PA Sangma, then Speaker Lok Sabha, circulated the document of the Lal Bahadur Shastri Memorial Foundation and People First for consideration in the golden jubilee special session of parliament held in 1997, with following message:
MESSAGE OF PA SANGMA
"The thoughts contained in the study contain Gandhian ideals. The study calls for a whole new system of governance based on truly autonomous democratic institutions upward from villages. It also calls for the creation of a Sovereign Rights Commission and referendum to bring about changes through proactive initiatives on the part of citizens of the country. The study is indeed thought provoking and deserves nation-wide debate when we celebrate the golden jubilee of our independence."
He also made public statements suggesting closure of ministries such as agriculture and called for a second freedom struggle.
The legislators ignored the document. They instead adopted a resolution commending the achievements since independence!
The nation can survive mis-governance and corruption, but not intellectual dishonesty. The people must compel the political system to explain why it wants to remain wedded to an exploitative system.
The political system will benefit most from true democratic reforms. Political power and presence will increase at all levels. Wealth generated at the local level will strengthen economic activity at higher levels. The political system, instead of being castigated as at present, will be respected by society.
It does not behove the leadership to push these issues vital for the survival of the nation under the carpet, as it did in the golden jubilee special session. The Prime Minister, in his Independence Day address to the nation this year, said that retaining colonial practices has been a grave mistake. We urge him and other political leaders to save the nation by instituting a mechanism for realising genuine democracy through referendums.