By Sunil Garodia
It is very disconcerting that almost all governance failures and tragedies are now being routinely being explained away as political conspiracies, more so when not even one such case has been proven. The latest in the line is the Uttar Pradesh hooch tragedy. UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath has said that he smells political conspiracy in the matter that has already led to the death of more than 110 people. It is disgusting and dangerous that the chief minister is failing to recognize that a corrupt and inefficient administration did nothing to prevent flourishing of illegal hooch dens. Instead of taking district officials to task for dereliction of duty and worse, he is emboldening them by hinting otherwise.
Illegal hooch dens exist in all corners of India. They are sometimes too small to attract attention and at other times they are big enough to be patronized by the local administration and police for the massive kickback they can provide. When the administration and the police are in cahoots with the operators, they try to ensure that the poison being concocted and fed to the public is kept at levels which would harm the body but not kill the drinker. But sometimes greed overtakes prudence and things go awry, as in the instant case, and the fallout is too massive to control.
Adityanath has asked his police force to liquidate all criminals. But it now seems that the order was for those who were aligned to SP, BSP or Congress. There seems to have emerged a new breed of criminals who owe allegiance to the ruling regime and this includes those who have changed affiliations. These criminals are now selling spurious hooch, protecting the cow by acting as vigilantes and fomenting other caste and religion based trouble. They seem to have a free run. The administration must realize that such tragedies are not political conspiracies but are a result of corruption and patronage.
pic courtesy: financial express