Thursday, November 22, 2012

Ajmal Kasab

India as a nation in 2012, after 65 years of existence chooses to punish and execute, by due process of law an ignorant, uneducated and indoctrinated terrorist in a clandestine hush hush manner. To top it all, its educated ministers gloat about it and back slap themselves and our home minister leads us to believe that he decided a month back on the date and chose not to inform the PM or the super mom PM about this decision. Executing terrorists was a routine occurrence and part of his daily chores as home minister. If all this does not qualify to be called bizarre and absurd, then the contention that the Government can escape its fate in Parliament on burning issues like FDI in retail etc. takes the cake. Also the eagerness of our government to take on Narendra Modi and beating their breast and proclaiming "I am macho man"  coz. I hanged Ajmal Kasab (a radical animal like man who was unrepentant and thought that he had been conferred his ticket to heaven).

A mature civilization does not use capital punishment routinely and many countries have abolished capital punishment. But India continues to keep this provision, to be used in the rarest of rare crimes, as we believe that such punishment will act as deterrents and prevent acts of terror. While nine terrorists were killed at the time of the crime their presence and death could not conclusively prove the complicity and active participation of Pakistan in this act of terror against India. The sacrifice of constable Tukaram Ombale, who put himself in the line of fire and actually captured Ajmal Kasab helped India show the world the evidence of Pakistan's direct involvement in the 26/11 attack on Mumbai. Is India a soft state and a soft target for acts of terror and will this execution deter any terrorist?? As a people have we learnt our lessons and are we safer today and more capable in preventing terror attacks??  These questions are far more important than weather we have hung Kasab by following correct procedures.

India is a flawed democracy and has never in its history punished perpetrators of mass genocide, so to say that our democracy has triumphed thanks to this incident is at best a half truth if not an outright lie. We have different yardsticks for different criminals has been proved endless number of times. The state kills in the name of "development" by displacing and uprooting the poor, by neglecting and allowing to rot the whole health system, by allowing foreign MNC's to get away by killing thousands in the worst industrial accident. Our policies of material acquisitions and greed lead us to destroy and kill thousands including our mother earth.

Mercy is a virtue, reflecting positive human values and however bad we feel about the crime that occurred on   that day, we become criminals ourselves by taking the life of another individual. An uneducated 24 year old man, indoctrinated by radical merchants of hate who commits an act of terror deserves mercy in my opinion as he probably does not know what sin he is committing. You may say that Kasab knew well what he was doing and therefore should not be given mercy. But I put to you that Kasab did no really know, that all men are  creations emanating from the same divine source and he was actually part of the same universal consciousness as his victims. In fact most of us do not know or even if we know we choose not to know the fact of our universal oneness. Let the land of the Vedanta rise above petty hatred and eye for an eye mentality and usher in an era of peace and unity among all of us and our fellow dwellers on earth.

These are my humble views and i would welcome debate and comments on these.

Dr. Vispi Jokhi


Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

I am also a long term follower of Vedanta. I disagree with what You are saying completely. One should not allow oneself to be overcome with misplaced virtues and emotions, rather one should refer to scriptures to decide what is appropriate and what is not.

Mercy should never be allowed to trespass justice. One should put oneself in the victim's place before making such statements. For some, loss of a family member destroys the entire generation.

Request You to please review your understanding of religion, I think you are making a mistake. God is an impartial observer who upholds Dharma in the universe. Mahabharata is a vivid example of how Dharma always comes above emotions.


Vispi said...

Dear friend i do not claim scholarship about Vedanta but feel capital punishment is not compatible with Vedanta. Ajmal Kasab will pay for his crimes as per the laws of Karma. The responsibility of the state is to prevent such crimes and punish the wrong doer by due process of law. However hanging of a criminal does not act as a deterrent nor changes the heart of a wrong doer.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dr,

Thanks for your response.

Capital punishment is in accordance with Dharma. And Vedanta cannot exist without Dharma. Vedanta is the means of liberation, and based on the Upanishads. Upanishads never oppose the Dharma-Shastras, rather both work in harmony. One should not mix the two. For proper and effective functioning of any state, Dharma Shastras have enough guidelines to prevent degradation. Capital punishment is in consonance with such guidelines.

And to clinch this matter,
we have seen God Himself set the example of destroying the evil-doers, and as He states, He takes Avatars to destroy the evil-doers.

We should definitely be most merciful but also be cautious so as not to go overboard. Mercy is a high-class virtue, but imagine a mother who lost her innocent son by an assassin. Her mind will definitely ask for capital punishment, one has to respect that sentiment and not hurt them under any circumstances.


Anonymous said...

And Dear Dr,

Not that anyone likes someone being killed, especially young people like K. Nobody likes it. But justice has to take it's course. And Atma is immortal, so God will definitely decide what is appropriate for every Atma. God knows exactly what each individual deserves because He is an eternal witness, so He will definitely take all the circumstances into account for K while giving him his due.

Please do read this:

Let us hope the masterminds of terror are also brought to justice, because they have a greater blame to take in all this.


Sujit Patwardhan (Pune, India) said...

A sane reaction on the subject for a change.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts which we need to introspect on rather than to respond or reject instantly.