January 23, 2014
aap's means to the right end was wrong
The real wrong of Somnath Bharti ((Delhi government's law minister from Aam Admi Party) is in having biased and ugly impressions of Africans and black-coloured people in general. This definitely makes him racist.
For the illegal treatment of the Ugandan women in their home and then being illegally confined in a vehicle Somnath Bharti is responsible directly (if he did this himself along with others) or indirectly (with his supporters getting the courage to do this because of Bharti's presence).
The AAP is wrong on the count of going by the logic that the police should have followed the directions of the state government Minister. This is very wrong.
But Bharti is not wrong in following up on the complaints of Khirki residents that there was a dangerous situation being created on the streets of their locality due to the fact that several outsider men (mostly hoodlums) were coming to their locality because of the open solicitation by some prostitutes (who happened to be Africans) on the streets of their locality. Other female residents of the locality were facing very ugly forms of harassment by outsiders visiting their locality for the prostitutes (including heightened risks of being forced into a moving vehicle and being raped). Is it their fault that they should suffer because of the prostitution going on openly on the streets? Is it not the police's constitutional job to ensure their rights and dignity? Are they children of a lesser God?
The prostitutes are, of course, not doing soliciting out of their own volition but being forced to do so by the pimps who control them. The pimps may or may not be staying in the same locality but the local police would know who they are. These pimps are paying off the police heavily (large proportions of which go directly to the home ministry and the ruling party). The mid-night timing of the action by Bharti and local residents was due to the fact that solicitation goes on heavily at that time and is clearly visible to anyone who can see with their eyes.
It is very important to understand the Delhi police's refusal to listen to Bharti Were they doing so out of concern of human rights? A vast majority of the prostitutes are victims of a serious crime -- that of illegal trafficking. In all cases of trafficking, the sex is forced upon the woman whether or not the woman is objecting to the act at that point in time or not. I hope those who abhor coerced sex have the sensitivity to see this ugly reality in prostitution.
Has any one in the Delhi police or has any significant portion of BJP-Congress critics of AAP ever helped in freeing the prostitutes from their prisons? Is it not the constitutional duty of Delhi police and the central government to ensure justice to victims of human trafficking? If they haven't done this already so far, do we have to blindly believe that the police SHO did not listen to Bharti's orders because he was concerned about violation of human rights of the prostitutes? Of course, Bharti and local residents should have also seen the difference between prostitutes and pimps and acted accordingly and it is extremely unfortunate that they did not do so. But we must remember that neither the local residents, nor Bharti, have the necessary wherewithal to go after the pimps who are backed by powerful and dangerous political elements. They tried taking a short-cut approach which was wrong because it was victimising the victims further. In fact the residents and the prostitues, are jointly the victims of the fallout of the same problem of human trafficking.
In all of the above, add the second deadly element of drugs. Are we absolutely certain that only harmless marijuana was being sold and consumed by the pimps/peddlars on the streets over there? Were there no other deadly drugs being sold over there? And if deadly drugs were being sold are we blind to the devastating effects drug addiction is having on youth of this country and all other countries in the world?
The AAP was wrong in defending Bharti's thinking and in demanding that police listed to its Ministers. But AAP is not wrong in saying Delhi police is completely sold to the drug and trafficking mafia backed by central government politicians. In December 2012 when Sheila Dikshit also pointed out to the fact that Delhi police was under state government control, Kejriwal still went hammer and tongs on her over the issue of women safety. But should he therefore now not do anything about it? Is it wrong to demand now that Delhi police should be under state government control? Not that state governments do not manipulate the state police, but still why should Delhi be different? If the central government is concerned about the safety of Parliament and other central government buldings and residences of central ministers then let there be a separate police force governing and policing only those areas.
The AAP should remove Bharti from the law minister's post. This should have done it on day one itself and still gone on dharna over the issue of women safety, human trafficking and peddling of dangerous drugs.