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And the stones are pelted again at the Gandhi family; this time Rahul Gandhi becomes victim of hooliganism
On Friday, the car of Vice President of Indian National Congress – the son, the grandson and the great grandson of three Prime Ministers of India, Rahul Gandhi was hit with stones in Gujarat.

In the time gone by, in the first week of February, 1967, at Bhubaneswar, our beloved Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was also struck in the face by a stone at a turbulent election meeting. It was a painful sight as a few minutes later she left the meeting bleeding from the nose. While Mrs Gandhi was speaking at a whistle stop, about 20 or 30 young men kept throwing stones at the rostrum and shouting and jeering. She was hit just after she shouted to the crowd: "Will you vote for hooligans who do things like this?" A few stones hit the rostrum during Mrs Gandhi's speech. They became a barrage when she ended and Orissa state leaders rose to speak. She had refused to sit at the back of the dais and with a determined look on her face sat right at the front. She leaped to the microphone to shout her condemnation of hooliganism just before she was hit. She staggered back clasping her face but remained on the rostrum until security men forced her to withdraw. Doctors who examined Mrs Gandhi said later she was suffering from injuries to the membrane of her nose and a bruised upper lip but was in good spirits. Despite the injury, she decided to continue her campaign with a rally the next day in Patna, the capital city of Bihar state.

Political violence is one of the most disturbing problems we are faced with even today. In fact, the political violence manifests itself more in societies where political institutions are not sufficiently capable of dealing with socio-economic disparities and other grievances. But even in relatively egalitarian societies with stable systems where the well-developed political institutions are available, we can observe this phenomenon. The nature and causes of violence may differ from place to place and culture to culture. It depends, among others, on the nature of political institutions evolving in the country.

In India, we have witnessed a variety of violent attitudes since independence. However, in a civilized society, even an isolated incident is as good a too many. Off late, in the present climate of violent majoritarian assertion inspired by RSS juggernaut, where existing provisions of law seem to achieve little, and the country is flooded with a spate of brutal lynching and attacks on minorities, there is no light visible at the end of the tunnel. No one can deny here that the best of laws can't achieve much if the law enforcement machinery is tamed to do the bidding of the political masters. All that gory drama would stop just now if the State is seriously interested to act against it.

According to the data website 'IndiaSpend' 97 per cent of these attacks took place after the BJP government came to power in May 2014. About 86 per cent of those killed were Muslims. And add insult to injury, in 21 per cent of cases, the police filed the cases against the victims/survivors.

Mob violence is a living reality of our life and it is only a matter of time and chance, where and when it would erupt abruptly. We have become used to a life where citizens are killed in Kerala or Bengal or UP or elsewhere in the country regularly.

Rahul Gandhi is lucky that he has escaped unhurt as his vehicle was attacked with stones during his visit to Dhanera town of Banaskantha district on Friday.

Unconfirmed initial reports suggest that a person from his staff had received minor injuries in stone pelting incident that saw glass in the backseat of the car shattered.
The Congress on its part has criticized the incident calling it the handiwork of a few "pervert" minds.

"Innumerable people had gathered here to meet Rahul ji. In times of distress, when a leader visits to express his sympathy with the people, the BJP workers played politics and first waved black flags and then attacked the car of Rahul ji. This is a failure of BJP government and shows the frustration and arrogance. This is a sad instance," Himanshu Patel, Congress leader, said.

He was shown black flags when he was addressing the gathering of people at Lal Chowk area of Dhanera. Though Rahul said that the people showing black flags were scared or nervous, he was there to show that Congress party stood with the people. He also said that "it hardly makes any difference to me". However, as chants of 'Modi Modi' began to rise, he cut short his visit and moved out of the venue.

It is a vicious cycle where the game can no longer be called as a game of musical chairs. It is a shower of bricks.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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