Friday, December 30, 2011

Match Referees in Parliament Required

I saw Virat Kohli (not a parliamentarian) stop for the briefest of moments after his plumb leg before decision, before walking away in India's match against Australia yesterday, and Ian Chappell, noted that his momentary hesitation could invite a call to the match referees room (most likely for a talk on behaving in a manner against the spirit of the game). A bigger transgression results in fines and penalties, the code of which has been written down.

Now to the Parliament. I read this morning about how a Parliamentarian from the RJD, who did not agree with the now defunct Lokpal Bill, tore up the copy of the Bill (which is amongst the most polite forms of protest in the respected house). Parliamentarians have been known to use more forceful behavior, from physical actions to abusive language, and have zeroed down to certain unparliamentary acts to express their assent or dissent. In assemblies around the country we see elected representatives use bad language, beat each other up, throw furniture, tear up clothes as well.

Why are they allowed to get away with all this? Do they not have a code governing their behavior? Are they allowed to do anything since they are in the Parliament? Our children and youth watch this, and probably believe that these people are elected representatives and this behavior is accepted. Nothing can be more unparliamentary than not letting the Parliament function.

Maybe we could think of match referees to govern the behavior of elected representatives as well. A code that has fines and penalties, and suggests correctional courses, effective communication courses, manners and etiquette courses, duties and responsibilities courses as required. Or if there is one already, to put it to use. Mr. Sharad Pawar who knows the ways of the ICC and the team of cricketers, Azahruddin, Kirti Azad, Novjyot Singh Siddhu, and cricket lovers such as Shashi Tharoor, who are all in the Parliament, can be put together to constitute the committee to share their expertise.

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