…the violence and vandalism that were married to politics with birth of Shiv Sena some 40 years ago actually flourished during regime of Congress and, to some extent, BJP. They’re united on this and appease each-other during other’s regime. With civil society being tolerant of all this, no political parties can be expected to stop political violence…
The recent attack on IBN-Lokmat offices in Mumbai and Pune has to be seen fresh perspective. The continued assaults on media organizations and strategic use of vandalism in politics is nothing new, for that matter. What is unique to this latest violent political venture is that it took Shiv Sainiks a total of four days to feel offended by channel’s criticism of their party supremo Bal Thackeray on his remarks against cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. Ironically, Shiv Sena is still capable of treating it to be ‘an emotional and spontaneous’ outburst of Sainiks rather than a ‘well-planned exercise’. It seems to us Sainiks didn’t get into frenzy on losing their minds, but their leaders have really lost theirs to expect us to believe their theory. Well, they can. They can indulge in violence and come out with such explanations, for there’re reasons. The ruling Congress party and their ally BJP have been unduly lenient to them for reasons well known to them. A Shiv Sainik or an MNS activist or a Bajrangdal or VHP worker can dare resort to hooliganism only if he feels assured of getting away with actions. Politicians as well civil society have, by their inaction, given them this assurance.
So, all the protest or criticism of Shiv Sena is of no consequence. What we saw following slapping of SP MLA Abu Asim Azmi in Maharashtra Assembly tellingly shows that more such incidents of violence are to come, for various parties treated the event lightly and favoured forgiving the errant legislatures. To be very frank, the violence and vandalism that were married to politics with birth of Shiv Sena some 40 years ago actually flourished during regime of Congress and, to some extent, BJP. They’re equally to be blamed for this. Moreover, party members of Congress, BJP, CPM, or other national parties have been time and again found involved in hooliganism to concede something a political colour. Simply, with civil society being tolerant of all this, no political parties can be expected to stop political violence. Conversely, they’re united on this and appease each-other during other’s regime. This will come to a draw only after this mutual appeasement stops and culprits, after every attack they make, are brought to book.
Media should lead the civil society in doing so and for this media needs unity. It can be ensured if media form a network all over the country and bring goons to book. Create awareness among people and form a pressure group. Press for enquiries of such incidences by CBI, for state police cannot be expected to act tough on local politicians. There’re courts in the country, too, for PILs. And start this from this latest incidence.