Posts tagged as:

Hindutva

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – October 24th, 2016

by newsdigest on November 3, 2016

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup

Communal Harmony

News Headlines

Opinions & Editorials

Book Review

Communal Harmony

Hindu-Muslim meet shows humanity is above all (Oct 17, 2016, Times of India)

Humanity is above all. That is what members of Hanuman Mandir Trust and Jamat-e-Islami Hind demonstrated at a gathering held on Mankapur temple premises on Sunday. The gathering was a clear show of harmony the two communities enjoy here.

Sitting under the shade of a peepal tree on a sunny morning, members of these two organizations set an example for others to emulate and called to forego misunderstanding and ensure communal harmony.

Ayub Khan, a professor of English at Women’s College said, “While I was passing through this temple, I took a leap of faith and entered the premises to share my idea on peace. The trust officials welcomed the idea and readily agreed to join us in our endeavour to promote peace between the two communities.”…

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/54886549.cms

[Back to Top]

Delhi’s own festival that promotes communal harmony (Oct 19, 2016, Hindustan Times)

Delhi’s oldest secular festival, Phool Waloon Ki Sair, has managed to survive the test of time. The festival which was initiated by the Mughals in 19th century, has come a long way. It came to a halt though when the country was under the British rule. It was revived by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in 1961.

This annual week-long celebration in the Capital organised by Anjuman Sair-E-Gul Faroshan, brings together communities to promote communal harmony. “What happens over the border can’t stop us from holding this festival,” says Usha Kumar, general secretary, Anjuman Sair-E-Gul Faroshan. She adds that the younger generation is oblivious to this more than a century-old tradition. But she adds, “The response has been increasing every year.”

Since its inception, the festival has been known for promoting peace and oneness among Hindus and Muslims. “Keeping the grudges aside, people from both the communities will visit the Dargah of Khwaja Bakhtiar Kaaki near Qutub Minar on October 20 to offer floral chadar and panka. The next day, they will head to the Yogmaya Temple in Mehrauli to offer a floral chatra and panka (fan),”…

http://www.hindustantimes.com/art-and-culture/delhi-s-own-festival-that-promotes-communal-harmony/story-8SggWs1eSW8c5m5rWeLvOJ.html

[Back to Top]

Godhra riots: Gujarat High Court upholds life term of 17, acquits 14 convicted in Sardarpura case (Oct 21, 2016, Scroll.in)

The Gujarat High Court on Thursday upheld the life imprisonment terms of 17 people and acquitted 14 more convicted for the 2002 Sardarpura riots case where 33 Muslims were killed, PTI reported. A division bench of the court comprising Justices Harsha Devani and Biren Vaishnav also dismissed the appeal of the Special Investigation Team and the Gujarat government against the acquittal of 31 other people by the trial court in the case.

The bench acquitted the 14 convicted in the case on the grounds of lack of evidence and contradictions in witness accounts. It cited the “two-witness test” prescribed by the Supreme Court as the basis for its acquittal. The test calls for having at least two witnesses testifying against an accused in a riots to allow the court to convict that person. The bench also upheld the trial court’s rejection of the argument that the attack was the result of a planned conspiracy after the Sabarmati Express train burning incident at Godhra on February 27, 2002.

While 11 of the 14 were given the “benefit of doubt”, three people were given a clean chit, according to The Indian Express. SIT lawyer KB Anandjiwala said the body would take a call on challenging the high court’s decision after it received a copy of the order. Meanwhile, the lawyer for the victims said that there was a possibility of them filing an appeal. “We believe there are several legal points which can be challenged,” said Yusuf Sheikh.…

http://scroll.in/latest/819590/godhra-riots-gujarat-high-court-upholds-life-term-of-17-acquits-14-convicted-in-sardarpura-case

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Jharkhand policeman charged for custodial death following youth’s post-mortem report (Oct 22, 2016, IB Times)

A murder case has been filed against a Jharkhand Police sub-inspector after the post-mortem report of a 22-year-old man said that he allegedly died due to custodial torture.

Minhaj Ansari had injury marks on his body when he was admitted to Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences in Ranchi on October 6. The post-mortem report says that he died due to “haemorrhage and shock” and that the injuries were caused with a “hard and blunt substance.”

On the basis of the report, Jamtara Deputy Commissioner of Police Ramesh Kumar Dubey said that a murder case has been filed against the sub-inspector posted with Narayanpur police station.… The sub-inspector was suspended after Minhaj’s death.

http://www.ibtimes.co.in/jharkhand-cop-charged-custodial-death-over-youths-post-mortem-report-700773

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Malegaon blast: High court asks NIA to file additional affidavit against Lt Col Purohit’s bail plea (Oct 20, 2016, Hindustan Times)

The Bombay high court (HC) on Wednesday directed the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to file an additional affidavit countering the bail plea filed by 2008 Malegaon blast accused Lieutenant Colonel Shrikant Purohit.

A bench of justice Naresh Patil and justice PD Naik have tagged Purohit’s plea with the one filed by his co-accused Sadhvi Pragya Thakur seeking similar relief.

In July, the bench had dismissed Purohit’s appeal and asked him to file a fresh bail plea before the special NIA court in light of the supplementary charge sheet filed by NIA in June, which dropped the stringent MCOCA charge against all accused in the case.…

http://www.hindustantimes.com/mumbai-news/malegaon-blast-high-court-asks-nia-to-file-additional-affidavit-against-lt-col-purohit-s-bail-plea/story-ltaztu9qIpkr3IwvKOinOM.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

MP cops accuse government of shielding unruly RSS members (Oct 20, 2016, Hindustan Times)

Millions across India may be cheering the onset of the festive season but there is gloom in the police barracks in Madhya Pradesh. Dejected cops say the morale of the force is low as the government has sided with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and punished police officers who take any action against the Hindu group members.

An example of this alleged favouritism played out around two weeks ago, when a senior RSS leader Suresh Yadav accused the police of thrashing him in custody. A medical report ruled out life-threatening injuries but the state government charged 10 policemen with attempt-to-murder, triggering widespread anger among the forces.

The case has now turned into a full-blown political war following the transfer of two senior officers for “wrongly handling the case”. The Congress says the BJP administration is acting on behalf of its ideological parent, the RSS, and demoralising the police – a charge many in the force agree with.…

http://www.hindustantimes.com/bhopal/mp-cops-accuse-government-of-shielding-unruly-rss-members/story-lh85U5nCNq4hrUJYHFKlqI.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Hindu Mahasabha member, Swami Om facing charges under Arms Act, TADA? (Oct 23, 2016, Financial Express)

It has only been a week since Bigg Boss season 10 aired on TV and Swami Om, Hindu Mahasabha contestant supported by BJP is already making headlines. Swamiji’s behaviour on the show is reflecting a character which all the other contestants are finding difficult to deal with.…

According to a report, Swami is facing charges under the Arms Act, Terrorist and Disruptive Activities in addition to non-bailable warrants in a theft case filed by his own brother, Pramod Jha who has a bicycle shop. Swami had been accused of stealing 11 bicycles, expensive spare parts and important documents. The reports also say that his sister has also filed a case against him in Delhi’s Lodhi Colony.

It seems that Swami already has a long list of accusations against him, why then is he creating more trouble in the house, stealing perfumes and asserting misogyny?…

http://www.financialexpress.com/lifestyle/showbiz/bigg-boss-10-hindu-mahasabha-member-swami-om-facing-charges-under-arms-act-tada-bjp/427396/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Ban use of ‘Hindutva’ in polls: Teesta (Oct 21, 2016, Times of India)

Social activist Teesta Setalvad has moved the Supreme Court to intervene in the ongoing debate over nexus between candidates and religious leaders and sought a ban on the use of “Hindutva” interchangeably with Hinduism in elections.

Setalvad along with retired professor and theatre activist Shamsul Islam and journalist Dilip C Mandal moved a joint intervention application before a 7-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur requesting reconsideration of a December 1995 SC judgement that had ruled that ‘Hindutva’ was a way of life and could not be equated with any religion.

The current petition would affect BJP directly as the party has held up the SC ruling in support of its claim that it is not seeking votes on religious lines and is rather advocating a cultural identity and nationalism.…

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/54968047.cms

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Polygamy more common among Hindus than Muslims: S Jaipal Reddy (Oct 20, 2016, Siasat)

Strongly opposing the Uniform Civil Code, Senior Congress leader and ex-Union Minister Mr. S Jaipal Reddy claimed that practice of polygamy is more common in Hindu religion than among Muslims. He added that Hindu women face more oppression than Muslim women.

Addressing a public meeting following presentation of Rajiv Gandhi Sadbhavana Award ex-MP said BJP is endangering peace of the country for its political gains. It is attempting to create distance between Hindus and Muslims thus damaging secular structure of the country. Mr. Reddy asserted that Congress party strongly condemns this.

He said constitution of India guarantees freedom of religion and every citizen has right to follow his own religion and propagate it. But BJP having Hindutva agenda is harassing and worrying Muslims to appease maturity community. He said Congress party is totally with Muslims on this issue and will remain same in the future. Mr. Jaipal Reddy advised BJP to first focus on oppressions on women of Hindu religion and seriously ponder over the injustices meted out to them.…

http://www.siasat.com/news/polygamy-common-among-hindus-muslims-s-jaipal-reddy-1045714/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Adivasis knock on SC door over civil code (Oct 21, 2016, Deccan Herald)

A group representing interests of tribals has approached the Supreme Court, contending that any direction to impose Uniform Civil Code would affect their distinct customs, culture, heritage and religious practices, including their right to practice polygamy and polyandry.

The Rashtriya Adivasi Ekta Parishad said the adivasis (tribals), numbered about 11 crore in the country, had their own personal laws and do not come in the category of Hindus as they worshipped nature instead of idols and performed burial of the dead.

The marriage ceremony of the tribals was also different from the Hindus, it submitted. The application by the group, which claims to be working for the upliftment of scheduled tribes for 25 years, has added a new dimension to the controversy relating to a suo motu petition “Muslim Women’s Quest for Equality” being considered by the Supreme Court where the issue of declaration of uniform civil code has arisen.…

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/576933/adivasis-knock-sc-door-over.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

JNU student claims that attempts were made to kill the missing student Najeeb Ahmed (Oct 22, 2016, Indian Express)

Attempts were made to kill JNU student Najeeb Ahmed, who has been missing from campus since a week, a fellow student who was present when he had a brawl with few ABVP supporters, has claimed. A student of School of Biotechnology, Najeeb Ahmed, went missing on last Saturday following a brawl on the campus allegedly with members of ABVP, the night before. An FIR for kidnapping and wrongfully confining a person was lodged at Vasant Kunj North police station after the police received a complaint from the student’s guardians.

“I heard some noises from the first floor. When I rushed down I saw Najeeb was bleeding from the mouth and nose. We called the warden and took Najeeb to help him wash himself in the bathroom.

“But few students came and thrashed Najeeb inside the bathroom. They were shouting that he should not be spared,” said Shahid Raza Khan, an M Phil student at JNU’s School of International Studies (SIS).…

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/jnu-student-claims-that-attempts-were-made-to-kill-the-missing-student-najeeb-ahmed-3097273/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Modi govt “increasing interfering” in freedom of association, expression, assembly: Global civil society alliance (Oct 24, 2016, Counterview)

Civicus Monitor, a global civil society alliance based in Johannesburg, South Africa, in its first-ever online tracking of 104 countries, has noted that the “civic space” in India is being “increasingly constrained because of government interference with the freedoms of association, expression, and peaceful assembly.”

Placing India under the “obstructed” category in the company of 21 other countries, including Armenia, Bhutan, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Ecuador, Indonesia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malaysia, Moldova, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, and Ukrain, Civicus regrets, “India’s many civil society organizations have until recently enjoyed an enabling operating environment.”

“Local and foreign civil society organizations describe an uneasy atmosphere under the current government of Narendra Modi”, it says, adding, “This has been caused by the government’s targeting of CSOs, including Greenpeace India, as well as statements leaked to the media indicating that civil society is receiving large sums of money to pursue foreign agendas in India.”…

http://www.counterview.net/2016/10/modi-govt-increasing-interfering-in.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Opinions and Editorials

4 cases Modi govt must look at before talking about Muslim women & triple talaq – By Aditya Menon (Oct 27, 2016, Catchnews.com)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke out on the triple talaaq issue on Monday, indicating his intention to push through a Uniform Civil Code in India. Addressing a rally in Mahoba, Uttar Pradesh, PM Modi said: said, “if someone says talaaq thrice on phone, the lives of Muslim daughters can be destroyed”.

First things first, triple talaaq is a regressive practice. It demeans women, belittles the institution of marriage and by most accounts, it isn’t even based on the Quran. Here, PM Modi is clearly trying to use the triple talaaq issue to push for a Uniform Civil Code, an issue that has time and again been used to create a communal polarisation.

But if indeed he has developed a sudden concern for Muslim women, perhaps he or his government should speak to some of these women. And we haven’t even begun talking about Ishrat Jahan.…

http://www.catchnews.com/politics-news/4-cases-modi-must-look-at-before-talking-about-muslim-women-triple-talaaq-1477321410.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Triple talaq debate: Why does the BJP raise the need for modernity only when referring to Muslims? – By Ajaz Ashraf (Oct 20, 2016, Scroll.in)

Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu’s article, A practice against modernity, published in The Indian Express on Tuesday begins thus: “‘The times they are a-changin’,’ sang Bob Dylan many years ago.” Its readers would have felt reassured because one would think that anyone listening to, and citing, Dylan would bring a touch of the avant-garde to his writing. But that hope is dashed in the next sentence itself as Naidu echoes what every other Bharatiya Janata Party leader has been articulating with tremendous zeal ever since the Supreme Court decided to determine the Constitutional validity of triple talaq.

Let us face it, Naidu wishes to debate the issue of triple talaq because it suits the BJP. He and other BJP leaders know that attempts to reform Muslim Personal Law will provoke the Muslim Personal Law Board to join the slanging match in television studios. Soon, you will see them organise street protests.

The BJP will argue that since Hindu law has been altered, Muslim law should be too and that secularism demands it. BJP leaders will clamour, as Naidu has, that Muslim women must experience the balmy breeze of changing times. The furious debate will turn triple talaq into an electoral issue before Uttar Pradesh goes to the Assembly poll early next year, thereby creating the political ambience for Hindu and Muslim consolidation.… Naidu’s modernity is politically expedient. It is a stick to goad Muslims in order to build a Hindu vote bank.

http://scroll.in/article/819451/naidu-uses-modernity-for-political-expediency-in-the-same-way-akbar-used-conservatism-30-years-ago

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

How politics is diluting the case of missing JNU student Najeeb Ahmed – By Shalini Lobo (Oct 22, 2016, Dailyo.in)

Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in the national capital has once again turned into a battleground. Outrage against anti-national sentiments and sexual assault charges has been national headlines, and now the case of a missing student has stirred this hot cauldron.

The mysterious disappearance of 27-year-old Najeeb Ahmed, an MSc student, has led to massive outrage at the varsity. “Justice for Najeeb” is what students address it as, but over all the commotion the cause is lost. The matter has taken a political and communal turn and leaders and political factions are working hard to expand their votebanks.

Left-ruled student groups allege that the scuffle that took place between Najeeb and ABVP members was a planned one. Najeeb was in the hostel for 20 days, the ABVP group assaulted him and there was also a case of mob-lynching.… And most importantly, the blame-game should stop. Votebanks should be the last priority now. Students should be united on the issue, not bully each other.… But once again, I must stress that losing and winning is restricted to elections.…

http://www.dailyo.in/politics/najeeb-ahmed-jnu-abvp-media-bjp-umar-khalid-left-jnusu/story/1/13563.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

RSS and its affiliates should not influence the education policy – Editorial (Oct 21, 2016, Hindustan Times)

Getting the education system to conform to its ideology has been a goal of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) for much of its existence. So it comes as no surprise that with the ministry of human resource development all set to formulate the new education policy, the RSS-affiliated Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas is trying to influence its content. It wants the medium of instruction from elementary to higher levels in schools to be in the mother tongue and not English, in fact it says English should not be mandatory at any level.

All research work, according to it, should be linked to national requirements and those which are not should not get UGC scholarships. And of course, there is the usual demand that references that insult Indian culture, traditions, sects, thoughts, eminent persons and offer wrong explanations should be removed from textbooks. The ministry should firmly resist this.…

The education policy must be aimed at getting children the best education that can enable them to compete in a globalising world. Our netas certainly understand the benefits of English, their children study in English medium schools and invariably attend college abroad. The education policy is too important for it to be tinkered with by those with little knowledge of the subject. The RSS should leave well alone.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/editorials/rss-and-its-affiliates-should-not-influence-the-education-policy/story-2HAq0P5wCAy5ukftHwnTZJ.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

For Better or For Worse, the BJP Is Turning to Hindutva (Again) – By Sharat Pradhan (Oct 20, 2016, The Wire)

… it is not a sheer coincidence that Hindutva finds resonance, particularly at poll time. Now that elections are round the corner in Uttar Pradesh, the saffron brigade is finding ways and means to bring it back to the fore in some form or the other.

It was, therefore, no surprise to now find references by different Bharatiya Janata Party leaders to the much-debated Ram temple in Ayodhya. The reason is not too tough to see. Having tried and tested various other ways to whip up Hindutva passions, BJP rabble-rousers have reverted to what they think may be their trump card – the Ayodhya temple.

Why they continue to see it as a trump card is not entirely clear. Anyone who has been following the temple movement would easily understand how the issue lost its vote-catching potential a long while ago.…

http://thewire.in/74617/bjp-modi-hindutva-up/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

As the State Continues to Fail Dalits in Gujarat, Another Life is Lost – By Damayantee Dhar (Oct 20, 2016, The Wire)

Sandha, a village in the Mangrol taluka of Gujarat’s Junagadh district, is home to about 35 Dalit families. For generations, the only way they have earned two square meals a day has been by working as labourers on the land of ‘upper caste’ landlords. The Dalits have no say in their wages. Usually, the landlord who owns the most land decides how much the labourers will be paid in a given year. This been the system in Sandha for years now.

Since October 13, a group of Dalits had been camping in front of the collector’s office as a mark of protest against the government, demanding that they be given the farm land that they say was allotted to them years ago. When no official from the office of the Junagadh collector came to meet them, three of the protestors attempted suicide by consuming pesticide on October 17.

While one of them, 50-year-old Prabhatbhai Munjabhai Parmar, passed away at the Rajkot civil hospital around midnight, the other two, 25-year-old Jignesh Rathod and 33-year-old Chandu Parmar, have recovered and were discharged from the hospital on October 19. According to the protestors, nobody from the government or district administration has met the family of the deceased yet.…

http://thewire.in/74529/gujarat-dalits-suicide-protest-land/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Book Review

Modi and His Challenges

Author: Rajiv Kumar
Reviewed by: Arvind Krishnaswamy
Available at: Bloomsbury India, Bloomsbury Publishing India Pvt. Ltd., DDA Complex, LSC, Building No. 4, Second Floor, Pocket C-6&7, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi 110070, India; Email: marketing-in@bloomsbury.com. http://www.amazon.in/
Review:
Modi: From Gujarat to Delhi (Oct 22, 2016, EPW)

Rajiv Kumar, a senior fellow of the Centre for Policy Research and a noted economist has embarked on the difficult task of evaluating Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s challenges, midway through his term.… Kumar then takes on the 2002 Gujarat riots and absolves Modi of being anti-Muslim by presenting a eight-point list that mentions the dropping of Gordhan Zadafia, the home minister during the 2002 riots for incompetence, the sidelining of Praveen Togadia, the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader and the convictions of Maya Kodnani and Babu Bajrangi.

This ignores the fact that all this happened only after civil society activists took the matter to the Supreme Court and some cases were transferred outside Gujarat, thereby casting aspersions on Gujarat’s ability to be judicious and neutral. A special investigative team had to be formed by the Supreme Court to help bring cases to court.…

The subsequent analysis also does not explain why after 12 years under Modi, Gujarat’s human development indices are below that of a state like Tamil Nadu which has experienced multiple changes in government accompanied by allegations of wide-ranging corruption.… In summary, this book is neither here nor there. It is neither a deeply-researched piece on the economic performance of Modi in Gujarat and Delhi, nor it is a deeply-perceptive psychological piece on what drives and influences Modi.…

http://www.epw.in/journal/2016/43/book-reviews/modi-gujarat-delhi.html

{ 0 comments }

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – July 11th, 2016

by newsdigest on July 20, 2016

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup

News Headlines

Opinions & Editorials

Thapar slams Hindutva interpretation of nationalism (Jul 10, 2016, Deccan Herald)

That nationalism has been reduced to waving flags, shouting slogans and penalising people for not chanting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ shows “lack of confidence among those making the demand for slogans”, writes Romila Thapar in her new book.

The book, titled ‘On Nationalism’, which she co-authored with legal expert A. G. Noorani and cultural critic Sadanand Menon, addresses one of the hotly debated topic of our times. The veteran scholar says in her article that nationalism has more to do with understanding one’s society and finding one’s identity as a member of that society.

While expressing displeasure with the way right-wing Hindutva forces have interpreted ‘nationalism’ in the light of recent events in Jawaharlal Nehru University and University of Hyderabad, she says that while someone who deliberately abstains from paying taxes is not declared anti-national, someone who doesn’t chant ‘Bharat mata ki jai’ is.

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/557000/thapar-slams-hindutva-interpretation-nationalism.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

MP towns shut on Eid, Hindu groups blamed for forced bandh (Jul 8, 2016, Hindustan Times)

Several towns in the communally sensitive Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh shut down on Thursday, raising allegations of Hindu right-wing organisations orchestrating the unofficial bandh during Eid celebrations.

Reports said the majority of business establishments in Neemuch, Javad and Manasa in Neemuch district and Mandsaur, Shyamgarh and Sitamau in Mandsaur district remained closed and people had a tough time even buying essential commodities on Thursday.…

Congress leader Umrao Gurjar said that people belonging to RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal were behind this and BJP was pressuring the administration to look the other way. “This is an attempt to create animosity between communities,” he said.…

http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/mp-towns-shut-on-eid-hindu-groups-blamed-for-forced-bandh/story-e2j56tShHUfszUIlRtlkNJ.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

State Intelligence Dept. gives clean chit to Naik; no arrest on his return to India (Jul 12, 2016, The Hindu)

The Maharashtra State Intelligence Department (SID) has given a clean chit to controversial preacher Zakir Naik, conceding there is simply no case to be made out against the televangelist for now. Sources in the special team of the SID handling the investigation ordered by the Maharashtra government said Naik will not and cannot be arrested on his return to India.

As part of his preliminary probe, the SID has studied hundreds of YouTube videos and speeches given by the controversial preacher in and out of India. A dossier of evidence has also been received and collected from the other intelligence teams in various states, including Hyderabad, where an ISIS module was reportedly inspired by Naik’s speeches, said a senior official.

“There is no case to be made out against the English-speaking preacher, except maybe the possible charge of hurting religious sentiments, but even that cannot be established from his speeches. We are tracking his movements and only if he speaks out of turn, can we ‘pin’ him down on a charge. For now, we are closely monitoring him,” said a senior police official, who on Monday conveyed the preliminary assessment of the SID findings to the ‘higher-ups’.…

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/state-intelligence-dept-gives-clean-chit-to-naik-no-arrest-on-his-return-to-india/article8837594.ece

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

BJP creating divisions in Kashmir with eye on UP elections: NC (Jul 11, 2016, Indian Express)

Opposition National Conference (NC) on July 11 accused the BJP of “creating division” in the society “with an eye on the 2017 Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh”.

“BJP has let down the people. Instead of solving their problems, the party is indulging in petty politics of dividing various segments of the society, not only to conceal its own failures, but with an eye on the forthcoming Uttar Pradesh elections,” said NC provincial president Devender Singh Rana.

He cautioned the saffron party against “converting the state into a hate theatre” saying the “misadventure” could have serious political and strategic ramifications.…

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/bjp-creating-divisions-in-kashmir-with-eye-on-up-elections-nc-2907712/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Home Ministry declines to reveal details of officer who probed Ishrat files (Jul 10, 2016, Indian Express)

The Home Ministry has declined to share details of file notings related to extension of service granted to senior IAS officer B K Prasad, who went into the missing files related to the alleged fake encounter killing of Ishrat Jahan, saying being an adjunct to proposal of a Cabinet panel it cannot be disclosed.…

As the file notings in this regard are an adjunct to an Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) proposal, the same is exempted under Section 8 (1) (I) of the transparency law, it said in reply to an RTI query filed by PTI.…

Prasad, a 1983 batch IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre, was due to retire in May end. He was granted extension for a period of two months with effect from June 1, 2016 to July 31, an official order had said without mentioning the reason behind it.… The officer was recently in news for allegedly “tutoring” witnesses in the missing files case, a charge denied by him. The Home Ministry had recently asked an RTI applicant to prove he is Indian before disclosing details on the extension given to Prasad.…

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/home-ministry-declines-to-reveal-details-of-officer-who-probed-ishrat-files-2904901/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Akalis burnt Quran in attempt to defame AAP: Kejriwal in Malerkotla (Jul 4, 2016, Hindustan Times)

Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener Arvind Kejriwal said here on Monday that “some forces are working to divide the country on communal lines”. Speaking at an Iftar party hosted by AAP supporters in Punjab’s only Muslim-majority town, Kejriwal also rejected allegations that his party’s MLA Naresh Yadav was involved in the sacrilege of the Quran that had led to violence here on June 24. Instead, he blamed Punjab’s ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), which is the BJP’s partner in the central government too, for it.

“Akalis have stooped so low… If they had to defame AAP, they could have done it any other way. But what was the need to burn the Quran?” he said at the gathering that saw scores of people and was held even after the police imposed section 144 of the CrPC (criminal procedure code) restricting assembly of more than 10 persons at a place.…

Kerjiwal concluded his speech telling the people to “pray that God save the country from divisive forces that are triggering communal tensions”.…

http://www.hindustantimes.com/punjab/kejriwal-at-iftar-in-malerkotla-akalis-burnt-quran-trying-to-defame-aap-forces-trying-to-divide-country/story-grHOYKU7ShUVDeZ5zAHIPI.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Pansare murder: Bombay HC refuses bail to Gaikwad, says the crime shocked society’s conscience (Jul 12, 2016, Indian Express)

Pointing out that the murder of rationalist Govind Pansare had “shocked the conscience of society”, the Bombay High Court on Monday refused to grant bail to main accused in the case Sameer Gaikwad. “Looking at the enormity of charges, this is not a fit case for granting of bail to the accused,” the court said.

Gaikwad, a member of controversial right-wing group Sanatan Sanstha, was arrested in Sangli on September 16, 2015 by the special investigation team of Maharashtra Police. Appearing for Gaikwad, Sanjeev Punalekar had argued that he should be granted bail as he cannot be kept in “continued pre-trial detention if the trial is not going to be completed in reasonable time”.…

The court also pointed to the evidence which had come to light while Gaikwad’s phone was under surveillance and he had conversed with his colleagues and the woman he loved. Pointing to one conversation with his lover, which the prosecution argued showed extra-judicial confession by him, Gaikwad had said, “Pansare is done, now should I take action against Nikhil Wagle (journalist.)?”…

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/pansare-murder-hc-refuses-bail-to-gaikwad-says-the-crime-shocked-societys-conscience-2907992/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Indian government is targeting NGOs yet again, claim non-profit workers (Jul 9, 2016, Scroll.in)

Should board members and trustees of non-profit organisations be treated as “public servants” if they are partially funded by the government? If NGOs receive foreign funding, should their office bearers be made to declare their assets to the public?

India’s non-profit sector has been grappling with these questions for more than two weeks, ever since the Union government issued a notification to bring large numbers of NGOs under the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act of 2013. The notification, issued on June 20, specifies that the Lokpal law will now apply to any registered society, trust or non-profit organisation receiving annual government grants of Rs 1 crore or more, or receiving foreign funds worth Rs 10 lakh or more.…

Excluding private companies from the same rules only compounds the belief that the state is attempting to clamp down on dissenting civil society organisations. “The state is encouraging the high participation by foreign entities in for-profit enterprises, but we see no attempt to institute similar measures with regard to non-profit organisations,” said Mander.

http://scroll.in/article/811436/indian-government-is-targetting-ngos-yet-again-claim-non-profit-workers

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Modi govt buried under carpet massive telecom scam of Rs 45,000 crore: Congress (Jul 7, 2016, Indian Express)

The Congress on Thursday accused the Modi government of burying “under the carpet a massive telecom scam of Rs 45,000 crore.”

At a press conference in the national capital, Congress leader RS Surjewala said the scam aims to help Modi Govt’s industrialists friends.

“Latest is a staggering ‘Telecom Scam’ of approximately Rs.45,000 crore plus that is being buried under the carpet by ‘Modi Sarkar’,” party’s chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala alleged at a joint press conference with party spokespersons Shaktisinh Gohil and R P N Singh.…

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/modi-govt-buried-massive-telecom-scam-of-rs-45000-crore-under-carpet-congress/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Four Dalits in Gujarat town beaten up with iron rods, dragged for a km with SUV for “possessing” cow beef (Jul 12, 2016, Counterview)

In a second incident of gruesome atrocity against Dalits in Gujarat’s Saurashtra region in a week’s time, four Dalit youths were beaten up and dragged for almost a kilometre, allegedly because they “possessed” cow beef. The incident took place in Una town of Gir Somnath district.

Belonging to Mota Samadiyara village, the Dalits, reportedly, were called to collect a dead cow. Belonging to a community of leather traders, before they could actually reach the place, where they were called, the youths were cornered by a group at the Una bus stand.

According to local sources, the Dalits were stripped half naked, tied to an SUV by chains, and beat up with iron rods in full public gaze. Though a large crowd had gathered at the place, no one seemed to forward to rescue the Dalits. A video is said to have gone viral on the social media.…

http://www.counterview.net/2016/07/four-dalits-in-gujarat-town-beaten-up.html

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Opinions and Editorials

Democracy and Political Hindutva – By MR Narayan Swamy (Jul 10, 2016, Thehansindia.com)

The challenge to Indian democracy has always come from those who hate democracy as an idea, those who preach intolerance towards the country’s religious, philosophical and cultural plurality. But the biggest challenge to Indian democracy now, says noted Malayalam writer K Satchidanandan, comes from political Hindutva.

It is a theme that runs through the book, a collection of essays by scholars, artists, activists, journalists, writers, intellectuals, a former judge and a former diplomat. The idea of the book followed the protests of 2015 when several writers, artists, scholars and scientists returned their awards or quit their posts in government institutions to oppose what they said was rising intolerance in India backed by administrative inaction.

It is this intolerance of the “other” that led to three murders that shook the literary fraternity. All three killings were blamed on the Hindu rightwing. The first victim was Narendra Dabholkar, a renowned rationalist who was shot dead by two men on a motorcycle in Pune in August 2013.…

http://www.thehansindia.com/posts/index/Sunday-Hans/2016-07-10/Democracy-and-Political-Hindutva-/240989

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Lesson from Perumal Murugan verdict: Modi could learn much from Savarkar on sex in ancient India – By Manoj Mitta (Jul 10, 2016, Scroll.in)

A Hindu tradition called Niyoga allowed a childless woman to procreate through a man other than her husband. The Madras High Court took judicial cognisance of this tradition in its verdict earlier this week, upholding the freedom of expression of writer Perumal Murugan, much to the umbrage of the Hindu groups opposed to a book depicting it.

Unwittingly, however, the verdict also put in perspective Narendra Modi’s tacit denial of this tradition in the context of its best known symbol, Kunti, the mother of the legendary Pandavas in the Mahabharata. Modi famously claimed, at a corporate hospital in Mumbai in October 2014, that Karna, whom Kunti begot before her marriage, was testimony to the advances made by ancient India in genetic science.…

Savarkar and Ambedkar could not have got away with such irreverence to tradition in today’s India, as evident from the harassment suffered by Perumal Murugan at the hands of state and non-state actors. Hence the value of the Madras High Court judgment goes beyond upholding the freedom to deal with taboo subjects. It has served to expose the corrosive link, however unintended, between Modi’s attempt to glorify Niyoga as genetic science and Murugan’s declaration of his demise as a writer three months later.

http://scroll.in/article/811464/lesson-from-perumal-murugan-verdict-modi-could-learn-much-from-savarkar-on-sex-in-ancient-india

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Taint and thwart – By Anupama Katakam (Jul 22, 2016, Frontline)

On June 16, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issued an order cancelling the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010, (FCRA) registration of the Sabrang Trust, of which the chief trustees are the activist Teesta Setalvad and her husband, Javed Anand. The order means that the Sabrang Trust will not be able to receive foreign funding anymore.…

In April 2014, just before the general election that returned Modi as the Prime Minister, the well-known columnist and Gujarat commentator Aakar Patel warned: “Like all tyrants, Modi has a fundamentally primitive view of criticism. Those who oppose him, write against what he says and does, are enemies and he must fix them before they harm him. They should watch out.”

In the same piece, he commented on Teesta Setalvad: “She is a genuine heroine who is being slowly martyred and tortured by Modi, as a disinterested nation looks elsewhere. This is the sort of third-rate pettiness Modi likes descending to because as a nation we allow him to. This constant mischief from Modi keeps Setalvad away from the work Modi is afraid of.”

http://www.frontline.in/the-nation/taint-and-thwart/article8815548.ece

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Malegaon Blast Case: Modi Government Has Much to Explain After Pragya Thakur’s Bail Order – By Ajoy Ashirwad Mahaprashasta (Jul 12, 2016, The Wire)

Soon after a special court in Mumbai rejected the bail petition of Pragya Singh Thakur in the 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case on June 28, the BJP’s spokespersons raised a storm against the order, calling it an example of ‘judicial oligarchy’. Party leaders even went so far as to criticise the court for not taking into account an earlier report by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

In May this year, the NIA had called the original Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) investigation led by the slain officer Hemant Karkare ‘dubious’, rejected all the confessions in the case and dropped all charges under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against the ten accused, including Thakur.…

While reviewing the case, the judge concluded that Thakur’prima facie connection with the motorcycle used in the blast could not be ruled out. He also concluded that the NIA and ATS reports both said that Thakur was present at the controversial meeting in Bhopal, in which the plan to bomb the Muslim-majority locality of Malegaon was allegedly hatched. These two factors became the primary basis for denying bail to Thakur.…

http://thewire.in/50838/pragya-thakur-bail-order/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

Now is not the moment – By K. Kannan (Jul 13, 2016, The Hindu)

…There are several provisions in the Constitution which are transitory, such as the number of years of provision for reservation of seats for representation in the Parliament and the Legislative Assemblies (Article 334), the time frame when Hindi will substitute English as the lingua franca for official purposes (Article 343), and the special status to Jammu and Kashmir (Article 370).…

The Uniform Civil Code, if brought in now, will be perceived as an apology for hegemony of the Hindu laws over the personal laws applicable to Muslims and Christians, and justifiably so. To B.R. Ambedkar at the time of initiating the dialogue and finalising the draft of the Constitution, it was the obvious choice, for he saw no merit in the role of religion in its application to personal laws.

The truth is that personal laws are what we confront in our personal lives from birth to death, viz. laws of marriage, maintenance, adoption, custody, guardianship of children and succession. Religion is the first affinity at birth and it is carried through at one’s will through the laws that we recognise as personal to him/her. If we withdraw the personal laws by force, we trench upon the most intimate emotion of an individual.…

http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/k-kannan-on-uniform-civil-code-now-is-not-the-moment/article8840401.ece

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

For Muslims, primarily – By Faizan Mustafa (Jul 13, 2016, Indian Express)

… The AMU is a 96-year old institution, but it was only in 2005 that the university provided for 50 per cent reservation for Muslims of India. Since 1958, when it delivered its verdict in the Kerala Education Bill case, the Supreme Court has consistently held that minority institutions are primarily for minorities and there shall be “only sprinkling of outsiders” in such institutions.

The observation was reiterated by a 11 judge bench of the apex court in the T.M.A. Pai Foundation v. State of Karnataka case: The court lifted the upper limit of 50 per cent minority reservation, which it had fixed in St. Stephens College v University of Delhi. Since minority institutions can be established by religious as well as linguistic minorities, there is no communal angle to such reservation. Moreover, religion-based reservation is prohibited only in state institutions under Article 15(1) and is permissible under Article 30(1).

Article 30 gives minorities the right to “establish and administer educational institutions of their choice” and the Supreme Court has held in the infamous S. Azeez Basha and the Union of India case that the expression “educational institutions” includes university. This repudiates the argument that minorities cannot establish universities. Similarly “governmental aid”, under Article 30(2), does not change the character of a minority institution. Thus the chorus of criticism against AMU’s 2005 reservation policy is flawed.…

http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/aligarh-muslim-university-amu-muslim-education-reservation-column-2907925/

SEE ALSO:

[Back to Top]

{ 1 comment }

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – April 4th, 2016

April 12, 2016

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup Announcements Indian Americans condemn Saudi award for Prime Minister Modi News Headlines Human Rights Watch asks European Union to tell Modi to “stop harassing” civil society, minorities, Dalits Pathankot attack ‘stage-managed’ by India, claim Pak media reports; Opposition slams Modi SIO: Cops tried to slap false charges Murder case: […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – March 21st, 2016

March 25, 2016

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup Communal Harmony Human chain to create sense of unity among citizens News Headlines Jharkhand: Two cattle traders hanged from tree, gau raksha activist among 5 held BJP leader offers Rs 1 crore to anyone who brings him ‘traitor’ Owaisi’s tongue Reference to circumcision in terror notice sparks ‘profiling’ charge […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – December 7th, 2015

December 17, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup Communal Harmony Unique display of communal harmony: Muslim group Jamaat e Islami Hind cleans Hindu temple after Chennai floods News Headlines Naroda Patiya massacre case convict’s wife accuses husband of rape, files for divorce Arrest Babri Mosque demolition accused and expedite trial: All India Muslim Personal Law Board to […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – November 9th, 2015

November 12, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup News Headlines India’s prime minister Narendra Modi suffers embarrassing setback on eve of UK visit Global media finds BJP’s debacle in Bihar a setback for Modi Former Indian PM expresses concern over rising religious intolerance in India Extremism, Intolerance Not an Expression of a Religion Called Islam, Says Ansari […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – October 12th, 2015

October 14, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup News Headlines Indian community protests against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK Indian activist Sudheendra Kulkarni hit by Shiv Sena ink attack Dadri lynching pre-medidated by Hindutva forces: DU, JNU fact-finding committee Police see right-wing plot behind Mainpuri violence RSS sympathiser loses column for saying ‘RSS leaders […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – September 14th, 2015

September 16, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup News Headlines Gujarat riots case: Sanjiv Bhatt moves SC, seeks to make Amit Shah a party to his petition Justice Continues to Elude Victims of Kandhamal Violence SC issues notice to centre for allegedly asking Salian to go soft against accused Bail pleas of Purohit, Dwivedi opposed Petlawad explosives […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – July 27th, 2015

July 28, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup News Headlines Irony of ironies: Judge afraid for her life after convicting Modi’s minister in Gujarat riots! Teesta Setalvad accuses Modi govt of ‘vendetta’ to silence her 1500 ‘encounter’ deaths under glare Will perpetrators of Babri masjid demolition be hanged too, asks Owaisi India Sees a Sharp Rise in […]

Read the full article →

IAMC Weekly News Roundup – June 15th, 2015

June 16, 2015

In this issue of IAMC News Roundup News Headlines International Yoga Day: It’s RSS, Centre’s way to propel Hindutva agenda Tripura suspends three cops for custody death UP journalist killing: Five policemen suspended Advocate Pracha threatened by Rajasthan ATS officer for defending terror accused RSS Activists Attack Christian Religious Gatherings In Kerala CCTV footage shows Ramdev’s […]

Read the full article →