Sunday, 27 April 2008

Sophisticated illicit gratifications

Highly welcome a pronouncement it was when Loksabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee gave a reaction to the effect that Sansad Nidhi (discretionery funds placed at the disposal of Members of Parliament) for promoting (or say otherwis) developmental activities in their constituencies require to be done away with. Certain exceptions apart, these funds are hardly used in positive directions, if practically used, as there are M Ps who are honest enough either not to use them at all or use them so much in a limited manner that any benefit going to public remains out of question. Those who use whose number is ofcourse big enough do so with an extraneous motive where their own interests are involved more than any interest to the people in general. Projects for the purpose are drawn based on their negotiations with the builders, the contractors, the gobetweens. If a park is renovated out of funds sponsored from MPs quota, big big stone boards in and around it are sure to comeup highlighting the great gesture of theirs in being kind enough to spare the funds as if they were their own and not out of public money. This is besides a large entry gate again in bold writings to propagate the high gesture of the MP concerned. All this looks like election campaign operating in the background. Why these funds can't be directed straight to the welfare of the people and why the job is channelised through them are the questions that hover into the minds of the public.

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