R V S Mani’s book, Hindu Terror names and shames people. It has to be debated and taken forward in a big way, and translated into Indian languages.
People should know how their previous government had scant regard for their lives when it colluded with Breaking India forces of the worst kind to achieve political ends.
On 20 July 2010, then prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh hosted a lunch in which US ambassador Timothy Roemer asked Congress president Rahul Gandhi about 'Lashkar-e-Taiba's activities in the region and its immediate threat to India'. Wikileaks cables reveal that Rahul Gandhi responded by saying that 'the bigger threat may be the growth of radicalised Hindu groups'.
It was not just a casual comment by a leader then considered the crown prince of the Nehru-Maino dynasty. A lot of work has gone behind the scenes to fabricate the 'saffron/Hindu' terror. R V S Mani, former under-secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), in his new book Hindu Terror (2018) takes the reader on a detailed tour of the processes and mechanisms through which the strongmen in the then United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government created this formidable narrative. If even half of these accounts were true, and there is no reason to doubt their credibility, then India and Hindus are in serious trouble, where a very powerful section of their own polity and populace is hand in glove with their enemies.
The book through documents and details reconstructs how the then home minister P Chidambaram literally manufactured the 'Hindu terror'. The book makes a shocking read. Fortunately, it is a laborious read. If it were not so and if one grasps what the book actually reveals, it can give sleepless nights for any lover of this nation and society.
Mani reveals that there is a strong indication that somewhere high in the portals of power there was an attempt to portray even the 26/11 Mumbai attacks as the work of the so-called Hindu terror despite substantial evidence of Pakistan-based terror outfit executing the massacre. It can be recalled how some UPA leaders, including Digvijay Singh, the political mentor of Rahul Gandhi, unleashed a propaganda of conspiracy theories that suggested the role of Hindu terror behind 26/11.
A few days after the bloodshed, then chief minister of Maharashtra Vilasrao Deshmukh makes 'a customary visit' to terror attack spots - accompanied by film producers! With anguish, Mani asks, "Was he trying to sell this as a film plot is a question that often crops up. If so, had the political establishment partnered with the perpetrators and their supporters is another question that begs an answer”.
It is after page 106 that the chief villain of the piece enters. As P Chidambaram takes over the Home Ministry, he also creates NIA and Mani points out that 'it was all about introducing a new nonexistent Hindu Terrorism' concept. At the same time, the MHA and NIA were trying to excise statements of David Headley in order to make Ishrat Jahan killed in Gujarat encounter, innocent. Mani explains in detail.
According to Headley, Muzzamil (a key Kashmiri military asset of the LeT, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation) had told him that he played a vital role in the recruitment of Ishrat Jahan and Pranesh Pillai alias Javed Mohammad Sheikh as fidayeen. He also stated that they were assigned the task of eliminating then Chief minister of Gujarat and another prominent leader (Amit Shah?).
But what did UPA government do?
Mani does not hesitate to name and shame the highest in power. He says that then home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde (2012-2014) 'pedalled public lie that the US government had been resisting any further access to David Headley.'
When NIA documentation was given to the media, vital portions of Headley’s testimony had been excised. But Mani points out that nevertheless a full 'tour report' comprising the complete Headley testimony was handed over to home minister Chidambaram. Simultaneously, the UPA government was absolving real terrorists, and allowing those who helped terrorists to escape by pulling strings. It did all this while fabricating false charges of Hindu terror in Malegaon (2006), Samjhauta Express blast (2007) and Mecca Masjid blasts (2007).
R V S Mani provides many disturbing instances.
After an affidavit signed by then home minister Chidambaram in the notorious Ishrat Jahan case, the same one that revealed her terror connections, appeared in the media, the minister, who was then in the United States, got distressed. Mani reveals:
The Joint Secretary later told us that after the media reports, his trip with the Minister was no longer comfortable. Upon his return to India, he called for the file. I must confess that was last I saw of the file at that point in time. (The file, the media tells me, has gone missing.) Thereafter, Home Minister Chidambaram, an eminent lawyer, with yet another eminent lawyer set about to draft a supplementary affidavit to control the damage done by the MHA counter-affidavit.
In all these details, which may be heavy even for an ordinary reader, there runs a dark, uncomfortable thread. Mani writes:
In retrospect, readers can deduce from the Sardarji Maghanji case, the Ishrat Jahan case and several such other cases that ever since the notification of the POTA Repeal Ordinance on 21.9.2004, the UPA government was more interested in bailing out those accused of terrorism than providing justice to the victims.
In other words, the government was run by forces which wanted to destroy their political enemies and in the process colluded with Breaking India forces of the worst kind. And the latter amassed during the UPA decades the ability to strike at will at anyone and everywhere they chose between 2004 and 2014.
Lives did not matter to our rulers. They were just collateral damages in their design to destroy their political rivals. But for the jihadists and other Breaking India forces, the benefits that the UPA political class accrued was the collateral benefit even as they went about destroying Indian unity silently and steadily.
Today, many are criticising the Narendra Modi government for having done nothing towards the so-called ‘Hindutva’ agenda. But in contrast to how the citizens of India could be attacked at the will by the ‘Breaking India’ forces, anywhere of their choice, terrorism is today confined to Jammu and Kashmir . And for that we may have to thank the Modi-Ajit Doval team.
The current government has scored a big victory against the earlier government’s nefarious elements. It has by and large provided physical protection to ordinary citizens across the country. But the government seems to be struggling in its fight against the urban-Naxal and urban-jihadist sleeper cells - a gift from the previous regime.
Think about this : bomb blast after bomb blast ripped across India and killed hundreds between 2004 and 2014. No media outrage. But the media was up in arms over killing of a dozen people in different parts of India for a variety of reasons - an outrage that was accompanied by a ‘Lynchistan’ narrative.
Against this background, this book becomes important. It does need editing and is as terse as the author himself. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. This books needs to be debated. As said earlier, the book names and shames people. It should be translated into Indian languages. People should know how their previous government had scant regard for their lives. They should know that every vote to these pro-’Breaking India’ political forces is a bullet loaded into the assault rifle of a terrorist waiting to kill our own - somewhere, sometime.