Narendra Dabholkar, Govind Pansare, MM Kalburgi- All murdered, dead and done with. Supposedly resting in peace.
Gauri Lankesh- Another one brought to task for speaking her mind out on 5th September 2017. Three piercing bullets were enough to silence a voice which would not stop crusading. Like her peers gone before, she too is expected to rest in peace while the rest of us, including the indifferent elite, write condolences and forget her later till the next one falls.
You and me- We do not even need bullets. We are cowards who have fallen with just a thought that we could be next in line. Our dead souls already rest in peace in our living bodies as we have continuously been doing for the last few years despite growing signs of intolerance emerging from every nook and corner of India.
Sometimes money is used to silence the voice. After all media – print or visual needs money to sustain themselves and make profits for their owners.
Sometimes power is used to mute dissent. After all humans have the tendency to crawl when asked to bend by the powerful. Especially in India where we make humans as Masters and Lords and leave our self at their feet allowing them to chart our destinies.
Sometimes constant abuse, troll armies, fake alt news, threats and slander are used to camouflage truth. After all even the Sun falters and loses its shine when covered with dark clouds.
When nothing works, violence, even murder is the final weapon to wipe out the messenger of reason or truth from the face of this earth.
The modern keyboard has taught a new way to erase dissent. Not just in virtual world but also in real world.
No longer is there a need for debate. No longer is there a need for divergent views. No longer could there be two paths leading to the same destination.
It is either this way- THEIR WAY or a cul-de-sac.
And this is sinister. More gruesome and troublesome than we can imagine.
The death, nay murder of these free thinkers who only wanted us to listen to the voice of reason was never intended to silence just their voices. After all individuals could be controlled and monitored through the system itself.
No this violence is to instill FEAR in the minds of the remaining that they better mend their ways lest it be their turn next. This violence was not directed towards the meek bodies that sheltered those fiercely independent souls but towards stronger bodies and communities of Indians who are weak in spirit and will shut all windows to their already closed minds and follow the leader to the hilt.
For if you and I have even an iota of defiance left then we will rise and say -NO MORE.
We will not remain shocked, angered, disgusted, distressed, numb and definitely not silent any more after the sacrifice of these martyrs. The spirit of Gauri Lankesh cannot be pierced by those three bullets which made her body fell.
Her spirit should light fire in our souls and make us say- ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.
We will no longer accept any kind of intolerance. We will speak out and stand straight against any cow vigilant who goes after Pehlu Khan or attempts to kill humans in the name of protecting animals.
We will no longer remain silent if anyone who speaks out against social evils or superstitions or malpractices being carried out in the name of religion is made to tone down his voice in the name of hurting pseudo-religious sentiments.
We will no longer shy away from writing against the state or the government in power even at the cost of being branded anti-national or anti-Indian.
We will not FEAR and will not surrender to their dirty tricks. They know who they are- be it the religious right; or the politicians who wish to retain power at any cost by dividing people in the name of religion, language, region, caste or class; or the corporate big-wigs who need to silence their detractors; or even the Babus who have brought the country down to their knees using centuries old laws to curb free thought in the modern world.
Today we are not defeated. Nor will ever be! We will stand tall and stand together and our islands of dissent will one day merge together and create a land mass where the world will be truly free and voice of reason will prevail.
For those who still wish to use their inability do do anything as their strength, keep quiet and watch from the sides, your time is up. It is the beginning of the end and at such times you need to take sides. The side of a Rajya where the silence of the ‘Shamsans and Kabristans’ or resting places is welcome or the cacophony of dissent which gives voice to the meek and the weak. Do you prefer a land where majority and its torchbearer decides what is right and what is wrong or do you prefer a world where you too may have retain your own voice of reason and decide for yourself what is good for you? Is it worthwhile being a Hindu or a Muslim or a Christian in the narrow domains that the religious leaders are restricting your identity to or do you really understand the true teachings of these religions and accept tolerance and acceptance as a way of life?
For if you continue to act dead and remain silent then they will continue to march ahead with their agenda of total domination. And when they are done with Narendras and Gauris of the world, when my soul-mates out there and I will also fall to their bullets, then they will come after you and show their real faces.
The faces of fascists, megalomaniac dictators who considers their word as the gospel truth for the lowly you.
We still have hope as we still have you and I together and we can fight this crusade together. From this very day.
RISE in PEACE my friend and RESIST in PEACE. This is the least we own to Gauri today!
DISCLAIMER : The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the GLF Circle.