The right to riot and rampage

Shiban Khaibri

Imagining from which deeper depths we have slowly and steadily risen to making the process of developing this country on constant basis as our state policy which has even proven to be enviable for many countries, watching some enemies from within burning and destroying national assets for whatever reasons is increasingly shocking while concerned authorities being found virtually helpless in controlling such an anarchy unleashed on roads , railway stations etc is all the more stunning. Who are the ones who have professionalised in hiring unruly mobs, ”armed” instantaneously with stones, petrol bottles, iron rods , lathis etc to burn, damage and destroy whatever comes their way ? One really turns emotional seeing how in the name of Agnipath , railway bogies were burnt in no time , how railway stations were vandalised , how stationary trains ready to chug off from different railway stations were not only stopped for three to four days but smashed extensively. Who is so much in anger and against ”whom” and why – is most important ? Again, why should such anger find its catharsis in burning public property built and raised with our , yes- with our money paid as taxes? Why should not the arsonists, hooligans and rioters burn and destroy their own properties to show ”anger” in more pointed form ? These unlawful elements are behaving worst than enemies of this country by taking pride in giving call for Bharat Bandh or closing the country, stopping movement of trains, jamming the wheels of development, creating all hurdles in building and shaping this country into a developed and powerful country . Can we afford to close even for a minute? Can we bear the cost of losses in hundreds of crores of Rupees by stopping the movement of factor endowments of different hues and thus ensure retarding progress and development ?
Strangely and curiously, at the same time, these rioters and hooligans are masquerading as ”upholders of democracy and constitution” and the rights under constitution whilst holding national flag in hands. Ever ready “Andolanjeeves” and pseudo secularists, self styled democrats and disgruntled politicians lend support to these breakers and stoppers of a fast developing India . None of them appealed to these arsonists and rampageous elements to stop vandalising public properties, instead fuelled the fire by counting shortcomings and defects in the Agnipath scheme. Are not these hooligans and rioters shamelessly damaging and undermining the very democracy and the rights guaranteed by the constitution under which they take the refuge but are in fact trying to destroy it. On the other hand, these element are expecting 24×7 non-stop power supply ,fresh sweet water all the 24 hours , hospitals full with Doctors medicines and other facilities, new bridges and roads , schools and colleges and ”cheap petrol” and what not ? Are our internal enemies any less lethal than the external enemies in harming and troubling this country? Agnipath related arson and vandalism which appears to have been planned thus a ”bigger hand” behind it not ruled out , however, cost this nation loss of thousands of crores of Rupees and why should not this loss along with penalties be recovered from the hooligans , arsonists and rampageous elements as early as possible? Why should the life of an innocent and law abiding citizen loving this country, be made miserable?
Problems in such a vast country can arise , some may feel really aggrieved and they must definitely convey their feelings to their ”own government”, even they should ”strongly” protest but not by resorting to stopping and halting India , never in the least, damaging public and private property. One should recall how despite post partition (and freedom from the British rule in 1947) problems of various hues , this country having a population of 36 crores as per the census of 1951 against at present 135 crore, nearly four times as much, we embarked on building and making this country brick by brick and raising national assets . In respect of this cardinal factor, one really feels proud , shortcomings in the process notwithstanding of our achievements. For achieving certain goals, not only adequate resources , hard work , proper planning and dedication are needed but even some measure of sacrifices of rest, comforts and deferring of fulfilment of some needs etc are. In other words, if we state that sacrifices of the present are made for securing the future , it would be quite befitting and a proper assessment . The other side of it is that the life is ”available” only in the present which should be made not only all comfortable but purposeful as well and , therefore, we should proceed in such a way and tread such a path that every step leads us to ”the here” and ”the now”. Is, therefore, the innovative scheme of Agnipath not becoming more realistic and purposeful as it becomes increasingly imperative and relevant for the present?
There are innumerable challenges and threats from many sides including from within to this country’s sovereignty , territorial integrity , cultural identity , peace and the commitment to development with a vision to being a self reliant , self sufficient and a powerful country aiming at becoming the third largest economy by 2030 . Internet or the digital economy of this country is poised to be a staggering $1 trillion by the year 2030. However, there are elements and forces hell bent upon to have implanted various impediments to stall the process. It, therefore, hardly needs any elaboration to explain that apart from protecting and defending our borders and meeting ”other threats”, how much strong our armed forces should be to meet emerging challenges. Can any amount of complacency be allowed to set in , even in the least ,in this noble national mission?
Utopian ideas or fanciful theories like, “If India’s labourers, farmers and weavers were strong and protected, China would never dare to come inside India” as per Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on China-India standoff in eastern Ladakh sector can, at best be a good “masala” for discussions to pass time and for humour generating but can never be employed in reality to fight on the borders. Another theory from the same Congress leader dissecting the causes of the conflict thrust by China on this country, is… “The Chinese understood that Modi was weak and destroyed the nation’s economy and that is why they are inside our country…” So in his opinion , China is “punishing ” us for not taking care of our economy , not strengthening our labourers, farmers and weavers”. By even that imagination, therefore, we need to introduce drastic reforms in the system , but why does his party habitually oppose reforms like Land Acquisition Bill, Demonetization, GST and single taxation regime, Citizenship Amendment Act, Agricultural Reform Laws, Agnipath and the list is long. “Neither will I do it myself nor will I let you do” cannot be allowed when it means governing the country.
Experts and senior officers from the armed forces as also from Defence Ministry have thrown enough light on the details, nitty -gritty and the necessity of bringing in the innovative recruitment scheme of Agnipath in the armed forces , therefore, there is no scope for nor any need of giving forth more clarifications and justifications. However, it becomes the duty of each one of us – those who really love and care for this country – to lend enough support to the premise that today’s problems cannot necessarily be resolved with yesteryear’s solutions and procedures. A young force means strength, agility, vigour, mobility, enthusiasm and facing huge challenges. This country is blessed with 56% of its population in the young age group and verily is called as “a young nation” . Greatness and the causes of increasing levels of the resilience of Indians are the maiden age as 28 years as against 37 in China, 38 in the US, 45 in western Europe and 49 in Japan which implies a vast potential of young energetic and strong human resources which can be interpreted as working age population of Bharat which has numerically outstripped its non- working age group. Hence the youth being a clear advantage for and strength of India must get reflected in our armed forces .
Speaking elaborative about Agnipath would be just a repetition but looking to all the aspects including financial and post four year period factors, no room should be given to any sorts of apprehensions. Not only for earning money and making a living by joining our armed forces but with the high spirits of serving this country in uniform and reserving place of esteem in the hearts of the people , our young Agniveers should embrace this scheme of making our armed forces a force to reckon with in unparalleled measure.