Saturday, February 22, 2014

The bounds of decency

It is clear that the Tamil political leadership believes (driven by electoral compulsions) that the LTTE gangsters responsible for the death of Rajiv Gandhi are innocent and should be set free. It is also clear that given the nature of coalition politics (now and in the future) gangsters can always bank on regional identity to protect them- be it a Sikh or a Tamil or whatever. Kashmiris like Afzal Guru have not been so lucky.

Incidentally this is the same claim of normalization/vindication for Narendra Modi (who in my book is much more obnoxious for having used the powers of the state to terrorize people). The electoral victories that the people of Gujarat have bestowed on him carry more authority that any number of court verdicts.

Hear is Harithra, daughter of Nalini and Murugan who is making the case for the release of all the gangsters

In yet another emotive appeal to AICC president Sonia Gandhi and her children, Rahul and Priyanka, Harithra, the 22-year-old daughter of Nalini and Murugan, convicted in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, has sought the release of her father. If they helped to get back her father, they would be hailed as saviours, she said.....The recent letters were written in the wake of the Supreme Court order commuting the death sentence of the three convicts, Murugan, Santhan and Perarivalan, the subsequent decision of Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa to release them, and the apex court's move to stay their release. Harithra said her parents have been behind the bars ever since she knew about them. "When I was mature enough to understand the world around me, I've heard people talking about the heinous assassination of Mr Rajiv Gandhi. Now I truly understand that the incident is one of the most tragic and devastating moments of Indian history," she said.                                                                                                                                                                           It seems no one cares for the bombing victims who were also Tamils.                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
                                                                  

“Where is the justice for the bereaved families after all these years,” asked S. Abbas, who lost his mother Shanthini Begum in the Sriperumbudur blasts. Of the 15 other victims of the blast, five were Congress workers while and 10 were policemen, including nine from the State force.....“We are not advocating death penalty but we want those convicted by the highest court of carrying out a heinous act to undergo the punishment meted out by the court. They cannot be allowed to walk scot free,” said ‘League’ M. Mohan, whose Congressman father ‘League’ P. Munusamy was one of the victims.
                                                                                                                                                                    I am anti- death penalty and applaud the Supreme Court decision for rescinding the same but I worry about what broader message that this campaign is sending. In the future the only form of retributive justice that will be available will be mob justice (while the petty politicians will plead ignorance and innocence).                                                                                                                                                                   regards