I have shuddered every time I have heard of an incidence of violence in Assam. I have been overcome by shame, sometimes, at the attitudes of people from my home state when they attempted to defend or justify the violence. I have been apalled at the antics of one of Assam's most celebrated writers, a Jnanpith and Sahitya Akademi Awardee, who glosses over the atrocities of the terrorists and keeps asking the government to make its peace with them.
But today, I have smiled at the courage that a few students displayed when they reacted to another tragic crime. Given that they studied in a Hindi medium school, these students were probably not "Assamese" in the generally-used meaning of the term. And no, I am not suggesting that violence should counter violence. But in the circumstances, I think these students acted in the most courageous and perhaps, most natural, way. And it is this spirit, this courage, that can bring peace and prosperity to Assam, in a way no government, no politician, no outsider can.
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