Sunday, March 24, 2013
Misuse of Power by the Police
Today I experienced how the taxi drivers must feel when they are foulmouthed by policemen of different denominations. And now I feel can empathise with them somewhat. The fact is I love driving around, but am always a careful and law-abiding driver. I give way to uphill traffic, I signal my intentions much in advance, people in a hurry I always make room for, any vehicle with a lamp and in a hurry I always give side to, specifically ambulances, fire tenders and vehicles with their emergency lights on etc. I also give way to the many red light vehicles that always seem to be in a hurry, even though it gets my gall, (more than anything else I feel that the drivers in these vehicles are aiming to please the VIP occupants by speeding so that the flag up front flutters). When I come across pilot vehicles I automatically swerve to the side. When it is the pilot of the state’s number one citizen, like everybody else I gave way. Oh yes we drivers know when number one is coming along; you just got to notice the panicky reactions of the traffic police, the civil police on duty and even the home guards on traffic duty (who are given all the dirty work by their police brethren)along the sides of Sikkim highways. Thus today around 1 pm while driving up to Gangtok, I came across the CM’s motorcade coming down – probably on the way to Rabong or wherever. Like every other vehicle I too headed for the side of the road. However, since it was at the bend of Central Hotel, below the old Lal Bazaar Super Market, and there was a stopped downhill facing vehicle on the opposite side of the road, I didn’t stop straight away as the rushing vehicles might have hit me and slowly crept forward toward the gate of the ‘Lower Secretariat’ to give more space to the CM’s convoy and stopped. The pilot vehicle whizzed by but not before some idiot in the vehicle yelled at me –“EH SIDE GAR AIE”. Boy was I cheesed off. Here’s me a humble, law abiding citizen (voter), a very careful and safe driver with a high sense of road and driving etiquette and I get bawled at for doing the correct thing by some idiot in the pilot vehicle. Police everywhere in the world are trained to be civil. You got to take your hats off to the British police who are all civil and polite even when they beat the shit out of suspects and convicts (so I’ve been led to believe). The US cops we see day-in-and-day-out in the movies –“Sir please raise your hands – you have the right to remain silent etc.” What is wrong with our administration/government/authorities that policemen have no respect for the common man? They get high and mightier specifically when they are on escort duty etc. Anyway after I sat down to think about this (I get angry very late, sometimes a day or two later) I realized that there are many, too many, things wrong in Sikkim and changes are really needed sooner than later. By changes I don’t mean replacing one necessary evil with another one. I think it’s time common, sensible and ordinary people and voters (like me for example) started looking at alternatives and started making a stand for themselves if Sikkim is to survive even as a semblance of the Sikkim that we all once used to know. So help me God. The above was posted on FB by N G Dorji Khangsarpa. I was under the impression that the Sikkim Government was different from others. But I seem to have been wrong. Power goes into the head very fast.