It is sobering to remember that the Maharashtra police force was busy in the days before the terror attack on Pune defending movie theatres against the threats by the Shiv Sena during its ridiculous campaign against the new Shah Rukh Khan movie.
It is not our case that the terror attack could necessarily have been stopped if the cops had not been guarding movie theatres. But the events of the past few days are a ringing testimony to the fact that irresponsible political parties do great damage to the country when we are faced with more serious threats from across the border.
We saw something similar in the days before the 26/11 terror strike, when the Shiv Sena launched a vicious personal attack on Maharashtra state Anti Terrorism Squad chief Hemant Karkare, who later died defending Mumbai. Less well known is the fact that the local Congress was deep into a war of words with the Shiv Sena on what was authentic local food.
It is time thuggish groups were told that a liberal and prosperous India is best placed to take on the forces of religious medievalism in the region.