04 Sep 2023  |   05:55am IST

Who will give us governance which responds to people’s needs, not politician’s greed?

Who will give us governance which responds to people’s needs, not  politician’s greed?

With the political narrative pointing at an attempt to have one nation one election bill, the focus must once again be on the voter and his and her responsibilities.

The questions have to be asked to the Goan voter because in the voter’s accountability and honesty lies the future of our democracy. In Goa, will the voters act honestly, not for their own selfish interests but for the future of their children? Will they vote for the future or for short-term personal gains of the present?

And while asking these questions, there must be one primary one where sops to voters before elections should be questioned too. You will see a fall in the prices of petrol, cooking gas etc. Who will ask if this is an election gimmick or a genuine concern?

The answers to many of these questions, voters should ask, will affirm the safety and security of our Constitution and the spirit of our democracy. Above all, they must question themselves, whether each of these questions is necessary for Goa, its way of life as well as upholding the principles of our democracy are important or not.

Will you vote for a politician’s greed and your need, or for the need for Goa and Goans?

Are you going to vote for those who will fulfil their need or your collective need for a Goa that once was? Simple, beautiful, honest, green, living a life of harmony and togetherness, with open homes and hearts and no talk of yours or mine. Goa had a feeling of we and ours and never me and mine.

The spirit of Goa in the sixties was reflected even in its touching personal no-frills advertisements like the one with this story. The copy of the ad states: “You will be delighted to see age-old heritage... the golden sandy beaches... peaceful country scenes. And that’s not all, come and EXPLORE YOURSELF

Let’s now ask a question: Who will give this Goa back to us in the many ways that we have experienced? For example:

Harmony is like our mother. Who will guard and protect it?

Who will make harmony among all castes and religions their nonnegotiable principle come what may? This is Goa’s biggest asset, its jewel, kits prize. The people of Goa have to decide who will guard this prize like you guard your mother.

Who will keep land grabbers and real estate sharks away and give us back our “age-old heritage… the golden sandy beaches… peaceful country scenes” all of which has been destroyed piece by piece, square metre by square metre?

And there’s more…

Who, among the parties and their politicians, will keep the LED light trawlers away from Goa’s waters to save our fish and fisherfolk? Fishing is not just a trade or profession. It’s a part of our ethos, our culture, our way of life. When there is a cruel, intervention and even our fish is robbed who will, among those who come to ask for votes, come and protect local fishermen? This is a question that one must ask.

Who will not change agricultural laws to allow farmhouses of outside land sharks to be built on Agri land? Our farmers are our producers. They have been feeding us for years. With no subsidies for seeds, hardly any support system coupled with so much agricultural land simply transferred to real estate, Goa’s humble farmer has been humiliated and pushed out of farming.

Who will formulate a coastal management plan which strictly forbids the harming of Goa’s coasts against reckless “development”?

Who will protect our forests, forest resources and our wildlife and rivers and not take away our environmental rights and river resources? Is this question necessary? Isn’t this connected to the lives of both humans and animals, and nature, which has lived in sync so beautifully for centuries?

Who will remove the shame that is attached to the police force for not being public servants, only politician’s servants; for being a puppet on a chain of their masters- these politicians? And who benefits from a weak police force? Simply those who are on the wrong side of the law, those who break rules, those who run drug gangs and those who settle political scores through the force. Who will ask questions like why policemen who were transferred from police stations continued in their old postings for over a year and no one asked questions?

Finally the most crucial question: Who will ask all politicians if the common people really interest them? Do they want the prosperity of the common man or only their own?

This question can only be asked if people want a leadership and system which keeps the common man first, not the greed of politicians first. If this is necessary, this is a question that should actually be asked first.

Each of these questions needs answers. And if they can’t be answered by one political system then it is the people who will have to decide on bringing in a people-centric system for the future of their children and their motherland.


Iddhar Udhar