Mob Lynching

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 29 Jul 2018 11:26:42


 

Beating up people to death just on the basis of rumours or ideological differences is a deeply regressive, sick and pervert mentality. Violence on any pretext is condemnable and primitive— more so when it is inflicted upon helpless, innocent and weak people.


India is known for being a unique culture that knows to assimilate and accommodate diverse views and myriad traditions in a spirit of camaraderie and unity of humanity. Never had India been acerbic or unwelcoming to foreigners or people of different social systems or creeds just because they were different.


IS INDIA becoming a capital of mob violence? Mob lynching in the country has taken ominous promotions in the last few years. This is being condemned far and wide and people in several quarters are no longer feeling safe in their own country.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Whether it is related to transportation of cows or on rumours surrounding child-lifting, any excuse is coming in handy for the perpetrators of such street violence to justify their crime. This reflects poorly on governance and administration and also hits the country’s global image.
The complicity and/or inaction of the police further escalate the seriousness of the situation. Such unprovoked and incendiary lynching and violence will certainly do its bit to keep investors and tourists away.


Prompt police action would have certainly intimidated these antisocial groups but as long as they know that they would go unscathed despite their crime, they have no one to tame their violent propensities, nor do they care to temper their audacity. They almost get a free hand and a legitimate authority to unleash their violence on people or things they don’t like since they perceive a tacit support from the police.


Beating up people to death just on the basis of rumours or ideological differences is a deeply regressive, sick and pervert mentality. Violence on any pretext is condemnable and primitive— more so when it is inflicted upon helpless, innocent and weak people targeting their religious or personal beliefs.


India is known for being a unique culture that knows to assimilate and accommodate diverse views and myriad traditions in a spirit of camaraderie and unity of humanity. Never had India been acerbic or unwelcoming to foreigners or people of different social systems or creeds just because they were different.


India has long evolved a culture through centuries of understanding, wisdom and practice to give space to the ‘other’ and enrich her own society and values through liberal cultural give and take. This is why India has seen an amalgamation of religions and cultures in a way that is seen nowhere in the world.


We are a very cosmopolitan, diversified and egalitarian society but for the pernicious designs of some fringe elements who try to tarnish and damage this fabric of society. Call it the dominance of spirituality in the Indian psyche or her peculiar weather and topography, Indians are genetically tuned for being a peace-loving, assimilative and genial people, who avoid conflicts and make everyone their own.


Had Indians been so inimical to outside influences, the Mughals would never have been able to make the country their home. The continuance of the Indian civilization for 5000 years itself is the best testimony to our accommodative spirit. In such a friendly and familial country, where thousands of gods and goddesses are worshipped with freedom, aberrations like mob lynching are not only hurtful but also shocking for the majority of us who have grown in an amicable atmosphere much different from what we are seeing today. The dominant social discourse of peace, harmony and coexistence is being hijacked by a motivated and vested group of hooligans. There is every right to dissent or object to the ways of others if they vitiate the social space. There may even be a valid reason at times to oppose something or stand in its way if that portends some public danger. But no one has the right to take law in his hands.


No one has the right to teach right or wrong to anyone with violence and intimidation. There is a way to live in a civilised society and no civilised society can admit and allow violence as a means to set things right.
Our society is large, diverse and intricate. Wrong and right in any case is a matter of subjective taste and appreciation which cannot be imposed on anyone, that too with violence. My right may not be the other person’s right. He may hold a different perspective, which also may have reasons to be held right.


We have to give him space too and accept his viewpoint too. That is the way society progresses. Society needs to have space for divergent views. It must have space for dialogue and civilised communication to solve deadlocks. Beating and killing are primitive and brutal ways suited in animalistic setups.


If opposite voices are not heard, we will end up being Taliban or Communists of China or other such bigot nations that hold religion supreme and trample anyone not adhering to the state belief/ideology.


India’s pride and the asset has been her divergence and multiplicity. Any attempt at uniformity will rob her of her essence. No country or civilisation has ever become great by castigating or trouncing upon the rights or beliefs of marginalised or other minority groups. Everyone in some way or the other contributes to nation building and it is the plurality that makes a nation interesting and fecund.


Cutting everyone to the same size to suit nationalistic conveniences is a dangerous trend that needs to be nipped in the bud. This is no social work the vigilantes are doing. They are ruining the basic unifying forces of harmony and dividing people by playing up their differences rather than celebrating their similarities.


There are millions of social evils and ills, rituals and superstitions we ourselves promote, support or allow around us but never raise a finger, basically because we are a part of those and we unconditionally hold them right. But as soon as if get even a whiff of any wrongdoing by others, especially those not belonging to our communities, we run berserk in frenzy.


We don’t think objectively but measure everything by our yardsticks of morality and ethics. We take a moral high ground and look down upon everything that doesn’t seem to measure up to our parameters. This parochial approach is only going to constrict things and make our society claustrophobic and decadent where every spoken and written word and every action has to be weighed in the light of what the dogmatic fringe elements would think of them.


Those not approved by the dimwits have to be dumped. The Government has done well to seek restrictions from WhatsApp to
stem rumour mongering, but that is certainly not enough. Rumour can rise from anywhere and then, it is not always a rumour that is killing people. There have also been occasions of pre-planned and organised lynching rising out of ideological differences.


The Government has to strengthen the police and issue strict orders to them not to spare anyone involved in mob activities of violence. It is always easy to be a part of the mob because the mob has no face. This is also the reason for the difficulty of the police to take immediate action because locating individuals in the mob is tough.