Friday, September 11, 2009

Speaking With a Forked Tongue

It is generally said that politicians habitually speak with a forked tongue- implying that they say one thing and mean another. They behave in a duplicitous manner. They say one thing but do something very different.

A few weeks ago 'in the backdrop of the drought situation which Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described as "bad", Congress and UPA government planned to go on austerity mode with party chief Sonia Gandhi asking her MPs and MLAs to accept a 20 per cent cut in salaries for a year'.

But it appears that two of the government's own ministers, Krishna and Tharoor 'have been staying in five-star hotels, in the national capital for the past three months in the absence of official accommodation'.

Also, a 'near revolt in the cabinet has forced the PM to loosen the austerity belt'.

And now Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi has said that 'he believes a politician has a “duty” to lead an austere life at all times'.

Saying one thing and doing another is not a new tendency. But today, we tend to justify it.

In earlier times the tendency of a good or righteous person to think, speak, and act in the same manner was extolled.

This is evident in the following Subhaashit.

यथा चित्तं तथा वाचो यथा वाचस्तथा क्रियाः l
As (their) thoughts are, so is (their) speech, as their speech is, so are their actions,

चित्ते वाचि क्रियायां च साधूनामेकरूपता ll
Thus, the thoughts, the words, and the actions of good/ righteous persons are identical.

I think we could do with some such persons in Indian politics today!


Vinod_Sharma said...

Sharad Pawar says he is too huge to fit into an economy class seat; Farooq Abdullah says there is no space for his long legs there! Someone forgot to tell them that though they can actually afford a fleet of aircraft of their own, they should travel by train...then again the question will be, which class!

The only guy who lives a truly austere life that can rival that Baba Ram Dev is Baba Rahul. He wars only an ordinary kurta pajama (when he has to appear in public, cheap sun glasses bought from Saojin Nagar and an imitation Chinese watch. Even though he stays in a palace guarded by hundreds of commandos, he prefers to spend his nights with likes of Kalawati...even though his Spanish girlfriend Veronique does not approve of these one-night stands, that too with dalits!

Sandhya said...

Before election, our politicians say that they are contesting to serve our people. Then the 'people' becomes 'myself and my family'.

Tharoor and Krishna have not got any conscience at all. Maybe, because of this nature of theirs, they are surviving in Indian politics.

I too admire Rahul Gandhi, for the way he is, at present. He seems to be very comfortable with the small villagers as well as with the modern, educated people.

Subhashita Manjari said...

Nice post!

Here's another subhashita that conveys the same meaning.

मनस्येकं वचस्येकम्
कर्मण्येकं महात्मनाम् ।
मनस्यन्यत् वचस्यन्यत्
कर्मण्यन्यत् दुरात्मनाम् ॥

Great people are consistent in thought, words and deeds. In contrast, the words of wicked people are totally different from their thoughts and their actions totally disagree with their words.

manju said...

Vinodji- In George Orwell's chilling novel, 'Nineteen Eighty Four', there is mention of 'doublethink' which means to tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them.

Politicians like Sharad Pawar and Farooq Abdullah seem to be indulging in this!

Sandhya- Maybe that (not having a conscience) is the reason Tharoor and Krishna are surviving in Indian politics.:)

manju said...

Subhashita Manjari- Welcome!

Thanks for the Subhaashit.

Vey nice blog you have- do you post a Subhaashit every day?

Subhashita Manjari said...

I intend to post one subhashita everyday as long as I can.