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Death of a truthsayer

Death of a truthsayer

Truth-seekers never had it easy, and the murder of yet another environmentalist seeking truth and jus­tice has raised questions about how well- or otherwise – a legislation on truth-seeking may work where, without a somewhat unre­alistic guarantee of sovereign prot­ection for those who do seek it. The larger significance of the mur­der of Shehla Masood, who was shot at point blank range in her car outside her house around 11 am on 16 August, is the horrific reminder of what our mafias may resort to in order to have their way. In what ways can the government and its agencies as well as the private sector participate in mere physical protection of those who would like to know the truth? Masood's questioning has ranged from mysterious tiger deaths to the allegedly illegal diamond mining mafia, which has led to suspicion against the mining mafia, to restoration of tribal land. According to her, not a single case out of approximately 30,000 cases of alienation and restoration of tribal land has been ruled in favour of the community in Madhya Pradesh.Masood's fight and her death are also evidence that it is perhaps easier to protest in broad brushstrokes (against corruption, for example) by arousing emotions than it is to zoom in on individual cases. Individual cases in our country seem to be the Pandora's Boxes that, as they are opened, reveal the depth of decay there is in the way we do business in this country.

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