What is it about Binayak Sen? Unfortunately, in India, we have many more cases of individuals being wrongly treated by the state. Why, then, do Nobel laureates not sign petitions, so-called liberals with dubious credentials not blast the state, and the media not use such shrill tones and cover the issue in any of the other cases?
The obvious answer would be the man's story. Here is a person who could have made a lot of money by doing what so many of his colleagues do. But he chose to serve the poor and make a difference to the lives of the less fortunate. However, there is more to this than that. Sure, the man's story does play a part, but there are people with equally inspiring stories who don't get the same "print-space". The truth is that Dr Sen is a perfect fit for those who take a lot of pleasure in throwing mud at India. They take up his cause because the story of a Doctor who fought for the poor is more "sexy" than the story of, say, an illiterate villager who fights the power despite bearing its full brunt time and again.
Over the last few months, I have been exposed to a mafia of haters whose only job is to throw mud at India. I do not know why they do it, but their modus operandi is simple. Highlight the negatives and make it larger than they are and deny the positives. I don't want to take names, but a knowledgeable person will know whom I am talking about. To them, India has to be criticised, our failures highlighted, more so than any other country. If their criticism was based on a desire to be constructive, to contribute to making towards a better India, I would have been grateful. But that is not the case. To them, Dr Sen's case is manna from heaven, especially when India is seeking an enhanced role in the international community. They do not have an iota of knowledge on the case; nor do they even read the judgement. To them, what matters is that India gets bad press. The same facts which they claim are sacred are irrelevant.
The left-liberal reporting of the case is a perfect case study in hypocrisy. Here is a band of hypocrites who wax eulogies on a judgement if they agree with it, and blast another which does not agree with their ideology. To be fair, this would have been acceptable and indeed, along expected lines if it were not for a propensity to play around with words like "mockery of justice", laws which fall short of "standards for criminal prosecution", and a trial which apparently is unfair. How is it that laws which are perfectly fine in one case fall short of standards on another; how is it that the same system they praise to the skies in one case is unfair in another? They refuse to read the judgement, to understand what the judge said when he mentioned that he would have taken a lenient view if it were not for the Maoists. To me, it seems that the left-libs take themselves far too seriously; they believe to the bigger than the idea of India, they believe their story is bigger than the institutions which make India a democracy, no matter however flawed.
If you disagree with a judgement (as I do in this case), argue on the basis of the case alone. Certainly, have a media campaign demanding his release along with compensation, have public debates on the issue, but implanting motives on the judiciary, which for all its faults is independent, is not on. However, left-liberals have a tendency to exaggerate, and it is this attitude the haters feed on.
I firmly believe Dr Sen is being played with. One the one hand is the police, who use an environment of anti-Maoism to serve their needs, and an unholy alliance of haters and so-called liberals who use him to stoke their ego, or to feed their Indophobia. This is very unfortunate.