Challenging Narendra Modi, the chief minister of Gujarat, is worse than challenging Caligula, the diabolical emperor who reigned over the Roman Empire 2000 years ago.
One may wonder why Sanjeev Bhatt IPS chose to challenge Narendra Modi now – nine years after the pogrom conducted by the villainous politician. Bhatt knows very well that he is putting his own and his family’s survival at stake. Narendra Modi is an acknowledged killer. Every literate Indian knows that. An IPS officer like Mr Bhatt should know better than challenge Modi.
A couple of days after throwing the gauntlet at Modi, Mr Bhatt comes up with the complaint that his and his family’s lives are in danger. Any literate Indian would have foreseen that Mr Bhatt’s and his family’s life would be in danger if he dared to question Narendra Modi of Gujarat Empire. Yet why did Mr Bhatt do it? Why did he place himself, and worse, his family, in such peril?
I shall be obliged for an answer.
My own answer is that there are still some people in India who possess a thing called conscience. The conscience pricks. It goes on pricking. How many years will you put up with that pricking? Mr Bhatt got tired of it and came out openly though it would mean risking a lot of lives that are precious to him. That’s heroism, according to me.
I hope Mr Bhatt is not playing politics for the sake of some party like the Congress. God forbid! [If there indeed is a god, that is.]
Why do I think Mr Bhatt is a hero? Mr Bhatt is not coming out with this revelation – the revelation that the pogrom against Muslims in Gujarat in 2002 was orchestrated by Narendra Modi – for the first time. He had done it right from the time of the pogrom. For example, when the Special Investigation Team [SIT] questioned Narendra Modi about the people who attended the “law and order meeting” at his residence on 27 Feb 2002 after his return from Godhra where he had gone to inspect the Sabarmati carnage, Modi said: “Sanjeev Bhatt, the then DC(Int) did not attend, as this was a high-level meeting.” Apparently a very innocuous statement. But you will be surprised to know that the question was not whether Bhatt was present. The question was who were present. Years later, in 2011, Tehelka raised a question about this: “Why did he bring up Bhatt’s name? The inquiry officer had asked him about who was present, not about who was not. Clearly, somebody had alerted Modi about Bhatt’s statement before the SIT. He had come prepared to contradict and discredit Bhatt’s version even when the question posed to him by the SIT officer had no reference to Bhatt.”
The quote is from Tehelka dated 12 Feb 2011. That’s much before the present imbroglio that Bhatt has got into. And remember that the SIT questioning took place much, much before all that.
In short, what I want to say is that Mr Bhatt has not come out just now with some political revelation. He had been saying the same thing right from the time of the pogrom. He was an honest man then. He remains an honest man now.
He remains honest in spite of the fate that awaits him and his family. He remains honest in spite of knowing the fate that another honest person like Haren Pandya met with in Modi’s Gujarat. Pandya was killed mercilessly when he raised a finger against Modi. Pandya deposed before the tribunal against Modi in May 2002 and he was killed in Feb 2003.
Bhatt managed to survive so far with the help of the four guards he had as the Principal of the Police Training College. [Transferring him to that post was not a promotion; it was a political move initiated by Modi.] He was supposed to get Y-category security. But he did not get it. He had arranged four guards. And now it has officially been reduced to just one guard. Modi has started his killing game against Bhatt.
Modi is a killer. I started this article by comparing him with Caligula of Rome. Caligula was converted into a hero by Albert Camus in 20th century in a drama. Camus is a writer whom I admire. Camus’ view was that obsessed by the quest for the Absolute and poisoned by contempt and horror, Caligula tried to exercise, through murder and systematic perversion of all values, a freedom which he discovered in the end was no good. He rejected friendship and love, simple human solidarity, good and evil. In the end, Caligula empowered some of his own people to kill him; he had become so alienated from people and life.
Narendra Modi is the contemporary Caligula. Armed with a diabolic ego, he has been perverting the politics of the country with a passion that knows no good and evil. A terrible fate awaits such people. But Modi may become a hero in some future novel.