Wednesday, March 04, 2009

A marred educated young class called MPs

Interesting facts make for interesting reading.

We generally believe that our existing lot of aged politicians should make way for the younger breed that we assume is waiting in the wings to take India to its grand success.For the young guys will bring with them energy and a vision that is best suited to take our country into the future.

Lets sample some facts. Never a harm in looking at ‘figures’, especially if they are well drawn out.

The average age of elected members in the current 14th parliament is 52.6 years. But the surprise comes when we look at our new found partner USA, where the average age is 55.9 years. Japan too has a not so young average age of 52.3.

Is 52 too old an age to be sitting in the parliament?

Various assumptions can be drawn if we compare, say, the US average and Indian average. But if we simply go by the figures, the theory that old legs make the whole system go slow will not hold much weight here. For if that was true, than both US and to some extent Japan would be on par with , if not lagging behind, with where our political structure stands.

My point is that, age, is not the sole criterion which decides how a political structure of the country functions. Agreed that young leaders will be more in sync with today’s demands, outlook, perspective and need but they will also be lacking in experience, teachings that only comes with time, one which is not taught in universities or schools.

So my take is age, rather over- age, is not the ill that ails the Indian parliament. Then what is it ? Maybe Education?

In the just concluded 14th Lok Sabha, 22 MPs had a Doctoral degree, 166 were post graduates and 250 were graduates. This implies that more than 77 % of the total MPs that we elected had a graduate or a higher degree. Is not that a healthy average? Add to it 104 members who are matriculates or diploma holder. And you say ‘Wow’.

Were not we yesterday night grumbling that we are paying the price of an illiterate political class?

Is being educated the only criteria for being a good leader? No, it is not. If it was, then we would have one of the best behaved, visionary political class. And I would bet my every paisa that all of you will agree that they are anything but ‘well behaved and visionary’.

Some may be there, but collectively they appear what they are known as, i.e, ‘politicians”.

It is among there educated MPs, who cry for ‘Z’ security when even a local thug would not even look at them forget about assassination threat and its among them who were caught taking bribe and it is among them who try to fight it out physically and verbally rather than politically.

But they might have a reason. They always do. Yes they have. Their only alibi; they are also humans, prone to ‘occasional’ fits of greed, anger, and similar other vices. Maybe they are more human less political or is it the other way round?

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