Terrorism is a worldwide phenomenon and India is no exception to it, rather India is beset with the monster of terrorism from last more than three decades in one form or the other. Terrorists and martyrs are not the same terms but are definitely different and separate terms and connote different meanings. However, one thing is obvious that there is a piquant situation where one hears that a terrorist is equated with a freedom fighter and on his death he is called martyr which is factually wrong and misleading.
But the fact of matter is that there is dichotomy and confusion so far as the meaning of terrorist and martyr is concerned. It is a fact that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter and martyr and wrongly so. There is a thin line of separation and distance which separates a terrorist from a martyr and this distance should be maintained so that there is no scope for any confusion between the terms terrorist and martyr. However, it is also a fact that a terrorist is a terrorist and cannot be equated with a martyr.
Howsoever, the people inclined to equate a terrorist with a martyr will try and throw dustin the eyes of the gullible masses. In the final analysis they will fail in equating terrorists with martyrs which is the fact of history and freedom struggles. A terrorist is a terrorist first and last and in no way can be equated with a martyr though efforts are on in the terrorist infested states to glorify and eulogies terrorists as martyrs.
The dichotomy is that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter and on his death a martyr but there is need to clearly demarcate meanings of terrorists and martyrs. A martyr dies for a just, worthy,noble and good cause but a terrorist dies for an ignominable cause and dies the death like an animal but a martyr is he who dies for a just worthy and good cause which is in the interest of the people and the nation he belong to but a terrorist only believes in killings and extortions, kidnappings, mayhem , death, destruction and what not and does not have any ideology except the ideology of gun and violence and through fear psychosis and destruction and intimidation he tries to gain support of the people but in reality he is against God and humanity and as such should be condemned and not glorified whatever be the reasons as he is through and through a terrorist and in noway can be given the status of a martyr.
According to Cambridge English dictionary, a martyr is a person who suffers very much or is killed because of their religious or political beliefs and is often admired because of it and thus dies not as an ordinary mortal but is immortalized after his death. But terrorist on the other hand is a person who uses unlawful violence and intimidation especially against civilians in the pursuit of political aims.
Terrorism is defined by NATO as the unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence against individuals or property in an attempt to coerce or intimidate governments or societies to achieve political, religious or ideological goals. But a martyr works and pursues a just and a worthy cause and he is worthy of emulation. A terrorist is one who takes a sadistic pleasure in killing innocent people and security men as he is intoxicated by the ignorance,indoctrination and radicalism.
Given the above definition of a terrorist and terrorism it becomes absolutely clear that terrorist should not be glorified and cannot be made a martyr in the strict definition of the term but our people in Kashmir and elsewhere and other countries as well try to project terrorists as freedom fighters and martyrs which cannot be accepted in a democratic and civilized 21st century in any manner. Thus those equating terrorists with martyrs are on a wrong path and under fear they are supporting terrorism in order to gain their terrorists sympathy otherwise in their heart of hearts they also dislike the ways of terrorists as terrorists have no ideology except the ideology of gun and killing and thus they abhor the democratic exercises as they fear that they will be exposed.
We are living in a strange world where one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter and this is a great confusion. Killing of innocent men, women, children, young and old and unarmed men is no revolution or a religious war or jehad but is only terrorism which deserves condemnation in the strongest terms and people should rise to the occasion and defeat and expose these enemies of humanity – terrorists. People should desist from calling terrorists as freedom fighters and martyrs and this is against man and God.
Turn the pages of Indian history and see that in the freedom struggle of India our heroes and revolutionaries have not killed, maimed or tortured innocent Britishers but they have fought with the then British government and their policies of subjugating India. Our freedom fighters and revolutionaries like Shaheed – i.e- Azam Sardar Bhagat Singh has never killed innocent Britishers or innocent and unarmed people but had fought against the imperlistic powers of British government. Thus, he is a martyr pure and undiluted and no one should doubt his revolutionary status and his stature of a martyr.
It is unfortunate that a professor of Jammu University has equated Bhagat Singh as a terrorist and he deserves all condemnation for all lack of knowledge and his myopic view. It has rightly been condemned by all quarters and thank god that the professor of political science department has apologized for his remarks. Coming back to the main subject of terrorists and martyrs it should be noted that there is a thin line of difference and distance between the two but the two terms connote different meanings. While the terrorist is one who kills, maims, torchers, gouges out the eyes, slits the throat and axes the body of innocent women as was the case of Kashmir terrorism in 1990s, those involving in these activities cannot be equated with freedom fighters and martyrs on their death as the shelf life of terrorists is very short. A martyr works for a pious, worthy and noble cause and attains martyrdom and a martyr is worthy of emulation. Therefore, it is futile,inhuman, uncivilized and irreligious to equate terrorists with freedom fighters and martyrs and there are few takes of this view and people should not allow such unholy comparison of a martyr and a terrorist.