STEP 1 of the joining process
Dear potential member of FTI,
Thank you very much for coming by. We are looking for people like you who are committed to the long-term success of India as a prosperous liberal democracy. Since FTI aims to guarantee India the best possible leaders for the 2014 elections and beyond, we have a staged process of entry to the team. This page will point you to reading material for you to go through before undertaking Step 2 of the joining process. Reading and understanding this is important. Joining FTI is a life-long commitment to the cause of India, and you should make such a commitment only after due deliberation.
FTI Trust Deed and Rules:
After about a year and half of existence as an informal association, FTI has decided to register itself as a not-for-profit Trust with a range of objectives including identifying and developing leaders. From 1 July 2009, FTI has become a formal legal entity (a Trust). It is important that you are broadly comfortable with the Trust Deed and Rules of FTI: [download id=”26″] and [download id=”27″]
Classical liberal foundations
FTI advocates freedom with accountabilty largely in the manner advocated by so-called ‘classical liberal’ philosophers. You may not have heard of this political philosophy. If so, please read this draft document called, “Are You a Liberal?” which sketches how liberals think. It is not necessary for liberals to agree on everything on every topic, but if FTI gets non-liberals (e.g. socialists, communists, or libertarians) we will never get to any consensus on any policy and become a mere debating society. Therefore, please do make sure you are a liberal as broadly defined.
Highest standards of personal integrity
Personal integrity is absolutely crucial to FTI. We aim to guarantee both the integrity and policy credentials of leaders who will be sponsored by the team. That can only happen by ensuring that persons of integrity join FTI in the first place. One of the questions you will be asked in the form you complete is whether you comply with and are willing to continue to comply with the highest standards of personal integrity? What does this mean in practical terms? While some guidance is provided in the Code of Conduct in the FTI Rules above, it means, among other things:
- strict honesty in public dealings;
- no traces of corruption or any other illegal acts such as tax evasion (dabbling with black money), pending criminal cases (unless demonstrated to have been falsely lodged); and
- and no active support – through direct dealings with election campaigns – of political parties which collect and use black money.Those who have been active members of most existing political parties in India will likely not meet the standard of integrity expected on FTI. However, FTI remains open to considering persons who may have recently joined an existing corrupt party given lack of other options, but who have not yet actively dealt with election campaigns of the party or otherwise participated in its corrupt activities, and who have resigned their membership upon discovering such unethical activities.
On 26 January 2009 FTI released its brochure after extensive internal discussion. You may have already read it. If not, please do do read it by clicking here.
Draft policies released so far
In April, 2009 we released our first draft policy, on religious freedom. Other policies will be released for comment in the coming months. Click here to read our draft policies. These will give you a sense whether your views are likely to be compatible with those of other FTI members. While these policies will be refined over the next little while, and debated actively for refinements, it is unlikely that they will change very substantively.
Past issues of the FTI magazine
Do read the old issues of the FTI magazine to get a sense of how this effort has evolved so far. These magazines will also give you a sense of the key ideas underpinning FTI. Click here.
FTI’s plans and strategies
Click here to find out about FTI’s overall plans and approach towards outreach, communications. While these plans are not final, and will need to be improved through the participation of new members and citizens more broadly, it is unlikely that FTI will shift from these plans and strategies in a very significant way. FTI will take time to build, but once built, it will become a major political force in India.
Internal processes on FTI
If (after you finish Step 1 and Step 2 and choose to apply for membership) you are accepted to the FTI Google Group you will be given access to FTI blogs and FTI’s google group pages and internal documents. However, to give a sense of the kinds of processes under way on FTI, a few internal processes have been published to give potential members an idea of how FTI would feel like when they join. Click here to read about these processes.
Talk to FTI members over the phone
Some FTI members have indicated they would be happy to talk about FTI to new potential members. Here are their phone numbers.
Use of Gmail account recommended while applying
Since most communication of the Freedom Team takes place on a Gmail group, and numerous documents on the group can only be accessed by using a Gmail account, it is strongly recommended that you set up a Gmail account if you do not already have one, and provide it to us it during the application process.
Note that the membership to the FTI Google group is Initial membership to the Freedom Team and formal membership must be taken within two months of joining the FTI Google group. Acceptance to the Freedom Team at that stage will require full compliance with rules of FTI that include, among other things, paymnet of a membership fee of Rs. 2000 per annum.
Joining FTI is a serious (potentially life long) commitment of your time and money. Please do not apply merely to feel good. You will be expected to make serious contributions to FTI’s goals and mission if you decide to join.
Now you are ready to move to STEP 2
This completes Step 1 . Plese go back to the main page and read the table listed under ‘Step 2‘. After that you will be provided a simple form to apply for membership. When completing the form, please ensure you provide sufficient information. The more coherent and persuasive your application is, the easier it will be to join FTI. Please lodge your application only once. It may take some time for our members to respond to applications, given we are all volunteers, but we take care to get in touch with everyone as soon as we can.
Look forward to seeing you on FTI!