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Mainstream, Vol XLV No 25

Don’t Say No To A Dream

Saturday 9 June 2007, by Som Benegal



There are two types of revolutions. One is full of blood and thunder and like a tornado bringing death and indiscriminate destruction. The French and Russian Revolutions were such. The other is quiet and peaceful like “tired eyelids falling upon tired eyes” or like dew falling upon morning grass. The Polish transition from communist rule to democracy under the leadership of Lech Walesa was one of the other kind. So was the benign Silk Revolution by which Czechoslovakia parted into the Czech and Slovak Republics. Our own revolution under Gandhiji’s leadership was, alas, deprived of its non-violent essence by the sporadic intrusion of violence ending in the ghastly aftermath of Partition. However, the wounds of this tragedy in India were healed to a large extent by our choice of democracy and a great visionary and flexible Constitution which still inspires our dreams of a state and society ensuring equality and justice for all our people without discrimination of any kind. That effort, despite many shortcomings and hurdles, continues to be our most cherished goal.

It is, in this context, that we must evaluate the outcome of the latest efflorescence of the elections in UP. Sensational, as it might seem to some, and incredible to others, this election must be seen as the culmination of a coming-together of the best elements in our political life bearing on our social organisation and order. Let us not hastily think that the battle has been won.

Many of our parties and leaders who have assumed they had an inviolate right to leadership of the States and the country have lost. We can only hope that Mayawati and her rainbow coalition of earnest and progressive people not given to reactionary ideas will be allowed to continue to provide a beacon to good governance of justice and probity for future elections and life in the times to come everywhere else. Let us hope that the defeated parties and other elements will not try to wreak revenge by trying to bring her down at all costs. For once we have a glorious chance of ushering a new order, and what is more, led by a courageous woman.

Tread softly, for you tread on flowering dreams.

(Courtesy : Neighbourhood Flash)

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