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Third World Face Of India, Bangladesh

Apart from the famished faces of naked children and the unhygienic and open nullahs with no toilet facilities, another very prominent factor that links the third world countries is the large scale corruption and the presence of a brutal regime or a brutal police department. India is now counted among the countries to watch out for, given its vast population as well as the presence of cheap but skilled labor. India is definitely one of the factors for the furor kicked up over the business outsourcing system which has led to many American citizens without a job.

In other words, multinational companies find it more convenient and of course more profitable to hire skilled labor who can communicate with English and India offers one of the best destinations for such companies. That India now ranks among the countries to be reckoned with in terms of its economic potential can be easily gauged by the fact that US President Barack Obama, who was here on a three day visit, started his sojourn with a 10 billion dollar business deal. This is something which has not happened in the history of Independent India and is a clear reflection of her growing stature amongst the comity of Nations. Obama showing an interest in the Nano, the world’s cheapest car, is an indicator of things to come in the future.

This is one side of India, which takes immense pride in calling itself the largest democracy in the world, yet there are still many, many characteristics of its erstwhile third world identity, that continue to define the India of today. Corruption ranks high on the agenda of everyone concerned, but nobody has done anything worthwhile to root this out or keep it under control. There is no need to mention the persons responsible for this rot. Apart from corruption, what makes India look like a version of a Sierra Leone or a Uganda is the presence of a brutal police force. And as any keen observer would have noticed, it is the cops in the third world who can easily be influenced by money or simply put, who rank high on the corrupt list.

India has assumed different avatars and different routes since the day it began its tryst with destiny on August 15, 1947. If India takes pride in not only being the largest democracy in the world and as one of the few countries, which has never gone the way of either a Pakistan, a Bangladesh or a Myanmar, on the other hand, its brutal side stand exposed in all its glory and this may come in many forms and under different names. The Armed Forces Special Powers Act is one such legislation, which has shown the brutal face of India to the world.

Even without this Act, the uniformed personnel are not always seen as a force to be trusted and relied upon to deliver the goods or ensure justice. More often than not, policemen, especially the westernized sounding class, called police commandos, (At least in Manipur) have earned a dubious and notorious reputation down the years. It is not only about what happened on July 23 at BT Road in 2009, but other similar cases, which were not caught on lens and of course corruption. Imagine a petty official like a Sub-Inspector, building a mansion, that would be the envy of any average businessman or something which the middle class can only dream of.

We have cited these reasons, for no one can write off the attributes of what we have associated with the policemen of third world countries and remember UNLF Chairman; RK Meghen was arrested on September 29 from Dhaka. Bangladesh, by any standard, fits the description or attributes of a third world country and this itself is an indication that its cops must also be corrupt, very corrupt.  With big brother, India, leading the way by example, there is everything to suspect that all the brutal attributes of the men in uniform in India, have been picked up, adjusted to the local conditions and implemented by the cops in Bangladesh.

It is in the hands of such elements or policemen, aided by agents of the Research and Analysis Wing that RK Meghen has fallen into. A rebel leader getting captured on a foreign soil should not come as a surprise to the people. Remember Th Muivah landing in a Thai jail in the beginning part of this century for possessing false documents or gangster Abu Salem and his companion, Monica Bedi, who were hauled up by the police in Belgium some years back?

However there is a big difference in the case of Meghen and the other two cases we have mentioned. The Thai police did not treat the arrest of Muivah as classified information that should not come to the public domain. So did the Belgium police. September 29 was the date that Meghen was arrested and subsequently disappeared. The overriding point of concern or should we say angst of the people of Manipur over the casual manner of both Dhaka and Delhi is rising with each passing day. Not everyone in Manipur sees Meghen as a hero or identify themselves with his ideology and methods, but cases of disappearance in custody are just too frequent and go against all the norms and ethics of democracy.

Recall Sanamacha, L Bijoykumar, Lokendro and others whose names we cannot recall at this moment and one will come to the realization that it is not only a case of human rights violation but also is a clear indication of how Delhi has been able to influence Dhaka to keep its mouth shut and in the process, become a partner in a sinister design. Today it is not a question of a rebel leader getting arrested, but a question of how long Delhi will and can continue with its subterfuge policy with regard to Manipur.

The decision of quite a large number of social organizations to boycott the visit of Sonia Gandhi on November 12 is just the tip of the iceberg. By all accounts, Delhi has exposed itself as a fool, which does not know how to capitalize on an opportunity. No wonder, despite the new India, there more poor people in this country than some of the worst off African countries and people starve while food grains rot away in the Government’s godown.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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