Friday, April 24, 2009

Where is the secularism??

We all know that Seyed Salahuddin, the supreme leader of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, the largest Kashmiri militant group and the militant wing of Jamat-e-Islaami, has the blessings of ISI and many sympathizers in Pakistan. ISI has grown out to be a Frankenstein, often out of control of the politicians in Pakistan.  India has learnt to accept the role of ISI in many Pakistan sponsored acts of the terrorism. But India does expect that the political class would be sensitive to India’s sentiments and attitude towards such acts of terrorism. Though lethargically, but still Pakistan did start taking actions against people allegedly involved in planning the 26/11 Bombay terror attack in November 2008. How did we all feel when Imran Khan went on record saying that Jamat-e-Islaami is not a terrorist organization but an organization involved in social service? It’s really appreciable that other than him, we didn’t hear any other prominent political leader in Pakistan defending Hizb-ul-Mujahdideen or its leaders at that point of time though we expected more cooperation from them.  We are quite vocal against Pakistan’s providing a safe haven to many of the international terrorists. We all know that people there are sympathetic to these terrorists and that itself is a major concern to us.

Now let’s change positions. Let’s replace Hizbul with LTTE, Seyed Salahuddin with Prabhakaran, Pakistan with India and India with Sri Lanka. What do we see? We see that a major ally of the ruling UPA going on record saying that Prabhakaran is his personal friend and not a terrorist. The same leader also wrote a poem in praise of a slain LTTE commander last year.  It’s a matter of speculation how exactly this leader would react if some day Sri Lanka captures Prabhakaran, alive or dead.  Just for the information of everyone LTTE is also an internationally banned terrorist organization and the only one with army, naval and air wings and Prabhakaran is acknowledged as a dreaded terrorist internationally. Now doesn’t this whole incident put India and Pakistan in the same stand with regards to attitude towards terrorism?

In Pakistan the sympathy is for terrorists fighting for Muslims and in India the sympathy is for the terrorists fighting for Tamils, both in foreign lands. Karunanidhi’s interview in NDTV in praise of Prabhakaran has been aired so many number of times. Doesn’t this fall into the category of provocative speech?

The response of Congress was just that these are his personal views and not that of Congress. But strangely did we see any official action being initiated against Karunanidhi? Neither did we see Congress alienating them from Karunanidhi. If that’s the case then why do they expect BJP to alienate from Varun Gandhi, who also did a similar crime of making a provocative speech? When we all condemn Varun Gandhi’s speech and we expect that he won’t indulge into similar things in future, we should also take similar offence against Karunanidhi’s open support in favour of a terrorist organization and its leader who is no lesser a criminal than any of his counterparts in Pakistan.

Where is the secularism when Varun is put into jail for his speech and Karunanidhi is going free?

Where is the secularism when Lalu Prasad wants to crush Varun Gandhi under a road roller and there’s absolutely no response from any of the UPA allies, nor Congress, for the other provocative speech?

Anyone who came in support of the people allegedly involved in the Malegaon blast was branded communal. Yes, we do appreciate that and are in favour of alienating ourselves from anyone who is allegedly involved in any form of terrorism (even though it’s not correct to brand someone a criminal till the final court verdict is out). But then why the response or attitude towards Karunanidhi would be different?

The idea of secularism gets a severe beating whenever there’s such a blatant act of hypocrisy. Secularism stands on the idea of same reaction, response and attitude towards all sects and communities. I just don’t understand what secularism all these self claimed secular non-BJP parties speak of. I just heard Mr. Sharad Pawar saying that he is ready to team with anyone who doesn’t side with BJP. I hear similar things from Prakash Karat, Lalu Prasad and many others. All of these people vouch by secularism and brand BJP as the harbinger of communal riots and non-secularism. They want to give an impression to all that they are fighting to ensure that we have a secular-India. But then where is the secularism in their action? What secularism do they speak? Had Prabhakaran been a Hindu terrorist in Pakistan or Bangladesh fighting for the liberation of Hindus there, could we see the similar sympathy for him? Why don’t then we treat all the Naxalites as our friends and try to defend them. After all they are also fighting for social justice? Any act of terrorism starts from some sort of social injustice.  But that doesn’t give any sort of legitimacy to the heinous acts of terrorism.

 A secular country should be always dead against any form of terrorism irrespective of the motive or the group of people it’s associated with. The security of the country is not a matter of negotiation and under no circumstance should be compromised. This case of going easy on Karunanidhi is again another instance of appeasement politics – the very thing that’s killing our country!!

By the way, have you ever thought from this angle that any regional party is, by its very own existence, a communal one? In dictionary, being communal means to be associated with any particular commune or community. Like, any Bengali Association in any part of India outside West Bengal is communal. Any Indian Association outside India is a communal. A part which derives its existence from any particular community like Dravidians or Dalits can be branded as communal. Even a party that propagates communism is also a communal one very much like Muslim League. When Mayawati speaks more of the Dalit she is being communal. When Prakash Karat speaks of Marxism as the only solution he is being communal. When Karunanidhi speaks only for the Tamil people he is being communal.  As a matter of fact almost all parties in India are communal by construction. Any regional party ought to be communal in nature. Only the national parties like BJP or Congress are not communal at least by construction.  So I’d like to stress on the point that we should make sure that our country is ruled by a national party because only that can give us the secularism that we all aspire of.

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