Friday, 15 June 2012

How to make a Terrorist - 101

How to make a Terrorist - 101. 

This is a course being taught at the Indian Parliament and its many subsidiaries (nearly all the Vidhan Sabhas) since our so called Independence. Most of us city dwellers generally read about this stuff as conspiracy theories and dismiss them since it doesn't directly affect our deadline driven lives. 

I was among the many who find it hard to fathom why someone would take to arms. All this changed in a hurry when I got a 'crash' course in "How to make a Terrorist - 101".

I was on my way back from a nice little vacation at a little known hillstation called Chakrata. Having done some very basic research we found another route back home to Delhi which promised to be shorter by 50 km.
Route: The route is on State highway 57 and starts from a small town called Herbertpur.

Herbertpur - Behat - Saharanpur - Tajpur - Baraut - Bagpat
The first 50 km on the road were like a dream and I almost patted myself on the back for my excellent Googling skills but before I could handout the prizes I hit the first pothole and then the next and the next and so on. It seemed the American army had unleashed a barrage of Napalms on the entire stretch of 240 odd kilometers and infact the road had craters rather than potholes. On hindsight I should have turned back but something inside me kept telling me that the craters would magically vanish and be replaced by something we humans call a road. The stupid voice got me to the point of no return and soon there was no turning back. 

I covered the entire distance at an average speed of 10-20 km per hour and my darlings (car ....and wife) screamed and grunted at each hurdle. It was so mentally and physically draining that halfway down the road I lost patience and had to ask my wife to take over the wheel. So what's the big deal in that, well given my confidence in her driving abilities and the love for my car this was a BIG DEAL. I could go on without pause to try and explain how bad the road was but I am going to end this bit by stating that it would have been better if there were no road at all.

But this blog is not about me or my insignificant existence, its about the people living in the many villages and towns that we crossed on the way (and there are many on this route in the heartland of UP, the most populous region in the country). Its about the torture that they have been subjected to by the administration of the state and the entire country. The few hours on that road made me want to gun down everyone even remotely responsible for its current state and I can only imagine what someone who has to endure this day in and day out would be willing to do. A simple thing like a drive to work or school or to the farmers market could rearrange your skeletal structure. What if someone you knew or loved fell ill and needed urgent medical attention and wasn't able to get help in time due to the state of the road. Wouldn't that enrage you to no end? 

The interesting thing to notice is that there is a very sizeable population of the Muslim community that reside on this stretch and suffer as a consequence. It would be so easy to convince a youth living in this area that this country discriminates against Muslims. If you factor in the number of youth that would reside in this 240 km stretch its enough to create a small army of jehadis and if you factor in the sorry state of roads in the other remote areas of the country and remove the community aspect (lack of basic infrastructure pisses off everyone equally) then we probably have the equivalent of the Pakistani army residing right here.

Will this ever change? What can I do to change this other than vote and pay my taxes honestly?

I don't have the answer to these but do know that this course and its advanced levels will continue to be taught at the democratic institutions of our country, while we struggle to get a hold of our deadlines....

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