What should we, the Indian people, now demand?

Security of the public first, security of the nation next: this should be all the security that should be provided for from public money. From an inclusive security of this nature, security of prominent persons would accrue naturally. Public life comes with its attendant risks [and perks]. Having chosen to enter public life, politicians cannot shy away from the former while enjoying the latter.

Accountability should be automatic. When crimes happen because of systemic failure, of which public outrage is a measure, all the people’s representatives: from the legislators and parliamentarians in charge of the constituencies to the ministers in charge have to be recalled from their positions. This cannot be a matter of choice. The relevant laws have to be put in place for this, as there is a violation of “conscientiousness” that forms part of their commitments to their offices.

Social audits and citizen watch are tools of democracy that are available to the citizens. However, these are not options that can absolve those in charge of governance and administration: they cannot use these devices to paper over their delinquency or to abandon their commitment to duty.

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