Saturday, October 16, 2010

Nobel laurate Liu xiaobo - against autocracy


I have only exercised the right to free speech, to which I am entitled under the constitution. I have done nothing unlawful. Though charges have been laid against me, I will utter no words of complaint
           –Liu Xiaobo, 23 December 2009

China's political reform [...] should be gradual, peaceful, orderly and controllable and should be interactive, from above to below and from below to above. This way causes the least cost and leads to the most effective result. I know the basic principles of political change, that orderly and controllable social change is better than one which is chaotic and out of control. The order of a bad government is better than the chaos of anarchy. So I oppose systems of government that are dictatorships or monopolies. This is not 'inciting subversion of state power'. Opposition is not equivalent to subversion.
Liu Xiaobo, Guilty of 'crime of speaking', 9 February 2010

In an article published in the South China Morning Post, Liu argued that his verdict violated China's constitution, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the United Nations. He argued that charges against him of 'spreading rumours, slandering and in other ways inciting the subversion of the government and overturning the socialist system' were contrived, as he did not fabricate or create false information, nor did he besmirch the good name and character of others by merely expressing a point of view, a value judgment.

On 8 October 2010, the Nobel Committee awarded Liu the Prize "for his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China. Usually there will be celebration across the country, when someone from their country gets this prestigious award. But in China it arosed mixed reactions. The Government took steps, to prevent him from getting this award, hearing that his name was nominated for the award. Liu is a political prisoner in China. Charged with allegations that he was spreading a message to subvert the country and authority, he was sentenced to 11 year imprisonment by December,2009.This was after he launched a signature campaign to support his views-  calling for greater freedom of expression, human rights, and for free elections through Charter 08. He had been jailed three times earlier, for engaging in protest against government, though he did not do that is anything against law. He advocated that real democracy should prevail in the country. He has called for democratic elections, advocated values of freedom, supported separation of powers and urged the governments to be  accountable for wrong doings.

Nobel prize was the feather in the cap of Liu since he has been awarded with many such awards, for his non-violent means of protest against the autocratic nature of Chinese communist government. The chinese government resorted to all means to see that the message that he has won Nobel prize, does not reach his ears. The media critized China for this. Unable to exercise further control, the message was conveyed to him through his wife Liu Xia. However she was under close scrutiny and prevented from making any remarks to media or any other persons. She is in house arrest and  even while doing shopping, she is being tailed by the security personals. Chinese government also openly critized the Nobel prize committee and threatened the Norwaygien embassy in China of dire consequences. The question now is “ Whether Liu xiaobo’s wife will be allowed to collect the prize on his behalf?”
            Countries with autocratic leadership are nothing but bigger jails. They deny even the basic human rights like right to speak for their people. They put tight sensor over the media. Google was made to operate from Hongkong because of the control exercised by Chinese. In Srilanka too, Rajapakse has tied the tongue of the media and the people( We all know what happened to his war hero Sarath Ponseka).Autocratic Government like this wish that people should hear and see, what the government wishes them to hear and see what it wishes them to see. They were not even allowed to think on their own.
            These autocratic leaders never seem to learn the lessons from the life of Hitler, Parvez Musharaf etc. This kind of leadership cannot last for ever. One day it will emerge as a big protest and put an end to their regime.
     Though persons like the British Foreign Secretary William Hague, U.S  President Obama and the Dalai lama, praised the decision of the Nobel Prize commitee, silence is the reply from countries like Russia and India. India did not want to rub with China, since the relationship is not already smooth and fears on cut down of some economic benefits from China.
Its sorry to note that we were afraid to speak the truth. On the other hand, we are ready to do something that is unlawful and against the society, if a countrys autocratic leadership demands such action.
This is the greatest weakness of human beings. We just behave like animals. We do not bother about moral values, what is right or what is wrong, when it becomes the matter of survival . We know in our consious, what we do is wrong. But we go ahead to do what the organization says. Afteall, our survival and security matters most
It is sorry to note that we were afraid to speak the truth. On the other hand, we dare to breach the trust of people and to do things that is harmful to the society, fearing our own security. Whether it is the country or the person, rule is the same. Play to safeguard your interest.

And whenever, a person dares to speaks the truth in an autocratic environment, he is being branded as a subvert, who is against the country, society or the organization. The Country or the Organization will see that his wings are broken, he is being haressed and humiliated.

There is a nice saying in Tamil “ Dharmathin Vazhvuthannai soodhu kavvum. Annal meendum dharmame vellum.Truth may be eclipsed by treason, but atlast the truth will triumph    

Those who have a reason to live, will withstand everything done or happening to him-Nietzsche

Liu xiaubo has a reason. Gandhi had a reason. Che guevera had a reason.

Lets all have a reason to live and lead a purposeful life. Of course, we cannot change everything. But definitely, you can do something which is useful to few people. You not be in the pages of history. See that you stand for justice. When you have an opportunity to prevent injustice, go ahead.
Darwin says It is not the Strongest of the species and not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one most responsive and adaptive to the change will survive. Many are bothered only about mere survival.  They simply adapt to changes.
But for humans, is Survival alone is enough? Don’t we have the responsibility to make this world a better place?

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