Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What a pity!

What a pity that, the Indian premier (Dr. Manmohan Singh) could not be there to accept the salami (salute) from the armed forces on the eve of India's Republic day. I felt really bad about it. Although, not being there to accept a salute does not make any huge difference, I think Indians are unfortunate to have aged PMs and presidents.
     I personally do not believe that someone who is physically unfit can run his responsibility well. That applies more if the person is old (65+ years). How can someone with a major heart problem(current PM) or somone who cannot walk on his own legs (previous PM - A.B.Vajpayee) run the country ? If they are so seriously ill that they have to be admitted and operated upon, will they ever be able to concentrate on what the nation needs and where it is going ? I do not think so. One argument against this would be - operations are rather rare, may be one or two during their tenure. But, the critical point is, they had to be operated because they were ailing since long. Thus, their ailment has always been there. Its just that, it reached the peak when they had to be operated upon.
   Just imagine this - the parliament is bombed while in session, will the PM be even able to run for a few meters to save his own life ? I doubt. And not just the PM, many others also won't. In my opinon, 50-60 is the right age for someone to become a PM.
     The root of the problem this lies in an accepted philosophy in the Indian political arena - age matures the person. In Indian politics, 55 is young and 40-45 is amateur, below 40 is just a  bacchha (a child). 70 is mature, and 75 ripe with maturity. But, at the age of 70-75, the body has wore too much to take the mental and physical load of office. And this is an unescapable biological truth. Age affects the body in ways that can never be reversed (with the currently available technology, i mean).
    One of the organs worst hit by aging is (unfortunately) the brain. Aging reduces brain mass. Scientists say that, people can lose upto 20% of their brain mass by 85. Myelin content in the brain reduces with age. As a result, the brain actually becomes 'slow'. Interconnections between neurons in the brain (called synapses) decrease with age, so the processing power of the brain inevitably reduces. Due to change and imbalance in concentration of neurotransmitters, memory becomes weak and unreliable. What old age brings to humans should not be new to people who have ever lived with their grandparents.
    With such obvious problems that age brings, should we have a 76 year old PM ? Never. Old people should definitely be respected and cared for for what they have done in the past. But their age should not be considered a plus when appointing for a responsible post. And this same is the way of nature - a lion who is the leader of the pack has to retire when he gets old. His age and previous experience beget him no advantage then. But, in Indian politics we do the opposite. I wish and pray that, this philosophy of Indian politics changes soon and, we get to see some young and dynamic PMs in the future...

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Onkar said...

Agreed. Unfortunately in India, someone's ability to shoulder a responsibility is measured in terms of his / her loyalty to a specific party. And this loyalty is measured in terms of the age. When you grow older with a party, the high command considers you as the apt candidate for certain post. This is why we had some people like Sitaram Kesari, Devegauda, Shankardayal Sharma, Pratibhatai Patil, Atalbihari Bajpeyi, Arjun Singh, Pranab Mukharjee and many more holding one of the most strategic positions in Indian politics. One more reason could be the greed of being in power. Some of our politicians are so engrossed in their own world, that they tend to forget nature's call. They sleep in meetings, can't even walk firmly without a support on roads, and these people still rule our government. Certainly a pity!

shubhanan said...

may be its the time taken to climb the ladder in Indian politics? Any young politician would be pulled down by the senior people lingering out there, probably. What you intend is not impossible, but I think is rare and just awaits its time. :|

Pranav said...

What you say is very true, its the loyalty factor that comes into significant play. And selfishness is hardly absent :)

Yes, theoretically quite possible as you say, but will take a lot of time. Lets see...