NOTE: No, these are not two new IPL franchises. No, this is not even about a cricket match (damn! i lost most of my readership right there).
Now generally I wouldn't have dared to read an 8 page essay in one of those flashy magazines you only see in a doctor's waiting room. and if the author's name sounded like arundhati roy? i would probably have spent my time staring aimlessly at the mosaic tiles on the floor, than flip through it. but when so many articles are written with the sole intention of bashing the living hell out of it, the urge to read the original piece became irresistible.
surprisingly the facts are not what is disputed in this debate. everyone agrees that the mining lobby started exploiting the locals (tribals), the government (politicians + forest/police department officials) being hand in glove with the mining companies (for obvious reasons) did not do much to stop this exploitation, in fact they aided it. at some point in time the tribals took to violence, and became the maoists/naxalits that we hear of in the news everyday. now whether the maoists/naxalists of today represent the majority of tribal people is obviously debatable. but it is pretty clear that the movement started off from among the people.
if these are really the facts (and correct me if I am wrong) then they are believable. what other reason can there be for a people to rise up in arms against an obviously and significantly powerful adversary? other than the possibility of them having gone stark raving mad, that is.
in a democracy everyone has a right to property. but the thing is, they are sitting on a shit load of minerals, which we want. the problem is, they think they don't need anything we can offer. so here is a strong guy who desperately needs something that a weak guy has and is not ready to part with. you only need to remember high school to know what happens next.
a country needs to do whatever it needs to do to maintain law and order throughout its territory. if that means indulging in violence against its own people then as unfortunate as it is, it needs to be done. but lets stop being hypocritical about it. we are _not_ doing any of this (the so called development, getting them into the mainstream, etc.) for the betterment of their lives. we are doing it for our own sakes. they are different and weak. and they are paying the price for that. it is times like these when you really appreciate being in the powerful majority, dont you? :D
so i do the needful. loathe the AK47 slinging maoist, feel sorry for the war ravaged tribal and immediately cuddle up in the snug feeling of power and invincibility that the Constitution of India with all its armies and police provide me. all the while oblivious to the fact that if tomorrow they find a huge oil reserve under my property, and if the country needs oil, i will have a choice to make. either accept the compensation they give and abandon ship or hold my ground and get run over by a tank :P
some choice that !