Equality of Law Enforcement

This does not come as a surprise, but I am still amazed at the very cautious approach of law enforcement agencies in India to take actions against the politicians, the rich and the famous, which they would have taken without batting an eyelid when it comes to similar crimes committed by ordinary citizens.

It only goes to prove that democracy is unequal – the form of government being a democracy is not a simple basis for anyone to be proud, without belittling the critical importance of democracy in nation development. I have my views on the necessity of firm leadership with eyes on the long-term future of the country, without succumbing to coalition party politics. However, I also realize that for that kind of leadership to emerge is to expect the impossible in today’s hyper-competitive politics – it would have been possible a few decades ago.

Why are government agencies afraid to move quickly and firmly against powerful culprits? Why is the Supreme Court’s intervention often required to push the law enforcement agencies to take action?

The reason lies behind the ability of political powers to impact bureaucratic/administrative appointments and damage the careers of honest and upright officials (who seem to be dwindling by the day). If the “Executive” arm of the government is run by vested political interests, then the citizens cannot expect a better governance. Political interests are driven by the intoxicating mix of power, greed and money, and always remind the Executive branch that the party currently in power needs their support to come back to power in the next elections.

While lobbying happens along with the exercise of money power in the U.S. and Western democracies as well, the blatant misuse of administrative machinery seems to be a specialty of Indian government. The abuse and misuse continues to this date, and I am sure that irrespective of the party or the coalition of parties which would come to power in mid-2014, the situation will more or less remain the same.

This vicious circle of power-politics-money-weak administration is going to continue, unless a very decisive leader comes into play with country’s benefits as the sole criteria for governance. One can only hope such a leader would arrive in the near future, and enforce the equality of law in the eyes of all citizens without it being misused and abused all the time in favour of the rich and the famous.

Let us see!


Vijay Srinivasan
12th May 2013


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