Just like a majority of you, I am also an ordinary citizen of this great nation. I watched the terror that unfolded on this nation and I watched with even more interest, the uproar of the citizens of this country. I can swear with a certain amount of confidence that our country will remain the same even if the uproar of the citizens this time has been a bit more serious than what we witnessed ever since the 1992 terror attacks. Some heads will roll and have rolled, but believe me, we will still have the Amar Singh, Advani, Mulayam, Laloo, Mamata Banerjee, Jayalalitha, Karat, Yechuri, and the Thakerey’s besides the highly qualified clean ones like Manmohan Singh in our political system until the day they can breathe.
On 26th November 2008, a great Nation with a glorious history, unparalleled anywhere else in the world was held hostage by 10 young men for almost 3 days. Anyone who knew India’s glorious history or someone who experienced the 12-minute fascinating boat-ride depicting 10,000 years of India's glorious heritage at ‘Sanskruti Vihar’ of the Akshardham in Delhi will hang their head in shame and ask where did the glory disappear? India had the world’s first university, advanced knowledge on nuclear science, medicine, aviation, minerals and what not, but today it is just the second most populous nation in the world and besides that we do not have anything to our credit.
Indian: the argumentative Indian....no...The finger pointing Indian!!!
We have always been experts in pointing our fingers at others, but seldom did we stand up and take responsibility. Do we have a right to be angry when we have failed ourselves? The varna system of the rigveda based on the ability of a person to do a particular vocation degraded itself through our ancestors for thousands of years, the Britisher’s took advantage of this to further their hold on this great Nation and what is most painful is that we allowed our politicians to continuously divide our great nation on the lines of religion and castes for the last 60 years of Independent India and thanks to it we still have riots, bombings, murders and rapes happening in this great country in the name of Religion and Caste. ‘Yatha Raja Thatha Praja’ does not hold truth in a democracy and it gets reversed in a democracy to read ‘Yatha Praja Thatha Raja’. In short, we get people as able as us, to lead this country. We chose our leaders and nobody can deny this fact with whatever reasoning. Everybody knows in the heart of hearts that their insecurities based on religion and caste shadow their choice when they cast their ballot. How can we blame the politician who merely takes advantage of that weakness in each one of us? The 26/11 attacks would have passed just as another terrorist attack but for the place and the people targeted in this attack. This time the terrorist hit at the ‘Page 3’ media savvy population and the rage will continue until such time our media will continue to milk the TRP rating with the help of this ‘Page 3’ population. As usual, we have failed miserably to take RESPONSIBLITY for our actions and as long as we fail to take responsibility, we will be weak and prone not just to terror attacks, but also to floods, unacceptable pollution levels, corruption, lack of food security etc and we will continue to be a weak nation. How many of us noticed that our anger didn’t change anything. Was the Home Minister alone responsible? He was, but he was certainly not the only one. It was the Navy and the Coast Guard that were caught napping and not the intelligence, but our Defence Minister is still the Defence Minister? Doesn’t he have any moral responsibility like the other Ministers that have resigned? We failed to understand that the moral responsibility, in this country is decided by the Congress Working Committee. We failed to note that the defence minister and the external affairs minister were busy in Mumbai balancing the caste ratio to decide the next chief minister when they should have been doing some more important business. Look at one of the most revered Indian today, Mr.Ratan Tata who in a press conference stated that ‘ironically Taj had the warning of a terrorist strike, but nothing could have been done to prevent it, because the measures that would have been in place would still have not been sufficient’. I admit that it may have not been sufficient, but it would have been sufficient enough of a surprise element for the terrorist to mitigate their terror if all entrance and exits were sufficiently secured. What we need to understand is that a person of his stature failed to take RESPONSIBLITY. Later the Page 3 population in media interviews were stating that they will refuse to pay bribes to the traffic policeman on the street. Look at the irony, none said that they would drive more responsibly and follow traffic rules so as not to give the traffic policeman an opportunity to harass them. The attitude of this Page 3 population still says that there is a difference between the common man and the Page 3 population of this country. For the common man there still is a difference between the Rs.200 fine and the Rs.50 bribe. As long as this difference remains, we will have corruption. In short, be it the common man like me or the Page 3 population, we have failed to take the responsibility and as long as we fail to take responsibility nothing will change in this country.
To The Protectors of the Freedom of Speech....the MEDIA
Media has been portraying itself as a saviour and the upholder of the freedom of speech and expression in this country. How many of them can keep their hands on their heart and accept the truth that it was nothing but sheer sensationalism and the race to top TRP ratings that decide the reporting methodology. The media has been in the forefront of portraying people’s angst against the politicians, but how many did a real analysis of the incident. How many of them reported responsibly? None. How many of our media persons know about what happened in 1972 Olympic Games? I don’t think even a single person knew about it and if they claim they knew about it, then, they should be tried for gross negligence. In 1972, the German snipers in Olympic sweatsuits had to abort their rescue attempt when the camera crews had reported and had broadcast live the images of the snipers and the terrorists clearly marked the position of these snipers. Did the experienced Barka or Rajdeep think about the consequences of their action? The Media behaved irresponsibly and in doing so, they actively abetted the terror being perpetrated by these terrorists.
To my Pakistani brothers and sisters
We all belonged to the same country before 1947 and therefore our habits remain the same, if not all, at least the habit of not being responsible for our acts. We know that Pakistan is also a victim of Terrorism but the only difference is that their own military is directly or indirectly supporting the Terrorists. When will the people of Pakistan say enough is enough and stand up against those people who are fanning the culture of the radicals and breed the terrorists on their soil?
This time there is a difference, a big difference. The difference is not just that a joint investigation is being carried out by India along with the US, UK and Israel or the pressure from the international community would be immense on the Pakistani Government. Pakistan knows that China will bail them out from any hard resolutions that may come up in the UN Security Council, but I am not sure if the Pakistani government has realised that this time they are in for serious trouble from an unexpected quarter. These terrorists from the Pakistani soil showed clearly their intention of targeting Israel directly. They laid siege on a building owned by the Israeli community and tortured and killed the Israeli citizens living there and demonstrated a clear intention of taking the war on to the Israeli soil. Even Al-Qaeda never dared to attack Israel so openly and directly, because all terrorist organisations know very clearly that any direct attacks on Israel is a very expensive affair. The Israeli government has already declared the attack on ‘Nariman House’ as an attack on the Israeli soil. The day their investigators report in their findings that the terrorists were elements from Pakistan, they will move to neutralise these elements. Nobody can forget the determination of the Israeli people to fight terrorism if they know something about operation ‘Wrath of God’ and ‘Spring of Youth’ that followed the 1972 Olympic massacre of the Israeli Olympians. They chased every person connected with the massacre, a chase that continued for 20 years with grit and determination and the 1992 killing of the PLO’s intelligence chief is said to have the 1972 connection. This time the terrorists or the elements in Pakistan can only hope and pray that the political situation in Israel doesn’t lead them to repeat such operations. I will not be surprised if Israeli war planes bomb specific terrorist camps inside Pakistan while the rest of the world decides on sanctions and other diplomatic measures to put pressure on Pakistan to clamp down on terrorist bases in its territory.
As an ordinary Indian, I am not looking up at the Indian government to protect me, but I put my head down in shame for the situation I am in today as I have nobody else to blame, but MYSELF. Today there is one resolution I make, much before the New Year, a resolution to be Responsible for my action.