In the previous episode we had commenced to witness an important advice from Vidura with respect to earning wealth. Vidura clearly says that a king should earn wealth only via legitimate ways and means and if a king tries to amass wealth through an illegitimate way, it would backfire at him at some point in his tenure of office. Of course for the today’s context we can equate the word “King” to an “Administrator” of a state or a country. Vidura continues to list out several important aspects that are directly applicable to today’s administrators. We shall witness Vidura’s explanation first and then go into the applicability of it to the modern day.
Vidura continues to “poke” King Dhirdiraashtra thus: “Oh King! You’re refusing to go by the path of “Dharma” only because of your status and position of being a king, isn’t it? Just for a thought, let us assume that you are not a king and you’re in an opposition party! Won’t you ask the same question to the ruler if you’re the leader of the opposition party? Hence, you’re taking harsh and unrighteous decisions only because of the “Status” that you possess today! A king should know exactly how to use his powers in a diligent manner and not to misuse it just because he is sitting on the throne! For instance, a King should know exactly how much of wealth is present in the treasury of the kingdom. Moreover, a King should also be aware of his age and his capacity to perform righteous actions according to his age. Only if a king exactly knows all these aspects, he can be successful!” Vidura beautifully puts forth these points in the following sloka thus:
“Yah pramaanam na jaanaati sthaane vriddhau tathaakshaye!
Koshe janapate dhande na sa raajye na thistathe!!”
Thus a person, who does not know about his “limits” and is not aware of his responsibilities towards his kingdom, can never be a successful king! “Sthaane” means “Status” or “Designation”. “Vriddhau tathaakshaye” means, “profit” and/or “loss”. “Koshe” means “Gajaana” or “Treasury” “Janapade” means “country” or “Kingdom”. “Dhande” means “punishment” as many of us might know. Thus, in all the above-mentioned aspects if a person does not identify his limitations while being in that position, he is termed as an unsuccessful king.
Thus, just because if I have the position and status of an “Administrator” and I tend to misuse it to amass enormous wealth, it would give me extreme pleasure at this point in time. However tomorrow if someone else is going to adorn my status as an “Administrator”, he is going to start investigating into all the irregularities that I had committed in my last term and for all what I’ve done, I’m going to face the punishment! This is what Vidura explains here that just because a person is a king, he cannot and should not misuse his position to harass people and amass huge amounts of wealth!
Now how relevant is Vidura’s explanation in today’s world! In fact, I needn’t even explain the relevance here because each and every one of us are witnessing similar cases almost every passing day! If we take the example of India alone, how many politicians do we see today with tainted and tarnished images? Everyday we hear of some politician or the other getting involved in amassing “disproportionate assets”, involving in corrupt activities like bribery, stacking huge stashes of cash in foreign banks, amassing excessive amounts of expensive goods like gold, silver, high-end mobiles phones, high-end cars, etc. As a responsible citizen of India, do we have the guts to ask these third-rated politicians as to what is his source of income to buy such expensive items for themself? Afterall we should realize that these third-rated corrupt and anti-national politicians are eating away our hard-earned money that we pay as “taxes”. Do we stand up as a country and ask them for accountability? The sad answer is “No!”
Worse than all this, politicians are brazenly supported for their illegal activities by our judiciary system, perhaps the most incompetent of all countries in the world put together! I know that I’m making a blunt statement, but this seems true in many examples. Let us think for a minute – On an average, what is the time taken to close one case of corruption challenged upon a politician or a bureaucrat? It is pathetic to note that the average time taken for the closing of one case is about 10-15 years! If this is the situation, how can we expect these uneducated politicians to be honest? If the law of the land is made stricter and only if the stick called “punishment” is shown to them, these fools will realize their folly!
Hence to summarize, Vidura’s explanation here is that, a king should not misuse his powers to amass wealth in an illegitimate way, which sadly our modern-day so-called “Administrators” are sadly doing! Thus, unless the law of the land becomes strict with intense punishments for such heinous crimes, things would not change for good. Hence let us hope and pray to Bhagawan that things change in the near future for the betterment of our country! Let’s wait till the next episode to continue our discussion more on this important aspect! Stay tuned! 🙂