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Monday, 22 August 2011

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Nandan, you too? A story of the turning brain continues…

Isn't it great to see a corporate honcho famous for lectures on social responsibilities and corruption showed drastic changes in his persona. India may see one such corporate honcho joining politics may be through back doors of Rajya Sabha. Only few days back, Ms Aruna Roy's brain turn due to ego and her closeness to government and Madamji. Now its Mr. Nandan Nilekani who has made a 360 degree turn. So turning brains are not solely related to politicians but intellectuals like you and Aruna aunty are also included.

In an interview to a leading daily in India, Nilekani said that the Lokpal Bill was not a “magic bullet” that would eliminate corruption in the country. It could, at best, serve as one of several measures needed to tackle corruption in a holistic manner.

“I am not a great believer (?) that if you pass a law, corruption will miraculously vanish.
(Then what do you think Nandan, do you really have any independent mind now, or did you lose while working with the government?) Nor do I think that creating a huge army of policemen will reduce corruption. (So you do also think that Anna's Jan Lokpal Bill is creating police Raj.) You have to go back and look at the systems. (When did you go back and look at the system. The entire crusade is working on it since over last 40 years. System had not changed till date and India against corruption asking it to change boss. Do you realize that?) I have spent 30-35 years working on how to make large systems work (clearly that means Infosys and other IT organizations, but Boss, Anna spent whole of his life with common man and farmers. He never seat in AC cabins and gave lectures on how to reduce corruption as like you are giving). You have to fundamentally analyse and improve the systems themselves… (Automatic stabilizers? after how many years the problem will automatically eradicated) This (Lokpal law) is just one of the many many things that we need to do. (What are the other things? Please tell us when did you find those other things? Plus when is your employer (government) is going to implement the law? because your Employer is not giving any timeline to India's common man. And boss if you know other important things then why don’t you list them out and give it to the government. You are talking just like Diggy Chacha making claims without proofs.) I don’t think that it (Lokpal) is the only thing we should be doing (Who said you boss that this is the only thing? Many things are planned but this is the first thing is for sure. Anna is planning for crusade over Right to recall of MPs and MLAs. Boss, you stay over there by giving critical opinions in an AC room and discussing about India’s fate. Boss, its actions speak louder than words. Ask your mentor Mr. Narayan Murthy what does he think about Anna Hazare and his movement.),” Nilekani, one of the founders of Infosys, said. “I fully endorse the fact that they want to address the problem of corruption but I think they should look at it in a much more strategic holistic manner and not by just passing a law (so what do you mean? Is passing a law is all futile exercise). This is absolutely uni-dimensional (how many dimensions you want? Why do you look so unclear? Why didn't you give your suggestions to civil society and government, earlier? You seem to be much more uni-dimensional focused on UID project only, suddenly what kind of realization happened in your mind, which gave you such wonderful ideas.),” he said.

Efforts to undermine supremacy of Parliament and elected representatives in legislative matters were “extremely dangerous and completely wrong (boss, Parliament is made for people and by people. Parliamentarians are not kings to behave autocratically. And every law has to change with time and systemic failures. It is really unfortunate that you are saying this which we believed that always open for changes.)”, Nilekani said.

“I certainly would argue vehemently against it. I think we must give credit to them (MPs) and let them make a law (again a joke. Did you read the draft of government's lokpal bill and jan lokpal bill). And I have complete faith that they would come to a right decision (yea fine, but we Indian people don't have faith in them because after 64 years of independence we are not getting the most required law only person like you can trust),” he said. Nilekani said he would be happy to sit down with Team Anna and help in finding possible solutions (Wow, what kind of solutions you have got from those respected MPs, at least show some thought independence don't become a puppet).
“My advice, (Just like Aruna Roy, who was sitting idle in NAC cabin till date. Now, you also woke up for giving advises. Why didn’t you do that earlier? Did you try to prepare 4th version of Lokpal Bill?) to them would be two-fold. Specifically on the Lokpal Bill, I will tell them please make all your arguments to the standing committee (where Lalu Yadav and Amar Singh are members. What happened to your general knowledge? Both had faced accusations of scams) which is the appropriate authority for this (how would you say a committee under government will be an appropriate authority to bring the best law against corruption). Let them debate it in Parliament and let them come up with a law and then abide by the law (yea, that’s fine and we think this is what exactly you wanted to say. But boss, this already we heard from the MPs and by the way after UID many people had question that what did you going to do. They must have got the answers. When are you going to get elected for Rajya Sabha?).

“And the broader thing would be that if you really want to address corruption, it is a very multi-dimensional mosaic of things (What are those? Can you elaborate, please?). When you look at all the issues, you will find that the Lokpal Bill addresses just five per cent of the problem (Boss, when did you make this survey? We thought you were focused on UID project only or was it the side business? or must be few MPs from government might have told you).

“Let’s not try to look for a solution by creating more and more complex laws and creating parallel bureaucracies, a super-powerful guy and expect him to be honest, and creating thousands of inspectors. And also think that this is some magic bullet that will solve all your problems. There is no quick-fix. This requires hard work..., (unfortunately, it's Nandan who is talking all these things. Mr. Nilekani, at least you could have supported something worthwhile happening in India. Everybody became united; everybody came on the roads and wants to express their desire to get best law. If people knew that Jan Lokpal Bill would have created a dictator they would have been the first to oppose but people want their representative to monitor but not toothless as like government wants. Boss Nandan, this is a battle between representatives of people and people and not between government and Anna)” he said.

Nilekani said the Lokpal might not even be a very effective instrument to fight corruption. “You don’t fix problems by creating more layers of inspection. You fix problems by actually looking at the root causes,” he said. (Boss, go and look at the root causes. We don’t have time as we already spent 64 years. And change the minds of people yourself. Don’t seat in your chamber come on the street and tell everybody don’t give bribe and don’t take bribe.)

A project like giving identity numbers to everyone would, on the other hand, go a long way to bring in transparency, and make the delivery of public services more streamlined and accessible. (Boss let the project come on the floor but we want our representatives to be monitored by somebody who is authoritative and can ask question.)

“These things are fundamentally related to changing the relationship of the individual in terms of the public delivery he gets. And that is the kind of reform that we need today to really fix some of these larger issues,” he said. (Yea now you can promote your own efforts). It's unfortunate Nandan really.

When DCFC asked one of the sources of Congress Party for seeing one of the India's best brains turns 360 degree he said "the government had very much pleased with Nandan's efforts over UID project and last year asked him after the project he can find better scientific and technological ways to eradicate corruption. However, Anna took the first mover advantage."

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