India's pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020 has a large and prominent display of a miniature model of the controversial Ram Mandir at its entrance. Ram Mandir will replace the Mughal-era Babri Masjid that was destroyed by a Hindu mob in 1992. It represents Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of India as a Hindu Rastra built on the ruins of the country's Muslim past. Inaugurating the Indian pavilion, the country's trade minister Piyush Goyal told the media that "Prime Minister Narendra Modi personally gave us ideas and a lot of guidance on how to showcase India".
|Model of Controversial Ram Mandir at Dubai Expo|
“It is a great opportunity to showcase emerging new India to visitors who are coming from all over the world. Prime Minister Narendra Modi personally gave us ideas and a lot of guidance on how to showcase India as a modern vibrant technology driven international economy," trade minister Piyush Goyal, who inaugurated the India pavilion on Friday, told reporters.
World Expos have a long illustrious history going back 170 years. They represent an opportunity for participating countries to showcase their achievements in arts, sciences and technologies. First mechanical computer was shown at the 1862 London International Exhibition on Industry and Art. Alexander Graham Bell demonstrated the first telephone at Philadelphia in the 1876 Expo in the United States.
|Pakistani Pavilion at Dubai Expo|
Pakistan has a large pavilion at Dubai Expo which will remain open for six months. It will highlight opportunities for trade, tourism and investment in the country. The focus on the first month of Expo 2020 Dubai at the Pakistan Pavilion is Balochistan.
Pakistani pavilion attracted about 8,000 visitors when it opened yesterday. Speaking on the occasion, Pakistani representative Aftab Abro said: “The response has been outstanding and we have people appreciating all aspects of the pavilion, ranging from the colorful façade to the vibrant bazaar and also our custom-made Pakistani restaurant called ‘Dhaba’ that has been a great crowd-puller…We are grateful to the Expo 2020 Dubai for bringing the world to us so we could show them what Pakistan is all about. After taking their reviews, we were happy to learn that coming to our pavilion dispelled many misconceptions and doubts they had about Pakistan, due to some false information they got from unreliable sources. By physically coming to the Pakistan pavilion they said they experienced the real Pakistan.”
Modi is rubbing to Muslims that they can’t do a thing about his insults to Muslims. As always we are a deadbeat, especially the rulers of Dubai.
Why should Pakistan or Pakistanis care?
Singh: "Why should Pakistan or Pakistanis care?"
All sane peace-loving people should care when a historic place of worship of one religion is destroyed to replace it with a place of worship of a different religion.
While Pakistan restored and opened Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur for Sikh pilgrims, the Indian Supreme Court ordered the construction of a Hindu temple on the site where Babri Masjid stood for centuries.
This is proof that Hindoosthan has to be partitioned.dindooohindoo
The Indian Judiciary,in another case, has hanged a community,based on public perception. In other words,it has deprived a Title owner,of its Title – on the grounds of perceptual faith, and denied the title holder,the right to make a renunciation.
In matters of archaeo-legal evidence of history,the cumulative patterns of archaeological evidence over 1000s of years are to be used - on matters of theological coordinates.
For example,there is no Rama or Vishnu in the Rig Veda - which is a North Indian script (with an anti-south indian slant - which makes the absence of Rama,all the more stark)- and this disaster,stretches right upto the opus and treasure troves, of Ashoka.
Even assuming that Rama was a dark skinned limpet (as per the Ramayana) and a Dasyus - condemned into oblivion by the Rig veda - and Ashoka being of Saka origin,put Rama into the prolapsed uterus dustbin - there has to be a trail of evidence,pointing to the Rama birth place.
Nil ASI Pattern of evidence
There is no authenticated or carbon dated evidence on a papyrus,tablets,leaves,goat skin, cow skin, pottery,idol,wall carving,painting which even obliquely refers to any Rama birth site - except the gay love rantings of Tulsidas - which even Tulsidas admits, are not based on any revelations by Rama or Vishnu or Vrinda or Kaushalya
It is based on the beliefs and perceptions of Hindoos who are ignoramuses,imbeciles and heathens.
I challenge the ASI to show a Phallic worship object dated to the 5 century BC - as there is none.All the tales of Shiva are from Africa and West Asia - wherein phallic symbols and kamasutra engravings,are carbon dated to 2500 BC.
It is “neither History nor an Interpretation or Perception of History”.It is a Distortion of History.What is Public perception in a nation where idols drink milk & rum (not scotch), & 500 million people are swayed by a Rs 15,00,00 promise.During the time of Babar,the population of Hindoosthan,might have been 15 million, & that of Ayodhya,around 350000.
How can the “Muslims” of Hindooosthan – give a Mosque to the Hindoo Idolator - after the MODQUE WAS DEFILED AND DESTROYED ?
ASI Reports mean nothing,as the temple underneath, may have a stupa underneath (as it was a controlled excavation) – & there was no monolithic Hindoo faith in that time – just menial,savage,heathen pagan &satan worshippers.The ASI report has no proof that there was a Rama temple or that it was the birthplace of Rama, or that it was a temple of Vishnu.
ASI has done limited excavations in Ayodhya & I can bet that if intensive excavations are done across Ayodhya – there will be several Ram Janamsthans – set up by Brahmins,to milk hapless & heathen Hindoos – just like the Bible of Barnabus (appeared magically) & blew up the Jesus crucifixion &resurrection gospel.
The 5 acre pitt(y)ance
Will the Hindoos allow the Muslims to make a “Shaheed Babri Masjid” at the 5 acre spot ? Babar & the Mughals civilised the Hindoos !
Besides the above,how can a “Muslim” &even an “Indian Muslim” renounce a mosque to Rama ? Who is Mr Tulsidas - that the Indian Supreme Court had relied on ? What about VALMIKI ? Was the Quran revealed to the Prophet or to Ghazali ? Tulsidas was a hallucinated crank high on coke – in love with Rama,who spent 12 years in a jungle with only apes & some humans,with doubtful sexual leanings.
As per the Valmiki Ramayana – Sita called Rama an impotent pansy & Rama is quoted in the Ramayana – as stating to Seeta – that she should prostitute herself to apes,demons & Rama’s own brother ! Can such a man be a Prophet or a God or Imam ?
The minions of the Chaiwala,in the Indian Media,said that,the "UAE ruler said Jai Shri Ram",and billion Indian bumkins and heathens, believed it - and said that,Hindoos Conquered Arabia !
It was Fake news !
Similarly Rama and Ramayana,is FAKE BULL !
Chaiwala wants to make a Temple in Saudia !
People say - What is happening to Muslims and Arabs ? Nothing which was NOT ordained !
The HADEETHS of the Prophet, Prophecised the EOD and the SIGNS OF THE SAME - and Muslims SUPPORTING, JOINING AND BECOMING IDOLATORS - which is the end of the Loop,which started with Abraham and Ishmael,destroying idols and making the kabba !
"The Hour shall not be established until tribes of my Ummah unite with the idolaters, and until they worship idols." (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2219)
حَدَّثَنَا قُتَيْبَةُ، حَدَّثَنَا حَمَّادُ بْنُ زَيْدٍ، عَنْ أَيُّوبَ، عَنْ أَبِي قِلاَبَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي أَسْمَاءَ الرَّحَبِيِّ، عَنْ ثَوْبَانَ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم " لاَ تَقُومُ السَّاعَةُ حَتَّى تَلْحَقَ قَبَائِلُ مِنْ أُمَّتِي بِالْمُشْرِكِينَ وَحَتَّى يَعْبُدُوا الأَوْثَانَ وَإِنَّهُ سَيَكُونُ فِي أُمَّتِي ثَلاَثُونَ كَذَّابُونَ كُلُّهُمْ يَزْعُمُ أَنَّهُ نَبِيٌّ وَأَنَا خَاتَمُ النَّبِيِّينَ لاَ نَبِيَّ بَعْدِي " . قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ صَحِيحٌ .
"What I fear most for my nation is misguiding leaders. Some tribes among my nation will worship idols and some tribes among my nation will join the idolaters." (Sunan Ibn Majah 3952)
Chaiwala,by placing the temple model in Dubai,is MOCKING INDIAN MUSLIMS,DISPLAYING THE IMPOTENCE OF ARABS,and THROWING A GAUNTLET,TO THE ISLAMIC ORTHODOXY - AND PLEASING HIS MASTERS IN TEL AVIV !
It is no surprise that Indian Muslims pray to Gana-Pathy and Rama and Shiva and claim that they are sons of Rama and that Shiva was the son of Adam !
RSS has used Hindoo Osmotic Evil and MONEY,to destroy Indian Muslims and their religion !
Y is Chaiwala and Yogi Gobarnath so gung ho on Rama Temple ? It is money - perhaps 500 Billion USD,over next the next decade
Post Rama temple - at least 30-50 million Hindoo heathens,will visit the temple and donate on an average of USD 50,to an Idol - which will be pocketed by the priests ! This is 2 Billion USD,a year
The clowns will spend 1 week in Ayodhya,and spend on average of 20 USD per day,which is 6 Billion USD,a year
The clowns will spend around USD 50,on Rama Tourism,which is 2 Billion USD per year
The Hindoo clowns coming to Ayodhya,will cause a 100 fold rise,in real estate,land and hotel valuations and restaurant valuations.The RSS BANIA BRIGADE,have already cornered all the land and property,in Ayodhya,and will make a 30-50 Billion USD in incremental valuation per year
We can ignore the logistics profits,of moving 50 million dodos,in and out of Ayodhya !
All these numbers,will double every 3-5 years,and in a decade,you will have 500-800 Billon USD,which will fill up the coffers of the BJP,for a century ! dindooohindoo
THAT IS Y THE BIGGEST SUPPORTERS OF THE RAMA TEMPLE,ARE THE MUSLIMS OF AYODHYA !
In the heat of Evergrande and Covid - people have forgotten the 3 billion coke seizure at
Mundra in Gujarati Bania land !
The message is being missed !
The Chaiwala lost 3 Billion USD in its MARGINAL COST,based investment in Afghanistan - to the Taliban !
In return, an angel shipped 3 Billion USD of coke from Bander Abbas (Which is FAR away from Chahabar) to Mundra (a port owned by a scion of Chaiwala)
To ensure that the consignee DOES NOT EAT UP THE COKE - the good Taliban tipped off the DRI - which otherwise had NO CLUE !
It was also a message to the Chaiwala and RAW that - that the next container could be 21 tons of RDX (FCL CARGO IN HC 40 FEET CONTAINER) - like in Beirut/Lebanon - and in JNPT or any other port !
The Coke container was in BOND,in a CWC warehouse,in a PRIVATE PORT - and no one had a clue. Taliban HOPED that it would be caught - but when it was NOT - then they tipped off the Indian Duds !
Now the question is, WHAT WAS IN THE CONTAINER ? What is the purity and grade ?
Talcum Powder with COO of Afghanistan,consignor is Afghan, and it is shipped from BANDAR ABBAS (not Chabahar- which is closer!) - and TALCUM POWDER IS IMPORTED INTO MUNDRA - WHEN THE CONSIGNEE IS IN SOUTH INDIA (WHY NOT SHIP IT TO CHENNAI PORT TRUST ?)
AND NO ONE CHECKED THE TALCUM POWDER !
EVERYONE LOVES MUNDRA PORT - FOR OBVIOUS REASONS - EVERYTHING HAPPENS FAST - AS THE LUBE OIL,IS THE FACE OF GANDHI,ON A RS 2000 NOTE ! In Indian Private Ports,the entire CUSTOMS AND DRI AND ECO INT IS OUTSOURCED TO THE PRIVATE PORT (DE FACTO) ALTHOUGH, IN LAW, IT IS NOT ! THE OSTENSIBLE AIM IS PORT EFFICIENCY,MAXIMUM THROUGHPUT AND FASTEST SHIP TURNAROUND.
IT IS A WIN-WIN-WIN !
TALIBAN HAS PAID ITS DEBT,TO CHAIWALA !
TAIBAN HAS SOLD DRUGS WITH A MARGINAL COST OF 200 MILLION,FOR 3 BILLION USD
INDIANS WILL RECOUP SOME MONEY,AND RAW WILL DIVERT THESE DRUGS TO PUNJAB
THIS IS THE GENIUS OF THE TALIBAN !
Will the Indian Dodos be able to revive their nation, with the Rama Temple ?
Of course,If RAW has to sell these drugs in Punjab - it will have to downgrade the coke - and then claim it was destroyed and sell the pure coke (after blending) in Punjab.The strategem of RAW and IB,is to destroy the DNA of Sikhs,and the entire North East - via drugs - which then leads to crime,terror and trafficking !
Let us all set up Talcum powder factories in Afghanistan ! It must be very cheap, to make it viable,for an Indian Importer - located in South India !
With such an impotent,insipid and incompetent enemy,Pakistan should make haste !
Jiye Jiye Pakistan !
The Chaiwala lost 3 Billion USD in its MARGINAL COST,based investment in Afghanistan – to the Taliban !
In return, an angel shipped 3 Billion USD of coke from Bander Abbas (Which is FAR away from Chahabar) to Mundra (a port owned by a scion of Chaiwala)
To ensure that the consignee DOES NOT EAT UP THE COKE – the good Taliban tipped off the DRI – which otherwise had NO CLUE !
It was also a message to the Chaiwala and RAW that – that the next container could be 21 tons of RDX (FCL CARGO IN HC 40 FEET CONTAINER) – like in Beirut/Lebanon – and in JNPT or any other port !
The Coke container was in BOND,in a CWC warehouse,in a PRIVATE PORT – and no one had a clue. Taliban HOPED that it would be caught – but when it was NOT – then they tipped off the Indian Duds !
Now the question is, WHAT WAS IN THE CONTAINER ? What is the purity and grade ?
Talcum Powder with COO of Afghanistan,consignor is Afghan, and it is shipped from BANDAR ABBAS (not Chabahar- which is closer!) – and TALCUM POWDER IS IMPORTED INTO MUNDRA – WHEN THE CONSIGNEE IS IN SOUTH INDIA (WHY NOT SHIP IT TO CHENNAI PORT TRUST ?)
AND NO ONE CHECKED THE TALCUM POWDER !
EVERYONE LOVES MUNDRA PORT – FOR OBVIOUS REASONS – EVERYTHING HAPPENS FAST – AS THE LUBE OIL,IS THE FACE OF GANDHI,ON A RS 2000 NOTE ! In Indian Private Ports,the entire CUSTOMS AND DRI AND ECO INT IS OUTSOURCED TO THE PRIVATE PORT (DE FACTO) ALTHOUGH, IN LAW, IT IS NOT ! THE OSTENSIBLE AIM IS PORT EFFICIENCY,MAXIMUM THROUGHPUT AND FASTEST SHIP TURNAROUND.
IT IS A WIN-WIN-WIN !
TALIBAN HAS PAID ITS DEBT,TO CHAIWALA !
TAIBAN HAS SOLD DRUGS WITH A MARGINAL COST OF 200 MILLION,FOR 3 BILLION USD
INDIANS WILL RECOUP SOME MONEY,AND RAW WILL DIVERT THESE DRUGS TO PUNJAB
THIS IS THE GENIUS OF THE TALIBAN !
Will the Indian Dodos be able to revive their nation, with the Rama Temple ?
Of course,If RAW has to sell these drugs in Punjab – it will have to downgrade the coke – and then claim it was destroyed and sell the pure coke (after blending) in Punjab.The strategem of RAW and IB,is to destroy the DNA of Sikhs,and the entire North East – via drugs – which then leads to crime,terror and trafficking !
Let us all set up Talcum powder factories in Afghanistan ! It must be very cheap, to make it viable,for an Indian Importer – located in South India !
The Indian Police are corrupt,liars and thieves ! The DEA in India is abysmal – they have no INT ! The DRI discovers drugs by accident ! The Indian SME pharma units are MOSTLY INTO DRUGS INTERMEDIATES – WHICH ARE EXPORTED AND FOR WHICH THE GOI GIVES INCENTIVES ! THE DRUGS ARE MAKE FROM INDIAN INTERMEDIATES IN EAST ASIA – AND THEN EXPORTED TO INDIA AND USA – ALL WITH THE BLESSINGS OF THE INDIAN POLITY AND STATE !
THE INDIAN DEA SHARES NO INT WITH THE POLICE (AS THE POLICE ARE CORRUPT) AND THE POLICE INT HAS NO VALUE ! SO PARTY FOR DRUG DEALERS !
THAT IS Y TO DATE NO SEIZURE OF ANY VALUE HAS MADE IN INDIA OF DRUGS STOCKS AT KEY STOCKING POINTS ! ONLY THE USERS ARE CAUGHT – WHO ARE HAPLESS FOOLS ! THE LAW IS DESIGNED THAT WAY BY THE POLITY TO ENSURE THAT THE MAKERS AND IMPORTERS AND STOCKISTS ARE NOT CAUGHT !
With such an impotent,insipid and incompetent enemy,Pakistan should make haste ! dindooohindoo
Jiye Jiye Pakistan !
Oops: Former Air India A320 Aircraft Gets Stuck Under Foot Bridge. This isn’t the first time this has happened. In 2019, a truck carrying a former India Post Boeing 737-200 got stuck under a bridge in West Bengal. #India #BJP #modi #AirIndia https://onemileatatime.com/news/air-india-a320-stuck-under-bridge/
It’s not every day you see something like this. Then again, this also isn’t the first time that something like this has happened.
How an Air India plane got stuck under a bridge
Video has gone viral of a former Air India Airbus A320 getting stuck underneath a bridge on the Delhi-Gurugram highway near Delhi Airport.
Now, in fairness, this mishap has nothing to do with Air India as such. The plane no longer belongs to Air India, and was in the process of being transported in order to be scrapped, with the wings removed. This mistake is the fault of the company responsible for transporting the plane.
It’s pretty amazing that the plane is basically halfway underneath the bridge before the truck carrying it comes to a stop. I guess the truck was going at full speed, and wasn’t anticipating any problems.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not an expert on trucking logistics, but I’d assume that if you’re transporting an aircraft, you’d figure out exactly how much clearance you need, and then make sure you don’t get under a bridge with less clearance than that. But maybe that’s just me… 😉
This isn’t the first time this has happened
In 2019, a truck carrying a former India Post Boeing 737-200 got stuck under a bridge in West Bengal, so this Air India incident is the second time in a couple of years that we’ve seen something like this happen in India.
For that matter, even that wasn’t the first time such an incident had happened. Also in 2019, a China Southern Airbus A320 got stuck under a bridge in Harbin, China.
So, how do you get a plane “unstuck” from under a bridge? The solution seems to be to let air out of the tires of the trucks, so that they have just enough clearance to get out from under the bridge. On the plus side, at least it seems like in all of these cases there wasn’t any significant damage to the bridges.
A former Air India Airbus A320 got stuck underneath a bridge in Delhi, which is the third such incident we’ve seen in the past couple of years. While I imagine the logistics of transporting an aircraft fuselage are complicated, it’s still surprising to me that this has happened a few times now in a fairly short period.
Generally the solution here is to let air out of the tires. I suppose the damage to the plane isn’t a huge deal if the plane is just going to get scrapped, though the damage to the bridge is a different story.
Was it the result of the Indian VAX on the Pilot (as some in the US have said that the VAX can induce a seizure to a pilot) !
Was it the marvel of the Bengali brain,that the bridge had a loop, or just that the Bengali engineer took too much money - and the centre of the bridge,has too much sand ! Or perhaps the steel of the plane expanded - raising the plane height,or the quality of the concrete in the centre of the bridge (which is the max pressure point),just melted,leading to a loop in the middle !
And that is Y,Rama the Limpet used AN ARMY OF APES,TO MAKE A BRIDGE to Lanka,and used the SAME APES AS SOLDIERS,IN HIS WAR ON RAVANA,and used a MONKEY to SPY,ON HIS WIFE in Ravana's custody.
And that is Y,the PAF almost wiped out,the IAF in 1965
And that is Y,the PAF shot down Abhi-Na-Jao-Chod-Ke-Nandan !
And that is Y,the IAF jets keep crashing,when they are NEAR the Chinese Border
And that is Y,the Indian ADS shot down its own Chopper (full loaded with 7 officers) in Bugdam !
It is all in the Hindoo History ! dindooohindoo
One must not forget that it was the Mughals who brought the concept of basic hygiene and the SOP,for ablutions FOR HUMANS - for the Hindoos !
"While the Bidens of this world still talk about Gandhi, India’s role models have changed. ..(Anti-#Muslim) #Genocide is now openly demanded at public rallies. The “need” for ethnic cleansing can pop up in casual conversations" #India #Modi #Hindutva https://time.com/6103284/india-hindu-supremacy-extremism-genocide-bjp-modi/
And it is only the beginning. In neighboring Bihar, the government is asking people to report “suspected illegal migrants” and officials have been ordered to create awareness of the issue on “an urgent basis.” The state’s high court has demanded a detention center to house migrants, reminding the government that “deportation of illegal migrants is of paramount importance and in the national interest.” Bihar’s 17 million Muslims are on edge about their future. In next-door Bengal, which borders Bangladesh and is home to nearly 25 million Muslims, the BJP has been promising an Assam-like citizenship verification drive if it comes to power in the state.
The chief minister of India’s biggest and most politically important state, Uttar Pradesh, recently blamed Muslims for cornering government-subsidized food. Uttar Pradesh, along with Assam, has introduced a two-child policy blaming Muslims for a supposedly runaway population growth that officials say accounts for the backwardness of these states. The claim is not rooted in reality. Fertility rates among Muslims have in fact been falling rapidly.
But reality is no longer important. It bends to the requirements of the ruling party’s dehumanizing narrative against Muslims. As Jews in Nazi Germany were called “rats” and Tutsis in Rwanda in the 1990s were called “cockroaches,” so BJP members now refer to Indian Muslims as “termites” eating away at India’s resources, denying Hindus what is due to them in their own land.
The destruction of Gandhi’s legacy
The foundations of the secular republic that Gandhi died defending are thus being hollowed out ever more frantically. While Modi pays ritualistic homage to Gandhi, BJP leaders openly glorify Gandhi’s killer, who was a Hindu fanatic. Modi’s ministers and legislators freely call on people to shoot “traitors” and start pogroms, and are promoted rather than penalized for their actions. Modi himself partly owes his fan following and ascent to his lack of remorse over the 2002 pogroms in Gujarat in 2002, when he was chief minister. Hundreds of Muslims were killed and thousands rendered homeless.
Noticeably, not only did the current chief minister of Assam not apologize for the police excesses, he in fact trivialized the deaths of Hoque and Farid, calling Hoque’s death “just 30 seconds” of a three minute video. He also carried on with the eviction drive and even proudly tweeted photos of the rubble of the four mosques destroyed in it.
While the Bidens of this world still talk about Gandhi, India’s role models have changed. So have the standards of acceptable discourse in public and social life. Genocide is now openly demanded at public rallies. The “need” for ethnic cleansing can pop up in casual conversations on politics among friends or family. Death threats are used like punctuation marks in debates on social media.
On Oct. 2, Gandhi’s birthday was celebrated with much fanfare as the International Day of Non-Violence. Two new books on his assassination in 1948 were launched. In Karnataka, meanwhile, a 25-year-old Muslim man was found beheaded for his affair with a Hindu girl, allegedly by a local Hindu vigilante group.
Gandhi continues to be killed in a million ways in today’s India. Bijoy Baniya just added a flourish to it.
1 Thing the world is also admitting regarding Yogi Gobarnath !
He has killed COVID - w/o vaccines !
And the magic pill was Ivermectin !
But then the truth is that it was mixed with gobar and gau mutram and the WHO report is coming out soon !
But then I said - it can't be !
The Idea came from Trump ! The Aha moment !
But then as the Brits have shown - Indians are dutiful slaves - and today,Indians are selling IT products to the Brit ! dindooohindoo
Why do young #Indians support #Modi? He has not delivered #employment growth or kept his #economic promises but he speaks the language and aspiration of these #millennials. To many in #India's #Hindu majority, he assures them that the #BJP has their back. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-58716947
By Vivan Marwaha
Aspirational young Indians today are looking for role models who they believe will protect them, and they are attracted to politicians with whom they share stories and experiences. Language is a particularly emotional issue.
English has long been a reserve of the Indian elite, and an aspiration of middle-class Indians seeking upward social mobility.
But in the 2019 elections, Hindi-speaking politicians, shattering the last vestiges of these elites, were rewarded by voters, while the opposition Indian National Congress, led by English-speaking dynasts from the Nehru-Gandhi family, was nearly wiped clean from the country's "Hindi belt" - states mainly comprising Hindi-speaking people.
As I spoke to Indian millennials, they told me about how Mr Modi delivered speeches in Hindi to audiences in New York, London, and Sydney, and how proud that made them. The thinking went: "if he can make it there, so can we".
According to conventional wisdom, incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in trouble: the country was experiencing a 45-year high unemployment, disproportionately impacting India's youth, the world's single-largest labour force.
The economy had come to a crawl and a sense of malaise prevailed everywhere I went. Many of the millennials I was interviewing, including those in their 30s, were living at home with parents, reliant on their families for basic purchases.
Most of these people had voted for Mr Modi and his ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) five years earlier, in 2014, buying their promises of wide-scale development and hundreds of millions of new jobs for India's booming population of young people.
But conventional wisdom was turned on its head when the prime minister and the BJP were re-elected with an even bigger majority than the 2014 election, shattering decades-old political dynasties in their family fiefdoms.
The writing was on the wall: young Indians had firmly consolidated behind Mr Modi. Post-poll data confirmed this, with nearly 40% of those aged 18-35 voting for the BJP.
In many other countries, this may not make sense: why would young voters, who hadn't advanced much, seen their trust broken, and had arguably been set back by years under this regime, return the incumbent to power?
The answer to this question also defied conventional wisdom on Indian elections, given that India has a long record of voting out incumbent politicians.
But with millennials leading the charge, Indian politics has gone through a fundamental reordering: young voters want leaders who speak, pray, and look like them.
For decades, India was governed by English-speaking, Western-educated technocrats who shared little in common with the country's largely-agrarian and vernacular-speaking population.
Although many members of parliament and state assemblies came from the grassroots, those who wielded cultural and political power in Delhi did not.
In an unstable and volatile economy, Indian millennials seek leaders who promise stability and security, and Mr Modi and his party's messaging captured this sentiment to impressive results.
Shortly after the 2019 Pulwama bombings in Kashmir - and the subsequent air strike in Balakot in Pakistan - every BJP leader added the designation of "chowkidar" (watchman) to their Twitter handle, signalling their promise to Indians to protect them from all enemies - foreign and domestic.
Unprecedented #power crisis looms in #India. Over 50% of 135 coal-fired power plants don't have enough coal stock. Over 70% of India's #electricity is generated using #coal. #Energy Crisis threatens to derail India's post-#pandemic #economic recovery. https://www.bbc.com/news/business-58824804
This crisis has been in the making for months.
As India's economy picked up after a deadly second wave of Covid-19, demand for power rose sharply.
Power consumption in the last two months alone jumped by almost 17%, compared to the same period in 2019.
At the same time global coal prices increased by 40% and India's imports fell to a two-year low.
The country is the world's second largest importer of coal despite also being home to the fourth largest coal reserves in the world.
Power plants that usually rely on imports are now heavily dependent on Indian coal, adding further pressure to already stretched domestic supplies.
What is the likely impact?
Experts say importing more coal to make up for domestic shortages is not an option at present.
"We have seen shortages in the past, but what's unprecedented this time is coal is really expensive now," said Dr Aurodeep Nandi, India Economist and Vice President at Nomura.
"If I am [as a company] importing expensive coal, I will raise my prices, right? Businesses at the end of the day pass on these costs to consumers, so there is an inflationary impact - both direct and indirect that could potentially come from this," he added.
If the crisis continues, a surge in the cost of electricity will be felt by consumers. Retail inflation is already high as everything from oil to food has become more expensive.
Vivek Jain, Director at India Ratings Research described the situation as "precarious".
In recent years, India's production has lagged as the country tried to reduce its dependence on coal to meet climate targets.
India's Power Minister RK Singh, in an interview with The Indian Express newspaper, said the situation is "touch and go" and that the country should brace itself for the next five to six months.
A senior government official, on the condition of anonymity, confirmed to the BBC that the situation is worrying.
If this persists, Asia's third largest economy will struggle to get back on track, warns Ms Zohra Chatterji, the former Chief of Coal India Limited - a state-run enterprise responsible for 80% of the country's coal supply.
"Electricity powers everything, so the entire manufacturing sector- cement, steel, construction - everything gets impacted once there is a coal shortage."
She calls the current situation a "wake-up call for India" and says the time has come to reduce its over-dependence on coal and more aggressively pursue a renewable energy strategy.
What can the government do?
The question of how India can achieve a balance between meeting demand for electricity from its almost 1.4bn people and the desire to cut its reliance on heavily polluting coal burning power plants has been a major challenge for the government in recent years.
The vast scale of the problem makes a short-term solution unlikely, according to Dr Nandi.
"It's just the sheer scale of things. A huge chunk of our energy comes from thermal [coal]. I don't think we've reached that stage yet where we have an effective substitute for thermal. So yes, it's a wake-up call, but I don't think the centrality of coal in our energy needs is set to be to be replaced anytime soon, he said.
Experts advocate a mix of coal and clean sources of energy as a possible long-term solution.
India uses Coal as Base load power.Rains and flooding have disrupted the mining and logistics of Coal India Limited.Indian Imports Coal from Borneo,Aussie and South Africa. Rising Oil prices means that many nations are using Coal fired IPPs - and so,Coal demand is High,and there is a lack of labour in mines,and coal logistics,is also constrained.
NET RESULT = COAL PRICES ARE BLOWING UP ! dindooohindoo
AND THIS IS THE TIME WHEN THE COAL LABOUR UNIONS IN SOUTH AFRICA AND AUSSIE,WILL GO ON STRIKE !
This is when PRC has shut down Power guzzlers - and soon,these will need to be reopened to employ people ! Then there will be disaster ! Edible oils will be used as bio fuels,and thus,push up edible oil prices !
In India - Peak Load is Hydel,Naptha,Gas,Oil and Nuke - and all stretched,or too expensive (like oil)
Due to opening of economy,power demand has exploded,and there is no power - so there will be price gouging and racketeering !
IPPs will pass through coal price rise to SEBs - who are bankrupt,and the users will NOT take the hikes - which will be retrospective ! That will push the SEBs and IPPs into more doom,and also sink the BANKS !
Renewables (besides hydel)will fail,as renewables need a critical mass of spinning/reactive power,from base load power plants.
Prices of power intensive sectors such as metals,steel and ferro alloys will spike ! The Only nation in paradise zone = Norway,which has HYDEL AND OIL - and so does Canada !
Since Indian Manufacturing throughput will crash,quantum of logistics will reduce, but fuel rates are high and will keep rising - and so,several logistics carriers will vanish - and then you will have severe logistics bottlenecks,and spikes in freight rates - which means more shortages !
This will destroy the entire Indian export value chain - and Pakistan has to step in, to capitalise on the same.
MOST IMPORTANTLY,THIS POWER WILL COMPLETELY DESTROY THE SME SECTOR - SO DEMO + GST + POWER SHORTAGE + POWER PRICES ! AND THAT IS WHAT CHAIWALA WANTED !
BUT THE MOOT POINT IS - Y DID THE CHAIWALA NOT SEE THIS ? CHAIWALA DID NOT SEE COVID OR PLA IN ARUNACHAL !
WHO IS THE INDIAN POWER MINISTER ?
THE NAME OF THE CLOWN IS RK SINGH ! THE BABOO WAS HOME SECRETARY A FEW YEARS AGO,AND HAS SPENT A LONG TIME MAKING TOILETS IN UP AND BIHAR ! THE MAN DOES NOT KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN COAL AND GOBAR AND GOBAR GANESH !
NET RESULT - THEY ARE ALL PRAYING TO GOBAR GANESH !
THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A NATION IS RUN BY BANIAS,MARWARIS,GUJARATIS,JAINS AND RAJ POOTS (RK SINGH AND RAJNATH SINGH LOONGIWALA)
THESE ARE THE IDOLS WHICH THE GHAZNAVIDS CAME TO BREAK AND WHICH ANAS HAQQANI HAS PROMISED TO COMPLETE - AND LIBERATE THE DALITS AND MUSLIMS OF INDIA !
THESE BANIAS AND BRAHMINS CANNOT RUN INDIA ! IT IS ONLY THE MUGHALS WHO GAVE SALVATION TO INDIA !
THE LAST SACKING OF SOMANTH WAS DONE IN 1024 (WHICH SUMS TO 7) AND 1096 YEARS HAVE ELAPSED SINCE (WHICH IS ALSO A SUM OF 7).THE TIME OF TALIBAN HAS COME !
The business heads expressed keen interest to make investments in Pakistan in their respective domains and also briefed them about their companies. The president later witnessed the signing of three MoUs between Pakistan’s Special Technology Zones Authority with Mastercard, Galaxy racer (E-sports) and Shorooq Partners VC Funds.
President Dr Arif Alvi on Saturday inaugurated Pakistan Pavilion at Dubai Expo 2020. First lady Samina Alvi and Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood were also present on the occasion. The president also visited different stalls of the pavilion where he was briefed about Pakistani products.
The president while meeting with heads of leading investment and technology firms in Dubai said that Pakistan is offering promising business opportunities to foreign investors through one-window operations in sectors of innovation and technology. The President said the one-window facility under Special Technology Zones
Authority is aimed at encouraging and facilitating the foreign investors to expand their information technology footprint in Pakistan.
He said the government has set up the STZA with a mandate to provide world-class digital and physical infrastructure across the country and put Pakistan on global technology radar. The President invited the companies to invest in Pakistan’s diverse sectors particularly in e-business. The business heads expressed keen interest to make investments in Pakistan in their respective domains and also briefed them about their companies. The president later witnessed the signing of three MoUs between Pakistan’s Special Technology Zones Authority with Mastercard, Galaxy racer (E-sports) and Shorooq Partners VC Funds.
Talking of Indian Coal dis-ass-ter !
Imagine the state of MOD - headed by Rajnath Singh Loongiwala who boarded a Rafael in a Loongo and placed THREE LEMONS ON IT !
3 LEMONS - FOR THE 3 MUSKETEERS !
MUSKETEER 1 - Chaiwala
MUSKETEER 2 - Fat Pancho Amit Shah
MUSKETEER 3 - Loongiwala Rajnath Singh
What will be the plight of MOD of GOI ?
Indian Army - no ammunition and obsolete ammunition
IAF - no spares and obsolete tech
Navy - Limited and obsolete ammunition
Most importantly - NO FUEL FOR MILITARY TO SUSTAIN A 7 DAY WAR ! IN THESE TIMES,THE GOI WILL BE STOCK PILING THE SECRET MILITARY OIL RESERVES ! IF CHINESE SATS TRACK EVERY OIL TANKER AND THE PIPELINES OF IOC ... - THEY WILL UNCOVER THE STRATEGIC OIL RESERVES - AND THEN LIKE THE HOUTHIS - SEND IN THE DRONES !
CHINESE SATS BY NOW WOULD HAVE MAPPED OUT THE ENTIRE INDIAN MILITARY FUEL SUPPLY CHAIN - AND ALL THAT REMAINS - IS THE LOCATION OF THE MILITARY RESERVE LOCATION !
Is this the time for the dual PLA and Pakistan Army attack ? dindooohindoo
This is the time !
#Indian #Farmers Confront #Modi Head-on! Farmers’ goal is not necessarily to defeat the #BJP, whom polls suggest will cruise to an easy victory. BJP's top elected leader Yogi Adityanath, a #Hindu monk and protégé of Modi, is very popular. #FarmersProtest https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/22/world/asia/india-farmers-protests-modi.html?smid=tw-share
“This is now a fight for those who died,” Jagdeep Singh, whose 62-year-old father was among those run over by the jeep, said from the family farm. “And those who are living, this is now a fight for all of us until we die.”
Elsewhere, under the harsh light of an LED lamp in an unfinished brick farmhouse, Ramandeep Kaur wept over the loss of her cousin, Lovepreet Singh, a 19-year-old who was studying English in hopes of getting an education and living in Australia.
“Until they take back those laws,” she said, “the farmers’ agitation will continue.”
The deadly incident took place in a remote corner of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state and a prize in elections to be held early next year. The protesters were shadowing top members of Mr. Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, or B.J.P., as they began to campaign.
The farmers’ goal is not necessarily to defeat the B.J.P., whom polls suggest will cruise to an easy victory. The party’s top elected leader, Yogi Adityanath, is a Hindu monk and protégé of Mr. Modi who is popular with the party’s Hindu base, and the opposition is fragmented. Instead, the farmers aim to draw more national and international attention to their plight.
The protesting farmers think that Mr. Modi’s market-friendly overhaul last year of the nation’s agricultural laws will put them out of business. India’s Supreme Court has suspended implementation, and the government has proposed a series of amendments. The farmers balked, saying they would settle for nothing less than their full repeal.
Further action could take years, given the court’s full docket, but the farmers fear the suspension will be lifted if they let up.
No one disputes that the current system, which incentivizes farmers to grow a huge surplus of grains, needs to be fixed. The protesters fear the speed — the laws were passed in mere weeks — and the breadth of the changes will send the price of crops plunging. Mr. Modi’s government argues that introducing market forces will help fix the system.
“The composition of farming has to somewhat change,” said Gopal Krishna Agarwal, a B.J.P. spokesman on economic issues. “The farm sector needs heavy investment, and that can come from the private sector.”
'While I'm Alive, I'll Keep Speaking.' Journalist Rana Ayyub's Fight to Expose the Truth in India
Ayyub is one of India’s most famous journalists, and a thorn in the side of the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. She rose to prominence after she self-published Gujarat Files, a 2016 book about the 2002 violence in the state of Gujarat that left at least 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus dead. Ayyub’s work accused Modi, then chief minister of Gujarat, and his allies of being complicit in the anti-Muslim violence and included undercover audio recordings of politicians in India’s now-ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. (Modi has never been formally charged and has said his government used its “full strength” to “do the right thing.”) Since then, Ayyub has struggled to find editors at mainstream Indian publications willing to publish her work. This summer, she joined the American newsletter platform her Substack. She also writes a regular column for the Washington Post, and has occasionally written for TIME, including a TIME cover story in April highlighting the Modi government’s mismanagement of the country’s devastating second wave of COVID-19. And for the past several months, she has endured an escalating campaign of intimidation from Indian authorities and supporters of the ruling party.
“Of all the cases of journalists we work on around the world, at the moment Rana is one of my top concerns,” says Rebecca Vincent, the director of international campaigns at rights group Reporters Without Borders (RSF). “The hate she’s facing has been escalating for years but it’s so intense at the moment. We have a history of journalists being killed with impunity in India, and frankly it’s very possible that could be repeated. When I receive urgent calls from Rana, my immediate instinct is concern for her life.” The Indian government should know, Vincent says, that the world’s eyes are watching out for Ayyub’s safety. “If something happens to her, it will be very obvious where it came from and why,” she says.
Although India is often called the world’s largest democracy, U.S.-based nonprofit Freedom House downgraded India from “free” to “partly free” in March, citing a decline in civil liberties since Modi came to power in 2014, including the intimidation of journalists and activists. Independent journalists, especially women, face particularly intense harassment, abuse and rape threats. In 2017, prominent journalist Gauri Lankesh, known for her outspoken criticism of the Hindu nationalist government, was shot dead in Bangalore. RSF notes that India “is one of the world’s most dangerous countries for journalists trying to do their job properly” and the group’s annual World Press Freedom Index ranks India at 142 out of 180 countries. Modi’s government set up a committee in 2020 to improve India’s ranking; the committee said in March that the RSF methodology lacked transparency and identified a “Western bias” in the index. (India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting did not reply to a request for comment.)
'While I'm Alive, I'll Keep Speaking.' Journalist Rana Ayyub's Fight to Expose the Truth in India
Ayyub is used to living on the edge. In 2018, for example, BJP supporters shared on social media a pornographic video doctored to include Ayyub’s face in an attempt to discredit her. For more than four years, she has received a barrage of anonymous death and rape threats on her social media. But for the last several months, she has been the victim of a campaign of intimidation by Indian authorities that has taken even her by surprise. In June, the Uttar Pradesh police opened an investigation into Ayyub and other Muslim journalists after they tweeted a video showing a violent attack against a Muslim man. Police and government officials said the man’s claim was faked and police accused Ayyub and several others of attempting to “create animosity between Hindus and Muslims,” saying they did “not make an attempt to establish truth in the case.” In a statement at the time, the Uttar Pradesh government said it placed “absolute sanctity to rule of law, civil liberties and freedom of expression” and the investigation was not lodged “due to any witch-hunt.”
In June, the central government’s Income Tax Department sent Ayyub a summons, investigating her income in relation to her fundraising for COVID-19. (During the height of India’s pandemic earlier this spring, she traveled the country distributing humanitarian aid that she had raised funds for via her online following.) Shortly after, the Enforcement Directorate began investigating Ayyub’s foreign sources of income. Ayyub describes the accusations as baseless. She says she has been followed in the street by mysterious cars, and that she has been forced to disclose to authorities confidential information and emails, including with her editors. On Sept. 27, she filed an appeal against the Income Tax Department, where her case is pending. (The department did not respond to TIME’s request for comment.)
After an experience being tailed by an unknown car for 90 minutes in Mumbai, Ayyub wrote a letter for one of her family members to publish in the event of her death. “It just says that in case anything happens to me, I don’t want you to let my death go in vain,” she says. “I want the future generation of journalists, writers, activists to know that even if my life is short-lived, it’s a fight worth fighting. While I’m alive, I’ll keep speaking.”
#Facebook researchers found that two #Hindu nationalist groups with ties to #India's PM #Modi's #BJP party post inflammatory anti-Muslim content on the platform that have caused hundreds of deaths of innocent #Muslims in #Delhi, elsewhere. #HindutvaTerror
Inflammatory content on Facebook spiked 300% above previous levels at times during the months following December 2019, a period in which religious protests swept India, researchers wrote in a July 2020 report that was reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.
Rumors and calls to violence spread particularly on Facebook’s WhatsApp messaging service in late February 2020, when communal violence in Delhi left 53 dead, according to the report. India is Facebook’s biggest market with hundreds of millions of users.
Hindu and Muslim users in India say they are subjected to “a large amount of content that encourages conflict, hatred and violence on Facebook and WhatsApp,” such as material blaming Muslims for the spread of Covid-19 and assertions that Muslim men are targeting Hindu women for marriage as a “form of Muslim takeover” of the country, the researchers found.
Private Facebook groups made up of like-minded users generated more divisive content. Inflammatory content primarily targeted Muslims, the researchers wrote.
Facebook was so concerned about how its services were tied to communal conflict that it dispatched researchers to interview dozens of users. A Hindu man in Delhi told them he received frequent messages on Facebook and WhatsApp “that are all very dangerous,” such as “Hindus are in danger, Muslims are about to kill us,” the researchers reported.
There is “so much hatred going on” on Facebook, one Muslim man in Mumbai was quoted as telling the researchers, saying he feared for his life. “It’s scary, it’s really scary.”
Many of the users believed it was “Facebook’s responsibility to reduce this content” in their feeds and on WhatsApp, the report said.
Facebook researchers determined that two Hindu nationalist groups with ties to India’s ruling political party post inflammatory anti-Muslim content on the platform, according to two separate reports earlier this year by teams investigating abuse of the company’s services. The researchers recommended one of the organizations be kicked off for violating the company’s hate speech rules, according to one report, but the group remains active.
The other group, researchers said, promotes incitements to violence including “dehumanizing posts comparing Muslims to ‘pigs’ and ‘dogs’ and misinformation claiming the Quran calls for men to rape their female family members.” That group also remains active on Facebook, and wasn’t designated as dangerous due to “political sensitivities,” the report said.
The reports show that Facebook is privately aware that people in its largest market are targeted with inflammatory content, and that users say the company isn’t protecting them. The documents are part of an extensive array of internal Facebook communications reviewed by the Journal that offer an unparalleled look at how its rules favor elites, its algorithms breed discord, and its services are used to incite violence and target vulnerable people.
#US Commission on International Religious Freedom has recommended #India be placed on a 3religious freedom blacklist for the 2nd year in a row. It also recommended that #Blinken impose sanctions on Indian officials. #Hindutva #Islamophobia_in_india https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/10/28/india-religious-freedom-uscirf-muslims-minorities-bjp-modi-cpc
Since taking power in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist government has been accused of persecuting minorities, especially its 200 million Muslims.
The current USCIRF chair Nadine Maenza, who earlier served as a commissioner and vice-chair of the commission and has been vocal against the deteriorating religious freedom situation in India, spoke to Al Jazeera about the attacks on minorities, the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the National Register of Citizens (NRC), the jailing of activists and protesters, and steps President Joe Biden should take to address these concerns.
What does #India’s #Modi government have against #Bollywood? Top male movie stars all happen to be #Muslim. #BJP does it for the sheer joy of bashing Muslims. #Islamophobia_in_india #Hindutva #BJP #SRK #AryaanKhan #Islamophobia #HindutvaStateTerror https://www.economist.com/asia/2021/10/30/what-does-indias-government-have-against-bollywood
If bollywood is India’s secular religion, then the Khans—Aamir, Salman and Shah Rukh—are its holy trinity. The three actors, who are unrelated, have for three decades sat at the top of India’s colossal Hindi-language film industry, their films, their characters and their personas wallpapering the country’s imagination. They are, perhaps as much as the prime minister and the captain of the national cricket team, the most recognisable faces in India. They also happen to be Muslim.
For most Indians, to the extent they think about it at all, that is a source of pride: the Khans’ pre-eminence a sign of the country’s tolerant secularism. But it sticks in the craw of Hindu chauvinists, who are well represented by the government of Narendra Modi, the prime minister, and his Bharatiya Janata Party (bjp). All three Khans have faced criticism from bjp figures in recent years, along with the usual gibes that they should “go to Pakistan”. By the debased standards of Indian political discourse, where even the use of the indigenous Urdu language is seen as “Abrahamisation”, that is not surprising.
What is odd, however, is that the government’s assault on Bollywood has—after a drumbeat of harassment against smaller figures and lesser-known producer-types—reached the very top of the industry. On October 3rd, the Narcotics Control Bureau (ncb), a national law-enforcement agency, arrested several people in a drug bust on a cruise ship off the coast of Mumbai, where the industry is based. Among them was Aryan Khan, the 23-year-old son of Shah Rukh Khan, arguably the best-loved of the trinity. The ncb claimed to have seized lots of drugs, though it has since admitted that none were found on Aryan. He was nonetheless remanded in custody and denied bail until October 28th, even as it was granted to others. News channels have been running blanket coverage. Politicians from across the country have weighed in.
That the target this time is Muslim is only an added bonus. Harassing Bollywood carries more important benefits for the bjp, including annoying the government of Maharashtra, a rich western state of which Mumbai is the capital. That antipathy dates from 2019, when the local Shiv Sena, itself a pro-Hindu party, broke its long-standing alliance with the bjp. Mr Modi and his cronies have never forgiven their erstwhile allies.
Yet there is a more fundamental reason for the bjp’s assault on Bollywood than electioneering, political point-scoring or the sheer joy of bashing Muslims. Since coming to power in 2014, the bjp has demolished the national opposition, co-opted independent institutions, tamed India’s once-vibrant press and obstructed free speech. It is building a cartoonish personality cult around Mr Modi, printing his picture on everything from sacks of government-subsidised rice to covid vaccination certificates.
Bollywood may well be the last independent source of influence in India. It is inherently patriotic, its superstars mostly apolitical and, after the past year, most of its members terrified of speaking in any manner that might attract Delhi’s attention. But that is not enough. The fact that its movies show Hindus and Muslims—and all sorts of Indians—getting along, that it tackles issues of social injustice, and that its characters and the real-life people behind them espouse liberal values, is simply too great a threat to Mr Modi’s narrow vision of a Hindu nation. If ensuring that Indians can imagine themselves only on the bjp’s terms means destroying one of country’s great cultural and commercial successes, that is a price the party and its prime minister seem willing to pay.
#Hate campaign in #India against #Urdu for being a ‘Muslim’ language. #Hindu nationalist groups target #Indian-born language after clothing brand comes up with a #Diwali advertisement with Urdu words. #HindutvaTerror #Islamophibia_in_india https://aje.io/h6frnb via @AJEnglish
Last week, Hindu right-wing forces in India forced a leading firm to withdraw its festive season advertisement after it featured a couple of words from the Urdu language, which in the popular imagination in the country is a “Muslim language”.
The company, FabIndia, issued an advertisement for Diwali – a significant Hindu festival that falls next month – showcasing its latest collection of clothes. The text at the top read: “Jashn-e-Rivaaz”.
“Jashn” in Urdu means a celebration while “Riwaaz”, which is actually “Riwaaj”, means tradition. The title translated to “A Celebration of Tradition”.
But a young parliamentarian belonging to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), who often makes headlines for his Islamophobic remarks, was not happy.
“Deepavali is not Jashn-e-Riwaaz,” 30-year-old Tejasvi Surya posted on Twitter, calling Diwali by its more traditional name.
“This deliberate attempt of Abrahamisation of Hindu festivals, depicting models without traditional Hindu attires, must be called out.”
FabIndia is a household name in India and sells clothes, furniture, home furnishings and food items. It has hundreds of showrooms across the vast country and abroad.
Surya said the company “must face economic costs for such deliberate misadventures”.
Soon, other members of the BJP and other Hindu nationalist groups started attacking FabIndia on social media, accusing the brand of “hurting” the religious sentiments of Hindus.
“The Hindutva project sees Urdu as a ‘Muslim’ language. And invisibilising Urdu is part of the larger project of marginalising the Muslim community, in fact, physically eliminating it,” Nivedita Menon, professor at the Centre for Political Studies at New Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University, told Al Jazeera.
“Hindutva” refers to a century-old Hindu supremacist movement which seeks to convert India into an ethnic Hindu state.
The Urdu language was born in northern India during the Mughal rule. Linguists and historians say Urdu and Hindi originally developed from Khadi Boli, a dialect of the Delhi region, and Prakrit. It also borrowed heavily from Persian, Turkish and Arabic languages.
Until the British colonised the subcontinent, Urdu and Hindu languages were collectively referred to as Hindustani. It was British linguist John Gilchrist who for the first time classified and defined Hindustani into two broad categories – words inspired largely by Persian and Arabic were identified as Urdu, and those inspired by Sanskrit became Hindi.
However, spoken Urdu is similar to Hindi and the two share a common grammar and a large percentage of their vocabulary.
Indian Home Minister Amit Shah's Islamophobia
Speaking in Dehradun, the capital of the Indian state of Uttarkhand, India's Hindu Nationalist Home Minister Amit Shah accused the Congress party of Muslim appeasement. He was angry that Muslim residents of the city were permitted to block traffic for a couple of hours during Friday prayers on some streets. Talking about the Opposition Congress Party that had permitted Muslims to do Friday prayers on the streets of Dehradun, Amit Shah said, "The people who appease (Muslims) will never work for the Land of Hindu Gods".
#India’s economy isn’t the #China hedge global investors imagine it to be. #Modi is having the kind of year for which the Latin phrase annus horribilis (horrible year) was invented. India is the unlikeliest and a very reluctant member of the #Quad https://fortune.com/2021/11/03/india-economic-reform-modi-china-hedge-investors-ipo-growth-vasuki-shastry/
India is the unlikeliest and, until recently, a very reluctant member of the Quad: the quasi-geopolitical alliance with the U.S., Australia, and Japan. As a lower-middle-income nation, it is outweighed in GDP terms by its heftier, more developed counterparts. India’s increased enthusiasm for the Quad, demonstrated by Prime Minister Modi’s participation in the Quad summit hosted at the White House, reflects the nation's growing anxiety about China, the giant neighbor with whom it has sparred on its Himalayan border and by whom it has been surpassed in almost every economic measure.
Just as New Delhi turned toward the Quad as a hedge to deal with an assertive China, long- and short-term foreign investors seem to be warming to the idea of India as a hedge against their China exposure. That shift in sentiment is a product of geopolitics and fraught U.S.-China trade tensions, as well as the rising cost of doing business in China and Beijing's recent regulatory crackdown against vast swaths of the tech industry.
Modi is having the kind of year for which the Latin phrase annus horribilis was invented. The country is emerging from a deadly second wave of the pandemic, with over 34 million infections and almost 460,000 fatalities since the pandemic's start. Economic growth will recover from the dismal 7.3% contraction of 2020, but the momentum behind reform has been lost. Modi’s promise to deliver “minimum government, maximum governance” looks increasingly elusive. Domestic business sentiment has yet to regain pre-lockdown levels, and lack of access to credit has stalled investment.
Modi, early in his tenure, took pride in the slogan that India was the “fastest-growing economy” in the G20. Those heady years of high growth are long past.
But India’s economic sluggishness has not dampened the enthusiasm of foreign investors, portfolio investors, and private equity funds, who continue to pour vast sums into the country’s public and private markets. A recent survey of 1,200 business leaders by consulting firm Deloitte showed that India attracted record foreign direct investment (FDI) during the pandemic totaling an estimated $81 billion in 2020-21. Portfolio investor appetite for Indian stocks remains keen, with the benchmark Sensex Index amongst the top performers in emerging markets this year. Private equity and venture funds have also found rich pickings in private companies and startups. Hotel chain Oyo, partly owned by SoftBank, and payments platform Paytm, backed by Ant Group and Berkshire Hathaway among others, are preparing to raise billions through IPOs this month.
Pakistan is very satisfied and glad to be participating in the very unique expo, because the China International Import Expo (CIIE) helps in "improving Pakistan's overall trade with China" and also "increases Pakistan exports to China," Pakistan Ambassador to China Moin Ul Haque told the Global Times in an exclusive interview on Friday.
Pakistan has been participating in the event from the beginning. Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan attended the first CIIE in 2018. He told media that CIIE would serve as a great opportunity for Pakistan to boost its exports.
The latest two expos were held during the pandemic period, and many Pakistan businessmen and companies could not participate physically. However, Pakistan businessmen still have access to this expo through online pavilions, the ambassador said.
Pakistan is exporting a large number of products in China. Textiles, leather, IT and food products including rice, mangoes and vegetables were among the major products sold to China, according to the ambassador.
In recent years, there has been a very substantial increase in the two countries' trade, he noted. China is currently the second-largest export destination for Pakistan.
Trade between China and Pakistan totaled $12.56 billion in the first half of 2021, up 63 percent year-on-year. Pakistan exports to China reached $1.73 billion, up 83.6 percent year-on-year, according to Chinese Ministry of Commerce data in August.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, in the first three quarters of the year, Pakistan exports to China increased by 75 percent, and trade has increased by more than 60 percent, according to the ambassador. "We hope that by the end of this year, we will be able to achieve record figures."
As a flagship project under the Belt and Road Initiative, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor has made significant progress, which also witnessed a closer China-Pakistan relationship with a shared future.
#Modi's #BJP-linked #Hindus block #Muslim Friday prayer by spreading cow-dung over the location in #Gurgaon #India. #Hindutva #Islamophobia https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/gurgaon-namaz-namaz-blocked-again-protesters-occupy-gurgaon-site-spread-cow-dung-2608171
rows of cow dung cakes spread across the ground last week - after right-wing groups held a "puja" that included spreading the dung over the namaz prayer spot - remain untouched.
Gurgaon: Opposition to namaz at open spaces in Haryana's Gurgaon reared its ugly head again today, after members reportedly affiliated with Hindu groups occupied a site in Sector 12A to stop Muslims from praying.
Visuals from the site showed people sitting around - they assembled in the morning and claimed to be making a volleyball court. In effect, though, they are preventing prayers from taking place.
"We are sitting here quietly... but will not allow prayers. We will plan for a game here," one of those occupying the ground, Parmila Chahar said, while another, Veer Yadav, said: "We will set up a net... will build a volleyball court here (and) children will play. Will not allow namaz, no matter what."
Nearby, rows of cow dung cakes spread across the ground last week - after right-wing groups held a "puja" that included spreading the dung over the namaz prayer spot - remain untouched.
Muslim organisations, who have faced protests and displays of intimidation at this and other sites for the past several weeks, have said they will not offer prayers at this site today.
"We have told everyone that until we have an agreement with our Hindu brothers, we will not be offering prayers here... DC saheb has also given us a week," they said.
Today's protests are the latest in what has become a weekly stand-off over between the two sides, with residents of some Gurgaon neighbourhoods - boosted reportedly by members of right-wing groups - have hit out at the Muslims praying at what they say are public spaces.
The site in Sector 12A is one of 29 (it used to be 37) "designated" for the offer of namaz after an agreement between Hindus and Muslims following similar clashes in 2018.
Some of these spaces are, in fact, public property, such as one in Sector 47. Others, however, are private property, on which no possible objection can be raised to the offer of namaz.
Last week (before Friday prayers on November 5) Gurgaon authorities withdrew permission to offer namaz at eight of these "designated" sites. The administration said this was after "objections" and warned that if similar "objections" were raised at other sites, "permission will not be given there".
"Consent from the administration is necessary for namaz in any public and open place," it said, adding, "If local people have objections at other places also, permission will not be given..."
The administration had said a committee - to be constituted by Deputy Commissioner Yash Garg - will hold discussions on identifying alternative sites, but it is unclear if the committee has met since or if there has been progress in selecting such spaces.
The week before November 5 police detained 30 protesters from Sector 12A; in videos of the stand-off, they could be seen with placards that read "Gurgaon administration, wake up from your sleep".
Last month they were vociferous protests in several other sectors too, including 12A and 47, at which dozens of people had gathered chanting 'Jai Shri Ram' and holding placards reading 'stop namaz in open spaces'; police had been forced to deploy in large numbers.
Protesters claim "Rohingya refugees" use the prayers as an excuse to commit crimes in the area.
Facebook is stifling an independent report on #humanrights in #India. Dangerous material hasn’t been removed by #Facebook, including posts comparing #Muslims to locusts & calling for #Hindus to gather weapons for violence against Muslims. #Modi https://www.wsj.com/articles/facebook-is-stifling-independent-report-on-its-impact-in-india-human-rights-groups-say-11636725601?st=j2d5ztlpbyc7b1w&reflink=desktopwebshare_twitter via @WSJ
The Journal reported in August 2020 that Facebook’s then top public-policy executive in India had opposed applying Facebook’s hate-speech rules to a Hindu nationalist politician and others. The executive didn’t respond to requests for comment at the time and later departed the company. A group of civil-society organizations citing the Journal’s reporting published an open letter urging Facebook to “address dangerous content in India.”
Ritumbra Manuvie, who co-founded an Indian-diaspora-led group based in The Hague called Stichting London Story, which studies disinformation and hate speech, said her organization has provided Foley Hoag with a variety of pieces of content that she says violate Facebook’s rules.
But much of the material remains on Facebook, she said, such as a video that has received an estimated 40 million views in which a Hindu speaker tells an audience that Muslims and Islam should be exterminated. Facebook’s “lack of oversight” of content on its services has “normalized dehumanization and hate speech against Indian Muslims,” Ms. Manuvie said.
“They are trying to kill it,” said Ratik Asokan of India Civil Watch International, one of the organizations that provided the law firm with input. Mr. Asokan said that Facebook has raised technical objections through the law firm that have caused delays, such as changing definitions of what can be considered hate speech and included in the report, undermining what Facebook said would be an independent study. The law firm hasn’t provided a timeline for completing it, he said.
Much of the material his group has flagged as dangerous hasn’t been removed by Facebook, even though it violates Facebook’s rules, he said, such as posts comparing Muslims to locusts and calls for Hindus to gather weapons in preparation for violence against Muslims.
“With a complex project like this, the goal is to be thorough, not to meet an arbitrary deadline,” said Andy Stone, a spokesman for Facebook, a unit of Meta Platforms Inc., FB +3.87% referring to the timing of the report. “We look forward to our independent assessor, Foley Hoag, completing their India assessment,” he said, referring to the law firm Facebook has commissioned to write the report.
In recent years, Facebook has released executive summaries of human rights impact assessments it commissioned on its operations in Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Cambodia. It released the full version of one it commissioned on Myanmar. In each instance, it said the consultants it engaged completed their work in less than one year.
Following the Journal’s Facebook Files report last month, India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology wrote to Facebook’s top executive in India to ask for details on how the company monitors and removes inflammatory content on its platform, according to government officials.
Four #Muslims booked in #Indian state of #UP for #sedition over hoisting ‘Pakistan flag’; #Police found no #Pakistan flag was found during a search of the two houses. #Modi #Hindutva #BJP #Islamophobia_in_india https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/lucknow/four-booked-in-up-for-sedition-over-hoisting-pakistan-flag-7620392/ via @IndianExpress
Gorakhpur SSP Vipin Tada said the police were investigating the matter. Also, they were verifying the writing in Urdu found on one of the flags handed over to them.
Police said businessmen Talim, Pappu, Ashiq and his brother Asif were booked after an FIR was lodged under IPC Section 124-A at Chauri Chaura police station. No arrest has been made so far.
FOUR PEOPLE from two families in Gorakhpur’s Chauri Chaura town have been booked for sedition following a complaint that they hoisted the Pakistan flag on the rooftop of their houses, police said on Friday.
The two families have told the police that they had put up religious flags, which were mistaken for the Pakistan flag, said Gorakhpur Additional Superintendent of Police Manoj Kumar Awasthi. They removed the religious flags once social media posts claiming that they were Pakistan flags started doing the rounds.
No Pakistan flag was found during a search of the two houses, the police said. The families handed over to the police four flags, which they said had been mistaken for the Pakistan flag.
#Biden & #Blinken hypocrisy: Both attack #China but ignore #UCIRF recommendation to put #India on religious freedom violation list "systematic, ongoing and egregious" violations of religious freedom — for 2nd consecutive year. #Modi #Hindutva #Islamophobia https://www.axios.com/india-biden-administration-religious-freedom-caatsa-923a25ba-ef34-4bda-8409-f47732c6e356.html?utm_campaign=organic&utm_medium=socialshare&utm_source=twitter
The State Department has bypassed a recommendation from an independent government commission to name India to its "red list" of countries engaged in "systematic, ongoing and egregious" violations of religious freedom — for the second consecutive year.
Why it matters: The omission is the latest example of leniency applied to India by the administration and U.S. lawmakers. Strengthening ties with the world's largest democracy has featured prominently in both the Trump and Biden administrations' strategy for countering China.
Officials in New Delhi now regard China as their biggest security threat, aligning with U.S. concerns about Beijing's intent around the world.
Former President Trump had no qualms about embracing Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a Hindu nationalist who was once banned from entering the U.S. over "severe violations of religious freedom" during his time as governor of the state of Gujarat.
For President Biden, who's pledged to place human rights at the "center" of his foreign policy, the issue is far more delicate.
Driving the news: Nadine Maenza, chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, told Axios the Biden administration "missed an opportunity" to publicly pressure India by naming it as a "country of concern."
"We're disappointed that they're not looking at the conditions on the ground and how they're deteriorating," she said.
Since Modi's election in 2014, India has experienced democratic backsliding and frequent outbreaks of anti-Muslim mob violence.
Critics say Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party has turned a blind eye to discrimination and imposed laws designed to marginalize Muslims.
Between the lines: The Biden administration appears to have made the judgment it would be more productive to address India's worsening human rights conditions in private, unless a more dramatic threshold is crossed.
"With China's belligerent rise — and India's willingness to work with the U.S. and other partners — the Biden administration will not want to put the relationship at risk over the current level of concern in these areas," says Richard Rossow, a U.S.-India expert at CSIS.
In the meantime, Biden has pressed ahead by hosting Modi at the White House and forging new ties through the Quad, a strategic dialogue between the U.S., India, Japan and Australia that Beijing views as hostile.
Biden also reportedly plans to invite India to his "Summit for Democracy" next month.
The big picture: This is not exclusive to India. U.S. administrations have long been more critical of human rights abuses in adversarial countries like Iran, for example, than in friendly ones like Egypt or Saudi Arabia.
Zoom out: The next test of Modi's free pass will be whether India is sanctioned for acquiring Russia's S-400 air defense system. That move is required under the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).
Turkey was sanctioned in 2020 for the same purchase, but unlike India, Turkey is a NATO ally. Its use of Russian military equipment could lead to U.S. security concerns, since the Russians could gain insight into U.S. defense capabilities.
"I think CAATSA sanctions would be simply disastrous for the transformation of the [U.S.-India] relationship," Ashley Tellis, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told Axios.
UAE Princess and activist Hend bint Faisal Al Qasim expressed her outrage against the right-wing Indian Journalist Sudhir Chaudhary and called him Islamophobe and Terrorist. https://www.southasianjournal.net/princess-hend-of-uae-calls-zee-news-anchor-islamophobic-terrorist/
Princess Hend, who has the Twitter handle @ladyVelvet_HFQ is a very popular activist on Twitter. She has often raised issues of human rights and minorities all over the world.
The UAE Princess lashed out after the reports of Sudhir Chaudhary being invited to speak in UAE at an International Seminar. The organizers of the event have invited Sudhir Chaudhary as one of the speakers.
Sudhir Chaudhary, who works was for Zee TV owned by Subhash Chandra, a BJP functionary and old RSS connected personality has had a troubled history. He was once arrested and sent to Tihar Jail for conduction a sting operation against an industrialist and which was allegedly a scam to extort money.
In recent years Zee TV has been running stories against Indian Muslims and Sudhir Chaudhary, as one of the leading anchors has used his position and platform to indulge in anti-Muslim propaganda. He ran many shows against the Tabligh Jamaat, accusing them of spreading COVID-19. The Indian courts had exonerated the Tabligh Jamaat against any such crime.
As an anchor of Zee TV, Sudhir Chaudhary played a crucial role in hate propaganda against the Muslims who had gathered to protest in Shaheen Baugh Delhi during the CAA/NRC protest. His deliberate use of fake news and slander against Muslim women and students did a lot of damage to the legitimate protests.
Then Sudhir Chaudhary went on to conduct a show which accused Muslims of involvement in a fictional term called Land Jihad.
The outrage by Princess comes at a very crucial time when Muslims of India have been under a constant barrage of Islamophobic News and Hatred and most times that has resulted in mob violence and bitterness faced by the Muslims of India in day-to-day life.
The protest by Princess comes at a crucial time when there is a rising Islamophobia and India and it’s important to shame such intolerant Islamophobic behavior so that it deters such journalists or men with influence on misusing their power against innocent minorities and if they do, there is some price to pay
#Indian anchor Sudhir Chaudhary ‘dropped’ as speaker at #AbuDhabi event after #UAE princess calls Zee News anchor #terrorist. "Terrorist not welcome in UAE" #Hindutva #Islamophobia #Modi #BJP https://www.jantakareporter.com/entertainment/sudhir-chaudhary-dropped-as-speaker-at-abu-dhabi-event-after-uae-princess-calls-zee-news-anchor-terrorist/349077/ via @Janta Ka Reporter 2.0
Sudhir Chaudhary of Zee News has been ‘dropped’ as a speaker from an Abu Dhabi event after a UAE princess called the controversial TV anchor a terrorist. UAE princess Hend bint Faisal Al Qasim on Sunday took to Twitter to inform that Chaudhary had been dropped from the event.
She wrote, “Sudheer Chaudhary dropped from the panel of speakers at the Abu Dhabi Chartered Accountants.”
The princess also shared a protest note from the members of the Abu Dhabi chapter of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, who expressed their disagreement with the decision to invite Chaudhary as a speaker to the body’s forthcoming event.
They wrote, “We the undersigned members of the Abu Dhabi chapter of ICAI, writing this note to express our disappointment and disagreement with the decision of including controversial journalist Sudhir Chaudhary in the panel of speakers in the forthcoming seminar of the chapter.”
The signatories of the letter also highlighted the Zee News anchor’s ‘criminal misdeeds’ as they wrote, “No doubt that Sudhir Chaudhary is a popular TV personality but he has been alleged to have involved in numerous unprofessional journalism and criminal misdeeds.”
Princess Hend on Saturday had reacted angrily to the decision to invite Chaudhary to the UAE despite the latter’s role in promoting Islamophobia through his TV broadcasts. Addressing Chaudhary as a ‘terrorist,’ the UAE princess had reminded the organiser how the controversial TV anchor had been routinely defaming Islam and its followers.
Princess Hend on Sunday had reminded as targeting any race or religion with hate speech was a crime in the UAE. She had tweeted, “In the United Arab Emirates hate speech against any religion, caste or race is a crime. #Peace #Tolerance #HardWork #Expo2020 #Love #Focus #Growth.”
She had added, “When a criminal spews venom onto a society, that invites violence causing the burning of homes, businesses and mosques. A #MuslimHolocaust is started, together with the abuse of other minorities- Dalits/Sikhs as well. Police sit & watch. I will not welcome such hate in the UAE.”
Chaudhary has been at the forefront of Indian TV anchors, often referred to as lapdogs or TV criminals, in fuelling hatred against Muslims in India. He had led a campaign to defame Indian Muslims by blaming them for spreading coronavirus in 2020. Several Indian high courts later concluded that blaming the members of the Tablighi Jamaat for the spread of the virus was part of propaganda.
Ram temple movement bigger than our freedom struggle: VHP joint general secretary
Meanwhile, RSS joint general secretary Arun Kumar said that the Ram Temple movement “awakened” the Hindu society and “became a moment of self-realisation for the Hindus”.
VHP’s joint general secretary Surendra Jain courted controversy on Sunday saying that the Ram temple movement was “bigger than the freedom struggle”.
“In 1947, India got its political freedom. But through the movement for the Ram Temple, we got our religious and cultural freedom. This was an even bigger movement than the freedom struggle,” a statement from the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) quoted Jain as saying.
He further claimed that the Ram temple had “begun the journey to an era of Ram Rajya” and India’s fortunes would change for the better once the temple was constructed. “The present century belongs to that of Ram…The donation campaign became a bridge to unite the whole nation. It proved only Ram can unite the nation. Secular politics has only divided the nation,” Jain added.
Meanwhile, speaking at the launch of a book titled Sab Ke Ram, RSS joint general secretary Arun Kumar said on Sunday that the Ram temple movement “awakened” the Hindu society and “became a moment of self-realisation for the Hindus”.
The event was organised by the VHP.
“Those who were saying the sentiment of Hindutva is on the wane have had their doubts answered by the tide of donations received for the Ram temple. The Ram temple movement is Hindu society’s self-realisation. It awakened the Hindu society…The movement was not a result of a reaction but of the commitment of the Hindus,” a VHP statement quoted Kumar as having said.
He added, “Our dream is of a harmonious society. Our tolerance is not because of our cowardice, but because of our courage and enterprise.”
The Ram temple movement, involving leaders of the VHP, RSS and the BJP, had led to the demolition of the Babri Mosque in Ayodhya in 1992.
In 2019, the Supreme Court ruled in favour of the Hindus and granted the disputed site to them even as those accused of the Babri Masjid demolition were acquitted.
The construction of Ram Temple, which is being carried out by the Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust, is at an advanced stage. It is expected to open to the public by December, 2023, just ahead of Lok Sabha polls.
#Modi's Politics of Hate Come for #India's #Christians! Santa Claus set on fire & #Hindu goons disrupt service in Haryana on #Christmas!! Days before, a #Hindu religious congregation allied with #BJP/#RSS made chilling calls for #Muslim genocide!!! https://www.haaretz.com/world-news/.premium-modi-s-politics-of-hate-now-come-for-india-s-christians-1.10495913
As the Hindu Rashtra progresses apace, calls for genocide no longer shock. It is business as usual. Indian democracy is disintegrating, and it’s time for the world to wake up and respond, before it is lost, irretrievably, and at an inconceivable cost.
"Every Hindu" was exhorted to pick up weapons to "protect" their religion from Muslims. "There is no more time…there’s no other way…there’s no solution apart from" getting ready to kill them, the speakers declared.
"Nothing is possible without weapons. If you want to eliminate their population then kill them. Be ready to kill and be ready to go to jail. Even if 100 of us are ready to kill 20 lakhs [two million] of them [Muslims], then we will be victorious, and go to jail," one of the speakers said, adding she was prepared to be "maligned" like Gandhi’s assassin, Nathuram Godse, but would still "pick up arms to defend my Hindutva from every demon who is a threat to my religion."
The hatemongers made a hair-raising comparison between 'culling' Muslims as part of a "cleanliness drive," drawing a parallel with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s swach bharat abhiyan, his "Clean India" campaign. They praised the ethnic cleansing model used by Myanmar against the Rohingya.
At a Hindutva rally in New Delhi, whose footage went viral at the same time as the Haridwar hate fest, attendees raised their arms in a straight arm salute and swore an oath that "Till our last breath, we shall fight, die for and if need be, kill, to make this country a Hindu Rashtra, a Hindu-only nation." At both meetings, the parallels with Nazi Germany were unmistakable.
One attendee commented defiantly after the footage had spread over social media: "No one can stop India from becoming a Hindu Rashtra."
Even worse, the politics of hate have become so mainstream in India now that for two days not a single leader of the opposition condemned the calls for genocide which had already gone viral on WhatsApp; finally, Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted a condemnation. The police reluctantly registered a complaint which failed to name a single person despite all the extremists being identifiable.
This is the same India where a Muslim comedian was jailed for a joke he didn’t even tell. The police claimed that he could have told a joke which would be offensive to Hindus.
The RSS makes no secret of the fact that Muslims, whom it blames for the partition of India in 1947, should be second-class citizens with no claims to the public square. And they celebrate Modi for propagating their views.
Extremists valorize him for the 2002 riots in Gujarat where 1000 Muslims died in riots under his watch as the state’s governor. Ever since Modi took office as prime minister, Muslims have been lynched for possessing beef, their traditional occupations of leather and butchery criminalized and public prayers disrupted.
In #India, calls for #Muslim #genocide grow louder. #Modi’s silence is an endorsement. Is this the type of “democracy” #Biden and other allies are championing? #Islamophobia #Hindutva #BJP #MuslimLivesMatter @RanaAyyub https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/12/29/india-muslims-hindus-genocide-elections-modi/?tid=ss_tw
“The first time it was reported that our friends were being butchered there was a cry of horror. Then a hundred were butchered. But when a thousand were butchered and there was no end to the butchery, a blanket of silence spread. When evil-doing comes like falling rain, nobody calls out ‘stop!’"
These lines, written by the German poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht, came to me as I heard the horrifying speeches delivered by Hindu nationalists during a religious conference this month, when leaders issued direct calls for genocide against Muslims.
“If 100 of us are ready to kill two million of them, then we will win,” said Pooja Shakun Pandey, a leader of Hindu Mahasabha, a militant organization, at a conference in the city of Haridwar, 150 miles north of New Delhi. “Be ready to kill and go to jail.”
At the same event, another Hindu seer invoked the crackdown against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar as a model for what can be done to drive Muslims away, a monstrous event that has been covered in the media.
The Dharma Sansad (Hindu convention) was attended by members of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling party. Videos of the packed event have been circulating on social media. Attendees made pledges to turn India into a Hindu nation. Unsurprisingly, the calls for violence and extermination have been met with silence by Modi and others — a silence that translates as an endorsement.
Inciting violence is a crime in India, but Pandey and the other speakers remain free. The police are supposed to be investigating but have been very slow to act — since they know full well these leaders have the protection of the ruling political class.
In fact, these Hindu leaders have now been emboldened to form a paramilitary force of monks who they claim will lead an armed fight against the 220 million Muslim population in India.
Days after the conference, Tejaswi Surya, Modi’s handpicked youth leader and a BJP member of parliament, called for bringing Indian Muslims and Christians back to Hinduism, “the mother religion.” He then tried to walk back his comments.
What is happening in India, where calls for genocide and ethnic cleansing are a centerpiece of our political debates? Where the Hindu nationalist who assassinated Mohandas K. Gandhi, a global symbol of nonviolent resistance, is glorified by national leaders.
What is happening in India, where the majority Hindu community fails to repudiate acts of terror unleashed in its name? Where Muslims are lynched on the streets, where Christmas celebrations are attacked, where the government has blocked the charity of human rights icon and Nobel laureate Mother Teresa from receiving international donations.
What is happening in India, where Suresh Chavhanke, the influential owner of a right-wing nationalist news channel, calls for people to “fight, die and kill if required” to make India a “Hindu nation” at an event on Dec. 19 in the national capital as the cameras rolled and the police looked on.
What is happening in India, where law enforcement is more likely to investigate journalists over tweets and the sons of critical public figures over alleged marijuana possession, than go after fanatics calling for mass murder?
What is happening in India, where the captain of the Indian cricket team, Virat Kohli, loses his position for defending a Muslim colleague who was targeted for his faith?
The answer is as loud and clear as the hate spewed at those events, as the mobs that have been given a free pass to attack minorities.
Tilak-Jinnah #Lucknow pact of 1916 embodied #interfaith harmony that is much needed in modern-day #India. Initially, #Jinnah was a member of both Congress & #Muslim League. He was popularly known as an “ambassador of #Hindu-Muslim unity”. https://scroll.in/article/968926/the-tilak-jinnah-pact-embodied-communal-harmony-that-is-much-needed-in-modern-day-india via @scroll_in
The 1916 Lucknow pact
Around the same time, in 1913, Jinnah had finally joined the Muslim League. Remarkably, he continued to be a member, simultaneously, of the Congress, which he had joined in 1906. He was held in high esteem in both Congress and Muslim League circles, and was popularly known as an “ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity”. Tilak and Jinnah had already worked together in the previous decade. Hence, a confluence of India’s two main political streams led to the historic Lucknow Pact in 1916.
When we look back at India’s freedom movement, we see two milestones when Hindu-Muslim cooperation reached its zenith. One was the 1857 War of Independence, when the two groups fought shoulder to shoulder against “Company rule” – the colonial advancements of the East India Company – from Peshawar to Dhaka. The other was the Lucknow Pact between the Congress and the Muslim League in December 1916, whose principal architects were Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Mohammed Ali Jinnah.
How did such a remarkable pact between two apparently dissimilar parties, which would be unthinkable in today’s highly-polarised and intolerant atmosphere, happen? For any major breakthrough to happen in politics, two propitious developments, one objective and the other subjective, have to come together. There has to be a turn in the external circumstance conducive for a bold move to be made. There also has to be an internal resolve among leaders to conduct a new experiment.
The outbreak of the First World War in 1914 created such a situation, which made the British government seek cooperation of Indian public and political parties in its war effort. This naturally entailed a willingness to give some concessions in the form of constitutional reforms.
Around the same time, a few highly significant changes had taken place in the political situation in India. Tilak had been released in 1914 after he completed his six-year imprisonment in Mandalay, Burma, after being convicted in a sedition case in 1908. The following year, he was re-admitted into the Congress.
Thus, the bitterness of the split in the Congress between the “extremists” and “moderates” at its 1907 session in Surat was now a thing of the past. Tilak had emerged as an even more popular and respected leader of the Congress because of his imprisonment. The prolonged prison experience had further steeled his belief that Hindu-Muslim unity was a pre-requisite for the advancement of the Indian demand for Swaraj. He also concluded that Britain’s deep involvement in the First World War had opened a new window of opportunity to seek constitutional reforms for self-rule.
#Pakistan National Security Policy document emphasizes the need for #economic security. It also highlights #Modi's threat: “The rise of Hindutva-driven politics in India is deeply concerning and impacts Pakistan’s immediate security.” #Kashmir #trade https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/explained/article/3164176/what-does-pakistans-first-national-security-policy-say-about
On China and Pakistan, the document talks about deep-rooted historical ties, shared interests, mutual understanding and strategic convergence. The mega infrastructure project ‘China-Pakistan Economic Corridor’ is described as one with support across Pakistan and one that can jump-start Pakistan’s economy and domestic growth.
However, there is a deliberate attempt to downgrade China’s importance, according to Kugelman. “Pakistan may be trying to send a message that Beijing doesn’t occupy as dominant a role in its national security calculations as many believe it does,” he said.
Regarding the US, there seems to be an attempt to ignore the current strain in bilateral ties. Although the Pakistani Prime Minister has not received a call from US President Joe Biden since he assumed office, the document talks about the long history of bilateral cooperation between the two sides. It also describes the US as “critical” for regional peace and stability and glosses over its current tussle with China.
The document acknowledges that cooperation between the US and Pakistan has narrowed down to counterterrorism only, and hoped other areas can also be worked on together soon.
Iran and Afghanistan are mentioned, but most countries in the Gulf and West Asia are clubbed together as are Russia and Central Asia.
Since the withdrawal of the US from Afghanistan last year and the Taliban coming to power, Pakistan has seen several fatal attacks, according to data from the South Asia Terrorism Portal.
Most of the violence has been attributed to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), an offshoot of the Afghan militant group, encouraged by developments next door. Chinese assets have also been targeted, including attacks in northern Pakistan and the southern port of Gwadar.
#Hindutva could devour both #India and the #BJP. In a formally secular India, #Hindu religion indeed seems to have become the opium of the people, a mass distraction from the transformative social agenda that the country needs. #Modi #Islamophobia https://www.business-standard.com/article/opinion/autonomous-hindtuva-could-devour-both-india-and-the-bharatiya-janata-party-122052300133_1.html
With the rapid radicalisation of sections of Hindu society, the Hindutva project has become dangerously autonomous. It is no longer possible to see it only as an electoral strategy of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Today one does not need to even presume the direct hand of the BJP or the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh behind Hindutva’s every move.
Its exponential social growth may have placed it beyond their control. In a formally secular India, religion indeed seems to have become the opium of the people. When Marx described religion as “the sigh of the oppressed ...
#India rejects criticism over ‘snarling’ lion statue atop new parliament. Demeanor of the lions in the new cast differed significantly from the original depiction and that instead of looking "benevolent and regal", they now "snarled". #Modi #BJP #Hindutva https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-62131457
The Indian government has defended the look of the national emblem on top of the new parliament building amid criticism over its appearance.
The new statue, adapted from an ancient Indian sculpture, was unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday.
The 6.5m (21ft 3in)-tall cast shows four Asiatic lions mounted back-to-back on a circular disc.
Critics say the new lions look "ferocious" and stray from their original depiction.
Opposition leaders have also criticised the government, saying that the new avatar of the emblem - adapted from the Lion Capital of Ashoka, a sculpture that was atop one of the several pillars erected by Emperor Ashoka during his reign in 250BC - was a "brazen insult to India's national symbol".
But a federal government minister on Tuesday dismissed the criticism, saying the statue was a "perfect replica" of the original "except for the size".
"Sense of proportion and perspective. Beauty is famously regarded as lying in the eyes of the beholder. So is the case with calm and anger. The original Sarnath Emblem is 1.6-metre high whereas the emblem on the top of the New Parliament building is huge at 6.5 metres," Hardeep Singh Puri wrote on Twitter, posting photos comparing the original emblem and the new statue.
The minister added that the if an exact replica of the original were to be placed on the new building, "it would barely be visible beyond the peripheral rail".
A senior government official called the installation of the emblem an "important milestone in the decolonisation" of the capital city.
But many social media users pointed out that the demeanour of the lions in the new cast differed significantly from the original depiction and that instead of looking "benevolent and regal", they now "snarled".
India’s government is exporting its #Hindu nationalism. Example: #Leicester in #UK. #Modi paints India as a kind of Hindu Zion. #Islamophobia is rampant among bjp stalwarts. Authorities have bulldozed Muslim homes in #Delhi & #BJP ruled states. #Hindutva https://www.economist.com/asia/2022/09/29/indias-government-is-exporting-its-hindu-nationalism
The violence that erupted two weeks ago between Muslims and Hindus in the English city of Leicester, home to a large population of Britons with South Asian ancestry, appears at last to be dying down as police flood the streets. It began with brawls and quickly escalated into attacks on mosques and temples.
Events in faraway Leicester bear on Banyan’s Asian preoccupations, largely because of the reaction of the government of India. Its high commission in London condemned the “violence perpetrated against the Indian community in Leicester and vandalisation of premises and symbols of [the] Hindu religion”, but, pointedly, did not condemn Hindus’ violence against Muslims.
Admittedly, Pakistan decried a “systematic campaign” of violence and intimidation against Muslims. But then Pakistan, a state founded on putting Islam (and by extension communalism) at its core, would look after its own, wouldn’t it? The Indian state, by contrast, long sought to represent a secular ideal that rose above communal divisions.
That ideal also informed the internationalist, inclusionary rhetoric of India’s foreign policy. The notable omissions in the Indian High Commission’s statement are indicative of a break in policy since the rise to power in 2014 of Narendra Modi, the prime minister. He is cheerleader-in-chief for Hindutva, a strident form of Hindu nativism promoted by his Bharatiya Janata Party (bjp).
The Indian government’s response was notable in another respect. Most of Leicester’s South Asian Muslims have their ancestral roots not in Pakistan but, like its Hindus, within the borders of India itself. Mukul Kesavan, an Indian writer, writes that to identify only with its Hindus “is to withdraw...the ancestral claim to India from the Muslims of Leicester.”
This is all of a piece with the bjp’s majoritarian approach at home, where Hindus constitute four-fifths of the country’s 1.4bn people and Muslims about one-seventh. Islamophobia is rampant among bjp stalwarts (though Mr Modi usually carries a dog whistle). When Hindus and Muslims have clashed in Delhi or in bjp-ruled states, authorities have bulldozed Muslim homes in retribution. Mr Modi’s Citizenship Amendment Act of 2019 grants Indian citizenship to refugees from neighbouring countries—so long as they are not Muslim.
As Mr Kesavan argues, standing up for Hindus abroad bolsters Mr Modi’s standing among Hindus at home. Mr Modi has long understood this aspect of personal power. Before the pandemic he staged huge rallies for the Indian diaspora in America and Britain. On visits abroad he pointedly combines diplomacy with prayer. Mr Modi paints India as a kind of Hindu Zion.
In the American capital this week the foreign minister, S. Jaishankar, lambasted those supposedly spreading false views of India, such as the Washington Post. He defended the government’s suspension of the rule of law and the internet in majority-Muslim Kashmir as motivated only by pure intentions. The minister is representative of Hindutva at the heart of the foreign-policy establishment. A paper in International Affairs, an academic journal, by Kira Huju of Oxford University describes how Indian diplomats hewing to the secular, internationalist line have been squeezed out, silenced or marginalised in favour of hardline hacks. Not only that, diplomats abroad must now promote a Hindu-inflected alternative medicine known as Ayurveda, as well as take instruction in the promotion and practice of yoga.
Thousands of mosques targeted as Hindu nationalists try to rewrite India’s history | India | The Guardian
Shamsi Jama Masjid, an 800-year-old mosque in Uttar Pradesh, is the latest flashpoint in a dispute that could eventually turn violent
Hannah Ellis-Petersen in Uttar Pradesh
Sun 30 Oct 2022 01.00 EDT
In a small, darkened office in Budaun, where dusty legal books line the walls, two lawyers have fallen into a squabble. VP Singh and his taller associate BP Singh – no relation – are discussing Shamsi Jama Masjid, the mosque that has stood in this small town in Uttar Pradesh for 800 years.
According to the lawyers, this grand white-domed mosque, one of the largest and oldest in India, is not a mosque at all. “No no, this is a Hindu temple,” asserted BP Singh. “It’s a very holy place for Hindus.”
Records dating back to 1856 make reference to the working mosque, and according to local Muslims, they have been praying there undisturbed since it was built by Shamsuddin Iltutmish, a Muslim king, in 1223. The Singhs however, have a different version of events. In July, they filed a court case on behalf of a local Hindu farmer – and backed by the rightwing Hindu nationalist party Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha (ABHM) – alleging that Shamsi Jama Masjid is not a mosque but an “illegal structure” built on a destroyed 10th-century Hindu temple for the god Shiva. Their petition states that Hindus have rightful ownership of the land and should be able to pray there.
Except, the two bickering lawyers can’t quite agree on the historical facts. BP Singh initially claimed that the original Hindu temple was destroyed by a Muslim tyrant king – but then VP Singh contradicts him.
“Not destroyed, altered,” said VP Singh. “Most of the original Hindu temple is still there.” They claim as evidence a lotus flower painted on the inside of the mosque dome. But when the Observer was given access to the mosque, there was no such Hindu motif, and instead it was the calligraphy of a Qur’anic verse. There was also no sign of an alleged “hidden locked room filled with Hindu idols” in the mosque, which VP Singh claimed he had seen in the 1970s as a child. Instead, the room in question was a store cupboard, filled with cleaning materials and prayer mats.
The pair also could not settle on exactly when Shamsi Jama Masjid, which they refuse to call a mosque, began to be used by Muslims for prayer five times a day as it is today. After BP Singh stated that Muslims were praying there up till the 1800s, VP Singh leaned over to mutter quietly to his associate: “No no don’t say that, don’t say that.”
More loudly, VP Singh then proclaimed: “Actually no this wasn’t a mosque, it was never used for namaz [Muslim prayer] until recently when the Muslims forcibly occupied it and tried to convert it into a mosque.” They claimed to have “proof” but were unable to find it.
“When the Muslims ruled, we Hindus were all persecuted, we were killed and tortured,” added BP Singh. “Now we are taking back what is rightfully ours.”
The case has been met by puzzlement from local Muslims, who are contesting it in court. “How can you claim this is not a mosque?,” said Anwer Alam, legal counsel for the mosque committee, pointing up to the imposing white domes. “No Hindu has ever prayed at this mosque since its inception 800 years ago. This suit has no legal grounds.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today unveiled the logo for India's G20 presidency. The logo depicts a lotus flower (which is also the BJP party symbol).
The Prime Minister underscored that the seven petals of the lotus represent seven continents of the globe and seven notes of music, adding that the G20 will bring the world together in harmony.
"I congratulate countrymen on the historic occasion of India's G20 Presidency. 'Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam' is the signature of India's compassion for the world. Lotus portrays India's cultural heritage and faith in bringing the world together," he said.
The G20 is the premier forum for international economic cooperation representing around 85 per cent of the global GDP, over 75 per cent of the global trade, and about two-thirds of the world population.
"This G20 logo is not just a symbol, it is a message, an emotion running through our veins. It is a resolve, which is now being included in our thoughts," PM Modi said elaborating on the logo.
The G-20 Summit in India in 2023 will reflect the spirit of वसुधैव कुटुंबकम…One Earth, One Family, One Future!
India At 75: Hindu Faith Bottled And Home-delivered
High in the Himalayas, where the mighty Ganges is still a frigid glacial stream, labourers fill jerry cans with its holy waters to be distributed to Hindus all over India.
Buyers sparingly use the precious liquid to bless important occasions, from births, weddings, and funerals to festivals such as Diwali or the purchase of a new car.
"This is for every faithful Hindu who can't get here personally," said one of the workers in the pilgrimage town of Gangotri, giving his name as Ramesh.
"It feels blessed to be part of a project that reaffirms our Hindu faith and delivers this divine water to all corners of the country," he told AFP.
The scheme is run by the Indian postal service and is one example of a raft of initiatives, from the symbolic to the gargantuan, launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi promoting Hinduism in the country 75 years after independence.
The water is considered purest closest to its source so is collected in Gangotri, where the Ganges starts its roughly 2,500-kilometre (1,550-mile) journey across India, and trucked to a bottling plant 100 kilometres downstream.
After being left to settle for three or four days, it is filtered in tanks before workers decant it by hand into 250-millilitre plastic bottles.
Bought over the counter at post offices around India, they cost just 30 rupees ($0.37) each -- customers can also order them online for home delivery at 321 rupees for a pack of four.
Millions of the little containers have been sold since the scheme launched six years ago.
Since winning elections in 2014, Modi has put Hinduism front and centre of his government in the officially secular nation of 1.4 billion.
The core tenet of Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and its militaristic ideological parent the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, is that Hinduism is India's original religion.
This worries India's 210 million Muslims and other minorities. Social media is rife with hate speech and attacks on Muslims and Christians have risen, activists say.
Modi's biggest religious construction project is a grand temple being built in the ancient city of Ayodhya.
Hindu zealots destroyed a centuries-old mosque there three decades ago, triggering sectarian violence that killed more than 1,000 people -- most of them Muslims.
The government has also pushed a $1.5-billion highway project in the northern state of Uttarakhand, which will make it easier for Hindu pilgrims to reach Gangotri and three other Himalayan temples.
India At 75: Hindu Faith Bottled And Home-delivered
The sites already receive hundreds of thousands of devotees each year, and environmental activists are concerned about building grand highways and tunnels in the ecologically sensitive region.
Modi's government has made clear it will not let up on its vision, however, channelling money into researching the properties of cow urine -- a sacred animal in Hinduism -- and finding "proof" of legends in Hindu scriptures.
Some school textbooks have been rewritten to airbrush the role played by Muslims in Indian history, while Islamic-sounding names of cities have been changed.
These "dramatic initiatives... create an ethos of a majoritarian nation and sublimely reinforce the feeling that we now see ourselves as a de-facto Hindu country," said Hartosh Singh Bal, political editor of The Caravan, an Indian English-language magazine.
"Modi knows exactly what he's doing," he added.
"If critics now raise concerns about minorities or injustice, they can be labelled as someone who's against such schemes delivering holy Ganges water -- and shut them up."
Recipients of the precious liquid, though, have no such concerns.
New Delhi postman Rupesh Kumar, 23, has made several deliveries of the holy water, including during the current auspicious festive period.
He feels "additional responsibility" whenever he is carrying it to a customer for their ritual needs, he told AFP.
"We also used Ganges water in the family for all special and religious occasions," he said.
"People are often very thankful and polite after I deliver these bottles to their homes."
Three decades ago, the razing by a Hindu mob of a 16th-century mosque in the northern Indian city of Ayodhya, which Hindus believe is the birthplace of the god Ram, led to the death of 2,000 people and propelled the rise of Mr. Modi’s party.
A temple is now being built there. Mr. Modi, who presided over the groundbreaking in 2020, has called it “the modern symbol of our traditions.”
Faced by such moves, Ms. Roy, the novelist, voiced a common concern. “You know, the Varanasi sari, worn by Hindus, woven by Muslims, was a symbol of everything that was so interwoven and is now being ripped apart,” she said. “A threat of violence hangs over the city.”
I found Syed Mohammed Yaseen, a leader of the Varanasi Muslim community, which makes up close to a third of the city’s population of roughly 1.2 million, at his timber store. “The situation is not good,” Mr. Yaseen, 75, said. “We are dealing with 18 lawsuits relating to the old mosque. The Hindus want to demolish it indirectly by starting their own worship there.” Increasingly, he said, Muslims felt like second-class citizens.
“Every day, we are feeling all kinds of attacks, and our identity is being diminished,” he said. “India’s secular character is being dented. It still exists in our Constitution, but in practice, it is dented, and the government is silent.”
This denting has taken several forms under Mr. Modi. Shashi Tharoor, a leading member of the opposition Congress Party that ruled India for most of the time since independence, suggested to me that “institutionalized bigotry” had taken hold.
A number of lynchings and demolitions of Muslim homes, the imprisonment of Muslim and other journalists critical of Mr. Modi, and the emasculation of independent courts have fanned fears of what Mr. Raghavan, the historian, called “a truly discriminatory regime, with its risk of radicalization.”
With inequality worsening, food security worsening, energy security worsening, and climate change accelerating, more countries are asking what answers the post-1945 Western-dominated order can provide. India, it seems, believes it can be a broker, bridging East-West and North-South divisions.
At the end of my stay, I traveled down to Chennai on the southeastern coast.
The atmosphere is softer there. The economy is booming. The electronics manufacturer Foxconn is rapidly expanding production capacity for Apple devices, building a hostel for 60,000 workers on a 20-acre site near the city.
“The great mass of Indians are awakening to the fact that they don’t need the ideology of the West and that we can set our own path — and Modi deserves credit for that,” Venky Naik, a retired businessman, said.
I went to a concert where a musician played haunting songs and spoke of “renewing your auspiciousness every day.” There I ran into Mukund Padmanabhan, a former editor of The Hindu newspaper and now a professor of public practice at the newly established Krea University, north of Chennai.
“I do not believe Modi can marshal Hinduism into a monolithic nationalist force,” he said. “There are thousands of Gods, and you don’t have to believe in any of them. There is no single or unique way.”
He gestured toward the mixed crowd of Hindus and Muslims at the concert. “People don’t like to talk about the project of Gandhi and Nehru, which was to bring everyone along and go forward, but it happened, and it is part of our truth, part of the indelible Indian palimpsest.”
Is Manusmriti Back With a Bang?
Subhash Gatade |
How to walk backwards and claim we are a world leader.
In recent weeks, a debate has raged about 17th-century poet-saint Tulsidas’s epic poem Ramcharitmanas and its’ allegedly unfair and humiliating treatment of women and so-called lower castes. Voices to edit such books and scriptures or scrap them have grown louder. Yet, the Banaras Hindu University, a premier central university in Uttar Pradesh, has proposed something that, instead of settling the controversy, muddies the waters more.
The university’s Department of Dharmashastra and Mimansa, whose curriculum already includes studying the Manusmriti among ancient Indian scriptures, has proposed researching the “applicability” of Manusmriti in Indian society. It plans to use the funds received under the Centre’s Institutes of Eminence scheme, which provides research and development grants of up to Rs 1,000 crore each to ten select public-funded institutions.
The BHU’s proposal seems anachronous—and not just because it involves spending money on an esoteric subject, while public universities face a severe fund crunch forcing them to cut down even on essential expenses.
Nearly a century ago, during the first Dalit revolt of its kind in modern times, Dr BR Ambedkar, the legendary leader of the oppressed, symbolically burnt the Manusmriti in a public programme held at Mahad. On 25 December 1927, at the Mahad Satyagraha, he said in the presence of thousands of people from different parts of the Bombay province, as it was then known, that the text was a “gospel of counter-revolution”.
The resolution read out during the symbolic public “cremation” of the Manusmriti, proposed by Ambedkar’s associate Gangadhar Neelkanth Sahasrabuddhe, emphasised the intent of the organisers of the conference. After considering the verses of the Manusmriti, it said, the conference had formed the “firm opinion” that it “undermined the Shudra caste, thwarted their progress, and made their social, political and economic slavery permanent”. The resolution said the context of the text is unworthy of a religious or sacred book. That is why participants performed the “cremation” rites of the book at the conference. The resolution even described the book as “divisive” and a “destroyer of humanity”. All these facts are recorded in public intellectual Anand Teltumbde’s book, Mahad: The Making of the First Dalit Revolt, published by Navayana in 2017.
Nearly a quarter-century later, while dedicating the Constitution to the nation, Ambedkar, who headed its drafting committee, famously declared that the Constitution had “ended the rule by Manu”.
However, the Hindu Mahasabha and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) never saw eye-to-eye with a modern Constitution for India. Their leaders made their objections to modernising Indian tradition clear as their fascination for the Manusmriti. In the late sixties, Maharashtra witnessed a massive movement of Dalits and other democratic sections to protest the RSS supremo’s comments praising the Manusmriti in an interview with the Marathi newspaper, Nava Kaal.
Yet last year, Justice Pratibha Singh of the Delhi High Court spoke of the Manusmriti in glowing terms at a programme held under the auspices of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry or FICCI. She said scriptures like Manusmriti give women “a very respectable position”, a remark that created a furore, earning her much criticism for promoting regressive ideas filled with “casteism and classism”.
Politics of ruin: Why #Modi wants to demolish #India’s #mosques. The necro-economy of #Hindu nationalism relies on making history its most important site. #Muslim shrines must suffer. #Islamophobia #Hindutva #BJP https://aje.io/37g9an via @AJEnglish
A historic 16th-century mosque, Shahi Masjid, in Prayagraj city in India’s Uttar Pradesh state was demolished by bulldozers on January 9 under a road-widening project.
The demolition took place even though, according to the mosque’s imam, a local court was supposed to hear a petition seeking a stay on the city administration’s plans on January 16, a week later.
This incident should have caused public outrage, but the matter hardly made any headlines. The destruction of structures using bulldozers in India has become a banal occurrence and has already lost its shock value.
Shahi Masjid is also not the first ancient mosque to have been sacrificed for a road widening project. Last November, a 300-year-old mosque in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar district that stood in the way of a highway was razed.
Another mosque, one of the largest and oldest in India, Shamsi Jama Masjid, an 800-year-old national heritage site in Budaun, Uttar Pradesh, became a matter of dispute last year when a court case was filed on behalf of a local Hindu farmer — backed by the right-wing Hindu nationalist group Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha (ABHM) — alleging that the mosque is an “illegal structure” built on a demolished 10th-century temple of Lord Shiva. Their petition states that Hindus have rightful ownership of the land and should be able to pray there.
The claim of illegality rests on a far-right narrative according to which most of the Indian mosques were actually temples at one point in time and were forcefully converted into mosques by Muslim rulers. Even though most historians today deny these claims because there is little material evidence to support them, they have enormous popular support.
The rule of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is increasingly marked by a destructive urgency. The party’s attempts to culturally homogenise India began with the renaming of places in an overtly Hindu vocabulary and progressed to new strategies such as bulldozing Muslim monuments and archaeological excavations to find Hindu roots at Muslim religious sites.
In the past few years, there have been a number of controversies surrounding Mughal monuments. Even the Taj Mahal, a monument of global importance, has not been spared. Far-right Hindu groups claim, again without any evidence, that it was a Hindu temple.
The fate of Indian Muslims has reached a watershed moment. Scores of petitions have been filed by right-wing Hindu groups against mosques across the country.
The past several years have also seen the activation of an informal apparatus of religious volunteers who use religious processions to establish dominance over Muslim places of worship, including mosques and Muslim shrines. During several Hindu festival celebrations in 2022, including Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti, armed Hindu mobs, led at times by BJP members, entered Muslim neighbourhoods and chanted obscene slogans while planting saffron flags on mosques.
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