The dismal democracy

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By: Mintu Sarma

In democracy people have the right to choose their own leaders or more appropriately their representatives, considered to be the best government structure as citizens can enjoy enormous rights and freedom which are nearly unquestionable and not destructive to the society itself. If we dive deep into history, we learn that the genesis of democracy started near about fifth century BC in Athens and during 2500 years of journey the democratic system has fascinated the world by its quality of equality. Initially democratic system was suppressed by dictatorial power and flourished only after World War II. After the disintegration of the Soviet Union, democracy dominates the world elegantly.

Peoples’ desire to translate political and development thought democratically sometimes found stymied by power crazy voracious leaders and democracy starts to fall over. For example, several times flourishing democracy was crushed down by military rulers in Pakistan. To establish democracy, there were pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong and other parts of China. People were dreaded as they were unaware what the future had in store for them under an autocratic regime. Recently one more page has been added in the history of betrayal to democracy as it has been trapped in Myanmar (Burma) in February 2021. In the morning of February 1, 2021 democratically elected “National League For Democracy (NLD)” were thrown out by Myanmar’s military socially known as Tatmadaw and enacted Military rule over the country whimsically. Diligence and persistence of citizens have not been paid off as they fail to restore the lackluster democracy. The death knell of hopes and aspirations of civilians have been permeated all over that southeast Asian country as more than 550 people have lost their lives and all-around 2700 have been detained and tortured recklessly by Tatmadaw. The military coup led by Min Aung Hlaing has nipped the democracy in by detaining president Win Myint and elected state counselor AS Suu Kyi. Vigorous protests have erupted all over the country and abroad against the military’s merciless activities, snatched many innocent lives including women and children. On Myanmar’s Armed Forces Day, March 27 last, the capital Naypyidaw witnessed the mass slaughter of more than 110 people including children that increased the death toll suddenly. No one can think that the army could come down so harshly against its own country’s people to bring an end of the agitation. According to the news channel, the situation has deteriorated so badly that it may trigger another civil war like the Karen conflict of 1949. Day after day the people around the world are watching with horror at the photos and videos of brutality emerging from the streets of Myanmar which deals with gross human rights violations. People are trying to enter India through Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Manipur to save themselves from barbaric attack by the junta armies. According to the UN Deputy High Commissioner for human rights, the current crisis in Myanmar was “born of impunity”, with a long-standing lack of civilian control over the military and its disproportionate influence in the country’s political and economic institutions…” Antonio Guterres, the UN Secretary-General has emphasized that a firm and unified response from the international community is required to resolve the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar. Meanwhile, the UN Human right commission has adopted a resolution condemning the military coup and use of lethal force over unarmed civilians. Though the expression of concern across the world has been aired, it is not sufficient to discontinue the horrible situation shortly. Though the Myanmar crisis is the country’s internal matter vis-à-vis a matter of humanity also and needs to save the innocents from the shadow of brutality and dire misfortune. Myanmar has turned itself into a death valley.

India has always believed in the spirit of democracy and reflects unity in diversity in front of the world body. After abrogation of article 370 international observers visited Jammu and Kashmir to visualize ground zero report, on the contrary the huge catastrophe over the people of Myanmar seems to be ignored by the international community. The international body has not come up on the way it should have been. The hardheaded international pressure over military rulers may re-establish democracy; the impunity enjoyed by the military may be detrimental for democracy and humanity as well. (The writer is a Research Scholar at Gauhati University and can be reached at 9954539319/e-mail: [email protected])

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