Ramesh Gadkari and Mangesh Nikam were arrested yesterday on charges of planting bombs in a cinema theatre and two city auditoriums. The report in the Hindustan Times today (June 17) has this headline: "Hindu radicals behind Thane theatre blast."
In the wake of this, a few thoughts.
I hope this drives home the point -- if it needs to be made at all -- that crime and terrorism are not the monopoly of the so-called followers of any particular religion. They are the monopoly of criminals and terrorists, that's all.
Responding to terror by Muslim radicals in 2005, a commenter asked here, "If India's Muslims do not condemn terrorism that is carried out in their names, how is India going to defeat it?" I hope this same commenter, or any other, is not going to similarly ask: "If India's Hindus do not condemn terrorism that is carried out in their names, how is India going to defeat it?" Because I abhor and condemn terrorism, period. Not because bomb layers and terrorists announce, "I'm setting these bombs and intending to kill people in the name of the religion you and I share." I assume that every reasonable person feels the same way.
I hope those who think nothing of pronouncing "All Muslims are not terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims" will find reason to pause.
I hope this will help us find the political will to punish terrorism wherever and whenever it happens: whether bomb blasts in Bombay or massacre in Baroda or killing in Kashmir.