Lok Satta Party President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan today announced that a national Public Policy and Advocacy Center would be established at Hyderabad soon as a non-party, civil society initiative to study in depth the country’s problems and offer innovative solutions.
Addressing a media conference after a month-long, coast-to-coast visit to the US under the auspices of People for Lok Satta, Dr. JP revealed that thousands of Indians transcending religion and region, language and caste, are ready to join the mission to transform India. India has the potential to become the second largest economy of the world next only to China by 2039 provided it undertook institutional reforms. Most present day problems of India can be traced to our failure to implement the values enshrined in the Constitution. The Lok Satta believes that India can be transformed constitutionally, peacefully and democratically. The prerequisites include decentralization of power through strengthening of the third tier of government, ensuring rule of law, eradication of corruption, provision of quality education and healthcare to all.
Dr. JP recalled that almost all the stalwarts of the freedom struggle ranging from Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Prakasam to Dr. Ambedkar, Rammanohar Lohia and Jayaprakash Narayan returned to India after foreign education to not merely fight for freedom but also for enshrining values in politics in the country. In a similar fashion, most of the young Indians in the U. S. are ready to become partners in rebuilding India as the educated, middle classes and the youth have abdicated their responsibility and caused the present political crisis. Inspired and enthused by Lok Satta’s articulation of meaningful politics and they way it lived up to them, young NRIs have formed People for Lok Satta on their own. The Lok Satta is optimistic of their providing leadership to India now.
To enlist their support and make them partners, the Lok Satta would fight for voting rights and dual citizenship to the nearly 30 million Indians scattered all over the world. Although they constitute only a miniscule portion of India’s 1.2 billion people, they have skills, talents and leadership qualities which are precious to India.
Asked how the Telugu-speaking people in the U. S. viewed the demand for State’s bifurcation, he said the consensus was they should not make it the central issue of their lives. They opined, “Let us disagree without being disagreeable as the issue is decided based on facts, logic, and national considerations.”
On contesting byelections to the State Assembly caused by resignations on the Telangana issue, Dr. JP said the Lok Satta party would take a decision once the election notification was issued, but added, the Lok Satta did not believe it could take up educating people when they were seized by emotions.
He reiterated his view that caste could be eradicated in the long run through inter-caste marriages and the Government could encourage them by giving certain incentives.
He called upon people to say ‘no to caste’ in census enumeration although he favored enumeration of backward classes, without reference to their caste/sub-caste on the lines of SCs and STs.
On Maoist violence, he said that violence and counter-violence have no place in democracy as a ‘policy of an eye for an eye’ will leave the entire society blind. He added that Maoist violence was one more testimony to failure of the leadership to implement the Constitution. The real answer lies not in repression, but in creating opportunities for every Indian irrespective of birth, decentralization power, and rebuilding Indian Politics on moral foundations.
On the huge revenue the State realized by way of liquor shop license auctions, Dr. JP said the Government believed in keeping people in stupor to deflect their attention from its atrocious governance.