Volume - 7 : Issue - 4

Published : Oct. - Dec. 2008

Group : Issues


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By Arun Babani

Terrorism took birth in man's heart quite a long time ago, and today it is evident on every street. A rickshaw will unabashedly brush past you, a mobike guy with jeans and t-shirt will not allow you to cross, a man lying on the road being smelt by a dog will not attract the slightest attention from the 'busy' passers by, a building secretary will be murdered by another committee member because he wanted to be the secretary, a TV producer, on being asked to shut down her show which is morally degrading and nobody is watching it will drag the TV channel to court, a jilted lover will not even blink before killing his ex-girlfriend at point blank! Aren't our mornings spent on brooding over such ghastly information in the newspapers day in and day out? This is terrorism, of an unripe kind, the kind that will ripen in time to kill hundred of thousands of innocent people in broad daylight.

Terrorism is no longer a state subject, or a political matter. It is a human subject, brought about by the moral and ethical downfall of man, by a complete erosion of values in human lives. These young men who we call terrorists were innocent once; born like any other pure and fresh heart. But what they saw around them as they grew up, (Read the captured terrorist's tale) the complete annihilation of values resulting in a barbaric social order made them jump into the war front. Don't blame either the politicians, or police or terrorists, look into your own heart and see whether it beats for corruption, the tiny small daily terrorisms or does it beat with compassion??

This inhuman and brutal social system where a few enjoy five star luxuries and the rest of the billions count pennies has been around too long to go into its roots and emergence. But when you sit, lie and sleep on absolute injustice and corruption for centuries, this is what we deserve. When you consider yourself too busy to think of the jungle society you live in, where everyone is too busy chasing success and money, you sure need a bomb or two to wake you up from you long slumber. Five star Mumbai has been snoring for too long, infact the 5 star hotel room is designed in such a way to make you forget the squalor and poverty of the outside world.

Terrorism is a reality in every street, every building, every society, every nook and corner of the road. And these roads lead ultimately to aggression as violence that we saw in Mumbai. All of us are guilty of breeding aggression and violence, at home, in the workplace, on the roads and all this violence is the stuff terrorism is made of. It is not about RDX and grenades, it is rather about the insults, abuses and hatred in our heart for the next guy. We are the terrorists in embryo waiting to bad mouth or blow up our neighbour, our boss or someone or the other. Nida Fazli has a line, 'Jab kisse se koi gila rakhna, saamne apne aaina rakhna.' (When you blame someone, please hold a mirror in front of you). To wake up others, you need to be awake.

Ultimately a terrorist attack should lead us to ask fundamental questions about life, and its purpose, about why we are here, what is our destiny, our goals, the reason and meaning for taking birth on this extraordinarily beautiful planet. We have forgotten to ask questions and we don't wonder anymore about life and its meaning. Incidents like these seek an explanation and understanding of the phenomenon we call life. Are we here just to make money, watch TV and go to sleep? Well, maybe that is all there is to it, but it is high time we start the journey of discovery, which may ultimately free us from the hatred and fear, our life long companions and bring us face to face with life, an encounter with the mystery that is us, ourselves.