Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
“The poor and the deprived people revolt” when “manifest injustices of all forms perpetrated against the weak”, the Supreme Court of India had observed in what is famous as “Salwa Judam” judgment. It had held, “People do not take up arms, in an organized fashion, against the might of the State, or against fellow human beings without rhyme or reason. Guided by an instinct for survival, and according to Thomas Hobbes, a fear of lawlessness that is encoded in our collective conscience, we seek an order. However, when that order comes with the price of dehumanization, of manifest injustices of all forms perpetrated against the weak, the poor and the deprived people revolt… … …”
But the very same fellows who have never condemned Nathuram Godse for having cold-bloodedly murdered Mahatma Gandhi, while demanding death for killers of so-called Swami and Saraswati Laxmananand, whose acts of religious revivalism had breached communal harmony in Kandhamal in such acrimonious velocity that a mayhem had to get rid of him at the cost of peace and tranquility in that beloved land of tribal magnanimity, have been condemning the “the poor and the deprived people” when they “revolt’, their leadership that the Naxals/Maoists constitute.
Laxmananand’s extinguishment forms the crux of a Judicial Enquiry headed presently by a former Judge of Orissa High Court, Justice Naidu. Yet, the Godse admirers and their allies in the pro-rich administration – always eager to perpetrate State-terrorism on progressive people – are one in condemning the opponents of caste-divide in Hindu society in general and Orissa’s icon of modern revolution Sabyasachi Panda in particular, for the homicidal death of the Hindu sectarian leader who was executing a mission of conversion of vulnerable people from other religions to Hindu, oblivious of how Indian Constitution was being denuded of its spirit thereby, even though the commission of enquiry is yet to find out who really was responsible for the death of Laxmananand.
It may so happen, if the Commission of Enquiry acts without any bias, Justice Naidu, who has wanted Sabysachi Panda to be produced before him for study of his role, if any, in the murder and its environment he is inquiring into, may held Laxmananand responsible for his own death.
But, the Godseites have been trying to obstruct the process of free thinking of Justice Naidu by shrouding the Judicial Commission with clouds of libretto that the Naxala/Maoists are criminals.
Had it been so, people would never have punished Manmohan Singh
There was a Prime Minister of India in Manmohan Singh whose Americanism was so shamelessly anti-Nasxals that the people of India have avenged their ruin by throwing his party to such filthy depth of the dustbin of electoral politics that the Congress, despite all its cries before its party-planted President, has been rightly found too stoutly rejected by the people to claim the post of the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, had described the left revolutionaries as “left viruses”. People have punished him and the Congress for this nasty conduct, though in their anxiety to get rid of the Congress they had become so rash that they are yet to extricate themselves from another set-up of supporters of FDI in India, which the middleclass opportunists and ultra-high-rich combine, has brought into power in a climate of conglomeration of rich media and religious revivalism. Lest the Supreme Judiciary, known for its free thinking so far, becomes a hurdle, the new set-up has already taken steps to make it easier for the pro-rich elements entering into the high benches. Yet, it looks pertinent to see what the Naxals are in the wisdom of the supreme Judiciary.
In the eyes of the Supreme Judiciary
In trying to locate the reasons of the growth of Naxal movement, wherein tribal youths are conspicuous by their participation, the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, in ‘Nandini Sundar v. State of Chhattisgarh’ (AIR 2011 SC 2839), have noted: “Many of these tribal youngsters, on account of the violence perpetrated against them, or their kith and kin and others in the society in which they live, have already been dehumanized. To have feelings of deep rage, and hatred, and to suffer from the same is a continuation of the condition of dehumanization. The role of a responsible society, and those who claim to be concerned of their welfare, which the State is expected to under our Constitution, ought to be one of creating circumstances in which they could come back or at least tread the path towards normalcy, and a mitigation of their rage, hurt, and desires for vengeance” (Para 52).
At Para 71 the Court further observed, “As we remarked earlier, the fight against Maoist/Naxalite violence cannot be conducted purely as a mere law and order problem to be confronted by whatever means the State can muster. The primordial problem lies deep within the socio-economic policies pursued by the State on a society that was already endemically, and horrifically, suffering from gross inequalities”.
In the eyes of the Father of Indian Constitution
“We must remove the contradiction (this gross inequality) at the earliest possible moment or else those who suffer from inequality will blow up the structure of political democracy which this Assembly has so laboriously built up”, Dr. Ambedkar, father of the Constitution had warned while replying to the last debates on the draft Constitution (Constituent Assembly Debates, Volume 8, p.279).
The Supreme Court, in their observation quoted above had to so observe, as the gross inequality between the Indians divided in two parts – the meager numbers of the rich and the massive numbers of the poor – instead of being removed, has become more savagely severe.
As Naxal/Maoist movement has grown against this background, agents of imperialism in power have made rigorous laws like Act No 15 of 2002 that equates the Naxal/Maoists with terrorist and applies the Act to them with retrospective effect.
But, by enactment of this act, the Supreme Court verdict cited supra is not denuded of its wisdom and Dr. Ambedkar’s words of their wise relevance.
Human conscience cannot be suppressed by Laws of Intimidation, whosoever in power frames and enforces them.
Revolutionaries were there, who brought us freedom.
Revolutionaries are there who dare State-terror to bring us emancipation.
Revolutionaries will be there, on whom shall depend people’s liberation from the yokes of exploitation.
And, in true judicial wisdom, not the exploiters, but the ones suffering for saving the people from exploitation, shall always have the right place of importance.
Therefore, despite draconian Laws equating politico-economic revolutionaries with cross-border and communal terrorists, in Judicial wisdom, as per Justice K. S. Ahluwallia of Calcutta High Court. “Naxalism or Maoism is a political movement wedded to violence and the participants thereof are political offenders”, not criminals.
Interpretation of Laws in various Courts by various Judges may differ, but judicial wisdom uttered in cases of politico-economic relevance, such as the ‘Salwa Judam’ and ‘Political prisoners’ cases, cannot be viewed as anything but expressed wisdom in matter of social and politico-economic developmental perspective.
One is to decide how to read between the lines.