It takes a billion hands to not grease the palms

All kinds of trippy adjectives have been used since Tuesday. That he is the Mahatma of the 21st century. That this is the second freedom movement. That this is India’s “Egypt Moment”. Etcetera. The TV channels, as usual, bring breathless voices and feverish images as if it’s the end of the world as we knew it.

Does ‘Anna Hazare‘s “fast-unto-death” in support of the Lokpal bill drawn up by NGOs and c-soc (civil society) mark a tipping point in the battle against corruption? Or is this another passing cloud, much like the “citizen’s anger” after the November 26, 2008 siege of Bombay?

Over as soon as the candle light goes out; as the OB vans move out?

The answers will be known the next time you offer (or are offered) a bribe, but make no mistake, across the country, the shared anger has ignited bushfires of hope, gasping for oxygen against the cynicism that a million scams and scandals have bred. Like in these bright eyes in Bangalore, on Thursday.

Photograph: Karnataka Photo News

Also read: Scams, scams, scams: Has liberalisation worked?

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