The Bold Voice of J&K

Problem of terrorism

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Ram Rattan Sharma

Terrorism has been practiced throughout history and throughout the world. In democratic countries, the people can express their views without any fear, if the genuine grievances are not looked into the people have either democratic and non violent means available to them to focus attention of the government in recent years some people have started resorted to terrorism to press their demands, often it is the innocent and the helpless who becomes it’s victim. Political frustration, religious and racial fanaticism and economic backwardness are the main causes of terrorism. External powers encourages terrorism in order to create instability in certain regions. Terrorists are extremists who believe in the cult of violence and who want to coerce governments into agreements on certain issues, they indulge in hijacking kidnapping, shooting, arson etc. Terrorism has become endemic in India since early 1980’s. It has been nurtured and planted by external agencies, especially Pakistan in the sensitive states of Kashmir and Punjab where the concept of regional autonomy has been exploited by Pakistan. The north eastern states with its out fits are also indulging in kidnapping and other terrorists activities. It is the March 12, 1993 serial bombing of Bombay which has really introduced the face of international terrorism to India.
Increasingly, in the last decade or so, violence has pervaded Indian politics. It has found various forms-from shrill and abusive language and character assassination of opponents to casteist and communal violence and from booth capturing to physical attacks on the oppressed, who try to raise themselves and actualize the promises of equality and equal opportunity embodied in our constitution. But above all, violence has taken the form of organized and large scale terrorism. Terrorism has become endemic in India since early 1980’s. We have not been able to check it or contain it. What is worse, we have failed to make it politically illegitimate. When a major assassination occurs we use words such as brutal, barbaric and heinous to describe the act, but in more normal times, we treat it as if it is business as usual. Un our approach to terrorism, we fail to distinguish it from the use of violence or armed struggle in a revolutionary situation. There is vast difference between violence in a democratic society where venues of peaceful protest as also pol. Change through electoral processes exists and an authoritarian dictatorial society where the people have no choice but to over throw the political regime through use of weapons. But even in the latter society violence takes the form of massupsurge or armed struggle based on massive political support and mobilization.
Terrorism at a serious and dangerous level arises in a democratic society when an organized group is convinced of its own pol. Righteousness and yet finds itself unable to acquire political power democratically, because it is unable to persuade the majority to back it either in terms of massmobilization or ultimately in terms of electoral support. The fact is that terrorism, of every type must be stamped out at its origin and stopped in its tracks. Ifr it continues to exist, not to speak succeeding at one place, it is bound to spread to other places, who so ever finds it impossible to achieve his/her objective through normal democratic/peaceful process will take recourse to it. Terrorism will go on claiming victims. But the default has not been only of the political leaders, intellectuals have been equally involved by and large and with some exceptions, most of the intellectuals especially those with access to the media have consistently refused to recognize the seriousness of the problem posed by violence and terrorism. The youth in some states are unemployed and feeling deprived and the answer must be found in solving their basic socio-economic problems.
The dis-regard for reality and refusal to face up to the challenge of terrorism have been there, regarding the LTTE in Tamil Nadu and the ULFA in assam which are declared to be ethnic problems, similarly there is complete silence and sometimes even support for the activities of the peoples war group in Andhra, because it is supposed to be fighting for revolution and has taken up the cause of the tribal people. Most of the civil liberty groups have revealed complete bank rupcy by keeping quiet PWG’s activities even when the cadre and leaders of CPI, CPI-M and the Congress have been kidnapped, maimed, and mutilated and killed in Andhra and the neighbouring areas. Those who capture booths are condemned but those who use violence to prevent people from voting are quietly ignored if not praised, using drug money to finance terrorist activity is also becoming a problem in India.
Mutual cooperation among terrorist movements as in Punjab and Kashmir and in north eastem states is also a matter of grave concern. The March 12th, 1993 serial bombing in Bombay have added another complex mosaic to terrorism in India, the growing collaboration between various terrorist movements in different parts of the world with crime syndicates operating within country.
(The author is former Dy. Librarian University of Jammu)

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