06-Jan-2008

Comparing Riots

Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar pulls a fast one here. Ticking off various points proving that the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 were worse than Gujarat, he writes
So, on virtually every parameter you can measure, 1984 was worse than 2002. Why then is Modi called a fascist while the Congress is heralded as a secular saviour? Sitaram Yechury of the CPM points out that the Congress ultimately apologised for the 1984 killings, but the BJP has still not done so for 2002.

That is indeed a difference. Modi needs to make a similar gesture. But have the two Communist parties apologised for the millions murdered by their comrades globally?
What does the left parties apologising or not have to do with Gujarat & the anti-Sikh riots?! We're talking about the Congress and the 1984 riots here, aren't we? And why does the left have to apologise for what happened in other countries? As for Nandigram - there is no clear record on what happened there yet and in any case the government there is trying to find a way out and has apologised more than once as far as I can remember. And yes, a sorry makes a big difference.

He also forgets one point: the Gujarat riots are different from the anti-Sikh riots in this respect too: no one can call the Congress anti-Sikh, so the riots can be explained away as a madness of a few days. However, the BJP has always been and perceived to be anti-Muslim - how much ever they try to claim otherwise - hence Gujarat riots acquire a different meaning.

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