Sunday Musings: Freedom versus Security: The boundaries of Democracy need to be defined
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The recent incidents where people and lobbyists protested against some of the government bills and proposals raises more questions than what meets the eyes. First and foremost can democracy be allowed for citizens to stage mass protests holding the capitol at ransom, blocking roads and other means of communication and essential goods, vegetables etc. We are sure that many will speak such protests as must for democratic values to be upheld and to which we also agree. To allow citizens protest and opinion is an important criterion for any free and vibrant democracy.
But then there is another part to it. With the news coming that China and Pakistan are also involved in the farmers protest it makes the whole case quite different. No matter how good and fair is one’s case, Nation comes first and no one can be allowed to play with the security of the country. This is our point that we wish to throw to our readers. We have also seen how the Canadian PM Truedeav has interfered in the farmers’ protest and how international media is also giving time to it.
Keeping aside the merits and demerits of the farmers protest and for that matter the previous Shaheen Bagh protests we are of the opinion that Delhi cannot be allowed to be made into an unsecured capital and city. With such mass protests and citizens occupying key spots it is difficult for any security agencies to keep a track of the developments. Enemies can slip terrorists and can foment violence and disturb peace. There can be a whole lot of things that can happen and we shudder at the thought of it. Moreover such activities will be happening under the cover of Peaceful protests. Any government of the day will be under tremendous pressure to convince the international media and leaders.
This is like the Trojan horse where the Greeks were fooled by a horse driven vehicle which was camouflage. to take the enemy by surprise. Similar tactics were used recently by China when it came all along the borders with aggression and showing her true colours.
The point we are trying to raise is that democracy can become a very soft target for enemies who are authoritarian in nature. The government has to think of policies to make the capital more secure and less vulnerable. All such protests must be given space outside the capital and the city has to be sufficiently safeguarded.
We request the government to call an all party meeting at some point of time and discuss these issues with facts and data of foreign nationals involvement and conspiracy. The government can also try to get public opinion in their favour. The manner in which Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and Yogendra Yadav have tried to use such protests for their own political purposes also tells that Delhi cannot be made scapegoat to individual political ambitions. There is enough space in Haryana and Noida area for people coming from outside to protest.
Dr Asheesh Shah