Monday, 13 January 2014

Muzaffarnagar......paradise lost !!

Since antiquity, India has been home to a number of people from diverse religious and cultural backdrops. Ethnic to India, Hindus were the first to imprint on this peninsula. Subsequently....the lust for rare commodities brought hundreds of traders across the globe....towards India. They established a highly detailed trading system in India, and also augmented their personal relation towards India. In totality, they settled in India. It has always been strange to see a homogenous mixture as calm and un-arousing, while a heterogeneous mixture boils with the pulse of intolerance. The same can be said about Indian society too. We boast of a secular polity, unmatched in the global stage....but the pulsating pressure, and horrendous pot holes have set us back many a times. Only we know of the hundreds of religious affrays and 'differences of opinions' for which people pay with their dear lives. Under the kind of tolerance policy that the government has adopted, and the candied diplomacy that the religious groups have is only assumable that a certain animosity is unavoidable. This is the case for India as well. We have masked our religious rifts and differences with a few constitutional statements and political claims. The truth is, that India is a country, whose ethnic proportions and past has always haunted mammoth physical scales. While rummaging through the pages of Indian history....we find hundreds of riots between religious communities....resulting in mass killings and destruction of property. The latest incident of this sort, was captured in a small district in the volatile state of Uttar Pradesh- Muzaffarnagar. What happened in Muzaffarnagar was not just unfortunate....but also un-acceptable in the contemporary world.

The ravaging impact of this riot is nullified by a comical trigger that started this entire rift. There have been two theses as to how the rioting started. There is one, that says that it was revolving an issue of eve-teasing against a Hindu girl. This notched a vengeance initiative against the Muslim youth who is alleged to have teased the girl.  Her two relatives Sachin Singh and Gaurav Singh, confronted the youth and killed him amidst a tussle. The aftermath is only assumable. The second version says that there was an altercation between Sachin and Gauruv, and the Muslim youth in question during a traffic commotion. This seems an outright hysterical reason to wage a social war. But this is the reality. Following this killing....a minor Muslim mob snatched the two Hindu youngsters and murdered them. The Jat Hindu community opined that the police had not taken any action against the mob that lynched the two Hindu youth. This event was more than enough to synchronise a mass massacre in which both the religious fraternities lost many people. As both the religious sided cried political vendetta....the matter got even worse. Then came, the jolly canal incident, where hundreds of Jat Hindus were massacred and then, literally deposited in the adjacent canal, called Jolly. Whatever the cause may have been, no matter how many salvos of immorality may have condensed.....the revolting fact, is that in 21st century India....religious rifts are widening and straining. The government was reduced to being a sentry locked out of his compound, as the immature administrative capacities of Akhilesh Yadav became more and more visible. The army and the CRPF forces were called in to douse the fire....but the damage was already done. As hundreds suffered losses amounting to more than just material ones, the government stood aloof.

The politicians of Uttar Pradesh did not help the cause, as politicians across party lines fuelled this communal fire with their outrageous and provoking comments. The social media and mass media was misused to a large extent as politicians blurted out unwanted and provocative statements that tainted the banner of secularism in India. Charges were registered against these MLAs who went out of their way in doing what they did. BJP MLA Sangeet Som stretched the rope as far to upload a FAKE video showing a young Hindu boy being brutally beaten by a muslim mob. This, at a time when BJP is trying to paint a secular wall. All the political parties which have their genes in the state of UP, demanded that the Samajwadi Party government be disbanded and that president's rule be imposed in the state. Disregarding such implausible demands.....the riots cooled down and the army bailed the state of it's terror, and balance was gradually restored. But this was only the mid-point of the journey, as the most horrendous of scenes were yet to witnessed. The riot victims receded to the state-supported relief camps, as squalor and discomfort set in involuntarily. The cold conditions in the camps, coupled with low quality bedding materials and 'nutrition lacking any nutrition'. All this further took a toll on the death rate as many innocent infants succumbed to cold. Even here, we were forced to lend our ears to the third-rate comments of the administrators and leaders.

Putting salt on the wounds.....the top brass of the SP loitered around & drank and ate to their fullest at the Saifai fest in Akhilesh's home village. Mulayam Singh and Akhilesh Yadav enjoyed the performances by an array of stars from Mumbai, as hundred suffered from the extreme cold and hatred meted out to them in the riot-camps.

Maybe, the riots were uncontrollable....maybe the outcome was unanticipated.....maybe the measures were inadequate.....but the fact is that a bit of humility would have been appreciated. We are not asking the SP leaders to go  live in the camps...but why has Mulayam Singh visited the camp not even once? We seek a lot of a few ambiguous questions.


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