Felt compelled to respond
- August 1, 2005
Thank you everyone for your solidarity and sharings. This post is actually in response to a comment on my last post. When one shares a partiular story of violence and oppression, it is not to diminish any other.
I couldn’t agree more that outrage should be expressed whenever there is violence, hatred and oppression irrespective of religion race or caste. Gujarat has deeply pained me, not only because they were Muslims(as there has been a growing anti-Muslim wave in many parts of the world), but because they were innocent people who were systematically being abused and eliminated. In my own humble way of course, one has spoken out against the atrocities of the Kashmiri pundits, people who got killed in the Godhra incident and people worldwide who have suffered various forms of systemic and mass violence.
The reason why Gujarat has affected me personally is that I have been there several times and what you just can’t forget are the vacant eyes of orphaned children, muted gang raped women, scared young men living in refugee camps…it affects you deeply, emotionally. It is not to say the other suffering around the world is any less. But I think it’s human to get more affected by what you get exposed to. A similar pogrom happened in 1984 with the Sikhs. It was shocking and hurtful, but I was much younger, media wasn’t so developed to show us as much and may be that’s why the emotional impact wasn’t as strong. Undoubtedly, all forms of hatred and violence need to be condemned. There can be no exceptions.