Sunday, July 9, 2017

Lynchistan: India is the Lynching Capital of the World

A spate of lynchings of Indian Muslims has highlighted the religious violence that has been rampant in India for decades. The 2014 election of Hindu Nationalist leader Narendra Modi to the office of Indian Prime Minister has further emboldened the Hindu Nationalists who have been the main planners, instigators and perpetrators of murderous rampages against India's religious minorities.

UP CM Adiyanath with Indian PM Modi
Modi was shunned by much of the world for over a decade for his part in the 2002 Gujarat massacre of Indian Muslims. His policies as prime minister indicate that he's not a changed man. Yet, he is now being embraced by the western leaders who claim to uphold human rights and religious freedoms.

Pew Research Report:

A Pew Research report from data collected in 2015, about a year after Modi rose to power, found that the level of hostility against religious minorities is "very high". In fact, it said India scores 9 for social hostilities against religious minorities on a scale of 0-10.   Other countries in "very high" category for social hostilities include Nigeria, Iraq and Syria. Pakistan's score on this scale is 7 while Bangladesh is 5.5.

Rise of Hindu Nationalists: 

The situation for India's minorities, particularly Muslims, has become a lot worse in the last two years with Hindu mobs lynching Muslims with impunity. Recent election of anti-Muslim radical Hindu priest Yogi Adiyanath as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, India's most populous state, is seen as a clear signal from Mr. Modi that his anti-Muslim policies will continue.

Beef Murders: 

Mohammad Akhlaq is believed to be the first victim of Hindu lynch mobs claiming to be protecting the cow. He was accused of consuming beef. For more than a week Prime Minister Narendra Modi remained silent over the incident and even after he spoke about it, he did not condemn it outright. The ruling BJP officials even tried to explain it as the result of the genuine anger of the Hindus over the slaughtering of a cow.

This year, The Indian Express, an English-language newspaper, found seven incidents between March and May of 2017 in which Indian Muslims were lynched by Hindu mobs. On June 22, three Muslims were killed in West Bengal state after being accused of cow smuggling. On June 27, a Muslim dairy owner in the state of Jharkhand was attacked by a mob after being accused of slaughtering a cow; the man was rushed to a hospital in critical condition after the police managed to save him from his attackers, according to Al Jazeera.

Pew Research Report on Religious Freedom

History of Anti-Muslim Riots in India:

Paul Richard Brass, professor emeritus of political science and international relations at the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington, has spent many years researching communal riots in India. He has debunked all the action-reaction theories promoted by Hindu Nationalists like Modi. He believes these are not spontaneous but planned and staged as "a grisly form of dramatic production" by well-known perpetrators from the Sangh Parivar of which Prime Minister Modi has been a member since his youth.

Here's an excerpt of Professor Brass's work:

"Events labelled “Hindu-Muslim riots” have been recurring features in India for three-quarters of a century or more. In northern and western India, especially, there are numerous cities and town in which riots have become endemic. In such places, riots have, in effect, become a grisly form of dramatic production in which there are three phases: preparation/rehearsal, activation/enactment, and explanation/interpretation. In these sites of endemic riot production, preparation and rehearsal are continuous activities. Activation or enactment of a large-scale riot takes place under particular circumstances, most notably in a context of intense political mobilization or electoral competition in which riots are precipitated as a device to consolidate the support of ethnic, religious, or other culturally marked groups by emphasizing the need for solidarity in face of the rival communal group. The third phase follows after the violence in a broader struggle to control the explanation or interpretation of the causes of the violence. In this phase, many other elements in society become involved, including journalists, politicians, social scientists, and public opinion generally. At first, multiple narratives vie for primacy in controlling the explanation of violence. On the one hand, the predominant social forces attempt to insert an explanatory narrative into the prevailing discourse of order, while others seek to establish a new consensual hegemony that upsets existing power relations, that is, those which accept the violence as spontaneous, religious, mass-based, unpredictable, and impossible to prevent or control fully. This third phase is also marked by a process of blame displacement in which social scientists themselves become implicated, a process that fails to isolate effectively those most responsible for the production of violence, and instead diffuses blame widely, blurring responsibility, and thereby contributing to the perpetuation of violent productions in future, as well as the order that sustains them."

"In India, all this takes place within a discourse of Hindu-Muslim hostility that denies the deliberate and purposive character of the violence by attributing it to the spontaneous reactions of ordinary Hindus and Muslims, locked in a web of mutual antagonisms said to have a long history. In the meantime, in post-Independence India, what are labelled Hindu-Muslim riots have more often than not been turned into pogroms and massacres of Muslims, in which few Hindus are killed. In fact, in sites of endemic rioting, there exist what I have called “institutionalized riot systems,” in which the organizations of militant Hindu nationalism are deeply implicated. Further, in these sites, persons can be identified, who play specific roles in the preparation, enactment, and explanation of riots after the fact. Especially important are what I call the “fire tenders,” who keep Hindu-Muslim tensions alive through various inflammatory and inciting acts; “conversion specialists,” who lead and address mobs of potential rioters and give a signal to indicate if and when violence should commence; criminals and the poorest elements in society, recruited and rewarded for enacting the violence; and politicians and the vernacular media who, during the violence, and in its aftermath, draw attention away from the perpetrators of the violence by attributing it to the actions."

Summary:

India is seeing a spate of lynchings of Muslims by Hindu mobs who have been emboldened by the rise of anti-Muslim Hindu Nationalist leader Narendra Modi since his 2014 election to the highest office in India. The elevation of fellow radical Hindu Yogi Adiyanath to the top job in Uttar Pradesh by Mr. Modi has further alarmed India's Muslim minority. University of Washington's Professor Emeritus Paul Brass, who has documented the history of anti-Muslim violence in India,  describes it as "a grisly form of dramatic production" by well-known perpetrators from the Sangh Parivar of which Prime Minister Modi has been a member since his youth. Pew Research report on religious violence confirms India's status as a country with "very high" levels of social hostilities against religious minorities.  There appears to be no relief in sight for them at least in the foreseeable future.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Yogi Adiyanath as UP CM

Hindu Nationalists Admire Hitler

Hinduization of India Under Modi

Muslim Victims of Gujarat 2002

India's Superpower Delusions: Modi's Flawed Policies

What Do Modi and Trump Have in Common?

21 comments:

Shams S. said...

In Pakistan, tens of thousands of Shia have been evaporated in bombings, plus the Ahmadis, and other minority religions. Balochi young men have been obliterated (like Bengalis in E Pak). The jews have been literally kicked out.

Riaz Haq said...

Shams: "In Pakistan, tens of thousands of Shia have been evaporated in bombings, plus the Ahmadis, and other minority religions. Balochi young men have been obliterated (like Bengalis in E Pak). The jews have been literally kicked out."

Your parroting of propaganda based on extreme exaggeration of facts is no match for actual data that the Pew Research report is based on.

Riaz Haq said...

BBC News - Why stopping #India's #vigilante killings of #Muslims will not be easy. #Lynchistan #Modi #BJP #Cow

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-40505719#
Last month Prime Minister Narendra Modi said murder in the name of cow protection is "not acceptable". Hours after his comments, a Muslim man was reportedly killed by a mob who accused him of transporting beef in his car.
Under Mr Modi's Hindu nationalist BJP, the cow has become a polarising animal and religious divisions are widening. Restrictions on the sale and slaughter of cows are fanning confusion and vigilantism.
The recent spate of lynchings in India have disturbed many. Muslim men have been murdered by Hindu mobs, mostly in BJP-ruled states, for allegedly storing beef and, in one case for helping a mixed-faith couple elope.
Using data gleaned from news reports, some have argued that such hate crimes have increased since Mr Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government came to power. Party chief Amit Shah has rejected such assertions, saying there were more incidents of lynchings when the previous Congress government was in power.
When a prominent journalist said India was becoming a "lynchocracy", critics immediately took to social media to say that India had a long history of mob and religious violence and liberals were exaggerating the import of the recent murders.
Vigilante justice
A BJP MP and columnist wrote that there was a "streak of underlying violence in India's public culture", and since Independence, "political violence has been supplemented by flashes of mob violence aimed at either settling scores or securing justice".
I spoke to Sanjay Subrahmanyam, one of India's most distinguished and provocative historians, on the cultural history of violence in India. He told me it would be useful to distinguish between three acts of violence: pogroms (violent riots aimed at the massacre or persecution of an ethnic or religious group), mob violence and killings to defend social norms.
Is India descending into mob rule?
'Beef' lynching: Failure of India's political imagination?
A night patrol with India's cow protection vigilantes
During a pogrom, he said, "a majority community targets a minority, and the violence takes place on a sizeable scale, in an orgiastic mode".
"These are also usually repeated incidents. They often are based on systematic mobilisation, as well as systematic targeting. We all know the prominent instances in India. (The anti-Sikh riots in 1984, or the 2002 anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat, for example.) Often, the forces of law and order have a part, either active or passive."
Mob violence, Dr Subrahmanyam says, usually comprise acts on a small scale, which claim to deliver vigilante justice, because the forces of law are feeble and undependable.
"These are your thieves and robbers, or even sometimes when a car accident happens, a crowd gathers, and lynches the driver. Essentially, this is because of the perceived weakness of the law to deliver what it promises."

Riaz Haq said...

The head of a militant Hindu supremacist temple is now leading India’s most-populous state

Firebrand Hindu Cleric Ascends India’s Political Ladder

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/12/world/asia/india-yogi-adityanath-bjp-modi.html?smid=tw-nytimes&smtyp=cur

the taproot of Yogi Adityanath’s popularity is in a more ominous place. As leader of a temple known for its militant Hindu supremacist tradition, he built an army of youths intent on avenging historic wrongs by Muslims, whom he has called “a crop of two-legged animals that has to be stopped.” At one rally he cried out, “We are all preparing for religious war!”

Adityanath (pronounced Ah-DIT-ya-nath) was an astonishing choice by Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, who came into office three years ago promising to usher India into a new age of development and economic growth, and playing down any far-right Hindu agenda. But a populist drive to transform India into a “Hindu nation” has drowned out Mr. Modi’s development agenda, shrinking the economic and social space for the country’s 170 million Muslims.

Few decisions in Indian politics matter more than the selection of the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, because the post is seen as a springboard for future prime ministers. At the age of 45, the diminutive, baby-faced Adityanath is receiving the kind of career-making attention that projects an Indian politician toward higher office.

“He is automatically on anybody’s list as a potential contender to succeed Modi,” said Sadanand Dhume, an India specialist at the American Enterprise Institute. “They have normalized someone who, three years ago, was considered too extreme to be minister of state for textiles. Everything has been normalized so quickly.”

Adityanath did not respond to repeated requests for comment for this article.

In March, when the Bharatiya Janata Party won a landslide electoral victory in Uttar Pradesh, political prognosticators expected Mr. Modi to make a safe choice — Manoj Sinha, a cabinet minister known for his diligence and loyalty to the party. On the morning of the announcement, an honor guard had been arranged outside his village.

But by midmorning, it was clear that something unusual was going on. A chartered flight had been sent to pick up Adityanath and take him to Delhi for a meeting with Amit Shah, the party president. At 6 p.m. the party announced it had appointed him as minister, sending a ripple of shock through India’s political class.

They were shocked because Adityanath is a radical, but also because he is ambitious, even rebellious. As recently as January, he walked out of the party’s executive meeting, reportedly because he was not allowed to speak. Mr. Modi is not known to have much tolerance for rivals.

---------

Political observers in Delhi are watching him as one might watch an audition. Journalists filed reports of his first 100 days last week, and some were lukewarm, noting his failure to contain violent crime.

Neerja Chowdhury, an analyst, said Adityanath has two years to establish himself as an effective administrator.

“Remember, he is 20 years younger than Modi, and he is a known doer, so if he manages to deliver on some fronts, he would then become a possible candidate” in 2024, she said.

“India is moving right,” she added. “Whether India moves further right, and Modi begins to be looked upon as a moderate, I think that only time will tell.”

Adityanath may be interested in rebranding himself a mainstream politician, but his followers in the vigilante group do not all agree.

During the days after the election, some 5,000 men came forward to join the organization every day, prompting organizers to stop accepting applicants, said P. K. Mall, the group’s general secretary.

Riaz Haq said...

Excerpts of Audrey Truschke's Aurangzeb


https://books.google.com/books?id=oUUkDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=aurangzeb+by+audrey+truschke&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwibz_Hvn4XVAhUS32MKHdNlAKIQ6AEIJDAA#v=onepage&q=British&f=false


Across the border in Pakistan, too, many endorse the vision of an evil Aurangzeb. As Shahid Nadeem, a Pakistani playwright, recently put it: " Seeds of partition were sown when Aurangzeb triumphed over [his brother] Dara Shikoh". Such far-fetched suggestions would be farcical, if so many did not endorse them.


British colonial thinkers had long impugned thew Mughals on a range of charges, including that they were effeminate, oppressive, and Muslims. As early as 1772, Alexander Dow remarked in a discussion of Mughal governance that "the faith of Mahommed is peculiarly calculated for despotism; and it is one of the greatest causes which must fix for ever the duration of that species of government in the East". For the British the solution to such an entrenched problem was clear: British rule over India. While the Indian independence leaders rejected this final step of the colonial logic, many swallowed the earlier parts wholesale. Such ideas filtered to society at large via textbooks and mass media, and several generations have continued to eat up and regurgitate the colonial take that Aurangzeb was a tyrant driven by religious fanaticism.

Over the centuries, many commentators have spread the myth of of the bigoted, evil Aurangzeb on the basis of shockingly thin evidence. Many false ideas still mar popular memory of Aurangzeb , including that he massacred millions of Hindus and destroyed thousands of temples. Neither of these commonly believed "facts" is supported by historical evidence although some scholars have attempted, usually in bad faith, to provide an alleged basis for such tales.

-----------------------


Such views have roots in colonial-era scholarship, where positing timeless Hindu-Muslim animosity embodied the British strategy of divide and conquer. Today, multiple websites claim to list Aurangzeb's "atrocities" against Hindus (typically playing fast and loose with the facts) and fuel communal fires. There are numerous gaping holes in the proposition that Aurangzeb razed temples because he hated Hindus, however. Most glaringly, Aurangzeb counted thousands of Hindu temples within his domain and yet destroyed, at most, few dozen.....A historically legitimate view of Aurangzeb must explain why he protected Hindu temples more often than he demolished them.

----------------------

The bulk of Mughal histories are written in Persian, the official administrative language of the Mughal empire but a foreign tongue in India today. Out of necessity and ease, many historians disregard the original Persian text and rely instead on English translations. This approach narrows the the library of materials drastically, and many translations of the Mughal texts are of questionable quality, brimming with mistranslations and abridgments. Some of these changes conveniently served the agendas of the translators, especially colonial-era translations that tend to show Indo--Muslim kings at their worst so that the British would seem virtuous by comparison (foremost here is Elliot and Dowson's History of India as Told by Its Own Historians). Such materials are great for learning about British colonialism, but they present an inaccurate picture of Mughal India.

Riaz Haq said...

In rebuke to Modi government, India’s high court suspends ban on trade of cattle for slaughter

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/in-rebuke-to-modi-government-indias-high-court-suspends-ban-on-cow-slaughter/2017/07/11/e23c6733-93f9-4bff-b785-b3279dfd08fe_story.html?utm_term=.eda62df7461c

India’s Supreme Court has suspended a controversial ban on the trade of cattle for slaughter that critics said unfairly targets the country’s meat and leather industry and its predominantly Muslim and lower-caste workers.

The ban, introduced by the Hindu nationalist government, prohibits the trade of cattle for slaughter in animal markets, a move that would have cut off a major supply chain for the country’s $16 billion-a-year meat and leather industry.

Cow slaughter and consumption have increasingly become a flash point in India, where cows are considered sacred by many members of the Hindu majority and where cow traders and beef consumers have faced beatings and lynchings.

India’s highest court on Tuesday upheld a lower-court decision to suspend the ban, which some states had already declared they would not enforce.

“The livelihoods of people should not be affected by this,” Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar said in a courtroom in New Delhi. The government’s attorney told reporters after the decision that the government would modify the rules.

The government had said in May that the prime focus of the new livestock market rules was to protect cows from cruelty and to stop them from being smuggled to places such as Bangladesh and Nepal for large-scale animal sacrifice.

Representatives of India’s meat industry had argued that the ban — which prohibits the sale of “cattle” for slaughter, “cattle” being a broadly defined term including buffaloes and even camels — would have a devastating effect on their business.

Daljeet Singh Sadarpura, president of the Progressive Dairy Farmers Association in the northern state of Punjab, said the regulations would complicate the sales of the 300,000 cows the association’s members send to market each year.

“A crazy person has written this notification,” he said. “Where will the cows go? If a farmer sells four cows every year and now he cannot, how will he keep them? No one has the capacity to keep so many cows. If he cannot keep them, he will leave it on the roads or in the fields.”

India has about 5 million stray and abandoned cows, many kept in shelters run by volunteers.

The ban was the latest limitation placed on butchers in a country where beef slaughter and consumption is already banned in several states. One state assembly this year amended laws to punish those slaughtering cows with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, and other state officials have suggested that butchers should be hanged.


Right-wing Hindu “cow protection” squads have in recent months beaten and killed cow traders and those suspected of eating beef.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s lengthy silence on the issue led to criticism that he was enabling the cow vigilantes. Last month, he spoke out against the violence, saying killing in the name of the cow was “not acceptable.”

Since the late 2000s, India has rapidly increased its beef exports — particularly of water buffalo meat, known as carabeef — by 12 percent annually, boosting its share of world beef exports from 5 percent to about 21 percent and rivaling Brazil for the top spot, according to a 2016 report from the U.S. Agriculture Department.

The country’s leather goods industry — which supplies international retailers such as Benetton — would face supply shortages in the long run under the ban, according to Puran Dawar, chairman of the northern section of India’s Council for Leather Exports.

“If animals are not slaughtered, where will we get the raw material from?” Dawar said. “If the raw material is not there, the prices will go up. We will lose to our competitors. We could not play in the international market.”

Riaz Haq said...

Angry mob beat #Muslim man for allegedly carrying #beef in #India. #Cow #BJP http://metro.co.uk/2017/07/13/angry-mob-beat-muslim-man-for-allegedly-carrying-beef-in-india-6776885/ … via @MetroUK

A Muslim man was brutally beaten by a mob in India after the accuse him of carrying beef.
A video posted on social media showed a group of men hitting Salim Ismail Shah, 32, in Jalalkheda, India, yesterday.

He had been stopped while he was transporting 15 kgs of meat on his motorcycle, according to Jalalkheda Police Inspector Vijaykumar Tiwari.
‘He was accosted by four persons who beat him up, alleging he was carrying beef,’ he told The Indian Express.
‘Shah sustained injuries for which he was admitted to a hospital, from where he has been discharged.’

-------------

The Maharashtra Animal Preservation Act, 1976, bans the killing of cows and calves.
Inspector Tiwari added: ‘We have sent the meat sample to a forensic laboratory to find out if it was beef or something else.
‘We haven’t registered any offence against Shah as of now.’
It’s not the first time someone has been attacked after allegedly carrying beef, which is considered sacred among many religions in India, including Hinduism and Sikhism.
Last month a mob on a train headed to Mathura reportedly stabbed a 15-year-old boy named Junaid Khan to death because he was apparently carrying beef.


Read more: http://metro.co.uk/2017/07/13/angry-mob-beat-muslim-man-for-allegedly-carrying-beef-in-india-6776885/#ixzz4mjsqOR1G

Anonymous said...

Mr. Riaz is pig slaughter and consumption allowed for non Muslims or Muslims who want to consume it?

Riaz Haq said...

Anon: " is pig slaughter and consumption allowed for non Muslims or Muslims who want to consume it?"

There's no ban on pork in Pakistan.

Zain said...

I understand your projection to Indian problems here in light of Pakistans.

Prejudice is everywhere. Against blacks and others in the US to Sunni Shia politics internationally.

However, it is the infrastructure of hate and the scale of militant religious fervor that is imported and exported throughout the world in the form of terrorism, is the true question.

Pakistan needs to analyze that within itself otherwise the world will continue judge it harshly.

Riaz Haq said...

Zain: "Pakistan needs to analyze that within itself otherwise the world will continue judge it harshly. "

"The world" judges nations and religions based on its own interests, not based on merit.

The hypocrisy of "the world" is on full display all around us.....some are judged very harshly while others escape with little or no criticism for the same or similar actions.

Atrocities committed by western, Indian and Israeli forces barely get mentioned while actions of those in countries considered unfriendly get maximum negative coverage.

Pakistan should do what Pakistanis see fit and not to please "the world".

Riaz Haq said...

10 things #India must learn from #Pakistan. #Minorities treated better, women safer, ambulance servc http://www.indiatimes.com/culture/travel/10-things-india-must-learn-from-pakistan-292313.html …

Surprisingly, in Pakistan minorities are treated better. No, hindus aren't called terrorists and Sikhs who live in Pakistan don't have a grudge against the Islamic religion. It's unbelievable how many myths we have about Pakistan and it's too saddening that we actually believe random crap that is being said about Pakistan.

We make fun of the Pakistani cricketers while they are being asked about the match summary for they don't have such a strong command over the English language, but did you know that they are the fourth smartest people in the world? And that's not all according to a poll organised by the Institute of European Business Administration, from 125 countries, Pakistanis have been ranked the fourth most intelligent people across the globe. Pakistan has the seventh largest collection of scientists and engineers.

Accept it or not but the beautiful Sufi music that we Indians sway and hum to are originally from Islamic country Pakistan. And that's not all, even the ever famous musical show Coke Studio on MTV has been adopted by us from Pakistan. You must listen to the original Coke Studio from Pakistan, it's just too beautiful to even describe. The best thing about the show is that it isn't as commercialized as India and they actually feature budding artists instead of popular and renowned singers and musicians.

Yes, we do have several child prodigies in the country but no one makes it as big as this one. Pakistan's Muhammad Ilyas passed the examination enabling him to become a Civil Judge in July 1952 at the age of 20 years 9 months, although formalities such as medicals meant that it was not until eight months later that he started work as a Civil Judge in Lahore, Pakistan.


With death toll just rising at a rapid pace, we must learn how Pakistan's NGOs operate and how the health sector works. Edhi Foundation is Pakistan's largest non-profit social welfare program. It runs the world's largest ambulance network in Pakistan. Now that's something that we Indians must really look in to and get inspired for it will help us aiding and saving lives better.

Riaz Haq said...

#India’s Turn Toward Intolerance. #Hindutva #Islamophobia #cow #Modi #economy #jobs #BJP

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/17/opinion/indias-turn-toward-intolerance.html

Narendra Modi’s landslide victory as prime minister of India in 2014 was borne on his promises to unleash his country’s economic potential and build a bright future while he played down the Hindu nationalist roots of his Bharatiya Janata Party.

But, under Mr. Modi’s leadership, growth has slowed, jobs have not materialized, and what has actually been unleashed is virulent intolerance that threatens the foundation of the secular nation envisioned by its founders.

Since Mr. Modi took office, there has been an alarming rise in mob attacks against people accused of eating beef or abusing cows, an animal held sacred to Hindus. Most of those killed have been Muslims. Mr. Modi spoke out against the killings only last month, not long after his government banned the sale of cows for slaughter, a move suspended by India’s Supreme Court. The ban, enforcing cultural stigma, would have fallen hardest on Muslims and low-caste Hindus traditionally engaged in the meat and leather industry.

It would also have struck a blow against Mr. Modi’s supposed priorities: employment, economic growth and boosting exports. The $16 billion industry employs millions of workers and generated $4 billion in export income last year.

More disturbing was his party’s decision to name Yogi Adityanath, a Hindu warrior-priest, as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, and a springboard to national leadership. Mr. Adityanath has called India’s Muslims “a crop of two-legged animals that has to be stopped” and cried at one rally, “We are all preparing for religious war!”

This development led the analyst Neerja Chowdhury to observe: “India is moving right. Whether India moves further right, and Modi begins to be looked upon as a moderate, I think that only time will tell.”

On Tuesday, India’s film censor board, headed by a Bharatiya Janata Party stalwart apparently intent on protecting Mr. Modi and the party from criticism, ruled that a documentary film about one of India’s most famous sons, the Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen, cannot be screened unless the director cuts the words “cow,” “Hindu India,” “Hindutva view of India” — meaning Hindu nationalism — and “Gujarat,” where Mr. Modi was chief minister at the time of deadly anti-Muslim riots in 2002.

This might seem like merely a farcical move by Hindu fanatics, if it were not so in line with much else that is happening in Mr. Modi’s India, and if the implications for India’s democracy weren’t so chilling. But this is where Mr. Modi has brought the nation as it prepares to celebrate 70 years of independence on Aug. 15.

Riaz Haq said...

#India's #Muslims live 'in constant fear' as vigilante murders increase. #hinduterrorism #Lynchistan #Modi #Cow


In early July, local engineer Nazmal Hassan was caught wearing a burqa by police at Aligarh railway station in India's northern state of Uttar Pradesh.

He wanted to hide his identity due to fear of being targeted on the train.

His cover was blown when he was getting off the train and his bag accidentally hit a co-passenger, who fell over.

Mr Hassan said that the person accused him of intentionally hitting him, before launching an outburst of verbal abuse — attacking his religion — in public.

"Incidents of killings on the issue of us being beef eaters have scared me to death," Mr Hassan told the ABC.
"I have started believing that such things can happen to me also and I could also end up being a victim of this violence."

Mr Hassan's memory returned to the horrific murder of Junaid Khan, a 16-year-old Muslim boy, who was stabbed to death on a train while he was returning home from Delhi in early June.

Khan was allegedly killed because of his Muslim identity.

The teenager, wearing a skullcap, was thrown off a train after being stabbed by an unruly mob.

Vigilante campaigns target beef eaters

The assault was yet another against Muslims, who make up about 14 per cent of India's 1.3 billion people population.

According to international NGO Human Rights Watch, vigilante campaigns against those who consume beef have led to the killing of at least 15 Muslims — including a 12-year-old boy — since May 2015.

Scores more have been injured in seven separate incidents of mob violence.

India is experiencing a spate of vigilante murders targeting mainly Muslims accused of eating cows, which Hindus consider to be holy.

The violence is causing growing unease among the country's Muslim minority, prompting calls from activists for the Government to act.

Khan's was one of the many lynchings and atrocities against Muslims in recent months.

Lynching is an old crime in India, often committed against those of so-called lower castes and marginalised tribes in order to reinforce brutal social hierarchies.


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-07-30/fear-growing-among-muslims-in-india/8751380

Riaz Haq said...

#India is not shimmering, it is simmering. #IIP Down. #FarmerSuicides #unemployment #Lynchistan #KasaiCrisis #Modi

http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/india-is-not-shimmering-it-is-simmering-4777929/

India is not shimmering, it is simmering. The Bharat-India cleavage has widened to an unprecedented degree. The disconnect between ground narrative and the public discourse is nothing short of hallucinatory.
There is unprecedented farmer distress in the country.As many as 12,602 persons involved in the farming sector– 8,007 farmers-cultivators and 4,595 agricultural laborers –committed suicide in 2015, according to figures provided by the central government to the Supreme Court.Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh told Parliament that according to National Crime Records Bureau data for 2016, which is yet to be published, 11,400 farmers committed suicide; in 2015, the number was 12,602.
From Tamil Nadu to Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh and even in the food bowl, Punjab, falling farm incomes are driving farmers to take the extreme step of ending their lives.
Similarly, the industrial scenario is dismal. In June 2017, eight core sectors of the economy grew by a dismal 0.4% , down from 7% for the corresponding month in 2016. The growth in Index of Industrial Production (IIP) was 1.7 per cent in May 2017, as compared to a growth of 8.0 per cent in May 2016.
As opposed to 380 lakh new jobs that India required in the38 months this government has been in office, job creation or job growth for 2015 and 2016 (April-December) stood at 1.55 lakh and 2.31 lakh in numbers respectively. The former minister for rural development Jairam Ramesh recently underscored this worrying downturn when he said, “In the first two years of the Modi government, only 4.4 lakh jobs were created in the organized sector as opposed to 21 lakh jobs created during the first two years of the UPA-II government.”
Demonetization and the implementation of the flawed GST have further broken the back of the informal sector of the economy leading to widespread chaos. The GDP growth numbers evidence this phenomenon. In the fourth quarter of 2016 the economy clocked only 6.1% which at 2004-05 base year translates into a measly figure of 4.1% only.
Social harmony has been torn to shreds with Hindustan acquiring the notorious sobriquet of Lynchistan – all thanks to the active encouragement and support of the ruling dispensation, notwithstanding the pro-forma condemnation by the prime minister once in a while. It does not require rocket science to discern the truth. You only need to ask why these lynchings weren’t taking place between 2004-14 and why have they become a norm these past three years?
Internal security lies in tatters. Kashmir is up a creek without a paddle. It is a volcano waiting to explode again as it did last year after Burhan Wani was killed by security forces last year. Maoist activity is on the rise. From January 1-July 15, 170 deaths in 504 incidents have taken place. The North East is on the boil with the Gorkhaland violence having peaked this summer.The 47-day-long indefinite shutdown, which started on June 15, is the longest so far in the picturesque hill station which had last witnessed a 40-day bandh in 1988 by the Gorkha National Liberation Front and a 44-day shutdown in 2013 by GorkhaJanmuktiMorcha on the statehood issue. Even in the otherwise peaceful state of Tripura, the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura has upped the ante on their demand to carve out Tipraland— a separate state from Tripura. Meanwhile, there is no sign of the fabled Naga Accord.

Riaz Haq said...

#NBA’s #KevinDurant on #India"Cows, Stray Dogs" "Bunch of Underprivileged People" "20 years behind" #Poverty #Filth
https://www.thequint.com/sports/2017/08/11/nba-star-kevin-durant-on-india

NBA champion Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors had visited India in July to help the NBA make inroads into the nation of 1.3 billion.
Durant took part in a camp in New Delhi, where he helped set a Guinness World Record for the largest basketball lesson – 3,459 people participated in it across multiple venues.
The NBA finals MVP met young players at the NBA Academy, with many more joining via satellite from four other cities across the country.
However, after returning to the United States, he said in an interview to The Athletic that India is 20 years behind in terms of knowledge and experience.

I went with no expectation, no view on what it’s supposed to be like. I usually go to places where I at least have a view in my head. India, I’m thinking I’m going to be around palaces and royalty and gold — basically thought I was going to Dubai. Then when I landed there, I saw the culture and how they live and it was rough. It’s a country that’s 20 years behind in terms of knowledge and experience.
Kevin Durant
Durant added that there are “just a bunch of underprivileged people living in India”.
You see cows on the street, monkeys running around everywhere, hundreds of people on the side of the road, a million cars and no traffic violations. Just a bunch of underprivileged people there and they want to learn how to play basketball. That was really, really dope to me.

Riaz Haq said...

#India at 70: #Lynchistan #racist #fascist #xenophobic #Hindu #Supremacist #Modi #BJP

"Mr. Modi’s rule represents the most devastating, and perhaps final, defeat of India’s noble postcolonial ambition to create a moral world order. It turns out that the racist imperialism Du Bois despised can resurrect itself even among its former victims: There can be English rule without the Englishman. India’s claims to exceptionalism appear to have been as unfounded as America’s own." --- Pankaj Mishra

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/11/opinion/india-70-partition-pankaj-mishra.html

India at 70, and the Passing of Another Illusion

By PANKAJ MISHRA
AUG. 11, 2017

August 15, 1947, deserved to be remembered, the African-American writer W.E.B. Du Bois argued, “as the greatest historical date” of modern history. It was the day India became independent from British rule, and Du Bois believed the event was of “greater significance” than even the establishment of democracy in Britain, the emancipation of slaves in the United States or the Russian Revolution. The time “when the white man, by reason of the color of his skin, can lord it over colored people” was finally drawing to a close.

It is barely remembered today that India’s freedom heralded the liberation, from Tuskegee to Jakarta, of a majority of the world’s population from the degradations of racist imperialism. India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, claimed that there had been nothing “more horrible” in human history than the days when millions of Africans “were carried away in galleys as slaves to America and elsewhere.” As he said in a resonant speech on Aug. 15, 1947, long ago India had made a “tryst with destiny,” and now, by opening up a broad horizon of human emancipation, “we shall redeem our pledge.”

But India, which turns 70 next week, seems to have missed its appointment with history. A country inaugurated by secular freedom fighters is presently ruled by religious-racial supremacists. More disturbing still than this mutation are the continuities between those early embodiments of postcolonial virtue and their apparent betrayers today.

Du Bois would have been heartbroken to read the joint statement that more than 40 African governments released in April, denouncing “xenophobic and racial” attacks on Africans in India and asking the United Nations Human Rights Council to investigate. The rise in hate crimes against Africans is part of a sinister trend that has accelerated since the Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi came to power in 2014.

Another of its bloodcurdling manifestations is the lynching of Muslims suspected of eating or storing beef. Others include assaults on couples who publicly display affection and threats of rape against women on social media by the Hindu supremacists’ troll army. Mob frenzy in India today is drummed up by jingoistic television anchors and vindicated, often on Twitter, by senior politicians, businessmen, army generals and Bollywood stars.

Hindu nationalists have also come together to justify India’s intensified military occupation of Muslim-majority Kashmir, as well as a nationwide hunt for enemies: an ever-shifting and growing category that includes writers, liberal intellectuals, filmmakers who work with Pakistani actors and ordinary citizens who don’t stand up when the national anthem is played in cinemas. The new world order — just, peaceful, equal — that India’s leaders promised at independence as they denounced their former Western masters’ violence, greed and hypocrisy is nowhere in sight.


Riaz Haq said...

#India at 70: #Lynchistan #racist #fascist #xenophobic #Hindu #Supremacist #Modi #BJP

"Mr. Modi’s rule represents the most devastating, and perhaps final, defeat of India’s noble postcolonial ambition to create a moral world order. It turns out that the racist imperialism Du Bois despised can resurrect itself even among its former victims: There can be English rule without the Englishman. India’s claims to exceptionalism appear to have been as unfounded as America’s own." --- Pankaj Mishra

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/11/opinion/india-70-partition-pankaj-mishra.html


India’s lynch mobs today represent the latest and most grisly expression of such cynical political ideologies. As the sheer brutishness of Mr. Modi’s populism becomes clear, the memory of the aristocratic Nehru becomes more sacred, especially among politicians and commentators from India’s English-speaking upper castes. But Mr. Modi has also turned that legacy of high-flown promises to his political advantage.

Nehru and his followers had articulated an influential ideology of Indian exceptionalism, claiming moral prestige and geopolitical significance for India’s uniquely massive and diverse democracy. Only many of those righteous notions also reeked of upper-caste sanctimony and class privilege. Mr. Modi has effectively mobilized those Indians who have long felt marginalized and humiliated by India’s self-serving Nehruvian elite into a large vote bank of ressentiment.

Virtuous talk of unity in diversity and secularism has been replaced by a barefaced Hindu nationalism: The tattered old masks, and the gloves, have come off. The state, colonized by an ideological movement, is emerging triumphant over society. With the media’s help, it is assuming extraordinary powers of control — telling people what they should eat at home and how they should behave in public, and whom to lynch.

Mr. Modi’s rule represents the most devastating, and perhaps final, defeat of India’s noble postcolonial ambition to create a moral world order. It turns out that the racist imperialism Du Bois despised can resurrect itself even among its former victims: There can be English rule without the Englishman. India’s claims to exceptionalism appear to have been as unfounded as America’s own.

And so one can, of course, mourn this Aug. 15 as marking the end of India’s tryst with destiny or, more accurately, the collapse of our exalted ideas about ourselves. But a sober reckoning with the deep malaise in India can be bracing, too. For it confirms that the world as we have known it, molded by the beneficiaries of both Western imperialism and anti-imperialist nationalism, is crumbling, and that in the East as well as the West, all of us are now called to fresh struggles for freedom, equality and dignity.

Riaz Haq said...

A study in contrasts: Muslims in India vs Pakistan by Dr. Ata ur Rahman ... The per capita income of Muslims in Pakistan is about $1,460 while the per capita income of Muslims in India is only about $400 – less than one-fourth of the country’s national Indian GDP. About 52.3 percent of Muslims in India live below the poverty line, with an average monthly income of $5 or less. Muslims constitute about 14.5 percent of the total Indian population. However, only between two percent and three percent of them pass the civil services examinations.
----
The literacy level of Muslims in India is also much lower than the national average. Only about four percent (one in 25) of Indians who receive education up to the high school level are Muslims, while only 1.7 percent (one in 60) of college graduates in India are Muslims. When we consider that one in seven people in India is a Muslim, these figures bring out the stark disparities that exist in India between Hindus and Muslims. In his book, ‘India’s Muslim Problem’, V T Rajshekar states that Muslims “are in many ways worse than untouchables and in recent years they are facing dangers of mass annihilation”.

The mass killings of Muslims in Indian towns and cities also add strength to the Two-Nation Theory. About 630 Muslims lost their lives during the 1969 Gujarat riots. This was followed by anti-Muslim violence in the Indian towns of Bhiwandi, Jalgaon and Mahad in 1970 when a large number of properties of Muslims were burnt and many Muslims killed. During anti-Muslim violence in Moradabad in 1980, about 2,500 Muslims were killed by extremist Hindu elements. Another 1,800 Muslims were slaughtered in the state of Assam in 1983 in a village called Nellie. The official 600-page Tiwari Commission Report on the Nellie massacre has remained a closely guarded secret since 1984.

The destruction of Babri Masjid in December 1992 by Hindu nationalists led to the Bombay Riots. BBC correspondent Toral Varia concluded that the riots were “a pre-planned pogrom” that had been in the making since 1990. According to many independent scholars, extremist Hindu rioters had been given access to information about the locations of Muslim homes and businesses through confidential government sources. This violence was planned and executed by Shiv Sena, a Hindu nationalist group led by Bal Thackeray.

The anti-Muslim riots that occurred in Bombay in January 1993 following the demolition of the Babri Masjid in December 1992, were reported in the following manner by international and Indian newspapers:

“Bombay: Day after day after day, for nine days and nights beginning on January 6, mobs of Hindus rampaged through this city, killing and burning people only because they were Muslims. No Muslim was safe – not in the slums, not in high-rise apartments, not in the city’s bustling offices – in an orgy of violence that left 600 people dead and 2,000 injured...Interviews have suggested, moreover, that the killing, arson and looting were far from random. In fact, they were organized by Hindu gangs, abetted by the Bombay police, and directed at Muslim families and businesses. The extent of police cooperation with the Hindu mobs appears to have spread through the entire police force, excluding only the most senior officers...neither the Maharashtra authorities nor the central government in New Delhi made any effort to stanch the flow of blood.” (The New York Times, February 4, 1993)

“Tragedy has struck Surat (Muslim) women… for them, it was hell let loose... While men were thrown into bonfires, torched alive or had burning tyres put around their necks, women were stripped of all their clothes and ordered to ‘run till they can’t… run”. (The Times of India, December 22, 1992).

https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/223824-A-study-in-contrasts

Riaz Haq said...

How to Get Away With Murder in Small-Town #India? #bribe #vote #caste #politics #democracy #justice #misogyny

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/19/world/asia/murder-small-town-india.html

PEEPLI KHERA, India — On my last week in India, I went to say goodbye to Jahiruddin Mewati, the chief of a small village where I had made a dozen or so reporting trips.

Jahiruddin and I were not precisely friends, but we had spent many hours talking over the years, mostly about local politics. I found him entirely without scruples but candid. He suspected my motives but found me entertaining, in the way that a talking dog might be entertaining, without regard for the particulars of what I said.

Jahiruddin, though uneducated, was an adept politician, fresh from winning a hard-fought local election. During our conversations, he would often break into rousing, patriotic speeches about truth and justice, thumping the plastic table in emphasis and making it jump. The effect was somewhat tarnished by his Tourette’s syndrome, which caused him to interject the word “penis” at regular intervals.

He was frank about the dirty aspects of his job. He occupied a post reserved for women from lower castes, but no one pretended this was any more than a sham; his wife’s name appeared on the ballot, but the face on the poster was his.

Nearly everything he did in local government was transactional, driven by the desire to secure the votes of minuscule family and caste groups. The funny thing was, it seemed to be working pretty well.

-----------------------

Geeta’s husband — a slight man named Mukesh — stood above Geeta, who was slumped on the side of a rope cot, and brought the stick down on her head several more times. She died on the spot.

What bothered Anjum, she said, was that the police had been contacted about the killing but almost immediately closed their investigation, releasing Mukesh after a few hours.

--------------------------------------


This was not because he (Jaheeruddin Mewati) believed that Geeta deserved to die or that her husband deserved to escape punishment. It was something more practical. Mukesh’s extended family controlled 150 votes; Jahiruddin had won his last election by 91. A murder case would have been a blot on their caste, and by brokering the cover-up, he had performed a particularly valuable service to a key vote bank. It might help him win re-election someday.

“In India, there is no vote in the name of development,” he said. “In India, there is no vote in the name of doing something good. The vote is in the name of caste, family, community. And then 10 percent of people will say, ‘He did something good for me.’”

Riaz Haq said...

Indian journalist Gauri Lankesh shot dead in Bangalore

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-41169817

A prominent Indian journalist critical of Hindu nationalist politics has been shot dead in the south-western state of Karnataka, police say.
Gauri Lankesh, 55, was found lying in a pool of blood outside her home in the city of Bangalore.
She was shot in the head and chest by gunmen who arrived by motorcycle. The motive for the crime was not clear.
India journalists are being increasingly targeted by radical Hindu nationalists, activists say.
Gauri Lankesh, who edited a weekly newspaper, was known as a fearless and outspoken journalist.
She had returned home in her car on Tuesday night and was opening the gate when the attackers shot her, police said. She died on the spot.

Officials said they suspected she had been under surveillance by the gunmen. An investigation has been opened.
Her death has been widely condemned, with Karnataka state's chief minister Siddaramaiah calling it an "assassination on democracy".

Ms Lankesh came from a well-known family, and edited Lankesh Patrike, a newspaper founded by her father P Lankesh, a left-wing poet and writer.
She was the sister of award-winning filmmaker Kavitha Lankesh.
Who was Gauri Lankesh?
Known for her secularist criticism of right-wing and Hindu nationalists, including members of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)
Sympathetic to the Naxalites, or Maoist rebels, and was involved in the reintegration of former rebels
Worked for The Times of India and later ran the newspaper Lankesh Patrike, which her father founded, with her brother Indrajit for several years
She left to start several publications, including her own newspaper Gauri Lankesh Patrike
Ms Lankesh was convicted of defamation in 2016 for a report she published on local BJP leaders.
She was sentenced to six months in jail, and was out on bail and appealing the conviction at the time of her death.
In an interview with Narada News last year shortly after her conviction, she criticised BJP's "fascist and communal politics" and added: "My Constitution teaches me to be a secular citizen, not communal. It is my right to fight against these communal elements."
"I believe in democracy and freedom of expression, and hence, am open to criticism too. People are welcome to call me anti-BJP or anti-Modi, if they want to. They are free to have their own opinion, just as I am free to have my opinion."
'They come on motorbikes, kill, and vanish'
Her killing follows several assassinations of outspoken secularists or rationalists in recent years, including scholar Malleshappa Kalburgi, anti-superstition activist Narendra Dabholkar, and politician Govind Pansare.