November 18, 2019

You needlessly damage your global image and then do not use the obvious solution in plain sight.

The Aatish Taseer affair once again highlights how little grasp the Narendra Modi government has of, one, global image management and, two, effectively countering accusations hurled at it that may be easy to disprove.

Taseer, whose Overseas Citizen of India, or OCI, status was revoked recently, is a British citizen by birth, grew up in India, and currently resides in New York. The government stated that the reason for the revocation was that Taseer attempted to “conceal information that his father was of Pakistani origin”. But across the world, the timing was seen as suspicious. In May, Taseer had written a Time magazine cover…

November 18, 2019

Zakia Soman, the founder of Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (an organisation of Muslim women in India), has been the wheel behind the mass movement demanding the law to criminalise the draconian practice of Triple Talaq.Soman, the epitome of pluralistic faith, remained untouched of hatred peddled in the aftermath of 2002 Gujarat violence while her activism brought together thousands of women to stand against religious prejudices, finally resulting into The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019.
In an exclusive interview with Countercurrents, she spoke to Ujjawal Krishnam.
Faultline today seems to be the degree of religious orientation which has diluted conscience. This is now allowing propagation of misogyny in the garb of religion…
The fact of patriarchy and woman subjugation…

November 13, 2019

The corporate-Hindutva alliance, which underlies the BJP government, is centralizing

The BJP government promotes centralization because both its pillars of support, namely Hindutva and corporate capital, are in favour of it. (The Telegraph file picture)

Anti-colonial nationalism had sought to be inclusive. This was necessary for uniting a diverse people to fight an imperial power whose relative strength derived precisely from this diversity. Uniting people of such diversity in turn required discussions and negotiations, between the proponents of the anti-colonial, pan-Indian nationalism, and others belonging to different social groups, and regional-linguistic…

November 13, 2019

Ayodhya Verdict unravels a new sensibility and a distinctly different social reality, in several diverse ways. One aspect to be mentioned here is the extraordinary rush of appeals for peace in the country. With large battalions of police force deployed throughout the nation, the government and mass media and the social media sent out appeals again and again. The verdict was pronounced and of course, peace prevailed. But the sense of dread has grown phenomenally. The silences are scary especially when the prime minister himself responds to the verdict, when he had remained silent on numerous occasions of national importance.

Read more:

https://countercurrents.org/2019/11/death-of-secular-and-democratic-india

November 13, 2019

The Indian Supreme Court’s decision to allow the building of a temple for Rama on a disputed site is likely to intensify the Hindu nationalist efforts to turn India into a majoritarian nation.

By Hartosh Singh Bal
Mr. Bal is the political editor of The Caravan magazine in New Delhi.

Read more:

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/11/opinion/india-ayodhya-temple-ruling.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage

November 13, 2019

The Nov. 9 verdict of the Supreme Court that granted Hindus permission to build a Ram temple at the centuries-old Ayodhya holy site, ending one of the country’s most politically-charged land disputes, has evoked a mixed reaction from Indian-Americans.
The Hindu-American community and those supporting Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his ruling Bharatiya Janata Party have hailed the Supreme Court for delivering “a just and fair judgment,” and providing a “closure” and “victory” to both the Hindu and the Muslim communities. On the other hand, are the minorities, the liberals and the progressives, who call the verdict “flawed” and a “failure for democracy.”
According to the unanimous court judgment by a five judge bench comprising of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice…

October 19, 2019

The Congress needs to take the “Gandhian approach” of public service and get 5,000 workers in every district dedicated to the cause of helping people to get its mojo back, technocrat-turned-politician Sam Pitroda said on Wednesday.
He said all Congress leaders must spend six months studying the father of the nation on his 150th birth anniversary to be ideologically equipped.
Pitroda, a long-time adviser of the Gandhi family and head of the Indian Overseas Congress, said the country is facing a “major conflict” for the idea of India.

Read more:

https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/sam-pitroda-says-congress-needs-gandhian-approach-to-get-mojo-back-1605615-2019-10-02

October 19, 2019

Prominent organizations and intellectuals laud Rutgers for supporting Audrey Truschke

Joint letter defends Truschke from vicious assault following comments about Hindutva’s roots in Nazism

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 09, 2019

The Alliance for Justice And Accountability (AJA), an umbrella coalition of progressive organizations across the United States, today announced the release of a letter signed by prominent organizations and intellectuals lauding Rutgers for defending Dr. Audrey Truschke in the face of a vicious campaign against her by organizations and individuals aligned with the Hindutva supremacist ideology. Signatories to the letter include prominent rights organizations such as Amnesty International (Houston), Advocates for Human Rights (Minnesota), Council for American Islamic Relations (Dallas-Fort Worth), as well as academicians like Dr. Martha Nussbaum and Dr. Yasmin Saikia….

October 19, 2019

Which side are you, Mr. Rajnath Singh, Union Home Minister of Democratic-Secular India?

Shamsul Islam

Rajnath Singh ji,

While talking to The India Express (New Delhi, August 24, 1914(?)) you described yourself as “Swayamsewak of RSS”. As a Home Minister of the country you must have taken oath to uphold the Indian Constitution which is based on the principles of democracy, secularism, federalism, socialism and justice. However, there is going to be a serious conflict of interests between above mentioned fundamental principles of the Indian polity and your membership of RSS. As a member of RSS you must be well aware that RSS hates and denigrates all above mentioned fundamental principles of democratic-secular India. I am quoting below directly from RSS documents…

October 18, 2019

Home minister Amit Shah and a CRPF constable expressed ideas sharply antithetical to human rights principles from the NHRC’s platform, yet were commended by the commission for doing so.

Within a matter of days, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of India found itself on the wrong foot twice. In the first instance, a ‘hate speech’ video of a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) constable delivered last month during a debate competition organised by the NHRC went viral, causing consternation. In the second, inviting Amit Shah, once an accused in fake encounter cases, as chief guest for the commission’s foundation day celebrations, has raised eyebrows.
On September 27, Khushboo Chauhan, a constable of the CRPF, delivered an emotive speech which was…