We are poised to get a new President. UPA (led by Congress Party) has proposed Pratibha Patil, NDA (led by BJP) has proposed Bhairon Singh Shekawat, while the rest (comprising many regional parties, which formed a new front called UNPA) proposed Kalam once again.
The newspapers and media are having a field day, the blogs and forums are filled with many opinions. What is my take on this?
First, I don't think we need a President. We have had so many presidents. Of what use were they to us? Other than the fact that we remember their names for the sake of answering exam questions and quiz tests, we don’t really associate them with anything remarkable. What did KR Narayanan do? Can we name a single worthwhile act? What did illustrious Kalam do?
The worst punishment you can give to a very dynamic and effective individual in
Why do we need this figurehead anyway? It’s such a waste of time and resources, time and money. I believe strongly that we don't need a President of India. Instead, the Prime Minister post can be combined with this post, and he/she could be elected directly by the people (instead of intermediaries who seem to hijack the will of the people).
Merit and President of
On one of the forums that I was discussing, one commenter suggested that the contest between Kalam and Pratibha Patil will be a contest of merit and quota politics.
Now if Kalam accepts, then this will be a contest between merit and quota politics.
I don't know what is so meritorious about Kalam? Is being an engineer and heading a missile program a necessary qualification to become a President of India? Or being a bachelor or Muslim a qualification to become a President of India? What is merit got to do with becoming President?
If ever there is any qualification, I would assume that it would be some experience in politics of
Indians grow up NOT knowing what merit is all about. They want to associate it with everything including elected leaders of
Come to think of it, Indians CANNOT have Bill Gates or Steve Jobs EVER because we will always measure a person by his degree, which school he went to in kindergarten, which college he attended, how many certifications he passed, what was his rank in IAS, etc.