There are widespread reports in electronic and print media that the ministry
of home affairs has issued an alert stating that LTTE has threatened to kill Mrs
Sonia Gandhi. If media reports are correct, the warning is ominous. This warning
should be taken most seriously. Not because of what the home ministry has said,
but because the home ministry at all said it. This is election time. Indira
Gandhi was assassinated just before an election and her death had a profound
impact on the poll. Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated midway during a general
election and that altered the poll trend after his death.
The truth behind political assassinations is seldom established. Doubt, mystery and unanswered questions continue to haunt the assassinations of Liaquat Ali Khan, President Kennedy, Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and other world leaders. The conduct of several leaders during the murders of Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi have never been satisfactorily probed or cleared. Dr Henry Kissinger once said that trying to unravel the conspiracy behind a political assassination is seldom rewarding. He said it is more fruitful to consider who benefits from the assassination.
These worries arise from the inexplicable conduct of the home ministry. If it has information about the presently beleaguered LTTE’s plans to assassinate Indian leaders, how does it help security to publicize the information and actually identify the intending killers? The information could have been conveyed quietly to all the relevant leaders and their respective security setups. Would that not have been more effective for safeguarding the VVIPs? Instead, the doors have been thrown open to all potential terrorist groups and others to plot assassinations. The plotters would be emboldened by the knowledge that if assassination is successful, suspicion against LTTE as the culprit has already been established.
Home minister Chidambaram needs to ask the Intelligence agencies and home ministry officials some hard questions. And the security of Mrs Sonia Gandhi and other leaders needs to be stepped up to unprecedented levels. They must be guarded not only against the LTTE but against even the most unsuspected quarters.