Edit Corner

We need to rise above our fears!

I took the liberty of touring the forty constituencies across Goa in order to gauge the mood and sentiments of the people of Goa. But most all to understand what is it that they seek from the people they elect to represent them in the government.

The feedback from the ‘Aam Aadmi’ certainly got me thinking about the simple demands of the villagers in the remotest corners of our state, to the aspirations of the city-folk. And believe me, when I say this, everyone is hoping and praying that Goa moves towards economic growth and social welfare. People want better economic activities, more job opportunities, efficient healthcare services, progressive education and basic amenities to life like regular electricity, water and an opportunity to have a better standard of living.

The true Goa of today is not necessarily along the coastal lines as portrayed by many in films or media-related articles (that is just a small but integral part of Goa); but it is not the whole of Goa. The villages in Goa certainly tell a different story of the virginity and innocence of Goa but its also highlights the need that some of these villages also need to evolve and progress while retaining its charm and tranquillity.

The Goans of today even at remotest village level nurtures a dream to rise above the current shackles of lack of opportunities which exist in our state. They dream of a prosperous and progressive Goa (sadly this being the tag line of the Congress party in its advertisements, is the mission they have never been able to accomplish and I am sure they will not achieve it because they do not have the will-power to do it). And keeping the Congress company in shattering the dreams of the people of Goa has been the BJP, who have time and again raised very serious issues, but have failed to ride it through its logical end.

So then, where is the solution to achieving our dreams. I believe it lies in going beyond our dependencies on our forced elected representatives; our dreams lies in our hands and we have the power to choose our leader – not based on a particular party but on individual merit and the candidates ability to help us achieve our short-term and long-term objectives. This though needs to be looked at as a community rather than an individual dream.

Choosing the right candidate devoid of any fear psychosis or monetary compulsions is easier said than done. The fear I have seen in the eyes of many people to stand-up against the evils of their politicians is real. And while I might want to go beyond and ask them to be brave – do the right thing. I know when I look into their eyes, I see simple people who just want to live a better life and create a better future. They would rather not revolt against the corrupt politicians but expect a miracle of getting rid of these shaddy politicians to happen. I do empathise with them and I understand that fear; most of all money for vote to them sometimes means a lot not because of the money but because they feel that at least they are getting some benefit, which will not last long, however, more importantly they keep the politician of their back and supposedly in their good books.

But this is the part where I don’t empathise or sympathise with anyone choosing to do nothing about the current plight in Goa and voting for a clean candidate with integrity; the part where we later on curse our very fortune on account of the corruption and evils we have to face because we were afraid to do the right thing when it mattered the most – and it matters the most during elections. There is no point in crying over spilt milk.

Fear is a good because sometimes in our greatest fears we do our bravest acts, because we are pushed against the walls and we have no other option but to face those fears. And I think the people of Goa have reached that stage where they have to rise above their fears without counting the costs, because as a state and as people, our politicians have pushed us against the walls. Their bank accounts continue to swell, while our burdens continue to increase.

My appeal to the people of Goa is that we are building on a future for our children, grandchildren and many generations forward. It is important for us to remember that the seeds of growth we sow today is what they will have to live with tomorrow. We need to sow the seeds of fearlessness. We need to make our voice and demands towards a ‘BETTER Goa’ be heard. After all in a DEMOCRACY people power is supreme. We don’t need to fear the corrupt politicians, they need to fear us.

I cannot predict the outcome of the elections, since I am not a soothsayer but what I can gauge is that most people are fed-up with all forty elected representatives in the government. And so much is the anger coupled with fear that I only hope its transcends into voting the corrupt politicians out and ushering a new change for Goa. We may not be able to be successful in knocking-off all forty but even if can strive to remove the most corrupt ones, we would put everyone else on the toes.

Vote fearlessly because in the end we alone are responsible for the leader we select.

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