Yesterday 25 of our soldiers were martyred in an ambush by the Maoists at Sukma, Chattisgarh. I hope that god will empower their families to face this dire situation and that the souls of the departed will soon find peace. 

The loss at Sukma is a big one for our country and I doubt if we can cover up for it any time soon.  Maoists in our country have been quite effectively and efficiently dealt with. The November 8 demonetization almost brought an end to the decades of Maoism in our country, however, despite thorough cleansing, some bits still remain to be cleared and these bits are responsible for the deadly Sukma attack. Post attack, the social media was flooded with attacks on the Indian Home Minister for being unable to tackle the Maoists and with requests to the Prime Minister for lethal armed strikes on the Maoists bases to avenge the death of 25 of our army men. It was an evening of national mourning and grieve over the incident could be felt in the air. 

Amidst all chaos one rare thing happened. Political leaders of all political parties expressed their sorrow over the incident and declared their solidarity with the army men. Some of them even demanded action against the Maoists. I was glad to see this rare show of political unity but was at the same time shocked to see the hypocrisy of many of these leaders. Hypocrisy because months ago many of these leaders and their political youth wings were spotted supporting those who were advocating for the freedom of Bastar (another maoist hit area only 108.8 kms from Sukma ) at Ramjas college of Delhi university. 

Who should we blame for the attack is a million dollar question. Almost all would say that the people who attacked the army convoy are responsible but I believe that the scope of this blame should spread much wider than that. Though those who shot bullets were directly responsible but those who have been supporting these men all along and who might not have been behind the AK-47s (which include professors, research scholars, journalists, news anchors, political leaders, authors, lawyers and many more) are equally responsible for this gruesome attack and in my opinion such people neither have the privilege to express their condolences nor the right to question our Home Minister’s inaction. Our 25 soldiers might have been killed to the bullets of the Maoists but their souls were tortured by the chants of “बस्तर मांगे आज़ादी (Bastar demands freedom)” by none but privileged educated students of elite institutes. We are turning into a nation of hypocrites, on one hand we march along those who demand action against army personnel for alleged human rights violations in Maoist regions and on the other hand we demand action against Maoists for ambushing our ‘beloved’ soldiers. 

What further irks me is the shallowness of our sorrows. The hypocrisy behind our fluctuating stands also reveals our insincerity towards any particular side. Also, the death of a soldier has become such a routine occurrence that it barely affects us to the core anymore. We feel to have fulfilled our duty towards those who gladly take bullets defending us by merely posting our condolences on social media. Social media has become the furthest extent of our support. I personally believe that our martyrs deserve a lot more than a mere Facebook or twitter post. 

I believe that the first and the most important step towards ending hypocrisy and deepening our support would be choosing a side in a war. We need to begin by deciding whom do we support, why and up to what point and extent. We need to decide whether to stand with those who have been taking bullets to defend us or with those who for nothing more than their personal and political gains are creating ruckus in our country. The next step would be, standing firmly with our decision until our set limits aren’t crossed and until our belief in our choice is not shaken. These two steps, if followed by each one of us would not only make our country free of hypocrites but would also make it safe, secure and peaceful.


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