Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Politics of Clemency

Why is there so much furore over the hanging of Mohd. Afzal, a criminal condemned of masterminding the attack on the Indian parliament - the very symbol of Indian democracy?? Now let's find out a few things about this "innocent" soul who according to many was just at the wrong place in the wrong time. Wikipedia describes Afzal as :

Mohammad Afzal is a Kashmiri accused and convicted of conspiracy to storm the Indian parliament in December 2001. In 2004, he was sentenced to death by the Supreme Court of India. The sentence was to be carried out on 20 October, 2006. The sentance is now stayed, after his family filed a mercy petition to the the President.

So if the whole world considers him as a criminal who had the courage to mastermind the attacks, why is he given so much importance all of a sudden?? Why are so many news channels and newspapers taking pains to publish stories against his hanging?? India being a democratic country gives the right to each person to plead for clemency upon sentence of capital punishment.

But here we have a TERRORIST, who planned a attack that led to the death of :

One gunman, wearing a suicide vest, was shot dead, the vest exploding. The other four gunmen were also killed. Five policemen, a Parliament security guard, and a gardener were killed, and 18 others were injured. No members of the government were hurt.

He caused so many deaths and now we have a former CM of J&K ( Mr Farooq Abdulla) saying that the whole country will go up in flames if he's to be hanged, that the judges who convicted him will not live long. This is an open threat from a person who ruled Kashmir for so many years. This shows the level to which a politician will stoop just for gaining political mileage out of such a gruesome act. Who cares how many policemen, military and para-military force members laid down their lives to protect the symbol of democracy that is the Parliament of India.

What was the purpose of this daring terror? If the Parliament were symbolic of the national pride and personality it was an attack on both. If the Parliament were symbolic of democracy, it was crime against democracy. If the seculars would regard the Parliament as a symbol of secularism Afzal attempted to wipe out that very icon of secularism. If the Parliament represented freedom and the rule of law in India he exerted to snuff both. This attack nearly brought India to war with Pakistan in the year 2002, a week after the attack, India mobilised and deployed its troops to Kashmir and Punjab in what was India's largest military mobilization since the 1971 Indo-Pakistani War amid calls from the United States and the United Nations (UN) on India to exercise restraint. If the politicians were serious then, what happened all of a sudden now?????

Now if one were to examine the grounds on which the clemency is demanded, the 1st arguement from his wife is: He wasn’t given a fair trial. He wasnt given a good lawyer. His confession was forced.

Well even if he's innocent as his wife and other supporters say, then why hasn't he opened his mouth even once saying that he didn't have any hand in the attack. Now about the part that he was beaten into his confession, still he's not eligible for clemency as the only violation here can be Human right's violation to a prisoner under custody. But no one's mentioning about that!

Now on the arguement that there would be widespread violence in Kashmir if he's hanged; well that remains to be seen and what any Indian citizen should do at this moment is support the judiciary for taking such swift action on a case that is of such national importance. We should support the justice system and not the dreaded criminals who will be rescued by another hijack like that of IC-814 which shouldn't be allowed in the future and repition of IC-814 is a well founded fear and I think the then governement did a big mistake succumbing to the terrorists demands.

If Afzal were to be given clemency, it would only mean a moral victory to the terrorists, frankly speaking taking away the life of a convicted-terrorist, is a much better alternative than, spending the hard-earned money of the Indian taxpayer, on life-time maintenance of such a terrorist. This is reason enough and exact justification for hanging Afzal. If the politicians can successfully get clemency to Afzal, then it is assured that Terrorism is bound to rise to greater heights and trouble all of mankind.

The family of Kamlesh Kumari, a CRPF Jawan who died in the attack has said that they will return the Ashok Chakra awarded to her, if the president accepts the petition. This the last thing that should happen to India. This would demoralise the million's of troops who secure the borders of our nation and are ready to lay their lives for the safety of each and every Indian. The government should never consider the clemency petition and should set an example to each and every budding terrorist that he wouldn't be allowed to walk away with a few years in jail to come out and commit another heinous attack.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

N Korea Joins the Nuke Club

On monday the North Korean news agencies announced that N Korea had become the 8th nation in the world which had Nuclear weapon launch capability sending panic waves across the world. It didn't come as surprise when all nations came up against the tests and condemed the action of the dictatorial N Korean regime. This was particularly clear in the stand taken by the US and Japanese administration. President Bush called the North Korean test “a threat to international peace and security” and condemned it as a “provocative act.” But Russia and China, which have veto power and have consistently opposed tough sanctions, did not signal that they were ready to go along with the American proposal. Britain, France and Japan said they were also pressing for strong sanctions, which the Security Council is expected to debate in the coming days.

Site of the N Korean Nuke test

But then it's a shame that these warnings come from a nation that has conducted more tests than the rest of the world, and was the first and only country to use a nuclear weapon in wartime. The U.S. has signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, but it has not yet been ratified by the Senate. The total tests by the USA come to a whopping 1,030 of which 815 were underground. They have had tests in any and every possible situation and now it is the strongest opposer to nations conducting nuke tests. Take the case of the Pokharan Tests in 1998, India had to get over a huge number of economic and scientific sanctions and it was kind of making the whole nation feel that these tests were unwanted and India shouldn't have carried them out. But then why shouldn't a nation that fully understands the dangers of using nukes, cause the only example of the destructive power of such weapons was demonstrated by the USA in the 2nd World War. This policy of the US is a effort to extend their own hegemony over the world as a whole.

I am not saying that N Korea is the leader when it comes to world peace, but then why condemn a nation when it develops nuke capacity??? I think the method of imposing sanctions will only isolate N Korea and make them feel that the whole world is up in arms against them and actually this might be the PROVOCATIVE action that Mr Bush was saying about.

Coming to think about the proliferation of nuclear weapons once N Korea becomes a nuclear power, there is reliable proof which says that China is helping Pakistan with its nuclear efforts. But then not a single nation condemns them, why this BIAS when it comes to smaller nations???? Or is it because half of the hardware that US needs comes from China?????? Now the US has close to 12,000 warheads which are capable of destroying the world a 1000 times over, but no one has a voice against the limitation of arms. The policies followed by the US govt across the world are the root cause of all troubles in the world. They were the one's who gave arms to the Taliban in the 80's and are suffering now from their own weapons. I think it's high time that the world community stands up and takes notice of all the bullshit that US is spreading the world over. First the US should stop all the atrocities that they are doing the world over and then start preaching peace to the world