June 17, 2008

Cinema bombers

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.

    I hope.
  • 9 comments:

    OhCoffee! said...

    Hello Typist,

    I am glad you found something to gloat about after a long while. The post-Nandigram days have been particularly miserable I guess.

    You moved with lightening speed, I should say with grudging admiration. I came to know of the arrest of these terrorists thru your blog. You seem to have wasted not a minute in gathering your Thoughts to Ponder within the shortest time possible after you came to know of it. Kudos. And I am glad that you did not ponder whether the terrorists had grievances. I am glad you made enough progress in the direction of rational thinking to realize that no person who intends to achieve his objective by killing random, innocent people can have a legitimate grievance, and that such people need to be crushed ruthlessly. Therefore, let me add a fifth thought.


    The Typist's Fifth Thought Triggered By the Arrest Of The Bombay Bombers (Suggested by OhCoffee. Approved -- so it is hoped -- by centrist Jai Chorakkoot):

    #####

    * I hope those who justify terrorism with their poisonous talk about "grievances of terrorists" -- cleverly projecting such talk as 'explanation' not 'justification' -- will have reason to pause. All terrorists and their defenders -- whether Hindu, or Muslim or Catholic or Communist or Typist -- cite excuses to kill innocent people.

    #####

    What say, my friend?

    OhDarjeelingTee! said...

    OhCoffee,

    You are wrong. Those Hindu Terrorists did have grievances. I am afraid that unless those grievances are addressed, we may see more terrorism, and more innocent Muslims killed. Yes, we must punish these terrorists, but that will not solve the problem. As long as their grievances are not addressed, Hindu terrorists will always find recruits. Perhaps a beginning can be made by resettling Kashmiri Hindus in the valley, and spending billions of dollars if needed by protecting them and their properties. Ram Janmabhoomi is another issue. A solution must be found, te problem should not be allowed to drag on forever. Surely an environment that allows crores of illegal Bangladeshis to rob jobs of poor Indians only because the former are Muslim will foster hatreds and terrorism? We need to summon up the courage to think about these issues.

    I hope these terrorists are punished. Let there be no mistake about it. I am only explaining what can lead to more and more Hindu terrorism targetted at innocent people. Not justifying it in anyway. Terrorists must be punished and human rights must be protected. I am opposed to TADA and POTA to be used against these terrorists.

    Thomas Kuruvilla said...

    I am a middle-of-the-roader. I am neither Leftist nor Rightist. Like Mr D'Souza, I lean more towards on the side of the Typist. I am not a left-hander, but that does not make me a neoliberal.

    OhDarjeelingTea made interesting observations. Are those who explain terrorist motivations necessarily justifying terrorist killings? I think such a line of thought is dangerous and will stifle freedom of speech. We should not shy away from considering -- if not accepting -- the point of view that the injustices that Hindus are suffering are a source of Hindu terrorism. That said, I am not completely in agreement with OhDarjeelingTea on the point of POTA. Since Hindu Terrorism is breaking out in a big way, this is perhaps the right time to bring POTA back, maybe in a diluted form.

    Thank you.

    Thomas

    Marcus Borewella said...

    Oh shut up, Kuruvilla. Your logic is all screwed up. Just because Muslim Terrorists have grievances does not mean Hindu terrorists also have them too. Just because Marquis De Sade tortured people for pleasure does not mean that Shobha De also tortured for pleasure, ok?

    deshdrohi said...

    ohcoffee,
    the shortest possible time? lightening speed? this news was all over indian television more than 24 hours ago and then in the newspapers this morning. so if this site is the first you heard of these arrests, it's obvious that you, like so many other pseudo-nationalists, don't actually live in the land you claim to love so much. your hypocrisy is now revealed.
    deshdrohi

    Trainman said...

    So, how many times have you watched "The Shawshank Redemption"? :-)

    Sidhusaaheb said...

    Muslim terrorists, Hindu terrorists, Sikh terrorists, Christian terrorists (coming soon, perhaps)...Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Isaai...waah waah

    Every one can have a good time now, telling whoever is willing to listen about how 'their' brand of terrorism is justified and based on 'genuine grievances', whilst others' are not.

    :D

    Suresh said...

    Good one,

    Hindu terrorists definitely are motivated by their leaders in todays India. Sombody commented there is rise in hindu fundamentalism because of muslims behaviour in India. I would like to say that hindu fundamentalism started when aryans started plundering this country with their culture and religion,destroying indigenous cultures of India.

    SK

    Jai_Choorakkot said...

    Now that the trolls have hopefully moved on, hope we may get to do some serious comments.

    1. The denunciation thing is strong and globally at that. Here's Roger Cohen at the tail-end of a moderate piece urging Obama to visit a mosque:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/26/opinion/26cohen.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

    "...Obama has a unique power to break the cycle, not least by ****emboldening moderate Muslims to denounce terror****. Nothing would do more in the long run for the security of the world."

    2. It had struck me in conversations IRL with Hindutva leaning and neutral type friends:

    a) the ones that spontaneously condemned, unasked, the Guj riots had one kind of thinking.

    b) the ones that maintained an uncomfortable silence had a very different idea. They knew their thoughts would be very PI. When emboldened they came out with explanation leading to justification leading to worse*.


    c) demanded "humanity certifying" or "patriotism certifying" declarations are not just stupid, they are abhorrent. The implicit inequality in assuming the humanity/ patriotism status of the demander also bothers me.

    d) With the frequency of terror incidents we get jaded and wont react too strongly anymore to the Nth one as to the 1st.

    3. I'd like to know who thinks IMs dont condemn terrorism. This is a regular feature on IndianMuslims blog. If anything the recurrence of terror activities illustrates the low and diminishing value of such condemnation to perpetrators.

    regards,
    Jai
    * is the background based on which, Dilip, Ive had some to-do with you on explain/ justify