Religion is one of biggest contributor to human species’s journey. Religion has been one of biggest unifier among human beings. Religion is also most important imposer of moral values and has contributed immensely in establishing social norms and made society flourish.
But while religion has had many many many benefits it is also true that like any other entity it has had its flaws. Religion has caused divide too among same human species. In name of sect , in name of ‘my way only way’ religion has also contributed in immense blood spill among human beings.
Be it be aurangzebs or crusaders or shia/sunni or brahmin/dalit or hindu/muslim , history has witnesses some of worst side of human beings , all in name of merciful god.
Independent have seen three of worst attacks on communities based on religious identities. First being attack on sikh communities after Indira gandhi died. Innocent sikhs was slaughtered by congress people in those riots. Arguably the death toll has been highest in single targeted riots.
Second worst riots which independent India saw was gujarat riots 2002 in which muslim community was targeted because vhp car shewaks had got killed in godhra. It was first riot to be covered by news channel and it is one of worst riots that India has ever seen in history.We also saw Christians being targeted in orissa couple of years back.
This brings to important question ‘is communal violence bill necessary?’. After gujarat riots , need for communal violence bill was felt and now government has draft of cvb (communal violence bill) ready to be tabled. While opposition parties have opposed the bill , upa-2′s ally Mamta banerjee too has opposed the bill in present form.
As expected lalu prasad yadav have supported the bill and same backing for the bill is expected from mulayam singh yadav and other politicians who project themselves as champion of secularism.
But is communal violence bill necessary?. Yes and No. Yes there is need of very very strong bill to prevent riots like that of orissa or gujarat or delhi . But bill in present form is far from desirable. It puts majority community as aggressor and sees minority as victims always.
What we need is having zero tolerance policy against any form of communalism . Words dont matter .Whether one is trying to use community or his/her religion or hindutva or secularism as words but if impact is division of society and possibility of hostilness between two communities , it must be dealt with.
What we need is religion separated from governance in letter and spirit. Bill must not have distinction of minority or majority but must see any party/person if threat between communities as threat and must be booked.
Coming to federal nature of our republic , bill does give power to center to intervene , if state fails and I truly support that. If state government is mis using its power to achieve its political goal , center must have right to intervene.But going by history of congress , center government often misuses its power and constitutional posts to meet its own political means. So to safe guard state governments from that , there should be ample measures to do that.
Lastly why divide Indians into hindus, muslims , sikhs , christians , dalits . Why not have strongest possible law to make sure Indians are protected rather than protecting communities. In the end lives lost in riots are Indian lives. Isn’t it?