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Mainstream, VOL LVII No 29 New Delhi July 6, 2019

Lynching is the Game-changer in New India

Coercion as a means of terror

Sunday 7 July 2019

by Mustafa Khan

The lynching of Tabrez Ansari was by means of threat and violence perpetrated with utter impunity for hours on end, nay, for days together. This is the darkest hour in the history of India which marks a departure of Narendra Modi from the first term as the PM since he remained silent in most of such cases instead of condemning them. It heralds the worst for the minorities. The miracle is that Tabrez survived to illustrate this fact of four days and then died. Sure sign of phenomenalism. The realities and facts of today undoubtedly point to coercion, a form of terrorism. Such is the power and efficacy of the second Reich of Modi that the remains of the cause of terror travelled to Japan within the week of his junket. Such an inveterate personality is our PM that as the CM of Gujarat he could ask the police to not come in the way of the RSS, HVP, ABVP and let Hindus vent their anger in 2002. Those who revealed the truth of it, Haren Pandya and Sanjiv Bhat, met their end at his hand. Dissent is the crying need of today if we want our democracy to thrive and not be throttled. What matters to him is that the Diaspora in 2002 was with him and now in Japan they encore him. ‘Jai Shri Ram.’‘Vande Matarum.’ The first slogan was never uttered with the same ferocity then. The second is in praise of India as a mother goddess, which Muslims refuse to utter because of idolatry. That is how the juggernaut of dividing India continues.

But what is painful is that those who lynched Tabrez coerced him to utter such slogans umpteen times, ad absurdum. When he was in jail after two days the main accused Papu Mandal went there and asked in surprise: ‘Ab tak yeh mara kyon nahin? [why did he not die till now?]’ The wife of Tabrez and his mother-in-law were also there whom the police threatened that they would break their knees if they did not go out.1 The young widow passed out at the sight of her husband.

It is strange that only the crime of theft is registered but not of attack on the victim and his death! They forced him to chant against his will. This is part of the definition of terror and then they left him as a living mummy that amounts to lynching and essentially terrorism. He died on account of the torture. The police aggravated the condition by not paying attention to his serious condition.

There are reasons to believe what a man could have done thieving hardly a month after marriage. He had a job of a welder in Pune and was visiting his village for Id festival. He was to return back to Pune soon to resume his work. This is not a “cut and paste” allegation of terror, as the Jharkhand Minister would like us to believe. It is sheer terror. It has put on notice the minorities that they are at the mercy of the majority Hindus. When Menahem Begin and his group of terrorists bombed Hotel David in Jerusalem they had put the imperialist British on notice that their days were over and Israel would be created.

Despite the gravity of the lynching in the same week Modi went to the G-20 meeting in Japan. He spoke succinctly on the global threat of terrorism on June 28. Terrorism is the greatest threat to humanity. It kills not only innocent people but also has the most disastrous effect on economic opportunity and poses a threat to social stability and to remove it, we have to close all the means that support communalism and extremism.

This is a sham statement because he and his Right-wing groups and party do not believe what he is pontificating there. What is rampant in India is precisely due to him: communalism and extremism. Tabrez’s lynching is the living proof of it. If it cannot change the game then it is hunting with the hound and playing with the hare. But can he play on until his kingdom comes!

The world is a large stage and he cannot strut and fret forever. Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more. It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.


Mustafa Khan, who resides in Malegaon (Maharashtra), has the following blog:

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