in paragraph 12 or by promotion.

7. In addition, each Wing will need services of common cadres to provide supporting services e.g., IAS (for administrative matters), IA&AS (for accounts and audits), ISS (for statistical work and to monitor and evaluate programmes) and IES (for Wings which plan activities related to economy). They should be given additional training so that they will work with (1) proper perceptions about (a) comprehensive democracy and (b) different aspects of management of comprehensive democracy and (2) a mind set to comply with principles of comprehensive democracy.

8. This additional training for all cadres will ensure that they will work as a unified group with (1) proper perceptions about (a) comprehensive democracy and (b) different aspects of management of comprehensive democracy and (2) a mind set to apply principles of comprehensive democracy (Article 7).

9. To give voice to people, half yearly meetings (Article 18) should be conducted regularly for well planned compact groups of villages and urban wards/resident welfare associations. “Democracy Wing” (DW) should organize these meetings and take follow up actions.  DW should have adequate staff to conduct one round of meetings within  six months for all these groups together. For this, a cadre with graduates in social welfare and training in mass communication and management is required. It is likely that expenses for maintaining this large number of “democracy” officers may be less than amount saved by abolition of (a) large number of MPs and MLAs with much higher emoluments and perquisites, (b) election system and (c) Parliament and assemblies.

10. In these meetings, people should be informed (through DW), either directly or through their local leaders or panchayats/resident welfare associations, about achievements of all Wings, problems faced by them and their future plans. People should give their assessment of extent to which each Wing (including DW) has succeeded in meeting their needs and aspirations. People can also make wise selection of efficient leaders, out of local leaders who attend these meetings. These interactions ensure that (a) all Wings are answerable to people at six-monthly intervals and (b) people become aware of problems faced by Wings and will not resort to agitations. Reports of these meetings should be sent to DW headquarters, which should regularly send these to all other Wings, MC and MA for information and corrective actions. This ensures that all are kept informed once in six months about what is being done and has still to be done to meet needs and aspirations of people as well as problems faced by Wings and their future plans. This is the way to ensure a truly vibrant comprehensive democracy.

11. Through this direct interaction, people can give frequent feed backs on extent to which each Wing has satisfied their needs and aspirations and appreciate problems faced by Wings. But most common people do not have capacity, inclination and time to suggest changes needed to ensure that their needs and aspirations are fully met and to adjust to changes occurring in the country and the world. Such ideas and visions can be provided only by a section of intelligentsia which is in touch with people and global changes.  “Visions Wing” (VW) should encourage flow of ideas and visions from intelligentsia to it (without inhibitions), analyze these and present useful ideas to each relevant Wing for necessary action and to MC and MA for information. This will also result in intelligentsia feeling much more involved in democracy than at present. It is important to ascertain ideas and visions about improving DW also which plays a crucial role for success of comprehensive democracy.

12. Based on analyses of flow of innovative ideas and visions from intelligentsia, VW shall continuously identify eminent contributors suitable for filling up vacancies in MA and CPA and second level officers of all Wings. VW shall send relevant lists to MA whenever necessary.

13. Activities of DW and VW will establish a very efficient and truly democratic system to ensure that people’s voices (both down-to-earth and visionary) are heard with regular frequency by all Wings, MC and MA. This system has five major benefits –
(1) provides half yearly block/ward level checks on functioning of all Wings, (2) makes people appreciate problems faced by Wings, (3) involves intelligentsia in democracy, (4) gives ideas to all Wings for planning and implementation with involvement of people (both down-to-earth and visionary) and (5) there is no need for superficial central and state planning bodies without current field experiences and large amount spent on these can be saved.

14. To provide a hierarchical chain for efficient management the country should be divided into five regions with fairly equal population – north, south, west, east, and central. Each region should be divided into number of zones, each zone into districts, each district into taluks and each taluk into blocks, all with fairly equal populations. While some Wings may need offices at all levels, others may need offices at required levels only. For example, DW should have offices at block and suitable higher levels but VW may need office at national level only.

15. Having central and state governments creates many problems.  For example, grouping of subjects for governance as “central”, “state” and “concurrent” leads to conflicts and provides an avenue for shirking responsibilities. Sharing of revenues creates disharmony. Inter state disputes are quite common. Dissatisfactions among central and state officers lead to contradictions and delays. Most important: (1) state assemblies are not effective in meeting needs and aspirations of people because politicians have become enemies of democracy (Article 19), (2) enormous amounts are wasted on this ineffective system and (3) lack of uniformity in policy making and managerial activities contradicts “one nation one line of command” principle and works against national integration. For example, if a motor vehicle registered in one state is driven in three other states on tour or work, life time tax can be demanded by these three states also!! This leads to harassment of citizens and raises the question “Is India one nation?”

16. Giving voice to people within blocks/wards (paragraphs 10, 11 and 13) is tantamount to a federation of blocks and wards giving effective voice directly to people within blocks/wards every six months and covering all aspects (sub systems). This is far superior to a federation of states which gives only indirect voice to people for electing their representatives once in five years and that too for governance sub system alone. This and the drawbacks mentioned in paragraph 15 emphasize that states should be abolished. An additional advantage is release of vast areas of prime lands and buildings for public use.

17. In stead of Parliament and Assemblies, MA should enact laws for the country. “Law Wing” (LW) with cadre of law professionals should draft uniform laws for whole country in consultation with concerned Wings and submit these to MA. LW should also review laws every year to modify laws and delete obsolete laws, based on reports from DW and VW which reflect peoples’ needs for law and problems with current laws. MA should take suitable action on these reviews.

18. Titular heads like President and Governors are remnants of fanciful monarchy and against principle of collective leadership (Article 23). These should be abolished. This will also save enormous amounts of public funds and free large areas of prime lands and buildings for public use.

19. Practice of preparing annual budgets, which leads to large time gaps between planning and implementation of activities, should be stopped. Each Wing should be empowered to submit its plans (including staff and fund requirements) to MA any time. MA should meet every month (if needed) to approve plans and allot funds strictly according to a priority list for new projects for utilizing available funds. Thus, all new plans can be approved and executed without delay.

20. To ensure that activities reflect what people want, any plan submitted to MA should certify that recommendations of DW and VW (which reflect peoples’ views) have been taken into account. If not, reasons for omission should be given. If MA rejects any certified plan, grounds for this should be communicated to people by DW during half yearly meetings. If majority of these block/ward level meetings are unhappy with the rejection, MA should reconsider the matter or explain the situation to people through DW. This prevents a “dictatorial” approach by MA.
21. The above procedures ensure that each Wing plans and executes plans which satisfy principles of democracy, without any interference or delays.
22. “Tax Wing (TW) should draft proposals for uniform taxes for whole country. Taxing should be simplified (e.g., by selecting suitable periods for subject groups in stead of a uniform one year period). Direct taxes damage happy life because it leads to harassment and stress for majority of people. This often motivates them to be dishonest and create black money. Direct taxes should be abolished to avoid these national shames. While people have no control over direct taxes which are levied by government, they can reduce indirect taxes and avoid dishonesty by choosing their spending options.

23. Each Wing should carry out concurrent monitoring of its activities using data maintained by it. “Monitoring and Evaluation Wing” (MEW) headed by an ISS officer should check these monitoring reports and give guidance whenever necessary. It should also evaluate functioning of all Wings once a year. For this, it should be staffed by ISS and IES officers. Evaluation should be based on necessary special studies in addition to available data.

24. Efficiency of each CPA should be assessed every year by MA after examining monitoring reports of the Wing, reports of MEW and peoples’ assessment and views about that Wing prepared by DW and VW. Efficiency of staff of each Wing should be assessed by CPA based on suitably modified confidential reports. Punishments should be given for gross or repeated inefficiencies - by MA for CPA and by CPA for its staff. The latter can appeal against this single authority decision to MC.

25. For many years we have been doing lip service to equality. Equality is utopian. We have to be realistic, accept that inequalities are natural and fix suitable limits for inequalities which can still provide incentives for striving for betterment. “Inequalities Wing” (IW) should set limits for inequalities in income, ownership of land and living space, profit, wealth, special expenditures like marriage etc. To illustrate, IW should fix emoluments (salary plus perquisites) for lowest level of work and set upper limit for emoluments for any work at ten times this minimum emoluments. (For example, if lowest emolument is Rs.10,000 per month, highest will be Rs. 100,000 per month which is more than sufficient to lead a simple decent life and save some money and comparatively high enough to provide incentives for striving for betterment. For families with multiple earners the gap in income will be more attractive.) This approach will help the poor because top level will opt in self interest for good emoluments for lowest level in stead of other way now. For some activities with short efficient life (e.g., sports and games, acting, heavy labour etc.) a higher minimum limit should be fixed so that they can save for their future.

26. Similarly, IW should fix lower and upper limits for ownership of land and living space. As per latest census, around 1.77 million homeless people live along roads, on railway platforms and under flyovers!! (Times of India dated 25-04-15). In contrast, some rich persons live in palatial mansions which occupy hundreds of acres of land or in huge multistoried buildings.

27. There are many more instances of colossal inequalities. For example “world’s richest 100 persons earned enough to end extreme poverty for the world’s poorest people four times over”. Their annual income in 2012 was 240 billion US dollors compared to 1.25 dollors per day ($460 per year) for extremely poor people (Deccan Chronicle dated 20-01-13). The situation is likely to be similar in India. A Vice chancellor spent Rs.1.14 lakhs for an imported name plate!! (Times of India dated 20-06-15 page 5). Some persons spend crores to buy a car.

28. Fixing limits for inequalities in income, ownership of land and living space, profit, wealth, special expenditure, etc. will set limits to greed and lavish spending to show off wealth. This will respect the caution by Mahatma Gandhi (Father of our Nation) that “Nature has enough to satisfy everyone's need but not enough to satisfy man's greed”.

29. After approval of limits by MA, IW should ensure that there are no violations.

30. Gender inequalities in providing opportunities and legal matters should be removed. Immediate attention should be given to some special problems (like rape and harassment) faced by females. Current focus is on enactment of laws. This alone will not suffice.  Preventive measures (e.g., holistic education suggested in paragraph 51) should get priority. Innovative ideas should be developed. “Gender Issues Wing” (GIW) should formulate more effective innovative measures based on in depth studies of basic issues and organize dialogues and debates to help their implementation. A suitable cadre should be created to manage GIW.

31. Any religion should serve as a guide to path of divinity, peace and harmony.  In stead of guiding to seek this path, attention has been diverted to visiting religious institutions and practicing rituals and festivals. Thus, development of divinity, peace and harmony, in accordance with religious principles, has been woefully sidelined. It is doubtful whether honest practitioners of true spirit of religion form a majority in any religious community. It seems more likely that they form a negligible minority.  Thus, ironically, religion has often led to disturbance of peace, loss of brotherhood, intolerance of other religions, conflicts and even war only because of not following principles of religion. In other words, presently we are having worst effects due to wrong practice of religion in stead of the best from true practice of religion. Even worse, religious leaders are not bothered about this antithesis. They ought to introspect about guiding their followers to (1) follow principles of religion to seek path of divinity, peace and harmony in stead of giving more importance to practice of rituals and festivals and (2) strictly avoid conflicts in name of religion.

32. Leaders of different religions should strive to promote peace, love, harmony and brotherhood in accordance with principles of their religions. They should also guide their followers to get rid of hatred, jealousy, revenge and rumour mongering. They, along with some followers should participate in programmes undertaken by other religions and even help to organize these with a spirit of brotherhood and mutual respect. To promote harmony and brotherhood, Hindu religious leaders should get rid of caste and other social discriminations (including untouchability) by magnanimously making well planned visits (along with some followers) to houses of lower castes in different areas around the country, partaking water and food with them and taking them inside forbidden temples.

33. It is often stated that religion is an individual’s choice. To make this a reality, all children should be taught about all religions. This should be done during pre-final year at school to avoid final year when they concentrate on examination. Thereafter, they can make an informed choice of religion which can be recorded when they become adults. In other words, any adult can have religion by birth and religion by informed independent choice.

34. “Religion Wing” (RW) with cadre having knowledge of all religions, should organize dialogues with religious leaders about their followers honestly following religious principles and avoiding conflicts in name of religion. It should organize public debates also. For these, it should carry out necessary studies to provide convincing facts. Emphasis should be on following principles of each religion to fulfill aim of democracy to ensure that people live happily with a good quality of life with dignity, including spiritual development, under a peaceful environment.

35. Exclusive priority for GDP growth resulted in many shameful situations covering almost all crucial sectors (Article 15). Inclusive prosperity is conspicuous by its absence. Hardly any attention has been given to ensure that people live happily with dignity and peace. Comprehensive democracy should give high priority to humanitarian approach to promote prosperity, dignity, health, education, peace, and happiness to people. Only when this happens the country will attain its aim and glory not by even fastest economic growth alone. “Human Development Wing” (HDW) should ensure such important development. Human Development Index should be used to watch progress in this development. HDW should be managed by cadre with suitable qualifications in humanity and experience in humanitarian activities.

36. Judicial system needs a thorough overhaul to provide speedy and affordable justice with transparency (Article 11). In 2009, India had the shameful distinction of having largest backlog of cases in the world. Yet government did not provide more judges and courts enjoyed long vacations!! Roughly, over 30 million cases are pending now. Common people find it extremely difficult to get justice even after many years.  This leads to prolonged suffering. To mitigate this, the following procedures should be adopted.

37. Civil cases should first seek arbitration by “Arbitration wing” (AW) with cadre having qualifications in law and training in counseling.  Cases not resolved by an arbitrator at taluk level should be referred to a group of two or three arbitrators at district level. This procedure will resolve many cases quickly and reduce load of unresolved cases, besides making justice affordable.

38. “Justice Wing” (JW) with cadre of qualified judicial officers and judges will take up only unresolved cases referred by AW with full details. At district level, a judicial officer (or two or three judicial officers if recommended by AW at district level) should study these cases after questioning both parties in a helpful manner to overcome their diffidence or ignorance of law and pass orders. Appeals should be examined by higher level judicial officer(s) at district level. Further appeal can be made to High Court set up at zonal level and then to Supreme Court, with judges. At all these levels, cases once taken up, should be examined on day to day basis  and disposed off by judicial officers/judges without court hearings. Basic justification for this court less procedure is that judicial officers / judges with qualifications and experience are fully capable of taking decisions without prodding or interference by lawyers. In other words, court system demeans judges because it questions their capability to independently study all aspects of cases and provide justice. Moreover, people have to spend enormous amounts to engage lawyers. Thus, the new procedure will not only speed up justice but also make justice affordable for people (unlike at present) by reducing cost immensely. With abolition of court system for civil cases, civil case lawyers can find alternate employment in the wide spread cadres for arbitrators, judicial officers and judges.

39. Present court system (with judges and lawyers) at district, zonal and national levels will be part of JW. It will be used only for criminal cases in which further investigations are involved.  Postponements should be minimized for quick disposal of cases.

40. To speed up justice adequate numbers of arbitrators, judicial officers and judges should be provided on priority basis by MA and vacations for courts should be abolished (Article 11). While government claims lack of resources for appointing more judges, there are innumerable instances of wastage and wrong priorities. Thus, meager allocations made are due to low priority and not lack of resources. If necessary, part of enormous savings from abolition of Parliament, Assemblies, Election Commission, President and Governors should be used to provide quick justice.

41. Lack of transparency and miscarriage of justice are serious problems (Articles 10 and 11). To avoid these, orders by judicial officers/judges should give clear and precise reasons for judgment. These should be regularly reviewed for a sample of cases of each judicial officer/judge by judges specially designated by CPA of JW, to check miscarriage of justice.

42. NHRC failed miserably to check human rights violations because Regulations did not permit it to review court judgments. This obsolete Regulation should be suitably amended. Then NHRC will have to review lakhs of complaints about denial of justice by judges (Article 10). Therefore, NHRC should be restructured to replace judges with eminent lawyers and human rights activists. NHRC should be renamed as “Human Rights Wing” (HRW).

43. Media failed to put adequate pressure on government to solve problems faced by people and the country and to provide a platform for interested persons to freely spread or absorb positive ideas about development (Article 16). It chose wrong priorities and became commercialized. “Media Wing” (MW) should regulate and expand media activities with proper sense of direction and without hindrance from power mongers and commercial interests. It should make people knowledgeable about all aspects of comprehensive democracy so that they can participate effectively in half yearly meetings. MW should be staffed by cadre with qualification in mass communication and journalism and given training in management. Corporate bodies should be debarred from owning or controlling media to gain power to influence any Wing and mislead people to serve their selfish interests.

44. Democracy should provide to all its citizens comprehensive health care, which includes curative, preventive and promotional health care, with sense of equity and justice. Current health care system failed to do so. It also differentiated between rich and poor even in concepts for providing services.  

45. Business oriented curative health institutions often provide services with an eye on huge profits. “Almost 44% of the 12,500 patients for whom surgery was recommended were advised against it by their second opinion consultants”, as shown by a study. Playing with peoples’ health to make money is very cruel. Malpractices such as ordering costly diagnostic tests when not needed, earning cuts and commissions, inflating patients’ bills and accepting freebies are quite common. Because awareness about these is scarce, their services are wrongly labeled as of high quality. High voltage health marketing and use of paid research findings led to their fancy services becoming more and more fashionable and catchy. This led to mushrooming of such institutions with fancy heath care without   questioning whether such costly fancy care is actually  needed for or relevant to bulk of health problems faced by people. These revelations have to be considered before planning services of good quality to people who cannot afford to pay high prices.

46. No serious attempts have been made to study how services under different systems of medicine could be made to supplement each other, for providing maximum benefit to maximum number of suffering people.

47. Innovative and committed approaches are needed to make health services more effective and popular so that it can provide comprehensive health care. MA should give high priority for this,

48. “Health Care Wing” (HCW), should focus on all these and come out of the rut. CPA and officers of HCW should have qualifications in medicine and public health and training in management. Those working in curative health institutions under HCW should have a different cadre with qualifications and experience in the relevant system of medicine. They can be promoted to top level in HCW after acquiring qualification in pubic health and training in management.

49. Better approaches are essential for ensuring health of people because even best treatment alone is not sufficient for good health. Promotional health care which will reduce need for curative care needs high priority. Innovative ideas and commitment are essential. “Health Promotion Wing” (HPW) staffed by cadre with experience in health promotion activities and training in management should focus on these. It should work in close collaboration with HCW.

50. Our education system has fundamental defects. It is mainly oriented towards getting employment for making money. Even for this, skill training is grossly inadequate. More importance is given to passing examinations than to developing analytical/logical thinking. Often, theory alone is taught first and its application later (if at all) in stead of sandwiching theory and application in suitable stages in an intelligent manner. Attempts to dovetail aptitude with selection of fields for education and skill development are scarce. Because of this, students have to waste time and efforts to acquire some types of knowledge which are not even indirectly relevant to their future needs. This often resulted in calamity of round things being squeezed into square plugs. For example, research and development (R&D) jobs are often taken up by persons without any aptitude for or interest in these but only to earn a salary. This results in slow or no contribution to R&D.

51. Most important, no thought has been given to have a holistic education plan to generate good children, good students, good workers, good married couples, good parents and good citizens - as well as to develop  character, health consciousness and true practice of religion.  Undoubtedly, such a plan with vision will lead to profound changes in peoples’ approach towards many problems and solve some stubborn problems (e.g., rape and harassment of women, conflicts due to religion and caste, alcoholism, innumerable road accidents and crime, smoking, drug addiction etc.).  These will result in a happy life of good quality and dignity under peaceful environment.   

52. To make holistic education a reality and to overcome all basic defects (paragraph 50) “Education Wing” (EW) with cadre of qualified professionals having proper vision and commitment and management training should develop a system of education which wraps up both the above aspects. MA should give high priority for setting up adequate numbers of schools etc. of good quality for efficiently implementing new system of education throughout the country as quickly as possible. It is a matter of concern that quality of some schools (mainly government) even under the present simpler system was so bad that they could not attract enough students and had to close down. For success of new system adequate number of schools etc. of better quality should be ensured.

53. Even well organized systems need checks and balances to ensure that unexpected failures are identified and corrected. Attempts to have Lokpal (ombudsman) for this purpose did not succeed so far. Lokpal cannot function efficiently without investigating agencies to ascertain facts. Therefore, “Lokpal Wing” (LPW) should have not only a cadre with suitable qualifications and management training but also Central Vigilance Commission and Central Bureau of Investigation fully under its control. It should have power to investigate all Wings, MC and MA.

54. India has much cultural diversity. I have not come across a definition or compact description of Indian culture. Probably, defining it is not possible because of diversities. Superstitions and obsolete practices form part of some cultures. Attempts to over come these are opposed in name of tradition, forgetting that many traditions had short lives since Stone Age. That was evolution which was and is absolutely necessary. It is important to reach a balance between traditions and progress to evolve a national consensus on suitable dynamic Indian cultures, which can adapt progressive changes. “Culture Wing” (CW) should study how (a) unscientific and emotional diversities in culture can be reduced and (b) changes in culture  can be attuned to progress. It should also organize necessary dialogues and debates for acceptance of necessary progressive changes. CW should be staffed by cadre with knowledge of different cultures and their superstitions and obsolete practices.

55. National integration is essential to develop best possible democracy for whole country (Article 12). “National Integration Wing” (NIW) with a cadre having experience in the field and training in management should plan and implement multiple innovative approaches for national integration, with determination and  commitment. For example, NIW should encourage, facilitate and provide financial incentives for (1) inter zone/region migration, (2) inter caste, inter religious and inter zone/region marriages, (3) “know your country” education trips for school children and college students and (4) common national script for all languages.

56. Entertainment and recreation not only make people relaxed and happy but also have profound influence on mind developmentgood and bad. For example, unintentionally, mind development is seriously twisted when providers thoughtlessly introduce ideas which tend to repeatedly glorify evil or show that villains get away with their evil acts time and again and enjoy making good people continuously suffer. Objections raised are scoffed at by claiming freedom of expression, forgetting that they also have the responsibility to prevent disastrous mind development. Another problem is that many talented people are bypassed because of vested interests which blow up persons of their choice only. This leads to frustrations and hinders proper development of these fields in a democratic manner. Entertainment and Recreation Wing (ERW) with cadre having experience in the field should organize dialogues and debates to solve these problems. For this, it should carry out elaborate studies to collect relevant facts to make meaningful dialogues. It should also encourage activities that promote good mind development.

57. Development of sports and games has been faulty. The fact that these have good influence on developing character and good quality of life has not received adequate attention. It is shameful that India with more than billion people has faired badly in international competitions in most sports/games. Even much smaller or poorer countries have performed better. Systematic attempts to develop attractive facilities to identify talents and give training are grossly inadequate. Most parents discourage children because even top performers often lead pitiable life after short period of active sports/games.  Premier institutions for sports/games are managed by non-professionals. “Sports Wing” (SW) with cadre having experience in the field should apply its mind to solve various problems in developing activities on sound lines.

58. Activities in arts, crafts, music, dancing and literature have influence on having good quality of life. For convenience of reference these may be grouped under “Arts”. “Arts Wing” (ARW) with cadre having knowledge and experience in these fields should develop and encourage these activities, after well planned studies followed by dialogues and debates.

59. At present, government has ministries of finance, home (administration), commerce, trade, industry, communications, external affairs, defence, different transport systems, etc. mostly controlled by IAS officers. These should be renamed as Wings. All these Wings should have professional heads with independent authority and assisted by professional cadres. Expert group(s), formed by Constituent Assembly, should modify structure, functions and staffing of these Wings and add new Wings in accordance with principles and needs of comprehensive democracy. This should be reviewed at suitable intervals by MA to adapt to changes in management needs and socio-economic, religious and cultural environment.

60. Panchayat Wing” (PW) should organize and maintain village level activities under comprehensive democracy. They should also guide people to make six monthly meetings at block level meaningful and effective. Panchayats may not be necessary at block, taluk and district levels because of six-monthly meetings which cover blocks.

61. All offices should avoid paper work which requires large quantity of stationery and lot of storage space. “Computer Wing” (CRW) with suitable professional cadre should organize paperless office system and keep a watch on it. CRW should train all officers and subordinate staff in computer usage and provide hardware and software support.

62. Following office procedure is suggested. In stead of opening paper file for any subject, concerned official should open and number a computer file, type notes and send it by email to next higher level after attaching relevant documents. Letters received by post should be faxed for attachment. Official at receiving level should either ask for more information from lower level or make notes and forward it by email to next higher level. This procedure should continue up to decision-making level, which will then have notings at all lower levels and attached documents for study. It should take decisions and inform concerned individual or office through email. This will reduce time gap between taking decision and communicating it. If it can be communicated only through post, copy of out going mail should not be kept in paper file. This procedure is not only quicker but also prevents leakage of information from lower levels because decisions are available only with decision maker and files are not passed up and down through messengers as at present. Security lapses similar to what happened in Petroleum ministry recently can be ruled out. This procedure will help delivery of quick service to people, besides saving on cost of stationery and storage space for paper files. After the matter is closed, decision maker’s file with all notings, attachments and orders should be maintained in pen drives or CDs and preserved safely for future reference.

63. More details have to be taken care of. These can and should be finalized after detailed discussions by expert groups (paragraph 59), keeping in mind needs and principles of comprehensive democracy.

64. Comprehensive democracy outlined above has many advantages including following outstanding advantages:

(a)   People can live happily with good quality of life with dignity under peaceful environment because all aspects (sub systems), which have influence on these, are taken into account (not governance alone).
(b)  Maximum efficiency is achieved because all activities are independently managed by suitable professionals without hindrance from non-professionals.
(c)   Needs and aspirations of people will be satisfied as fully as possible because once  in six months  people can have a check on working of all Wings.
(d)  This check also leads to more efficient and effective functioning of all Wings.
(e)   Once in six months people become aware of problems faced by each Wing and will not resort to agitations.
(f)    Intelligentsia gets opportunities to be more actively involved in democracy than at present.
(g)   MA ensures that plans reflect peoples’ views.
(h)  This system is more decentralized and effective because direct checks are exercised by people once in six months at block/ward level in stead of having a check on their representatives once in five years for indirect intervention at state level.
(i)    National integration and uniform laws for whole country will eliminate parochialism and lead to the feeling of being an Indian.
(j)    Inequalities will be drastically reduced.
(k)  Quality of education, health care and religious practices will be improved
(l)    Rape and harassment of women, other crimes, road accidents, alcoholism, smoking, drug addiction etc. will be drastically reduced by holistic education.
(m)Disharmony and conflicts due to religion and caste will be drastically reduced.
(n)  Delay in providing justice will be drastically reduced and justice will become more affordable.
(o)   Human rights violations will be rectified.
(p)  With abolition of direct taxes, people do not have to bow down in shame for dishonesty and creation of black money.
(q)   Saves enormous amounts of money and releases lot of prime land and buildings for public use.

65. Despite these outstanding advantages some people will oppose change. Two relevant questions to them are: (1) Are they prepared to live, eat, work, travel and enjoy life as their ancestors did? If not, opposition to change, after enjoying benefits of change, is   hypocrisy; (2) Are they prepared to forgo their inferiority complex and use their ingenuity to set an example for others to follow. They may find more food for thought in the discussions under “Accept change as a part of evolution” in Article 23.

66. It is pertinent that government has been sitting for more than eight years on poll reforms suggested by Election Commission. Therefore, it is na├»ve to depend on government to develop the   comprehensive democracy outlined above despite so many outstanding advantages.

67. This series of articles clearly show that all citizens, organized groups and statutory institutions, besides government, are responsible for development, maintenance and further growth of democracy. All of them have to wake up and act if they sincerely want a true, vibrant and comprehensive democracy.

68. Action needed: Without further waste of time, people with vision should take keen interest, study all aspects of developing comprehensive democracy and lead a peaceful movement to make it a reality.

69. As a prerequisite for kick starting this peaceful movement, these visionaries should act to create mass awareness by suitable dialogues, discussions and debates and arrive at a consensus. Then a new Constituent Assembly should be set up to discuss this consensus and finalize changes in Constitution.

70. These steps form the peaceful way to develop comprehensive democracy before violent protests against our sinking democracy (e.g., by Maoists) spread widely and rock the country.  If we do not make such joint efforts now to build a better India with comprehensive democracy, posterity will blame us for our callousness which led to anarchy and violence.

71. Swami Vivekananda had exhorted us: “Arise, awake and sleep not till you reach your goal”.

72. Let our joint efforts be guided by following thoughts also:
(1) Have vision: A blind person asked Swami Vivekananda: Can there be anything worse than losing eye sight?"   He replied: "Yes, losing your vision!"
(2). Have an ethics of care: “Having an ethics of care for  suffering millions will not clash with your legitimate self interests and will make you happy.”                         Anonymous

(3). Learn from history: “Never forget that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; it is the only way that ever does.”                                   -  Margaret Mead

(4). Prevent evil to triumph: “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”          - Edmund Burke

(5)- Conquer silence: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”     -     Martin Luther King Jr.
(6). Dream, think and Act: Dream, dream, dream. Dreams transform into thoughts, and thoughts into action -  A.P.J. Abdul Kalam                                                                                                                                                     
(7). Innovate: “I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?”                                                                                    Robert F. Kennedy                                                               
(8). Dedicate: “Few things are created and perfected all at the same time. It takes effort, work, and dedication to achieve your goal.”
John Dillow
(9)- Be bold: “Boldness has genius, power and magic in it” Goethe

(10). Use will Power: If there is a will there is a way – A proverb

(11). Make efforts: “There can be efforts that fail but there should not be a failure of efforts”                            - Anonymous

(12) Use power of people: Mahatma Gandhi (who got us independence from the mightiest empire by leading a non-violent movement) has shown us how even unbelievable changes can be achieved when ordinary people come together and use their hidden power to do extraordinary things.



Your invaluable help is essential to make as many people as possible aware of outstanding advantages of comprehensive democracy outlined above, through personal group discussions, newspaper articles, e-mail and social media like face book and twitter so that we can have healthy debates culminating in  necessary modifications in Constitution, after approval by a Constituent Assembly. This is the way to replace our sinking democracy with the comprehensive democracy outlined above.

Please send comments about this outline of comprehensive democracy to I shall make use of all befitting suggestions to make improvements in this outline.