Once was Mumbai – By Kumar Ketkar

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/once-was-mumbai/391603/

Indian Express > Op-Ed >

Once was Mumbai

Posted: Nov 28, 2008 at 0115 hrs IST

By Kumar Ketkar

: Even otherwise, the city of Mumbai is explosive. But every time there is a terrorist attack, the metropolis is gripped by a kind of fear psychosis. The attack on “A Wednesday” (what a morbid coincidence!), proved yet again that the so-called “courageous” and “resilient” Mumbaikar is rapidly getting used to mayhem and murder. That is not a reflection of courage or of collective sanity, but of the desensitisation of the mass mind.

That the terrorist attack took place just when the media was full of stories of “saffron terrorism” may be a coincidence, but the killing of Hemant Karkare, the chief of the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS), gives the event an anti-climactic turn. The Sangh Parivar and the Shiv Sena had gone to town for almost a month, aggressively campaigning against the ATS and virtually running a propaganda drive to condemn Karkare as an anti-Hindu and anti-national officer. Karkare was known for his upright character and courage, as well as for his patriotism. With his long experience in RAW, he strongly believed that terrorism has no colour and creed. He worked tirelessly, and arrested those who were engaged in terrorist acts, irrespective of faith. As long as the suspects arrested were Muslims, he received applause. But the moment he caught extremist Hindus, and collected evidence against them, he became a villain in the eyes of the Sangh Parivar and the Sena.

Now that he has lost his life fighting the terrorists — who are believed to be part of the global Taliban-ISI-Al Qaeda network — the sinister campaign against him has turned on its head.

Karkare had monitored international terrorist operations and splits, as well as “splits within splits” in the ISI, and was following the threads of the groups who were also working against the Pakistani state. The tragedy is that along with him, two other brave very senior police officers, Ashok Kamte and Vijay Salaskar, have also been killed by the terrorists. Intellectuals, talking heads and the media will now routinely condemn the state and central governments for failure in gathering intelligence and not having a “disaster management plan”. But the fact is the city of Mumbai has gone beyond any disaster management plan. This is because disaster is a way of life in this vast, totally disconnected and uncontrollably grown metropolis, where there are a crore and a half people, but no social and community life. That is why…

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One Response to “Once was Mumbai – By Kumar Ketkar”

  1. Ravi Says:

    Found this on the web… It’s truly inspiring to read about Hemant Karkare, Mumbai’s ATS Chief, who lost his life during the attacks. Here is a tribute to him
    https://chalbasey.com/hemant-karkare/stories/a-salute-to-a-brave-man

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