Saturday, September 23, 2017

Growing radicalization in Indian society: Shocking level of hate towards Rohingyas, other victims of violence

Indian govt doesn't want Rohingya refugees, that's the official stand.

It is government view, fine.

You don't like Rohingyas, it's your personal view, fine.

But if you hate them, call them 'criminals', enjoy demonising them, keep posting sick views, unable to suppress your feelings of hate towards humans in distress, shows the level of dehumanizing.

Lot of my 'friends' doing it, they even include women who seem to like (sic) pictures of suffering, fleeing men and women, children.

They are not moved by the images, stories of horror, in fact, there is an element of glee. If human sufferings--of women, kids don't move you, it shows  level of radicalization in sections of society, which was known to be TOLERANT.

Even during Syrian refugee crisis, there was to an extent this attitude that was visible on internet. But after Rohingya exodus, it manifests itself more clearly.

All very normal people, friends, Hindi journalists, who demonize the victims, can't conceal glee, when women-children suffer.

This hate overcomes everything and dehumanizes. It is a dangerous signal for Hinduism and Hindu society. A society that was once known for certain values, degrading. There are levels of sickness.

It's a symptom. Now we know what many people around us, 'friends', believe in--their real dark feelings--once they perhaps felt shy about expressing publicly. But now they can.

No leaders--social, political, spiritual or any reformer-statesmen in real sense. With minnows (as far as leaders are concerned) and bigots around, little hope for society.

When you are on the brink of getting de-humanised, it is really serious and strangely you don't realise what it can do to your society. Treat if you realise it. 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Halima Yacob becomes first women president of Singapore: Malay Muslim woman, daughter of Indian man at the helm

The daughter of an Indian father and a Malay mother, has become the President of Singapore.

Halimah Yacob, who is a a Malay Muslim minority and was the parliament speaker till recently, had quit the position last month.

On Thursday, she took over as the republic’s first woman president and the second Malay ever in the island republic to hold office as head of state.

 Her father was an Indian Muslim. He was a watchman. She was just eight when her father died. Halimah, 63, was born in Singapore. Her mother was a Malay.

A lawyer, Halimah practiced in the Singapore bar. Her husband Abdullah Alhabshee is a Malay. They have five children. Halimah was associated with People's Action Party.

There has been opposition to Halimah's election from certain quarters and it was termed that this was not a voter's election. Also, her race and her father's Indian link, was made an issue.

The last Malay president was Yusof Ishak. He held the office from 1965 till 1970, when he died. Though a ceremonial post, it has immense significance attached to it.

The premier, Singapore PM Lee Hsien Loong, said that in the Chinese-majority, multiracial city state of 5.6 million people, it was “important that minorities have a chance to be elected president, and that this happens regularly”.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Six golden examples of Sikh-Muslim brotherhood: Centuries of common culture, close relations and coexistence

Just like Hindus-Sikhs or Hindus-Muslims, who have lived together for centuries and have shared heritage, Muslims and Sikhs too have a shared history.

There are glorious examples of love, togetherness and sacrifice for the other.

In Punjab, all the three religious communities lived together and hence there was bound to be common culture.

Unfortunately, many people tend to create an impression that Sikhs and Muslims had a sort of fight, hate or enmity, but this is completely wrong.

A king or emperor's unjust acts or oppression, just because he happened to be a Muslim, doesn't mean that those acts were sanctioned by Islam. Similarly, a Sikh guru's fight against the oppressor doesn't mean that it was a fight against Islam, it was a fight against injustice, a fight for values.

A Muslim emperor was an emperor, a despot, not a role model for Muslims. In fact, on the ground, Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs, lived in amity for ages. However, there is propaganda that terms communities having enmity.

Just a few examples:

1. The closest companion of Guru Nanak was Bhai Mardana, a Muslim.

2. Miyan Mir, a Muslim saint, had laid down the foundation of Shri Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple)

3. The works of Muslims like Baba Farid and Sheikh  Bhika, apart from Kabir, are part of Guru Granth Sahib, the holy text of Sikhs.

4. Once, Sikh Guru Hargobind Sahib found that local Muslims in an area had no place to pray, he got a mosque built for them. It still exists.

5. Many Muslims were part of the army of Guru Gobind Singh, when he was fighting Aurangzeb. Badruddin Shah alias Pir Buddhu was executed for supporting Guru Gobind Singh.

6.When there was order to kill the Guru's sons, the Nawab of Malerkotla opposed it and protested. As a result, Sikh guru blessed him. During partition, entire Punjab was in bloodshed but not a drop of blood fell on Malerkotla's land.

[Harmony exists all around us but is often ignored. Instead, stories of hate, discord and communalism get spread easily.

There are a million examples in our daily lives across India but they don't get promoted, hence, news of hate and discord gets heard more. Let's change it, now.

This is a small attempt to change it through Communal Harmony Project]

For reading similar reports on this blog, Click the link HERE and also find out more about Communal Harmony Project]

#Communalharmony #Communalharmonyproject #India

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Will AAP, Arvind Kejriwal pay attention towards the plight of Urdu medium schools in Delhi?

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had come to power, promising that it will work for the common man, all sections of society.

In its manifesto, the party had said that it would address issues of Muslim community too and would earnestly work to redress the grievances.

On educational front, AAP government has lately been quite active and seems to have done its bit--from construction of school buildings to reining in private schools that charge excessive fee.

But when it comes to the Urdu medium schools, AAP hasn't shown much interest. The Urdu medium schools are crumbling, grapple with lack of teachers, non-availability of the most basic facilities.

Besides, there are fears about attempts to merge Urdu schools--just another way to bring their number down, before closing them.

If AAP is serious about education, then it should pay equal attention to Urdu schools in Delhi, which is not a huge state. Things can be sorted out faster in national capital.

Firstly, there is need to improve infrastructure--construction and repair of the dilapidated school buildings, upgrading the existing schools and opening new ones.

The demands include appointment of Urdu teachers, ensuring that the posts are filled (not kept vacant or surrendered) and premises are freed from encroachments.

In many schools, teachers who are not proficient in Urdu, are posted. Besides, there are no steps to ensure that Urdu is taught as third language in English and Hindi medium schools where students opt for the language but lack of teacher or management's disinterest has led to the situation that Urdu is not taught even as third language.

AAP had made promises to Urdu speakers. Its manifesto was in Urdu too. Hope the party takes action and shows sensitivity, else, it would be felt that AAP also played the 'Urdu card' at election time.

A delegation of All India Milli Council too called on Arvind Kejrwal a few days back, urging him to take steps in this regard.

 Urdu is an official language in Delhi government, however, the Urdu schools aren't given any priority. Link about delegation visit on TCN.

Dr Parvez Miyan led the delegation, which included Zaki Ahmad Beg, Hasina Hashim, Qari Asjad Qasmi, Sardar Darshan Singh, Mahmood  Husain, Victor Francis, M Imran, Devendra Bharti and S Ashraf Rizvi.

*Delhi government plan to merge Urdu schools

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Terror in Haryana: 38 killed in statewide violence after Dera chief's conviction in rape case

38 people were killed after Dera Sacha Sauda chief was held guilty of rape and sexual exploitation.

*Entire Haryana was on the boil, hundreds were injured. 38 persons killed in the violence.

*People killed, bodies lying on the streets, vehicles burnt in Panchkula, violence in many towns.

*Violence on the streets in Haryana, parts of Punjab, Delhi and UP.

*Army had to be called out, policemen were attacked at several places.

*High Court chided Centre as well as State government for failure.

*Other than Panchkula, violence in Hisar, Sirsa, many other towns in Haryana too.

*Railway stations burnt, train compartments, buses, set afire. Arson in Delhi also.

*Arson, attacks in Punjab too.

*AK 47 assault rifle, revolvers, rifles seized from Gurmeet Singh's vehicles.

*Cases registered against 30,000 persons

*Hotels, buildings, petrol pumps, burnt. In Delhi, at least ten DTC buses burnt.

Also, two bogeys of Rewa Express at Anand Vihar Terminus burnt.

*Violence in Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh too.

If this is not terror, then what else is?

Dera Sacha Sauda is a cult led by self-styled spiritual guru or Godman Gurmeet Singh Ram Raheem.

The Dera chief has been accused of murders too. The journalist who wrote against Dera, was killed.

There have been allegations that Sadhvis were sexually exploited in Ashram. Also, men in the inner circle were made impotent.

The Dera chief lived a lavish life, dressed as Pop artiste, made movies and acted as hero. Political parties went to him to get his support as dera has a strong following.

It is a shame that despite such accusations, he remained influential and enjoyed excellent rapport with top politicians of the country.

PM, CM and senior BJP, Congress leaders either met him and had photographs with him or congratulated him for his 'social work'.

Of late, he had been close to BJP but this failed to get him any reprieve. He has been convicted and given 20 year sentence. After he was held guilty, entire Haryana was on boil.

[Photo courtesy: Jaipal Singh, Indian Express]

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Muslims serving Hindu devotees during annual Kanwar Yatra: Communal harmony project-37

The Kanwar Yatra is an annual event in North India.

Thousands of youths take the holy water to long distances and offer it on the deity--Lord Shiva.

The photograph on the left shows a Muslim man providing first-aid to a Hindu devotee, termed Kanwaria [Kanwariya]--youth taking the Kanwar.

The other photograph shows Muslim men offering sherbet to the devotees passing by the town. 

These photographs need to be published here because mainstream media doesn't provide space to them and ignores such examples of communal harmony.

During Muslim processions, Hindus offer sherbet at many places. And in case of Hindu processions, Muslim youths too offer their services. This is Indian culture.

Unfortunately, we live in an era when even such gestures, that are common in towns, need to be photographed and shared. 

It is because in big cities, where people have little time to interact and live in suburbs or gated communities, don't have any idea about this common culture and shared heritage.

Many just live on Twitter and Facebook [WhatsApp] now, not on streets or mohallas of the mixed townships in cities, qasbahs and villages. For them, it's a different world. Though it is the real India.

[Harmony exists all around us but is often ignored. Instead, stories of hate, discord and communalism get spread easily.

There are a million examples in our daily lives across India but they don't get promoted, hence, news of hate and discord gets heard more. Let's change it, now.

This is a small attempt to change it through Communal Harmony Project]

For reading similar reports on this blog, Click the link HERE and also find out more about Communal Harmony Project]

#Communalharmony #Communalharmonyproject #India

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

How Kashmiris take care of injured Hindus during Amarnath pilgrimage: Communal harmony project-36

This photograph speaks volumes about Kashmiri Muslims.

It shows local Muslim youths holding the glucose bottles in their hands, to provide immediate relief to Hindus injured in the Amarnath  Yatra mishap.

When the Hindu pilgrims were injured after the bus fell in the gorge, Kashmiri Muslims were first to reach the spot to treat the injured and provide first-aid.

"We are alive just because of the Kashmiri Muslim brothers", repeated pilgrims when cameramen reached the spot.

In fact, the victims seemed surprise that the Kashmiris cared for them, so much. This is because of TV-WhatsAPP-social media propaganda.

Nearly 17 pilgrims died while around 30 were injured when a bus skidded off the Jammu-Srinagar highway on July 16.

Local Kashmiris rushed to the spot, did their best to save the injured and got medication.

Certain TV channels may consistently target them and defame them, but it is these Kashmiris who are role models. The self-styled 'nationalist journalists' must realise they spew venom against Kashmiris but can't help anyone on the ground.

It is the local Muslims who ensure that Hindu pilgrims complete the Yatra, safely. Whenever there is trouble, it is the Kashmiri Muslims who show their humanity and come first. You may get irked by terms like 'Kashmiriyat' but the truth is that this is real humanity.

When Junaid is killed in a train in Haryana, Akhlaq lynched in his house in UP, Pahlu Khan murdered in Rajasthan and Muslims being lynched by 'gau rakshaks', Indian Muslims and Kashmiri Muslims show the way.

Our society--predominantly, most Hindus and Muslims are peace loving. But TV channels and propaganda on WhatsApp has turned a section into lumpen hate-mongers. Sadly, even such incidents did not get enough space on TV and in newspapers.

[Harmony exists all around us but is often ignored. Instead, stories of hate, discord and communalism get spread easily.

There are a million examples in our daily lives across India but they don't get promoted, hence, news of hate and discord gets heard more. Let's change it, now.

This is a small attempt to change it through Communal Harmony Project]

For reading similar reports on this blog, Click the link HERE and also find out more about Communal Harmony Project]

#Communalharmony #Communalharmonyproject #India

Why media is surprised over Lashkar's terrorist Sandeep Sharma?

When the police busted a terror module, they claimed arresting Sandeep Sharma, a Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorist.

The news was played up as, 'Lashkar's Hindu terrorist arrested', as if it was something rare.

In fact, soon after his name appeared, there were speculations and also immediate follow-up stories that how he fell in love with a girl and took to militancy.

There was a sense of bewilderment. It is true that we haven't heard about many Hindu names in Jammu & Kashmir's militancy. But thousands of Hindus have been involved with terrorist and extremist groups in India.

ULFA, which is also banned terror outfit, just like Lashkar, has had thousands of militants in its cadre over the last three decades or so.

The group [ULFA] has been solely responsible for the highest number of deaths due to insurgency-militancy in India. There are dozens of such groups in North East.

The Maoist terrorism also has nearly 90% Hindu cadre. They have been responsible for terror attacks, have killed ex-ministers, politicians like former Union minister VC Shukla, attacked and blown up buildings and installations for decades.

The right-wing terror groups have been involved in dozen-odd attacks ranging from Malegaon to Mecca Masjid attack. Names like Ramchandra Kalsangra, Sandeep Dange, Amit alias Ashish, who have been wanted for over 100 killings in Samjhauta Express and other bombings are still, absconding.

Then, from LTTE to Abhinav Bharat and anatan Sanstha, there have been extremist and terror groups with huge Hindu membership. Remember, former RSS' members were not just arrested but convicted and jailed for attack on Ajmer Dargah.

As far as Sandeep Sharma is concerned, he is basically from Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh. He was a welder who took to crime and later became a face of Lashkar-e-Toiba. He was close to Bashir Ahmad Wani.


*LeT has a Hindu face, his name is Sandeep Sharma LINK

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Modern Indian history: Cow vigilantes' terrorism, lynching Muslims over beef rumours, merciless killings

For any Indian, it is one of the saddest period.

Right-wing extremism has reached a stage where cow vigilantes' atrocities and incidents of lynching have become a regular affair.

Muslims are being targeted, killed by mobs. A teenaged Muslim gets killed in train because mob assumed that because he is a Muslim, he would be consuming beef.

This happened near Delhi. In other parts of India, the law-and-order has deteriorated exactly in the same fashion. Any Muslim can be killed or lynched over a rumour.

A man carrying cow to his home for milk is killed just because he is a Muslim. Another carrying meat is killed because it is believed that the meat would be nothing but beef.

No police complaint, seizure or lab test is required.

This is 21st century India, where Muslims can be killed at will.

When an armyman's father can be killed by a mob after announcement from a temple that his fridge had beef, one could perhaps have an idea about the situation.

Muslims never thought that they who gave their blood for India's freedom, would one day have to go through it.

In UP, Bihar, Jharkhand, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, everywhere Muslims are being attacked over rumours or suspicion of carrying beef.

Till a couple of years, it would have been unbelievable that lawlessness would take over the country, so fast.

That the state would not be able to control the right-wing lumpens and that the vigilantes would rule the streets.

But this has happened within a few years, a very short time.

The fact is that the right-wing Hindutva extremism had been rearing its head in India since 1980s.

The rise of militant organisations like Bajrang Dal, which openly give arms' training to its cadre, should have woken up the state.

But the authorities remained lenient towards them, even during Congress regimes.

Social media revolution has given it a fillip and took it to next level. After Facebook, it was WhatsApp that was increasingly used to spread propaganda and hate in Indian society.

The result is cow vigilante groups who seem to have the licence to attack or kill anybody. No one knows when the State would act against them. Accuse anyone of smuggling a cow or consuming beef, and then kill the person--it has become so simple.

That's 21st century India.

One hates to post such pictures. But there is no other option. One has to post them. After all, this is happening in India each and every day. We must accept that we are one of the most inherently violent societies.

Unless we accept it, we can't make efforts to change it. We must rise, stand for humanity, fight the fascist forces, take on the extremists and save this nation. If we don't do it right now, it may be too late. 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Stop Lynching Muslims in India: Eid celebrated, Muslims wear Black Bands to protest killings

In an unprecedented show of solidarity with people who have been lynched across the country, Muslims across India wore a black band on their arms, on the day of Eid Ul Fitr.

It was a protest that that had no Muslim leaders or clerics behind it. The call was given by ordinary Muslims who have seen India turning into Lynch Land.

While celebrating Eid, Indian Muslims remembered how innocent Muslims have been lynched by self-styled cow vigilantes, right-wing extremist groups and radicalised mob over the period of last few months.

We remembered Junaid, the young Hafiz-e-Quran who was lynched in a train near Ballabhgarh.
We also remembered Pahlu Khan, who was killed by a mob in Rajasthan. 
We remembered Ghulam Muhammad who was lynched in Bulandshahar, too
We remembered Md Salman, Mazloom Ansari and all other innocents lynched.
We remember how Najeeb remains untraceable and his mother fights for justice.
We remembered Pappu who was killed after returning from Taravih prayers
We remembered Abu Hanifah, Riazuddin, Md Nayeem, Sajjad, Alim, Md Siraj...
We remembered Minhaj Ansari, Imtiaz...
We remembered Md Akhlaq, Zahir Ahmad...
We remembered Noman...

And all others who were killed by vigilantes or those who false accused victims of consuming beef or carrying bovines or for similar reasons.

In the last few months, the lynching incidents have occurred all over North India.

We see right-wing extremists have taken over administration and killers are let off easily.

While praying in the Idgahs and mosques, Muslims prayed for the safety of Indians, prosperity for the entire country and also prayed to God to save Muslims from the lynch mob.

On Facebook and Twitter, the photographs were uploaded to tell the government to wake up and rein in the killers.

The hashtags like #BlackbandagainstLynchRaj and #StopKillingMuslims began trending from Sunday evening.

Even in foreign countries--USA and Gulf, NRIs wore black bands as mark of solidarity. Let's vow to uphold democratic values, fight against fascism and make efforts to save our country.

Save India. Save Humanity.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Will Rajasthan showcase lynching incidents, extremists' arms training camps, extremists' acts to attract Tourists?

Rajasthan is considered among the most tourist friendly states in the country.

But lately, incidents of lynchings, mob attacks, vigilantism and right-wing group's terror camp is keeping it in the news.

Law-and-order seems to have collapsed in this state. An elderly man, Pahlu Khan, was lynched in Rajasthan.

But Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje didn't speak a word, despite wide criticism. Mob attacks and vigilantism are becoming increasingly common in the State.

People with saffron bands can attack a hotel, believing that it served beef (though lab tests later confirmed it was chicken) and thrash a woman, forcing her to say 'Jai Shree Ram'.

Then, Bajrang Dal activists openly impart arms' training to youngsters. A middle-aged man who tries to stop people from taking photographs of women who were going for defecation, gets lynched. The authorities aren't interested in taking action.

Is this how Rajasthan will showcase itself? The reputation of Rajasthan is getting sullied. The state is now getting known for crumbling law-and-order and reign of right-wing lumpens who seem to have become law unto themselves.

They may not be worried about innocents getting murdered and vigilantes taking over from police and administration. But do Union government and Rajasthan authorities realise the danger of such negative publicity?

Rajasthan seems to be giving competition to Jharkhand and UP in such incidents. In fact, it is faring worse.

*Woman brutally thrashed, made to say 'Jai Shree Ram'. [June 15] LINK

*Muslim man lynched in Rajasthan. [June 16] LINK

*Arms training camp in Hanumangarh in Rajasthan. LINK

*Pahlu Khan lynched in Rajasthan. LINK

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Hypocrisy over cow slaughter in India: Muslims don't consume beef but are unfairly blamed, constantly targeted

The Congress workers said that they slaughtered the cow to protest the beef ban.

In Kerala and many other states, beef is consumed by the Hindu populace.

Though in North Indian states, it is illegal and there are strict laws against cow slaughter.

BJP-RSS stand on beef keeps changing, depending on party's poll prospects in a state. It changes from region to region, leader to leader. There is no clarity.

They speak in a different voice in North India and a different voice in South, North East, Eastern India and states like Goa. Principally, BJP is against beef consumption as it feels it is against nation's thous though the most indigenous tribal have been beef eaters.

On one hand, BJP's Hindu leaders have repeatedly said that they have no problem with beef, its Muslim face Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had said that the beef eaters should be sent to Pakistan.

1. Apart from the incident, beef fests were organised in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. They were all Hindus who were performing cow slaughter and eating beef. LINK

2. Muslims avoid beef because the Hindu majority considers cow as a holy animal. Mostly, it is the Hindu populace in different parts of the country--South, East, North Eastern States and Tribal regions, that consume beef.

3. In Goa, where BJP has been the ruling party, beef is not banned. In North Eastern states,  BJP has openly said that it is not against beef. In Kerala, its leaders have offered 'quality beef' in case they are elected.

4. Union minister Kiran Rijiju had said that he consumed beef and no one can force their dietary preferences on him.

5. Even, RSS leaders who went to North East, said that a person who consumes beef could join the Sangh.

6. Former defence minister Manohar Parrikar had said that government can't take position on issues like consumption of beef. "Beef consumption is a matter of personal opinion", he had said. LINK

7. BJP leader quit party over beef ban. Three days after saying the would reduce beef prices in Meghalaya if he were elected, Bernard N Marak quit BJP, stating that the party was trying to impose its ideology on people. He had said that in Meghalaya, most BJP leaders eat beef. LINK and LINK

Later, another BJP leader Bachu Marak resigned from party against the cattle trade legislation. He said that beef was staple food in Meghalaya. 5,000 members of BJP also quit the party, unhappy with BJP move. LINK

8. BJP leader in Karnataka, Vaman Acharya, who is party spokesman, said Brahmins used to slaughter cows and ate beef, in the past. Later, he retracted the statement, saying he wanted to close the issue. Clearly, he seemed to avoid controversy or under pressure now. LINK

9. Tarun Vijay says that eating habits of North Indians can not be imposed across the country. In an article in Panchjanya, he wrote that cow vigilantes should read likes of Vivekananda and VD Savarkar to understand that habits of people in N Indian can't be imposed across country. LINK

Still, right-wing groups use the issue of 'beef' to target Muslims. Muslims do eat buffalo meat, which is wrongly termed 'beef' in English media. Unfortunately, Muslims are nowhere in picture, they respect laws and even the sentiments of the Hindus, yet, they remain on target.

When it comes to cow vigilantism, the Muslims are targeted. Laws are applied in such a manner that a person is booked even if he is not carrying beef--as the sample would be tested later. Even an armyman's father, Akhlaq, was murdered over a 'suspicion that there was beef in the fridge of his house'.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Six lynched in Jharkhand: Photo that should haunt us, Indians, inhabitants of the land of 'non-violence'

Will this photograph haunt us, Indians, for long?

A man--Mohammad Naeem, begging for his life, yet, the mob killed him in cold blood.

The man was not alone. Apart from him, Md Sajjad alias Sajju, Siraj and Md Alim. were also killed.

The incident occurred at Shobhapur near Rajnagar, which is 45 km from Jamshedpur. All the victims were cattle-traders.

Apparently, there was a rumour that children were being abducted from the area though police said that there no such complaint, and no incident of child theft was reported.

"Villagers got information that some people are taking kid in car. They came out armed and surrounded Shobhapur. It was alleged that one Muslim man, Murtaza Ansari, was protecting them. Mob accused him of saving them and Murtaza asked the mob to check the vehicle. But the mob didn't buge", reports Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar.

The mob went on rampage, rummaging houses and setting afire property. Victims were baten to death. Naeem succumbed to injuries on way to hospital. The houses of Shamsul Haq and Azizul Haq were burnt. Police officers's vehicles including Tata Sumo and Indigo were also burnt.


Apart from the incident, three more persons were lynched in Jharkhand. Gangesh Gupta, Vikas Verma and Gautam Verma were killed in cold blood. This incident occurred in Nagadih.

The elderly grandmother of one of the victims, Ramsakhi, was also brutally beaten. Her condition is reported to be critical. BJP is in power in Jharkhand, and there is no statement from the top party leaders, condemning the killings.

UPDATE: Reports suggest that the figure of deaths is SEVEN (7). LINK

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Another day, Another attack: Muslim man lynched, Hindu farmers brutally beaten by cow vigilantes

Lynchings, mob attacks, vigilantism--that seems to have become the order of the day in India.

A Muslim man was beaten to death in his house in Bulandshahr in Uttar Pradesh, just because he was supportive of an inter-religious marriage.

The Hindu Yuva Vahini members barged into his house, abducted middle-aged Ghulam Muhammad, took him away and thrashed him until he died.

The Hindu Yuva Vahini is an extremist Hindu group, which was formed by Yogi Adityanath, who is now UP's chief minister.

Locals said that members of the Vahini were behind the attack and murder. There are barely a couple of Muslim families in this village in Bulandshahar. Now, after the incident, they plan to move out.

From Pahlu Khan to Akhlaq, from Mazloom Ansari to Najeeb Ahmad, the stories of Muslim men disappearing--either killed, lynched or taken away, never to return, it is becoming a regular affair now.

As private armies or right-wing Hindu militias keep growing in size, the incidents are increasing. Along with Muslims, a few Hindus here and there too bear the brunt of these attacks. In North India, the situation is worst.

The other incident took place close to national capital Delhi. It happened in Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh. Two Hindu farmers were brutally beaten.

Their fault--they were carrying cows along with them. Bhoop Singh and Jabar Singh were intercepted by self-styled 'Gau Rakshaks'--a term that means protectors of cows.

"We kept telling them that we are Hindus, farmers but they kept accusing us of being cow smugglers and started thrashing us", said the victims, who later lodged an FIR.

"They abused us verbally and kicked us on the stomach and even the face. We collapsed on the ground but they continued beating us". While this was happening, no one intervened. [TOI report]

Hindu Sena leader crushes Muslim youth to death in Bhopal

In yet another incident of extremist groups' violence, Hindu Sena district chief killed a Muslim youth, Salman, by crushing him to death under a SUV. This incident occurred in MP Nagar in Bhopal.

Salman was beaten brutally and later his head was struck against a tanker. The Hindu Sena leader Shivaji Patil later crushed Salman to death on the spot, with his car, and escaped. He was later arrested.

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Cow Vigilantes' Terror: Two more Muslims killed in India, mob lynches them in Assam

Two more Muslims have died--victims of Cow Terror.

Abu Hanifa and Riyazuddin were lynched by a mob in Assam.

Clearly, terror in the name of cow continues in India.

This is the worst form of Terrorism in the world, where people kill in the name of cow. They feel that they can kill anyone and have moral right to decide whether someone is guilty or not.

Akhlaq was killed because it was imagined that the meat in his fridge was not of goat but cow. Similarly, the mob decided that Abu Hanifa and Riyazuddin were cow thieves.

So they got the 'authority' to kill them in cold blood. Both of them were beaten to death. The incident occurred in Nagaon district. The Kachamari Pathar village is just 130 km from State capital.

Soon after the incident, in which two people were murdered, the cops had started claiming that 'it was not a case of cow vigilantism'. How? Why such hurry to give a clean-chit, instead of focusing on crime of such magnitude.

Even before probe, it was termed that they were 'cow thieves'. So where is the need for police or law-enforcing agencies?The self-styled 'Gau Rakshaks' are on a spree of attacks, violence and killings across India.

The prime target are Muslims, and in some cases Dalits too. Occasionally, non-Muslims have also been beaten or tortured. Like in Una in Gujarat, where Dalits who skin dead animal, were tortured by right-wing extremists.

1. In Bihar, a man honked at a cow and he was attacked, resulting in damage to his eyesight. LINK

2. In Delhi, a woman tried to shoo away a cow and she later nearly escaped the violent mob. LINK
Ganesh Mandal or Sharmila's case are exceptions.

3. Jabar Singh and Bhoop Singh brutally beaten by cow vigilantes in Noida. LINK

OLD INCIDENT 2015: Gulli alias Phool CHaran kills two friendsGulla Soma and Ganesh Bhilala in Damoh as he suspected they were involved in transportation of cows. LINK

4. Tribal** accused of cow slaughter, dies in police custody.

5. Appu Malviya was brutally beaten by vigilantes in Ujjain. He was thrashed, kicked, beaten with belts publicly. LINK & LINK

6. Sheikh Bismillah, 27, and his uncle Sheikh Siddique, 65, had gone to sell buffalo meat when they were attacked, brutally beaten in Washim in Maharashtra. The assailants accused them of selling beef. "It was buffalo meat. They just won't listen", victims said. The incident occurred in Washim in Maharashtra. Shockingly, after they were assaulted, they two persons were booked under section 295 (A) of IPC. The police said that they seized meat and sent samples for test to the lab. The attackers were seen shouting slogans and forcing the duo to chant 'Jai Shri Ram', slapping, punching and kicking them repeatedly, and ordering them to come to the police station with them. Later, police booked seven persons for the assault. LINK & LINK

**Elderly Kodar Gamar was arrested under the newly enacted cow protection law for allegedly slaughtering bovines, reported HT. Gamar, in his 60s, was arrested and was in the custody of Sabarkantha police. He died. A judicial probe has been ordered.

7. Muslims are the main target. In national capital, Delhi, just over a week ago, Muslim cattle transporters--Rizwan, Ashu and Kamil, were brutally beaten. This happened in Kalkaji. LINK and LINK.

They hailed from Pataudi, Haryana. They were stopped, pulled out of vehicle, beaten up. The police had to save them. The attackers claimed to be 'animal rights activists' and representing People for Animals (PFA).

8. Self-styled 'gau rakshaks' beat up people for buffalo slaughter, a man thrashed even as he is escorted by police. The incident occurred in Aligarh. See video

9. Five members of a family including a nine-year-old girl injured in attack by cow vigilantes in Jammu & Kashmir in April. The girl suffered multiple fractures. The family was moving with their livestock. "One of our children, a 10-year-old, is still missing. We don't know whether he is alive or dead. They even beat our elders very badly. They wanted to kill us and throw our bodies into the river". LINK

10. Shivam, a BA student, stabbed after cow vigilantes thought he was a journalist [photographer] and was not taking the photograph of their protest. LINK

11. Yet another cow vigilante attack in Jharkhand. Ainul Ansar attacked, cops later save him. He insists that it was meat, not beef. This incident occurred in Darbhanga (Jharkhand) on June 7. LINK

12. 100 cow vigilantes had surrounded Hayat Rabbani hotel in Jaipur, wanted owner to be handed to them, alleging that it sold beef. The incident had occurred on March 19.  Now, forensic lab report reveals that it was not beef. LINK

Over the last three years, there have been numerous cases of attacks and killings. The most recent case was that of Pahlu Khan, who was killed in Rajasthan. However, the State government, did not take the crime seriously and even one of its ministers tried to play it down, ending up blaming victim.

13. Officials of Tamil Nadu's Animal Husbandry Department had bought cows and calves from Jaisalmer for a Central government's breeding programme when they were attacked near Rajasthan's Barmer. The cow vigilantes also attempted to set fire to one of the trucks which had the animals inside, the police said. The cows would have been burnt alive had they not been rescued by the police. LINK

14. [June 20] Cow vigilantes strip, tie to tree and beat up three people mercilessly in Etah in Uttar Pradesh. They alleged that these were cow smugglers. A cop seen in video but couldn't do anything. LINK

15. [June 24]. Junaid, 16, stabbed to death in train, when he was returning after Eid shopping from Delhi to Ballabhgarh in Haryana. Called Pakistani and termed beef eater because of their dress and skullcap, assailants attack Junaid, a Hafiz-e-Quran, and his brothers in train. LINK & LINK

16. [June 25] Three Muslim men lynched in Dinajpur in West Bengal over suspicion that they were involved in cow theft. LINK

17. Muslim men--Abu Hanifah and Riyazuddin lynched in Assam, reports Al Jazeera. READ
So far, just a case has been registered and two persons detained, says this PTI report. LINK

18. NOT BEEF. [June 27] Otera Bibi, 42, a mentally challenged woman, lynched in West Bengal. LINK

19. [June 28] Mob attacks house of Usman Ansari in Jharkhand, burns the house, clashes with police, he gets injured, survives. LINK

20. [June 29] Alimuddin alias Asghar Ali lynched in Ramgarh in Jharkhand. Mob accused him of taking beef in a van. LINKLINK

21. NOT BEEF. [June 30]. Two more lynched in Bihar over suspicion of theft, beaten to death. The victims, two Dalits--Baban Musahar and Murahu killed in Rohtas district. LINK & LINK

22. [July 9] Eight killed, all of them Hindus. They were going to rescue their kin who had been caught and kept hostage by 'Gau Rakshaks'.

In Jhajhar in Haryana, Xylo had a collision with a trailer truck. Eight died--Randhir, Ramu, Raju Ram, Raju son of Bhima, Jagdish, Birbal, Bhagirath and Sukhendra. They were going to get their relatives released who had been caught by Gau rakshaks. Victims belonged to Mehrana in Charkhi Dadri. LINK

23. [June 9]  Victims belonged to Mehrana in Charkhi Dadri. LINK

24. July 14: Muslim man beaten in Nagpur over false charge that he was carrying beef. Kept insisting that it was mutton, not beef [later a lab test suggested it was beef]. The victim Salim Ismail Shah is general secretary of BJP's Katol taluka minority cell. LINK

25. July 14: Muslim family attacked on train in Uttar Pradesh. Mob brutally attacked entire family including women and a disabled son too, with rods and sticks. Saying, 'kill them, they are Muslims'. LINK

26. Shailesh and his mother Maniben mercilessly beaten in Anand in Gujarat. Over 100 persons attacked their house for allegedly skinning dead cow. LINK & LINK & LINK

27. Elderly Lal Din beaten by cow vigilantes for moving with cattle in Rajauri in Jammu-Kashmir on August 27. LINK [see Photo].

28. Two Muslim boys--Hafizul Sheikh, 19, and Anwar Husain, 19, killed by cow vigilantes in West Bengal. Lynched on suspicion of being cow thieves on August 27. LINK

READ: From minor boy Imatiaz's murder in Jharkhand to Pehlu Khan's killing in Rajasthan


Mohsin Sheikh, killed in Pune, because he had a beard (June, 2014)
Noman killed in Sirmaur in Himachal Pradesh by cow terrorists.
Zahir Ahmad killed in Udhampur on rumours
Syed Farid Khan lynched in Dimapur, Nagaland on March 5, 2015
Akhlaq was killed in his house in Dadri in UP.
Md Mazloom Ansari and Imtiaz, lynched and hanged by tree on March 18, 206  
Md Ayub Pandit lynched by a mob in Kashmir
Md Saddam and Farooq, students, lynched in Imphal in Manipur on April 7, 2016.    
Ajju Husain, a resident of Chittorgarh, cattle trader, paraded naked and lynched    
Md Ayyub, a resident of Gujarat, taking his catle lynched in Gujarat on September 2016
Md Salik, Salman in Bhopal

OLD 2016 list on this blog HERE

Attacks Against Muslims, Lynching, Hate Crimes [Other than cow-beef killings]

*[May 29]: Muslim youths returning from Taravih, shot at in Gonda, UP. One of them, Pappu, 23, killed.

*[June 24] 70-year-old Muslim cleric shot dead inside a mosque by unidentified persons who had also thrown meat [pork] in the mosque in Mau. LINKLINKLINK

*[June 25] Md Salman, 19, shot by cops after dragging him from his house in Jharkhand. He had just returned after buying new clothes, itr and belt for Id. LINK & LINK

*July 1. Journalist M Atharuddin saved himself, his 91-yr-old father, 85-yr-old mother, wife and kids from Bajrang Dal terrorists by chanting 'Jai Shree Ram'. They threatened, say it, else we will burn the car. LINK

*July 2: Police fire at Muslims, kill Yaqub Ali. The victim is among those protesting action against 'doubtful voters.  He was shot dead. LINK

*September 21: Middle-aged Nabi Ahmad lynched, Azmat critical in Farrukhabad, UP. Nabi Ahmads's son says his father's beard led to his identification as Muslim and the attack. LINK

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Make use of summer holidays, teach children Urdu or another language

This post is for parents and elders, reminding them that summer holidays are the best time in the year to teach kids, a language.

Especially, the mother tongue. You can teach an extra language and I am writing for Urdu, because in many Indian states, children don't have the option to learn Urdu in schools.

The third language in schools is generally not Urdu. Hence, they are unable to learn it properly. It is time to sit with kids and teach them Urdu.

In Muslim households, Urdu words are known, grammar is known and it is spoken. What is needed is just to read the script and write. So for that, just a small effort is needed.

Barely 20-30 min a day, it doesn't take more. As most kids are familiar with the script too because they learn the Holy Quran [Arabic], it is even more easy. But it needs a bit of discipline and patience. 

You have to do it each and every day. Within a couple of months, the kid would definitely pick up enough. I had written a similar post on this blog five years ago. Check the link below

READ: Teach kids an additional language or their mother tongue in vacations

Subscribe to children's magazines. Kids like them, make them read. You can start with a Urdu primer also. There are many Urdu magazines in India. NCPUL's Bacchon Ki Dunia, Hilal, Noor, Umang and Payam-e-Talim have good circulation.


1. Bachchon ki Dunia, Delhi
2. Umang, Delhi
3. Noor, Rampur
4. Hilal
5. Naya Khilauna, Kolkata
6. Ghubbara
7. Butul [focuses on girls, more]
8. Payam-e-Talim
9. Gul Bootay
10. Sada-e-Atfal
11. Achha Saathi
12. Fankar
13. Guldasta-e-Talim

Thursday, April 27, 2017

How communal propaganda for years laid foundation for India's march towards Fascism: Reasons for right-wing's success, hysteria that has gripped citizens

Companies are firing employees, no job creation, businessmen are worried, forget the poor.

You are getting hurt by the bleeding economy or lack of development, but you aren't perturbed.

No promise is fulfilled--either on developmental front or ten heads for each Indian soldier's head, yet, vote will go to them only. No surprise.

This is the stage of fascism, it leads to hysteria. If leader(s) says that there is too much population and solution is to commit suicide, they will say, 'Yes', he is right, some may even accept it.

The niddle-class that has money, house, shops, so can survive, face inflation longer. How can they accept that they were wrong, after all, they have believed in him with so much intensity that it will shatter them.

Media will not let this hysteria level go down. After all, the propagandists made efforts for half-a-century to get their men enter, influence and own media, while others had no inkling. As far as Congress is concerned, it is responsible chiefly for this crisis.

For decades, so much lies were spread in this country that a divide between Hindus and Muslims was created. So many half-truths were spoken, propaganda of others was allowed that for most Hindus, Kashmiri or Muslim became an enemy.

They kept talking of article 370 but would never tell that anyone could go to Kashmir but there are states like Nagaland where any Indian requires a permit to even step into the state. And it is not just Kashmir.

READ: How misinformation, falsehoods and propaganda about Kashmir have hurt India

It is on each and every issue. Common Civil Code, Haj Subsidy, Talaq, just think and there are innumerable issues. Congress was the major party and was expected to tackle but it was never interested, in fact, complicit.

...long long story...sins of decades....

And, where is the space in obsessed brain to even think--every cell in your brain is occupied. From Aurangzeb to worries over Zaheer Khan's marriage, the sound of Azaan to Cow, everyday there is so much to think of.

They can form illegal armies that will kill people for no crime, in the name of cow vigilantism or anything else. Yet, they will remain paranoid, scared, worried about growing population of the Muslims.

For right-wing Indians, there is nothing left, except worrying about Islam and Muslims. So all this is not going to end soon, it will take time. Let's wait and hope that some day this fever will come down. 

Terror strikes India: 300 armed Maoist terrorists attack, kill 25 security personnel in Chhattisgarh

In the biggest terrorist attack in India this year, armed Maoist militants killed 25 security personnel in Chhattisgarh on April 24, 2017.

The heavily armed ultra-leftists ambushed the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel in Sukma district in the southern part of this central Indian state.

The security personnel were like sitting ducks for the Maoists. Police said that the CRPF party had stopped for lunch, when they were ambushed.

This is the second major attack in Sukma district of Bastar region within 1-1/2 months. Around 90 CRPF men had left Burkapal camp near Dornapal, for patrolling and security of the road laying work when they were attacked.

While 25 jawans were killed in the firing, many others were injured. Some Naxalites were probably killed and injured in the cross-firing. The injured jawans said that they were outnumbered by the Maoists.

Sher Muhammad, the CRPF personnel, injured in the attack, said that he shot over half-a-dozen Maoist militants. The security establishment in the entire country was alerted after the dardevil attack.


*12 security personnel killed by Maoists in Bhejji on March 11, 2017
*30 jawans killed in Jhiram attack on May 25, 2013
*76 security personnel killed in Tadmetla massacre on April 16, 2010
*36 securitymen killed in Dantewada on May 17, 2010
*27 jawans killed in Narayanpur on June 29, 2010
*55 personnel killed in Bijapur attack on March 15, 2007

Monday, April 24, 2017

Legendary Urdu writer MA Rahat passes away in Pakistan: There won't be another MA Rahat in Urdu now

Legendary Urdu writer MA Rahat is no more. He breathed his last in a hospital in Pakistan.
He was a gifted author.

I have read classics in English, Urdu and many other languages, do enjoy Intizar Husain as well as Naiyer Masood's writings, but at the same time I must say it that MA Rahat was in a league of his own.

In India, we marvelled at his brain--how could someone write like him. My late phuphi used to say, 'MA Rahat aur Mohiuddin Nawab ke dimaghon ko sarkar ko mahfooz kar lena chahiye, unke inteqal ke baad, taki un par research ho sake...'

When he wrote Kala Jadoo, almost all the major digests published it in India. Kotha is another masterpiece. Once you start reading, it is simply unputdownable like most of his works.

The list is endless. Living in Pakistan, he recreated the North Indian society of yore--early 19th century, its culture, to perfection. Just because he wrote in popular digests, he was not given his due.

When Kala Jadu was published, it created a sensation across the sub-continent. It was published in monthly Urdu digests and readers waited for the next installment. However, the writer probably got no royalty.

The stories were simply copied and published in India. In the post Ibn-e-Safi era, it was his writings that made people rush to bookstalls every month to buy Urdu digests.

With him ends an era. I don't think, there would ever be an author like him. Someone who would write so brilliantly, weave a world beyond anything you have ever heard or seen, and yet be so prolific.

MA Rahat was a product of his time--a writer born in a language, a culture that had reached its epitome and though it was destroyed by partition, he grew up in the era when Urdu literature was at its peak. That era has gone.

I don't think there will be an MA Rahat, in future. First Mohiuddin Nawab and now him, two giants have passed away. Feel Pakistan and Urdu world should have given the due to these authors in their lifetime. Rest in Peace, MA Rahat sahab. 

Friday, April 07, 2017

Media Manipulation: India is a non-vegetarian country but false perception about vegetarian majority created

India is a country where over 70% people are non-vegetarians.

This newspaper in its lead story mentions, 'contrary to popular perception, majority of Indians are non-vegetarians'.

How innocent! It goes on to 'inform' us that 71% Indians are non-vegetarians.

So how this perception was created? This paper should have answered it.

The micro-minuscule communities, mostly of a cetrain caste group, who run the Hindi newspapers are traditionally vegetarians.

They do it with missionary zeal. Abattoirs are termed 'Qatl-khane', not 'Bucharkhana' or 'Salughterhouse'.

They do everything to target meat eating habits and link non-vegetarianism with 'tamsik pravrittti',  'violence, evil influences' et al.

This is [Rajasthan] Patrika, a mass circulated daily, which is published from half-a-dozen states and has huge circulation in Rajasthan and MP.

Similarly, Dainik Bhaskar is largest circulated daily in Rajasthan, MP and other North Indian states. These papers aggressively campaign against non-vegetarians. If there is a religious function, they publish half to full page reports, with headlines against 'non-vegetarianism'.

They run campaigns against slaughterhouses and force authorities to close them. The owners may not belong to caste that is even 1% of Indian population. But due to control over mass media, they are able to project 'set of values' and decide what is moral, what is immoral.

When right-wing groups demand shifting of meat shops, these papers side with them, openly take stand. The owners have NGOs and groups linked to them, who then hold candle-light vigils and support the movement.

The paper then publishes them prominently to create false perception that how bad non-vegetarianism is. They try their best to force the people involved in non-vegetarianism, out of their jobs. The paper tells that North Indian states have higher population of vegetarians are pro-BJP.

READ: 72% Indians are non-vegetarians, vegetarians are a minority, says RGI report

It is all a reflection of the same 'hegemony system'. You own papers that sell in millions and are read by common folk across villages. You run campaigns asking people to shun non vegetarian food, even try to stop giving eggs to tribal kids in 'angan-wadis', which not only affect their nutrition but also goes against tribals' age-old food habits.

But then, that's how it goes. The power of media. Unfortunately, people on the ground, fail to realise how easily this manipulation is done. Need of the hour is to take on these manipulators head-on and make them shed the facade of being 'unbiased' media houses. 

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Cow vigilantes' terror in India: Pehlu Khan lynched in Rajasthan, Muslims constantly on the target

Once again, cow vigilantes have killed a Muslim man.

Pehlu Khan, a middle-aged man, had gone to buy bovines for milk.

Self-styled cow protection group members attacked Khan and his companions. The man was murdered in cold-blood.

Vipin Yadav, Kalu Ram Yadav and Ravendra Yadav--the three culprits have been arrested.

This horrific incident has occurred in Alwar district in Rajasthan.

The private militias, known as 'Gau Rakshaks' [euphemism for illegal extremist groups who kill innocents in the name of cow] are again responsible for the murder.

Khan who belonged to Nuh, Mewat had gone to buy bovines. On way back, the mini-truck was stopped by 'Gau-Rakshaks'. He showed the receipt that he had bought the cow legally.

But the 'Gau Rakshaks' attacked him, kept thrashing him until he fell unconscious. He was admitted to hospital where he died because of the injuries. The police didn't reach the spot until the incident occurred.

READ, WATCH VIDEO: How Cow Vigilantes' Terrorism Led to Pahlu Khan's death 

The incident has occurred in BJP ruled Rajasthan. Here, earlier too Gau Rakshak groups have attacked Muslims. Chief minister Vasundhara Raje has failed to rein in the extremists.

Akhlaq, father of an armyman, was killed in his house at Bisadha near Dadri in Uttar Pradesh just on mere suspicion that there was beef stored in the fridge of the house.

Last year Minhaj Ansari was killed in Jharkhand.

Besides, a man, Mazloom Ansari, and a teenaged boy, Imtiaz, were hanged by Gau Atankis earlier.

Mazloom and Imtiaz' bodies were found hanging by the tree.

Clothes had been stuff into their mouths. Even this incident couldn't shake 'national conscience'.

They were cattle traders. The incident had occurred near Balumath, close to Ranchi. READ

The incidents have occurred across India--from Jammu and Kashmir to Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh to Haryana, Jharkhand to Madhya Pradesh and UP.

Clearly, law-and-order has collapsed in the country. India is becoming one of the most dangerous place for minorities, especially, Muslims. We must record what is happening around us. For, we don't know what future holds for us.


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Concerns over false messages spreading hatred through WhatsApp in India: Worries over impact on society, law-and-order and communal harmony

Daily dose of false propaganda, communal messages, videos and hate can wreak havoc.

'The message is the medium' is an important article on this subject, which tells us how similar propaganda led to the genocide in Rwanda where 8 lakh people were killed in just 12 weeks.

Sushant Singh's powerful piece should wake us up about the situation that is arising because of such propaganda, false messages, unverified videos that are forwarded--incident of another country, termed as an incident here and blaming certain groups, even imaginary and absolutely false stories to spread communalism.

"From early 1990, anti-Tutsi articles and graphic cartoons had begun appearing in the Kangura newspaper. In June 1993, the RTLMC began broadcasting in Rwanda. The radio station was rowdy and used language of the street — like any other popular radio station, there were disc jockeys, pop music and phone-ins. It was designed to appeal to the unemployed, the delinquents and the gangs of thugs in the militia...", says the article.

READ: The Message Is The Medium

"The transcripts of RTLMC’s broadcasts are available in Duke University’s International Monitor Institute. A lot of attention has since been focused on the radio station’s efforts to direct the extermination — broadcasts told people to “go to work” and everyone knew that meant get your machete and kill Tutsis.

But what has escaped greater scrutiny is the manner — by demonising the Tutsis and encouraging hate and violence — in which the radio station prepared the ground among the people of Rwanda for genocide. The transcripts reveal RTLMC’s efforts to claim authority over the telling of Rwandan history whereby the hardline Hutu extremists exercised a monopoly over the truth".

"If radio was a powerful medium then, where you only needed a transistor and a few batteries, we have the smart phone and WhatsApp today. In the past few years, several instances have come to light where communal clashes are being planned or instigated through false videos circulating on WhatsApp."

"The police acknowledged that WhatsApp groups were used to incite the Muzaffarnagar riots in UP in the run-up to the 2014 elections. The gau rakshaks, the Jat agitators, and protestors in Kashmir also take advantage of WhatsApp groups to organise themselves."

"The government has responded by banning internet in such instances, making India the global leader in imposing internet blackouts. That is a tactical solution which prevents immediate violence. But the graver challenge of creating a fertile environment of hate, round-the-clock, by distorted story-telling continues unabated. It is not just the poor and semi-educated who are taken in by the alternative narrative of political propaganda on WhatsApp. The educated elite are equally guilty".

The complete article is available at the Indian Express website

Sunday, March 26, 2017

How easily 5,000 people gather to kill in a country known for non-violence: Communal riot in Gujarat's Patan leaves two dead

Two persons were killed in the communal riot in Patan town in Gujarat.

The incident is alarming as the mob comprised of 5,000 persons.

Newspapers report that after a minor tiff between two youths belonging to different communities, the mob gathered and attacked a village where Muslims mostly live.

That 5,000 people could gather and attack to kill, shows the level of hate and communal divide in India. 

Ironically, in India, it is common to claim and pat ourselves on back for our being a 'non-violent society'.

People are simply turning more and more bigoted, ready to attack the 'other'. And, neither the political leadership, nor any social movement, has been able to de-radicalise people in this country.

The situation is extremely worrying. Here, there is no war or food scarcity like in some African countries, where thousands can turn attackers, all of a sudden. Yet, this keeps happening in India, again and again.

Truth is that it is one of the most violent societies in the world. The use of words like 'Ahimsa' or non-violence is limited to books, speeches and essays. The ground reality is that since 1960s, communal riots have killed hundreds of thousands in this country.