June 17th, 2004 02:37 PM
A welcome to arms - India
By: Dilip Raote
April 9, 2004
Indians must demand the constitutional right to own and carry guns. Crooks, thugs, hoods, dons and other well-connected people can easily acquire guns. But a citizen who is at the mercy of these monsters cannot. This discrimination is thoroughly undemocratic.
Crooks, thugs, hoods, dons and other well-connected people can get away with anything — murder, rape, loot, theft of property, abduction of women and children. To victims or grieving relatives they say, “Go to court.” And they laugh as they say it. Essentially, these monsters are saying that law-and-order is a joke and it is we who invented it, ha ha ha.
Satyendra Dubey, whose murder made international news, is a joke. The investigation into his murder is a joke. The shock and anger expressed by the Indian people are also jokes. These jokes make the goons who committed the crime laugh.
Thousands of non-influential citizens like Dubey are killed or pushed towards death every year. A few make one-day news; others don’t even get a two-line obituary notice.
India’s major media networks are urban. They cover only urban crime. The struggles of the people in the hinterlands are shrugged off as ‘survival of the fittest’ competition. In the hinterlands only the goons are the fittest. Their crimes are not even recorded by the police. The victim swallows his loss, grief and pride. If he complains he will suffer greater loss and humiliation.
There’s nothing new in what I had said so far. All Indians, except those who’ve mastered the art of manipulating the system, now accept that India is a thoroughly corrupt thug-land. There are official and unofficial thugs, and it is difficult to determine which lot is more dangerous.
So jobless youngsters are joining gangs or political parties to acquire social importance and survival skills. They learn from the grassroots level how money and connections can be utilised.
Naturally, security agencies are thriving across the country. Housing complexes, business enterprises, families and almost everything else are being guarded by private security agencies. There is total loss of confidence in the policing system. In Mumbai, at least, the cops look human; elsewhere, they resemble vampires.
Security technologies businesses are also booming. Hidden cameras, complex monitoring systems, electrical fences, hi-tech watch-towers, metal grills on windows and balconies are now incorporated into the plans of all public and private buildings.
And there are the growing numbers of self-defence courses which are attracting women. Women must not only know how to earn, cook, keep house and rear children; they must also know how to defend themselves. Karate or judo classes have been added to their heavy schedule. Because in this Ram Rajya, Ravans laugh and say, “Go to court.”
But security systems can be penetrated by determined goons, as shown by the growing numbers of robberies and murders in secure apartment complexes. The dead are usually those too old or too young to learn fighting skills.
Besides, karate and judo can help only in close combat. They are useless if the victim is targeted by a gun from a distance. The number of guns in supply is increasing to keep pace with the goon population. It is time ordinary Indian citizens demanded the right to carry a gun.
Indians should look up to the founding fathers of America who granted to the American people the right to carry weapons. Their fear was that if only the state was armed, it could become ruthlessly oppressive. The people must have the weapons to fight back. This American idea is worth importing.
Indians must demand the right to carry weapons to protect themselves, since the state can’t do it or chooses not to do it.
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