Last month, BCCI veteran Niranjan Shah gave a rather controversial statement. Calling out the double standards, he said, “ If the Indian president can be well over 70 years of age, why can't the BCCI administrators work beyond that that age limit.” He was fuming over the age limit prescribed by the Lodha panel.
"As long as you are fit, you can work even till the time you are alive. I call this age discrimination (what is being proposed by the Lodha panel)," he added.
Come 17th July and India will get its new president. While Ram Nath Kovind, Governor of Bihar, is NDA’s presidential candidate, the opposition has zeroed in on Meira Kumar, former speaker of Loksabha. Both Kovind and Kumar are in their early 70s and soon one of them will join the illustrious list of seventy-something personalities that hold some of the most powerful offices in the country. Incidentally, they will be replacing our current president, Pranab Mukherjee, who turned 81 last December.
While elected member choose presidents in both the cases, it’s a bit absurd that BCCI president has a retirement age while the country’s president does not! Clearly, the latter one is more important position and is also a matter of national integrity.
Taking a cue from mythology, such double standard was clearly exposed in Bhagwad Gita by Krishna during Mahabharata war. On the thirteenth day of the war, Arjun’s 16-year-old son Abhimanyu was killed in a joint attack by Kauravas, which was against the rules of the war. Later, on the seventeenth day of the war, Karna’s chariot got stuck in the ground while fighting with Arjun. He had to lower his weapons and get down to release the chariot wheel from the ground.
Knowing that this situation exposes him to a possible attack, he reminded Arjun of rules of engagement of war and asked Arjun not to shoot him while he is weaponless. However, Krishna shot back exposing Karna’s double standards when he willingly took part in joint killing of Arjun’s son Abhimanyu and disrobing of Draupadi in public. Reminded of those fateful events, enraged Arjun released his arrow and killed Karna instantly.
Relating this incident to the current situation on the age of retirement of elected representatives, one thing is clear - there should definitely be no room for double standards. While most of the Indian politicians take pride in citing Bhagavad Gita in their speeches, will they ever follow the teaching of Shri Krishna?
Title image: The Me Dots