When equity demands that one must grant even the devil its due, it would be grossly unfair to deny the exorcists their share. In any case, they would seek to themselves apportion their share of credit, which is truly a lion’s share of detractors and cynics, even if they happen to be allies and venture to get uncharitable. And for a responsive, responsible and a restless CM, it is next to impossible to let insinuations pass unanswered. Like a torrent it came yesterday in Assembly, in all its pristine deceptive rhetoric in retort to a member’s snide on the DMK leader having developed cold feet in these hot days.
To be sure, Chief Minister Karunanidhi knows no fear, be it Emergency or Art 356 or even a cocktail of both. The advent of a BJP government with the support of his arch enemy, at the Centre has failed to dilute his courage and the relentless battering by his political foes have miserably fallen short of scaring him. When everyone from a child to a giant dreads darkness, even the State’s return to the dark ages, thanks to the man from Arcot’s power-play, has left the CM unfazed. Neither does the agitating teachers’ promise to spoil his birthday deter him from going ahead with the bash nor does the opposition’s proposed stir for his government’s dismissal instill in him any apprehensions about his regime’s longevity. In short, rain or cloud, storm or dust, heat or humidity, TMC or no MAC and of course, in tune with the latest trends, sanctions or no sanctions, the rising sun would continue to shine, brighter and brighter, come what may. Blessed are we, the compulsive devotees of the Sun god to be under the fearless benevolence of the self-respecting, sole Thaanai Thalaivan.
One cannot, of course, blame the errant MLA for mistaking the CM’s meaningful, calculated silence on some issues as an indication of cold feet. Even we, the survivors of the flourishing bomb civilisation, are sometimes led to believe so, that is, till yesterday when the CM’s exposition of his fearless self reassured us. For instance, the unprecedented extension of the current Assembly session was mistaken by all and sundry as a ploy provoked by fears of dismissal. Also, the banning of the fundamentalist outfits, immediately after the blasts and the subsequent flushing out of bombs and bombers, was not prompted by fear but out of concern for the safety of the people. It is purely an aberration that such concern was missing before the bomb blasts even after being tipped off, but blame it on a careless CoP, The fearless CM had done his duty.
The present relentless war and the continuing arrests of terrorists, who were coincidentally begging to be arrested with their identities flashing like neon signs to be seen by all except the authorities even before the blasts, are once again a demonstration of the CM’s will and courage to come down on the law breakers, albeit after they have broken the law. Only the naive would think that the present pursuit of Ayeshas is borne out of a fear of getting knocked out on counts of deteriorating law and order. It would be apt to remind them, as the CM does so often as if it were a mantra, that the Home minister, who wields the L&O stick, is alive today because of the fearless CM’s bold initiatives on the security front. Once again, such reminders should not be mistaken to have been dictated out of fear or as an appeal to the HM’s gratuity in expectation of a good turn by him. Rather it reflects the CM’s concern for future Home Ministers. Of the sixty who perished, well, they were simply not fated to become Home Ministers.
Had the CM had any sense of fear; would he have pioneered and perfected the art of pillage to scientific precision, as chronicled by a Judge called Sarkaria? When the whole world dreads the LTTE, did not our CM prove to his countrymen that he can defy such universal ‘cowardice’ by openly hobnobbing with them? After all, does it not call for an unlimited gall and gumption to allow such mighty militants unmitigated access and roomspace in the State under their dispensation, even when that group was a declared enemy of the nation? Did not the CM and his party of Dravidian yore, in the name of ethnic and linguistic affinity, fearlessly espouse the cause of a greater land, with himself as the undisputed leader, in the face of being branded secessionists? Once again, would the CM, in keeping with an election promise, have released several proclaimed offenders who were imprisoned on considerations of national security, had he entertained even an iota of fear about their mischief potential?
And when you and I, shake like a leaf at the very mention of the name of the moustached brigand, had not the CM and his satellite co-borns exhibited enormous courage in articulating the aspirations of the bandit? Will faint-hearted wimps and weak-kneed sissies ever think of bringing ruthless bandits into their midst? But our rulers are a fearless lot who have no qualms about dealings with the fearful lot. No wonder, whenever a DMK regime takes charge, the underworld too surfaces with impunity…fearlessly.
We, the prajas of those fearless rajas should also brook no fear. Even if the prospect of live bombs lying underneath is a permanent possibility. There is no fun in experiencing daily death out of fear of bombs going off. And if the bombs do go off and if we turn corpses, then there is no question of ever experiencing fear. Remember the CM’s script? Death is inevitable, so what if it is at six or sixty? So fear not, my countrymen, when Surlas slip out of bathroom windows or when Ayeshas remain at large, or even if Veerappans join your mainstream. If still fear stalks you, reassure yourself by recalling the CM’s inspiring speech or better still, take a stroll down Marina beach.
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