The Marans. The coal allocation scam. The spectrum scam. Robert Vadra and DLF. Most recently, Karthi Chidambaram.
On the other hand, Vyapam. Pankaja Munde’s chikki and biscuit scams. Raman Singh’s 36,000 crore PDS scam. More recently, a rice export scam. This report today about Anandiben’s daughters and land allocation.
And those are only the ones I recall off the top of my head.
Scams have long since ceased to matter in terms of the loss to the country and its economy; they have become talking points in an endless gotcha game played out in television studios and by the semi-professional social media apologists on either side.
The latest scam hits the headlines, and it is “But when your guys did X, where was the outrage?” And meanwhile, for all the talk — by all political groupings — about the scams of their opposite numbers, nothing ever gets probed to a conclusion. By either group.
The thought occured while I was cleaning up/clearing out my Evernote archives just now, and came across this story:
Arvind Kejriwal has been rightly pilloried for forgetting to act on his allegations of corruption against Sheila Dixit by the BJP. Here is another case of amnesia afflicting a party soon after coming to power. The Rajasthan BJP has had a Rs 3,40,000,0000000 memory loss over corruption. What was a Rs 3.4 lakh crore scam for it before the Vidhan Sabha election has now become a zero-loss legitimate deal for it. And what exactly has changed in the past four months? Only the party in power and the chief minister.
In the run up to the Assembly election, the BJP had issued a ‘Black Paper’ on graft under Ashok Gehlot’s government. Apart from the usual punches at Robert Vadra, whose case we will discuss later, the biggest allegation against Gehlot was that his government had granted mining lease to a company considered close to the Congress.
“The lease granted for mining minerals in the Aravalli hills is against Supreme Court orders. This is a Rs 3.4 lakh crore scam,” the BJP alleged.
But the view from the chief minister’s room has changed now. In an affidavit filed before the High Court on Wednesday, thegovernment justified the lease and argued that it should not be cancelled. It said complaints against the lease were found to be incorrect.
Can we at least stop pretending that one side or the other is squeaky clean? Can we stop pretending that governments and the political formulations behind them really give a fuck?