Fake Encounters - The Real Truth
While cruising on the modern highway from Bangalore to Chennai, the Speedometer of the BMW 7 series was oscillating between 120 and 150 kmph. I was sitting along with my MD in the back seat, the car was speeding along Vaniyambadi sector, and my thoughts were faster than the car.
During the 80s, Vaniyambadi and Ambur sector were infested with naxalites supported by PWG of Andhra, created havoc in that region. MGR was then the chief minister, enjoying unquestionable authority, over the affairs of Tamil Nadu. He had at his disposal some of the finest Police Officers and one of them was Waltair Devavaram.
The task of eradicating the naxalite menace was delegated to Devavaram; he was made accountable only for the results and not the means. Equipped with the support of the highest authority in Tamil Nadu, Devavaram went about is task meticulously.
During that time, I remember to have read many news items, on encounters in that region, which had small hillocks. So many persons had lost their lives in encounters and yet no human rights activist, no social conscious scribe, no sting operator questioned the veracity of the encounters. It was understandable for two reasons. MGR was a tall leader with unquestionable authority and he had carefully cultivated an image of a leader for poor, common man, working class and oppressed. Because of his carefully constructed image over decades, others could not steal it from him. Secondly it was not as lucrative as it is today for people to stand up and gain.
What Devavaram did was simple. He had broken the support base for the naxalites, by cutting the supply line. His operation had instilled fear among the locals to extend support to the naxalites- the placenta, from which the demonic embryo draws its nutrition. Had it not been for his deft handling of the menace, I doubt whether the highways would have become a reality now. The highways and other developments had contributed more growth for the local populace, than the empty promises of naxalites. Naxalites promise to eradicate an evil - social disparity and poverty, on which they survive.
My thoughts wandered to 90's, especially 1996. In Coimbatore there was a sensitive area, which continues to be one now. A loop road, connecting two arterial roads bounded on one side with a lake, thickly populated with narrow alleys, was feared for long as a sensitive area. When Jayalalitha was the chief minister she had created police check posts on both the entry points to this area and all vehicles were thoroughly checked. In 1996 assembly elections DMK led by Karunanidhi, played vote bank politics and harped on the check posts. He had promised to remove the check posts immediately on winning elections.
And the check posts were removed even as the results were trickling down, indicating a massive victory for DMK. This happened in the year 1996. On 14th February 1998, Coimbatore was crippled by serial bomb blasts and it had taken a decade for Coimbatore to recover.
Huge cache of arms and ammunition were recovered from the very area, the movement into which was monitored by Jayalalitha's government. In the name of communal amity and vote bank politics, Karunanidhi ensured free flow of materials into this area, destructive materials included. After the bomb blasts, which claimed many lives instantly and delayed the recovery of local economy for long, the organisation Al-Umma was banned. "Locking the stable after the horses have gone".
It has become fashionable for many to shout from roof top, any encounter as fake, casting doubts on the police force, notwithstanding the corpse of a cop, as we have seen recently in Delhi.
An encounter, whether fake or real is painful, however passing a judgement on it sitting comfortably is not that difficult. All one has to do is to see the names of the people who have been killed in an encounter and pass the judgement. IT IS FAKE. Don't bother about the reasons behind the judgement. There are so many channels, news papers and social activists to doctor one for the gullible.
Fake Encounters - The Real Truth
- » Published on September 28, 2008
- » Type: Opinion
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