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Overnight transfer of two IAS officers: Will it be a tipping point to Mysuru version of “Arab Spring” ?

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The real purpose was to stop the land grabbing activities exposed in T M Vijay Bhaskar’s report. To achieve this unstated goal, they exploited this perceived differences to their advantage

Bhamy V Shenoy

Mysuru: Political leaders and bureaucrats must have thought that they resolved the
media hyped tussle between previous DC Rohini Sindhuri and MCC Commissioner Shilpa Nag by taking an easy way out by transferring both of them.

But we knew all along that the real purpose was to stop the land grabbing activities exposed in T M Vijay Bhaskar’s report. To achieve this unstated goal, they exploited this perceived differences to their advantage.

What was not anticipated by the decision makers was the likely reaction from the public. They must have thought that Mysureans will remain quiet as in the past and soon forget the sordid chapter in Mysuru’s history. But they were dead wrong.

I am sure that politicians must have been surprised by the anger and frustration expressed by netizens on the social network. It is gaining momentum as days go by.

A change.org petition drive started by a concerned citizens’ group has already attracted signatures from more than 135000 – a rarely seen phenomenon. To my pleasant surprise I have also found several activists – young and old are working to use this opportunity to finally expose all those leaders who have amassed enormous wealth over night. While hard working graduates after several years of study are barely able to earn a living, here are some leaders without starting any industry are able to earn crores through corrupt practices. Earlier such frustrations remained only below the surface.

Now it is being expressed in petition drives, WhatsApp, exchange of emails and facebook conversation in social networks to ask what should be done.

Some concerned individuals have come forward to take the initiative of approaching the courts by filing PILs. To my knowledge there are at least two serious attempts to file a PIL in the HIGH court appealing for the reinstatement of Sindhuri to enable her to complete the task she had started.

One such PIL is by a young High Court lawyer from Mysuru. Another is by a senior semiretired politician with clean record who could not sleep after learning about all the land grabbing activities.

All of the above reminds me of Arab Spring which started in Tunisia in 2010 which has changed the political landscape in the Arab land from Tunisia to Egypt to Libya to Syria and Bahrain. It was only a small incident
of police ill treating a youth selling vegetables and demanding bribes.

Frustrated by such corrupt practices (Like in Mysuru, corruption was rampant in Tunisia), the young vendor set himself on fire and died. To the shock of the world, Tunisians rose in revolt and the long time dictatorial ruler had to leave the country. Now they have democracy there.

Will Mysuru be lucky to have our own version of Arab Spring kind of peaceful revolution to first expose and then to prosecute all those involved in land grabbing adapting Mahatma Gandhi’s satyagraha principle. Such land grabbing has resulted not just in spreading corrupt practices every where, but affected our planned growth of the city. Many of our lakes are on the verge of disappearance (Kukkarahalli and Lingambudhi for example) and some have actually disappeared ( some in Bogadi and Keragalli).

Green areas of Mysuru has declined with each successive master plans and we the public have been mute spectators.

Will the public finally get up and get involved in this movement? One easy way is to support all those who are getting ready to approach the court seeking justice. There are other ways of writing to CM, seeking the publication of Vijay Bhaskar’s report, filing RTIs to find out what the government has done on the report, etc.

Let me end up quoting the inspiring words of Swami Vivekananda. Arise, Awake and Stop not till the goal is reached. Here the goal is to expose land grabbing activities of corrupt and to recover all those properties, start restoring lakes and green belt of Mysuru.

(The writer is founding working President of Mysore Grahakara Parishat)

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