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.
That's all they're obligated to do. As long as they do their jobs right, they can choose to do whatever they want to in their free time. They should be able to earn more, or go on a vacation, if they choose to. Just 'coz we elected them, and our tax money pays for their perks, we don't get to tell them how to lead their personal life. Imagine how we'd react if our bosses did that! As long as they don't look to profit from their post, I don't see what's wrong in moonlighting in some other trade.
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.