Category Archives: Threats

Muslims groups in Hyderabad raise tension against GHMC demolition drive

GHMC, Greater Hyderabad Municipal corporation has taken up road widening in many parts of the city of Hyderabad as per court orders. In Amberpet, a private property was also demolished after the necessary compensation was promised couple of days back.  This private property was also running a small chicken shop earlier, was alleged to have been an illegal ghori which was later illegally constructed into a dargah. All this is speculation.  Some Muslim groups raised a ruckus and the TRS government fell on its knees and promised reconstruction of a masjid which in itself was illegal. The Waqf board seized the opportunity and put up a board.

Illegal board put up

On Sunday, citizens protested against this illegal occupation that was being done with police protection . Some Muslims indulged in violence on the protesting citizens. This itself was surprising since the the decision was taken by the government.  The citizens also retaliated in defence.

Some political leaders also jumped into the fray and media is now quick to show it with bizaare headlines as if it is a conflict between two groups when in fact it is a defiance of Muslim groups of the government.


Will Bengal Save Itself from the New Wave of Jihad Supported by Mamata ?

In a sensational newsbreak from Raiganj in West Bengal, _*Times Now*_ has learned that voters in the constituency are being discriminated against on religious lines as voting progressed in the second phase of the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections on Thursday.

Hindu voters at a village in the constituency have alleged that while some were stopped from proceeding towards the polling booth, others claimed that bogus votes in their names had already been cast when they reached the polling station in the morning.

As per details available and eyewitness accounts, voters belonging to the Hindu religion were stopped from casting their votes by some Muslim men and their voter identity cards were also taken away.

 A Sickular Fascist who is dangerous to democracy.

In a sensational newsbreak from Raiganj in West Bengal, _*Times Now*_ has learned that voters in the constituency are being discriminated against on religious lines as voting progressed in the second phase of the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections on Thursday.

Hindu voters at a village in the constituency have alleged that while some were stopped from proceeding towards the polling booth, others claimed that bogus votes in their names had already been cast when they reached the polling station in the morning.

As per details available and eyewitness accounts, voters belonging to the Hindu religion were stopped from casting their votes by some Muslim men and their voter identity cards were also taken away.

Mamata working earnestly to make Bengal from Dar Al-Harb to Dar Al-Islam

Hindus disallowed from Performing Durga Puja, Kali Puja and Saraswati Puja in many parts of Bengal. Muhharam gets a thumps up instantly whereas Ram Navami Procession has to pass numerous scrutiny to be allowed.

Mamata issues a ‘fatwa’ that immersions will be restricted and will only begin after Muharram is over. Enforces shift from ramdhonu to rongdhonu, from jal to pani,

Few days ago to be specific on 03rd October 2018 a rally if thousands of Muslims was held in kolkata which demanded Muslim Mayor for Kolkata, Muslim Commissioner and increase in Imam stipend.

And if you closely look into how cleverly Govt has given into the demands. Mamata did made sure that Sovan Chatterjee resigns as Mayor of Kolkata and Firad Hakim is made the mayor of Kolkata. Similarly other demands are also in process of being accepted.

Sharia to come soon in Bengal? (attachment has a picture scan of the leaflet announcing Sharia)

Posters being distributed in Bengal

In north Bengal, leaflets are being distributed “dos and don’ts in the Sharia land.

Some examples include – Commercial Establishments are prohibited from keeping anything HARAM (forbidden in Islam) – includes food and other items. If a muslim goes to a Hindu establishment and desires to eat cow meat, then he cannot be stopped. Similarly no muslim can be stopped from eating meat if others around are vegetarian. Christian establishments selling/ consuming haram pork meat need to stop immediately. Any haram items found on the menu are liable to punishment as per Sharia law. Similarly medicines and toiletries manufacturing cannot use haram ingredients.  For women to step out of homes to work and roam about without purdah (female seclusion in Muslim communities) are punishable offences as per Islamic sharia. All those giving them jobs/allowing them to work are equally guilty. Hence, all women employees need to be let go immediately. In case of special circumstances where women need to be kept employed, they need to be kept in purdah and will have to wear burqa (enveloping outer garment worn by Muslim women)

Percentage Didi. Will the 30% of Muslim vote ensure her to continue 10% commission mafia

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, finally admitted the texture of her politics of appeasement. She said that since 30 per cent of her electorate were Muslims, she had to cater to them; had to appease them; had to manage them and ensure that they received preference over the remaining 70 per cent of her electorate.

She was speaking on the sidelines of a protest meet held over the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh. For those who say that she never speaks out, or had kept silent throughout the violence in Kaliachak, Dhulagarh, Nadia and Basihart, where Hindu families and villages were attacked, markets burnt, places of worship vandalised, it was a moment when they were proved wrong.

Even Sugata Bose, the senior Trinamool Congress leader has not been spared of this mafia.  These very lumpens demanded their pound when he tried to carry out some restoration work in Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose’s ancestral house in Kolkata. it is this same Bose who, in his interventions in Parliament, keeps talking about how, ever since Prime Minister Modi’s arrival, the democratic spirit of the country is being threatened and is under duress!

Are we waiting for a repeat of Direct Action Day?

If one reads, for example, Syama Prasad Mookerjee’s diary entry of January 1944, one finds a stark similarity between Suhrawardy’s Bengal and Mamata Banerjee’s West Bengal, or at least a West Bengal that is surely and steadily being pushed into that state. West Bengal Hindus suffered the most in the maximum number of riots that have happened on Mamta Daayan’s watch – Kaliachak or Malda Riots, 2016, Illambazar violence, Hazinagar clashes, Dhulagarh clash, Jalangi incident, Clash in West Midnapore, Burdwan  clash and so on

Arise Hindu , Arise Bharat ! 


अनुसूचित जाती आणि इत्तेहाद-उल-मुसलीमीन

” हैदराबाद संस्थानामधील अनुसूचित जाती समाजाने कुठल्याही परिस्थितीत निझामाची व इत्तेहाद-उल-मुसलीमीनची बाजू घेऊ नये…  अनुसूचित जाती समाजातील कुठल्याही व्यक्तीने देशाच्या दुश्मनांची बाजू घेऊन, अनुसूचित जातिला काळिमा फासू  नये.” –  
डॉ. भीमराव रामजी आंबेडकर, लिखाण आणि भाषणे, खंड-१७, भाग १, शिक्षण विभाग, महाराष्ट्र सरकार.

మన కర్తవ్యమేమిటి?

అర్నాల్డ్‌ టాయన్బీ ఇలా అన్నారు – ”పాకిస్థాన్‌ ఏమిటి? ఈ దేశాన్ని (భారత్‌) పూర్తిగా ఆక్రమించు కోవాలన్న ముస్లిముల 1200 ఏళ్ల కలకు 20వ శతాబ్దంలో పడ్డ మొదటి అడుగు”

తీవ్రమైన అంతర్గత సంక్షోభం ఎదుర్కొంటు న్నప్పటికి పాకిస్థాన్‌ మాత్రం భారత్‌పై, హిందువు లపై నిరంతర దాడికి పాల్పడుతూనే ఉంది. పుల్వామా దాడికి కారకుడైన ఉగ్రవాది విడుదల చేసిన వీడియో వాట్సప్‌లో బాగా ప్రచారం అయింది. అందులో అతని బదులు ఎవరో మాట్లాడినట్లు స్పష్టంగా తెలిసిపోతున్నా, అతను మాట్లాడిన మాటలు మాత్రం జాగ్రత్తగా గమనించాలి. ముష్రిక్‌ ల (బహుదేవతారాధకులు) నివాసమైన హిందూస్థాన్‌పై, గోమూత్రాన్ని సేవించేవారిపై(హిందువులు) అతను యుద్ధాన్ని ప్రకటించాడు. ఇస్లాంను కఠినంగా పాటించని, హిందువులతో స్నేహం చేసిన ముస్లిములను ఆ వీడియోలో అతను మందలించాడు కూడా.

కాశ్మీర్‌ యువత ఉగ్రవాదం వైపు ఎందుకు ఆకర్షితులవుతున్నారు, ఎందుకు ఆత్మాహుతి దాడులకు పాల్పడుతున్నారన్న చర్చ బాగా సాగింది. టీవీల్లో సాగిన అలాంటి ఒక చర్చలో కార్గిల్‌ యుద్ధంలో పాల్గొన్నారని చెపుతున్న ఒక వ్యక్తి స్థానిక యువత ఇలా ఉగ్రవాదులుగా మారడానికి కారణం రాజకీయాలంటూ ఆగ్రహం వ్యక్తం చేశారు. ఆయనేకాదు ఎవరూ అసలు వారిని ఉగ్రవాదులుగా మారుస్తున్న సిద్ధాంతం, దాని ప్రచారం గురించి మాటమాత్రంగానైనా ప్రస్తావించలేదు. జిహాదీ ఉగ్రవాదం వల్ల ప్రపంచంలోని అన్నీ దేశాలు నష్టపోతున్నాయి. అయిన దీనికి కారణమవుతున్న ఖురాన్‌లోని ఆయాత్‌లు, వాటి ద్వారా జరుగుతున్నా ప్రచారాన్ని మాత్రం ప్రశ్నించడానికి ఎవరు ధైర్యం చేయరు. పైగా మనుషుల్లో మంచివాళ్లు, చెడ్డవాళ్లని ఉంటారని, ఉగ్రవాదానికి మతం ఉండదని సుద్దులు చెపుతుంటారు. ఉగ్రవాదం వల్ల భారత్‌ నష్ట పోతున్నప్పుడు పట్టించుకొని అమెరికా సెప్టెంబర్‌ 2011 దాడులతో ఉలిక్కిపడిండింది. ఇప్పుడు యూరోప్‌ కూడా మేలుకొంటోంది.

పుల్వామా దాడులకు తగిన ప్రతీకారం తీర్చుకుంటామని, భద్రతాదళాలకు పూర్తి స్వేచ్ఛను ఇచ్చామని ప్రధాని ప్రకటించారు. అందుకు తగినట్లుగానే భారత యుద్ధ విమానాలు వాస్తవాధీన రేఖా (కూూజ) దాటి పాకిస్థాన్‌లోని బాలకోట్‌ ఉగ్రవాద శిబిరాలపై దాడి చేసి, వాటిని పూర్తిగా ధ్వంసం చేశాయి కూడా. అయితే ప్రభుత్వాలు, సైన్యం చేయాల్సినవి అవి చేస్తాయి. కానీ ప్రజానీకం ఏమి చేయాలి? ఉగ్రభూతం వల్ల నష్టపోకుండా ఎలాంటి జాగ్రత్తలు తీసుకోవాలి? ఎలాంటి ధోరణి కలిగిఉండాలి? ప్రభుత్వానికి, సైన్యానికి ఎలా సహకరించాలి?

– నిత్య జాగరూకత వల్లనే స్వాతంత్య్రం నిలబడుతుంది. అవగాహన, విషయపరిజ్ఞానం వల్ల జాగరూకత కలుగుతుంది. శాంతి మతానికి చెందిన పాఠశాలల్లో ఏం చెపుతున్నారు, అది మొత్తం సమాజాన్ని ఎలా ప్రభావితం చేస్తున్నాదనే అవగాహన ఉండాలి.

– అలాగే ‘శాంతి సందేశాలు’, ‘స్నేహపూర్వక సంబంధాల’ గురించి సుద్దులు చెప్పేవారిని నిలదీయాలి. మత ఛాందసవాదం, పిడివాదం ఎక్కడ ప్రారంభమయింది, ఎక్కడ నుంచి ప్రచారం అవుతోంది, ప్రపం చాన్ని ఎలా నష్ట పరుస్తోంది అనే విషయాలు చర్చించ కుండా తప్పించు కోవడానికి వీలులేదని స్పష్టం చేయాలి.

– దేశం మొత్తాన్ని ప్రభావితం చేసే అంశాల గురించి అందరితో చర్చిం చాలి. ఎందుకంటే దేశ భద్రత అందరి బాధ్యత. అందరికీ అవసరం.

– మతం ముసుగులో ప్రచారమవుతున్న ప్రమాదకర సిద్ధాంతాల గురించి కుటుంబ సభ్యులతోపాటు బంధువర్గానికి కూడా తెలియచేసే ప్రయత్నం చేయాలి.

– దీనికి సంబంధించిన ముఖ్యమైన కొన్ని పుస్తకాలు చదవాలి. తెలుగులో జిహాద్‌, మూల సూత్రాలు, ఇస్లాం సామ్రాజ్యవాదం మొదలైనవి, ఆంగ్లంలో ఖురానిక్‌ కన్సెప్ట్‌ ఆఫ్‌ వార్‌, వరల్డ్‌ ఆఫ్‌ ఫత్వాస్‌, కలకత్తా ఖురాన్‌ పిటిషన్‌, అండర్‌ స్టాండింగ్‌ ఇస్లాం త్రూ హదీస్‌, జిహాద్‌ ఆర్‌ ది డాక్ట్రిన్‌ ఆఫ్‌ వార్‌ మొదలైనవి.

– చాలామంది అంటూ ఉంటారు ‘నా స్నేహితులు అలాంటివారు కారు’ అని. నిజమే. అందరూ అలా ఉండరు. కానీ పెద్ద సంఖ్యలో జన నష్టం చేయాలను కుని ఆత్మాహుతి దాడులు చేసే ఉగ్రవాదులను మీ స్నేహితులు ఏమి ఆపలేరు. అది వాళ్ళ చేతుల్లో లేదు. వాళ్ళు ముల్లా, మౌల్వీ చెప్పినదానినిబట్టి అలాంటి ఉగ్ర ధోరణిని అలవరచుకుంటారు. కాబట్టి ఆ ‘మతాధికారి’ ఏం చెపుతున్నదనేది ముఖ్యం.

– భద్రతా బలగాలకు చేతనైన పద్దతిలో మద్దతు, సహకారం అందించాలి.

– చుట్టుపక్కల ఉండే వారు, ముఖ్యంగా యువత దేశ భద్రత గురించి ఆలోచించేట్లు చేయాలి. అందుకు రోజులో కొంత సమయం కేటాయించాలి.

– కాలనీల్లో, నివాస ప్రాంతాల్లో రక్షా సమితులు ఏర్పాటు చేసుకోవాలి.

– పుల్వామా ఉగ్ర దాడి(14 ఫిబ్రవరి), దాడికి ప్రతీకారంగా పాకిస్థాన్‌ లోని ఉగ్రవాద స్థావరాలపై భారత వైమానిక దళం జరిపిన దాడి (ఫిబ్రవరి, 26) లను మరచిపోకూడదు. ఫిబ్రవరి 14 ను అర్ధంలేని ‘దినం’గా జరుపుకోకుండా అమర జవానుల శ్రద్ధాంజలి దినంగా జరుపుకోవాలి.

ఇవన్నీ చేసినప్పుడు దేశ భద్రత కోసం ప్రభుత్వం తీసుకునే చర్యలు మరింత త్వరగా, బాగా ఫలవంతమవుతాయి.

– ఆయుష్‌ నడింపల్లి

Kandahar Plane Hijack and the NDA government

Each time an issue of acting tough on terrorists, the so-called abject surrender of NDA government under Vajpayee ji is brought up. This article by Sri Kanchan Gupta throws light about the events that transpired. It is the people’s will that makes a government strong and stand up ! Was our Nation upto it ?

Was it really an ‘abject surrender’ by the NDA Government?

There have been innumerable communal riots in India, nearly all of them in States ruled by the Congress at the time of the violence, yet everybody loves to pretend that blood was shed in the name of religion for the first time in Gujarat in 2002 and that the BJP Government headed by Mr Narendra Modi must bear the burden of the cross.

Similarly, nobody remembers the various incidents of Indian Airlines aircraft being hijacked when the Congress was in power at the Centre, the deals that were struck to rescue the hostages, and the compromises that were made at the expense of India’s dignity and honour. But everybody remembers the hijacking of IC 814 and nearly a decade after the incident, many people still hold the BJP-led NDA Government responsible for the ‘shameful’ denouement.

The Indian Airlines flight from Kathmandu to New Delhi, designated IC 814, with 178 passengers and 11 crew members on board, was hijacked on Christmas Eve, 1999, a short while after it took-off from Tribhuvan International Airport; by then, the aircraft had entered Indian airspace. Nine years later to the day, with an entire generation coming of age, it would be in order to recall some facts and place others on record.

In 1999 I was serving as an aide to Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the PMO, and I still have vivid memories of the tumultuous week between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. Mr Vajpayee had gone out of Delhi on an official tour; I had accompanied him along with other officials of the PMO. The hijacking of IC 814 occurred while we were returning to Delhi in one of the two Indian Air Force Boeings which, in those days, were used by the Prime Minister for travel within the country.

Curiously, the initial information about IC 814 being hijacked, of which the IAF was believed to have been aware, was not communicated to the pilot of the Prime Minister’s aircraft. As a result, Mr Vajpayee and his aides remained unaware of the hijacking till reaching Delhi. This caused some amount of controversy later.

It was not possible for anybody else to have contacted us while we were in midair. It’s strange but true that the Prime Minister of India would be incommunicado while on a flight because neither the ageing IAF Boeings nor the Air India Jumbos, used for official travel abroad (in those days), had satellite phone facilities.

By the time our aircraft landed in Delhi, it was around 7:00 pm, a full hour and 40 minutes since the hijacking of IC 814. After disembarking from the aircraft in the VIP bay of Palam Technical Area, we were surprised to find National Security Adviser Brajesh Mishra waiting at the foot of the ladder. He led Mr Vajpayee aside and gave him the news. They got into the Prime Minister’s car and it sped out of the Technical Area. Some of us followed Mr. Vajpayee to Race Course Road, as was the normal routine.

On our way to the Prime Minister’s residence, colleagues in the PMO provided us with the basic details. The Kathmandu-Delhi flight had been commandeered by five hijackers (later identified as Ibrahim Athar, resident of Bahawalpur, Shahid Akhtar Sayed, Gulshan Iqbal, resident of Karachi, Sunny Ahmed Qazi, resident of Defence Area, Karachi, Mistri Zahoor Ibrahim, resident of Akhtar Colony, Karachi, and Shakir, resident of Sukkur City) at 5:20 pm; there were 189 passengers and crew members on board; and that the aircraft was heading towards Lahore.

At the Prime Minister’s residence, senior Ministers and Secretaries had already been summoned for an emergency meeting. Mr Mishra left for the crisis control room that had been set up at Rajiv Bhavan. In between meetings, Mr Vajpayee instructed his personal staff to cancel all celebrations planned for December 25, his birthday. The Cabinet Committee on Security met late into the night as our long vigil began.

Meanwhile, we were informed that the pilot of IC 814 had been denied permission to land at Lahore airport. With fuel running low, he was heading for Amritsar. Officials at Raja Sansi Airport were immediately alerted and told to prevent the plane from taking off after it had landed there.

The hijacked plane landed at Amritsar and remained parked on the tarmac for nearly 45 minutes. The hijackers demanded that the aircraft be refuelled. The airport officials ran around like so many headless chickens, totally clueless about what was to be done in a crisis situation.

Desperate calls were made to the officials at Raja Sansi Airport to somehow stall the refuelling and prevent the plane from taking off. The officials just failed to respond with alacrity. At one point, an exasperated Jaswant Singh, if memory serves me right, grabbed the phone and pleaded with an official, “Just drive a heavy vehicle, a fuel truck or a road roller or whatever you have, onto the runway and park it there.” But all this was to no avail.

The National Security Guards, whose job it is to deal with hostage situations, were alerted immediately after news first came in of IC 814 being hijacked; they were reportedly asked to stand by for any emergency. The Home Ministry was again alerted when it became obvious that after being denied permission to land at Lahore, the pilot was heading towards Amritsar.

Yet, despite IC 814 remaining parked at Amritsar for three-quarters of an hour, the NSG commandos failed to reach the aircraft. There are two versions as to why the NSG didn’t show up: First, they were waiting for an aircraft to ferry them from Delhi to Amritsar; second, they were caught in a traffic jam between Manesar and Delhi airport. The real story was never known!

The hijackers, anticipating commando action, first stabbed a passenger, Rupin Katyal (he had gone to Kathmandu with his newly wedded wife for their honeymoon; had they not extended their stay by a couple of days, they wouldn’t have been on the ill-fated flight) to show that they meant business, and then forced the pilot to take off from Amritsar. With almost empty fuel tanks, the pilot had no other option but to make another attempt to land at Lahore airport. Once again he was denied permission and all the lights, including those on the runway, were switched off. He nonetheless went ahead and landed at Lahore airport, showing remarkable skill and courage.

Mr Jaswant Singh spoke to the Pakistani Foreign Minister and pleaded with him to prevent the aircraft from taking off again. But the Pakistanis would have nothing of it (they wanted to distance themselves from the hijacking so that they could claim later that there was no Pakistan connection) and wanted IC 814 off their soil and out of their airspace as soon as possible. So, they refuelled the aircraft after which the hijackers forced the pilot to head for Dubai.

At Dubai, too, officials were reluctant to allow the aircraft to land. It required all the persuasive skills of Mr Jaswant Singh and our then Ambassador to UAE, Mr KC Singh, to secure landing permission. There was some negotiation with the hijackers through UAE officials and they allowed 13 women and 11 children to disembark. Rupin Katyal had by then bled to death. His body was offloaded. His widow remained a hostage till the end.

On the morning of December 25, the aircraft left Dubai and headed towards Afghanistan. It landed at Kandahar Airport, which had one serviceable runway, a sort of ATC and a couple of shanties. The rest of the airport was in a shambles, without power and water supply, a trophy commemorating the Taliban’s rule.

On Christmas Eve, after news of the hijacking broke, there was stunned all-round silence. But by noon on December 25, orchestrated protests outside the Prime Minister’s residence began, with women beating their chests and tearing their clothes. The crowd swelled by the hour as the day progressed.

Ms Brinda Karat came to commiserate with the relatives of the hostages who were camping outside the main gate of 7, Race Course Road. In fact, she became a regular visitor over the next few days. There was a steady clamour that the Government should pay any price to bring the hostages back home, safe and sound. This continued till December 30.

One evening, the Prime Minister asked his staff to let the families come in so that they could be told about the Government’s efforts to secure the hostages’ release. By then negotiations had begun and Mullah Omar had got into the act through his ‘Foreign Minister’, Muttavakil. The hijackers wanted 36 terrorists, held in various Indian jails, to be freed or else they would blow up the aircraft with the hostages.

No senior Minister in the CCS was willing to meet the families. Mr Jaswant Singh volunteered to do so. He asked me to accompany him to the canopy under which the families had gathered. Once there, we were literally mobbed. He tried to explain the situation but was shouted down.

“We want our relatives back. What difference does it make to us what you have to give the hijackers?” a man shouted. “We don’t care if you have to give away Kashmir,” a woman screamed and others took up the refrain, chanting: “Kashmir de do, kuchh bhi de do, hamare logon ko ghar wapas lao.” Another woman sobbed, “Mera beta… hai mera beta…” and made a great show of fainting of grief.

To his credit, Mr Jaswant Singh made bold to suggest that the Government had to keep the nation’s interest in mind, that we could not be seen to be giving in to the hijackers, or words to that effect, in chaste Hindi. That fetched him abuse and rebuke. “Bhaand me jaaye desh aur bhaand me jaaye desh ka hit. (To hell with the country and national interest),” many in the crowd shouted back. Stumped by the response, Mr Jaswant Singh could merely promise that the Government would do everything possible.

I do not remember the exact date, but sometime during the crisis, Mr Jaswant Singh was asked to hold a Press conference to brief the media. While the briefing was on at the Press Information Bureau hall in Shastri Bhavan, some families of the hostages barged in and started shouting slogans. They were led by one Sanjiv Chibber, who, I was later told, was a ‘noted surgeon’: He claimed six of his relatives were among the hostages.

Dr Chibber wanted all 36 terrorists named by the hijackers to be released immediately. He reminded everybody in the hall that in the past terrorists had been released from prison to secure the freedom of Ms Rubayya Sayeed, daughter of Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, while he was Home Minister in VP Singh’s Government. “Why can’t you release the terrorists now when our relatives are being held hostage?” he demanded. And then we heard the familiar refrain: “Give away Kashmir, give them anything they want, we don’t give a damn.”

On another evening, there was a surprise visitor at the PMO: The widow of Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja, whose plane was shot down during the Kargil war. She insisted that she should be taken to meet the relatives of the hostages. At Race Course Road, she spoke to mediapersons and the hostages’ relatives, explaining why India must not be seen giving in to the hijackers, that it was a question of national honour, and gave her own example of fortitude in the face of adversity.

“She has become a widow, now she wants others to become widows. Who is she to lecture us? Yeh kahan se aayi?” someone shouted from the crowd. Others heckled her. The young widow stood her ground, displaying great dignity and courage. As the mood turned increasingly ugly, she had to be led away. Similar appeals were made by others who had lost their sons, husbands and fathers in the Kargil war that summer. Col Virendra Thapar, whose son Lt Vijayant Thapar was martyred in the war, made a fervent appeal for people to stand united against the hijackers. It fell on deaf ears.

The media made out that the overwhelming majority of Indians were with the relatives of the hostages and shared their view that no price was too big to secure the hostages’ freedom. The Congress kept on slyly insisting, “We are with the Government and will support whatever it does for a resolution of the crisis and to ensure the safety of the hostages. But the Government must explain its failure.” Harkishen Singh Surjeet and other Opposition politicians issued similar ambiguous statements.

By December 28, the Government’s negotiators had struck a deal with the hijackers: They would free the hostages in exchange of three dreaded terrorists — Maulana Masood Azhar, Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar and Ahmed Omar Sheikh — facing various charges of terrorism.

The CCS met frequently, several times a day, and discussed the entire process threadbare. The Home Minister, the Defence Minister and the Foreign Minister, apart from the National Security Adviser and the Prime Minister, were present at every meeting. The deal was further fine-tuned, the Home Ministry completed the necessary paper work, and two Indian Airlines aircraft were placed on standby to ferry the terrorists to Kandahar and fetch the hostages.

On December 31, the two aircraft left Delhi airport early in the morning. Mr Jaswant Singh was on board one of them. Did his ministerial colleagues know that he would travel to Kandahar? More important, was the Prime Minister aware of it? The answer is both yes and no.

Mr Jaswant Singh had mentioned his decision to go to Kandahar to personally oversee the release of hostages and to ensure there was no last-minute problem. He was honour-bound to do so, he is believed to have said, since he had promised the relatives of the hostages that no harm would come their way. It is possible that nobody thought he was serious about his plan. It is equally possible that others turned on him when the ‘popular mood’ and the Congress turned against the Government for its ‘abject surrender’.

On New Year’s eve, the hostages were flown back to Delhi. By New Year’s day, the Government was under attack for giving in to the hijackers’ demand! Since then, this ‘shameful surrender’ is held against the NDA and Mr Jaswant Singh is painted as the villain of the piece.

Could the Kandahar episode have ended any other way? Were an Indian aircraft to be hijacked again, would we respond any differently? Not really. As a nation we do not have the guts to stand up to terrorism. We cannot take hits and suffer casualties. We start counting our dead even before a battle has been won or lost. We make a great show of honouring those who die on the battlefield and lionise brave hearts of history, but we do not want our children to follow in their footsteps.

We are, if truth be told, a nation of cowards who don’t have the courage to admit their weakness but are happy to blame a well-meaning politician who, perhaps, takes his regimental motto of ‘Izzat aur Iqbal’ rather too seriously.

(This was originally published in The Pioneer on December 24, 2008.)

Source : Kanchan Gupta Blog