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Murder of Gauri Lankesh and others like her

Posted by Navashree Nandini
September 8, 2017

NOTE: This post has been self-published by the author. Anyone can write on Youth Ki Awaaz.

Gauri Lankesh, senior journalist and editor of Lankesh Patrika was shot dead at the entrance of her home in Bengaluru on Tuesday. The murder of an activist who is known for speaking fearlessly against the government incited anger, annoyance and appall in the minds of media fraternity and left wing followers. The right wing too expressed their shock and sorrow on the demise.

However, there were many others who call themselves “bhakts”, “Hindutva preacher”, “proud Hindu”, etc blatantly celebrated the murder on social media. On the other hand, major newspapers and news channels highlighted the fact that Gauri supported anti-hindutva politics. The portrayal was such that it occurred that the major reason behind her murder is her anti-RSS and anti-Hindutva stand. While this forms an effective cause, it would be erroneous if this is taken to be the pivotal reason behind the murder.

The pivotal reason is simple that Gauri was killed not because she spoke against the ideology of a certain party but because she stood against the working of the established system (similar to M.M Kalburgi who was a teacher and Dabholkar, a rationalist). All of them challenged the system through their words and actions. They had the power to change. We have to understand that the system runs on a fundamental; a fundamental followed by each and every party irrespective of the ideologies they adhere to. A fundamental that states, ’The one ruling is right and absolute.’ When anyone opposes the fundamental, they are made to meet the end.

Here I am not defending any political party or its organization. My approach is to look at the larger picture. The question is if the political party is removed from power, the killers are prosecuted and the organization banned, will such murders stop? The answer is NO! There shall be a new ‘ruling’ party with new ideologies and organization which will continue the legacy of murdering the rational and the fearless. As John Perkins describes in his book, “Confession of an Economic Hitman” that the ‘face of the leader changes but the work remains the same’. There are negotiations to suppress opposing voices blended with bribes and if bribes fail, the jackals are ready for action.

Changing the fundamental of the system is a lengthy and strenuous process. The one in power can of course do it-if not entirely-to some extent. However, they fall prey to the ongoing political avarice, become gluttonous and start safeguarding the fundamental and stoop to the most horrible extent in this process. It is here that these rational activists come into picture. Their intellect identifies not only the flawed tools of the rulers but also the flawed mechanisms.

When we talk about justice to Gauri Lankesh and others like her, we must know that justice is not prosecution of the men who shot them; justice is when we understand and fight not only against some social and political groups but against the fundamental of the system on which they work. When we say that for every voice that is silenced there shall be hundred voices, we have to make it very clear that those voices are not a mere chorus but individual voices whose minds comprehend the visible ideology as well as the invisible working beneath the running system.  Only then can we cease the rulers from becoming power-mongers and end the killings of voices that are meant to heard.


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