Friday, December 11, 2009

Rights Double Standard

Every year when the world observes Human Rights Day on December 10, in this part of the world one is unfailingly witness to a gamut of human rights groups condemn the state for its utter disregard of human rights and their flagrant violations in different ways — implying state terrorism. No grumble, this. State terrorism is the forte of banana republics or dictatorial regimes. Democratic societies have no place for, and ought not to tolerate, state terrorism. However, how about the same rights champions decrying human rights violations by terrorists too, including those masquerading as ‘insurgents’ — of which in Assam there is no dearth? For instance, the Manab Adhikar Sangram Samity (MAAS), an Assam-based human rights body, routinely castigates the government for having been party to human rights violations in the State. But why the stoic silence on the open  and sadistic killing of innocent men, women and children by terror outfits? Has the MASS ever decried the ULFA for human rights violations of an unarmed and defenceless citizenry? And if the rights group has ever protested the ULFA variety of terror and rights violations, how strong and credible has it been? It is not without reason that many human rights groups are branded fake or mere frontal chapters of underground organizations with a vested interest in the industry of ‘insurgency’. THE SENTINEL

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