Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday shared an incredibly moving experience of what happened when he was informed about the killing of LTTE chief Prabhakaran in Sri Lanka in 2009. Speaking at Germany’s Bucerius Summer School, Rahul Gandhi said that the news did not make him and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra happy as they felt that “the violence inflicted upon him had impacted others, including his children.”
He said, “My grandmother (Indira Gandhi) and my father (Rajiv Gandhi) were both killed. So, I have suffered violence. I am talking actually from experience. The only way you can move forward after violence is forgiveness. There is no other way. And to forgive you have to understand what exactly happened and why it happened.”
He continued, “To deal with it is to actually listen and act non-violently. People think this is weakness. But, in fact this is strength. My father was killed by a terrorist in 1991. In 2009, I saw the person who killed my father lying in a field in Sri Lanka.
“I called up my sister Priyanka and said that this is very strange, but I am not happy. I should be celebrating that the person who is dead is the person who killed my father. But somehow I am not happy. She said: ‘you are right, I am not happy either’.”
The Congress president said that the reason why he was because ‘I saw myself in his children.’
“So, I realised, him lying there actually means that there are kids like me who are crying. He might have been a bad or an evil person, but the violence that was done against him was impacting others, like it had impacted me. If you go deep, you will find there is something that triggered that violence. It’s not just a random event. Some action or violence done against him or her has triggered it,” he added.
Indira Gandhi was shot dead by two of her Sikh bodyguards, Beant Singh and Satwant Singh, at her official residence here on 31 October, 1984. Seven years later, his father also an ex-prime minister was kileld when a suicide bomber from Sri Lanka’s now destroyed Tamil Tigers group blew herself up during one of Rajiv Gandhi’s election rallies in Tamil Nadu.
Prabhakaran, the mastermind behind Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination, was killed by Sri Lankan security forces in May 2009, ending a quarter century of militancy in the island nation.
A report by IANS also quoted Rahul Gandhi as saying that the only way to fight violence was by non-violence.
He said, “There is no other way. You might be under the illusion that you can fight violence with violence, but it will come back. You might think that you are very powerful and that you can subdue somebody else, but they will find a way of coming back.”
“Violence is being cause because of a certain anger inside. Until you understand and remove the anger, it is going to remain there. You can’t fight violence with more violence.”