Indian armed forces ambushed and killed 17 coal miners in Nagaland Mon’s district. An official report stated the killings as a case of mistaken identity during a counter-insurgency operation. The Home Minister of India, Mr. Amit Shah described it as an unfortunate incident, while the Chief Minister of Nagaland offered his condolences to the bereaved families and assured justice according to the law of the land. What do the inhumane extra judicial killings of civilians followed by apologies tell us about the state of India democracy?
In the times to come lynching, political assassination, massacre at the borders will be how lessons on Indian Hindu Nationalism will be taught. Everyone who writes, speaks and exposes the fascistic design of the far-right Hindu Nationalist camp will be vilified as terrorist, and demonized as anti-national. Military strikes at the border will be increasingly conducted, upon which the orgy of patriotism will be enacted persistently. The fate of Kashmir and Manipur will be decided around the conference tables in Delhi. People’s movement will not be televised, it will be curfewed and militarized. Parliament will become a shelter of hate-speech. The language of killing and lynching will enter the everyday execution of Hindu democracy, and words like freedom will disappear from our vocabulary. In the meanwhile more Burhan Wani, more Gauri Lankesh will meet the tragic bullet’s end.
What worries concerned citizens of the state is not that the fact that the police arrested the agitating students and the teachers named in the FIR (FIR number: 223(9) 2018). But the manner and the modus operandi of the state in effecting those arrests. There are a number of laws and legislation at the state’s disposal to establish its actions as rational. One can get easily lost in the maze of the State’s bureaucratic jargon and proceduralism. Even if the state could argue that it was authorized to use necessary force to effect the arrest of the accused students and teachers according to section 46 of the Criminal procedure code; measures such as firing tear gas and rubber bullets at students will only add fuel to the fire. It is a standard counterinsurgency policing practice in an insurgency-torn state like Manipur to launch operations in the wee hours of the day to utilize the element of surprise. The midnight Blitzkrieg at Manipur University which uses this same logic points to more disturbing trends. The incident has become a lesson in how not to tackle student unrest.
One needs to constantly remind oneself of the impossibility of extrapolation especially when using few stories to stand in for the whole. For example, the reading of ‘Meitei women’ as ‘unique as they are deeply concerned about the society they live in and are involved in various social organizations,’ or ‘This little girl grew up, got married and like most Meitei women, got actively involved in social work.’ is remarkable in its lack of nuance and (mis) reading the parts for the whole.
After Irom Sharmila’s humiliating defeat in the recently concluded Manipur Assembly Elections, where she got only 90 votes, social media was filled with concerned citizens and activists going berserk, talking about how poorly this defeat reflected upon the new political culture of India. The idealism and politics of Irom Sharmila was put on a pedestal to an extent that people sitting far away from the rough and tumble of Manipur’s politics saw themselves as capable of pronouncing judgement upon the morality of the people of Manipur.
We are a group of research Scholars, students, NGO founders and members, and concerned citizens who are appalled by the way the way the government is handling the Kashmir issue.
We would like to sent out a solidarity message to the people of Kashmir
Nobody would have any doubt whatsoever now that Sharmila is extraordinary. She has that madness in her that few are gifted with. By madness we of course do not mean insanity. Instead we mean in the sense that Zorba the Greek meant it when he said, “In life we need some madness, otherwise we will never have the courage to cut the rope and be free.” Sharmila’s decision to go on an indefinite hunger strike, her perseverance despite persuasions by many to end it, and now her decision to call it off and join politics, all say this loudly. This madness notwithstanding, let everybody be reminded nobody is infallible.
Happy Independence Day India
May your flag flutter freely in the air
Like freely falling warm drops of tear
On a child’s cheek who lost his father
In your soldier’s bullets
For he was born in Kashmir.
AFSPA, why don’t you go fuck yourself?
Don’t you have brothers?
Don’t you have commanders?
Don’t you have captain?
Why don’t you go fuck them all?
Why don’t you go Kill them all?
” Are you from Imphal?”
” Still you run for Irom Sharmila?”
Assam Rifles, the oldest paramilitary force of the Indian government established in 1835, has set up its first women contingent. The 181-year-old paramilitary force inducted 100 women officers within its fold after they successfully completed a year-long training programme. However, the said development has taken place at a time when there has been little progress in the case of Thangjam Manorama.
The #AFSPA adventures of #StickBoy in GaroHills
In a recent Order of the High Court of Meghalaya dated 2.11.2015 has made a suo motu suggestion to the Central Government for the imposition of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, in the Garo Hills area of Meghalaya. It is shocking and deeply disturbing that a draconian law like the AFSPA is being sought to be imposed through a judicial order.
On 16th November 2015, I went to take part in the protest march called by the Garo Students’ Union (GSU), Thma U Rangli-Juki (TUR), CSWO along with a few other activists from Meghalaya. I went not because I was instructed to by ‘party high-command’, not because I was threatened or coerced by anyone…
While state seems in no mood to repeal bloody AFSPA and continue oppression on people by killing dissident voices with impunity, people are bound to revolt. A continuous humiliation and torture of people living under AFSPA is just unbearable. This colonial rule and bloody thrust of power and resources must end.