ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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गलती और उसकी राजनीति

The translations of EPW Editorials have been made possible by a generous grant from the H T Parekh Foundation, Mumbai. The translations of English-language Editorials into other languages spoken in India is an attempt to engage with a wider, more diverse audience. In case of any discrepancy in the translation, the English-language original will prevail.


In recent times, open confessions by political leaders that in their political judgment and decisions they have committed errors have become quite a rare virtue. Many leaders do not opt for a confession as they do not have a stake in finding the truth. However, there are a few who, in their spirited efforts, have demonstrated the ethical stamina to openly confess the occurrence of an error in their political judgment. Thus, a lack of confession on the one hand and its articulation on the other suggest that there is both a troubled and complex relationship between an error and the politics of its rectification. Thus, in a kind of transparent but uncertain politics, an error becomes the logical necessity to strengthen the moral foundation of politics through its rectification. The uncertain nature of politics tends to provide space for learning from experience and reaching towards a benign end.

Error can occur on two basic counts: first that there is a fixed aim to approach, and second, that this aim has to be approached in political conditions that are both transparent and at the same time quite uncertain. Put differently, if there is a prior given, a straightforward road map or the perfect blueprint, there is little chance for an error to occur. This, by and large, is true of left politics in the country. Arguably, these forces seem to have treated politics as a sphere of certainty regulated by codified principles. Infallibility of principles may, therefore, convince or prompt the political leaders, particularly those who are Gandhian and left-leaning, to treat even a forward-looking opportunity as a regressive error. Such principles that regulate politics will not entertain an idea where error is considered as a missed opportunity.

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Published On : 20th Jan, 2024

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