Nobel Memorial Prize and Terrorism

Shiban Khaibri
The incompatibility of the two, prima facie appears to be unquestionable but with application of a bit of analysis and research , terrorism in itself must become a branch of serious study in Economics and issues concerning commerce and trade. Since development of people, societies, countries and the world, on the whole and the subject of Economic Science are correlated and intertwined and the menace of terrorism being one of the biggest hurdles in economic development of the affected countries in particular , it is intriguing as to why this subject is not becoming the pet choice of top Economists of the world to thoroughly research , analyse and bisect its various telling effects on the respective economies. However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has initiated the serious debate on it in terms of how much did this scourge cost the affected economies if his speech at Brasilia BRICS summit on November 14 is thoroughly perused . His thoughts , perception, varied analytical pursuits and concerns on the subject, need to be not only highly eulogised but taken further in the areas of academics , curriculum and research.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi dwelt with the curse of terrorism in an absolutely novel way by disclosing that terrorism has cost more than $1 trillion or Rs.72 lakh crore to the world economy while terming the scourge as the biggest threat to development, peace and prosperity . Further, economic growth of developing nations has dipped by 1.5 % due to terrorism. During the last 10 years alone , this curse of terrorism had consumed more than 2.25 lac precious human lives , destroyed and uprooted societies. He further made it known and from the platform of BRICS in Brazil , he sent the message worldwide, to assess the extent of venom the fangs of terrorism carried and said that terrorism was creating atmosphere of doubt and fear as terror financing , drug trafficking and organised crime (emanating from terrorism) indirectly harmed trade and business. It won’t be any exaggeration that only due to incessant campaign against terrorism at each and every international platform by Modi, did result in BRICS conducting its first seminar on evolving strategies for countering terrorism. Giving instances and examples would be outside the scope of this write up as the fate of Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir, persecution of religious minorities in Syria, Iraq, like Yazidis etc , the virtual extinction of religious minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan etc, the sufferings of children and women , migrations and genocides as a fall out of the scourge of terrorism are its heart rending after effects. Yes, it is the biggest enemy of humanity where not only personal liberty, honour and freedom but even the basic survival stood increasingly threatened and vastly jeopardised.
This year, Indian born American economist Abhijeet Bannerjee working at Massachusetts Institute of Technology was awarded the coveted Nobel Prize for his contribution to the subject of Economics. His fond field is “Developmental Economics” which is increasingly relevant and much required by the present generation than before to speed up the pace of development and narrow down the gaps between poverty and better ways of living life . Needless to add, Banerjee has remained the alumnus of Jawaharlal Nehru University ,Delhi , the same university where some students for the last few years, have been hell bent upon lowering the image of this otherwise prestigious university by indulging in vandalism , politically motivated protests , patronising and participating in promoting activities which could come under the bracket of being anti national . Thank God , this University by and large, has the distinction of having students like Banerjee also and not only those ones like who recently violated and insulted world famous icon Swami Vivekanand who gave to the world scientific and spiritual message of peace, tolerance, contentment , high values in life, noble pursuits and service of mankind. How come Indians living in India and enjoying subsidies paid by Indians dare to vandalise the statue of a great Indian iconic figure on the campus and then go scot free ? Any Indian living in any part of India had the common heritage , culture and traditions of thousands of years which has survived severest vicissitudes of several centuries and now anyhow , its renaissance sprouting progressively but in a splendid way being imminent , must be borne in mind by those, who by their despicable acts make their loyalty to this country and its rich culture conspicuous of being not beyond doubt.
Various theories of economic development have been presented by Economists from time to time right from Classical, Neo-Classical and New Growth schools of thought. Not going into intricate technicalities of the New Growth Theory or other theories which , of course, is the job of economists and experts , the purpose of making a mention of that here is related to how its various concepts are being regularly put forward by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as priorities which must be taken up by the Government to attend . These include importance of entrepreneurship, knowledge, innovation, technology, discarding obsolete and outdated approach and focussing on desires and wants of the people . Are these not susceptible to the curse of terrorism and related terror activities ? Has a detailed study been made about it at any forum dealing with economic matters, commerce , international trade and allied activities ? Has net loss to individual affected economies been calculated like the recent one being ( just one incident for example) , the massive terror attack in Colombo in Sri Lanka on April 21 which was Easter Sunday or the ones like Pulwama terror attack on February 14 this year? The time has come when each and every aspect of how terrorism was eating into the vitals of affected economies needed to be discussed, debated, damages calculated and massive awareness generated to fight it with mind, conviction, thought , actions and muscles until it was eradicated lock stock and barrel.
Anyway, we are not here to advise Nobel Laureate Abijeet , not even in the least , to have made terrorism and its impact on economic development as the subject of his considered research work instead of what he chose for which he was selected to receive the Nobel prize but would it not have been better and a novel but very pertinent and rather urgent topic of terrorism and economic development to have been considered so as to have received the top and coveted award. Social scientists especially of eminence, have, through their writings, research papers, discourses and debates a lot of impact on whatever was going around . The topic chosen by this writer today may appear to be prosaic and mundanely to some but the ruinous large scale effects of terrorism cannot be underestimated , if not trivialised without in the long run, paying straight through the nose very excruciatingly.
Needless to add, we had lot of hopes from Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen , he being Indian and knowing fully the contours of terrorism , fanaticism and radicalism which provide oxygen to it , how Punjab suffered badly and how Kashmir is badly affected for the last over thirty years . He, however, being otherwise concerned about minorities but not about terrorism and extreme radicalisation appears unbelievable. That Narendra Modi, in his opinion , had not done enough for minorities to “feel safe” for which he said, “I do not want Modi as my PM” but in his opinion, perhaps displaced and hounded out ethnic minority of Kashmiri Pandits figure nowhere in the list of his concerns who are the worst victims of terrorism and are out from their hearths and homes, for thirty long years about which he has spoken not a word, let alone present some research papers.