Political Pyromaniacs

Sneaky politicians who fail to resist the impulse of starting fires, pitching people against each other

Syeda Afshana
Srinagar, Publish Date: Dec 16 2017 11:19PM | Updated Date: Dec 16 2017 11:19PM
Political Pyromaniacs

Following US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a wave of anger has erupted from the Middle East to the rest of the world. While solidarity rallies and protest demonstrations have taken to the streets, at least four Palestinians have been killed so far because of series of air raids by Israel against Palestinian targets in the days following Trump’s announcement. 

The decision, which broke with decades of US policy on Jerusalem, has been termed by political analysts as Trump’s “act of political pyromania”, and Palestinians are indeed already in the streets of Gaza burning US and Israeli flags! 

Political pyromaniacs ( or call them pol pyros) are the smartly sneaky-politicians who fail to resist impulses of starting fires deliberately and get a thrill out of pitching people against each other. The pol pyros intentionally tweet, post, or make a statement knowing that it will cause a virulent reaction. The pol pyros actually suffer from a psychological disorder that makes them fond of ‘setting fires’—in a sense to witness the ensuing fatal strife silently. 

Not only a pyro like US Prez Trump who is on record to utter incendiary statements like labeling Muslims as “a group of people that is very sick”(Fox News, December 2015), there are other hues of maniacs around who have taken to politics merely by inciting rage and revulsion amongst different sections of people. As an expression of socio-political ideology, their pyromania has dawned dramatically and treacherously in the form of divisive comments that have proven quite lethal.  

India, as of now, presents an ugly hive of pol pyros who thrive on persecution of minorities by even smoldering them to death. Since 2010, almost 78 cow-related hate crimes have been reported across India, and 97 per cent of these have occurred only after 2014. From Akhlaq, Pehlu to Afrazul of Rajasthan, almost a dozen Muslims have either been lynched or burnt alive. A fanatic buildup of discourses over beef eating, ghar wapsi, love-jihad, triple talaaq, strict family planning law blah blah has been distended precariously. As a result, spiteful pyromania is often turning to be a precursor to mad violence (Rajasthan man hacked and burnt alive: Muslims are no longer safe in India- Daily O, 10 December- 2017).

 The absurdly insensitive politicking has reduced the whole idea of politics to a dirty and dangerous banter. That’s why, politics in India is no more a civil activity. The current gruesome and tumble reality of Indian politics now ‘affords’ to harbor politicians with criminal records, who even leverage their dubious connections to grab political power. Such pyros use hate speech to whip up the milieu of mistrust and malice, and seek gratification from revenge and ruin. Small wonder, the hate-speech accused in India prove more successful in elections. Reportedly, as many as 70 sitting MPs or MLAs have hate speech cases pending against them with the ruling party way ahead of the pack with 28!

Nearer home, there is also no dearth of such pol pyros. The fire that engulfed whole of Kashmir during 2016 was mainly a reaction to unholy alliance between political opportunists and pol pyros. From ‘throwing pigeons among the cats’ to ‘ashamed to be a Muslim’ to ‘would not mind allying with the BJP another 100 times for the betterment of Kashmir’, the politics in State since recent coalition government has been a reflection of  worst kind of profiting pyromania. And from all this, if it continues unabated, there is surely a repulsive political blowback in the offing.

Bottomline: In an already fraught society, bigoted and nasty ranting is not just a plain scheming. Darkness within is a bloody feeling, which if not tamed, consumes people and prompts them to spew “fire” and plunder others. The dark emotions coupled with deadly environment, as unleashed by pol pyros, is getting ghastly. Perhaps, the purveyors of such mania fail to realize how conspired “fire” can swallow up not only others but them as well. Maniacs, after all, can be plotting maniacs but pyromaniac plotters have shockingly a very small shelf life. For they play and ploy through “fire” and finally become flammable in return! 



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