Guest Post by Sharib Ali
With a finality that only history possesses, Yakub Abdul Razak Menon, an accused in the Bombay blast case, has transformed for many over the last few days, including me, into just Yakub. His name pronounced with a deep felt sadness that has come to characterize so many of our days. Days leading to terrible, terrible nights.
It is indeed sad, when a criminal -a sauve 20 year old looking for a way out- is, in death, turned into a rallying symbol of injustice. Flowing white beard, and a bloated body, suddenly turned around into an idea draped in flowers, garlanded, and marched on the shoulders of thousands of men through narrow streets- in complete silence. There were whispers, though, in the sweltering heat of bodies. But the pact was made. There would be no sloganeering. The state was there- to keep peace, no less. And it did what it does best: lined the streets with policemen. The policemen were out there defending a strange paradox: That it is right to kill to punish those who kill, so that others are deterred from killing. Stithi niyantran mein hai, still, they said. The rest, were silent.