Saturday, November 8, 2008

Assam shows the way

After the recent bomb blasts in Assam - the worst ever in the North Eastern state - the people of Guwahati did something that their counterparts in other parts of India did not: they went on an absolute rampage, demanding an explanation from the Government. They questioned the legitimacy of the Government: after all, with hundreds of deaths and dozens of bombings across India over the past few months alone, how could the Government continue?

It's not that I support violence: there are better ways of expressing dissatisfaction. But the absolute defeat of the Government at the hands of jihadists has left citizens exasperated. India is not safe: every time we step out for a walk, we wonder if we will come back alive. People have died around us, threatening e-mails are being sent like spam and frisking in every public location has become a way of life. Is this how we are supposed to live?

The mob at Guwahati was controlled by the police, but when all of India gangs up, what are the politicians going to do? Blame Bangladesh and Pakistan? Look for communal overtones to distract people from the point?

You can fool all the people sometimes. You can fool some people all the time. But you can't fool all the people all the time. And in 2009, India will give its verdict.

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