January 23, 2010

Pawar deserves the Sack

Not a day passes when the most worthless Minister in the Central Government does not come out with statements designed to help profiteers while in the same breath asserting that he is not responsible for the inflation. This is, perhaps, the first time that the country is facing an unusual situation where apart from the failure of policy and programs of the Agriculture Ministry, utterly irresponsible and alarmist statements by its Agriculture Minister are equally resulting in feeding the fire of inflation as everyone from the aam admi to the Prime Minister, who also claims to be an aam admi, is watching helplessly.

Pawar - Can we project shortage of salt next?

India-awake which has already been following his dismal track record ever since he was appointed as Agriculture Minister, has been highlighting the same since May 2008. (see this article and the links there)

Brazenness, Bluff and Bluster

His oft repeated hackneyed and bogus excuses are no longer fooling anyone except, perhaps, some of his party members. He can hide neither under the drought, nor heavy rains nor floods because regardless of these natural factors which happen every so often, people are beginning to realize that the country has entered a cycle of scarcity which may continue even in normal periods. This is happening because of the havoc being wrecked by this one man.

On 22.1.2010, he made an assertion that in his 40-50 years of political life, for the first time he was seeing price rise being linked to Agriculture Ministry. He may be right, but he (more than his Ministry) is being blamed because he may well be the first Agriculture Minister responsible to a large extent for the state of affairs and the drought and heavy rains have come in handy only to be used as shields. He also said that the Agriculture Ministry was performing its functions (of collecting statistics?).

Incidentally, even if there is drought, there is no famine. It is worthwhile to refer to the following observation in a UNDP publication on drought and famine:

“..droughts are therefore a normal feature of climate and weather systems in all countries, including those generally regarded as being “wet” and “cold” as well as those areas usually associated with the term “drought” – the semiarid areas of the tropics. While droughts may be regarded as unusual in that they do not occur all the time, or in some areas for most of the time, droughts should not be regarded as being “abnormal” and, in fact, should be planned for in all countries.”

The people have been fooled enough by talks of drought and if the country can become so helpless all due to a drought, it is indeed scary to imagine the situation in case of a real famine, especially with the present Government and ministers like Pawar being in charge.

Pawar planning to import fodder too?

In the last week, he made a statement pointing to an impending increase in the price of milk which understandably drew protests from various States. It also inflamed the volatile Mayawati who promptly and rightly insisted that Sharad Pawar be removed. Mayawati used the term “irresponsible” for his statement. She should have instead used a stronger term.

Cabinet responsibility? – Yes, for not removing him

He has been cunningly trying to shirk the responsibility for the rise in food prices. In the last week, he cleverly persuaded the Cabinet for the Prime Minister to call a meeting of the Chief Ministers of the States to discuss the issue thus pitting one against the other. The underlying idea was to kill two birds with one stone. Such a meeting would imply that both the Prime Minister and the State Governments were the real parties responsible and not him. It would also leave the Prime Minister, rather than him, to face embarrassing protests of the Chief Ministers which were bound to surface. It appears that the Chief Ministers as well as possibly the Prime Minister saw through his game and the meeting has been deferred.

To buttress his position, he also had his sidekicks say that if anything was going wrong, the entire Cabinet was responsible not him, as the Cabinet had the collective responsibility. Sure, his supporters are right. The Cabinet as such cannot escape responsibility. But that responsibility lies on the Cabinet and particularly the Prime Minister for tolerating and continuing an incompetent Minister in a crucial Ministry who only compounds rather than solves the problems. Of course, the overall economic policies also have an influence. For example, he has been implying that the poor are eating more because of the UPA programs for the poor. If that be so, on the basis of collective responsibility, he is also responsible for any failures of the Government related to its economic policies.

Sackfuls of Sugar and Rotten Wheat and other Rotten Stuff

Pawar - a welldoing Minister

Sharad Pawar has been in positions of power for long enough. Even if the general perception about his having done too well for himself and being the wealthiest politician in the country is discounted, he deserves to get the sack with sackfuls of imported sugar and rotten wheat as bonus, purely on the basis of his performance as Agriculture Minister.

A vulture lying in wait for a famine

If the Prime Minister cannot get rid of this man even now, it can only mean that he personally along with the entire Government is truly responsible for this state of affairs.

It can be termed as a misfortune of the people to have such a Government running and ruining the show.


Even as the ink is turning dry....

Even as the ink of this article is turning dry, the multi-faced Pawar, who has been himself giving excuses for the price rise while claiming to be not conerned with it, seems to have finally realized that nemesis may catch up with him. As reported by a TV channel, he made a statement somewhere to the effect that the because of the inflation, the farmers were getting higher prices! He is further reported to have said to the effect that he would not mind sacrificing his chair in trying to get a fair deal for the farmers. A mercenary trying to pose as a true martyr, no less!

How can any sensible Head of Government take such nonsense?
If he can, it only means that he still has confidence in Pawar and shares his views.

सारे जहाँ से अच्छा, हिंदोस्ताँ हमारा