Indian leadership needs to wake up to corruption: Sangma


New Delhi : Politicians should stop taking people for granted and the Indian leadership should wake up to the menace of corruption, former Lok Sabha speaker P.A. Sangma said at a panel discussion here Saturday.

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“Despite the 2G scam, the Commonwealth Games scam, all the fiasco related to the Swiss bank accounts, we are still enjoying cricket (World Cup). This is how India is. But there is a limit to tolerance,” Sangma said at former President R. Venkataraman’s birth centenary lecture on non-violence and spiritualism.

The panel discussion on spiritualism made some politicians look within and admit the follies of their community.

“The Indian leadership needs to wake up. The way parliament functions or does not function, the politicians, we all, need to wake up,” he added.

The lecture, the third in the series which saw speakers like the Dalai Lama, Water Resources and Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khursheed, and Sangma, took place at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library.

Speaking about spiritualism, Sangma said that politicians don’t have the right to speak about spiritual values.

“Everyone knows me as a politician. But I think that politicians have lost the spiritual right to speak about spiritual values. So whatever I say, you will not believe me,” Sangma said.

“But in any case, I believe that India is a very spiritual country. Just look at the number of people praying for the Indian team to win the World Cup! Prayers are powerful and I wish all of us similarly pray for the betterment of our country,” he added.

To this, the Dalai Lama said: “Action works more than prayer. I remember the Bihar Chief Minister (Nitish Kumar) had invited me for the opening of a Buddhist institute and said that the state has developed with Buddha’s blessing. To that, I said that if that were true, then Bihar would have developed ages ago – since Buddha’s blessings were always there!”

“What mattered was the Buddha’s blessings in the form of the work done by the chief minister,” he added, much to the amusement of the audience in the packed hall.

Speaking about the need to educate politicians on spiritualism, Khursheed said: “We politicians require education in spiritualism. Religious leaders are sometimes not powerful enough to prevent us politicians from putting a cloud over secularism.”