The very next day after the NDFB chief Ranjan Daimary was produced in the CJM court, in Guwahati, I got a call from my office to do a story with an alert that a mail has been forwarded to me to follow the story line. The story was about Ranjan Daimary,s arrest but I was shocked to see the name of Kasav the accused of Mumbai attack being dragged into the story. So what was the relation between Kasav and Ranjan Daimary? It was too simple that Kasav in the initial stage did not had a lawyer to defend him and the Assam Lawyers association had also decided not to fight for Ranjan Daimary, because he is the chief accused of the 30th October blast and one of the blast was inside the court premises that killed lawyers and thus a parallel was drawn. Perhaps no one had ever thought in their wildest dreams about relating Kasav while talking about Ranjan Daimary and the 30th October Blast untill the media had tried to build a relation between two person of two different countries in respect to different sentiments shared by the people and even by the government. Some national media got interested to get the ready made story line, “Ranjan Daimary is Assam’s Kasav” and started following the story giving the Kasav angle. What message are we trying to send to the people across the country and the world about the BODO community?
There is no doubt when Kasav's story was making all the headlines in the national news and also in the local newspaper, so any news associating his name would really grab the attention of the Editor or any viewers. What so every may be, was it really necessary to drag Kasav's name in that news thus giving a bad impression to the people of the country about our own people. Yes there is no denying that Ranjan Daimary had killed innocent peoples in the name of revolution, and also that the NDFB is also the chief accused of the 30th October blast. Was the Lawyers decision became so appealing that Kasav, s name got resemblance with Ranjan Daimary? To my believe it is something like saying all Muslims are terrorist. Yes we know all Islamist terrorist are Muslims but all Muslims are not terrorists and it must be also clear that no Bodo militants can be related to Kasav. Few years back a bollywood film entitled “TANGO CHARLI” had shown about militants in the North-East, and depicted the Bodo militants in a very horrible manner something like man eaters. The movie was banned in Assam by the then cultural Minister Mrs. Hemo Prava Saikia after there was public Hue and cry. The infamous Adavasi clash in Beltola took no time to give a bad impression about the whole Assamese community’s attitude towards women when some notorious people stripped a Adivasi Lady. The reason that most of the people of our country don’t know about the North East they try to judge it through the eyes of the media. So where is the responsibility of the media? I don’t think any foreigners are ruling the media Houses.
Is Arabinda Rajkhowa any different from Ranjan Daimary? In fact the ULFA has killed more innocent people, what about the killings in the Dhemaji Blast, did any one ask to Hang the ULFA leaders whenever they were produced in the court. How a bomb blast in the court premises can be different from that of the Dhemaji Blast.
Ranjan Daimary cannot be stopped from getting any legal assistance; he has to be tried in the court. Assam lawyers Association has refused to fight for him. But we all respect their sentiments as a human being, but legally this cannot be justified only because of the blast in the court premises. If journalists are killed by militants will the media house stop publishing news? If a government office is targeted by militants will it stop functioning, there has been blast in Fancy Bazzar, Paltan Bazzar, and everying thing is going as usual, and all accused are getting legal assistance in the same court. Whatever may be, saving the face of the lawyer’s profession, Mr, Sabda Rabha, has come forward to give legal assistance to Ranjan Daimary which has again raised the eyebrows of some media groups trying to give it a political colour and once again trying to alienate Ranjan Daimary, thus giving a wrong impression to the Bodo community. The Bodo Sahitya Sabha has already expressed about some media playing with the sentiments of the Bodo Community and trying to create differences between the greater Assamese and the Bodo Community. In the long run one cannot deny ant communal clashes if provocation is overdone when communal and political agents are always looking for opportunity to exploit any vulnerable situation. Will media then take the responsibility for any untoward incidents or security breakdown or get busy flashing “BREAKING NEWS”.
If Arabinda Rajkhowa gets a lawyer to defend himself, why not Ranjan Daimary. A layman will never understand the difference between the killings of innocent people done by the NDFB or the ULFA or any other organization including government machinery, perhaps from now onwards the people would try to differentiate the innocent killings and categorizing their punishments even. Thanks to the role of some media groups for enlighting the peoples thought. But where will this lead to us? At least not towards a united Assam that we all talk about. At times we have all realized how hollow we are inside in the name of a greater Assamese society; we are a state without any soul. This is not in the cases of our sister states. We have always shouted Delhi is far away from Dispur and thus they don’t listen to our painful voice. But how far is Diphu and Haflong from Dispur, Have we ever tried to feel their pain or share their grievances. How many organization are now sharing the sentiments of the greater Bodo community?
The arrest of Ranjan Daimary was no different from that of Arabinda Rajkhowa or Jewel Garlosa, but to my firm belief no one thought even in their wildest dreams that such a crisis situation would be suddenly created by a section of Media. From the Lawyers decision, to relating Kasav with Ranjan Daimary to public interview in the TV saying Ranjan Daimary should be hanged till death and that Ranjan Daimary is the Kasav of Assam, where were all these voices when Arabinda Rajkhowa was arrested and brought to the court? In contrast the very next day after Arabinda Rajkhowa was produced in the court, the media and newspapers termed him as a hero and that the ULFA as whole had morally won their first war against the government. It is the same media for whom Ranjan Daimary has become the ugliest criminal in the history of the world. Were we born to fall from grace in such an ugly manner and still take pride to carry on things unchanged? I believe there is always exception and till democracy is alive people will always look forward to see the media playing a greater role in uniting the society. The common people of Assam have always tried to restrain themselves in the time of crises and will always have to do so foreseeing that more man made crises like situation awaits us ahead.
The greater Assamese society have progressed a lot we have understood how we have fall whenever we were divided. Yet we fear because we are very vulnerable. History says though Ahoms came from a foreign land they dedicated themselves to form a greater Assamese society and unite them and that kept us away from the mighty Mughal invaders. But it seems now the Assamese society is more divided mentally than physically. The choice is our as to how we would like to carry on as a greater Assamese society. The people should be the ultimate judge and keep their eyes wide open to the role played by the Media. It’s high time People should learn both to respect and reject the forth estate according to their conscience.
Peter alex todd
Asian News International.(ANI)