20    Kingship Duties and Rama Rajya

A King is expected to be an earthly version of God, responsible for creating happiness and welfare, preserving security and prosperity and punishing the evil and disobedient. He is expected to set examples, without favour or fear.He should be above suspicion or indiscipline, promote competition and justice, encourage diligence and duty. His Coronation is a multi-splendered spectacle with elaborate Rituals ans Sacrifices, fun and fanfare, feasts and festivities and gifts and gratitudes to poor and unpriveleged. On taking over the Kingship, he makes a series of appointments and postings of Priminister and  Ministers, Top Officials and Advisers and a whole lot of Workforce at various levels.A Military General has to be a Kshatriya or Brahmin, a Treasurer has to have keen knowledge of Jewels, a Charioteer should be an expert of horses& elephants as also an outstanding ability of conducting chariots with alacrity on the battle fields, Doctors of experience and proven merit, and likewise persons of outstanding ability in each and every discipline and tested loyalty to the King and the Court. Each official of any level has to be well behaved, honest, diligent and above all types of temptations.There has to a completely decentralised system of Governance, within a well- set and publicly announced framework of Rules and there could never be an exception unless with the approval of the King who makes the Law or its Interpretation.There has to be a strong and widespread network of espionage and surveillance to the grass root levels to protect the interests of the Kingdom, the King, Officials and law-abiding citizens. Criminals are severely punished and Loyalists are assured of peaceful existence.The course of Law is not only just and swift but also should look to be convincing, transparent and unambiguous. The fiscal and monetary policy of the Government should also be uniform, impartial and well defined.Taxes are fixed as per the Sacred Texts and the process of tax collection has to be smooth, timely and automatic.Defaulters or protesters have to get opporunities to approach the Concerned Officials.Property Rights are also to be well defined, especially in respect of the poor, women, children, orphans and disabled and regular courts of civil and criminal cases are to be dealt with within approved time frames.There are various techniques used to let the offenders make confessions, the most significant ones being, ‘Sama’( persuasion), ‘Dana’ ( Gifting), ‘Bheda’( divide interests), ‘Danda’( punish), ‘Maya’(Decieve or create make- believe situation),’upeksha’ ( ingore) and ‘mayajal’( jugglery). Punishments accorded to offenders not only punitive but more than that they serve as examples to ensure that others perpetrate similar offences. For example, a thief who steals Gold or Jewellery has his hands cut.A Brahman who provides wrong or misleading witness would be banished from the Kingdom. In case anybody kills cows, horses, elephants or camels would be summarily executed. Cases of abduction of a woman, or of poisoning, arson too attract execution. Disloyalty by a woman to husband or vice versa have their facial parts cut, torn by dogs and paraded in public.

 Rama Rajya: The perception, as to how a King should govern his Kingdom and the Subjects, was illustrated by Lord Rama to Laxmana.Agni Purana has described Rama’s Percepts of an Ideal King: A King has to create wealth, increase it, protect it, and donate it. He should be humble-the humility arising out of victory, essentially after defeating the human senses of revenge, anger and retribution.He should be strong, magnanimous and forgiving, kind and protective. His support to the inferior and the needy is as significant as to punish and uproot the wicked and harmful. The human vices of greed, lust, dishonesty are but the reflections of a sick mind, which has no conviction or courage or helpfulness to the needy. Rama also advised considerable patience to deal with the timid, haughty and hurtful as these are indeed the traits of a villian. Once there is no ray of remorse and there is no trace of recovery from the pent-up senses of ego, impoliteness and audacity, then the time to end the culprit has arrived.

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