Latest on Hindutva hate agenda

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

New Delhi, November 23, 2014: ‘Malicious 5’: Marxism, Macaulayism, Missionaries, Materialism and Muslim extremism are five biggest enemies of the Hindu society, claims a pamphlet distributed at the three-day World Hindu Congress 2014 that concluded here on Sunday.

The pamphlet – a single page, two-side printed document titled ‘Thought Paper’ – published purportedly by ‘Progressive Foundation’ is full of oft-repeated rhetoric in most abusive terms to describe the ‘Malicious 5’ or simply ‘M5’ – the “five fingered fist of the demon Mayasur.”

The pamphlet – TwoCircles.net has a copy of it obtained from a media personnel who covered the event – was distributed on Saturday during a session on education at the conference held between November 21-23.

This fist of the demon is introduced as “a combination of five sinister anti-Hindutva forces,” which is “weakening the very source of Dharma” and “continuously weakening Hindu society for centuries now.”

Describing that the M5 disguises themselves in various forms, it says, “Sometimes an evil finger attacks Hindu society with guerrilla warfare in the form of Maoists; at the same time other finger attacks Hindus openly in the form of Jihadists,” and further adds: “With two fingers in action another finger attacks on cultural front in the form of ‘Kiss of Love’.”

The pamphlet – it could not be immediately established whether ‘Progressive Foundation’ is yet another saffron-front organization – then goes on to describe the M5, as the Hindutva organizations perceive it:

Marxism for them thus is “the thumb of the demon’s claw,” that has given birth to “multiple bastard offspring like Communists, Socialists, Liberals, Maoists, Anarchists and all other forms Leftists.” Hindutva forces’ main grudge against Leftists is that they have “infiltrated and have taken over major Indian systems like Education, Journalism, and Environment, etc.” and that they have “ridiculed every hero, every period, every episode and every precedent in which Hindus can take pride.”

The pamphlet also holds Marxists guilty of always aligning with Muslims and supporting their cause. “The same Leftists whitewashes blood thirsty Islamic History, its despicable despots and condones their crimes,” it writes, adding, “Leftists have created heinous perception in which Muslim is always secular and Hindu is always communal.”

According to the same pamphlet, the last M of the “malicious 5” is the “poisonous fruit of Islam”. “Islam aims for Muslims to be brainwashed, blackmailed, frightened and forced into the fold of Jihadism,” it says, adding, “On the other hand it toils hard to neutralise, paralyse and blacken Hindu society so that the road for forward march of Islam is clear.”

It goes on to argue that all available platforms are being used to “defeat the emergence of Hindu nationalism … by harping on India’s multi-racial, multi-religious, multi-language, multi-national and multi-cultural character.” The pamphlet then declares that the fight with Islam will be “one of the longest in the history,” and that “Crazy ideas like Islam can be reformed are a fallacy”.

Similar words have been used in the pamphlet to describe missionaries who are making “bold bid” to make a “safer haven” for Christians in the East; Westernised Indians derided as Macaulayists, after Lord Macaulay, who introduced the Western education system in India, and Materialists, who “wickedly pit individual against its own society’s value system.”

The three days long first World Hindu Congress 2014 was organised by the World Hindu Foundation, in which over 1,500 delegates from 40 countries participated. The convention was sponsored by several leading companies.

Besides, several RSS, VHP and leaders of other Sangh organisations, many BJP leaders and ministers also spoke on the occasion. Several educationists, scientists and experts from different fields were also invited to speak during the over 45 sessions. Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader Ashok Singhal spoke on the inaugural day expressing pride over a ‘swabhimani’ (proud) Hindu coming back to the reins of power in Delhi after 800 years after Prithviraj Chauhan.

- tcn

Church marks 500 years in Myanmar. Cardinal Ossie is Papal rep.

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Myanmar, November 23, 2014: Thousands of Catholics arrived in Yangon on Friday for the start of a three-day celebration of the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Catholicism in Myanmar.

Cardinal Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Mumbai, attended the opening ceremony of the celebration at St Mary’s Cathedral in Yangon on behalf of Pope Francis, bearing with him the good tidings and love of the pontiff to the people of Myanmar.

“Today is not just a day of great joy and festivities but one of reflection on what we can do or not do, how much more we can dedicate ourselves to the Gospel, how we can transform society and how we can better serve the people of Myanmar,” Cardinal Gracias said.

In his welcome speech for the Indian cardinal, Archbishop Charles Bo of Yangon celebrated the endurance of the Myanmar Church amid difficult times.

“Poverty and persecution — even death — have met our people, but never did our people flinch from witnessing to their faith,” Archbishop Bo said.

“The faith that was cemented with tears and blood unites us today from every corner of Myanmar.”

Christianity remains a small minority in predominantly Buddhist Myanmar. Catholics number about 750,000 out of a population estimated at just over 50 million, according to a controversial census conducted this year.

The Church has grown significantly in the years since General Ne Win seized control of the country and initiated his disastrous Burmese Way to Socialism, which saw the expulsion of missionaries and the near-complete isolation of the country.

Now, Myanmar is exporting priests and Religious to other countries, Archbishop Bo told ucanews.com in an interview at his residence ahead of Friday’s festivities.

“Since the government announced its program of reform in 2011, many other [Religious] orders have shown up in Myanmar, as it’s such a fertile ground for novices. So there is a lot of competition,” Archbishop Bo said.

He added that Myanmar currently has 300 seminarians preparing for the priesthood, and that the Church has seen considerable growth, particularly in rural areas, in recent years.

“In Myanmar, typical of developing countries, you will get whole villages of 10 to 20 people joining [the Church] all at once. The headman makes a decision to join, and everyone else follows,” he said.

Archbishop Bo added that he hoped Pope Francis would schedule a visit to Myanmar some time next year as part of his focus on Asia. The pontiff visited South Korea in August for World Youth Day and will make Apostolic trips to Sri Lanka and the Philippines in January next year.

The Church’s commemoration comes at a pivotal time in the history of the country, as Myanmar’s quasi-civilian government struggles to follow through with its transition to democratic reform after decades of military rule.

The Church has a significant role to play in that transition, said Father Maurice Nyunt Wai, executive secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Myanmar.

“What we need today is to be involved in nation-building, the peace process and national reconciliation. The Church must be a voice for the voiceless, and it must stand for the people of marginalized [communities],” he told ucanews.com on Friday.

A national ceasefire with Myanmar’s armed ethnic groups have been a central part of the government’s reform process, but it has been marred by ongoing violence in many of the country’s ethnic states.

Most recently, the Myanmar military on Wednesday shelled an officer training academy in Kachin state near the Chinese border, killing 23 cadets — just days after a state visit by US President Barack Obama, during which he warned that the country’s progress toward reform was not irreversible.

Bauk Naw, a catechist from Banmaw diocese in Kachin state, said the Church has played a vital role in caring for displaced Kachin communities uprooted by intermittent fighting over the last two years in Myanmar’s northeast.

He was one of about 4,000 Kachin who traveled to Yangon to mark the Church’s 500-year-long history in Myanmar.

The three days of celebration will culminate with an event at a Yangon football stadium on Sunday, attended by Papal Nuncio Adolfo Tito Yllana of the Philippines.

- ucanews

Delhi: Summit on economic opportunities for minorities in new business environment

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

New Delhi, November 23, 2014: In a step forward from the regular discussions on political and social empowerment of Muslim community, a need for focusing on economic opportunities for the community, especially in the light of new business environment was the main theme of a seminar held here.

The theme was ‘Minorities under New Business Environment: Developing Skills and Entrepreneurship’ and the occasion was the 6th All India Minorities Business Summit & Awards held at the India Islamic Culture Centre (IICC) on Friday, November 21, under the aegis of multilingual Maeeshat Magazine.

“What are the opportunities for minorities in the new environment? What kind of involvement of the minorities should be there in these new circumstances? How minority businessmen can benefit from different government schemes? How and what should be the participation of minority businessmen? This business summit is an attempt to find out such answers,” said Danish Riyaz, editor of the Maeeshat, which calls itself the first magazine of minorities’ business and economy.

“And, we want to play a bridge between the government and the public.”

The event did not see expected turnout but the organizers were not disheartened. “If we had wanted to bring crowd, we could have easily done so, but we invited only those people, who would be interested in entrepreneurship. This event is aimed at giving a platform for engagements with such industry leaders.”

The programme had generated some controversy earlier as many saw it as being ‘sponsored’ by the ruling BJP. According to the organizers, Zafar Sareshwala, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s close aide and CMD of Parsoli Corporation, Ahmedabad was “specially invited” while Union Minister Nitin Gadkari too was likely to attend the event.

Riyaz, however, shirked such criticisms, “Our only aim is to provide a platform to let the community youth avail opportunities from different schemes and available resources.”

He further told TwoCircles.net, “This is the sixth summit that we organized and in the last five programmes, UPA government was in power and we had engaged with that government as well. Irrespective of which party is in power, the community cannot sit back, but is required to engage with the government.”

As the programme began, Riyaz announced that Sareshwala, Mufti Barkatullah, Shariah adviser, Islamic Bank of Britain, UK, and Irfan Alam, founder SAMMAAN Foundation and former Fellow Harvard University (USA), were absent for “personal and logistical reasons.”

Suhail Lokhandwala, a social and political figure from Mumbai, himself a Memon, who are involved largely in trade, drew attention to the plight of the community in his inaugural speech. Citing references and anecdotes of conservation of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), he said, the benefactor is always better than the beneficiary.

Sirajuddin Quraishi, IICC president shared his experience in the meat industry and challenges he faced. He encouraged the youngsters to try hands at entrepreneurship.

Tanveer Ahmad, former president of BJP’s Minorities Cell and Haj Committee focused on the importance of being involved in the task of governance and insisted that Muslims be part of the system. “There are so many sectors where Muslims practically have no presence, he reminded.

The aims and objectives of the Imamiah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) that represents Muslims in the co-operative sector were introduced by its MD Syed M Quaim. “We want to utilize the positive energy of Muslim community and we have gained a lot in short span of six months since our inception.”

Khalid Ali, MD of Multigain Company, spoke about the opportunities for investment in compliance with the Shariah and gave details of how his group of companies works in India according to “Islam’s Dos and Don’ts”.

Later, a panel discussion on the main theme of the programme saw participation from esteemed experts. Dr Javed Jameel, a columnist and scholar, Ishtyaque Ali, an expert with Orbit law firm, Aun Safvi of Imamiah Chamber, Waqar Anwar of Jamat-e-Islami, Mustaqeem Ahmad and Khursheed Alam comprised the distinguished panelists.

Shariqe Nisar, founder of TASIS and former fellow of Harvard University moderated the discussion. Mahbubul Haque, an eminent educationalist and founder Chancellor of University of Science and Technology, Meghalaya, chaired the session. Giving his own example, he said, “Besides educating our children we should also invest in the education industry.”

The evening also saw presentation of awards, including for ‘Best Entrepreneur’, ‘Excellence in Investment’ and‘Best Woman Entrepreneur’.

Woman Entrepreneur Award 2014: Shahina Khan, CMD, Espire Education; Entrepreneur Excellence Award 2014: Mohd. Mustaqeem Qureshi, Chairman, The Al- Nafees Group; Edupreneur Award 2014: Mr Mahbubul Hoque, Chairman, ERD Foundation and Chancellor, University of Science & Technology, Meghalaya; Best Entrepreneurs Award 2014: Dr J K Jain, chairman, Jain TV Group; Social Responsibilities Award 2014: Al Khair Co-Operative Credit Societies Ltd.; Outstanding Innovation Award 2014: Irfan Alam, Sammaan Foundation, Patna.

- tcn

No ‘Father’, Bastar Catholic schools will have Maa Saraswati

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Bastar Catholic schoolsRaipur, November 24, 2014: Under intense pressure from the VHP, the Catholic missionaries of Bastar have agreed that principals in their schools, normally referred to as “Father”, would now be addressed as “Pracharya”, or “Up-pracharya”, or “Sir”.

The missionaries have also agreed to put up photographs of “Maa Saraswati” and “great personalities who have worked for national interest” in their educational institutions.

A statement saying the missionaries agreed to the above was issued following a meeting between the VHP and the missionaries in Jagdalpur in Bastar on Sunday. It was signed jointly by Bastar district VHP president Suresh Yadav and the spokesperson of the Bastar Catholic Community, Abraham Kannampala.

The Catholics run 22 schools in the tribal district of Bastar, spread over an area bigger than Kerala.

As per the joint statement, “notice boards and assemblies of all Catholic educational institutions of Bastar” should specify that instead of “Father”, principals be addressed as Pracharya or Up-Pracharya or Sir.

The statement added, “The Catholic community expresses regret if any community, religion or society was hurt by our community.”

While the VHP has been targeting missionaries for long over issues in Bastar, and “Ghar Vapasi” programmes have been undertaken in interior villages to reconvert neo-Christians, the recent controversy began a few days ago when, during an address in Bastar, the Bishop of Jagdalpur church said a missionary school should be established with every church in the region.

The VHP immediately dispatched a letter to the Bastar Commissioner, with copies to Chief Minister Raman Singh and the Governor, saying “the address aimed to promote communalism and narrow-mindedness”. The letter also alleged instances when “Chirsitian missionaries put non-democratic pressure on Hindu society and administration on the pretext of education”.

The VHP demanded that “Father be immediately replaced by Pracharya or Guruji” and statues of “Maa Saraswati be installed”.

In Sunday’s statement, the missionaries clarified that “they have no intention” to follow the suggestion given by the Bishop.

Asserting that the statement “upholds the sentiments of Hindu students and community,” VHP leader Suresh Yadav justified the demand that principals not be called Father, saying they had been seeking it for long.

“We asked these missionaries what was the meaning of father? Father means pita. We have only one father, how can we address a teacher as father?

They said that their Bible says so, and that they consider God father. We asked them that Bible is a religious book, why do they bring it to educational institutions?” he said.

“In other English-medium schools, no one uses Father for teacher. Why only here? Addressing a teacher as father puts emotional pressure on students and their parents,” he added.

Yadav said there was no contradiction in calling Saraswati “Maa”, though. “Maa and behenji are words of respect. We address older women as mataji, younger women as behenji. Matayen aur behanen, we say before any address. But we never address an old man as pita.”

The spokesperson for the Bastar Catholic Community said they didn’t intend to hurt anyone. “We never pressure anyone to say Father. We also agreed to installing statues of Saraswati and noted personalities. We already have their photographs in our schools.”

About the Bishop’s address, Kannampala said he had given the example of Kerala where churches used to have educational institutes when that state had poor education. “There was no intention to hurt anyone’s feelings,” he said.

- indian express

Karnataka: Calvary Apostolic Church vandalized, 8 injured

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Church vandalizedKarnataka, November 23, 2014: Rajendran, a mobster lead a violent mob today morning at about 10.30 and attacked Christian believers of Calvary Apostolic church and vandalized the church property in Gangammapalaya,within Bangararapet police station limits. During the attack by inebriated vandals attacks, eight believers of the congregation sustained serious injuries.

The perpetrators were threatening against the reconstruction of the church building. Two believers, Krupakar and Wilson are admitted in Jalappa, medical college hospital, Kolar with broken limbs.

Pastor D’Souza was subsequently taken to the Bangarapet police station. Mr.Sivakumar is the Inspector and jurisdictional Superintendent of police is Mr. Bagvan Dass.During the presstime Pastor is being questioned in the police station.

The small congregation members were thrown out of the church by the mobster and his group.

- gcic

Women Religious against Human Trafficking

November 25, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

AMRATSecundrabed, November 23, 2014: The 6th Annual meet of AMRAT was held on 7th to 10th nov, 2014 at catholic health association of india (chai), Secundrabad- Andhra Pradesh.

The participants  were 75 from India, Pakistan, Nepal  and Sri Lanka  to belonging 24 congregation. Sr. Sahaya FMM, the president of AMRAT welcomed the participants and the dignitaries. In her message she reiterated that though we belong to different congregations but coming and uniting for the common cause is marvelous. She said” our very vocation is a call for commitment to work in solidarity for the fullness of life to all, specially the vulnerable and trafficked victims (women and Children).

Sr.Jyothi, Bs, the former president and the foundress of AMRAT led the participants in prayer for the victims of Human Trafficking. AMRAT is a member of Talitha Kum (Little Girl, get up), an international network of consecrated life Against Human Trafficking, an initiative of UISG (International Union of Superiors General). Started in 2009, it has 50 women religious congregations from South Asia.

Sr. Rita Mascarenhas FMA gave the glimpse of Amrat through a short video Presentation. Currently there are 50  member congregation under the umbrella of AMRAT. Sr. Jyothi said that we as a strong hold of Religious need to work collectively in empowering these victims who are less advantage in the society. The members of AMRAT constantly felt that there is a conscious awakening in South Asian Countries to the situation of Sexual exploitation of Women and Children for commercial purposes.

Therefore this four days meet was an occasion to sharpen the understanding of the current plight with specific focus on Inter-state and Inter – countries trafficking, the Laws and Legislations on Anti – Trafficking in order to launch concrete programmes, strengthen each ones capabilities and combat the problem by networking at National and International level.

Mr. David Raj, the State Programme coordinator of UNICEF. highlighted on the legal matters on Human Trafficking. He basically focused on the “Rescue and Rehabilitation” of the Child victim.  Through his input session helped the participants to be well updated with current information and knowledge about the laws and legislations as well as the case studies strength their capabilities in handling the cases of the victims, to be effective in networking and collaborating at National and International level.

Mr. Rama Mohan from NATSAP, HELP organization focused on the trafficking in Women and Children, the pre and post rescue work. His main contribution to the participants was on the dimensions, challenges and existing response on Human Trafficking and the role of the NGOs.

Mr. S. Umapathi, IPS (Rt. Inspector General of Police) in  his session. He stressed on the importance of compulsory education of children. He also confirms that this vulnerability takes place due to lack of Education. He also highlighted on the UN Convention which was held on 13th May, 2009.He spoke with convictions and said that everyone has an opportunity to create a positive change and encouraged the sisters to work for change.

Sunitha Krishna, the foundress of “PRAJWAL” foundation. In her talk on staying Alive brought out the UN definition on Human Trafficking, the Act, Mean and Means and purpose of Trafficking and the extent and magnitude of Human Trafficking in India.

Krishnan, who has been working among slum dwellers of the city that now functions as the capital of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana states since 1995, said the trafficked are used for adoption, organ trade, labor, circus, beggary, domestic work, camel jockey and prostitution.

The victim of a gang-rape at the age of 15, Krishnan gave a call to equip oneself to fight these crimes with right skills and strategies. “Break our silence, break our structures, break our culture of tolerance

Sr Jessy Kurian, a lawyer of the Indian Supreme Court explained the legal provisions to combat trafficking and spoke of the implications on legalizing prostitution. “If the prostitution is legalized, trafficking would increase and it would be difficult to fight for the victims, as the traffickers may take legal protection,” As a collective action AMRAT.  The AMRAT sister’s lawyers have drafted the memorandum regarding of non legalization of Prostitution in India and have been signed by all the participants and was sent to the Prime Minister of India, The President, The National Commission for Women, Ministry of Law, Ministry of Women and Children of India.

AMRAT members have  75  successful  case stories of the victims will be documented Sr. Rita Mascarenhas Amrat Secretary said.  The members commit themselves to do the research in collaboration with other NGOs so as to work radically and bring an impact in the lives of the victims.

- Sr. Rita J. Mascarenhas FMA  (Secretary – AMRAT)

Three Muslim youth innocent, discharged by court in 2006 Guj railway station blast

November 20, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Blast at the Ahmedabad railway stationMumbai, November 19, 2014: In yet another setback to Gujarat’s Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS), three Muslim youths have been discharged by a local court in Ahmadabad in an 8-year-old case pertaining to a bomb blast at the Kalupur railway station in the Gujarat capital.

The Metropolitan court on Monday discharged Afroz Pathan, Bilal Ahmed and Mustufa Saiyed in a case of February 19, 2006 blast at the Ahmedabad railway station in which at least 10 persons injured. Earlier in 2013, two other Muslim youth were similarly acquitted in separate blast related cases as the ATS could not provide evidence against them.

The latest acquittal came after Gujarat ATS filed a charge sheet in the case against Amir Shakil, Aqif Bayabani, Aslam Kashmiri and Zabiuddin Ansari under section 121 A, 120 (B) , 307 & 124 A of IPC and Sec 13 & 18 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). While submitting the charge sheet, the ATS filed an application u/s 169 of Criminal Code pleading discharge for other three accused as the agency could not collect any prosecutable evidences against trio.

The metropolitan court accepted the plea and discharged the three accused from the case.

Pathan, Ahmed and Saiyed were not arrested immediately after the blast but on June 12 this year from Mumbai prison, where they were already facing another trial for the 2006 Aurangabad arms haul. Gujarat ATS arrested them as their names had cropped up during the questioning of other accused, including Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jindal, who is also accused in the 26/11 case.

Defence lawyers’ reactions

AdvU D Pathan, lawyer of the accused, told TwoCircles.net, “We have been trying to convince the court ever since the arrest (of the trio) that ATS does not have any evidence to implicate them and that they are arresting these youth only on the basis of alleged statements of other accused recorded by it.”

“This order will help my clients in their Mumbai case also as their discharge (in this case) indicates that they have been falsely implicated in the case. I would get the certified copy of the discharge order and will soon send to the accused, who are imprisoned at Mumbai,” he said.

Boosted with the discharge order, Adv Nadeem Ansari, Maharashtra Jamiat lawyer in Mumbai, told Twocircles.net, “The accused were not aware of the order as they were not produced in Ahmedaad court. We will soon tender the certified copy of the discharge order before MCOC special court and (we believe) it will help prove their innocence in this (Aurangabad) case too.”

Two acquittals in the past

On December 12, 2013, Additional Sessions Judge B S Upadhyay had acquitted Mohammad Iliyas Abdul Memon, a resident of Paldi in Ahmedabad, and Kamlesh Bhagora, a constable with Government Railway Police, for lack of evidence against them.

Memon was accused of being in contact with Aslam Kashmiri to provide logistic support but during the trial, the ATS could neither recover a cell phone from Memon’s possession nor obtain Call Data Records (CDRs) regarding his conversation with Kashmiri.

ATS had arrested Bhagora for “concealment with criminal design” who, the agency claimed, was informed about an unattended suitcase after the train terminated at Ahmedabad but instead of informing the authorities concerned he quietly kept it hidden behind crates of cold drinks. The bomb blast occurred sometime later. During the trial, he too was acquitted for lack of evidence and the judge had admonished the police for poor investigation.

- tcn

Modi has over 25 mn followers on facebook

November 20, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Modi and Mark ZuckerbergNew Delhi, November 19, 2014: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has crossed 25 million followers on Facebook and continues to remain the second-most followed politician in the world after US President Barack Obama, the social networking website said.

With over 25 million users who have ‘liked’ Modi’s official account, the Indian prime minister is slowly catching up with Obama, who has over 43 million followers.

In April, Modi had over 12 million fans. It swelled to over 18 million by July and 21 million in September.

Facebook has over 100 million active users in India.

Meanwhile, some of the most popular pictures posted by Modi include that of the INS Vikramaditya, which got 822,613 likes followed by the Independence Day post which garnered 772,055 likes.

A photograph of Modi meeting Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg received 619,359 likes.

A recent picture of Modi meeting Obama and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott at the G20 summit got 447,212 likes.

- ians

The Nanavati Commission: Another hoax

November 20, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

Burning of the Godhra trainAhmedabad, November 20, 2014:  Finally, yesterday, exactly 12 years it was constituted by the Gujarat Government on March 6, 2002 to probe the burning of the Godhra train and the subsequent carnage which broke out in several parts of Gujarat, the Commission headed by G.T Nanavati (a former judge of the Supreme Court of India) submitted its report to the current Chief Minister of Gujarat, Anandiben Patel.

It was originally known as the K.G. Shah Commission but it was later reconstituted to include Justice Nanavati, after several civil rights groups and individuals protested over the closeness that Justice Shah had with Narendra Modi. Justice Shah died in 2008; and Justice Akshay H. Mehta (who granted bail to Babu Bajrangi in the Naroda Patiya case) was appointed on April 5, 2008 to be a member of this Commission.

The content of this more than 2000-page report has not yet been made public but if one goes by the grapevine and what seems to be “leaked out” to sections of the media, then one can very easily conclude the following: that those really responsible for the law and order in the State have been given a ‘clean chit’; that the burning of S-6 Coach of the Sabarmati Express on 27th February, 2002, just outside the Godhra railway station was a ‘meticulously planned act of conspiracy’ (this was already said in the Commission’s interim report in 2008); and finally the only people who seemed to be ‘responsible’ for not preventing or controlling the violence are some lower rung policemen and some apparently anti-social elements.

The Commission which has claimed to have looked into 4,160 cases of violence in Gujarat between February 27th and May 31st 2002 also states that it has gone through 46,000 affidavits submitted by over 4,000 victims of the violence that paralysed Gujarat and continues to be one of the darkest and bloodiest chapters of independent India. It was given 24 extensions (of almost six months each) before it submitted its report. Till July 2012, the Commission ran up an expenditure bill of more than five crores with an additional miscellaneous expense of Rs.1.62 crores. It has been past two and a half years since; so the final cost of this Commission (including the disguised expenditure) will surely run to a mind-boggling amount and all at the cost of the State exchequer (a Gujarati newspaper today puts a conservative cost of nine crores.

Several concerned citizens like the late Mukul Sinha of Jan Sangharsh Manch, Sanjiv Bhatt and others have tried their level best to bring the Commission – any thinking citizen will know – on track and ensure that truth prevails and that the victim-survivors are given justice. The Commission, has been full of inconsistencies, lapses and loopholes.

Sinha who cross-examined several witnesses, has consistently demanded that Modi who was the Chief Minister of Gujarat at that time, had to be interrogated too. Why the Commission took the pains to deny this request from Sinha and several others does not leave much room for doubt!

Even though the Commission has submitted its report, many for the victim-survivors (and several others who have accompanied them) are the Gujarat Carnage of 2002 is not a closed chapter. The relentless pursuit for truth and justice will continue until those who presided over this carnage are brought to book. Only then, will they truly be able to sing our motto emblazoned on our national emblem “satyameva jayate” (truth alone triumphs!)

- cedric prakash

BJP: Islam will prosper if we rule Kashmir

November 20, 2014 by admin  
Filed under newsletter-india

BJP in kashmirSrinagar, November 19, 2014: The BJP said Wednesday it was confident Islam will prosper in Jammu and Kashmir if it got to rule the state.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) also said that it won’t press for the abrogation of article 370 of the constitution, which gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir, if people of the state want it to stay.

BJP state vice president Ramesh Arora, who is also in charge of the party’s Kashmir affairs, said Kashmiris would feel more secure if the BJP was voted to power in the country’s only Muslim-majority state.

“Kashmiris need to vote en masse for the BJP. This contention is wrong that the BJP is a communal party. Kashmir is a land of Sufi saints. Islam will grow better during our regime,” he said.

“The state as such has no religion but we (BJP) respect all religions and pledge religious freedom to all as guaranteed in the Indian constitution.

“Those who say the BJP would be a threat to Kashmiriyat … are wrong.

“The actual threat is to those who say so. Our party will end administrative, police, bureaucratic and political injustice in Jammu and Kashmir.”

Trying to play down the controversy over article 370, Arora said the BJP favoured a debate and discussion on the issue.

“We will take people into confidence and assess its merits and demerits to the state and proceed accordingly.”

Arora said a debate over this provision was a “serious issue and we (BJP) won’t take any vague decision.

“We will take the aspirations of all regions of Jammu and Kashmir into account while dealing with this issue.”

The BJP has traditionally opposed article 370, saying it was coming in the way of Jammu and Kashmir’s complete integration with the rest of India.

The BJP manifesto for the 2014 Lok Sabha election reiterated its stand on the article and said it “will discuss this with all stakeholders and remains committed to (its) abrogation”.

- ians

Next Page »