I indict the leaders because they proved themselves incapable of any insight. They could not and did not see issues and situations in their mutual inter-relationships. Instead, they depended upon certain moral cants, and political fashions, and individual points of honour for their light.
I indict them because they have proved themselves incapable of any foresight. They failed to prepare and plan, organize and train for the struggle that was coming. On the other hand they depended upon their speech-making and essay-writing, and emotional slangs (like the ‘final plunge’) of dubious political effectiveness and revolutionary achievements.
I indict them because they have proved themselves incapable of any retrospection. They have failed to inquire into the causes of the failure of the movement and to take any lesson from it. Instead, they believe that owning and disowning, blaming and blessing can replace the need of an intelligent and honest appreciation of the causes of failure and trying to remedy them next time.
I indict them because they always belittled and insulted those (people like Bose and Jai Prakash) who had any conception of the national goal or who appreciated the magnitude of the problem, or the broad sweep of strategy, the intensity of the struggle ahead, and the national urgency of fighting out the issue, and the inspired impatience to win the battle.
They are not equal to the responsibility of a nation’s leadership. They can neither read history, nor take advantage of it, not shape it; nor listen, follow and respect those who can do it.
I shall close with an appeal to all those who have an intelligent and critical interest in our national politics. Our leaders think and behave as if leadership is a privilege which anyone can earn if he has enough money and leisure and if he can afford to come out periodically to appear on the stage or platform to treat an admiring audience to some moral slangs and political slogans. We should see that leadership is also a responsibility, a care, a trust, and those who offer to shoulder them are also accountable. Is it not a reflection on India’s thinking revolutionaries to find, that after such a criminal mess-up and fiasco, as the 42 movement, the leaders after their comfortable refuge in the prison, should again go about with the same old highly self-satisfied looks, indulging in the same promises and hopes, believing in their ideas—or rather the lack of them—their audience and of course their speeches, in the self-same way, in the same state of complete self-delusion and self-hypnotism, without being even once challenged or questioned?