Arjun Ray's book is based on the dialogue around the counterinsurgency doctrine, arguing that the main strategy towards this aim should be preventing people from feeling alienated. The central focus of this strategy, which the author in his capacity as an army man successfully executed in Operation Sadhbhavna, is the people. The author believes that killing is counterproductive and the army must change its role from ‘winning wars’ to ‘preventing wars’.

He also calls upon the media to be more responsible in discharging their role in nation-building rather than being a bystander.

The author proposes a three-pronged strategy to achieve success—preventing conflict by addressing human security through human development, pursuing a policy of atonement and forgiveness, and eliminating trust deficit between the State and the marginalized—the three pillars of Operation Sadhbhavna. The failure on the part of the State and the army to follow this strategy, with terrible human cost and devastating consequences, is charted through the examples of the Naxalite and Kashmiri experience.

Alienation: Poverty, Land, Culture and Politics

Alienation: Poverty, Land, Culture and Politics

Alienation: Poverty, land, culture and politics

I search for God, whom should I hear?

I made stone temples, carved God out of stone

But priests are like stone,

They imprison God.

Whom shall I hear?

We were born untouchables

Because of our deeds.

—Dalit devotional song

I find myself suddenly in the world and I recognize that I have one right alone: that of demanding human behaviour from the other.

—Frantz Fanon

Alienation is like wanting to hang out with someone we like, and being told, ‘Get away from me! You are not my kind of people.’ In the past decade, societal concerns about the damaging effects of alienation have increased phenomenally. In September 2000, Google had 20,400 search results on alienation. In 2010, in the same month, it stood ...

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