Thursday, November 24, 2005

Fear And Loathing In India

The Indian blogopshere has been outraged by the murder of a young IOC official -- an IIM MBA -- brutally killed for doing his job with probity.

Needless to say, one feels anguish for his family left behind.

It's important to note here that he is hardly an exception. India has fallen into a criminal abyss where most people are afraid of criminals and, even worse, of the police. Corruption, assault, kidnapping, rape, murder, and even genocide are just as valid descriptors of India as its much-acclaimed economic, scientific, and military progress.

The murder of an IIM graduate appears shocking -- because he is kinda' like all of us Anglophone Indians, assumed safe in our ivory cocoons -- but in real fact, it's just one more data point in the loathsome deluge of criminality in our nation.

If we are to mourn, lets mourn the unknown Indian who lives a terrified life in the criminal Indian ether, then frequently loses it over astonishingly minor reasons in horrifyingly painful ways, and few even notice.

6 comments:

Jaffna said...

Primary Red

I agree with you that the issues of corruption, assault, kidnapping, rape and murder have not been adequately addressed in modern India. This points to the failure of the judicial system and the police administration, not to mention the politics of the country.

This said, I do not think that "genocide" can be included in this list. Independent India has never experienced genocide. The Indian media trivializes the use of the word genocide not understanding what it really means.

It solely means the extermination of an ethnic, national or religious group that runs into the hundreds of thousands. There is an issue of scale here. Examples include the extermination of 6 million Jews in World War 2, the extermination of 1.5 million Armenians in Turkey, the murder of 1.5 million Cambodians under the Marxist Pol Pot between 1975 and 1977, the murder of 1,000,000 Black Sudanese by the regime in Khartoum in the 1960s, the extermination of 800,000 Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994, and perhaps the murder of 100,000 Tibetans in Maoist China. I would argue the murder of 1.5 million Bengalees in East Pakistan in 1971 either comes under the definition of genocide or war crimes. I have given conservative numbers only.

Best regards

Jaffna said...

Primary Red

Oops, forgot to mention Indonesia's murder of half of the population of East Timor in 1974. That's genocide too.

doubtinggaurav said...

PR,

My thought too.

Jaffna,

On the contrary there were genocides and exiles

In Kashmir

In North - East

But since it was Hindus so I guess it doesnt fit in Moral equivalence/Victimhood that secularism requires

Regards

Jaffna said...

Gaurav

Let me disagree once again since the word "genocide" should be used with caution only in those instances that it really applies.

Kashmir perhaps witnessed the eviction of 300,000 Hindus from the valley in 1989. The numbers are uncertain. But the death toll between 1989 and today is low by international or South Asian standards, Pakistani propaganda to the contrary.

Turning to Gujarat, according to the Congress Government Minister of State for Home Affairs in his statement to the Rajya Sabha in May this year, 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed in the 2002 post-Godhra riots. Here's the link to the Indian Express article.

http://www.expressindia.com/fullstory.php?newsid=46538

A quick correction on an earlier point that I made. The Indonesian military killed 200,000 East Timorese in 1974. The total population of East Timor was then 600,000. Now, that's genocide.

Regards

doubtinggaurav said...

Jaffna,

You are right ofcourse,
What happened in Kashmir was not genocide.
I was using it in fake but accuarte ™ sense
(Hell Secularists use it in a much more inaccurate way)
My apologies.

Regards

reformist_muslim said...

The point on mourning the 'unknown Indian' was an excellent one which has sort of become lost in the debate on genocide.

It's a really interesting example of how we percieve tragedy. Of the top of my head, the situation in the U.K last year where it took the case of white Zimbabwean asylum seekers to draw wider attention to the fact that asylum is often a life or death issue and that there is a duty to behave humanely towards those who seek it.

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