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Sunday, February 08, 2009

media hurry to insert Taliban into Hinduism

The goons in Mangalore deserve to be locked up and tried under law. But, the media's obsession with goons ensures that they grant the goonda leader a podium!  And this person, goes on to make the kind of noise that would ensure attention on himself for some more time. He needs this publicity as much as the media needs his sensationalism. His following is meagre, his organization has representation in two districts of Karnataka, has contested 8 seats and lost deposit in all. 

Bingo! next day, HINDU writes an editorial that we have Hindu Taliban now!!  Remarkable this transformation of local goondas to Taliban! HINDU has decided to play (Hindu)God!! 

Anbumani Ramdoss wants all liquor shops shut down early and consumption of liquor banned for everyone, that doesn't make him a Taliban. Recently, Madarassas in UP had declared that Muslim girls cannot study in co-ed schools, that doesn't make these groups Taliban. The Law Minister, some time back,  when queried as to why wives need to travel with judges going abroad on duty, describes them as part of the 'comfort' for the Judge and asks the interviewer to 'understand' because, 'you are a woman'! That doesn't make him anti-feminist of course, and, certainly not Taliban. There have been numerous instances of women (particularly members of SHGs) marching to local liquor shops and forcibly getting them shut down as it is destroying their community, such acts have not been called Taliban. 

But, the eagerness of our media to associate small town violence to global terror and thereby score political point seems outright cheap. The Taliban, its influence and power, is least because of its authority on Islam. It suited certain powers to promote a bunch of fanatics at some point for a short sighted purpose. Our media seems to play the same game now. This is not just ignorance of the Taliban, but, also dangerously irresponsible  and sensationalism of foolish proportions. 

On the Mangalore Pub incident: I think women have as much right to get drunk as men do, in public, in private, wherever. I also believe that local communities should have their say in whether or not license should be granted to pubs and liquor shops in an area. If it is seen as a problem to a community it is best shut down, for women, men and all. Communities can object to liquor shop because it destroys their productivity, increases addiction, drains the economy, is against the culture and tradition, is just seen as a bad influence, whatever. All of these are equally valid and ought to be respected. 

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