- Kuwait Times Extra
While traveling with a delegation of journalists to India, I had the privilege of attending a parliament session in New Delhi. I could not stop myself from comparing between the Indian and the Kuwaiti parliaments. The set up is very similar to the parliament in Kuwait. Only, this building in India was historic and a sign of how old this country’s democracy is and how different it is compared to Kuwait. As soon as the political session began and the chairman walked in, a small group of lawmakers started shouting in a chaotic manner. I felt like I was at home again. The scene in Indian sessions is very similar to the fiascos in Kuwait but the substance and subjects that are being discussed are far from similar. For example, in India they don’t discuss banning Valentine’s Day or the number of foreign workers in the country or defending a citizen that has broken the law!
Speaking of the law, when I arrived at Indira Gandhi International Airport, the first thing I saw was the son of an influential Indian family drunk and acting like a hooligan (after all, every basket has a bad apple). The police tried to control him calmly but he resisted and started shouting things like “Do you know who I am? Do you know who my father is?” (two commonly used questions in Kuwait when anyone with ‘wasta’ is stopped by the police). The young man refused to comply with the police and was egoistic to the extent that he squared up to a police officer.
Within seconds the police showed him what they thought of him and who his father was and the guy was handcuffed and in tears saying: “Please, call my daddy. I just want to go home, I am sorry.” If this had happened in Kuwait a whole tribe would have invaded the airport, smashed a few officers and police vehicles and walked away. If anyone gets caught or arrested, then a few familiar parliamentarians would rally outside the police station, the court or Erada Square trying to make heroes out of those arrested thugs. Unfortunately, the government will give in and that thug will face the next parliamentary elections with the agenda of grilling the minister of interior and getting rid of the officers that caught and interrogated him.
I am beginning to understand why some Gulf states have Indian police officers. I guess it helps them implement the law when they don’t care who they are dealing with and who their father is and that’s exactly what’s missing in Kuwait. If the government does not put its foot down and protect its dedicated employees that implement and respect the law, then unfortunately many people will let things go and not take responsibility purely out of fear of parliamentary prosecution. This is starting to sound like a mafia rather than a parliament.
By Abd Al-Rahman Alyan
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