Quoting Justice Hegde, since India got independence, we have had about 74 scams, each involving more than INR 5 crores, with the total scam money unaccounted, amounting to Rs 96,600 lakh crores !! All this money has disappeared !! My tax money and your tax money !!
Calling corruption in the country to be basically of two types, compulsive - where the common man is forced to pay a bribe even to get some of his basic rights and privileges, is the most inhuman. The second type, collusive, is not because of any need for money but being infected with the Greed Over Need disease !! The inordinate delay in clearing cases of corruption in the country, some even going upto 18 years, is another cause for people losing the fire to pursue such issues in public fora.
Democracy being the govt of the people, by the people and for the people, all decisions and legislation are for the benefit of the people. The Constitution of India starts with the terms " We, the people of India", meaning the constitution is proposed by the people of India. The representatives sitting in parliament pass legislation only ON BEHALF OF THE PEOPLE, not substituting them .. The people are supreme, not the representatives elected by the people for a five year period !!
Dearth in Honesty to do one's own work is a malaise affecting our country now !
We lack feelings of compassion and concern for our fellow beings, we are just homo sapiens, not human beings. He quoted a Kannada proverb, become what you want to become, but first be a human being !!
He exhorted the students and faculty to "boycott people who are corrupt". (Let us ostracize them from our society ..). Let us not look at wealth to determine the status of a person. How legitimately one has earned wealth is the most crucial and deciding factor of all .. Legitimately earning wealth, as much as possible, is again a right of the people of India ..
To wrap up his talk , it was the lack of understanding of the word contentment and a desire to illegitimately acquire wealth beyond one's needs, that is the cause of all evil. We citizens have to act against this now and act we must !! He did not miss on stressing the need for having moral science / value education and civics to be taught in school to young children.
The sincerity and honesty of the person is evident from the fact that even after holding one of the most powerful posts in the state of Karnataka for over 5 years, Justice Hegde, even now, does not possess a plot of land or a housing site in Bangalore, only a two bed room flat for his family.
Sincerity and honesty is not for everyone sitting at the Bar.. There are distrustful people there too .. A lot of his respectful and honorable colleagues in the Karnataka High Court and even Supreme Court, had usurped such opportunities for their personal benefits, making them ineligible of the respect of the common man. Justice Hegde set the benchmark too high for them to reach or aspire for .. It is a pity that the same people whom we look up to show high standards of probity and integrity in public life, fail miserably to do so !
As a lone exception, Justice Santosh Hegde stands out from among the crowd !! He is not only a proud son of Karnataka, but indeed of the entire nation !! One about whom I can always talk with pride to my grandchildren ..