Where do we go from here

“Although suburban trains on the Western and Central Railways and Harbour Line functioned as usual, some buses, taxis and autorickshaws were set on fire.” – From the CNN IBN report on the rampage that MNS party workers have been on post Raj Thackeray’s arrest.

Now I really have nothing new to say on what Mr Thackeray has been upto. But I was a bit taken aback by this line from the report..so matter of fact, yet another facet of the whole issue.

I was in Bombay when the four Dalits were killed in Khairlanji and there was a round of riots in various parts of Maharashtra following the killings. I was returning home as usual by train and it was past 10 30 pm when the train pulled into the Chembur station. There was a flurry of stones and slippers into the compartment. There were two other women in the women only first class compartment and I was talking to KT on the phone. We were jolted out of our wits and for the first time in my life I was witnessing the feeling of fear for my safety. Some men from the next compartment shouted at us to close the doors and we lugged the doors shut. Through the grills they told us that they would come into our compartment in the next station, in case the rioters tried to force themselves in and we meekly agreed. Gave a thoroughly scared KT a quick update and waited for the next station where the same thing happened. We were relatively safe in the locked train..but what if someone threw something that was burning..what if they forced entry…the possibilites were incredibly scary and another issue was that we were all due to get off a couple of stations later in Vashi..

Another station..more stones…and we began long journey across the bridge and I remember telling KT that I was going to hang up as I wanted to be unhindered if I had to run, but he wanted to know what exactly I was upto as he was really scared for my safety. But we figured it made more sense for me to be alert and ready..and I hung up as we rolled into the Vashi station…

An eerie calm greeted us..a far cry from the three stations we left behind behind the bridge. I guess the toll road was a deterrent for the rioters and they couldnt be bothered to pay up the charges. After giving KT an update, we stuck close to the men from the first class compartment and I reached the auto stand and it was quite clear that Vashi was untouched by the rioting. I reached home with my heart beating so hard, the brush with danger looming large.

And it struck me. This was relatively a minor incident, in comparison to Bombay in 1991, Gujarat in 2002, the bomb blasts that have happened..

And now we have reached the level of such matter of fact statements in news. And I really don’t know where we’re headed…


2 Responses

  1. Thnak god you were ok….that would have been unbelievably scary no matter how it compares to anything else.

    I know..but later on thinking calmly, you realise how much worse it can get..and how these nightmares have come true for so many people..

  2. oh man!!!!

    My sentiments exactly!

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