Nitte Santosh Hegde (born on June 16, 1940) is a former justice of the Supreme Court Of India, former Solicitor General of India and was Lokayukta for Karnataka from 2006-2011. He graced the Investiture Ceremony of Inventure Academy on the 27th of July, 2012 as the Chief Guest. He mingled with the students of the senior school (9-12) after the ceremony and had an interactive Q&A session:
Some extracts from the session:
Q) How long will it take to abolish corruption?
Justice Santosh Hegde’s Ans: Corruption did not start yesterday or the day before, children. It has always been around and it will always be around. The most we can do is stop the growth of it –if we don’t give bribes, corrupt people will stop asking for them. You all must be responsible citizens. Be the face of this nation. If there is something you don’t like, don’t just complain about it. Come up with solutions… Start a revolution!
Q) Statistics show that 33.5% of the population in Karnataka are below the poverty line and our Chief Minister wants to spend 17 crores to appease the gods! What is your reaction to all this?
Justice Santosh Hegde’s Ans: I find all this ridiculous. The preamble to the Constitution of India states that it is a sovereign, socialist, secular country but do we see this in practice? Absolutely not! There is a major drought in our state so our CM would rather spend all his money in ‘appeasing the rain gods’ instead of putting them to practical use? It’s absurd! We cannot throw stones at the Vidhan Soudha; we can only raise our voices against wrong-doings. And they will be heard –if you all stay on the path of goodness, our country will advance to heights we never expected.
Q) What is the secret to your strength?
Justice Santosh Hegde’s Ans: I was raised to live within my means. My parents taught my siblings and I to be satisfied with what we have. When you are satisfied, you can never be greedy. God has been kind to me as I have travelled all over the country and the world and I have learnt much from my journeys. To date, I have been as honest as I can be in every post. If I had to name one, I would say that the post of Lokayukta was the most difficult one. What I learnt is that it is not always about stopping the big scams and saving large sums of money. Sometimes, it is the small cases that matter. The people of this country deserve to have a voice in the running of this government and when something wrong is done to them, they have every right to approach an authority and have it fixed. I felt privileged to be the voice of the people. I tackled everything I saw wrong and never backed down. I believe in fate –what is mean to be, will be. The secret is to not be scared. Be courageous citizens, children. Raise your voice. Make a difference.
Grade 11 AS
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