Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Kingdom of Evil



Sreesanth has a lot of fans in his home state of Kerala.  Some of his fans took out a procession to show their support as well as to solicit others’ sympathy.  A few of them seem to think that the cricketer is innocent.  The thinking of quite many of them,however, may deserve a serious scrutiny.

That thinking was reflected in a TV programme presented by the Malayalam channel, Asianet, yesterday.  The crux of the programme’s argument is: There is rampant corruption in India.  There are politicians as well as others who make crores of rupees through fraudulent means.  Why single out Sreesanth? 

There’s a similar issue being discussed in Kerala these days.  A Malayalam actor, Kalabhavan Mani, was involved in a drunken brawl with some forest guards.  Mani beat up some of the guards and is now absconding.  Yesterday the ADGP of Kerala’s Intelligence Bureau, T P Senkumar, came out with an interesting argument.  He asked whether the police would have dealt in the same way with actors like Mammootty or Mohan Lal.  What he implied was that the police chose to be stern with Mani because the latter belonged to a low caste and hailed from an economically poor background.  Senkumar said that the Kerala police was following the colonial habit of seeing dark skinned people as inferior!  [Fair & Lovely and Fair & Handsome can hope to sell more in the state and save people from discrimination.]

Both the instances reveal a highly flowed thinking.  The thinking implies that we can mitigate one evil by comparing it with another bigger evil. 

This is lethal thinking.  Because such thinking eventually can justify any evil.  You trivialise one evil by comparing it with a bigger one which in turn can be trivialised by further comparison, and it can go on ad infinitum.  No evil is serious enough.  Even Hitler can be exonerated.  You only need to find the right comparison, the right arguments.

If there is much corruption in India, that corruption also has to be dealt with in the right way instead of using that for mitigating apparently lesser evils.  If there is discrimination in the name of caste or class, that evil has to be dealt with instead of using it for justifying other evils. The moment we start this sort of justification of evils by comparing their degrees, we are perpetuating a system of evils.  Perhaps we have already done that: perpetuated a system of evils.

27 comments:

  1. When he was arrested, Sreesanth began shouting and claimed he had close connections with the Kerala and Maharashtra chief ministers, after he was accosted by police for alleged spot-fixing. He also handed over his mobile phone to the police officers asking them to call the chief ministers. Police sources said Sreesanth was drunk at the time of his arrest and he mistakenly thought he was being detained for drunkenness.

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    1. Sreesanth never imagined that he would be caught on the wrong foot in this play field of gambling since it was sponsored by powerful godfathers. So it's natural he thought he was being arrested for drunkenness. Even womanising would have been ok!

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  2. The concept you have elucidated so beautifully is prevalent not only at a macro level but deep seated in our society at most miniscule levels. At home or family as well often some people getaway with a lot more than others due to some bias (often gender) and also some mistakes are overlooked because worse things have gone by.

    The thinking as you rightly put is one of the most self destructive activities. They ensure complete annhilation because afterall now the task is to remain at seventieth floor because remember there will always be a penthouse...

    Richa

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    1. True, Richa, it's a very common problem. As you say, it exists even at the family level, personal levels. All the more reason why we should think about it seriously.

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  3. It is scary that a calamity does not strike at an individual, a community or a nation at the right place when it comes to India or in particular Kerala. Deviations from the normalcy happens all over the world, when the news of match-fixing came against Hansie Cronje of South Africa, there was an uproar of shock from the entire nation. The news came from the Delhi police, India, was seemingly one reason for that uproar. However, it was nothing of the kind coming from the Keralites transfixed by class-caste matters.

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    1. When DYFI decided to stop their congenial pastime of hartals and bandhs and gheraos (none of which is Malayalam word) and chose to take their protests online - using social networking - I thought that Kerala was going in for a consciousness raise. But it seems that DYFI is only up to a new trick because the old tricks have failed. There is no change in any consciousness level in Kerala at the grassroots level, or any level for that matter.

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  4. Well said. Bringing someone else down or passing on the blame to someone else does not exonerate us of the crime we committed. If that were to happen, then no one would ever be guilty of anything.

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    1. No one would be guilty, exactly. This is what people want when it comes to themselves.

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  5. Well said. We do have a tendency to escape the main issue and catch the bull by the horn

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    1. We are taking the bull by the tail, vanderloost :)

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  6. I agree to this and this is really a heartening issue...people with power are seldom treated like those of poor...let alone the caste and other differences in our country...and people often think they can justify all their wrong deed as almost everyone is corrupt...so neither they worry about the circumstances thereafter nor by the punishment they may suffer...!!!

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    1. There's something that has to be rectified at the roots...

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  7. Agree hands down that, each of the issue has to be dealt with on an individual basis. One crime, no matter how big or small it may be, cannot be compared with the other for the purpose of justification.
    Time and again, political parties can be seen indulging in acts like this, where they justify their inabilty or corrupt officials with that of the other. This mentality has to stop.

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    1. Corruption of all sorts has become so rampant that people have begun to take it for granted. The situation is such that if you are not corrupt today, you are seen as a fool or incapable person!

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  8. I wish to sincerely thank you for the blogs uncomfortable people and Kingdom of evil. In both these writings you have expressed what any common man in India truly feel confronted with such ordinary situations.

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  9. This holds good for media also.
    It was railgate scam few days back. And now IPL scam and railgate is forgotten. Tomorrow we will start a fresh scam.

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    1. Corruption has become an accepted aspect of normal life. That's the tragedy.

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  10. To finally say it out loud that I love your writing I present you a leibster award :) Congratulations!

    You can pick it up here:
    http://subzeroricha.blogspot.in/2013/05/my-first-leibster-award-d-d.html

    Happy blogging :)
    Richa

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    1. Thank you so much, Richa. I do appreciate your award.

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  11. I am going slightly off track here because I am talking about different levels of corruption here and not about different levels of people (?). Do you remember Kaushik Basu, adviser to the MoF? He categorised two types of corruption, one trivial and the other, obviously, non- trivial. That way lies classification of people - trivial people who are, ironically, the powerful, and the others. The "trivials"set the bar for corruption for the others to aim for! The argument in Kerala on Sreeesanth must be seen as justifying the others reaching for the status of "trivial"!

    RE

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    1. Yes, Raghuram, not only Kerala, the entire country is asking more and more people to achieve triviality.

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  12. Corruptions ! so many of them , different versions. The Scape-goats too ! This is one instance and there are many more too in this so called evil kingdom

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    1. I have just taken a holiday from all of them, Uma.

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  13. Unfortunately, this is not an isolate incident. Day in and day out, people use this kind of twisted logic to justify their cheating.

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  14. Fully agree, its hightly dangerous to forgive somebody on such grounds. But this seems to be the case everywhere.
    Take Chennai for instance. Chennai is in the process of re-introducing Meters in Auto. Auto Unions argument is " When people can pay 500 to 1000 at a Pizza outlet, why cant they pay & support Auto Families. This is the argument put up to avoid meters. Highly irresponsible, they make it feel as if - only Chennai Auto guys have families. How do Auto-drivers from other states strive and earn a decent living without meters?

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  15. He was a genuine test bowler. Still remember the way he sent back kallis in south africa.Alas !

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