Looking Inward- the lesson of Mumbai

I have written a short piece here in India Together on the lessons that we can learn in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks. Essentially, I argue that our governance institutions are seriously undermined and there is a governance crisis in the country. Except for a few commentators (like Arun Shourie and Pratap Bhanu Mehta), very few have focused on the crisis of governance following the Mumbai attacks. The majority seem to be happy to blame an outsider for our problems (which while probably true in the current incident will not help us in future), but I argue that blaming the outsider is of little use when we are facing an internal governance crisis. I stress the need for developing a personal, societal and institutional integrity if we are to revive our governance mechanism.

Written by
Harish Narsappa
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  • It would have been better if you could share the piece with us.

    The crisis of governance can be solved only after understanding what governance is. Understanding the import and content of the word is not the responsibility of those who are governing alone – those who are governed have an equal responsibility to understand the mechanism and proactively involve itself the governance process.

    The crisis in politics today is that there is a big gap between those who are governing and those who are governed. Either of them does not know what the other wants, is upto or what they should do.

    The root of this problem lies in the fact that we are yet to have a completely Indian governance system which takes into consideration the views of those who are governed directly. Decentralisation was a good attempt but it has not achieved uniform application for some reason.

  • Governance does include in its import the need to have inclusive development where the country as a unit moves forward, and capability of each is accounted for in development policies. Such policies need to traverse the gamut of diversity found in Indian society, such that, no form of violence (terrorism, naxalism, maoist violence, farmer’s violent protest etc.) could find congenial conditions for growth.

    As is said the piece, blaming everything on outsiders doesnt help us in future, nor does it teach us any lessons as a democracy.