Given the overall control of the strategic role of RSS on the formulation of a Hindu state the manifest bearing, on the relation with Pakistan is catastrophic. It was this line of thinking that was winning the game then, in past and even now. There was no communalism when the bombs blew up at the graveyard mosque and Mushawarat chowk in Malegaon 2006 and 2008. Hindus and Muslims alike were shocked and disturbed by what happened and offered blood donation. In both incidents, the Muslims protested and were shot upon by the police.
This despite the fact that on September 5 2006 PM Manmohan Singh had cautioned about terrorist attacks by fidayeen from across the border. He was addressing the chief ministers of the country. Marathi’s paper Sakaal of Wednesday 6, 2006 condemned it on the front page that targeting the minority for extremism and terrorism was regrettable. This was borne out two days later. When Abrar was named, the Senior SP Rajwardhan Sinha warned him to go in hiding because Hindus and Muslims would assault him for the attack.
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How do the events transpired?
It is already too late in the day but the phone calls of President Donald Trump to PM Narendra Modi and subsequently to PM Imran Khan on August 19, 2019, and then again on the following day and thereafter in the preparation of the G7 meeting later in the week, are insistently full of concern for the US as well as the subcontinent. It is imperative for both Modi and Khan to heed. The subcontinental leaders have the onus of responsibility to save their countries from the brink of self-destruction, what with defense minister Rajnath Singh going all out for the first option of attacking Pakistan with a nuclear attack.
In such a dire situation there is no use in taking false posture as does Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat: “Since there are Sangh workers in BJP and this government, they will listen to RSS, but it is not mandatory for them to agree with us. They can disagree as well.” This cavalier see-saw attitude is a false excuse. It is akin to the fox serenading the cock to keep the door open and go to sleep after opening the door and eating the grain it has brought to the cock. In a time of reckoning, this will not do. The nuclear bomb has the thumb ready to press the button. Does he who ultimately takes the decision reside in Nagpur or Delhi shouldn’t be a matter of time.
The two leaders must also have the foresight and hindsight of President Bill Clinton as he displayed it on the visit to India vis-à-vis the massacre of Chittisingpora in Kashmir in 2000 which the US officials knew better than India. Despite this, he dared to visit because he was the president of a country that wanted to assert its superpower position and not the dilly-dallying of the subcontinental variety.
Before any further talk takes place between the neighbors it is in the interest that we know our home countries better than President Trump. The Secretary of State of the US government has a wider range of experience of her own as did Madeleine Albright who criticized the Hindus for the massacre of 40 Sikhs in March 2000 at Chittisingpora. And even President Clinton knew it because he asserted that he knew the ground situation and the palpable danger to the people in the valley on account of his visit but had to perform his duty of the most powerful leader in the world.
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Gainsaying that no violence would take place during his stay in the country
In contrast, PM Dr. Manmohan Singh was at the helm of the affair and was unlike his predecessor PM AB Vajpayee whom an American journalist described as “asleep at the wheel.” One such blunder was he let Modi continue as CM when he had made up his mind for a change of leadership in the state of Gujarat. Another man who blundered was LK Advani, Modi’s mentor, who had threatened to resign if Vajpayee went ahead with his resolve of sacking Modi. So, there is a need for caution. Rajnath Singh was chief minister of UP when the kar sevak laden train crisscrossed UP with unruly volunteers for making the Ram temple at Ayodhya in 2002. Singh did not send a report on the unruly passengers to warn Gujarat police of likely fallout. If he orders the first nuclear attack, does he have the caliber of a statesman to take such a momentous step?
Manmohan Singh has had a tryst with destiny. On September 5, 2006, he addressed the chief ministers in a meeting in Delhi and exhorted them against a witch hunt as far as Muslims are concerned. They would be targets of terrorism. That happened on September 8 2006 in Malegaon. On September 17, 2008, he again addressed the governors of the states. He asserted that there have been gaps in the intelligence collected by the intelligence agencies. That followed the second bomb blast on September 29, 2008, in Malegaon. This slip slop will be anathema to the US.
Madeleine Albright found fault with terrorism in India and criticized Hindus in her book The Mighty and the Almighty: Reflections on America, God, and World Affairs. The blank assertion that Hindus cannot be terrorists doesn’t hold water. What Bhagwat imitates when he says Modi hai to mumkin hai, everything is possible for Modi’
At 11 PM Monday, September 12, 2016, I went out for a casual stroll as the children were caterwauling late for the festival of Bakrid that was due to begin after just 7 hours. There were two cops at the corner off the Mahade Millat madrassa and Nomani mosque, Malegaon. A burly butcher was goading a huge buffalo which his younger son was pulling with a rope on the lonely road spotted with occasional two-wheelers speeding fast.
I was filled with a premonition of what the morning this night would lead to for the people of Kashmir. All the ten districts would be under curfew. There would just be two mosques Hazrat Bal and Idgah where the public congregation would gather for the morning Id prayer. The Indian government was determined to let the cops use pellet guns and fire on the public in case they came out and made any attempt to march to the office of UNO. The natives would surely again demand freedom from Indian rule. That would give away the truth that neither Pakistan nor anyone else is engineering the huge protests but the Kashmiri people whose iron resolve to have freedom at last—that tryst with destiny for them seems to have come now as never before.
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There was no panic and life continued as usual
Second Kristallnacht came towards sunset on September 21, 2016, when Pakistan banned flights and ordered the closure of the highways. Fear gripped people now that Modi was under pressure from his closest ally, Uddhav Thackeray who mocked him saying that even if Uri attack-proof is provided international platforms would not believe it. That was in the editorial of Saamna of September 19. Whether the Pakistanis feel nervous or not by the imminent threat of a possible surgical strike with a nuclear short-range attack is for them to worry. But Indian Muslims showed grave concern what with attacks on them reported daily in newspapers and even Hindu women burning buses in several dozens for suspected beef biryani served to the customer passengers in them.
No report of the minority taking out any protest march or gathering anywhere. They are non-committal on the Kashmir protests however they note how Thackeray mocked Modi and his lieutenant MP Sanjay Raut joined the chorus of condemnation of Nawaz Sharif’s UNGA address.
Even the Director-General of Police, Maharashtra, Dr. PS Pasricha had said a day after the Malegaon attack in 2006 that it was the work of Bajrang Dal. He had also admitted that a Maharashtrian leader was behind the July 11, 2006 attack in Mumbai. In both the events, the general perception of terror was that Pakistanis were responsible. India’s most famous attack was on November 25, 2008, on the Taj Hotel. One who was accused of drawing the map to guide the attackers like Ajmal Kasab was Faheem Ansari. He was acquitted of this and other roles in terrorism. He came out of jail as recently as October 31, 2019. This miscarriage of justice is on account of the impunity enjoyed by Indians who are either politicians or members of RSS, Bajrang Dal. So, the need of the hour is to define terrorism and abolish impunity.