Dr. Pankaj Narang never knew what he had coming when he got out of the scuffle with bike riders, and went back home. A half hour later, he was dragged out of his home by a crazed mob of 12-15, beaten with hockey sticks and such… Dr. Narang fell unconscious and later died at a private hospital.
The main attackers’ names were, apparently, Nasir and Amir (Times of India news story – Link here). You’d say why is this important? It’s important because I am not talking about how Dr. Pankanj Narang died. Nor am I talking about the religion bit involved here; don’t think it’s not. What I am talking about is the way the news report JUSTIFIES the act of communal mob violence committed against this man in an utterly premeditated, brutal way. Don’t forget that Dr. Narang was killed after being dragged out from his home, with his brother-in-law by his side, and in his son Aditya’s presence.
Examine this paragraph from the news report carried in all main editions of The Times of India – Whether it was pent-up rage, aggravated by economic disparity, or sheer goondaism, Dr Narang won’t have bargained for this when he had returned to his house after his brother-in-law, Vikas Sethi, intervened and resolved the matter.
I am yet to come across such a shameful example of offering justification for a crime in a news report, and calling it a news report. I wonder that Jyoti Singh Pandey’s rape wasn’t a result of economic disparity!
Someone commits a pre-meditated murder, and is that someone is from this particular minority community, as well as falls in a lower economic strata, the crime can be justified on the basis of economic disparity! And the justification is not coming in any court of law, it’s coming from a newspaper, which is subtly and subconsciously trying to colour people’s minds! Don’t believe it? Look what was the headline when two buffalo herders were killed – 2 Muslims herding buffaloes thrashed, hanged in Jharkhand. Going by that, what should the present report have been headlined as? – Hindu Dentist brutally thrashed, killed by Muslim mob. No? Why not?
In coming across this crime, in coming across only this crime, why does the newspaper offer us probable causes or explanations? Is economic disparity a probable cause or a justifiable reason? Actually speaking, wasn’t the bike rider, in the moment that the scuffle happened, a stronger party? If there was no danger from the bike that brushed past, would Dr. Narang, who was on foot, have felt threatened? How would you feel if a similar thing were to happen with you?
There is so much economic disparity in our society as we speak, can we all start committing crimes against those who are relatively well-off? Is that what the newspaper is trying to say?
It’s like Germany explaining the molestation and sexual harrassment of more than 100 women in Cologne on December 31st, by a huge crowd of men, a lot of whom were immigrants, on the basis of economic disparity. Then terror attacks are justified on the basis of economic disparity between the countries.
The fact is, factionism and political interests are eating our country hollow. These termites are within the country and there is no one else to blame. The Hindu majority, guided by the ethos of the Sanaatan Dharma, has not placed due importance on congregating. In this divided world, though, where right-wing parties are gaining ground in Europe, where hate-driven Trump is a serious presidential candidate in the US, congregation is becoming more and more clearly a priority. It’s not a fear-based calculation as much as a need-based one. This is the developing reality.
BUT, sane voices, progressive views, and effective communication can help make this better. Media can be a tool for this rather an a tool for further rot and division. However, the media in our country won’t do that. Because? Presstitutes. Thank you General V K Singh for giving us this word.