26/11 Anniversary And The Constitution Day

Today is 26/11. Tenth anniversary of the horrible 2008 Mumbai attacks in which a 10 terrorists of Lashkar-e-Taiba, an Islamic terrorist organisation based in Pakistan, carried out a series of 12 coordinated shooting and bombing attacks lasting four days across Mumbai. More than 170 people died and several got injured. 

It was the worst terrorist attack on India since the attack on Indian Parliament in 2001. 

And as usual there was plenty of politics played over this “event”. 

I remember the then Chief Minister and now the Pradhan Sevak of India, Narendra Modi had visited Mumbai immediately after the attack and took a press conference on 27th Nov 2008 criticizing the state and the central government. He was the same person who later criticized people and media when similar visits were paid by his opposition parties in subsequent mishaps, terrorist attacks. He said that it lowered the morale of the security forces and boosted enemy’s confidence. Well, the same was not true for his own visit after 26/11.

Anyways, it’s time to remember the brave soldiers and people who sacrificed their lives and saved us! It’s also time to ask ourselves if we are any more secure now, or better equipped to handle such attack or threat or calamity. The broad answer is: “NO”.

Several things have improved since 26/11. For example, the Force One or upgrade of Police forces and the technology they use etc. However no one can claim that we are far more secure, or better prepared, as a society. 

While we remember 26/11 as the day of ghastly Mumbai attack, we should not forget that 26/11 also happens to be the Constitution Day!

This was a day when we, the people of India gifted ourselves the constitution of India in 1949 and it came into effect from 26th January 1950 (hence 26th Jan is the Republic Day). Here is the latest version of the Constitution of India Preamble.

And here is the original version of the Preamble, without the 42nd amendment in 1976 which added words “socialist secular”.

 

Addition of words “socialist secular” is another big controversy, which is worth more scholarly debate and suitable action, rather than other “burning” issues such as Ram Mandir in Ayodhya (which may actually result in burning people).

Personally, I feel that the amendment in 1976 was unnecessary and “social secular” words can be removed. Remember that the amendment was done during the Emergency.

However I am surprised that the present ruling party is not serious enough to push for this change. Or may be it helps their political agenda too. To keep highlighting it and create ruckus. 

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