By Ananya Guha
And now it is the Meghalaya Governor. Close on the heels of an MLA arrested for raping a minor girl, Meghalaya is in the news once again. And the one culpable is none less than the Governor, for making sexual overtones with a lady an aspirant for the post of Public Relations officer in his honoured office, but his behaviour with the lady was dishonourable and abominable. Reports in the media two days back revealed this disgraceful episode. Pilloried by the media the Governor’s replies were vague. He was not sure about the time of the interview. How?? He was not sure of how many people were in the selection panel. Again a big how? Are selections taken so casually and flippantly, or was he mulling for the ‘best’ choice? When you treat people as commodities then things are taken for granted, and because of the associated power, you think you can do what you want?
Again saying that the candidates were like his children or grandchildren children, is uncalled for and, wishy washy. Reading such statements one felt suspicious, and sensed a clever ploy. All this time the venerable Governor in public gatherings talked about acculturation, and how he was bent in promoting the culture of the state and a people. Was that his way of surreptitiously doing it? Many people from mainland India come to North East India with pretty conceived notions of women here. There is a commodification of values, which hurts sentiments of the people here. Much of the alienation that we talk of can be ascribed to reasons such as this, vulgar and profane. The same set of thinking is prevalent in New Delhi and other metropolis. This stems from sheer holier than thou sacrosanct attitudes, smeared with supposed orthodoxy and conservatism.
And I have witnessed this since my college days. This is a shame on the so called mainstream India. What happened is shameful. Reports say that the Governor has stepped down, and that complaints have reached the PMO, better late than never, dear Minister, sorry Governor.
And what hurts most is that outsiders come, make platitudes on indigeneity, culture, blah blah with heinous and ulterior motives. But a Governor of a state behaving such egregiously, fraught with lewdness and sexual drives is something that never happened here before. We can only cry, Shame on You. Reports say that this is subject to inquiry. The fact is that his staff has also complained to the Prime Minister. Mainland India should learn one or two lessons, coming here, displaying interest in indigeneous cultures, with ulterior motives in business, wooing the local people, taking advantage of their naiveté isn’t what national integration is all about. In fact this will have a reversal of effects.
About the Author: Ananya S Guha lives and writes from Shillong in North East India.