Date: 04 Jan 2008


Title: Outrage in Rampur

Author: Editorial

Publication: The Pioneer

Date: January 3, 2008.


Outrage in Rampur

The Pioneer Edit Desk

India pays the price for UPA's folly

Repeated terrorist strikes in quick succession suggest that Uttar Pradesh is fast emerging as a theatre of jihadi violence in India. What is equally ominous is the gradual spread of jihad's deadly tentacles with the police failing to take pre-emptive action as well as bring the guilty and their associates to book. Following the jihadi strike on the Group Centre of the Central Reserve Police Force at Rampur in the early hours of Tuesday, there is further confirmation that precious little is being done by both Central intelligence agencies and the State police to prevent the heartland from becoming a happy hunting ground for Islamists armed with guns, bombs and their vicious ideology of hate which justifies the cold-blooded murder of innocent people in the name of religion. It is now clear that there is little co-ordination between the Centre and the States on sharing intelligence - New Delhi believes its job is over with passing on intelligence inputs to State Governments; State agencies claim that either the inputs are too vague or reach them too late. Whatever the truth, jihadis are enormously benefited by the mess that prevails; the price for authority's abysmal failure is paid by those who are slaughtered and maimed as well as their families. Of course, all this and more is of little interest to Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, who is rarely seen and even less heard. He owes an explanation as to why the CRPF centre was so poorly protected although it was on the hit list of terrorists. However, it would be unfair to blame the Home Minister alone. For, it is also evident that cynical politics of pandering to crass minorityism is increasingly becoming an obstacle to fight terror; by confusing Muslim sentiments with the diabolical fervour of Islamists, enormous damage is being caused to national security by the UPA Government and the me-too-secular State Governments, especially the regime in Uttar Pradesh.

India is no longer battling a foreign monster, trained and armed by Pakistan. We are now confronted by enemies within who are no less diabolical than those from whom they draw inspiration. If we were to dispassionately look at the Mumbai commuter train bombings, the jihadi attacks in Hyderabad, the blasts at courts in Uttar Pradesh, the terror strikes in Delhi, Ayodhya, Varanasi, Bangalore and now Rampur, it would be clear to all that local terror cells are involved. The ease with which the attacks have been carried out and the felicity with which the attackers and their co-conspirators have escaped detection demonstrate that a vast network has been set up for providing logistical support to the killers and their associates. Yet, there is no visible or declared effort to smash the network and bust the modules simply because politicians are too scared of "hurting Muslim sentiments". This is not to suggest that a crackdown will not fetch a reaction; on the contrary, there are bound to be vociferous protests, especially by the clergy, which sees nothing wrong with the bloodletting in the name of Islam, and the so-called community leaders, who slyly justify murder by citing imaginary grievances. But Government must ignore such protests or else it must prepare to face a fierce blowback. Nobody wants a lily-livered Government running scared of terrorists.