Saturday, September 27, 2008

Bomb blast in Delhi in Mehrauli kills a young boy

In yet another vivid depiction of the poor state of security in the country (and especially in the capital city), a bomb blast happened in the Mehrauli region of Delhi; this blast killed a young boy (he had stopped to pick up the tiffin in which the bomb was kept) and injured many more. This is shocking because of many reasons:
1. With some major bomb blasts having happened in Delhi only a fortnight back, one would have expected the security level to have been very high. However, it shows for the contempt that the bomb makers and deliverers have for the level of security in the city that a bomb was placed and exploded
2. The way in which this bomb was deployed was like the ultimate in arrogance. From reports, there were people who came in a motorcycle to a crowded street, came and dropped the bomb in broad daylight (unlike in other cases where the bombs were placed with some concealment)
3. Defensive nature of the police and Government response was apparent. There was an attempt to prevent people from feeling that all the arrests and terrorist module breaking claims of the previous weeks were not in vain - so instead the police talked about how these were not connected with the IM terrorists. It was left to the media to raise the frightening thought that if these were not the Indian Mujahideen, then how many terrorist groups were there who were planting bombs in Delhi ?
4. Within a span of a few hours, there were television crews standing on the exact spot where the bomb had exploded. I am not an expert on police methods, but I thought that securing the site of such explosions for further forensic analysis was required.
5. One wonders about the resolve of the Government to really push for anti-terrorist efforts vs. their worries about perceived loss of minority vote-banks. Here you have the Delhi Police (controlled by the center) arresting some students who belonged to Jamia Milia, and the VC of Jamia promises them legal aid (the university is also central government funded). And you have the inane comparisons being made by the Congress that Jamia has also paid for students arrested for vandalism ! Incredible, vandalism = terrorism. Next, if a Jamia student is arrested for murder, the university should also come to his aid.
6. Anti-terror laws. Enough already discussed, but every time an explosion happens, the Government says now we will go in for strict measures; then the allies remind them that Muslim votes will be affected if they go in for strict laws, and the ministers backtrack (instead of promising better safeguards)
Already, the country is not very easy to secure. We have a huge country, with a diverse set of citizens, and determined terrorists are difficult to stop. However, with lack of improper intelligence, and problems similar to what are described above, it's almost like open season for terrorism.

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posted by Ashish Agarwal @ 11:12 AM