Why Delhi 10/29 should react like London 7/7

Date: 11/22/2005


http://www.expressindia.com/fullstory.php?newsid=57545/// Why Delhi 10/29 should react like London 7/7/// By C Uday Bhaskar /// New Delhi, which has already been scarred by the Parliament attack in December 2001, joins the list of major capitals and cities that have been targeted in recent months by the elusive perpetrators of such determined terrorist attacks who deliberately kill innocent people—enthusiastic shoppers being the softest of soft targets. /// The question that has been asked repeatedly since the news first broke is the identity of those behind the Delhi blasts. While there is intense speculation, one must not jump to hasty, emotional conclusions till the investigations are completed. However, recalling some of the tenets and truisms of the post 9-11 security experience are useful. /// Symbolism is an important element of terrorist attacks and clearly the capital of secular India has a particular salience. The message that appears to be embedded in the death and destruction strewn in Sarojini Nagar and Paharganj is that no major urban centre with the kind of demographic density that South Asia has can be immune to such attacks. /// The intent of such attacks in urban centres is to generate mass panic and disrupt the rhythms of normalcy that are robust in such places. Hence, the primary response should be to provide relief and succour to those who have been directly affected and to simultaneously ensure that the city of Delhi and its citizens pick up the rhythms of normal civic life./// One hopes that Sunday will see the demonstration of such will in the Capital—as London demonstrated a few months ago. The context of Saturday’s attacks also merit scrutiny. The earthquake of October 8 is barely three weeks old and there has been a surge of compassion that has been generated on both sides of the Line of Control. Yet the terrorist groups carried out a series of attacks despite this natural calamity and assassinated J&K Minister Lone amongst others. /// Thus, the intent of those behind the attack in Delhi may be to sow discord at a time when the citizens of Delhi and India are preparing for both Diwali and the Id that follows. Terrorism in its current avatar will not be eliminated totally in the near future, but, it can be blunted so that it cannot claim the success it seeks—which is to damage the societal ozone layer in a plural society. /// The investigating agencies should be assisted by civil society as a whole to identify those behind this attack and brought to book at the earliest. Delhi’s response to Saturday’s dastardly attacks should be that they will not be intimidated by such acts and both Diwali and Id will be celebrated—albeit in a muted manner with some thought for those who have been directly affected by the earthquake and the wanton acts of terror. /// (Bhaskar is deputy director, Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi)/// ===================================/// DELHI CANNOT REACT LIKE LONDON BECAUSE DELHI IS IN THE TIGHT GRIP OF ISLAM UNDER PRESIDENT ABDUL KALAM, WHO IS A PAKISTANI BY DEFINITION (ACT OF PARTITION OF INDIA, 1947). /// -------------------000000000