Viewing the birthday advertisements in the newspapers for MLAs and Ministers is an awful eyesore. They are also sponsored by builders, contractors in exchange for illegal favours done. There should be a probe on the source of money for these advertisements. These advertisements far from being sincere felicitations to wish the person the very best in the coming year is a petition to tender for a contract or a favour to be requested or for favours received. Sincere and genuine birthday wishes should be personal between the two people not in a public forum hoping that the recipient will read it and be obliged to return the favour in kind for the money spent by the advertiser.
Yesterday was Nuvem MLA Wilfred D’Sa’s birthday. Last year he was only a MLA and there were only six advertisements in the Herald. This year he besides shamelessly embracing the BJP is also the Chairman of the very lucrative South Goa Planning and Development Authority (SGPDA) which is infact a gold mine. There were a whopping 33 advertisements in the very same Herald. All that money could have been gainfully used to get rid of all those potholes in the Nuvem Constituency. The mere fact that the number of birthday advertisements are dependent on the status of the recipient shows that this is a subtle form of corruption.
A few days before their birthday, Ministers and MLAs make a farcical appeal to the people not to release any advertisements but their PAs and henchmen coerce businessmen and contractors in particular to dig into their pockets.
Why are there no advertisements on birthdays of former MLAs and former Ministers? It only proves that Power corrupts and absolute Power corrupts absolutely.
There should be a broad consensus within all the political parties that this culture of asking people to release advertisements should be totally stopped. All that money could instead be channelized for the welfare and betterment of our society.