Thursday, September 14, 2006

Wounds that have yet to heal

Source: The Hindu

Kalpana Sharma

The judgment in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts should not obscure the absence of closure on the 1992-93 communal riots.

MARCH 12, 1993 is a day not many in Mumbai, who were present on that day, will forget. Over a dozen serial bomb blasts ripped through the city from the early hours of the afternoon. They tore apart chunks of Mumbai's landmarks such as the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building on Dalal Street and the Air India building at Nariman Point. And, 257 people died, more than 700 were injured.

The blasts took place at a time when Mumbai's residents had yet to recover from weeks of the most vicious communal riots the city had witnessed in decades. Hundreds had died, crores of rupees of property had been destroyed, and hundreds of thousands of people had been displaced. Virtually the entire city had been touched by the killing, the arson, the reprisals, the hate campaigns, and the fear.

Before people could fully recover, and even as the first tentative steps were being taken to come to terms with the riots, pin responsibility, compensate the families of the dead and the injured, and build structures that heal the rift between communities, the city was shaken once again. Some saw this as a closure, a statement on behalf of a community that had been deeply wounded. Others wondered whether this would make the community much more vulnerable in the years to come.

(To read the rest of the article, click on the link)

No comments: