Reactions to Hafiz Saeed! by Rajinder Puri SignUp

In Focus

Photo Essays


Random Thoughts

Our Heritage


Society & Lifestyle


Creative Writings

Book Reviews
Literary Shelf
Analysis Share This Page
Reactions to Hafiz Saeed!
by Dr. Rajinder Puri Bookmark and Share

Veteran journalist Mr. Ved Prakash Vedic as member of a Track-2 team visiting Pakistan broke away from his colleagues to interview the head of the pro-terrorist organization, Jamaat-u-Dawa, Hafiz Saeed. When this came to light there was uproar in parliament and on TV channels. The reactions to this event are amusing.

Mr. Vedic justified his conduct by asserting that as a professional journalist he met Hafiz Saeed in order to better understand the mind of this terrorist mastermind. There was nothing unexceptionable about that. Evaluation of his conduct may be withheld until the contents of his interview become public. There is nothing wrong in aggressively debating with an enemy. After all, when Pakistan journalist Hamid Mir obtained an interview with Osama bin Laden it was considered a journalistic coup of sorts.

The reactions of the Congress and other opposition leaders were predictable. They highlighted Mr. Vedic’s links with the BJP government, with Baba Ramdev and the RSS. They tried to corner the government by asserting that Mr. Vedic’s meeting could not have been held without sanction by the government. This too may be dismissed as part of politics and the attempt to embarrass the government and score debating points. This is understandable political activity. The BJP responded by recalling the comparatively muted response when Kashmir separatist leader Mr. Yasin Malik jointly fasted with Hafiz Saeed. The BJP also asked if the Track-2 team led by Congress leader Mr. Mani Shankar Aiyer which included former Foreign Minister Mr. Salman Khurshid was oblivious of team colleague Mr. Vedic’s activities in Pakistan and could therefore be absolved of responsibility.

All these reactions do not merit much attention. What intrigued this writer was the intense passion that the mere mention of Hafiz Saeed aroused among both politicians and several TV anchors. He was described as the epitome of villainy, responsible for the 26/11 terror attack, and any association with him was deemed to be an unforgivable lapse. This writer sympathizes with the passion displayed by politicians and TV journalists. The rage against Hafiz Saeed is understandable. What cannot be understood is the curious lapse of memory and attention regarding other aspects involving Hafiz Saeed which are blissfully ignored by India’s thinking class.

The case against Hafiz Saeed for masterminding the 26/11 terror attack was substantially aided and strengthened by inputs made available by the US FBI to Indian authorities. The evidence offered by FBI was accepted because of its high professional reputation as an investigative agency. What greatly puzzles this writer is the total absence of passion or even interest displayed by the same politicians and TV journalists after the FBI investigated the role of Hafiz Saeed in the Samjhauta Train terror attack. Based on its investigation the US government nailed Hafiz Saeed as a terrorist mastermind, identifying his five accomplices carrying out his orders for the attack, and even moved the United Nations to designate Saeed as an international terrorist and imposed UN sanctions against him.

In contrast India’s National Investigative Agency (NIA) ignored the FBI findings and the UN sanctions to charge Hindu terrorists led by Swami Aseemanand for the Samjhauta Train blast. One has no sympathies for the politics of Swami Aseemanand or an interest in rebutting allegations by Indian sleuths regarding the Swami’s role in other terror attacks such as the Malegaon blast. But how on earth can both the Hindu terrorists and Hafiz Saeed be responsible for the same terror attack on the Samjhauta Express? One is intrigued therefore not by the passion displayed by politicians and media against Hafiz Saeed related to 26/11, but its complete absence with regard to the train blast.

That is not all. It may be noted that both Indian politicians and media quite rightly never fail to castigate the Pakistan army and ISI for supporting Hafiz Saeed. But the same politicians and media hacks maintain deafening silence when it comes to holding China responsible for exercising its UN veto to prevent the world body from imposing international sanctions against Hafiz Saeed. How is Beijing’s conduct any different from Pakistan in protecting Hafiz Saeed? Attacking the actions of Hafiz Saeed is understandable. Doing it selectively and opportunistically is not.

Share This:
More by :  Dr. Rajinder Puri
Top | Analysis
Views: 1340      Comments: 8

Comments on this Article

Comment Sir, I have been reserving my comments even to myself in the matter, because I felt nonplussed in a matter of India's sovereignty and security and Indian citizen's right to life, most fundamental of all rights in any civilized society. The matter of Kashmir can not be discussed by any unauthorized person in a foreign land, what to talk about a suspected terrorist/ one who is suspected to have abated terrorism. Sometimes, journalists take undue freedom in deed and expression, creating problems for society. Much as many journalists are creating fume and other journalists pooh-poohing the matter, it is not a question of two political parties, it is much too serious a matter. Vedic should come clear by admitting his fault (could be inadvertant by any means) or explaining to Indians at large. No doubt, he has put his foot in the mouth. I am both aghast and sorry for him.

07/18/2014 06:47 AM

Comment Mr.Puri`s article is an excellent story of Indian politics, especially the Congress Party -- how hell-bent those crooks are to blame the Hindus and the BJP.
Well, finally blaming the Samjautha Express bombing, and all other riots as the dirty work of the HIndu communalists boomeranged.
This blog was very interesting and informative.
Thanks for another good article.
Jai HInd. Bande Mataram

Buddha D.Rudra
07/17/2014 14:50 PM

Comment Sir,

I better name the new channel here -

I was amazed to see the kind of forceful opinion thrust being adopted by Times Now news channel from day-1 (from Tuesday I suppose).

I did not understand why this news channel cut short any opinion of the debate panel that lead to moderate the attack on Mr. Vedic.

Just as the debate started on Tuesday, within 2-3 mins it was clear that Times Now channel had open up that show with determination to take discussion in one direction.

I FAIL TO UNDERSTAND WHY AND HOW NEWS CHANNELs CAN be so persuasive about certain sides !!

Dinesh Kumar Bohre
07/17/2014 08:41 AM

Comment Sir, the name is Vaidik and not Vedic. You have rightly slammed the opposition--disrupting Parliament is becoming more of a perfunctory exercise than taking the Govt to task on serious issues. However, one cannot view Hamid Mir interviewing Osama in the same context as Pakistanis consider Osama a martyr, contrary to global perceptions, earning Mir the laurels. Don't agree with you that the Indian media maintains a "deafening silence" on China blocking action against Pak at the UN. The patriotic, vibrant media would definitely live up to the expectations of the masses whenever required and painting all of them with the same brush of cynicism is uncalled for.

07/17/2014 04:55 AM

Comment Congrats to your time to time hammering for people to wake up and come out from the hallocination of US FBI drowsy doses...with analysis i'm sure for better chances of exposing out truths & baring their masks off their skin.

farhat farooqui
07/17/2014 02:22 AM

Comment Once again, Mr. Madathitnair, I have never taken sides. My criticism of Congress, BJP and Left over the decades should tell you that -- provided you are at all familiar with my views. However I advise you to stop being imprisoned by one side so firmly that you are incapable of meeting criticism without ascribing motives or bias. I say this for your own good. Lack of honest introspection is the surest formula for wrong assessments and failure.

My Word
07/17/2014 01:57 AM

Comment Good. Balanced. You have stopped taking sides. I had expected you to pillory Vedik and the BJP. All said and done, Vedik had no business to talk to Saeed. Thanks for bringing in the Chinese angle.

07/17/2014 01:33 AM

Comment One of your best analyses.

07/16/2014 20:46 PM

Name *
Email ID
 (will not be published)
Comment *
Verification Code*
Can't read? Reload
Please fill the above code for verification.
1999-2022 All Rights Reserved
No part of this Internet site may be reproduced without prior written permission of the copyright holder