Every terror attack anniversary brings back dark memories and fear of the possibility of yet another such black day. Apart from the painful and traumatic memories of it all, as a victim, a witness and a viewer, one goes through a sense of uncertainty and fear of another terror attack that could happen at any time, any place.
For the common man, the rhetoric of assurances and promises of crushing the demon of terrorism by those in power is not enough to instil confidence that the security in place has been strengthened and such horrifying tragedy would not recur.
The 2008 Mumbai terror attack was one of the darkest moments in the history of not only the city, but the nation as a whole. The 26/11 terror attack lasted three days and claimed around 166 lives. That was a decade ago. But only today, a terror-encounter took place in Chhattisgarh's Sukma district that left eight Maoists and two policemen killed. And, not too long ago, on March 2018, another terror attack in Sukma killed nine security personnel, not to mention the endless militant attacks in Jammu and Kashmir. The attacks are many and another one bites the dust all the time. The smoke of gunfire continues to smoulder as terrorism in different forms continue unabated in this country.
While there are different forms of terrorism in India classified as religious terrorism, narco-terrorism, left-wing terrorism and nationalist terrorism, people in the country battle terror of social evils every day - inside homes, on the road and in other public places. Atrocities such as sexual assaults on women, the most debated MeToo moments and lesser-talked about domestic violence and all kinds of crime and terror activities continue to cause fear in the minds of many.
People are constantly living in fear - the fear of being attacked even in broad daylight. While technically, attacks such as cold blood murder, rape and molestation or torture behind closed doors, may not be termed terror attacks, nevertheless, they are horrifying and terrorising.
Only the other day, an American tourist, John Allen Chau, was allegedly killed by tribesmen in the Andamans. Danger lurks in all places.
Also take the case of several incidences of discrimination against, ill treatment and attacks on people from Northeast states living in metros. And back in their home states such as Nagaland, Assam and Manipur where the scourge of militancy continues to wreak havoc, putting the common man's life at risk. Many a time, the common man has to bear the brunt of the conflict between the government and militant groups.
Although to state so may sound pessimistic, in the present given situation, terror thrives in India and the common man continues to live in fear – the fear of being attacked, fear of being a victim of attacks, fear of being sexually assaulted, fear of being raped on the way home, fear of being thrashed for some as they enter their so-called homes.