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Do we need to learn tolerance and be more responsible as part of a civic society?
Anuj Verma12/14/2019 10:32:54 PM
India's is one of the most old civic societies in the world, with its glory of golden era behind and a stigma of two hundred years of British slavery. The partition of India, on basis of religion, was one of the darkest phases in our history which saw a naked dance of death and crores of people left hapless without single penny, on both sides. India was rebuilt like Japan, the country totally ravaged during World War IInd, in the same decade.
India rose back as a strong nation, alongwith it's fast growing population. But, as compared to Japan and Japanese people we have not evolved enough to speed up with their high pace of growth and nation building character.
Our minds, still, are stuck up in finding ways & means to avoid taxes; corruption spread over in every aspect of our life whether in business, in government service, in religious, educational & health institutions; land grabbing; forests cuttings, degrading quality of air by burning of stubble & by high polluting industries, brick kilns, diesal and thermal power plants, poisoning of soil & water by unscheduled sprays of toxic chemical fertilizers, pesticides, insecticides in agricultural fields, failure in rain water harvesting; menace of food & milk adulteration; unethical power struggles; spreading violance, anarchy to meet vested interests; an evil outdated web of ethnicity; religion; casteism & demanding reservations and subsidies as a matter of right and so on. No doubt, the list is very long. The governments too have pretty good pressures on their shoulders. On one hand, the pressure caused by population explosion; corruption as an inseparable part of our system; a big force of para millitary personnel required to meet law & order challanges thrown by terrorists, arsonists, religious anarchists; challenges to protect borders & handle regular border skirmishes & disputes; pressure to generate & manage resources to meet infrastructural demands; to feed & run upliftment programs for a big chunk of population under Below Poverty Line & Economically Weaker Section; pressure to maintain good economy & GDP ratio; meeting WTO and environment challenges ...............!
An average Indian is peaceful, God-fearing and law abiding citizen, but a small but powerful section of not all but few businessmen turned politicians, Godmen, preachers, mafia, land grabbers try overpowering minds of a big chunk of population to achieve their personal goals and have a control over this chunk of population by playing with their emotions, sentiments, regional and religious faith. They also exploit and try to control raw minds of unemployed & poor youth and lure them to indulge in unlawful activities. These unemployed youth are an easy source of fodder for cannons of arsonists & anarchists. During last two three decades, we have been witness to a number of violent resistance, terrorism, unrest caused due to regional, religion ethnicity & conservatism overpowering minds of a chunk of population; Anti national and anti social elements mixing up with the local population to fullfill their greed for money & power.
No doubt, the Indian police was able to finish up infamous Dacait gangs operating in rural & semi rural areas till eighties, but, it seems the present days dacaits have changed their modus- operandi and now they have become part of our urban society and do crimes in calculated & lorganized ways, involving more people in their crimes, even without their knowledge, overpowering their minds with regional, religious & ethnic sentiments. 1984 killings of innocent people, burning of pilgrims in Godhra train Coach, it's aftermath riots in Gujarat are the deep wounds given by anarchists. But, still the Indian Composite & Secular culture is intact and the country moved on the path of peace, growth & development.
Equally disturbing were a series of violent protests in Jat reservation agitation, during February 2016, by Jat people of North India, especially those in the state of Haryana, which "paralysed the State for 10 days." On February 18, outside the district court in Rohtak, a group of traders clashed with a group of lawyers and nearly 30 lives were lost in this episode. From this point, it became a jat versus non-jat clash and the violence spiralled out of control, paralysing Haryana for days. The state issued shoot at sight orders and Section 144 was imposed, but these measures had barely any impact. Few eyewitness described the violence as worse than what they had witnessed during Partition riots. The state suffered a loss of Rs 20,000 crore owing to burning and destroying of public and private property during the violence. The murkier part of the movement, as reported, on the night of 22-23 February 2016, was that 10 women were pulled out from cars, stripped and raped by the goons in Murthal. But, no rape victims came forward to lodge complaint and the case could not be proved despite of investigation by a SIT headed by an Inspector General of Police.
In Kashmir valley, too, we witnessed a strange phenomenon starting year 2008, when during daytime, para millitary forces and passer byes were subjected to heavy stone pelting by those coming out of Mosques after the Namaz prayers. This pelting of stones was more intensive on Fridays. Then, during nights, there used to be loudspeaker announcements from mosques asking all non Kashmiris & non muslims to leave the Kashmir valley. Similar situation was witnessed during 1989, 1990 when the Kashmiri Hindu population was forced to migrate from Kashmir valley, leaving behind all their properties behind. That time also, announcements were used to be made from mosques and the Hindu females were subjected to inhuman tortures & sexual assaults. Today also, a non muslim cannot think about buying an immovable property in Kashmir valley. I think this is one of the most glaring example of intolerance and inhuman face of our society. Indian is a composite society with equal rights & opportunities for all citizens secured by its constitution. All fears about losing ethnicity or indigenous identity, in a state or a region, are promoted and precipitated by few vested interests who have illegal and inhuman fears of loosing control over people living in that state or region. On one side, we talk about globalisation and softening borders with neighbouring countries and on the other hand, we are hesitant to accommodate fellow Indians in our lands & our culture. People are misguided and misled by those claiming to be their leaders to meet their lust for money & power.
We, again, witnessed a mele of violence, loot & arson by followers of a self styled Godman Ram Rahim, when their Godman was arrested by the security forces to be put behind bars after the court decision on rape charges. Citizens of Panchkula, Sirsa alongwith few other parts of Punjab, Haryana & Delhi and were put on ransom by the roitors for a whole day. There were reports of around forty deaths and three hundred injured persons.
It's only during last three four years back, when incidents of mob lynching started taking place in few parts of the country. To stop occuring of such incidents was a great challenge for the government agencies and fortunately the government has been successful to stop such incidents. But, it is the common citizen of India, who has not only to raise voice against mob lynching but also be vigilant enough to stop occuring of such incidents in nearby localities.
The more serious challenge before our society has been increasing number of cases of rapes and murders of females. In the present era of modernization and Information Technology, when females are being empowered & they need to remain outside their houses even during late hours; happening of such incidents really caste a shadow of shame and disgrace to our society. The government is promulgating strict laws, but the same are not proving to be much effective to stop recurrence of rape & murder cases of females. As citizens of this country, this becomes our utmost duty to be more vigilful against any such incidents in our close vicinity and extend an immediate help to females in distress by informing the local police authorities. Also, we need to launch large scale awareness campaign against such crimes to educate our male as well as female school & college going students. The Police should increase its presence and to ensure regular patrolling in all areas, especially during nights.
North Eastern States as well states like Jharkhand, Madhyapradesh, Bihar also, have a dark past of unrest, violence, killings caused by Mao/ Naxal terrorists. Very recently, when there were discussions going on over Citizens Amendment Bill in Indian Parliament, reports starting coming of loot & arson by those opposing the bill. Is this a right way to oppose a bill being discussed in the Parliament. Aren't there better & peaceful ways available? We all shall enjoy a holiday on 2nd October and may take pledge to follow footsteps of Mahatma Gandhi, Vallabh Bhai Patel and other Indian legendary leaders, but very next moment shall forget their sacrifices in building this nation. Intolerance, whether that is Political, Religious, Ethnic, Cultural or Regional, is very dangerous for growth, development and evolution of a society. Equally dangerous is intrusion of people with criminal records in our law making institutions. This is quite disturbing and a dark part of our society that a candidate with criminal records, usually, is considered to be a better bet than one with a clean record to win an election. Criminals, in many cases, are preferred by parties, for their nefarious attributes. And, when the law breaker becomes law maker or vice versa; both conditions are dangerous for the society.
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