Though we buy The Hindu out of habit (there aren’t many English-language options in Chennai), I long ago stopped giving it more than a cursory read. In particular, I gave yesterday’s issue a miss. But today, while blogsurfing, I came across yesterday’s editorial — easily the most jaw-dropping ever in a sordid history of craven red-boot-licking editorials by N. Ram.
You may have read about recent events at Nandigram. You may have heard that local farmers were protesting the appropriation of their land for a Special Economic Zone (SEZ). You may have heard that the recent violence was perpetrated by armed CPI-M cadres, who kept out media, activists and even the CRPF for days until their operation was complete.
According to Ram, the Left Front is appealing for peace, it is the Maoists (who remain elusive, even according to the West Bengal Home Secretary) who are behind the violence, and it is “peasant families owing allegiance to the Left Front” who have been driven out at gunpoint. The CRPF was brought in at the state government’s request; presumably they were also promptly deployed (Ram does not say). Governor Gopal Gandhi, who criticised the CPI-M government, overstepped his limits.
Well, N. Ram is welcome to his alternate reality, but there is no reason why I should (literally) subscribe to it. He does not need my money; he has ample other sources.