India : When terror strikes home

Shenali Waduge

Is there a link to world terrorism & the global manufacture of arms?Most likely & surprisingly the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council are in fact the manufactures of the majority of the world's arms. This obviously leaves little hope for any global peace so long as countries continue to profit from sales of arms!

Of late there has been a surge in terror attacks on Indian states - predominantly states under Hindu leadership which has prompted the terror to be labeled "pro Islamic" thus taking investigations along the lines that terrorism equates with Islam & obviously echoing US sentiments. Continuing with the Islamic tag India is likely to be making the same error the Americans have made since 9/11 unless Indians come out of the embryo to acknowledge that terror should be taken as terror before they politicize the event into fulfilling their hobby of finding fault with Pakistan. Of the many terror attacks that have taken place through 2006 pro Islamic groups have been blamed though none of the investigations have reached significant breakthroughs to actually provide basis for the accusations.

In the Sri Lankan context many have wondered why the Indians - Sri Lanka's "friendly" neighbor did what they did during Indira Gandhi's reign by going to great lengths to arm & train paramilitary groups into destabilizing another nation. We thought that her successor, her son would be different & that continued through the interchange of the two dominant parties & their coalition Governments but all have been guilty of only temperamental actions. However, there has been no reprieve & the Central Government has done pittance to even gag the Tamil Nadu state politicos who for wanton reasons continue to use the LTTE as a carrot to get round the Central Government no sooner Tamil Nadu legislative support is required. India chooses to hang its morals & acceptance of international norms & conventions that clearly should denounce terrorism.

The wave of attacks in India is condemned by all those who denounce terrorism - these are the ordinary people of the world who unfortunately are powerless when decisions to wage wars, strike against terrorism or even encourage terrorism lies with world leaders & their administrations. As ordinary people we can only rationalize & wonder why the world leaders are not taking constructive measures to address the issues honestly.

With the SAARC Conference presently taking place in Colombo & the calls for the SAARC nations to place Terrorism top on its agenda it should not end up a mere conference topic - some realistic framework, measures need to be taken if the SAARC leaders are to really address the topic of terrorism even if it means compromising for the larger nations like India who use terrorism as a means to bully weaker nations.

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