Manish Tewari says Team Anna consists of "armchair fascists, overground Maoists, closet anarchists...lurking behind forces of right reaction and funded by invisible donors whose links may go back a long way abroad". I for one would not bother to argue with someone with a misplaced superciliousness permanently pasted on his face whether or not Team Anna is all or any or none of these.
I would, however, like this self proclaimed defender of the nation to clarify whether or not he is a patriot. Its not even a phrase difficult to define, unlike "fascist", "anarchist" "Maoist" etc etc. A patriot, just in case the Congress spokesperson is ignorant of the meaning, and his actions lead me to so believe, is someone who is proud of his country for what it does, and is eager to correct its deficiencies, as distinct from a nationalist who is proud of his country no matter what it does .
No patriot would be blind to the fact that India is sinking deeper every day into the morass of corruption, and that the ordinary citizen is finding it more and more difficult with every passing day to live a life of dignity. No patriot would question the imperative need for strong action to be taken to root out corruption, or the ordinary citizen's right to demand such action of the government. No patriot would rail against ordinary citizens who make that demand. To the contrary, he would feel impelled to join forces with them.
Team Anna is a group of ordinary citizens who, with patriotic zeal, have been vociferously demanding of the government that meaningful action be taken to eradicate the scourge of corruption. One may argue about the merits of the anti-corruption measures they are advocating, but no patriot would attempt to weaken and destabilise the powerful citizens' movement which Team Anna has ignited by hurling misleading labels at them. Such action smacks of utter disregard for the responsibility that every patriot has ------ to correct the deficiencies that his country suffers from.
Hence my question to Manish Tewari ------ are you a patriot?