OPINION

The Colours of Terrorism

August 31, 2010
Suresh Naig

The recent statement of P. Chidambaram while addressing top police officials advising them to be cautious about saffron terrorism might appear a political statement, but it has more sinister meaning for the nation and human kind. His statement forebodes the rot within his party's thinking and policies. Terrorists - whether Maoists, Kashmir militants, Taliban, Tamil Tigers or for that matter Saffron terrorists, use ideology as a façade for their existence and most of the times it remains and dies as a façade.

Irrespective of different ideologies, the common thread between these organisations is only terror, and the primary responsibility of the home minister is to safeguard the public from any form of terror. If he means business he will not waste his time attributing colour, religion, ideology etc. to terrorism and fight terrorism as terrorism. Simply put, a terrorist is a terrorist is a terrorist and calling them by any other name will only provide an excuse for their existence and will never contribute ways to weed them.

While PC was at his inept best in dealing with terrorism, a dangerous trend is noticed with human rights activists and intellectual tribes. They use the coinage "State sponsored terrorism" as the reverse reason for the existence of terrorism and terrorists. The shallowness of their argument lies in their statement itself. While terrorists use ideology towards their existence they perpetuate terrorism towards their sustenance, the state agencies of Police, paramilitary agencies and armed forces do not require terrorism for their existence. The police force and armed forces will continue to exist even without the terrorists and hence the phrase "state sponsored terrorism" is a contrived misnomer.

When a reason, religion, or ideology is attributed to terrorists it confers certain amount of legitimacy to their existence and that is what has happened with his statement. While PC made the statement to embarrass the BJP by condemning "Saffron terror", Mamta did exactly the opposite, praising the Maoists to embarrass the left. Maoists have found a patron in Mamta and PC had ploughed a fertile ground for Saffron terror to germinate and flourish by his statement. As long as the politicians continue their perverted game of colouring terrorists, terrorists need not fear them. Until all the politicians call all the terrorists by a single name - "Terrorists", terrorism will continue to haunt a commoner like you and I.

A marketing professional, yet believes in talking only the truth. An optimistic maverick remains a puzzle, puzzling others.
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