Playing favourites..

The other day, before the Rail budget was announced, we were watching NDTV and the news anchor was telling us how West Bengal is looking forward to the Railway Budget, because ‘traditionally’ , the state from which the rail minister hails, gets a lot of benefits.. new trains, station improvements and all..

Both husband and I were quite surprised to hear about that ‘expectation’. That, it is perfectly acceptable for a Railway Minister to favour the states that they hail from! Why? I mean, it just does not make sense to me. Firstly, why should that expectation be there ย  and secondly, ย why should it be accepted as normal!

Would we be just as happy if the Prime Minister announced some ‘extra’ schemes for the region that he came from? Or if a CEO of a company said that he would hire 50% of his employees from a particular region? Or if a project manager in a company decides to staff his team with people from his area? Won’t we all be appalled and disgusted at that? Then, why is it so acceptable for a Union Railway Minister to favour his/her state?

Isn’t it at odds with the ideas of democracy where every body is equal.. Shouldn’t Union ministers be thinking of the whole of India rather than making sure that their constituencies/states get some benefits from their stint at the centre? If they did want to do some good for their constituencies – surely, there are other ways of going about it.. When in positions ย in the Union Government, should the focus not be entire India instead of their home states?

34 thoughts on “Playing favourites..

  1. That is India my friend.. we are first in pointing out other’s favouritism.. still if given a chance.. we would reap all benefits of it..

    Exactly my point – it has become a norm for us – to expect favouritism.. so accept favours.. Doing things the correct way, is forgotten and will probably be laughed at..

  2. oorja is coming first everywhere today !!!! this kid is completely jobless on saturday and blog surfing to the hilt !!!

    Just because you are not first!!! Somebody is sounding very jealous ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. and Lalloo is yelling everywhere that Patna was not given what it deserved ….

    We would have been surprised if Laloo had not said it ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. It should be like that… !! but but… reality isnt ideal… !!

    I know! I just feel bad at how, every body just accepts it.. The media will raise issues of all kinds – but when it comes to these sort of things – they also go with the flow..

  5. This is how the things are working here Smitha…

    some radical changes are needed to stop this… all the politicians concerned about is their win in their state and not India’s win in world’s stage..

    Yes, you are right – ‘their win in their state and not India’s win in world’s stage..’ That is the sad part.. Nobody is really concerned about India as a whole..

    If this trend continues we must start another trend of giving minister post to the persons from every state in round-robin fashion ๐Ÿ˜€

    Yes, and then we will have some more quotas for that too ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. But thts how it is & it is expected of them.
    I remmeber my father in law saying abt RK Narayanan[our former president] tht the people of his village in Kerala were very upset with him coz he didnt take advantage of this position & do anything for them.

    Yes, I heard about this too.. It is sad that people expect all this.. If there is an MLA or an MP from the neighbourhood – all the issues there, just get solved miraculously.
    There used to be really down-trodden area in Jamshedpur which got an instant makeover when a MP had a house there..

    Also reminds me of a similar behaviour on a smaller scale…10-20 yrs back when people somehow made it to the Gulf & Americ the whole village[at the very least the relatives] wd expect tht person to arrange to take them along the next time he came visiting;-D
    Oh yes! That is there too.. Favours are the way of life.. sad, isn’t it?

    p.s: LOL at hitchwriter’s first comment ๐Ÿ˜€

    p.p.s: ummm…whts round robind fashion ๐Ÿ˜ฎ
    I think it means that every state will get a representative – one after the other..

  7. We watched that and found it really odd. Y the hell were the journos posing that qs atleast? Mamta di yahan se hai; aapko kya umeed hai unse? What is the whole fun in having a Central Govt then?

    Exactly! It is so irritating that the media who otherwise will highlight every little thing also feels that the expectation is entirely legitimate. We have got so used to it!

    Exactly – why have a central govt at all??

  8. yeah..unfortunately that is how it is…
    Sad, isn’t it?

    added you to my blogroll
    Thank you so much!


  9. This is unfortunate smitha.I remember when PV Narsimha was PM people used to say that he didn’t do anything to his village.Now CM of AP has done every possible thing to his village.He along with Lalu changed the route of a train and made it to pass through CM’s village.

    Yes, while what PV Narasimha Rao was the right thing.. It is sad no, that such blatant favours are rewarded…

  10. You have raised a very fundamental and disturbing question that people have forgotten to ask only because politicians have so badly corrupted elementary norms of governance that the country has simply resigned to this distortion of democracy.

    Yes, you are so right – ‘country has simply resigned to this distortion of democracy. ‘! That is what has happened.. We have resigned to things being the way they are..

    The media, to my mind, are willing collaborators in this sordid scam because they are the first to accept all this nonsense and then influence the nation into accepting it. Guys like Narasimha Rao, and now Dr Manmohan Singh, who stand apart from the crowd in this respect are the odd men nobody wants to quote as examples anymore.
    Yes, the media are certainly willing collaborators.. It is sad that they do not even cringe while saying such stuff!!! It is totally accepted as the way things are..

    What is happening is sad and what is sadder that things are likely to get only worse.
    I know.. and it really saddens me that there seems to change on the horizon..

  11. Mani Aiyar got defeated because he did not do anything (!) for his constituency!

    Round Robin idea is good, I think. Every state will improve and the ministers and people will be happy!

    Funy, when we think about it! Then why the voting system?!!

  12. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    u know smithu, once when i was watching mallu news, they covered a news item on a bus accident in kanpur or someplace in maharshtra…so the news reader says, “35 people died, 3 were malayalees”

    HOW DOES THAT MATTER??? human beings lost their lives here…families have lost members…unless they would also give names of those malayalees, so maybe thier families watching might know of it…i do not see why that mention!! ๐Ÿ˜

    now this….its actually announced on TV?!!!


  13. Smitha, when i read about all this, I find it strange. I’ve never heard of such things happening here in the UK so why it takes place in countries like India that are “meant” to be more “forward now” is beyond me. ๐Ÿ˜•

  14. Smitha, it’s all about power and votes…If ministers don’t favour their constituencies, they don’t get elected, period…That’s the way things are (unfortunately)…Selfishness is name of the game…

  15. Couldnt have agreed with you more,Smitha. But that is the sorry state of our country.And its a pity that not much is being done to change that.

  16. This happens all the time. That is one reason Kerala always cries because it never gets anything ๐Ÿ˜€

    I know it is no laughing matter but I don’t know what else to say. Somethings are now such that we believe this is the right way.

  17. That’s Indian politics, Smitha!

    Since Mamata Banerjee is thinking about the next West Bengal assembly elections, the whole of West Bengal state will benefit. Otherwise only her constituency, Kolkata south, would have benefited. We should consider that a small bit of consolation! ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Indian news channels! ๐Ÿ˜
    Just let the words flow in through one ear and flow out of the other.

    That is true – but the expectation is there.. it is not something that these guys made up..

  19. Honey, it is due to the cheap populist strategies that they adopt. Otherwise why should she have opposed the establishment of the Nano plant in Bengal? Any idea why Bengal lacks in progress while Gujarat progresses?

  20. Btw, how did that test drive go? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    It was fun! And I drove too – though it was just around our estate ๐Ÿ™‚ but it was something! I am just waiting to get my license to start driving!

  21. Smitha this is so ingrained in us that we dont even think twice about it now ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    I know! We now, forget about thinkng twice – we just expect it!

    imagine!! and then we wonder why we are still divided !!
    Exactly! If each person helps or does business only with ‘his kind’ – what else can we expect?

    Loved the question you raised because many of us take this as another instance of chalta hai!
    It is sadly, much much more dangerous than Chalta hai ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    you know it amazes me that we dont even see anything wrong with it!
    I know! As we watched the anchor and the journalist on the scene – we were shocked to see their matter of fact expectations.. Clearly they felt nothing amiss!!

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