Thursday, August 28, 2008

Hartal or Terrorism?

This is an excellent and thought-provoking post by one of our readers, Satish from Dubai

Given below are some definitions of the word, TERRORISM, that I was able to collect.
In one modern definition of terrorism, it is violence against civilians to achieve political, religious, personal, or ideological objectives by creating fear. This includes the use of violence for the achievement of political ends and thereby influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion.

The United Kingdom defines acts of terrorism in the Terrorism Act 2000 as the use or threat of action where:
· the use or threat is designed to influence the government or to intimidate the public or a section of the public
· the use or threat is made for the purpose of advancing a political, religious or ideological cause
· involves serious violence against a person
· involves serious damage to property
· endangers a person's life, other than that of the person committing the action
· creates a serious risk to the health or safety of the public or a section of the public or
· is designed to seriously interfere with or to seriously disrupt an electronic system

The US FBI’s definition is "Terrorism is the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a Government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives."

In one of its rulings, the Supreme Court of India had opined that "It may be possible to describe (terrorism) as the use of violence when its most important result is not merely the physical and mental damage of the victim, but the prolonged psychological effect it produces or has the potential of producing, on the society as a whole. There may be death, injury, or destruction of property or even deprivation of individual liberty in the process but the extent and reach of the intended terrorist activity travels beyond the effect of an ordinary crime capable of being punished under the ordinary penal law of the land, and its main objective is to overawe the Government and disturb the harmony of the society or "terrorise" people and the society and not only those directly assaulted, with a view to disturb the even tempo, peace and tranquility of the society and create a sense of fear and insecurity"

Looking at the above in the context of the recent spate of Hartals in Kerala, I am inclined to believe that, to a large extent, the state is in the grip of 'political terrorists'. Can any of the political party representatives who were on the panel on a recent show aired on Asianet repudiate this? Most of them were talking as if protest is a kind of divine right. Yes, people should have the right to protest in any democratic state, but not at the expense of development or well-being of the very society that the protest is intended to aid.

I am sure that the majority of the so-called "common man" will fully agree to look at this form of protest in a new dimension on the basis of the above definitions. How soon will we be able to bring about some respite to this hijack of public peace in our beautiful state?

Bring in TADA against the political terrorists?!!!

Heres something funny related to hartals/bandhs (click to enlarge):


Jackson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jackson said...

[reposting this comment, sorry :-)]

i don't think most hartals help anyone nowadays, other than the bullies who get instant gratification from smashing people and things or the shortsighted senile party ideologues who believe fear is an acceptable substitute for respect..
i think i remember hearing as a school kid that workers in japan would strike by overworking and over-producing, giving their employers a surplus of goods that they could do nothing with.. the employess got the point pretty fast, and i don't think the workers had to strike much more.. sounds like gandhigiri to me.. i suppose such methods wouldn't get through the thick skins of our illustrious leaders, though..

PCM said...

Congratulations, Sathish!
What you have stated is true to the core, but are like beautiful flowers displayed before the blind. How many of our politicians know this much and, worse still, how many would be interested to know?
Kerala is said to be a 100% literate State, but its fate is destined to be decided by virtual illiterates, who don't want to see beyond their noses. This is a place where sanity is a curse, foresight is a burden and the desire for progress is a mirage.
A better course of action is not to worry about something that has no solution.

Madhavan said...

I agree with you 100%.Hartal are sheer violation of human rights! Every human has his freedom to travel around and do busimess as usual. The goons who exort hartals has no right to refrain people at their homes.Even the West Bengal CM is getting wiser, Buddedev has voiced his discontent of hartals; but his party & the Kerala CM has snubbed him and said it was worker's right to conduct hartals!
God save Kerala!

silverine said...

"I am inclined to believe that, to a large extent, the state is in the grip of 'political terrorists'"

I think this is the first time someone has clearly defined and identified the problem. Kudos!

Anonymous said...

Excellent post! As Kerala's main tourist attraction is the widely observed Festival of Hartal, it's quite appropriate to change the name of tourism department to terrorism department and outsource it to DYFI and other such organisations.

Anonymous said...

Majority of sensible people from Kerala are outside the state. They never think of settling back there as these political terrorists have taken over the state. A minority left there prefer Hartal / holidays to celebrate at the cost of majority who have no guts to respond. Governments only think of keeping the poor alive offering subsidised rice for a few days than thinking of feeding them permanently. They are good at distributing the public asset or land to those who just dont want to do any work and enjoy all the freebies and subsidies without shame

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