Let us make the space we share better and bring the change we desire. Author is Indian Muslim, a Public Figure, Social Activist, Blogger and Media Personality. On mission to build a givers world rather than takers.
Press Note: 13-May-2015“Swaraj Abhiyan welcomes the Supreme Court order curbing Political misuse of government advertisements”There has been a gross misuse of public funds in the country by successive Central and State governments in issuing advertisements on public money which are used to project political personalities. This not only involves a waste of public funds but also allows the ruling party to get an unfair advantage over their rivals by use of public funds, and also promotes a personality cult. This misuse has been rampant and cuts across parties and governments. Every day we see large advertisements and hoardings where faces of political leaders and their lackeys are thrust upon the people, sometimes even for congratulating leaders on their birthdays etc.Today the Supreme Court, acting on PILs filed by Common Cause and the Centre for Public Interest Litigation has come down on this practice and while large accepting the guidelines framed by an expert committee headed by Professor Madhava Menon, had directed that henceforth, government advertisements cannot be used to project political personalities or parties. In particular, they cannot use the photographs of politicians and Ministers or other government functionaries in such advertisements. The only exception would be in the case of the PM, the President and the Chief Justice of India, and that too only when they themselves permit such photographs to be used. The court has also ordered the government to appoint an ombudsman of 3 independent persons to oversee the implementation of this order.Swaraj Abhiyan welcomes this order and expects that this should be largely able to curb this menace of abuse of public funds through advertisements. It is however surprising and unfortunate that the court has made an exception in the case of the PM who is also a partisan political personality. One hopes that the requirement of the PM himself approving such use of his photographs would sufficiently deter the misuse of this power. Otherwise there is no doubt that CPIL and common Cause would approach the court again for stopping this as well.
Swaraj Abhiyan Media.