On Thursday, I attended the second Minoo Masani Memorial Lecture at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan auditorium in Chennai, organised by the Indian Liberal Group. The speaker was N. Vittal and he spoke on "Corruptions mocks at liberalisation". I will post a summary of the lecture separately.
It was heartening to learn of an organisation like the Indian Liberal Group (ILG) and what they are upto. I've been pleasantly surprised to discover such a group, having never heard of them so far. I believe there is a crying need for a group such as this to help activate and mobilise the citizenry and I have decided to become a member of the ILG. What about you?
The purpose and objectives of the ILG have been very simply stated.
To foster the values of
- social justice, and
- equality of opportunity
based on the Liberal belief that
- liberty with individual responsibility are the foundations of civilized society;
- the State is an instrument of the citizens it serves;
- any action of the State must respect the principles of democratic accountability and the rule of law.
The primary objective of the Indian Liberal Group is to defend the fundamental Liberal belief
- of the right of individuals to personal liberty, liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;
- of the right of association;
- of the right to private property;
- of free choice of occupation;
- of the right to information so as to enable the exercise of one's right meaningfully.
While tolerance is integral to Liberalism, the Indian Liberal Group will not tolerate Intolerance. The Indian Liberal Group
- believes that the business of government is governance not business;
- is opposed to any kind of monopoly;
- believes that technology is needed to promote human development and draws attention to the fact that the growth of Liberalism has been contemporaneous with the development of science and technology;
- affirms that active and participatory citizenship at all levels is essential for sustaining a liberal and democratic society.
Above all, the Indian Liberal Group believes in the need to uphold values and excellence; character and integrity. To develop men and women with faith in such principles is the real task and goal before Liberals.
The ILG has a web site at http://www.liberalsindia.com/, but the front page points to the wrong page. There is a wealth of content on their web site behind the front page, but still accessible including various position papers, information about the organization and recent press releases. They also publish a magazine called Freedom First and a newsletter - the Aug 2003 issue is available online.
The First National Convention of the ILG was held in December 2002 at Hyderabad and the Second National Convention is to be held in December 2004 at Mangalore, Karnataka.