“The battlefield is a scene of constant chaos. The winner will be the one who controls that chaos, both his own and the enemies,” said the legendary French statesman and military leader Napoleon Bonaparte. But for Goa, the battlefield of polity is turning out to be more than chaos, an exercise in desperate control and political opportunism. Something so bizarre and disgusting that one wonders where did such ignoble virtues creep into Goan society? And how did we land in such a democratic mess?
There is a standard human trait. We choose our Gods, our leaders. First, we eulogise them and go beyond limits to glorify them and then when they fail us we blame the circumstances rather than correct ourselves. Dear Goa, today if you are run by a remote control of greed and cronyism, you chose it. You asked for it. Today, if your Chief Minister is missing in action and his coalition partners are okay with it; it’s governance that you chose. From selling your votes for Rs 500 to Rs 5000 to choose a friend who gave your kith and kin a government job or lucrative recommendation, from allowing you to regularise your ‘little’ construction irregularities to bypassing the queue to grant you a loan or a plot – this was the government that you gave. Goa suffers.
Goa never chose this government. Whether you call it a party of the people (Janata) or a Forward party or a party of the Gomantak, some of the leaders were all that you chose but did we ever seek this government? A government that was borne out of a hijacked mandate. A government that virtually unleashed a tsunami of corruption by rewarding political free-floaters, fly-by-night buccaneers and opportunists with plum ministries. Ghetto leaders who had shamed Goem peddling our virgin lands and landscape and peddling our jobs and denying it for the average Goemkar, businessmen and petty contractors now run the government and yes, they are unanswerable to Goem.
Check this. Since February this year, Goa government is facing the absence of one minister after another. This includes the Chief Minister who holds the most crucial Finance and Law & Order Departments. The man who prefers to hold every government department close to his chest like a little girl clutching her precious Barbie leaves his Cabinet colleagues as scavengers of their own turf. A key political insider of the ruling party admits that many Goan suppliers and contractors to the government have bills piling up since months as ‘there is no money’. Interesting! All our ministers going overseas for expensive medical treatments have money enough. All our MLAs and ,inisters taking that welcome summer break have money enough. There is money enough to hold ruling coalition party events too. There is also money enough to pay a politician’s undeserving and failed son a Rs 25 lakh cheque when there was no money to sponsor the equipment of Goa’s Asiad challengers. This, Dear Goans, is the government that you gifted to yourself and you whine about, on your Facebook posts, WhatsApp messages, your private conversations.
If the State is running sans Chief Minister, sans Finance Minister, sans Home Minister, do we really need a Chief Minister? If the State’s PWD Minister has money enough to build bridges and sewage plants but goes missing when the poor bitumen contained road goes cracking with potholes, do we need a PWD Minister? When the Town & Country Planning Minister allows rampant rampaging of pristine lands and virgin landscapes, do we need that TCP Minister to plan our lands? If your Revenue Minister wants to rework land laws that protected the Alvaras and comunidades since ages in just one year of his term, do we need that Revenue Minister to manage Goa’s land wealth? The joke adds up every day and a new joker joins that pack called government. Are you even laughing at that bizarre joke of a polity?