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Arnab Goswami’s art of Sangh baiting

October 13, 2011 Leave a comment

Arnab Goswami’s panel to discuss the Prashant Bhushan assault deliberately included two “village simpletons” — Bhim Singh of Panthers Party and Rakesh Sinha of the RSS, the kind that can be predictably relied upon to provide the incendiary material that the sophisticates cannot stomach. The rest are glib tongued “intellectuals”. Arnab knows the Bhim types will fall for the bait he has in store for them. Predictably falling for this bait, Bhim and Rakesh while criticizing the violence, also say that Prashant Bhushan has no right to ask for plebiscite in J&K. Arnab and fellow buddhijeevis tch, tch this “uncouth”, “violent” Sanghi behavior and suggest that by the secular law of associativity and by a neat jump in logic, Bhim is actually ok with this violence. Ergo, this is typical violent behavior from the Sangh and the root behind all this is BJP-RSS. Mission accomplished. No such super logic is used when Islamic terrorists blow up people on a regular basis to arrive at similar general inferences.

Bhim Singh and Rakesh Sinha could have turned this around to Arnab actually. Using the same jump in logic it could be argued that those who fail to criticize Prashant Bhushan for saying that Kashmir can be independent are actually ok with losing J&K. And by the same law of associativity these are anti-nationals who can be jailed for sedition.

Prashant Bhushan assaulted

October 12, 2011 Leave a comment

Prashant Bhushan was roughed up in his chambers supposedly by a youth of the Bhagat Singh Kranti Sena. Karmic retribution perhaps. While Prashant has been baiting nationalistic Indians recently with his vitriolic and anti-national views, the correct course of action for those who would like to respond to the likes of Prashant Bhushan is to make them answerable in a court of law. A hundred cases of sedition and treason, around the country,  making him ping pong from court to court would work wonders. Also quite ironic that a maoist sympathiser should be so rattled by a few slaps.

Prashant’s father Shanti Bhushan has in the past defended the Arundhati “Gandhians with Guns” Roy and also the notorious Teesta Setalvad. Like Arundhati Roy, Prashant Bhushan has been critical of supposed armed forces excess (asked for DNA profiling of unmarked graves) in Jammu and Kashmir. Prashant has not so much as blinked for the 350,000 Pandits languishing in refugee camps in his native Delhi but is hyper active with “liberal”  causes — which in the Indian context is about pandering to the lowest common denominator in other religions/political systems.

Recently this column pointed out that the BJP/RSS should dump team Anna which has the likes of Prashant on its rolls. In light of his latest statement on plebiscite in J&K, this looks like a no brainer now.

Prashant Bhushan says BJP/RSS is communal

October 10, 2011 Leave a comment

Prashant Bhushan made an outrageous statement on Arnab Goswami’s program on Times Now today by saying that they would welcome support from the BJP and RSS even though they were communal. Team Anna is basically a group of rabble rouse leftists — the kind if in power, would ensure that their ego-centric leftist ideologies trump development and progress with a myriad of “intellectual” arguments to back them up. If the likes of Prashant Bhushan ever had the opportunity to run this country they would ensure that the country remained poor and hooked to handouts from the World Bank/Ford Foundation. The Magsaysay award is indeed precisely reserved for such worthies. I would predict that if they start tasting success, this movement would begin to look like what we had seen with say V.P Singh — seemingly clean at the outset but would later degenerate to some bizarre anti-national cause (like the Mandal movement) of their liking.

The JP movement against the dictatorial Indira Gandhi succeeded only with the support of the RSS and the Jan Sangh. If the BJP has the slightest iota of self respect they should ask Prashant to apologize else leave him and his team of opinionated limelight seekers to grind to dust. Even if the BJP helps them out, they will be dumped in the end and there will not be even the hint of a bare nod of gratitude as is evident right now. Far from it, it is likely that the Lok Pal bodies will be loaded with the likes of Prashant Bhushan and Santosh Hegde which would happily hunt the toothless tigers like the BJP down and bask in the limelight. Team Anna does not have the vertebrate strength to simply appreciate fundamental good from wherever it may come but constantly seeks to further their pet causes while pandering to pop political correctness (like the “communal BJP” view) no matter how absurd their basis. Team Anna better clarify what their view of the BJP/RSS really is before it can be lent support by the BJP. But given the lack of realpolitik on the part of the B JP leadership at the center I think the BJP will be used and flushed by the likes of Team Anna.

Kiran Bedi says BJP support was crucial

August 29, 2011 Leave a comment

BJP support was crucial in getting over the Janlokpal impasse as per Kiran Bedi. Nice that somebody in the Anna team at least honestly acknowledged the support of the BJP. Left to the BJP itself, given its ineptness in media and publicity management, it would have done all the good work and been unable to extract any mileage out of it.

Any nationalists in Bollywood?

February 24, 2010 2 comments

Question that comes to mind is why this Paki loving actorSRK,  acclaimed as “King Khan” by clueless Indians who historically have been and continue to be butchered by multiple maniacs with the same last name, does not get a strong rebuttal from his counterparts in the actor community? Why do the likes of Bachchan or his ilk or for that matter even the common man not pull up this guy (and teach him a stern lesson) for being blatantly anti-national, playing the Paki card, raking up and reviving a dying issue just in time for the release of his crappy movie? No wonder, it is left to the likes of the Shiva Sena to do what they do and more power to them.

Rape and abuse of nuns by Indian Church: Pink Chaddis missing

April 9, 2009 6 comments

Rape and abuse of nuns in Indian churches is rampant although again simply ignored by the media which is obsessed with policing seeming excesses by the Hindu right. While the gory story of  paedophilia in the western and american church is well documented and received worldwide attention, the pusillanimous Indian state/media/intelligentsia which showers the so called minorities in India with largesse at the cost of the Hindus, refuses to make public the horror stories of the Church in India.

Read the below piece by George Augustine:

http://www.vijayvaani.com/FrmPublicDisplayArticle.aspx?id=493

This Church is a Cruel Joke
George Augustine
08 Apr 2009

The rotting ills of the Catholic Church have been evident in India for a long time, attracting nation-wide attention in the mid-1960s with Kerala’s infamous Madatharuvi murder case, when a Catholic priest, accused of murdering a woman, escaped the noose with the aid of an expensive, flamboyant lawyer imported from Delhi.

In those days, much like today, nobody cared, nor had the time, to listen to the woes of the women slaves (called nuns) of the most autocratic, misogynistic and scandalous organisation in the world. The devious polity of modern India put a blanket on the rightful debate on alien and criminal religious practices, and their ethical and moral effect on the indigenous people and society.

Numerous unreported suicides

There are no available figures on the number of suicides of nuns till now, but the writer personally knows of a number of suicides of nuns in Kerala that never got reported in the press. Only those cases in which the victims had some relative to question the unnatural death ever got into the newspapers. Otherwise there were just obituaries.

Sr. Abhaya’s case would have been written off as suicide, as many murders of nuns have been dismissed, but for her cousin, Jomon Puthenpurakal, who himself came close to becoming a victim. On 11 August 2008, Sr. Anupa Mary committed suicide in St. Mary’s Convent, Kollam, leaving a suicide note that accused a senior nun in the convent of sexual harassment.

A few days later, two girl inmates of an orphanage run by the Holy Cross Order in which Sr. Anupa was ordained, tried to commit suicide and later accused an apprentice priest Benedict of harassment. On 11 February 2009, Sr. Josephine who lived in the Daughters of Mary Convent in Thiruvananthapuram, committed suicide. Harassment was alleged initially, but that too went up in smoke. None of these cases deserved investigation because the accused is the Catholic Church, one of the few untouchable organisations in modern Indian polity.

The sexual abuse of nuns by Catholic priests is no rare news and not restricted to Kerala. It is as common and virulent worldwide as Catholic paedophilia. In a report, quoted in the Catholic National Reporter in the USA in the 1990s, Sister Maura O’Donohue, a medical doctor, said the sexual abuse of nuns by priests had been documented in 23 countries. The detailed report would inspire only fantasy porno writers, for such is the ingenuity exercised by the sworn, supposedly ascetic, clergymen to satiate their perverted sexual urges with their helpless women slaves and wives of men congregating in the churches.

Would you blame the hormone-driven human beneath the cassock, or the irrational, sexually aberrant Catholic Church, which is polluting the entire world with its perversions? No wonder, the head of the Church, Ratzinger alias Benedict, the present Pope, is blaming condoms for HIV/AIDS!

Suicide is not the solution

However, the tide seems to turning back; the slaves are garnering strength and slowly beginning to escape the holes and caves where they are psychologically and physically imprisoned. They are beginning to understand that suicides are not the right solution. Ex-sister Jesme’s autobiography, “Amen”, published by DC Books, is a revelation of the sexual exploitation of the vulnerable women in the possession of the Catholic Church.

The publication of this book came close on the heels of an allegation by a nun in her 60s, from the Congregation of Daughters of Mary Convent in Anchal, accusing the Church of forced abortions of young nuns in the convent. According to her nephew, the nun is still being kept in a Church-owned mental hospital near Thodupuzha. Some nuns in Njarakal near Kochi openly rebelled against the Church in February 2009 for trying to move them forcibly from the convent where they have been living for years.

Acting on complaints received by it, the Kerala State Women’s Commission submitted a recommendation to the government last year to stipulate the minimum age for joining nunnery at 18 years. The Church raised a furore, typically making a mockery of the Commission, and the government back-pedalled without further notice, probably due to the imminent national elections.

The Women’s Commission also could not act with any direction on the complaint of the nun (from the Daughters of Mary Convent in Anchal) forced into the mental asylum, even though its Chairperson had gone to meet her. There seems to be nothing the Kerala citizens can do, because these nuns are the possession of the richest private organisation in India and the world.

What does the Kerala Catholic laity say about the hardships of nuns? Nothing! They keep mum, so that they are blessed and buried in the right hole in the cemetery when they die! A brief survey conducted by this writer in Kerala among the Catholic community in Kochi showed that about 80% believe they will go to hell if they are not buried by weirdoes. All are worried about what their neighbours talk and leave everything, including dispensation of justice, to god. A small percentage believes that accusations against clergymen and Church are the workings of Satan.

Straight from whose heart?

Whitewashing the accumulating dirt in the house has become an increasingly regular, but difficult, task for the Catholic Church. This time the attempt was quick, but not very effective. The stains show miserably. Kerala’s grand old extremist, who two years ago exhorted the Kerala Catholic laity to reproduce like rats to combat the rising Muslim population, and who is now President of the Catholic Bishops Conference of India, released a book, “Straight from the Heart”.

“Straight from the Vatican’s Heart” would have been more appropriate for its content. The 82-year-old Cardinal Mar Varkey Vithayathil rues over the state of Catholic nuns and says they are compelled to do menial jobs for priests, but keeps mum on sexual exploitation. According to The Times of India, 17 March 2009, he writes, “I would say to a great extent our nuns are not emancipated women. They are often kept under submission by the fear of revenge by priests. That’s how the priests get away with whatever humiliation they heap upon them. It is a pitiable situation from which somebody has to liberate them.”

In an autocracy, in which he is a senior and top regional official, what has he done so far to reverse this situation? He also doesn’t mention that Kerala Church is an exporter of menial female labour for European convents and Church institutions, and that their pay packets are entirely confiscated by the Church.

It is very clear that Vithayathil’s mention of the pathetic nuns in his book is a last-minute knee-jerk response to Jesme’s “Amen”, hurriedly appended to a finished book intended for something else – to meddle in electoral politics to garner votes for UDF candidates.

The Church’s open call to vote against the Marxists is especially aimed at subverting secular reforms, which are very much needed in the state. It is evinced by the Cardinal’s tirade against the recommendations of the Kerala Law Reforms Commission, which advocated hundred percent secular reforms in religious institutions.

Indigestible reforms

One recommendation, which is a particularly indigestible bit of meat in the Catholic stomach, pertains to the handover of Church properties to Christian trusts consisting of ordinary lay people. In a press statement (17 March 2009), the Chairman of the Commission, V.R. Krishna Iyer, said this recommendation was based on “representations made by sincere Christians” and that leading thinkers like Justice K.T. Thomas and Dr. K.V. Pylee, former Vice Chancellor of Cochin University, fully supported the Commission’s recommendations.

The bills, if made into laws, will take away Vatican’s control over Church properties in Kerala and discourage Catholics from mindless reproduction. “Canonical papal control over Church properties in Kerala will be a new imperialism repugnant to the secular character and sovereign authority of ‘we the people of India’,” said Mr. Iyer, while asking the Church to withdraw a pastoral letter circulating in churches and chapels all over Kerala that trashed the Commission’s recommendations. Mr. Iyer added, “The vast properties of the Church in the State were the product of parishioners’ contributions and naturally the management of the estate must have democratic dimensions giving a voice to the Christian parishioners.”

Vithayathil’s book takes Catholic hypocrisy to a pinnacle. He literally grinds his teeth when speaking of Marxists, whom he refers to as “atheists,” and loses control over logic: “Where is the logic of democracy if they are convinced atheists? …Democracy is based on respect for the individual and the rule ‘of the people, by the people, for the people.’”

The Catholic Church is the most undemocratic organisation in India or elsewhere, but Vithayathil is following the footsteps of his chief Ratzinger, who invariably combines insipid erudition with stupid logic, a kind of language to fool his dim half-wit sheep. But the Cardinal has a good word for the BJP for their – guess what – “promoting certain moral values for which they would opt for stricter media censorship.” He tries to woo Hindus in the traditional Christian esoteric language that can be deciphered only by those who have seen the proverbial “underbelly of the beast.”

He writes tongue-in-cheek, “Catholics of the country also regard Indian culture, philosophy, literature and science as their heritage. The Catholic Church will certainly protect them just as it has responsibly protected and preserved Greek and Roman cultures.”

What these words mean is that Catholics have a claim on Indian tradition and will protect it in Vatican-franchised museums, just like they had reduced (“protected and preserved”) ancient Greek and Roman cultures. In reality, it was the Arabs who redeemed the leftovers of the Greek and Roman traditions from the obnoxious padres who did their best to destroy them. Are there still takers for this grotesque faith?

The author previously wrote under the name George Thundiparambil; he is the author of Maya, a novel on Kerala’s turbulent past

Media reaction – Mangalore vs Kolkata

April 8, 2009 1 comment

I remember that the Kolkata incident where Muslims held the editor of The Statesman hostage, played out at the same time as the Mangalore pub incident. I personally got wind of it because I receive regular updates from “The unregulated media” (as Burka Dutt puts it). It received near zero coverage in the English media, but for a column  called “Stand up to the Mullahs” by Vir Sanghvi. Vir incidentally seems to have a once a year epiphany about the dual standards applied by the pseudo-liberals as far as Hindu sensibilities are concerned.

The Kolkata  incident was completely ignored by the otherwise hyper vigilant media/intelligentsia/pink chaddis, who are notorious for policing BJP ruled states. One can see why political parties behave the way they do however ludicrous it may be. However why does a seemingly independent media behave so, unless it is actually merely a mouthpiece of a particular government ideology?

Read the below piece by Sankrant Sanu about this.

Standing up against Muslim and Hindu zealots

http://www.chowk.com/articles/mangalore-vs-kolkata-sankrant-sanu.htm

Is government, media and even civil society in India intimidated by Islamic religious zealots?

Religious zealots abused women sitting in a pub in Mangalore in Karnataka, India. Zealots from another religion violently protested against the publication of an article in the Statesman in West Bengal.

While the government in Karnataka proceeded to arrest the religious extremists in Mangalore, the government in West Bengal succumbed to their variants in Kolkata, arresting the editor instead. The first incident received widespread media-coverage and editorial condemnation and while the second, in comparison, was largely papered over. What lies at the heart of this difference in approach?

‘The Statesman’ in Kolkata reproduced an article titled ‘Why should I respect these oppressive religions’ written by Johann Hari that was first published in the Independent London. http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-why-sh ould-i-respect-these-oppressive-religions-1517789.html . The article recommended that the right of free expression should not be curtailed by religious zealotry. It ended with promoting membership of the National Secular Society in UK for fighting for secularism and freedom of speech.

As a result of the article, a Muslim group of 4,000 people protested outside The Statesman’s office and demanded arrest of the Editor and Publisher. Some violence broke out. The Communist Party of India (Marxist) led government of West Bengal could not resist the pressure. The Editor and Publisher of The Statesman were arrested for publishing the article.

There are some interesting parallels and contrasts between this incident and what happened in Mangalore. A few weeks ago, a Hindu group beat-up some women in Mangalore who were visiting a pub. Civil society was outraged and the Karnataka government took swift action, arresting the perpetrators and standing up for civil liberty.

Both these cases are fundamentally about free expression and speech. In Mangalore the issue was of the freedom for women to visit pubs without intimidation by religious zealots. In Kolkata the issue was the right of a newspaper editor to publish a reasoned academic critique of religious fundamentalism (and a defense of free speech) without intimidation by a different set of religious zealots.

The issue is not about the relative merits of defending visits to pubs versus the right to a reasoned academic discussion and debate in a free democratic society. Far more interesting is the response of the Indian establishment, media and civil society.

1. While in both cases, a private group of religious zealots wanted to curtail free expression, in Karnataka the BJP-led government sided with free expression by arresting the Hindu religious zealots. In West Bengal, the communist-led government sided with the Muslim religious zealots by arresting Ravindra Kumar and Anand Sinha, the editor and publisher of the Kolkata-based English daily The Statesman.

2. While the violence by the religious zealots of the self-styled “Shri Ram Sena” received huge media coverage and condemnation by the national and coverage by international media the larger violence by a bigger mob of religious zealots in Kolkata received hardly any coverage in relative terms. A preliminary analysis shows that the Mangalore incident received about hundred times the media coverage of the incident in Kolkata.

3. While it was heartening to see civil society rally around in large numbers against the acts of a small group of private Hindu vigilantes in Mangalore—including starting a Facebook group which garnered over 50,000 members , the state did take quick action against the vigilantes; on the other hand, the draconian actions of the state itself against free expression in Kolkata—a case which really requires civil society to be more vigilant—hardly evoked a response. Even more surprising is the apathy of the Indian media to rally to the defense of the editor of the Statesman–one of their kind. The Indian media downplayed the incidence, and with the notable exception of Vir Sanghvi of the Hindustan Times, there were few editorial condemnations.

The Mangalore pub violence and that of the mob in Kolkata are both outrageous strikes against civil liberty. However if our goal is primarily civil liberty rather than the advocacy of particular political or religious agendas, it behooves us to understand the mechanics of this differential response by the state, media and civil society. In order to do so, here are some preliminary questions.

1. Is an attack of freedom of expression of a newspaper editor less significant than that of a woman going to a pub?

2. How much of the frenzy about the Mangalore pub incident media-orchestrated? Why would the media choose to orchestrate it?

3. Does the Indian media, on the average, have a political or religious bias? Is this bias institutionalized or decentralized? Where does this stem from?

4. Vir Sanghvi, in his article on this topic writes: “It is now clear that the liberal society has been suckered into relaxing its standards for free speech by militant Islamists.” Is this true? What are the consequences of this?

5. Is the response by the state in Kolkata due to “political compulsions”? Why is the communist government of West Bengal under political compulsion from Islamic zealots while the BJP-ruled state of Karnataka not under similar political compulsion from Hindu zealots?

6. It is interesting to note that Johann Hari, who wrote the original article in The Independent, is known for his advocacy of secularism. Yet few Indian secularists stood up for him. Has Indian secularism essentially turned into apologia for Islamic religious zealotry? What will this mean in terms of long-term consequences for Indian civil society?