Ram Kumar Ohri
The proposed Prevention of Communal and Targeted Violence (Access to Justice & Reparations) Bill is a draconian law that is constitutionally untenable because it aims at taking away from Hindus the Right to Equality before law, an inviolable fundamental right enshrined in Article 15 of the Constitution.
Section 3B of the proposed law mischievously seeks to divide Indian citizens into two groups, labelled as majority and minority. Thereafter, it proceeds to prescribe two different kinds of penal provisions for the two groups, i.e., the majority and the minority, for dealing with incidents of communal violence. The proposed law is based on the insolent presumption that the majority community (read Hindus) is inherently incorrigible and squarely responsible for all incidents of communal violence in India.
It is a cleverly worded insidious law aimed at amending the Constitution by deceit and manipulation. The time has come to re-read the Preamble of the Indian Constitution to the members of the National Advisory Council, most of who appear to be ignoramuses. The Preamble clearly stipulates that the State shall secure to all its citizens:
JUSTICE, social, economic and political;
LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship:
EQUALITY of status and opportunity and to promote among them all;
FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and unity and integrity of the Nation
But the proposed anti-majority legislation aims to divide Indians into two hostile groups, namely the majority and the minority. It expressly deprives Hindus (i.e. the majority community) of the Right to Equality, denies to them Justice, social and economic, and robs them of equality of status. Additionally it violently strips the majority community of the dignity guaranteed to every citizen by the Constitution, as spelt out in the Preamble cited above.
It may be recalled that the Supreme Court had decreed in the Kesvananda Bharati case that the Preamble may be used to interpret ambiguous areas of the Constitution. But the UPA chief’s National Advisory Committee presumes to trample upon the Preamble, nay, even on the Constitution itself!
Furthermore, the Bill aims at destroying “the unity and integrity of the Nation”. It is violative of the statutory mandate enshrined in the Preamble to promote ‘the unity and integrity of the Nation’ to which all laws and actions of the government must conform.
By usurping the jurisdiction of States in the matter of law enforcement, the Bill undermines the federal character of the Indian Union. It empowers the Central Government to dismiss any State government on frivolous grounds, though the Constitution does not permit recourse to such illegal action.
Worldwide, in any penal law the basic component is mens rea, which connotes the intent to commit crime. Across the globe ‘intent’ is accepted as an important component of law for deciding the guilt of any person. But the proposed law is devoid of mens rea and aims at penalising Hindus even though they may not have any intent to harm members of another community, ultra-cleverly defined as “the group”.
It gives the right of veto to the minority community on the subject of communal violence by defining them as ‘the group’ by granting extra-constitutional powers to a seven-member super-outfit called the National Authority for Communal Harmony. This super-outfit comprising four members of minority communities (including the Chairman and the Vice Chairman, both belonging to the minority community) has been assigned the responsibility for directing and overseeing the administration of the proposed vicious legislation.
Interestingly the term ‘group” used in the bill applies only to minority groups (both religious and linguistic). The draft bill does not make even a cosmetic pretence of protecting the so-called majority against violent attacks by members of the ‘group’.
The Bill aims at making the police, including the process of investigation, subservient to the whims of the seven-member National Authority. It is well known that most communal riots cannot be controlled easily by the meagre manpower presently available at a police station or in a district. Worldwide there is a norm of at least 225 policemen for one lakh of population. In India the ratio of police to population ranges between 125 to 150 per one lakh population.
Despite repetitive jihadi attacks across the country and fast-paced spread of communal politics by votebank-besotted politicians, India remains the least and most ineffectively policed country. As against a measly manpower of 15 lakh policemen spread across 35 States and Union Territories, today the number of privately organized security guards stands at nearly 54 lakhs! This shows how, due to sheer political cussedness, the number and scope of private security guards multiplied immensely, while the strength of the police increased minimally. If one adds the poison of ever-present political interference in law enforcement to the muddled situation, one will understand how Police has been marginalised in every State.
The members of the NAC do not know that every riot, especially a communal conflagration, erupts suddenly like a tornado and rips through its trajectory at a furious pace and then tends to slow down mostly by the fourth or fifth day, after reinforcements are mustered and positioned. The NAC ought to know that it takes considerable time to collect additional manpower and procure reinforcements. The Bill aims at penalizing police officers and district magistrates on bogus and trumped-up charge of partiality.
Frankly, no NAC member appears to have the faintest idea of the anatomy and dynamics of riots. Nor are they aware of the ferocious momentum of riots and their un-anticipatable trajectory. They have no idea of the methodology of riot control, much less any clue about the real cause of mischief. None of the NAC members, comprising mostly of free-wheeling non-experts, has any “hands-on” experience of handling a communal riot! Before embarking upon the unconstitutional path chosen by them, they would do well learn a thing or two from the recent London riots which rapidly spread across nearly two dozen cities and could be controlled only when substantial reinforcements were spread across the riot’s trajectory and its furious pace had slowed down on the fourth day!
The Bill rests on the seriously questionable presumption that only the majority community – Hindus – is responsible for all communal riots. The truth, however, is that in India, a majority of communal riots are started by the minority community - and that too on Fridays. A mere glance at the days and dates on which communal riots erupted in various parts of India will confirm that Friday is “rioters’ day out”. For instance, in the first five months of the calendar year 2006 there were 7 communal riots on Fridays, as listed below:
- On Friday, 3 February at Dhar (MP)
- On Friday 10 February at Leh (J&K State, between Muslims and Buddhists)
- On Friday 7 February at Muzaffarnagar (UP)
- On Friday 24 February in Karwan locality of Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh)
- On Friday 3 March in Lucknow (UP)
- On Friday 10 March at Bangalore (Karnataka)
- On Friday 24 April at Thane (Maharashtra) and
This is a random sample and cannot be taken as final proof of the culpability of any community. But it does show the need for an in-depth study of the causes of riots erupting on different days of the week.
The macro picture of Friday rioting shows it is a global phenomenon. Friday rioting was witnessed on a number of Fridays in France, Denmark, Xingjian (China), Egypt, Algeria, Indonesia and Pakistan.
Nearer home, one can see Friday riots erupting in the Kashmir valley regularly, often on flimsy grounds.
It will surprise, indeed shock, ‘the non-elected and non-electable’ members of the NAC that in Xinjiang’ capital, Urumqi, five major mosques located on Southern Jiefang Road were ordered to be closed by local authorities on a Friday in July 2009 because on the previous Sunday a deadly communal riot between the Muslim majority and the Han minority had claimed nearly 200 lives. No wonder, in July 2010, on the anniversary of the 2009 riots, there was massive police deployment, including positioning of 40,000 security cameras across Urumqi, covering 3000 public buses, 200 bus stations and 270 schools, in a desperate bid to prevent outbreak of communal violence. Interestingly, analyst Michelle Malkin even posted an article on her website saying Friday is ‘Death to Infidels Day’.
Sonia Gandhi’s NAC has enough financial resources and manpower to undertake a study of communal riots erupting on all seven days of the week to truthfully assess who starts the violence. If the NAC had cared to unravel the real fount of communal mischief, it would have been shocked to find that the largest number of communal riots erupt on Fridays, after Imams read khutba in mosques.
There is hardly any need to guess what the Imams preach on Fridays. It is faithfully reflected in the acts of senseless rioting by mobsters. But the National Advisory Council dare not undertake such a study because it will irretrievably damage the UPA’s hidden political agenda. So this important study has to undertaken only by a Hindu organization. Unfortunately the leaders of the beleaguered Hindu society are highly deficient in undertaking any in-depth research studies. They did not do it in the case of Sachar Committee, nor did any Hindu care to read Justice Sachar’s fulminations against Hindus. Hindus also woefully lack the courage to call a spade a spade and confront the NAC with the truth - largely due to their obsession with secularism and votebank politics.
My random observation about Friday rioting is based on a casual sample check and is hardly the final word on the subject. But my random sample check does show the path forward for fixing responsibility for communal violence by undertaking a dispassionate study of communal riots on all seven days of the week across India, even across the world. Most police officers and magistrates who have worked in communal riot-prone districts and cities would bear testimony to this experience-based observation. Of course, there will always be some police officers who will lack the moral courage to speak the truth.
In her well researched book, Politics of Communalism, 1989, Zenab Banu presented an analysis of 74 communal riots between 1953 and 1977. She came to the conclusion that nearly 75% of these communal riots were started by Muslims. I suggest that the UPA Chairperson and members of her rag-tag NAC read that seminally well-researched tome.
It is not difficult to gauge NAC’s hidden agenda in drafting such a perverse anti-Hindu law. It is widely believed that NAC was assisted by several known communalists and notorious Hindu-baiters, none of whom possesses rudimentary knowledge of the complex anatomy of a riot, or strategy of riot control. The basic question is what made the NAC wade into the unchartered waters of the communal cauldron? Members of the NAC must come clean on the subject and explain their sinister plan to label the majority community as the fount of all communal mischief.
The proposed arbitrary law is largely perceived by Hindus as another attempt to reduce them to the status of “hewers of wood and drawers of water”, as indeed they were during centuries of oppressive Muslim rule. This dangerous process was cleverly started by the UPA regime after Dr. Manmohan Singh’s obnoxious pronouncement in December 2006 (on Sonia Gandhi’s birthday) that Muslims should have the first claim on national resources.
After that pronouncedly anti-majority (read anti-Hindu) declaration, the UPA started implementing the Sachar Report, a document packed with suppressio veri, suggestio falsi, which relies on willfully doctored data and contains many diatribes against Hindus, including an unwarranted aspersion cast on the teaching of Sanskrit in schools . Going off at a tangent, Justice Sachar trained his guns at the importance given to teaching of Sanskrit in a majority of schools. He pontificates that “the importance given to Sanskrit in the educational framework in Delhi and many north Indian States has tended to sideline minority languages”. He bemoans that students have to opt for Sanskrit as there is no provision to teach Urdu (or say other regional languages) in many schools.
What could be Justice Sachar’s motive in going out of way to find fault with teaching Sanskrit? It is difficult to believe that the retired Chief Justice does not know that Sanskrit is the world’s most ancient language, repository of all Hindu scriptures, and above all, the fountain of India’s glorious heritage and civilisational identity. Yet no Hindu leader, political or spiritual, had the guts to join battle with Sachar over his unwarranted and demeaning diatribe against Sanskrit. And now it transpires that besides pushing Sonia Gandhi’s appeasement agenda, Justice Sachar has earned spurs as an associate of ISI agent Ghulam Nabi Fai, as exposed by his (Fai’s) own American masters!
Suffice it to say that after implementation of the highly discriminatory Sachar Report, the attempt to enact the proposed Prevention of Communal Violence law has the potential to make India into an ‘undeclared’ Islamic State. This Bill authored by a group whose extreme bias against the majority community is manifest to all, deserves to be thrown into the dustbin of the Indian Parliament, else it could well ignite a a prairie fire of communal violence across the land.
1. Source: http://michellemalkin.com /2008/03/21/ if-its-Friday-in-the-Muslim world
2. Sachar Report on the Social, Economic and Educational Status of Indian Muslims, p. 83.
The author is a retd. Inspector General of Police, Arunachal Pradesh