The turning point was August 15-16, when an unnerved government blundered, badly. The whole issue shifted from Lokpal Bill to whether citizens have the right to protest or not! The sea of humanity that has since converged on Delhi has pushed the government into a cul-de-sac from where there's now little room for it to escape.
What we are seeing now is no spur of the moment, intemperate outburst against a democratic system. It has been in the making for a long time. There has been enough and more warning, that people who man our administrative and government machinery have to mend their ways. The restrictions that the government imposed proved to be the last straw. Somewhere it all had to end. And, it looks like this is the beginning of the end.
What we saw on the streets of Delhi yesterday, and the unceasing overwhelming, almost reverential, support for Anna Hazare, is in fact, symbolic of the people's frustration with the system. People have lost confidence and hope in all constitutional institutions like elections, government, parliament, and even judiciary. This as much a reactive backlash as much as it's a proactive revolution.
DECLINE OF THE POLITICIAN
In a democracy, it's the politicians who hold the reins of power. And, that's why it's said that democracy is only as good as its politicians. Sadly, over time, during the past 64 years, our democracy has been eroded by its very guardians -- the politicians whom the people voted for, to run the country.
It's an open secret that many people enter politics because they know a lot of easy money can be made out there. Not surprisingly, the quality of political class deteriorated over time, and people, each time they were presented a set of leaders to vote for, had little choice. During each election, the frustration was very much evident -- the increasing demands for either an option to mark "none of the above" or the “right to recall” legislators. Indian democracy has been trampled over and converted into a free-for-all joke.
The entire political class has now been brought to its knees. For the first time ever, the government and Parliament -- the august body people elected -- is being told what to do by the people themselves. Team Anna wants the official Lokpal Bill withdrawn, and "people's" version -- Jan Lokpal bill -- introduced and passed.
Anna, backed by the surging humanity has presented Parliament with not many options -- pass the Jan Lokpal Bill within a time-frame. The government says this is tantamount to blackmail, undemocratic, and unconstitutional. But then, who cares -- people had since long lost its faith in government, parliament, and the politicians that it comprises.
What we may see over the coming days, could be historic, seeing the buoyancy Team Anna is getting. The politicians -- who till now have been either hiding or scoring political brownie points -- will now have to come clean. For the first time, politicians have been held accountable. They will no longer be able to hoodwink people. They will have to answer quite a few tough questions. This agitation has left them with no options.