Tuesday, March 9, 2021

India's Top Cheerleader Fareed Zakaria Acknowledges the Ugly Truth About His Native Land

In "Post-American World" published in 2011, CNN GPS host Fareed Zakaria described India as a "powerful package" and claimed that his country of birth has been "peaceful, stable, and prosperous". It all changed on March 7, 2021, when Zakaria finally spoke out the ugly truth about his native land. "A central thrust of the government's illiberalism relates to its efforts to promote Hindu nationalism, singling out India's Muslim minority", said Zakaria. In a rare moment of candor, he even came close to acknowledging India's military occupation of Kashmir when he said: "In 2020, Kashmir's (Freedom House)  score plummeted. Currently, it is rated as "not free," on par with dictatorships and police states". 

Freedom House 2021 Democracy Map. Source: Freedom House

While it was the first time that Zakaria used his global platform as CNN GPS host to criticize India, it seems that Prime Minister Modi's rule has been a source of great consternation for him. Speaking with Indian journalist Shekhar Gupta on The Print YouTube channel last year, Fareed Zakaria called the Indian state an “inefficient state”.“Indian government functions very poorly, even in comparison to other developing countries. Coronavirus has highlighted that reality, " he added. He did not clearly speak about the lynchings of Indian Muslims by people affiliated with the ruling BJP and the brutality of Indian military against Kashmiri Muslims, but he did ask: “What I wonder about (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi is, is he really bringing all of India along with him? He noted sadly:”India seems like roadkill for China".

Has New Delhi's abject failure in containing the coronavirus pandemic finally done what Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's extreme brutality and open hatred against Zakaria's fellow Indian Muslims could not do? Has he really had it with Hindu Nationalist government? While he has not used his perch on CNN to do it, it appears that he has started expressing his disapproval of the performance on other platforms.

 Here are a few of the key points Fareed Zakaria made while speaking with Shekhar Gupta:

1. There’s no doubt in my mind that the Indian government, and by that I mean the Delhi government, has handled this crisis (COVID19) very poorly.

2. Indian government functions very poorly, even in comparison to other developing countries. Coronavirus has highlighted that reality.

3. In a way, India seems like roadkill for China’s obsession with absolute control over their borders. I do think there is an opportunity here for diplomacy. I don’t think India needs to be confrontational about it (the LAC issue), but of course it should push back.

4. It is now a bipolar world. US and China are way ahead of the rest of the world. For the long term, India needs to decide it’s position with China.

4. Turkey under Erdogan has become more confident and independent. It is culturally proud. It is telling Americans to buzz off.

5. Popularity of political leaders around the  world is linked to their performance on the coronavirus pandemic. In India, however, the issues of religion and caste are still dominating.

6.  What I wonder about (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi is, is he really bringing all of India along with him? How many Muslims in Indian government? Or South Indians in BJP? It is much less diverse than Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's cabinet.

7. I have been very sad to see how Indian democracy has developed over the last few years. It has become an illiberal democracy.

8. The India media is slavishly pro-government. Self-censorship is widespread in India.

9. The Indian courts fold in cases where government takes serious interest.

It has become increasingly clear that India's loudest cheerleaders like Fareed Zakaria are now starting to see the stark reality of Modi's India as a big failure on multiple fronts. Indian state has failed to contain the deadly COVID19 pandemic. India's economy is in serious trouble. The country's democracy is in decline. India seems like a roadkill for China. This turn of events has created serious problems for Pakistani "liberals" who have long seen and often cited India as a successful example of "secular democracy" at work in South Asia.

Here's a video clip of Zakaria's March 7, 2020 show where he criticized India:


Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

COVID19 in Pakistan: Test Positivity Rate and Deaths Declining

Fareed Zakaria Never Misses Any Opportunity to Bash Pakistan

Retired Justice Markanday Katju on Modi's India

Lynchistan: India is the Lynching Capital of the World

73 Year After Independence, Caste-Ridden India Dominated By Brahmins

Pakistan's Pharma Industry Among World's Fastest Growing

Is Pakistan's Response to COVID19 Flawed?

Pakistan's Computer Services Exports Jump 26% Amid COVID19 Lockdown

Coronavirus, Lives and Livelihoods in Pakistan

Vast Majority of Pakistanis Support Imran Khan's Handling of Covid19 Crisis

Pakistani-American Woman Featured in Netflix Documentary "Pandemic"

Coronavirus Antibodies Testing in Pakistan

Can Pakistan Effectively Respond to Coronavirus Outbreak? 

How Grim is Pakistan's Social Sector Progress?

Pakistan Fares Marginally Better Than India On Disease Burdens

Trump Picks Muslim-American to Lead Vaccine Effort

Democracy vs Dictatorship in Pakistan

Pakistan Child Health Indicators

Pakistan's Balance of Payments Crisis

Panama Leaks in Pakistan

Conspiracy Theories About Pakistan Elections"

PTI Triumphs Over Corrupt Dynastic Political Parties

Strikingly Similar Narratives of Donald Trump and Nawaz Sharif

Nawaz Sharif's Report Card

Riaz Haq's Youtube Channel


Riaz Haq said...

#American Historian Audrey Truschke faces threats, Rutgers University extends support to her. Some students, mainly #Hindu, allege that the historian was defaming #Hindus due to her ‘inherently prejudiced views’. #Hindutva #Modi #India https://scroll.in/latest/988994/abhor-vile-messages-and-threats-directed-at-audrey-truschke-says-rutgers-university via @scroll_in

Truschke, who teaches South Asian history at Rutgers University, is the author of Culture of Encounters: Sanskrit at the Mughal Court, Aurangzeb: The Life and Legacy of India’s Most Controversial King, and most recently, The Language Of History: Sanskrit Narratives Of A Muslim Past, which explores ancient Sanskrit texts and their perspectives on Indo-Muslim rule and the Deccan sultanates.

Her most well known and controversial work remains to be Aurangzeb, in which Truschke offers a perspective on the public debate over the Mughal emperor, who is often condemned as the cruelest king in Indian history, and makes the case for why his often-maligned legacy deserves to be reassessed.

Aurangzeb, a Muslim ruler, is widely thought to have destroyed thousands of Hindu temples, forced millions of Indians to convert to Islam, and enacted a genocide of Hindus. In the book, Truschke uses extensive research to argue that his life and history do not match his current reputation.

The book generated fierce backlash in India, particularly from Hindutva groups, making Truschke the target of intense hate speech and slander on social media, which has only worsened over the years. The author also faced calls to ban Aurangzeb and even to ban her from India.

After the renewed backlash on Monday, the author said she had to block over 5,750 Twitter accounts after enduring an “avalanche of hate speech, anti-Muslim sentiments, misogyny, violent threats,” and even “things endangering” her family.


A group called “Hindus on Campus” on Twitter, which describes itself as a student-led initiative to create “a safe space for diaspora Hindus to share their experiences with Anti-Hindu bigotry”, has launched a petition on social media against the historian.

It alleged that Truschke, in her tweets, falsely linked Hindus with extremists and white supremacists rioting at the US Capitol Hill, and claimed that the Bhagavad Gita “rationalises mass slaughter” and violence. The Hindutva community further accused the historian of tweeting that Hindu deity Ram was a “misogynistic pig”, while she “whitewashed Hindu genocide by Mughal king Aurangzeb”.

The group demanded that Truschke be disallowed to teach a course that involves materials related to Hinduism and India “due to her inherent prejudiced views”.

Further, the Hindus on Campus demanded that the Rutgers University publicly condemn her “for causing trauma to Hindu students, alumni, and the Hindu community”. It sought the university to give a platform where Hindu students can bring in faculty and researchers “who can provide realistic representations of Hinduism and India”.

The Rutgers University rejected the submissions made by the group. “Scholarship is sometimes controversial, perhaps especially when it is at the interface of history and religion, but the freedom to pursue such scholarship, as Professor Truschke does rigorously, is at the heart of the academic enterprise,” the institute said.

At the same time, Rutgers “emphatically affirms its support for all members of the Hindu community to study and live in an environment in which they not only feel safe, but also fully supported in their religious identity”, it said.

The institute said it was initiating dialogues to understand the sentiments of the Hindu community on campus, and “create a context that honors our complexity, while allowing us to do the difficult work of constructive and healthy engagement among our diverse community”.

After all, our academic excellence is inseparable from our diversity of perspectives and voices, Rutgers said.

Riaz Haq said...

Professor Audrey Truschke of Rutgers University speaking at a rally outside United Nations Headquarters on Nazi origins of Hindu Nationalism and Hindutva.

"The Party of BJP openly adhere to Hindutva. Hindutva was inspired in its early days by Nazism, the real historical Nazis, about a hundred years ago. Early Hindutva spousers openly admired Hitler. They praised Hitler's treatment of Jews in Germany as a good model for dealing with India's Muslims".


Riaz Haq said...

There it is. India is now coded as an “electoral autocracy” by V-DEM


The world’s largest democracy turned into an electoral autocracy:
India with 1.37 billion citizens.

As noted above, India recently lost its status as an electoral
democracy and its LDI declines from 0.57 in 2010 to 0.34 in 2020,
following the government led by Prime Minister Modi placing
restrictions on multiple facets of democracy such as civil society
and free speech (see box on India and tables at the end of this
report for details).

samir sardana said...

Narendra Modi led the intellectual evolution of Zakaria,after many decades of the eventful life of Zakaria.

It took Modi's rampage, to awaken Zakaria from his intellectual stupor,on Mount Meru, romancing the utopian paradise of "India".

A sentient,does not need the chronology of time,to awaken the "lumen naturale" nodes in his brain.Else,a sentient will keep learning over time - akin to a donkey !

Hindooism is NOT paganism.It is EVIL.Christianity is Paganism

India as a nation never existed EVER.It is an aberration created by the disasters of history.Hence,justice requires that,for the evolution of Dalits,Muslims,Kashmiris and the North East - India has to be partitioned.

Once these races evolve over decades - then,at that stage,if they wish to integrate into the Indian Nation- they may.

The Demonic evil of Hindooism,which was suppressed under the sophistry of Adi Shankara, Dayanand, Vivekananda,Tagore ............,came to the fore in 2015.THIS IS THE SINGULAR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT OF THE CONGRESS !

And this is called PROVIDENCE. Just like the rise of Hitler - in the morass of corruption and mediocrity.With Hitler,the world will pause,before WW3 and another Genocide.That is the stellar achievement of Hitler - and Modi will also send the same message,to the world - BUT THE INDIAN DUDS,will still vote for Modi.

Equity also demands that India be partitioned,to ALSO create a HINDOO NATION - for the devout Hindoos - as every faith and race,have a right to their OWN PATH OF EVOLUTION - but they can't impose their path on others - by coercion or osmosis !

Mr Zakaria has a long road to evolution - as he has to also support the destruction of India and the Indian State.dindooohindoo

samir sardana said...

Point No.8 and 9 in the news article,is the destruction of the media and the judiciary - the last vestige of hope,to counter the Chaiwala.

But to credit the Chaiwala - he has done the impossible - a quantum leap over Mrs Gandhi.She IMPOSED emergency and SUSPENDED rights.Chaiwala has NOT imposed emergency,BUT HAS SUSPENDED ALL RIGHTS SINCE 2015 - and STILL people hail him,as a democrat.

That is the genius of the man ! He knows the worth of the Indians - a race of weasels and cowards - which is easily deduced,from history.

All that is left,is for the Hindoos to crown him as their Man-God !

Coming to the South Indians and their partaking in Modi's cabinet.For the wonders of Milk drinking Idols - Y are the Dravidians a part of the Indian Nation ? It was only PERIYAR who saw the EVIL of the Hindoo elite and the Indian DNA.

Since his death - no Dravidian has had the guts to follow the path of Periyar.They just keep stirring the pot - like fools and duds and people lap it up !

Can the Dravidians read - the Mahabharata - and what the Hindoo elite think of them ?

 South Indians are the "Sinful creatures" of Earth

 The Mahabharata, Book 12: Santi Parva: Mokshadharma Parva: Section CCVII

 I shall now, O son of Kunti, speak to thee about "the sinful creatures" of the earth. Listen to me. 2 Those men, O king, are "born in the southern region" and are called Andrakas, Guhas, Pulindas,Savaras, Chuchukas, "Madrakas"

 "Yama and all the Demons", are in South India

 The Mahabharata, Book 13: Anusasana Parva: Section CL

 Unmachu, Pramchu, Swastyatreya of great energy,Dridhavya, Urdhvavahu, Trinasoma, Angiras, and Agastya of great energy, the son of Mitravaruna,--these seven are the Ritwiks of Yama, the king of the dead, and "dwell in the southern quarter".

 The Mahabharata, Book 13: Anusasana Parva: Section CLV

 Burning with the energy of Agastya, the Danavas, abandoning both heaven and earth, fled "towards the southern direction".

Do these people DESERVE doom ? dindooohindoo

Riaz Haq said...

The fifth annual democracy report by Sweden’s V-Dem Institute, titled ‘Autocratisation goes viral’, has downgraded India from “the world’s largest democracy” to an “electoral autocracy”, citing “muzzling” of the media, and overuse of defamation and sedition laws.

V-Dem (Varieties of Democracy) claims to produce the largest dataset on democracy with almost 30 million data points for 202 countries from 1789 to 2020.



"the diminishing of freedom of expression, the media, and
civil society have gone the furthest. The Indian government
rarely, if ever, used to exercise censorship as evidenced by its
score of 3.5 out of 4 before Modi became Prime Minister. By
2020, this score is close to 1.5 meaning that censorship efforts are
becoming routine and no longer even restricted to sensitive (to
the government) issues. India is, in this aspect, now as autocratic
as is Pakistan, and worse than both its neighbors Bangladesh and
Nepal. In general, the Modi-led government in India has used
laws on sedition, defamation, and counterterrorism to silence
critics. For example, over 7,000 people have been charged with
sedition after the BJP assumed power and most of the accused
are critics of the ruling party."


Riaz Haq said...

#India reports year's biggest #Covid_19 daily spike of the year on Saturday, with 24,882 infections, boosting the caseload to 11.33 million. India's COVID-19 deaths rose by 140 to 158,446, compared to an average of about 100 since early February.

MUMBAI (Reuters) - India reported its biggest daily spike in COVID-19 of the year on Saturday, with 24,882 infections as a resurgence since last month continues.

The new cases mark the highest 24-hour figure since December 19, according to health data, boosting the caseload of 11.33 million, now third after United States and Brazil, which has overtaken India, according to recent data.

India's COVID-19 deaths rose by 140 to 158,446, compared to an average of about 100 since early February.

India's caseload had been falling steadily since peaking in late September, but increased social gatherings and travel has caused a spike since early February, even as the country has started to vaccinate its vast population.

Maharashtra state, yet again the nation's epicentre of fresh cases, has imposed fresh lockdowns in several districts.

About 3,000 police will be deployed to enforce a week-long curfew and lockdown in the central Indian city of Nagpur from Monday after a 60% jump in coronavirus cases there, officials said on Friday.

The government is running a nationwide immunisation campaign aiming to vaccinate a fifth of the country's 1.3 billion people by August.

Riaz Haq said...

Innovation alone won’t end COVID-19
Tahir Amin


The only way to break this cycle of inequity is to suspend the IP on the vaccines and COVID-19-related treatments, while also compelling pharmaceutical companies to share their know-how to allow other potential manufacturers to scale up supplies. Over a year has passed since South Africa and India submitted a proposal requesting a waiver of IP under the World Trade Organization’s international Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (more commonly known as the TRIPS waiver). ...

Market enthusiasts, who are against waiving IP, have made a variety of arguments to justify their reasoning — while simultaneously moving the goalposts as it suits them to deflect any counterarguments and facts. One of the key arguments made by countries and pharmaceutical companies blocking the TRIPS waiver is that there are no other manufacturers in the world that can make the vaccines — in particular, the new mRNA versions. However, thanks to investigative journalism at the New York Times (https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/10/22/science/developing-country-covid-vaccines.html) and extensive research by AccessIBSA and Medicines Sans Frontieres that identified over 100 potential manufactures in the Global South that can potentially make mRNA vaccine, this has been dispelled (https://www.hrw.org/news/2021/12/15/experts-identify-100-plus-firms-make-covid-19-mrna-vaccines).

The ultimate argument that underlies resistance to waiving IP is the belief that doing so will harm innovation and future progress because pharmaceutical companies will be disincentivized to invest in future drug research and development. Here lies the crux of the issue if we are to address not only vaccine inequity, but also future pandemics and crises such as climate change. Western capitalism, and the hyper-financialized version of it we live in today, believes that the IP system is the best way to drive innovation and progress, including economic. It is a Faustian bargain that the system has made, cultivating a culture and belief that innovation and technological progress alone will solve all our problems. Those defending this bargain believe the individual good that the IP system incentivizes will benefit the collective good.

This pandemic has clearly shown us that the current IP system does not benefit the collective good. It only focuses on resolving part of the problem — that of innovation and technological progress. It does not solve the individualistic behaviour of nation states, corporations and humans generally, in terms of being incentivized to serve the collective good, unless there is some power and financial gain to be had. That it has taken this pandemic to see this even when many people in some of the richest countries struggle to pay for their medicines daily shows why vaccine inequity is a symptom of a larger problem within our market-driven global health system.

No amount of innovation and technology will change our morals and selfishness, and we live in a world in which leaders refuse to address this challenge. The idea of rewiring ourselves to think about the collective good is usually met with a shrug that it is our human nature to be selfish. It is time our leaders incentivized the collective good to address this pandemic and other impending crises, rather than clinging to the current system that only serves a few and fuels division. By doing so we may realize that everyone can win and be safe, including the economy — which is what the defenders of the IP system and market enthusiasts care most about.