BANGALORE: Former Chief Justice of India M N Venkatachaliah on Sunday said that Indian democracy had ‘missed a key’ in the manner in which the country has allowed democracy to function.
Speaking at the diamond jubilee celebrations of the Jayanagar Co-operative Housing Society Ltd, the former chief justice reminisced his interactions with students recently, where one students had asked him, “Is Democracy appropriate to India?”
Venkatachaliah said, “At that point, I felt it was natural that their experiences had disillusioned them about democracy. How democracy has functioned becomes a different question. The discomfort that people feel is a reflection of their concern towards democracy.”
“We must have missed something somewhere. There are 720 million voters here. Still, people are not content. China is three times bigger compared to India, and in terms of cultivable land, China matches up to just 60 per cent of India’s cultivable land. Yet, China produces nearly 560 million tonnes of food,” he said, adding that there were “no takers to fix things.”
Venkatachaliah further added in the list of ten people he greatly respected, five would be bureaucrats. “We have missed the key somewhere,” he said.
‘Can We Survive
Principal Secretary for Higher Education H Siddaiah, who was formerly the BBMP Commissioner, warned of dire consequences in the city if the scarcity of water continued.
“In my time as BBMP commissioner, I undertook surveys that show the rate of infiltration of rain water into the ground is less than 20 per cent, as against 70 per cent 20 years back. This is due to the fact that Bangalore is becoming a concrete jungle,” said Siddaiah.
He asked people to imagine Bangalore without rains for three months. “It is summer and we are unable to bear the rise in temperature. But imagine no rains for 3 months? I have statistics to show that one acre of property can hold 40,000 litres of water. As responsible citizens, we must adopt rainwater harvesting (RWH) in our homes,” he said.