1 Broken Scooter, 4 Iron Cots, 1 Used Ford, 3 Cats, and 1 Small Room

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Rohit Singh
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Tue, 07 Mar 2006

Just Stop It

They bombed my hometown. They hit the Sankat Mochan temple on its busiest time of the week- Tuesday evening. They then set off a bomb in the city's transportation center. A third blast was to be, if they had gotten their way, in Benares' oldest and most-crowded market. Really, they had thought it through quite well. It's a miracle that the number of people dead isn't higher.

It's funny how hard something halfway around the world can hit you; one just needs to be able to visualize the death and destruction. I've been to each of the places that was bombed many times. It's not hard to imagine a guy, tired from a long day's work, stopping by the temple for his weekly prayers with a small box of laddoos. The laddoos around Sankat Mochan are fabulous. Maybe he's looking forward to taking some of the laddoos home to his kids who love them. The guy left his slippers at the temple entrance and is worried if they'll still be there when he's back. His wife will give him hell if they are stolen again. During all this the poor fellow has no idea that he's going to die, through no fault of his own. He's probably more worried about the monkeys in the temple compound attacking him for the laddoos. He needn't have worried about the monkeys. Even the monkeys won't go for laddoos stained red.

The hon'ble Prime Minister "condemned the attack and immediately called for calm." The main opposition party satisfied itself with a demand for the government's resignation. The Benares MP flew to Delhi to register his anger with the powers that be. Really, why do we even bother! Let's replace these guys by tape recorders. We know what they are going to say, and it's not as if they'll do anything.

Before you jump on the bandwagon of it's the System's Fault, it's not. The fault in this case, as in all terrorism cases, lies squarely with the perpetrators. It's not the police's fault that this happened. Nobody can lock down a city of 3 million indefinitely. It is the terrorists' fault. Let's not forget that. It's the terrorists who need to be found, tried and hung. Or just shot summarily. I'll take that too.

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