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Vikas Kamat
 Vikas Kamat is a programmer- entrepreneur living in Birmingham AL. This blog is a complex mix of Indian culture, life in southern USA, computer sciences, and sports. Opinions are his own.
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'

Anatomy of a Riot in India Durable Link to this BLOG
Anatomy of a Riot

via telephone from Amma: A student at the New English School has been slacking off -- not doing homework, skipping school, untidy uniform etc., and as has been the practice was being punished by a teacher. The punishment required encircling the school three times in humiliation.

Unfortunately this particular boy had a weak heart or was recovering from an ailment and begged not to be punished. Half way through his punishment he collapsed and later died in a local hospital.

A very sad event.

The boy belonged to a poor migrant Muslim community (called Maplis).

Poor families in India struggle a lot to educate their young. So in this particular case, the community's anger was understandable.

Things turned worse as some angry men visited the school and rampaged the library, laboratory, and the computers. They wanted revenge against the school and the teachers. They beat up the principal and the teachers.

The New English School is a very dear and respected institution in Honaver. A mob of uneducated men -- especially migrants and that too Muslims -- taking law into their hands and roughing up the beloved teachers was too much to bear for local parents (caste Hindus).

So in a reciprocal show of strength, thousands of people observed a "bundh" --threatening Muslim businesses and closing down a national highway. Lots of people arrested, a lot of damage to public property, increase distrust of communities.

Deccan Herald: Punished Student Dies

See Also:
• A Guide to Ethnicity and Conflict in India


(Comments Disabled for Now. Sorry!)First Written: Saturday, January 15, 2011
Last Modified: 1/15/2011 9:04:25 PM

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