Monday, September 8, 2008


One of our school teachers was real weird. He had a peculiar method of enforcing discipline in his classroom. Every time, a back-bencher would say or do something that would infuriate him, he would shout at the one who committed the mischief and… and strike (with his knuckles) the head of the boy sitting nearest to him.

A similar attitude is reflected in the communal carnages that occur in our country. It has happened in Delhi, Gujarat and so many other brutalities. Now it is happening in Orissa… A Swami and his four followers are killed on 23 August 2008. Immediately, communal goons unleashed horrendous violence against innocents.

The culprits are yet to be identified, but an entire community has borne the brunt of murderous slaughter and inhuman bloodshed. The death count is rising. Over 4000 homes have been razed to the ground and nearly hundred places of worship have been torched. Nuns have been raped, innocent and disabled persons have been lynched, pregnant women, toddlers, orphans and the elderly are being forced to leave their homes and languish in the safety of the jungles!

In the case of our weird teacher’s unfair reprisal, all would find it funny except the one who was unfairly penalised for somebody else’s mistakes and the others sitting in the front row who would be on the edge fearing that the odd predicament would come their way, too. The rest of us were detached because it did not affect us.

It is this detached indifference that provides bizarre logic for the indefensible. How can anyone justify the inhuman killings and brutalisation of innocents? We must ask ourselves whether we have learnt any lessons from the numerous killings, brutal attacks and rapist rioting, born of divisive religious fanaticism… if we do not speak up now against the communal fanatics, we will strengthen their hands… and we will be in their murderous reach someday.

Let’s BE BETTER at the values of empathy, justice and compassion
By ensuring that we connect to the solidarity of responsive action…

- Pravin-da

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