13.9.11

Modi's Fast 'Undo' Death: Gujarat's Shame


While L.K.Advani is on to his next rath yatra against corruption (yawn), Narendra Modi is planning to go on a fast. It is not to celebrate his ‘victory’ in the 2002 Gujarat riots case. That would seem as though he was seriously concerned. He never was. For him, after the destruction, Gujarat was a playground to experiment, and like all experiments the state became a laboratory where everything was controlled. Naturally, ‘peace’ prevailed. So, cunningly, he is fasting for peace when he should go on an indefinite hunger strike against himself.

The BJP members are cheering. Why? Because the Supreme Court, the final destination for justice, has washed its hands off the petition filed in the Gulberg Society massacre during the Gujarat riots of 2002.

They are cheering because it has found no “prosecutable evidence” against Narendra Modi and his cohorts. There is absolutely no remorse or shame expressed about the actual incidence of riots that took place.

Here are a few comments:

L.K.Advani:

“Never in history of India has there been misinformation propaganda against any political leader as it has been against Modi”
He said the Gujarat chief minister has been maligned in an unfair manner and described him as an outstanding leader, capable of discharging every responsibility assigned by the party.

Strange that he was never assigned any responsibility of note. Were they too concerned about his reputation and the “misinformation”?

Sushma Swaraj, leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha:

“Narendrabhai has passed the agnipareeksha. My heartiest congratulations to him. Satyamev Jayate. Varsho baad aaj satya ki vijay hui hai” (truth shall prevail. After years the truth is victorious)

What agneepareeksha? Did he go away to the forests? Was he suspected by his own parivar? Did they put him through a trial by fire? Get your Ramayana references right at least. He is the inheritor of the Ram Rajya PR guys and did his burning of Lanka with his tail to come out looking like a saviour and get those brownie points.

Arun Jaitley, leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha:

“BJP has throughout maintained that allegations against Narendra Modi are totally false and there is no shred of evidence against him to connect him with the unfortunate riots…Propaganda is no substitute for evidence.”

What about the propaganda by the saffron parties that he was innocent – is that a substitute for evidence?

If Mr. Jaitley describes the riots as unfortunate (had the same number of people been killed in a bomb blast would it just be “unfortunate”?), then has the BJP attempted to make sure the culprits are brought to book? Have we ever heard any senior leader from the Hindutva parties call for an inquiry into the riots?

Why is it only about being “vindicated” because Modi has passed muster?

Now that the SC has given the case to the Special Investigation Team (SIT) and will not even bother to monitor it, we really need to consider that this is not just about the widow of Ehsan Jafri, Zakia Jafri’s petition. It is about the several other cases as well, including encounter deaths, that will get such “clean chits”. Let us not forget that the Godhra train probe acquitted the maulvi who was considered the “mastermind”. Should we see Modi in a similar light?

Not possible. Ms. Jafri’s petition is a call for accountability that every Anna and paisa is tom-tomming about these days:

“The constitutionally elected head of the state (is) responsible for fundamental rights, right to life and property of all citizens regardless of caste, community and gender. Alleged to be the architect of a criminal conspiracy to subvert constitutional governance and the rule of law; unleash unlawful and illegal practices during the mass carnage and thereafter protecting the accused who played a direct as well as indirect role and abetted commission of the crime.”

This is accountability. Have we seen ‘evidence’ of it?

To jog the memories of those who forget, after the Godhra verdict, the head of the SIT, R. K. Raghavan, had said, “I have a mixed opinion on the judgement. I am satisfied with the Godhra train burning verdict, but I am pained as so many lives were lost due to the incident.”

And this is what I had written in response: How can a person in his position have a mixed opinion on a ‘judgement’? A judgement is declared after cases of people who have died are brought to court. It still has eight cases of post-Godhra rioting pending before it, including Naroda Patia and Gulberg Society. Hope he is ready for more pain.

Now, what do we think the SIT will do? The trial court will decide on the basis of the its findings. The SIT is to take into account the report of the amicus curiae. There are bound to be differences. So, who will prevail? Will it consider the number of dead?

We are seeing a disgusting display of victory by the party leadership, instead.

Modi himself has said “God is great!” Did he say that when his state was burning? What about god’s greatness where the victims’ families are concerned?



It is ironical that this man is going on a three day fast. Here is his letter in full; my responses are embedded:

My Dear sisters and brothers,
My Salutations!
Yesterday, the Apex Court of the country delivered an important judgment regarding the 2002 communal riots in Gujarat.

Touché! He accepts these were communal riots.

Everyone is interpreting this judgment in his own way. For political analysts it has one meaning and for legal experts it has another meaning. Someone is interpreting it as victory someone else as defeat. Everyone has his own point of view.

The few hundreds who were killed have no point of view. Don’t sit on this liberal bandwagon when it suits you. There was a concerted massacre and that is not a point of view.

One thing is apparent from the Supreme Court's judgment. The unhealthy environment created by the unfounded and false allegations made against me and Government of Gujarat, after 2002 riots, has come to an end. For the past ten years, it has become fashionable to defame me and the State of Gujarat. These elements who could not tolerate any positive development of Gujarat have not left any stone unturned to defame Gujarat. It is difficult to say whether this campaign of defamation will stop even after the judgment of the Supreme Court. But one thing is certain that the credibility of those who have been spreading lies and defaming Gujarat has come to its lowest ebb. The people of this country will not trust such elements anymore.

One does not expect better than such reductionism from you. Asking you some questions, expecting you to prove yourself wrong and express even an iota of concern is not defamation and most certainly not fashionable. Is it fashionable when you and your friends go on and on about ‘progress’? You think it is hard work. Well, it is hard work for those fighting for justice too.

After 2002, Gujarat has not spared any effort to march towards peace, harmony and progress even amidst false propaganda, lies, conspiracies and allegations. 
'Six crore Gujaratis' has not remained merely a word. It has become the mantra of unity and human endeavor. Every citizen of Gujarat has internalized peace, harmony and development. Gujarat has experienced an unparalleled phase of peace, harmony, and development in the last decade. Gujarat is committed to march forward on this path only.

You are talking about the creamy layer and the cats that lick it. How has the ordinary man benefitted from this progress? Tell us about how the conspiracies have come in your way? You don’t have an answer because they have not. You are running a shackled ship, so this harmony is the prototype of what you want.

There is a famous saying, "Hate is never conquered by hate." The real strength of our country is its unity and harmony. Unity in diversity is the defining feature of India. It is our responsibility to strengthen unity in our social life. We have got an excellent opportunity to proceed with a positive attitude. Hence, let us come together and contribute in enhancing the dignity of Gujarat. I humbly submit before you that, as part of this responsibility to strengthen social harmony and brotherhood, I am thinking of starting a movement of "Sadbhavana Mission."

Did you not hear about the famous saying in 2002? If you had, then you would not have talked about the action-reaction theory. Will you deny that you said it like your buddies did about the Babri Masjid demolition when there is ‘evidence’ that they were there pushing the kar sevaks? One would like to be part of the positive attitude, but only after the business of justice and accountability are dealt with. Peace and economic progress cannot act as whitewash jobs. Dignity lies in how you treat the citizens’ woes and not by showing off shining streets and humming factories.

As part of this Sadbhavana Mission, I have resolved to fast for three days from, Saturday, the 17th September 2011. My fast will conclude on 19th September. I deeply believe that this fast will further strengthen Gujarat's environment of peace, unity and harmony. 
Sadbhavana Mission is completely dedicated to the society and the nation. I hope that, our effort to take Gujarat to new heights of development through peace, unity and harmony will contribute immensely in the progress and development of the nation as well.

Why are you going on a fast for it? What will three days of going hungry mean to those who have suffered? Heard about Best Bakery?

Or it this just another publicity stunt? Probably you are the BJP’s answer to Anna. A well-fed leader on a fast just might take away some of the superficial thunder from the faux Gandhian.

Always at your service,
Narendra Modi

This is what many in the service industries say. I hear from reliable sources that if the customer gets on their nerves, waiters and airline crew do not hesitate to spit in the water or juice. There are many ways to be at service with a smile, as you can see.

I cannot even say I am disappointed that there is not a word about the victims or the destruction in the riots. Not a word. Always at the service of denial.

Welcome to Sharampur, the world of the shameless…

49 comments:

  1. FV,
    1. You are one of those who lose their thinking capability when the name Modi is mentioned, just like some in Hindu community start frothing at the mouth when the word 'Muslim' (I am using the polite synonym) is uttered. One feeds on the other, if I may dare say so.
    2. I do not know what the court judgment would be in the Gulberg case, but I have a hunch that your opinions will not change, regardless. Talk about bias. (Correct me if I am wrong)
    3. You are furious that Modi never "expressed regret" for the riots. So haven't I. Does it automatically make me a killer?
    4. Don't you think holding CMship of a major state of India for a decade is responsibility?
    5. Agnipariksha is a metaphor and even if taken literally, it need not be conducted in a forest. Read up a little please.
    6. The victory display by BJP may be disgusting, but so was the high-pitch chorus run by NGOs and p-secs propped up by Congress, describing the three-times CM of Gujarat with choicest of adjectives like mass murderer etc.
    7. "God is Great" translates as Allah-Hu-Akbar. The two expressions are equally communal or secular. Take your pick.
    8. Modi or BJP have never contested that the 2002 disturbances were communal riots. How could they when the events were playing out on TV? What is so surprising about it?
    9. (Assuming) If Gujarat's progress hasn't benefitted common man, then so hasn't progress anywhere else in the world. Why make it sound as if it is unique to Modi? BTW, I spend good part of a year in Gujarat and I assure you I do not feel shackled in any manner. I hope you will not ascribe it to my religion.
    10. Hope you will display this comment.
    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  2. FV, i was waiting for this article from yesterday. And your article is what I was expecting. :)

    fake affidavits by Tessta, false propaganda by congis and other so called secular got a tight slap on their face by SC.

    You termed BJP celebration as shameless, but what will you call chest beating by congis and other so called secular on TV?

    Modiji bashing is the favorite topic to prove secular credentials. I don't know about BJP but i am very happy. After almost 10 years BJP and Modiji supporters are in the position to give fitting reply.

    You concerned about the innocent muslims killed in riots(even I as humanity comes first) but at the same time i also concerned about 59 + 300 hindus who were killed.
    If modiji is asked for apology then who will apologize for hindus?

    Modi got a breather from SC but Anti-Modi group will come back hard against him.

    God is great / Allah-hu-Akbar!
    Both are same. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have had a gut feeling for a while; that this was going to go the way of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

    No need to wonder any more.

    Only hope we have is that we can import some Law-and-Order along with MNCs in this shining India.

    ReplyDelete
  4. @ F&F "You are furious that Modi never "expressed regret" for the riots. So haven't I. Does it automatically make me a killer?"

    1. Are you a human being? If you are, how can you not? 2. Being a nazi sympathizer usually gets one into a lot of trouble in certain countries. Nazi sympathizers may not kill, but they ARE reviled and treated with contempt. I think thats fair.

    @Vande mataram - How about doing something JUST BECAUSE IT'S THE RIGHT THING TO DO?! WHAT is the POINT of saying things like:

    "You termed BJP celebration as shameless, but what will you call chest beating by congis and other so called secular on TV?"

    and

    "You concerned about the innocent muslims killed in riots(even I as humanity comes first) but at the same time i also concerned about 59 + 300 hindus who were killed.
    If modiji is asked for apology then who will apologize for hindus?"??

    Two wrongs don't make a right do they?? Justice CAN be subverted. JUST because the SC has thrown out the case against him does not mean he's innocent. He was the chief minister at the time of the riots. The riots took place under HIS watch. Whether he instigated the riots or not is besides the point. ANYONE WITH AN IOTA OF SHAME AND DECENCY WOULD'VE RESIGNED AND NEVER SHOWN HIS FACE AGAIN. HE FAILED TO PROTECT HIS CONSTITUENTS.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Meriam : Read my comments carefully, I have written humanity comes first. I am Human first Hindu later.

    You think Modiji is criminal and I think he is not. Not a singlr FIR filed against him.

    Don't talk about 2002 and 84 riots. Please talk about ethnic cleansing of Hindus from Kashmir and direct action by Muslims against hindua in 1945-47.
    The number of people suffered during these two actions is much bigger. Who will ask sorry? That spineless Abdullas or Nehru-gandhi family?

    Modiji should not apologize but the Pseudo-secular who are spreading hate propaganda must say Sorry. The day Modiji say sorry he will loose suppor of many including me.

    Hare krishna.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Merium,

    1. That I did not express regret does not mean I sympathised with the violence. Can you tell how many times have you EXPRESSED sympathy for tragic events?
    2. Instead of apologetically (just about) implying that the actions by p-secs backed by Congress were mala fide and Cynical, why don't you say it upfront? Why are you ok with using the name Modi but not ok with using the names of Teesta, Digvijay, Yechury, Brinda, Mander, Bandookwala and so on?
    3. QUOTE : "Just because the SC has thrown out the case against him does not mean he's innocent."

    Then what does? And what does this statement say about you who is pontificating about constitution, justice and law? Can we talk about bias?
    4. QUOTE :"(He should have) resigned and never shown his face again. He failed to protect his constituents."

    Why don't you tell this to those very constituents who have kept him in power for a decade with resounding majority?

    ReplyDelete
  7. VM:

    It is rare that someone waits for me. Thanks.

    There are differences in chest beating. If it is good for the chest and justice, then fine.

    I am concerned about anyone being killed anywhere, especially if it is engineered by the leaders or they look the other way. I do not need to flaunt ‘humanism’. And I have not asked for any apology.

    Regret and remorse are quite another thing. I would prefer an acceptance that something went wrong on the part of the people within the government, at the very least.

    Hitesh:

    Only hope we have is that we can import some Law-and-Order along with MNCs in this shining India.

    I should hope this was tongue-in-cheek.

    India Shining is really an outsourced fantasy. And MNCs are the fairy queens.

    ReplyDelete
  8. F&F:

    1. The only froth I know is on cappuccino; I don’t do lager.

    2. You should be more worried about the judgment in the Gulberg case rather than my opinions. But, yes, they won’t change not because you have a hunch but because the case has merit and evidence. IF the courts pay heed to that.

    3. I am not furious. In all the victory parades and discussions, there has been not a word about victims. Do you think it is okay? By your logic, then why are Muslims (and I am using a literal word here; your synonym insinuation reveals more than you’d like to believe about your bias) as a matter of course termed jihadis or jihadi apologists?

    4. Are you redefining ‘responsibility’? Does it mean holding to a seat of power for ten years? Then the al Qaeda are very responsible.

    5. I do know that agni pariksha (btw, I prefer your spelling to Sushmaji’s) need not be literal, but since I chose to do so deliberately (the Ram Rajya reference wasn’t lost on you, was it?) I did not say it was conducted in the forest. It was Sita who went to live there and had to prove her purity to her own husband because the good people and he himself had a few doubts about her conduct. I have read a lot, but thanks for the suggestions.

    6. At this point, I am referring to the victory display following the verdict. And there is a difference between how a CM conducts himself and the people, whether it is NGOs or p-secs - pseudo secular, which interestingly Modi is projecting when he talks about peace and harmony. So pull him u too, or is the wool over your eyes already?

    7. Unfortunately, I do not translate my English from the Arabic. When I quoted him, I did not think of Allah-hu-Akbar, but you have made it really easy. This is often the war cry of terrorists of a certain stripe. As you have brought this up, I must say that deep inside you think Modi belongs to the same category. Subconscious is dangerous.

    8. Oh dear, so it has to be played out on TV for our leaders to find the right terminology? They have called it action-reaction, miscreants, all the adjectives and nouns possible. A direct reference to communal riots is a rarity. And chances are they think it is one-sided. And you know which side they think it is.

    9. Each individual need not feel shackled, especially if he is sitting with a glass of spiked neembu-paani in the land of the liquor-free pure. By common man I mean the man who has no say. You referred to Bandukwalla in your other comment. I have said this before: even the well-off Muslims have coolly gone ahead with this progress projectile because it suits them. I have mentioned Bandukwalla by name, for he had come on national TV and spoken about “moving on”. Now if he changes to some other emotion, then again it is opportunistic.

    10. I have posted your comment. I am afraid I could not find the right frame to display it.

    You are welcome.

    ReplyDelete
  9. F&F:

    1. The only froth I know is on cappuccino; I don’t do lager.

    2. You should be more worried about the judgment in the Gulberg case rather than my opinions. But, yes, they won’t change not because you have a hunch but because the case has merit and evidence. IF the courts pay heed to that.

    3. I am not furious. In all the victory parades and discussions, there has been not a word about victims. Do you think it is okay? By your logic, then why are Muslims (and I am using a literal word here; your synonym insinuation reveals more than you’d like to believe about your bias) as a matter of course termed jihadis or jihadi apologists?

    4. Are you redefining ‘responsibility’? Does it mean holding to a seat of power for ten years? Then the al Qaeda are very responsible.

    5. I do know that agni pariksha (btw, I prefer your spelling to Sushmaji’s) need not be literal, but since I chose to do so deliberately (the Ram Rajya reference wasn’t lost on you, was it?) I did not say it was conducted in the forest. It was Sita who went to live there and had to prove her purity to her own husband because the good people and he himself had a few doubts about her conduct. I have read a lot, but thanks for the suggestions.

    6. At this point, I am referring to the victory display following the verdict. And there is a difference between how a CM conducts himself and the people, whether it is NGOs or p-secs - pseudo secular, which interestingly Modi is projecting when he talks about peace and harmony. So pull him u too, or is the wool over your eyes already?

    7. Unfortunately, I do not translate my English from the Arabic. When I quoted him, I did not think of Allah-hu-Akbar, but you have made it really easy. This is often the war cry of terrorists of a certain stripe. As you have brought this up, I must say that deep inside you think Modi belongs to the same category. Subconscious is dangerous.

    8. Oh dear, so it has to be played out on TV for our leaders to find the right terminology? They have called it action-reaction, miscreants, all the adjectives and nouns possible. A direct reference to communal riots is a rarity. And chances are they think it is one-sided. And you know which side they think it is.

    9. Each individual need not feel shackled, especially if he is sitting with a glass of spiked neembu-paani in the land of the liquor-free pure. By common man I mean the man who has no say. You referred to Bandukwalla in your other comment. I have said this before: even the well-off Muslims have coolly gone ahead with this progress projectile because it suits them. I have mentioned Bandukwalla by name, for he had come on national TV and spoken about “moving on”. Now if he changes to some other emotion, then again it is opportunistic.

    10. I have posted your comment. I am afraid I could not find the right frame to display it.

    You are welcome.

    ReplyDelete
  10. FV,

    Thanks for POSTING my comment!

    1. QUOTE : "(my opinions) won’t change ..because the case has merit and evidence."

    As expected, it has come down to my truth vs your truth. Do I assume that you grant the same privilege to others? The privilege of assuming their truth to be truer, irrespective of court judgments and poll victories?
    --
    2. It was interesting to see you branding Allah-Hu-Akbar as a terrorist slogan. Remember it wasn't I who did it! For the record, I do not think of "God Is Great" as a terror war cry.
    --
    3. It was also interesting to know that you do not consider elected offices as much of a responsibility - except for the effort involved in holding on to them! I suggest you spend a day with your local MLA or the guardian minister of Mumbai - or wherever it is that you live. By the way, I remember you extolling law, constitution, democracy etc which does not sit well with this attitude.
    --
    4. QUOTE : "In all the victory parades and discussions, there has been not a word about victims (of riots)."

    An argument that will only widen the gulf instead of bridging it. Where are the kind words for those who were burnt alive at Godhra? (I will leave the Pandits, partition, direct action etc for Vande Mataram to take up) How many of these NGOs have taken the trouble to ensure justice for them? Or do they secretly know Modi can ensure justice on his own if he puts his mind to it?
    ---
    5. QUOTE "... sitting with a glass of spiked neembu-paani in the land of the liquor-free pure"

    I do not know what image you have of me. I am yet to se a five-star hotel from inside. I am very much one of those common people your heart apparently bleeds for! I work and earn my bread as honestly as possible. Unfortunately I am not a Muslim and in all likelihood, will never be one. So any abuse can be heaped without a danger of me coming and slitting throats of abusers on camera muttering that "terrorist war cry". Be my unafraid guest, FV!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Vande Mataram: Funny that your humanism cant seem to extend itself to the muslim victims of gujrat. Funny that your humanism only wants to stand up for the hindu victims. I dont think you mean what you wrote (or dont know what it means) You just paid lip service to it.

    F&F: "Can you tell how many times have you EXPRESSED sympathy for tragic events?"

    Every chance I get. Ab bolo.

    " Instead of apologetically (just about) implying that the actions by p-secs backed by Congress were mala fide and Cynical, why don't you say it upfront? Why are you ok with using the name Modi but not ok with using the names of Teesta, Digvijay, Yechury, Brinda, Mander, Bandookwala and so on? "

    I am trying to GET AWAY from political affiliations and just deal with this as an aam admi. Is that ok? I am pakistani btw (OH SHIT!) I know about modi but not the others. I am sorry.

    "Then what does? And what does this statement say about you who is pontificating about constitution, justice and law? Can we talk about bias?"

    Judges are a part of the public and therefore subject to being affected/manipulated by public opinion as well as their own prejudices/biases. Mistakes and calculated omissions DO occur. The evidence is there F&F. It is being ignored. Muslims werent killing and raping themselves. And even if they had been they should've been protected from themselves.

    I hope I am not pontificating. I hope that arguing for justice is a basic civil right you want as well?

    "Why don't you tell this to those very constituents who have kept him in power for a decade with resounding majority?"

    How much money do you want to bet that no muslim voted for modi after '02? But they dont matter right? If a majority automatically means right then I dont ever want to hear about how minorities are treated in pakistan or saudi arabia or iran. And I hope you will defend or atleast refrain from condemning us the next time we're singled out for this special hypocritical criticism. The majorities in both countries are in it together.

    To BOTH of you: the bottom line is that farzana is one of the good guys. If you cant understand what she's trying to say then we're all doomed to witness repeats of gujrat. Are you prepared for that? We need to move past p-secs and bjps and apologize to each other.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Merium,

    I am sure FV will appreciate your character certificate, though I do not know when I contested the fact. I am also amused at the hint that F&F is not one of the good guys!
    --
    I take your word that you expressed sympathy for victims at every chance. I hope you take my word that though I have confessed not having expressed sympathy for victims in so many owrds, that does not automatically mean I sympathised with the killers. I suppose the discussion here is about holding of opinions, not mere expression of them.
    --
    What do you mean by aplogise to each other? I look at Gujarat riots as an internal issue of India. How does a Paki citizen become party to it except as a part of the great transnational ulama - by implication anti-Hindu? Sorry if I sounded jingoistic, but all I want is to place the issue in context.
    ---
    I noted your discourse on humanism with deep interest. Where does this humanism go when it comes to freedom of religion? Why is conversion out of Islam a punishable offence (with death in Pak, Saudi and many other countries)? Does a person cease to be human if s/he converts out of Islam? Where does the humanism go when terrorists armed to teeth are sent into India as freedom fighters? More importantly, why is there not one voice of protest against these things?
    --
    Who voted for and against Modi is a matter of conjecture. (For record, a number of Hindus also may not have voted for him). It is you, brought up on anti-Hindu Paki textbooks who is unilaterally assuming that a person voting for Modi cannot be Muslim. I suggest you study the issue. Perhaps FV can help you with data of recent local body elections in Gujarat. Muslims have not only voted for Modi's party but have also got elected on their tickets. Ab bolo!
    --
    You know about Modi but not about the other persons mentioned. I appreciate your candidness in admitting this. But it also shows that you are speaking about this issue with less of knowledge and more of prejudice (Paki textbooks again!).
    --
    If you are going to look at court judgments subjectively (accept some of them and reject others), are others to not entitled to do the same? By your logic, VHP is well within its rights to reject any court intervention on Ayodhya issue. No? I am no VHP supporter. I am only asking about the terms of reference by which you work. (Google VHP if you have not heard of them)

    ReplyDelete
  13. F&F:

    As expected, you have taken bits of what suits your POV.

    1. The question of my truth vs. your truth was because you were specifically addressing my opinion. The granting of privilege comes in when it as a matter of course become yours and mine, even if it is ‘vs’. I do not see why I should assume their perspective to be ‘truer’ when I am speaking from a position of ‘my truth’, that is based on certain facts.

    2. Re. Allah-hu-Akbar, who started it? If you are a simpleton and just mentioned it is passing, then do not gloat about it.
    Besides, I have never denied that some terrorists do use this as a war cry, just as others use ‘Jai Bajrang Bali’ and “Jai Siya Ram’. It becomes a war cry when it is used as such, just as ‘Saare jaan se achcha’ does not always mean you have to be an astronaut and declare it. Or Allama Iqbal, for that matter.

    3. Responsibility is a huge word, and I do not think Modi is a responsible man. I have been fortunate to have spent more than a day with some ministers, and I reiterate that I do believe in the Constitution. I have problems with how democracy has been debased by all political parties in almost every country. I have questioned the NGOs often.

    More importantly, for me it is the images of people I have sat with, with bullet-ridden bodies and homes torn apart that count, not checking out how ‘responsible’ the MLA has been.

    4. Stupendous. If a political leader/party alludes to the victims, it will “widen the gulf instead of bridging it”? Then do not rant about ‘Islamic terrorism” at the drop of a skull cap. It only widens the gulf. And not only were there “kind” words about Godhra, over a hundred people were arrested and the government gave the families compensation almost immediately. Besides, after every bomb blast, Muslims come out in large numbers to denounce the act. Some may call it a façade; I think it is extremely sad that they have to do so.

    5. People do not need to go to a five-star to drink neembu-paani, spiked or otherwise. It tells me a bit about how you perceive the ‘uncommon man’. You have completely ignored what I wrote in that same para:

    >>By common man I mean the man who has no say. You referred to Bandukwalla in your other comment. I have said this before: even the well-off Muslims have coolly gone ahead with this progress projectile because it suits them. I have mentioned Bandukwalla by name, for he had come on national TV and spoken about “moving on”. Now if he changes to some other emotion, then again it is opportunistic.<<

    Instead of thinking about this, you have gone into martyr mode and accused me of abusing you:

    Unfortunately I am not a Muslim and in all likelihood, will never be one. So any abuse can be heaped without a danger of me coming and slitting throats of abusers on camera muttering that "terrorist war cry". Be my unafraid guest, FV!

    This is sick. As I have said, five stars are not the yardstick of anything. And you believe that all Muslims slit the throats of abusers on camera.

    Thanks for the offer, but I cannot be a guest when I know that the door is already shut. And I am not afraid of anything. Red ants, maybe. The irony perhaps does not strike you that in your anonymity you are safer than I am, anyway. And let us not get into the details.

    I am done with discussing this with you. I see that you do not even notice the criticism of other parties. You will not comment on what I say about Chidambaram. It is fine, but it would help if you took cognisance.

    - - -

    Meriam:

    As I mentioned in one of the comments, the elite Muslims are easily co-opted because it is all about money. Some of them have sung Modi’s praises and very likely voted for him.

    Btw, should I thank you for the ‘character certificate’, although I reckon you were voicing your opinion which just seemed to be in sync with mine?

    PS: You can be my guest...even my windows are open!

    ReplyDelete
  14. FV,

    Let me begin with apologising for any hurt I may have caused. It was unintended. I do NOT think it is beneath my dignity to apologise, with or without anonimity. However, the apology is for the hurt and not for the views themselves.
    --
    I did not know the discussion was between F&F and FV as two individuals as against two viewpoints (though I assume you will find the term too dignified for my views!). If you broaden the scope, you will realize that my truth vs your truth is a debate which will go nowhere. Finding the middle ground should be the ultimate goal of any discussion. Corollary - A discussion can only progress when the two parties agree to the possibility of a middle ground. In this case, I certainly do.
    --
    I do not know why you consider me as one distinct from "the men who have no say". Is it because I have an internet connection?
    --
    I did not know Chidambaram was the "other party" (to me) in some sense. However, I have posted a brief comment on your post about him, to make amends!
    --
    As for the safety in anonimity part, let us indeed not go into details. This is not the forum for it anyway. I hope we find a more suitable time and place to discuss this issue in a more amicable manner.
    --
    If you publish this comment (in full or part), I will be able to express my apology on this forum which may help keep this debate civil - and going.

    Thanks and regards.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Merium : //Vande Mataram: Funny that your humanism cant seem to extend itself to the muslim victims of gujrat. Funny that your humanism only wants to stand up for the hindu victims. I dont think you mean what you wrote (or dont know what it means) You just paid lip service to it.//

    You have no logic, i can't derive anything from this. you are bitten by Secular insect. And that spread incurable disease.

    @FV: What if I said I endorse humanity? you can call it flaunting its upto you how you take it. People used to say we believe in judiciary, modi will be nailed, fake affidavits etc. now what happened??
    At least respect the court. Another important case of Ayodhya is in SC.
    i was waiting for you article as this is your favorite topic. Modi-bashing. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. F&F: "What do you mean by aplogise to each other? I look at Gujarat riots as an internal issue of India. How does a Paki citizen become party to it except as a part of the great transnational ulama - by implication anti-Hindu? Sorry if I sounded jingoistic, but all I want is to place the issue in context."

    You can consider me a part of the 'transnational ulema' if you want...just like I consider the deifying of every NRI by a RI, thats owns or operates a foreign company, being a part of the great MNC ulema :)

    Here I am a Pakistani Muslim suggesting we should apologise to each other for WHATEVER and you say why :)

    "Where does this humanism go when it comes to freedom of religion? "

    You should ask someone who is against freedom of religion. I am not.

    "Why is conversion out of Islam a punishable offence (with death in Pak, Saudi and many other countries)?"

    I do not know what the Quran says on this issue but I personally do not think conversion out of Islam is a punishable offence.

    "Does a person cease to be human if s/he converts out of Islam?

    sigh. ofcourse not. how do hindus take it when someone converts out of hinduism btw? such INTENSE focus on Islam all the time :) zara upnay nigheban (or is it girebhan...my urdu failing me here shit) mein jhank ke dekhein!

    "Where does the humanism go when terrorists armed to teeth are sent into India as freedom fighters?"

    It is absolutely wrong. Gujrat is wrong. The routine rape, torture and murder of hundreds of thousands of Kashmiri muslims for 20+ years is also wrong. The breaching of the Indus water treaty by India - wrong. And if Pakistan could get it's act together we'd have concrete proof of the games RAWs playing in Balochistan. All types of terrorism taking place all the time F&F! India does NOT have a moral high ground over anybody else in this region when it comes to terrorism. Get real.

    ReplyDelete
  17. F&F - "More importantly, why is there not one voice of protest against these things?"

    So you've met ALL of 180+million Pakistanis and had detailed conversations with them eh?!?! Impressive!

    "Muslims have not only voted for Modi's party but have also got elected on their tickets. Ab bolo!"

    I DO NOT BELIEVE that ANY of the direct victims of the riots have voted for modi. The elites as farzana stated can be bought and can continue to live their lives untroubled.


    "You know about Modi but not about the other persons mentioned. I appreciate your candidness in admitting this. But it also shows that you are speaking about this issue with less of knowledge and more of prejudice (Paki textbooks again!)."

    I left Pakistan when I was 13 and have lived in Canada since then. Sorry for not fitting into your indoctrination through Paki textbooks theory. I'm sure indian textbooks are full of paeans to pakistan. DO share :)
    Part of the reason I do not the names you mentioned is simply because of what is picked up and promoted in the media. And also because I am pretty illiterate. But I cant help having opinions or common sense :)


    "If you are going to look at court judgments subjectively (accept some of them and reject others), are others to not entitled to do the same?"

    We all do this all the time anyway! Do you AGREE with EVERY SINGLE judgement the courts pass out?! You'd have to be a machine! The difference in cases like gujrat or kasab is that...they...mean something...bigger...than a conviction or acquittal for murder or a robbery. So far have muslims risen up against this verdict? No. They are abiding by it. But that does not mean justice was delivered.

    God I'm tired.

    ReplyDelete
  18. F,

    I will take you up on your offer someday and you can thank me with a stroll through your favorite garden and/or a pair of kolapuris! :D

    ReplyDelete
  19. Merium,

    I find your candidness a rare and precious quality. But I am also touched - not to say a bit amused - by your naive innocence. Please read up on these issues before commenting. I agree that even I may not have read enough, but I have made special attempts to read both viewpoints and understand them on thier own terms. Even though I hold my own opinions on these issues now, I am not averse to discussing them with anyone who is interested.

    I appreciate your interest in these India-specific issues, all I wish is you back it up with knowledge to.

    Thanks and regards.

    ReplyDelete
  20. FV,
    Wow! look what happened during my absence. Looks like we may need the riot squad complete with water cannons et al!
    So, I'll keep my toes dry without stoking any more fires or calling anyone's bluff.
    However, you are wrong on two accounts:
    1. LKA's journey is not a "rath yatra" it is a "wrath yatra". Please stand corrected.
    2. There is also froth on pee. It settles much faster ... and we all pee. Albeit, some standing and some on three legs. =D
    TE

    ReplyDelete
  21. Merium //; Sorry i called you secular, u belong to that part of the world which was created after the killing of 1 million people and left 1 billion home less.

    You count your daily scores. don't poke your nose in India. Y u want sorry?
    You with your Army chiefs ask for apology for the mess you all created in Kashmir.

    @TE: Join Vaghela's fast. Better for you. :)

    ReplyDelete
  22. FV,

    This by Barkha Dutt (NOT my favourite person) is worth a read. Puts many things into perspective.

    http://tinyurl.com/3fl5ykq

    TE

    ReplyDelete
  23. F&F:

    It’s ok. But when you began with the two truths, then if two people are expressing it, then the two people are versus each other and their truths.

    Just FYI, I cannot edit posts, so no question of posting it in part. It is either the full one or not at all. Your constant refrain about this is based on a false premise. How many of your posts have not been published?

    Meriam:

    Will do…a Kolhapuri walk. And must say as a Pakistani you seem to have scored a few points for your interest :)

    VM:

    Get well soon…

    ReplyDelete
  24. TE:

    Absence makes their wrath go yonder…are rath and wrath like doth and doubt?

    Re. pee, you are being sexist. You forget the legless ones…

    What new perspective was there in the piece you linked?

    In fact, there are two grossly erroneous bits:

    1. When did Vajpayee resonate in both mohalla and country? Or, though not mentioned, Rajiv Gandhi or MMS? This pan-Indian leader thing made no sense.

    2. Wrt Prof Bandukwala (who I have already mentioned talked about ‘moving on, if I am not mistaken on the same channel and on ‘We the people’), I found the reference to his daughter about to marry a Gujarati Hindu typical of the superficial liberalism. In this context, it conveyed that this was sufficient to ‘legitimalise’ Muslims, who were “saved” by Hindu neighbours.

    Again, next time please give clear disclaimers!

    ReplyDelete
  25. FV

    Wrath makes their rath go rounder. So, yonder they will go and rounder they will grow ... whimper, whimper and wimpier.

    No sexism intended ... legless ones aren't as frothy

    Disclaimer was given ... akalmand ko ishaaraa

    TE

    ReplyDelete
  26. FV,

    I did not know blogger disallows editing of comments, because wordpress doesn't.

    ReplyDelete
  27. This is for VM:

    Whoever you may be ... you are neither Vande nor Mataram. Nor are you Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay. Whether I join Vaghela's fast or sit on a greased pole is for me to decide.

    So ... Va Moose, VM

    ReplyDelete
  28. >>>I do not know what the Quran says on this issue but I personally do not think conversion out of Islam is a punishable offence.

    If Islam alienates half of humanity, then majority of Hindus (men and women) are branded as inferior in one way or another by their own religion. I would say religion in South Asia has a marketing problem...

    It doesn't take a lot to incentivize people to leave such religions.

    >>> India does NOT have a moral high ground over anybody else in this region when it comes to terrorism. Get real.

    I would say India has remained plural society and with much vigilance; a democratic one too. Neighboring countries (which includes China too, btw) does not share the same political philosophy. So, yes India likely engages in activities that would weaken the regimes in its neighborhood. Very similar to the model (American) it follows (when we do it, it is to bring the heathens out of darkness, having taken on the role of the Conquistadors)

    Also, imagine the nightmare if every religion/sect/cult in India (and at last count India had what more Gods than people in Gujarat ?? ;) were to take up the same Jihadi fervor that ordinary disenfranchised Pakistanis feel due to the failure of their Government (and failure of Indian state are far too many to enumerate here).

    So, India due to its size operates to defeat Pakistan through diplomacy and other means sanctioned by modern rules of the game. While Pakistan due to its size, ideological leanings and long-standing mistrust of Indian elites, operates to sabotage India in the cheapest possible way. Both are sort of understandable but I don't think they benefit either in the long run and they most certainly don't benefit the huddled masses. But, they got the God on their side. Meek shall inherit the earth, indeed. (after it has been plundered of course).

    >>>I DO NOT BELIEVE that ANY of the direct victims of the riots have voted for modi. The elites as farzana stated can be bought and can continue to live their lives untroubled.

    There is also the case of "Stockholm Syndrome". At the end of the day, Muslims in Gujarat do have to make a living and get on with their lives. Sikhs did that too after the 1984 riots. It does not mean they approve of their tormentors.

    People in South Asia had to deify demons on more than few occasions.

    ReplyDelete
  29. F&F:

    I did not know whether Blogger allows editing or not, until I was specifically asked by a reader to take off some part of it. S/he had not used a sign-in. I still do not know if it is possible. However, i would like to make it clear that I will not do such a thing. Ever. Sneaky is not my style. I either won't carry the comment (and that may include overt flattery too!) or will as it is. Sad that you even thought otherwise.

    TE:

    Akalmand? Now that's a flattering thought :)

    Hitesh:

    Good points. But I'd not mind some demonisation...

    ReplyDelete
  30. Hitesh: Really good points. Thank you for making them. Have thought of them myself but sometimes you cant say it all and it's nice to have someone else on the same page :) Appreciate it. Sorry it took me so long to respond.

    ReplyDelete
  31. FV,

    No offence was meant at all. I have a blog and I have to edit comments at times. The blogger ethics say if a comment is deleted or edited, the fact should be mentioned in the comment space.

    E.g.

    ******* (Comment edited by admin due to xyz reason)
    ----
    Sometimes I edit comments in the interest of linguistic clarity or grammer too. However, extra care has to be taken in such instances so as not to alter the essence of the commentator's argument. Honour code, you see!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Hitesh,

    I strongly disagree with this Stockholm Syndrome argument when made specifically in case of Gujarat. It sounds malicious to me because those making it (including you) will be loath to accept it in other cases. For example, will you concede the point if I said that the Kashmiris need to save themselves from terrorists therefore they are throwing stones and supporting Gilani?

    Doesn't this theory fly in face of freedom of choice etc? Aren't you belittling the ballot exercised repeatedly by Gujaratis, both Hindu and Muslim?

    ReplyDelete
  33. So, if some rednecks hurt you and your family, you would go out and vote for KKK.

    Sounds pretty normal behavior to me.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Hitesh,

    I did not know KKK fought elections and put up non-white candidates. I am amazed at the one-sidedness of your thoughts and even more amazed at your apparent reluctance to declare your terms. Will you concede the point if I quoted the Kashmir argument as an example of Stockholm Syndrome? Will you agree with me if I said that in medieveal India, Hindus converted to Islam because they were terrified of the unrelenting Islamic atrocities and that it was a case of Stockholm Syndrome as well?

    At the end of the day, BJP and Modi both have to face electorate and fight elections. They have been doing it. So even if they have fangs in their mouths and horns on their heads and tails in their pants, it is of little relevance to this discussion.

    The KKK argument was in bad taste and has in turn invited my arguments which - I accept - are not very elegant either.

    ReplyDelete
  35. KKK could also win an election in Alabama (prolly elsewhere too) if allowed too.

    Hitler also won an election before he abolished them.

    Let's not go there....

    ReplyDelete
  36. F&F: You continue to evade the basic point: Muslims were murdered and tortured for being muslims in a "democracy". Thats the unvarnished truth. It's easy and flippant to say they can take it to the polls knowing that as a demographic they can realistically never vote modi out of power. You are basically demanding respect for an electoral process by the muslims that does not see them as equal citizens.

    Like I said before, even if you absolve him of directly instigating the riots you cannot get away from the fact that he was the chief and he FAILED TO DO HIS JOB. You cannot expect people to accept the destruction of their lives and move on or away without a recourse to justice. This is the type of quagmire from which beasts are born.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Meriam (Got the spelling right!) and others who are interested,

    Looking at Muslims in isolation, especially in India, will ALWAYS be counterproductive. Many social groups in India face unjust discrimination on account of their identity. Muslims happen to be JUST ONE of many such groups. India is neither a perfect country nor a perfect democracy. There are many shortcomings which need to be set right. Please do not think that Muslims are the only ones at receiving end. Hindus have been driven out of Kashmir in 1989 for no reason other than being Hindus. Sikhs were killed in 1984 for being Sikh. Dalits continue to face atrocities for being Dalits.
    --
    Now the next point. Quran openly propogates (and Muslims believe it too. I haven't found any Muslim who calls it wrong. Dinner invitation at my home is open!) strict segregation between Muslims and non-Muslims. I can quote verses but I will refrain! Most Muslim countries have openly discriminatory laws for non-Muslims on the grounds that Quran advocates it. Why go far, entry of non-Muslims is banned in Meccah. Non-Muslims are not permitted to practice and preach their religion to Muslims. I decline to buy the argument that these things will not happen in India. They have happened in exactly the same manner under Mughal/ Slave/Bahamani/Qutb (etc etc) rule and can very well happen again. Before dismissing me as one of the knickerwalas, please read Abraham Eraly's EMPERORS OF THE PEACOCK THRONE. Anyone who does not have the patience to make it through the 500 page book, can give me his/her email ID. I will mail the extracts. FV probably has them already.

    What is the real difference between Muslims practicing such discrimination and non-Muslims doing it? Do Muslims (anywhere) see non-Muslims as equal citizens with equal rights? Does the Quran approve of it?
    --
    Back to Modi. Meriam makes it sound like he is the only politico in world who failed to do his job. And She is making this reluctant concession only because the mass murderer argument is taking too long - and looks more and more unlikely - to pass legal muster. What is this if not bias?

    ReplyDelete
  38. >>>knowing that as a demographic they can realistically never vote modi out of power. You are basically demanding respect for an electoral process by the muslims that does not see them as equal citizens.

    Even in absence of riots, this is a very difficult issue for South Asia.

    This is a very crucial point and whole genesis of our own two-state solution.

    Apart from ideological differences and personal ambition (and rivalry with Nehru), Jinnah and other Muslim League leadership were genuinely concerned with Hindu majority marginalizing them through the legitimate process of democratic voting.

    But, that is why modern democracies have constitutions that provide for protection and representation of minorities.

    On the other hand, liberal democracies are yet to show up in any of the Islamic majority states (Turkey under Ataturk and Iran under Mosaddegh and even Saddam's Iraq was quite secular even if brutal).

    That combined with Pakistan's continuous flirtations with Fundamentalism, and repeated threat of terrorism within India's borders, reaction of ordinary Indians is understandable although unfortunate.

    None of this excuses the complete break-down in law and order and the fact as you very well pointed out,

    >>>he was the chief and he FAILED TO DO HIS JOB. You cannot expect people to accept the destruction of their lives and move on or away without a recourse to justice.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Hitesh,

    Modi was CM for approx three months (E&OE) before riots broke out. It was the first time he had held CM's office.

    Now, please pay attention to the following list of "mass murderers" before you resume baying for Modi's blood. I am sure that given your passinate commitment to secularism, you will approve of the above description and will start using it henceforth:


    Rajeev Gandhi (Congress) was the PM at the time of 1984 riots, with Delhi police directly reporting to his govt. He never personally expressed any regret or apology. No one has been punished for the riots to date. Tytler and Sajjan Singh held official positions in Congress for a long time subsequently. Probably, they still do.
    ---
    Sudhakarrao Naik was CM of Maharashtra at the time of Mumbai riots. Sri Krishna Commission has noted that during the riots, Naik "failed to act promptly and effectively and give clear-cut directives."
    ---
    Before 2002, Gujarat witnessed numerous riots with unfailing regularity, almost all of them under Congress govts.
    ---
    Last week, Rajasthan police killed some Muslims who were part of a rioting mob. The state's (Congress) home minister proudly justified the police action and even exorted them to repeat it in similar situations in future.
    ----
    The 1989 Bhagalpur riots took place under Congress govt of Satyendra Narayan Singh (I think). The great secular messiah Lalu ruled Bihar for fifteen years thereafter. He was most vocal in blaming Advani for the riots! The first chargesheet was filed after nearly two decades. In any case, a total of 32 persons were charged while more than 1000 had been killed. A judicial committee held 14 police officers guilty of dereliction of duty but no action was taken.

    BJP and Modi had nothing to do with this "subversion of justice".
    -----
    The 2001 Malegaon riots took place under a Congress govt. The govt appointed a single judge committe to investigate. That was the only action taken! Congress party also constituted a fact-finding committee under Motila Vora. It helpfully gave a clean chit to Vilasrao Deshmukh, the CM.

    I can go on and on. Are you ready to describe the above "secular" gentlemen as mass murderers (etc), or are you willing to accept that 2002 Gujarat riots and the follow up action was nothing out of the ordinary?

    Do you accept that your act of singling out Modi for abuse reeks of hateful bias?

    ReplyDelete
  40. >>>Now, please pay attention to the following list of "mass murderers"

    Very sorry list of things that happen in South Asia with frightening regularity because life is so cheap out there.

    Your willingness to use such incidences to lawyer for Modi indicates your abject lack of humanity.

    Even theocratic states would be ashamed of such repeated cases of human rights violations.

    Just like many places around the world, lot of Indians are turning to right wing ideologies in these times of economic turmoil and I hope they don't subvert the progressive constitution and government that many have worked to build over past 5-6 decades.

    Just remember, even though Jinnah disapproved of Gandhi's mixing of religion and politics, it was a right-wing Godse who murdered him not a Muslim.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Hitesh,

    Firstly, Modi has better lawyers than me.

    Secondly, calling me names (inhuman is just one step short of mass murderer) will not make the questions go away. I notice that you have not answered. The cases quoted by me happened because life is generally cheap in South Asia! But Gujarat 2002 hapened because Modi is probably a cannibal, is that what you are saying?

    ReplyDelete
  42. F&F: This is going to be my last comment on this miserable topic because I am not interested in having a "discussion" with someone who refuses to express any sympathy towards the victims or offer any solace to them UNCONDITIONALLY. You're very fond of inviting people over for dinner but your heart and mind are closed so dont bother next time.

    NO ONE here is suggesting that muslims are the only ones who suffer HOWEVER, THIS WAS AN ARTICLE ON MODI. THEREFORE the ensuing discussion WILL revolve around your beloved. You accused Farzana of losing her thinking capability when his name is mentioned - LOOK IN THE BLOODY MIRROR.

    I would love for you to express your views in the presence of those poor people. Do you have any idea how cruel you sound?? "yeah guys sorry but EVERYONE suffers. shit happens. it's your turn now. suck it up". Sickening.

    Neither you nor I have the requisite knowledge to debate what the Quran does or does not say. If looking at muslims in isolation will always be counterproductive so will looking at Islam ONLY. Christians dont propagate? Jehovahs witnesses dont Propagate? Even MNCS propagate for Godssake.

    Your assertion that the Quran propagates strict segregation between muslims and non muslims is complete bullshit and quite devious because you seem to be saying that since (Supposedly) the Quran green lights the segregation of non muslims WHAT HAPPENED IN GUJRAT WAS JUSTIFIED. Maybe according to the talibans twisted interpretation of the Quran segregation is acceptable but they propagate segregation of every known thing to man. They'd segregate oxygen from the air if they could. But the vast majority of muslims live in ALL PART OF THE WORLD AMONG ALL TYPES OF PEOPLE AND IF ISLAM WAS SO EXCLUSIVE IT WOULD NOT BE THE WORLDS FASTEST GROWING RELIGION. Clearly A LOT of people from ALL ethnicities find something very attractive about Islam.

    I cant BELIEVE anyone could be so hard hearted as to list what a congress vs bjp government did as a way to justify such an awful awful act. It's just so...sad.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Meriam,

    Had I known this was about expression of sympathy (unconditional, if you like) alone, I would have done it long ago (as if it matters! I am just a nobody with no say contrary to what FV believes). But the case is far different. I assure you I am not a VHP or RSS supporter. But I can certainly see ulterior motives even if they are cloaked in NGO-speak. And so can many others.

    The aim here seems to be to somehow get at Modi who is a predetermined target, while keeping a convenient mum about the context of the tragedy. Hold your horses, by context I do not mean Godhra burning. I mean the history of riots (refer my comment above) and the unending list of politicians (none from BJP) who presided over the killings and got away. These are nothing but double standards born out of hateful prejudice. In case of Gujarat riots, Modi is termed mass murderer because he was the CM, as though all rioters from across Gujarat were lining up in Ahmedabad for their wages every evening! On other hand, in case of 92 Mumbai riots, Bal Thakre is blamed though he held no official position and his party was not even in power, while no mention is made of the Congress functonaries. Motilal Vohra's clean chit to Vilasrao Deshmukh is acceptable to you while the fact that there is not one FIR against Modi in any riot case is not.

    I strongly suggest you read up on the larger issue of communal divide in India and then rejoin the debate. If you decline to participate, the loss will be entirely mine! :)

    I hope I did not hurt your faith with my comments on Islam. If my views are incorrect, I will be the first one to accept. I wish I could quote Quranic verses. But THAT will definitely hurt someone's faith! Hello FV!!

    ReplyDelete
  44. >>>The aim here seems to be to somehow

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/15/arts/people-argue-just-to-win-scholars-assert.html?pagewanted=all

    We all have faiths. Some in tolerance, some in hate; some in arguing for either ...

    For myself, I would like to see tomorrow 's kids in South Asia to grow up with such talent as these

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7j1FSZ4sr0

    without having to explain, where they belong; what their fore-fathers or compatriots or coreligionists or the other side think of them or what they need to answer/explain and so on ...

    We all ultimately have to be comfortable in our own skin.

    ReplyDelete
  45. This is my favorite quote I saw elsewhere (with regards to the crimes of bankers in America) but it applies pretty well in this context as well ...

    We need our great myths -- justice, mercy, duty -- to stay human and carry on.

    I firmly believe that justice will be done in this country before I die.

    It may well not be; but I'll keep the faith, and the faith will keep me.

    The only other good alternative is to go zen, but I can't sit still long enough.

    ReplyDelete
  46. My last word on the matter.

    FV,

    I may not be "hemmer and sickal comanist" but having experienced the benefits and brutality of Capitalism first-hand, I do carry some reservations towards it and some sympathy for communist or at least socialist ideologies.

    I particularly admire Indian communists who play within bounds of electoral politics and respect the constitution and are one of the few principled political parties in India despite wide-spread corruption within their ranks as well.

    I am fully aware of the brutality of Stalin, Mao, Khmer Rouge and others on so-called extreme left and feel no desire to make any excuses for them.

    Having watched countless number of War movies and documentaries, I am sympathetic to Russians as well.

    I am not particularly "sickular" either. I do have sympathies for my culture and religion. Born Hindu but psychologically more inclined to Buddhism (may be due to its popularity here in the West or because it just seems most secular of all religions as it stays out of the business of the government and scientific inquiry. May be that is the reason it didn't catch on in India).

    I may sound quite emotional regarding this issue of secularism and modern Indian state but I consider myself very realist.

    The reality of the situation in South Asia is that the population is divided right down the middle in terms of their religious affiliation and there are significant differences both at the grass root level as well as among their respective elites.

    Nonetheless, we either swim or sink together seems almost a given to me. They all are looking to better life. I don't see how this perpetual internal war helps either of them in their goal to a better life.

    The Hindu nationalists (and most certainly the Democratic India) believe that they will prevail (with history on their side); just the way Capitalism prevailed over Communism. Muslims fear that flow of modern history is against their way of life and their very survival depends not only on opposing the Hindu majority state but the very idea of modern secular nation state.

    From their vantage point, the flaws of modern status quo are all too visible (whether it is injustice in Palestine or guilt by association or having to defend their minority status or to prove their patriotism wherever they happen to live)

    So, the perpetual war may not be entirely avoidable but if it can be mitigated then resources can be deployed towards desperately needed development.

    The truth of the matter is that, given our recent colonial history and general level of poverty and ignorance among our populace; neither community feels in control of its destiny.

    In such environment, fear psychosis prevails and we both take hesitating steps towards what we instinctively know to be the right way forward (that is modernity for betterment of all whom we care for).

    I just hope we don't start making giant leaps backward.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Hitesh,

    Amazing pontification from your North American (I presume!) vantage point! The content is quite banal and soporific so nobody in South Asia can have the energy to disagree!

    I hope your sermon makes the effect that you intend it to!

    ReplyDelete
  48. I wish I had the talent of Mayawati to come up with catchy slogans like "Tilak, Tarajoo aur Tarvar, inko maro joote chaar".

    Next time, I will try to frame it in Bollywood Blockbuster Plot with any of your favorite Khans in a lead role... until then...

    ReplyDelete
  49. Hitesh,

    How about this?

    "Phoney bleedin' heart sekulaar
    Inko maro joote hazaar"

    Since this discussion is increasingly deteriorating into a virtual riot, we might as well change the idiom to poetry!

    ReplyDelete