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Mr. Arvind Kejriwal, Mob Justice Is Not Social Justice And Capital Punishment Makes Killers Of Us All!

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By Akhil Kumar:

Arvind kejriwal has emerged as a Demigod to the helpless victims of corruption and a messiah of the great Indian middle class. His rise to power was unprecedented and his fans heaved a sigh of collective (almost orgasm-ish) relief as he assumed the position of CM in Delhi. With his grand Obama moment of hope and change, he set out to please the aam janta of Delhi. This city has been an ‘anarchic’ madhouse ever since.

Kejriwal Arvind

With AAP’s vigilante style of justice and populist (and superficial) quick fixes to all that’s wrong with the system, they have been desperately trying to brand themselves as the superheroes of Indian politics. Kejriwal and Co. are running around with rolls of duct tape to patch all the holes in the system, and those who voted for them with the hope of revolutionary changes in the archaic pre established order feel betrayed. This is not what they asked for, and their disillusionment is becoming evident with every passing day.

The Aam Aadmi Party has it’s fingers on the pulse of the society that we inhabit and they intend to ride on popular sentiment rather than challenging the regressive common sense of our society. They are like the prejudiced grandparents of most middle class families, as is evident from the ‘commando force’ idea of ‘protecting’ women and finding cultural value in Khap panchayats. The voters of Delhi were duped by this merry band of misfits high on political adventurism. A consistent political ideology with the clear vision of an egalitarian society based on the principles of social justice is the way forward. Not an amalgamation of left, right and center. Being devoid of a consistent political ideology and vision is the most dangerous trend in administration.

The recent racist attacks on African nationals by local residents of Khirki extension in Delhi, led by the Delhi law minister Somnath Bharti was proof enough of the extent to which such political misadventure can damage the social fabric of our society. Mob justice is not social justice, and that’s what the AAP needs to realize if they are to continue with their ‘post-ideology’ escapades. We have to realize the simple truth that our societal common sense is very regressive and we can not allow the government to perpetuate mob justice for voter appeasement or electoral brownie points. The government should challenge the common sense of the society and aim to create awareness and sensitization, not validate mob rule and xenophobia by participating in them.

What led me to write this article, though, was a news report that I read last night. It was in relation to the recent attack on Nido Tania, a student from Arunachal Pradesh who was brutally beaten up in Delhi and succumbed to the injuries. Arvind Kejriwal has made a statement that ‘the guilty must be hanged’. At a time when the whole world is shifting away from capital punishment, our ‘revolutionary’ leader seems to be baying for blood. The final nail in the coffin of whatever little hope I had from him was his scant regard for human life. I have been actively involved with the ‘Justice for Nido Tania’ campaign and I can feel the anger and helplessness of the people from North East, but I differ from this megalomaniac of a CM. I was and will always be against capital punishment, be it for anyone. Mob justice and societal common sense won’t lead us to a progressive society, we have to challenge the common sense and uphold the ideals of social justice (Which the death penalty makes a mockery of). The CM of Delhi has again played the popular sentiment card and has confirmed my belief that it is not an alternative but an offshoot of the same mainstream opportunistic politics. I can go on in length about why I oppose the death penalty but I think this brief statement by Amnesty International about the same sums up much of my argument: ‘The death penalty legitimizes an irreversible act of violence by the state and will inevitably claim innocent victims. As long as human justice remains fallible, the risk of executing the innocent can never be eliminated.’

It is ironic that the same Arvind Kejriwal is pro AFSPA and also addresses the dharna sympathising with the North East community. Either he is a cunning and opportunistic politician, carefully trying to strike a balance between his ‘nationalistic’ voters and also projecting himself as a champion of social justice, or he is downright stupid! If one death in the heart of the capital has moved him so much, why is he pretending to be blind to the daily atrocities on the same community by the defense forces under AFSPA. He joined the protest staged by the North Eastern people at Jantar Mantar but chooses to forget the echoes from the protest in Manipur after Thangjam Manorama’s bullet ridden body was discovered? He will ensure justice for a young student from the North East but will remain blind to the impunity with which the Armed Forces suppresses his relatives and friends? Around 30 middle-aged women walked naked through Imphal to the Assam Rifles headquarters, shouting: “Indian Army, rape us too… We are all Manorama’s mothers.” I hope someone reminds him of that while he is at the protest. I hope people demand answers from him and call out his hypocrisy of pretending to be a well wisher of the North Eastern community and pro AFSPA at the same time!

This again reminds us how crucial it is to repeal AFSPA from the country to stop such racial attacks. It is AFSPA that creates a sense of ‘othering‘ of communities, it creates a common sense in the mainland that they are different from us and need to be ‘shown their place’. That they don’t deserve their basic civil liberties and should be suppressed and bullied. Arvind Kejriwal should make his stand clear to the people who he he claims to stand with, he should clearly say it out loud that ‘I will ensure justice for Nido Tania but sorry for all the other Nido’s in Kashmir and the North eastern states, I just can’t get over my love for AFSPA!’  What’s even more disheartening is to see the ‘intellectual’ spin doctors in AAP and their love for selective ‘justice’! How the people who were known to uphold ideals of social justice are now trying to validate xenophobic, racist and regressive politics.

I will conclude with a quote by James Baldwin: “History is not a procession of illustrious people. It’s about what happens to a people. Millions of anonymous people is what history is about.” AAP has to choose which side of history it will be on.


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  1. Saem hashmi

    The no-ideology concept is one of the most lethal form of politics that makes the representative more of a anarchic ruler and the mobocracy is perhaps one of the worst kind of ruling ideology. What AAP at a larger scenario has done is that it has proved to be an Achilles heel for hopes of any new party and gas proved a image rectifier to the fact that the prevaipent old parties are the most liable instirtues to govern India inspire with flaws they have. Kejriwal has proven himself as a hypocrite and dictating ruler runing amock like a firing machine gun.

  2. Ana kandwal

    I had hopes from Arvind kejriwal just like everyone else as he seemed to be the only ‘reasoning’ person who showed himself to be liberal, whose thoughts were based on collective justice but after watching his take on Kashmir issue or on AFSPA, it seems like he is the most dangerous person in disguise of a ‘Nayak’. It is disappointing. And yes nowhere hanging the culprit would bring justice to the victim, death for death in d name of justice is an ideology that satisfies sick minds.
    A very well written article. Your clarity of thoughts is what amazed me. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  3. ruchi

    You have beautifully included all the crucial happenings which are currently clouding our nation.I buy your arguments where you highlight the desperate attempt of Kejriwal to be the bellwether of the society as he passes on thoughtless discretion on Nido Tania case.I too sympathize with Tania’s murder ,but certainly just making passionate demands of death sentence is only a way of giving solace for the time being.Passing on capital punishment is a much thought oriented process which is often delayed due to judicial progress.Other than that I also second your angst towards the existence of AFSPA in the north eastern states which creates a sense of inadmissible quality and showcases the need to tame the other.The underlying scenario is very savage where many women get raped and many deaths are simply unjust.However I beg to differ that Capital punishment all together is regressive to society.I too firmly believe that a strong moral character to be built is more important than creating a sense of fear.However trying to incorporate a civic sense among everyone in such a huge population is fantastical.Who will go to the extremes to teach people in nook and corner of the the world the values of humanity?.Capital punishment nonetheless creates a sense of fear among people that wrong will not be tolerated.I do not vouch for capital punishment but in the Nirbhaya rape case I guess no one would have wanted to live in a society where such beasts live who animate such a brutal act.Elimination of unwanted is important.You may also give them life imprisonment so that they burn in their conscience(if they have) but it will only propogate a sentiment that there is no real justice and hence there will never be fear of wrong.

  4. Kabir

    Arvind Kejriwal, Mamta Banerjee, Imran Khan all promised changed. While it is extreme to compare Imran with Kejriwal but still there are lot of similarities. Imran Khan is playing around with Taliban and Kejriwal is silent on AFSPA.
    How long will this populism work!

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