August 27, 2008

Politics ... thy name is Contradiction

August 27, 2008 Posted by Vijay , No comments
Watching the headlines these days, makes it sickening for viewers. The past week has been even more so, with horror stricken stories. It was funny how the news channels were prioritising the news stories. While one channel had debates running on the communal tension and violence in Orissa, another was covering the flood hit areas of Bihar. Another channel was busy broadcasting the protests and curfews in Jammu & Kashmir over the Amarnath land dispute. Of course, all these news items were subsequently covered by each of them. Not to mention the Singur land dispute which is making headlines everyday.

Up until last week, there was joy and jubilation with the Olympic heroes from India. All of a sudden, there is more of gloom and worry all around in India. A sense of insecurity which swept the nation with serial blasts seems to have gained momentum with acts of communal violence in Orissa, siege of the TATA plant in Singur, gun firing in Jammu Kashmir. Even nature seems to be against the nation today with floods lashing in Bihar.

What is more appalling is the level of contradiction in each of these major incidents. Demands of Azaadi in Kashmir came to the forefront with large masses of separatists leading the cause. What Azaadi meant in this context is unclear, atleas to me ! Azaadi to carry out trade across the LOC ? Azaadi from India ? Azaadi from militants ? Contradiction can't be more in the face, when those seeking Azaadi, have to be shielded by the same country who have been protecting them for the past 60 years. When militants open fire and hold them hostage, there doesn't seem to be demand for Azaadi.

As has been the case today, terrorists infiltrated across the LOC and have still held civilians hostage. Yesterday, Sajjad Lone made a point when he was asked by a TV anchor about the lives lost by the Indian Army men in protecting and shielding them. His counter argument was the lives lost by Kashmiris because of the recent firing over the economic blockade and Amarnath land transfer. So, as far as the separatists go, if they are killed by militants, it is an everyday affair. While if they are killed by firing at protesters who turn violent, it is a grave affair which demands justice and is the reason for Azaadi. Quite ridiculous and shocking, that Indian Army has to now go and shield them from terrorists to protect them !

Another case of contradiction is the Singur land controversy. Poor old Left Government there, is getting a real dose of it's own medicine. Mamata is teaching what Left had been doing with the Central Government, fighting for the rights of the people and farmers in Singur. Incredibly, the West Bengal (WB) Government, is having to stick to its decision in order to send out the right message that WB is indeed a good state to invest in. It is a different matter, that they will hold nationwide bandhs, if the fuel prices are raised eventhough LPG prices after the hike is still Rs. 350 subsidised. Left will continue to strike even if they know that fuel subsidies will dry out fuel from India sooner than later. I wonder, in that case where they will get the fuel for vehicles to send hoards of their supporters to disrupt normal life.

Politics as they say, has no friends or foes. So, it does mean, those who stick to their word, are non-existent in politics. What is most saddening in all this, is the Kashmir crisis which is disheartening for the entire nation today. When India has been fighting on, and the world knows Pakistan's hand in infiltration bids and bombings, the separatists of Kashmir seek independence. Rather than showing a united stand and working with the Indian Government, they seem to be more inclined towards working with Pakistan. Isn't the infiltration at LOC proof enough of the reason why New Delhi is against trading across LOC ? This is no rocket science to understand. My heart goes out to India and all it's citizens who have loved Kashmir and wish it very well, everyday through out the year. I hope common sense prevails, and Kashmir remains peaceful and an integral part of India. I can't imagine how Kashmir will be peaceful with a country like Pakistan which is not able to keep its own people under control.