The Pune Police searching the residence of Hany Babu, a teacher of English in Delhi University, related to Bhima Koregaon case is an example of how in the ‘law enforcement’ the police and other intelligence agencies have given power beyond control. We don’t know why Pune Police is determined to ‘develop’ Bhima Koregaon incident into a huge conspiracy when those goons who attacked the people in the street when they were returning from there are roaming free.
Bhima Koregaon is a tribute to the strength of Mahar community in their fight against Peshwas and the memorial was there for long. It is here that Baba Saheb Ambedkar used to visit every 1st January. The Ambedkarite in Maharashtra and from other parts of India would visit this place and celebrate it. There are few things which none can match them. The Dussehra day or October 14th when Baba Saheb Ambedkar with millions of his followers embraced Buddhism so people gather in Nagpur which is one of the biggest congregations. Then we have December 6th when people gather in Chaitya Bhumi in Mumbai where Baba Saheb was cremated and then April 14th, when crores of Bahujan Samaj people celebrate Ambedkar Jayanti.
is who was responsible for Bhima Koregaon violence when it is a well-known
fact that it is an annual function or celebrations which is spontaneous in
nature where a majority of Ambedkarite visits.
right to investigate things but can’t harass people, raiding their homes and
taking away their intellectual wealth. It is sad that despite arrest of people,
there is no formal charge sheet.
world when you have huge digital data, you can get mails from diverse group,
you may be members of discussion groups, some time you don’t follow, you may
receive phone calls from different people many of who you may not even know but
based on these things if the police and agencies create an environment of
intimidation and harassment then it must be stopped.
government has decided to call people terrorists before they could prove it.
The onus lies on the individuals. This is such a mental trauma which only the
individual facing and his or her family know it. It is time for the Supreme
Court to prove its mettle and provide strong guidelines in relation to such
searches by state police in another state. There was a time when it was
difficult for a state police to enter and do the searches in other state but it
seems that it has become a norm.
It is sad
because this is only attempt to stop ideas from flourishing. Courts have
clarified many times that difference of ideas from the state does not amount to
being anti national. If an idea does not promote animosity among communities or
waging a war against the state, it is no crime. Definitely, we all know that
unity and integrity of India is paramount but equally important are the rights
of the people. It is people choice to live together as a nation that we are a
strong nation. It is not the state or power which keep us together, it is our
common values which binds us together. Interestingly, those who are openly
calling for mob lynching, elimination of minorities and their deportation are
roaming free and police does not find any evidence against them even when they
are caught red handed.
and biases among our fellow citizens will not make this country great. It will
flourish only when diverse ideas are allowed to roam and we critique them. It
is not necessary for us to agree on everything. India grew because our founding
fathers realize the immense power of people and strength in its diversity.
Attempt to homogenize thought process, ideologies, eating habits or
culture of this great country, will only be detrimental for the integrity of
the nation. Hope those in power realize that diversity of ideas and culture is
our strength and not our weakness. Academic institutions and academics must
allow questioning and freedom of thoughts so that we have children who can
question wrongs and have the power to speak the truth to the power. But it
seems power is frightened of the independence of thoughts and ideas. Still, we
have no option but to keep uniting and joining hand in our common struggle to
protect our secular liberal constitution and the unity and integrity of the
country from those who want to destroy it by trying to homogenize it.
Vidya Bhushan Rawat
September 12th, 2019
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