Within minutes of the 21 February twin blasts in Hyderabad, Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde declared that the government had seen it coming. There were sufficient warnings, he claimed. The natural question then was, what did the government do about these warnings? The Home Minister had no answers then. He attempted to link the blasts to the hanging of Afzal. But the theory did not wash.
The most suspicious aspect about the twin blasts was the timing. It happened at the most appropriate time for the UPA which was under siege by yet another round of corruption charges. The media was abuzz with daily revelations of personalities involved in bribing Indians for the VVIP choppers from an Italian firm. The naming of ‘a family’ as the recipients of the bribe was getting too close to the Congress leadership. This issue was sure to rock the parliament. But, from the minute the blasts took place, all the focus shifted to the gory scenes and political reactions. The chopper purchase scam went out of the headlines of both the newspapers and the tv channels.
There were renewed discussions on NCTC, which has been consistently opposed by all the opposition ruled states. The UPA sees the NCTC as a super sleuth set-up with sweeping powers to act over the head of the state governments. The idea was first mooted in 2008 and has been raised again and again in such instances as the blasts. It has become a routine reaction of the UPA to kick up dust on various issues when it is in trouble. Using this haze, the government escapes the heat.
During the nine years of UPA rule, terrorists have struck at various places at will and gotten away, without being caught and punished. The number of incidents of blasts have gone up tremendously. Even now, more than ten days after the blasts the government is groping in the dark about the identity of the suspects. This, after the Home Minister had claimed prior knowledge! Shinde is yet another in the list of ineffective and uninspiring Home Ministers the UPA has produced. In his enthusiasm to win the approval of the lady at 10 Janpath, he made that very unintelligent crack about the RSS and the BJP training terrorists. In the wake of the latest blasts, several questions arose. The most important being the effectiveness of our intelligence agencies. The cozy relations that the UPA government is all the time pushing for with our errant neighbours seems to be affecting the functioning of the security apparatus in the country.
Indians are slowly getting used to periodic violence. Blasts here and there do not affect us. It’s business as usual for most of the people. The repeated images of broken bodies and bloody scenes only create a revulsion and even give a sense of fear. But such indifference of the citizens to the attacks on the State is not a good sign for the country. Since the government pussy-foots on terror, the people of the country must react, and react strongly. We should pin the government down, force it to act so that our lives are secure and our heads held high.