The duel between a pen and a gun
A person, very intelligent, a topper throughout his studies, chooses to follow journalism or Mass Communication due to his communication and language skills. This is a job that he chooses to gratify himself and earn some money as a journalist. Believe me, I have journalists in my family and they are not the highest paid in this very competitive corporate world. And then one fine day, he gets bitten by the bug of being opinionated about some social, religious or national issue. Good or bad, only the few following him can make the distinction, but he carries this responsibility to take the cause forward and write about it. So that’s the power of the mighty pen.
In today’s very democratic world, a very normal scenario. And in this picture comes another person who doesn’t come from a good background – illiterate, used to hooliganism all his life, and one day he decides that he is going to silence the voice of this journalist. Murder is his profession. So with basic skills for the purpose of murder, now he heads a gang of goons who take the so-called supari to kill someone. He is just a call away and always above the law. Any politician, any mafia don, any corrupt purpose, any terrorist, will call him up and say isko tamaam kar do. Aur kam tamaam, with the pull of one trigger. Bang bang bang, and the pen is silenced. The mighty gun has won again, and hurrah. Maybe if someday I write a report about a recital and my statement is not politically correct, I will carry a similar supari on my head.
This is the story of so many, and not just journalists - Shujaat Bukhari, Gauri Lankesh, M.M. Kalburgi, Govind Pansare, Narendra Dabholkar… The phone rings, and the ink turns from blue to red.