I realize that the connotation behind the words Public Service is that it's an act of helping others without expecting anything in return. And that's probably why we use the term to describe what elected govt officials do. But I've always wondered, is it fair to expect govt officials to not have other sources of income, apart from their govt. salary? I know govt. posts come with a lot of perks, but what's wrong in wanting more, provided that it's not coming through bribes or other illegal means?
You may argue that if they wanted to make more money, they could have chosen another profession. But tell me, just because a barista, hotel manager or an airhostess is in the service business, do they stop wanting to make financial gains? Then how is public service any different? Who gets to decide that elected govt. representatives are not to make money on the side? The way I see it, we choose a few people from amongst us to govern us and they carryout their responsibilities like any other job.
While Gautam Gambhir may have chosen the wrong meeting to miss, I don't think he was entirely wrong in choosing to go to Indore. Neither do I think that it's wrong for Shashi Tharoor to do a standup set on Amazon Prime Video. Or for Rahul Gandhi to go AWOL once in a while. Or for Trump to have his kids manage his businesses when he's POTUS. But I agree that probably Sachin took it too far during his term as MP.
But, Gambhir missed a very critical meeting given the current circumstances.
Our politicians must be held accountable for everything that's happening in their constituencies, but they are entitled to have their sick-days and hobbies as well. Being in public office is no joking matter, and it should not be taken lightly. It's a noble profession like being a doctor, a teacher, or being in the military. But the point is that's all it is, a job/profession.
BTW, I'm no fan of Gautam Gambhir. Didn't like him as a player, don't like him as a politician.
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