Publication: The Free Press Journal
Date: March 2, 2002
The naked dance of death in Gujarat
must stop forthwith. If the frenzied mobs do not stop, they must be made to
stop. That is the least the administration in Gandhinagar can do. For, whatever
the provocation - and, we must grant, it was indeed great - no government worth
its salt can allow marauders to take the law into their own hands. Chief
Minister Narendra Modi owes it to himself as he does to the people of the State
to restore order at the earliest. Already, the alleged laxity of the authorities
on Thursday caused anarchy-like conditions in large parts of the State. In
particular, Ahmedabad, that old cauldron of religious hatreds, bore the brunt of
violent attacks. Incensed by the horrendously inhuman attack on the train
bringing back 'kar sevaks' from the Ayodhya, on Wednesday morning, tens of
hundreds of people in the Gujarat capital took to the streets, targeting shops,
homes and other establishments of the minority community.
In the surcharged mood of anger
-when reason goes out of the front window - these mobs torched men and materials
belonging to the minority community. Over one hundred people were reportedly
killed in this macabre death of dance. The forces of law and order were found
wanting in taming the tempers of the mobs who were provoked into action by the
killing in cold blood of their co-religionists a day earlier in Godhra.
While the reaction of the mobs in
Ahemdabad and elsewhere in the State could be ascribed to the red-hot passions
generated by the torching of the two compartments of the Sabarmati Express, the
insanity behind the torching itself was hard to understand. What
kind of a human being can set fire alive to young women, children and unarmed
men in cold blood. And without any provocation. That
of the 60-odd people killed at the Godhra station over 40 were women and
children speaks of the barbaric mindset of the perpetrators.
They were more like biped cattle
than human beings. They had deliberately chosen to target the particular
compartments because these were mostly occupied by women and children. And there
was no denying a pre-meditated plan to torch them.
you cannot produce cans of incendiary material like petrol, diesel, etc. at the
spur of the moment. A deeper conspiracy to cause a wide-spread
communal conflagration in the country cannot be ruled out. The ISI finds it easy
to penetrate sections of our people precisely because it uses the Islamic card
to the hilt and deploys currency notes, genuine and counterfeit both, to turn
Indians into traitors against this country.
Unfortunately, this seditious
compact between the ISI and a section of the Indian Muslims is wittingly or
unwittingly aided and abetted by our misguided secularists. Notice
the muted criticism of the horrific incident of cold-blooded massacre at Godhra
by the so-called secularists and compare it with the hue and cry raised by the
same people at the doubtless gruesome killing of the Christian missionary Graham
Staines a couple of years ago. Nobody in his right mind could have
justified the killing of Staines. No, nobody. But, then, can anyone in his right
mind justify the dastardly attack on 'kar sevaks' at Godhra? It
seems our secularists have two sets of standards to gauge human tragedy.
One is for
people like Staines and other members of the minority community. And
the other is for the large majority community. The cold-blooded
massacre of the 'kar sevaks'does not evoke angry comment from the secularists
and their accomplices among the editorialists precisely because they were 'kar
sevaks'. That would explain why the secularists did not
stall proceedings in Parliament on the Godhra outrage though they were foremost
in creating a nation-wide shindy over the tragic killing of Staines.
In this context, the statement
issued by the AIADMK Supremo, J. Jayalalitha,
is most apt. Chastising political leaders for making a crass differentiation
between violence perpetrated against the majority and minority community, she
said the Godhra outrage should be viewed as a crime against humanity. "
It is very strange and saddening to
see that when such acts are perpetrated against the minorities, all political
leaders rush to issue statements of condemnation. But when persons belonging to
the majority are subjected to similar perpetration of heinous crimes, not a
single political leader has so far issued a statement condemning this barbaric
crime. Such acts of senseless violence should be condemned no matter who is
responsible for them and no matter who the victims are..." For once, we
whole-heartedly endorse Jayalalitha's sentiments.
Indeed, the failure of the
secularists to condemn unequivocally the Godhra incident may well have
exacerbated further the feelings of the majority community in Gujarat. Ordinary
people felt so angry that they took to the streets to wreak vengeance on members
of the minority community some of whose members had perpetrated the foulest of
foul deeds in Godhra.
The secularist argument that the
minority community needed special treatment and protection has over the years
created a Hindu backlash. The secularists with their blind opposition to
anything which respects the sentiments and wishes of the majority community have
only helped to justify the rise of militant Hinduism. The mealy-mouthed
arguments of the secularist establishment fail to convince ordinary Hindus when
they contemplate the grisly wreckage of the Sabarmati Express. Given the fact
that Muslim communalism has acquired a sharper edge in recent years thanks to
the influx of petro dollars, the ISI penetration and the general misuse of
madrasas to foment anti-national sentiments, our secularists should pause and
ponder the folly of their deeds.
They have inflicted untold damage
by wittingly or unwittingly providing succour to those who mastermind heinous
crimes like the burning of innocent women, children and men in the Sabarmati
Express. They need not have died merely because they were 'kar sevaks.'