FB   
 
Powered bysps
        Society for Policy Studies
 
 

 
A Slippery Slope
Posted:May 26, 2017
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 
Indeed, it is likely that this will be seen as a great victory by the fundamentalists
 
So it has finally happened: The statue of Lady Justice has been removed from the Supreme Court premises. The statue has been laden with controversy of late, as Hefazat-e-Islam declared that structure was against Islamic values, and have been agitating for its removal for some time.
 
Taking into account that the holy month of Ramadan is just around the corner, and the looming threat of violence surrounding this issue, we can appreciate how this was an extraordinarily thorny dilemma for the government. Neither can we forget the horrific terror attack at Holey Artisan Bakery last year — that also happened during Ramadan. Given the apparent uptick in terrorist activity that recent militant arrests and busts suggest, the government’s caution on hot button issues is understandable.
 
Thus, if the authorities have determined that the wisest course of action for the sake of public safety and harmony is to remove the statue from the Supreme Court premises, we cannot simply condemn them out of hand. This was undoubtedly a tough decision, and we have no doubt it was made in good conscience with the best of intentions. However, be that as it may, we fear that it might be the first step on a slippery slope to cave in to demands such as these.
 
While the government’s motives can be sympathised with, and their actions understood, on balance, we feel this was a mistake, with the nation standing to lose more in the long run than we can possibly gain in the short from the decision. The concern is that giving in to pressure from fundamentalists will only embolden them further. Not only that, if the government is to make concessions, then it must receive something in return. That is elementary statecraft.
 
It is unclear what, if anything, the government will get in return for this concession. Indeed, it is likely that this will be seen as a great victory by the fundamentalists, who will now only demand more and more, and continue to put further pressure on the government for anything and everything they do not agree with. Appeasing groups that use fear rather than reason is a dangerous road to take. Where do we go from here?
 
 
 
 
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 

Disclaimer: South Asia Monitor does not accept responsibility for the views or ideology expressed in any article, signed or unsigned, which appears on its site. What it does accept is responsibility for giving it a chance to appear and enter the public discourse.
Comments (Total Comments 0) Post Comments Post Comment
Review
 
 
 
 
spotlight image Since Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina assumed office again in Bangladesh in 2009, bilateral relations between New Delhi and Dhaka have been on a steady upward trajectory.
 
read-more
Senior representatives from the US, China, Pakistan and Afghanistan met in Muscat, Oman, on Monday to revive stalled peace talks with the Taliban, but the insurgent group failed to participate in the meeting being held after a year.
 
read-more
Ruskin Bond’s first novel ‘Room on the Roof’ describes in vivid detail how life in the hills around Dehradun used to be. Bond, who is based in Landour, Mussoorie, since 1963, captured the imagination of countless readers as he painted a picture of an era gone by.
 
read-more
India’s foreign policy under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has attained a level of maturity which allows it to assert itself in an effective manner. This is aimed at protecting the country’s national interests in a sustained way.
 
read-more
Braid-chopping incidents have added to the already piled up anxieties of Kashmiris. Once again they are out on the streets, to give vent to their anger. A few persons, believed to be braid-choppers were caught hold by irate mobs at various places. They were beaten to pulp.
 
read-more
China has witnessed great historic changes in the past five years from the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to the upcoming 19th CPC National Congress.
 
read-more
In a move lauded worldwide, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud recently issued a royal decree allowing women to obtain driving licences.
 
read-more
Recently, United States President Donald Trump kicked the onus of the US backing out of the Iran nuclear deal to the US Congress. The question is how we interpret this technically, in terms of domestic politics and in terms of geopolitics.
 
read-more
It is a privilege to be invited to this most prestigious of law schools in the country, more so for someone not formally lettered in the discipline of law. I thank the Director and the faculty for this honour.
 
read-more
Column-image

Title: The People Next Door -The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations; Author: T.C.A. Raghavan; Publisher: HarperCollins ; Pages: 361; Price: Rs 699

 
Column-image

Could the North Korean nuclear issue which is giving the world an anxious time due to presence of hotheads on each side, the invasion of Iraq and its toxic fallout, and above all, the arms race in the teeming but impoverished South Asian subcon...

 
Column-image

Title: A Bonsai Tree; Author: Narendra Luther; Publisher: Niyogi Books; Pages: 227 Many books have been written on India's partition but here is a firsthand account of the horror by a migrant from what is now Pakistan, who ...

 
Column-image

As talk of war and violence -- all that Mahatma Gandhi stood against -- gains prominence across the world, a Gandhian scholar has urged that the teachings of the apostle of non-violence be taken to the classroom.

 
Column-image

Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.

 
Subscribe to our newsletter
Archive