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Archives for : December2017

Rajasthan= Muslim Migrant Labourer Hacked, Burnt to Death, activists demand


A statement by various organisations in Rajasthan has demanded provision of absolute security to all the Muslims in the state.

All organisations of Rajasthan are shocked at the recent developments of what is happening in the State in terms of lynching of Muslims, the latest one being carried out on the 25th anniversary of Babri Masjid demolition, a murder in cold blood of Mohammed Afrazul a 48 year old migrant  from West Bengal in Rajsamand, Rajasthan. There is only one demand that Vasundhara Raje, should resign now. She does not deserve to hold on to the post even for a day in the context of the absolute impunity provided to these killers and their supporters. The Home Minister of Rajasthan Gulab Chand Kataria, has proved his incompetency in controlling these crimes which has left the Muslim Community even more insecure.  The Prime Minister and the Chief Minister need to unambiguously condemn this crime.


The latest killing of Mohammed Afrazul from West Bengal is very disturbing. The attack leading to the murder was shot by a mobile along with the confessions of the murderer Shambhu Lal Regar, appealing to the people of Mewar “…..that the people with Islamic Vichardhara are all over in black clothes outside Masjids, in public places and around, they are a threat to our cultural heritage and destroying it. Just like Maharana Pratap had decided to fight Islamic Jehad, So do we, have to eliminate the present Islamic Jehad. So I have done it, it may be good or bad, but I have done it. Because I felt that I have to do it. I am a law abiding citizen, but you die only once, so why not eliminate them and then die. Why should we be killed them.  That is why I did it. 25 years ago the Babri Masjid was demolished but even that has not changed anything, So I am going to surrender tomorrow in the Rajsamand Mahadev temple. All the Bhai and Behen, the people of Mewar support me, I am surrendering in front of you. Jai Mewar, Jai Bharat, Jai Hind”. In the video where he is seen to kill the man, he is also talking of ending love jehad


Both the videos of the killing and the confession along with photos of the charred body have gone viral on social media.  Although the police have arrested the murderer Shambhu Lal Regar and the nephew who had shot the video, but it is important to reach the people who motivated him to carry out this murder.


This is not the first such killing that is happening. It’s the fourth in the last nine months, showing absolute impunity to the killers of Muslims.  We would also like to state that there have been many incidents where Muslims have been attacked as part of hate crimes and not been killed so the number of incidents are huge.  The killings in the last nine months are as follows:


The first one being that of Pehlu Khan, a dairy farmer and cattle rearer who died on the 3rd of April, after being attacked by a crowd of so called Gau Rakshaks in Behror, Alwar on the 1st of April. The killers named by him were not even arrested, instead 7 others have been arrested and are all out on bail.


The second killing happened on 16th June in the name of Swach Bharat Abhiyan of comrade Zafar Khan, the Municipality chairperson and other Safai Karmachari beat him to death in Pratapgarh town, when he was opposing their naming and shaming policy as part of making Pratapgarh open defecation free. The police has not arrested anybody, claiming that he died of a heart attack, completely protecting the municipality people.


The third killing happened on the 10th of November, 2017, in the early hours, when Umair Khan and his colleagues were transporting cows and were shot by so called Gau Rakshaks in Govindgarh Tehsil, Alwar district. The killers carried the body to a railway track 15 kms away and tried to destroy all evidence of the face and the body. Out of the seven killers only two were arrested and instead, the victims of the firing, Tahir and Javed are now behind bars.


What happened yesterday in Rajsamand on the 6th of December is the 4th killing.


Our demands are


·         Clear and unambiguous condemnation of this and other hate attacks by the Prime Minister and the Chief Minister.

·         CM Vasundhara Raje resign now.

·         Immediate arrest of all the killers and attackers in hate crimes in Rajasthan.

·         Provide absolute security to all the Muslims in the State.

·         Stop this culture of hate and violence against Muslims as it will seep into every dimension of our lives and it will be difficult to stop it.

·         The BJP party which is in power with 160 MLA out of 200 needs to stop giving protection to these killers.

·         The RSS hate programme needs to be banned.


We are,



Peoples’ Union for Civil Liberties, Rajasthan, Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangatha, Rajasthan Nagrik Manch, Dalit Shoshan Mukti Manch, National Federation of Indian Women, All India Democratic Women’s Association, Jan Vichar Manch, Dr. Ambedkar Vichar Manch, Welfare Party, Jamait

 Islami Hind, Zari Handloom Work Union, SIO, Rajasthan Samagra Sewa Sangh, Akhil Bhartiya Kisan Sabha, SFI, Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan, Suchna evam Rozgar  Adhikar Manch, Dalit Adhikar Kendra, National Muslim Women Welfare Society, Vividha, Mahila, Punarvas Samooh, NAPM, SDPI, Samta Gyan Vigyan Samiti, RUWA, Pink City Zari Handloom Work Mazdoor Union, Aaritari Zardoz Ekta Sangathan, HRLN, Zamayte Ulema Hind, JDU, Samajwadi Party,, Rajasthan Kacchi Basti Federation, Jaipur Kacchi Basti Maha Sangh, Jaipur district unit of CPIM, CPI, CPI ML, Liberation, MCPI, Banjara Yuva Shakti Sangathan, AIDMAM, Rajasthan Mahila Kamgaar Union.

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Jharkhand – Widow dies of starvation after both food ration and pension are denied to her due to #KillerAadhaar

A 64-year old widow, Premani Kunwar, died of hunger and exhaustion on 1 December in Danda Block of Garhwa district (Jharkhand). Contrary to some media reports, there was no money in Premani’s bank account when she died. Two months earlier, the Aadhaar-based payment system had redirected her pension money to a different account, without her knowledge. She was also denied her grain entitlement in August and November.


Premani Kunwar, a destitute widow who lives alone with her 13-year old son, used to receive her monthly pension of Rs 600 in her Aadhaar-linked bank account at the State Bank of India. From October onwards, however, her pension was redirected to another account (in the name of Shanti Devi, her husband’s first wife), unbeknown to her or her family or the local bank. The reason is that Shanti Devi’s account (a suspicious account – she died 25 years ago) was somehow linked with Premani’s Aadhaar number. Under the current system of Aadhaar-enabled pension payments, a person’s pension is automatically paid to whichever of his/her accounts was mostly recently seeded with Aadhaar. But most people in rural Jharkhand are unaware of this rule, which is a source of endless confusion for pensioner and NREGA workers who do not know where to look for their money. Premani’s death epitomises their hardships.

This is just one example of the objectionable banking practices associated with Aadhaar. Another example is the opening of Aadhaar-linked bank accounts (e.g. under Jan Dhan Yojana) without the consent or even knowledge of the concerned person. Sometimes bank accounts are opened in this casual manner by wholly unaccountable “business correspondents”.

In 2016, ICICI Bank opened accounts of around 6000 NREGA workers in Boram block of East Singhbhum district without their consent and linked them to their Aadhaar. Most of the workers did not know that their NREGA wages were being credited in the ICICI bank accounts.  Shell accounts have also been used to siphon off NREGA wages, as a recent investigation in Mahuadanr Block (Latehar district, Jharkhand) revealed.

Similarly, Aadhaar numbers are sometimes “seeded” into existing bank accounts without verification, or without the knowledge of the account holders. This is a dangerous practice that opens the door to fraud.

The practice of automatically redirecting pensions or NREGA wages to the “last Aadhaar-linked account”, without informing the recipients, is particularly objectionable. Recently, a massive scam of opening Airtel payment bank accounts linked to Aadhaar of mobile subscribers of Airtel without their consent has been unearthed. It was found that LPG subsidy and other online payments were redirected to the Airtel accounts without the consent and knowledge of subscribers.

It is even more shocking that someone’s pension can be redirected to a different account without informing her, as happened to Premani Kunwar with fatal consequences.

 Denial of food rations

Premani was also deprived of her food rations from the public distribution system in August and November. Premani had an Antyodaya card, which normally enabled her to buy her monthly quota of 35 kg of rice (minus a 2 kg cut) at Re 1/kg from the local ration shop. In September, Premani had to use most of her food ration to return what she had borrowed in August to survive. In November, the dealer took her fingerprint (biometric authentication is compulsory for food rations in Jharkhand, in the online system) but told her that he would give her rice later. Meanwhile, she died.

These irregularities are directly related to Aadhaar. The reason why there was no distribution in August is that local dealers were not allotted any rice for that month. Instead, they were told that they should distribute from the accumulated stocks that had been generated in preceding months due to transaction failures (e.g. due to lack of connectivity or biometric failures). Meanwhile, however, many dealers had sold these stocks in the market. So in August they simply told the cardholders that they had nothing to distribute.

In addition, dealers started tampering with digital records in order to hide accumulated stocks. One way they do this is to separate authentication and distribution – get people’s fingerprints, tell them that they would get rice later, and then play hide-and-seek. This seems to be what happened to Premani in November.

Circumstances of death

Deprived of both food and cash, Premani lived in a state of semi-starvation from August (if not before). Sometimes her son brought leftover rice from the midday meal at school, but there was little else to eat most of the time. Before she died, she had gone without proper food for 15 days. No food had been cooked in her house for eight days preceding her death.

Continuing denial by the government

Premani’s death adds to the growing evidence of violation of mere right to life of people in Jharkhand caused by the Central and state government’s drive to link delivery of welfare services with Aadhaar. Rather than acknowledging the massive violations caused by this policy, the state government has gone in an overdrive to deny that starvation is still a reality in Jharkhand.


Report of fact finding into the death of Premani Kunwar

Place of visit – Korta village, Danda Gram Panchayat, Danda block, Garhwa, Jharkhand

Date of visit – 4-5 December 2017

Members of investigating team – Mithilesh Kumar, Jawahar Mehta, Ravinder Bhuiyan, Sakina, Sarfaraz, Siraj (on behalf of the Right to Food Campaign, Jharkhand)

Summary of finding

Premani Kunwar, a 64 years old widow and living with her thirteen years old son Uttam was completely dependent on the grain entitlements 35 kgs/month under National Food Security Act (NFSA) and pension (Rs.600/month) under the Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS). Lack of sufficient food and nutrition was a regular affair in her family. She did not get her grain entitlement of 35 kgs in November 2017. She also did not get the pension of September-October 2017 (Rs. 1200) as it was credited to the account of Shanti Devi, whose bank account is linked with Premani’s Aadhaar, without her knowledge. Premani last withdrew her pension on 8 September 2017 following which there was no money left in her account. No food had been cooked in her house for 8 days preceding the date of her death (1 December 2017) as there was no grain in the house and Premani did not have proper meals in this duration. In November, she had borrowed some uncooked grain, cooked rice and sattu from her neighbours. She passed away in the early morning of 1 December 2017 because of continual starvation that was at its worst in the last eight days before her death.

Detailed report

Details of family

Premani Kunwar, aged 64, was the second wife of late Mutur Mahto who passed away around 15 years back. She is survived by a son, Uttam Mahto aged 13, who lived with her. He is studying in 7th class in the government school. The first wife of Mutur Mahto, Shanti Devi passed away around 25 years back. Mutur Mahto and Shanti Devi had 6 children – four sons and two daughters. The oldest three brothers and two daughters are married.

All of them (Premani Kunwar, Uttam Mahto and the four brothers and their wives) live on the same plot. The kuchcha house, in which all the family members are living, is built on an area of around 7 decimals and is in a dilapidated state. Premani and Uttam shared two rooms of the house. Premani’s family and families of the brother do not own any land, apart from the land on which their house is situated. They also do not take land from others on bantayi system for cultivation, as they cannot afford the cost of input material such as fertilisers etc.

The four brothers work as unskilled labourers mainly in mason works and get 10-15 days of work per month on an average. Their wives also work as labourers sometimes in local agricultural works. The four brothers have four Priority Household cards under NFSA. The names of three members of their families are missing in their cards.

Premani Kunwar had an Antyoday ration card (Annexure 1- card no. 202000172021)Annexure 1 – Pramani Kunwar’s ration card

under National Food Security Act and was a pensioner under the Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme.

Details of the death

When Uttam woke up in the early morning of 1st December, he found Premani dead. He immediately informed other family members. The Block Development Officer (also functioning as the Marketing Officer) visited the family the same day and inspected their rooms and inquired about the death. He was told by the family that Premani had died because of starvation. He promised Rs. 10000 to the family for immediate needs. The family has not been given that money yet.

Status of availability of food in the family

  • According to Premani’s son, step-sons and daughter-in-laws and the neighbours, no food had been cooked in Premani’s home for eight days before her death because of lack of grains at home. She did not eat anything on 29thand 30th November as there was no food.
  • Premani and Uttam were entitled to 35 kg of ration on their Antyoday card under the NFSA. She did not get any ration in August 2017 as the dealer did not distribute ration in that month. But the dealer made an entry of 35 kgs grain for August 2017 in her ration card (Annexure 1). She had borrowed some rice from her neighbours for that month. She got her ration in September and October. She used the ration to repay the loans and also sold a part of it to buy other essentials such as kerosene oil etc. Even though, she was entitled to 35 kgs of grains per month, she was given only 33 kgs by the dealer. But the dealer transacted 35 kgs on her card (as per the online transaction list of September and October 2017) and also entered the same in her card.
  • Premani did not get ration in the month of November 2017. As she had become weak in the absence of sufficient food, she had to be taken on a bike to the dealer on 29 November for toauthenticate her identity for getting the ration. She was accompanied by one of her daughters-in-law Rima Devi and her son Uttam. The dealer made her give her thumbprint in the POS machine for authenticating her ration transaction for November 2017, but did not give her the grain. There is an entry on her card for 29 November 2017 in the online transaction list of that month (Annexure – 2). The dealer also made an entry of 35 kgs grains for November 2017 in her ration card (Annexure – 1). According to the Uttam and Rima Devi, the dealer had said that he did not have grains and had asked Premani to come on 2 December 2017 to collect her ration.
  • In November, Premani had borrowed some cooked rice from neighbours. She had borrowed 1 kg rice from Gulbaso Kunwar around 10 days before her death. She had gone to Gulbaso again after a few days to borrow some more rice, but Gulbaso could not give her more as she did not have enough herself. Premani also borrowed some cooked rice from Lilavati Devi. She was also given some sattu(one bowl) by Ramlal Mehta. Her son was getting lunch under the Mid Day Meal scheme in his school. He also brought some leftover rice for his mother sometimes.
  • Premani’s step family also gave her some cooked rice at times. According to Rima Devi and Rajkumari Devi, the grains that they used to get under NFSA could feed their respective families for only 10-15 days/month. For the rest of the month, they also had to borrow rice from neighbours at times.
  • According to Uttam and the daughters-in-law, Premani and her son were surviving primarily on rice. Dal had not been cooked in the Premani’s family for over a year. Vegetables had not been cooked since a couple of months. Garlic and sugar were not used by the family for more than a year. On 4 December 2017, there was only 2 litres of kerosene oil at their house and no rice or even salt.
  • The family member and the neighbours stated that Premani had become physically weak gradually the in absence of sufficient food. According to the Rima Devi and Rajkumari Devi (daughters in law), Premani was completely dependent on her grain entitlements. If she did not get her ration time, she used to go hungry unless someone gave her some food.
  • Earlier Premani used to work as unskilled agricultural labourer in the village (for harvesting rice, wheat etc.), but she stopped doing it since the last one year as she got weak. She had also stopped taking part in annual festivals such as Chhath because of her weakness. However, Premani’s family informed that she was not suffering from any illness.

Access to old age pension

  • Premani Kunwar was enrolled in old age pension (Rs. 600/month). The bank passbook and bank statement shows that the flow of pension was not regular. Premani had last withdrawn her pensions of Rs. 1200 (for July-August) on 8 September 2017. As per her latest bank statement (as on 5 December 2017), she does not have any money left in her account after that withdrawal (Annexure – 3). According to the family members, she went to the bank in October and November enquiring about her pensions for September-October, but was repeatedly told by the bank functionaries that her pension had not been credited in her account. Premani would return home and cry that she was not getting her pensions.
  • As per the financial transaction details of Premani’s Aadhaar card (available on the Public Fund Management System website), the pension for September-October 2017 (Rs. 1200) has been credited to the account of Shanti Devi (Annexure – 4). The Bank Manager, Mr. Ajay Tirkey, of the local branch of State Bank of India also confirmed this. He also shared the screenshot of the Aadhaar-bank account linkage that shows that Shanti Devi’s account was linked to Premani’s Aadhaar on 10 October 2017 due to which Premani’s pension for October-November was credited in Shanti Devi’s account. Shanti Devi’s account was based in the Piprakalan branch of SBI which is around 22 kms from the village. The branch manager also shared that, according to his bank’s software, the Premani’s Aadhaar was linked to two bank accounts (Premani’s and Shanti’s) and he admitted that the did not know the reason for this (Annexure – 5).
  • According to Garhwa’s Deputy Commissioner, Premani’s pension of September-October 2017 had been transferred to the account of Mutur Mahto’s first wife, Shanti Devi as her account got linked with Premani’s Aadhaar number. The Deputy Commissioner said that it was a technical glitch in the transition period of linking pensions with Aadhaar. According to Shanti Devi’s sons, they were not aware of any such account of their mother. They were also not aware that the pension had been credited to that account. The Branch Manager shared that the account was opened in 2007 and was being operated through the Priprakala branch. When the Branch Manager was told that Shanti Devi, Mutur Mahto’s first wife, died 25 years ago, he said that he did not know the details of this account as it was opened in a different branch.

Status of general well-being of the Premani’s family

Premani’s two rooms lie absolutely bare except for a few things such as a broken cot, a cloth liner with some clothes, a few utensils and a drum etc. (Annexure – 6). Premani and Uttam had only one blanket.

Access of the family to other social welfare programmes

The families of Premani and her step sons did not have Job Cards under MGNREGA. Even though the women of these families work as agricultural labourers in the village and want work under MGRNEGA, they do not have Job Cards. According to them, all the MGNREGA work in the village is done using excavation machines (JCB). Rima Devi, Babita Devi and Rajkumari Devi had also applied for pucca houses under the Indira Awas Yojana (and Prime Minister Awas Yojana) multiple times in the Gram Sabha and also to the Mukhiya, but houses have not been sanctioned for them yet. Premani’s son Uttam also said that eggs were not being given in lunch under Mid Day Meal scheme in his school since the last 2-3 months.

Village-level findings


All the villagers present in the meeting on 4 December 2017 in the village said that the dealer had not distributed ration in August 2017. The dealer said that he did not get allocation for that month. It also emerged that the dealer made many cardholders authenticate their thumbprint in the POS machine in November (to claim the grain entitlement for that month) and told them to collect the ration in December. On 5 December, some cardholders went to the dealer to collect their ration, but he turned them away by saying that only those families would get ration which had authenticated their thumbprint in November. The villagers also said that the dealer cuts 2-3 kgs of ration from Antyoday cards and 0.5 kg/person for PH cards.

There are some card holders such as Sanju Devi (202000172107) and Ramsingh Mahto (202000171924) who are not getting their grain entitlements since the last few months. The reason given by the dealer is “load nahi ho raha hai”. As per the online list of PH cards, Ramsingh Mahto’s card has been deleted.

Some single women such as Kaleshwari Kunwar (Husband – Lt. Bandhu Thakur), Gangiya Kunwar (Husband – Lt. Prabodh Mahto), Ram Kali Kunwar (Husband – Lt. Jaygobind Sah) and Ramkali Kunwar (Husband – Lt. Rampawan Mahto) had Antodyay cards before NFSA was implemented. But they have been given Priority Household cards under NFSA.


No MGNREGA work is going on in the village. Work last happened in June 2017 in some schemes of land levelling and dobhas. The villages unequivocally said that most of the excavation was done by contractors using JCB machines. Many families need work, but do not get work.

Dealer’s comments to Premani’s death and situation in village

The dealer Shivnath Ram said that he could not distribute ration in August 2017 as he had not been allocated grains for that month. Regarding the distribution of ration to Premani Kunwar for the month of November, he said that Premani had come on a bike (as she was weak) with her daughter-in-law and son. She authenticated her thumbprint for taking the grains for November, but did not take them as she did not have a bora with her. She said she would send someone with the bora, but did not. He also said that no one in the village was being denied their grain entitlements and was not aware that any card had been cancelled.

When asked if he was aware that people who do not have Aadhaar card cannot be denied their grain entitlements, he said that he had received the letter on 3 December. It is interesting to note that he received the letter almost a month and half after Minister for food, Saryu Rai had announced that people will not be denied their ration in absence of Aadhaar.

Block Pramukh’s comments on Premani’s death

The block Pramukh Virendra Chowdhary claimed that the dealer had collected the allotted grains on 28 November. When Premani went to the dealer to get ration on 29 November, he did not give her the grain entitlements but entered the date of collection of ration in Premani’s ration card as 27 November. He also confirmed that no food had been cooked at her home for a week before her death because of lack of grains.

Civil Surgeon’s comment on Premani’s death

The Civil Surgeon, when contacted on his phone, said that he had sent the post-mortem report to the Deputy Commissioner and was not allowed to share the findings.

Deputy Commissioner’s comments on Premani’s death

The Deputy Commissioner, Ms. Neha Arora, refused to give a copy of the post-mortem report and said that it would have to be sought through Right to Information. She verbally shared the finding of the post mortem report and showed the copy to the team. She said that the report found some (300ml) semi-digested food in the stomach of Premani and hence she had not died of hunger. According to the report, the cause of the death could not be ascertained from the post-mortem and the viscera would have to be sent for forensics for further examination. However, as per the news published in Prabhat Khabar on 4 December 2017 (Annexure 7), the district public relations officer has claimed that she died of illness.

When it was shared that the dealer did not distribute ration in August 2017 and he was not allocated ration, the Deputy Commissioner said that she was not aware of this. She also repeated the dealer’s version of why Premani did not get ration in November. However, she also said she had sent a show-cause notice to the dealer on why he had not given the grains to Premani.

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India – Wait till next week before you decide on linking #Aadhaar

It has been 849 days since the Indian Supreme Court decided to set up a Constitution Bench to examine if Aadhaar project violates Indian Constitution. Every day that the court delays in deciding on this matter, there are more instances of people suffering because Aadhaar has been made ‘mandatorily voluntary’. Since the matter didn’t get listed in the Supreme Court on its own, there was a mentioning by the lawyers today in morning in the court of the Chief Justice of India.

At this mentioning, the Attorney General of India, Mr. K. K. Venugopal, said in the court that the Government of India will publish a notification tomorrow extending the 31st December 2017 deadline to link Section 7 notifications (PDS, NREGA, disability assistance, MDM and over 100 others) to 31st March, 2018 EXCEPT in the case of mobile-Aadhaar linkage. The Attorney General added that in the case of mobile-Aadhaar linking the deadline will continue to be 6th February 2018 since it will require a judicial order to extend to 31st March 2018 because the Supreme Court had, in the Lokniti Foundation case, ordered Aadhaar verification of all mobiles by 6th February 2018. (Note: There is also an opinion that the mandatory Aadhaar verification of mobile numbers is a misreading of the court’s opinion in the Lokniti Foundation case.)

It is understood that this notification would extend the deadline only for those without Aadhaar and that those with Aadhaar will have still have to link to bank accounts and other services by 31st December 2017, similar to the PAN judgement earlier this year where in those with Aadhaar had to mention their Aadhaar number when filing their Income Tax returns but those without Aadhaar needn’t do so. In the present case, this will be confirmed only if and when such a notification is published by the Government of India as indicated by the Attorney General.

Mr. Shyam Divan, advocating for the petitioners in the Aadhaar case, insisted that the deadline should be extended for both those with and without Aadhaar and that the government should assure citizens that no coercive action will be taken against Aadhaar holders. To this the Attorney General replied that if this is the case then nobody will produce the Aadhaar number and was prepared to argue on this point. The Chief Justice of India gave his assurance that a Constitution Bench will decide on the matter of providing interim relief next week till such time that this matter is decided by the Supreme Court.


For those without Aadhaar: Be on the lookout for the notification mentioned by the Attorney General at the court. If this notification comes out, it is likely that you can wait at least till 31st March 2018 before linking.

For those with Aadhaar: Again, be on the lookout for the notification mentioned by the Attorney General at the court. If this notification doesn’t exempt those with Aadhaar from the 31st December 2017 linking deadline, then wait till the Constitution Bench hearing next week to see if interim relief is offered by the Supreme Court.

As a disclaimer we at Rethink Aadhaar urge you to personally assess risk and make an independent decision. Our updates are not legal advice and are aimed to creating public awareness.

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Modi  government’s FRDI bill may take away all your hard-earned money

Here’s how the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill may help the banks take away all your hard-earned money. Without your consent!

Photo: ReutersPhoto: Reuters

Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill, 2017 is the new bomb that may be dropped on commoners by the Modi government.

What is this bill all about and how is it going to affect you?

In June 2017, the Central government approved the FRDI Bill which is intended to frame new rules for banks that are failing. It has created panic among savings account holders. According to the Bill, if a bank is failing, may be allowed to use depositors’ money to stay afloat. What this means is that the bank can reduce its liability of paying its depositors, that is you, by either locking your money for a longer time or asking you to take a hit on your deposits.

Currently, your deposit in the bank is insured up to a specified limit.According to the 1961 Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, up to Rs 1 lakh of your money deposited in a bank is insured if a bank were to fail. In practice, however, the Reserve Bank has ensured that this never happens. Failing, or weak banks, have been merged or allowed to be taken over by healthier banks including their liabilities.

But the proposed banking reforms bill will change that. That, some say, will give government banks, private banks and insurance agencies more power over your money.

FYI | What is a bail-in?

The Bill provides for “bail-in” powers to banks. A rescuing body known as Resolution Corporation has been proposed under the Bill which can use your money in case the bank sinks.This is different from a traditional bailout in which government’s money helps bank tide over the crisis. In case of a bail-in, it is the bank’s own deposits (that is your money) that is used to rescue the bank or reduce its liabilities.


When you deposit money in a bank or invest in fixed deposits, you trust the bank with keeping your money safe, forever. Even a remote possibility of you having to lose it all or even part of it for no fault of yours is disturbing.

We take you through 10 steps which will help you understand the Bill:


  • Under Section 52 of the FRDI Bill, the rescue body can cancel even the Rs 1 lakh insurance that you get under the current law. In this case, a bank can even declare that they don’t owe you any money at all.
  • The same Section provides an option to the rescue body to modify a bank’s liability. For example, if you deposit a certain amount of money for a certain period of time as savings (say, 5 or 10 years), the bank can keep the money in a locked-in period (in a FD) and change the time period without consulting you.
  • According to the bill, the bank may be exempted to fulfill its promises to depositors in extreme cases. This means you lose all your money.
  • This can happen in case of an economic downturn, when banks (who provide money to large corporations who are unable to repay the amount) ask for a bail-in option.
  • The bank may turn your savings into a fixed deposit without asking you and that too at a lower interest rate and you cannot even challenge it, unless, you challenge the law.

This is the first time that a Bill of this sort has been proposed in India. However, it has happened before in a few countries. ADeccan Chronicle report said a bail-in provision was used in Bank of Cyprus in 2013 which led to a loss of money of half of its depositors who were uninsured (the people who had deposited money over a certain limit).It is going to challenge the rights of a commoner as ideally, the government should look for money held by big corporations in case of a bail-in but, that won’t be the case once this Bill is passed.

It would not be an exaggeration to say that if this Bill is passed in the Parliament, the depositors’ rights may go down the drain, that is if the bank is going down the drain.

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 Sena, Bajrang Dal activists defy prohibitory orders in Ayodhya to take out ‘victory procession

Babri Mosque demolition anniversary

 Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena activists taking out a ‘victory procession’ in Ayodhya on December 6, 2017 – Srawan Shukla

Wednesday 6 December 2017 21:18 IST

Raising ‘Jai Sri Ram’ slogans, saffron-clad Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena activists took out a ‘victory procession’ in Ayodhya on Wednesday to celebrate 25 years of Babri mosque demolition in gross violation of Section 144 of the IPC enforced in the temple town and the advisory issued by the Central government.

It is for the first time in the aftermath of Babri mosque demolition that slogan-raising saffron brigade activists took to streets to create communal frenzy in Ayodhya, despite enforcement of Section 144. The procession went through main thoroughfares of communally-sensitive town in Faizabad district, including high-security zone of the disputed site and Muslim-dominated areas of the temple town.

Pitch of slogans was shriller when they passed through Muslim-dominated areas and outer of high-security disputed complex. Each year on the day (December 6), prohibitory order under Section 144 is enforced in Ayodhya to disallow congregation of more than five persons. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) programs are restricted within the precincts of Karsevakpuram and no one from either side is allowed to take out victory procession on Ayodhya streets.

Watch Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena activists’  ‘victory procession’ in Ayodhya: 

Emboldened by pro-Hindutva governments at the Centre and state, Bajrang Dal and Shiv Sena activists blatantly defied the prohibitory orders on Wednesday. Interestingly, the police and security forces did not bother to stop the procession at any place or dare to arrest any saffron brigade activists for violating prohibitory orders.

The SSP Faizabad Subhash Singh Baghel has taken strong note of the victory march despite prohibitory orders.

“We had not given permission for any victory procession. Since Secion 144 was enforced in Ayodhya, it amounts to violating the prohibitory orders. We have arrested two activists and lodged an FIR against 250 unidentified workers,” said the Faizabad SSP.

The SSP has however denied that anyone in the procession was carrying swords or any arms.

Earlier, Shiv Sena activists took a holy dip in river Saryu and renewed their resolve to construct grand Ram temple at the disputed site, irrespective of court verdict.

“Where is Babri mosque? The land belongs to us. We are in possession of the land and are doing puja there. Ram temple is to be constructed at that site only. I don’t know why media calls it a disputed site when we are the owners,” reacted Vinay Katiyar, BJP Rajya Sabha member and founder President of the Bajrang Dal, the youth wing of the VHP.

“What shall we expect from the BJP government when they allowed a new tradition today in Ayodhya. It reminded us of December 6, 1992 when hundreds of thousand kar sevaks attacked us and brazenly celebrated demolition of Babri mosque on streets. Police and security forces were a mute spectator then and today also,” rued Iqbal Anasri, a petitioner in the title suit pending at the Supreme Court.

Iqbal’s father late Hashim Ansari was one of the oldest petitioners in the title suit. Ansari’s house was torched on December 6, 1992 by kar sevaks. However, Hashim and his family had escaped unhurt in the attack. Iqbal, who is now contesting the case after his father’s death, said that they will lodge a complaint in this regard with the SSP and DM to initiate action against these activists for violting Section 144.

“After seeing today’s ‘tamasha’, do you think that they (read Hindus) will abide by the Supreme Court final verdict if it went against them?” questioned UP Sunni Central Wakq Board petitioner Haji Mehboob.

“Both sides should patiently wait for the Supreme Court verdict instead of issuing public statements,” advised Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahali, a prominent Sunni Cleric and a member of the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board  (AIMPLB).

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Posters from the PFI pasted in Meerut (Image courtesy: Srawan Shukla)

Meanwhile, controversial posters from the Popular Front of India (PFI), reminding Muslims “not to forget 25 years of betrayal and fight for re-building Babri mosque”, were pasted in Muslim-dominated areas of Meerut district on Tuesday evening. The posters were issued by PFI with G-78, Second Floor, Kalindi Kunj Road, New Delhi. “Posters have been removed and an FIR has been lodged,” said the SSP Manjil Saini.

At Karsevakpuram in Ayodhya, the VHP celebrated ‘Shaurya Diwas’ to celebrate silver jubilee of mosque demolition. Amidst fiery speeches of saffron-clad sadhus and saints and VHP leaders, they took a pledge to begin the construction of Ram temple at the earliest.

“Temple will be built at the birthplace of Lord Ram only whatever the court verdict,” said Mahant Satyendra Das, Chief Priest of Ram Lala makeshift temple ate the disputed site.

“We will not allow construction of any mosque in Ayodhya, only Ram temple. Dharam Sansad has already passed a resolution in this regard,” stated Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, Chairman, Ram Janambhoomi Nyas, which is spearheading the Ram temple movement.

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VHP celebrating ‘Shurya Diwas’ at Karsewakpuram in Ayodhya (Image courtesy: Srawan Shukla)

Mahant Ramdas of Nirmohi Akhara pointed that two third of the land is with Hindus, the court battle is to get remaining land for the construction of grand Ram temple in Ayodhya.

Ever since Yogi government removed hurdles after ban by the Akhilesh government, about 20 trucks of stones have arrived at the VHP workshop in Ayodhya. About 60 per cent stones have been carved as per the design of the temple, work on remaining is in full swing.

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India – Max Hospital makes profit of up to 525% on syringes #WTFnews

Rema Nagarajan| TNN | 

An investigation by the deputy director general of the Competition Commission of India has concluded that Max Super Speciality Hospital, Patparganj, has been making 275% to 525% profit on sale of disposable syringes by abusing its dominant position to force inpatients to buy such products from its own pharmacy.

The report also detailed how the extracting of such “huge profits margins” from inpatients was prevalent across all 14 hospitals of the Max group. The report, in fact, indicates that the practice of corporate hospitals making huge margins from inpatients is widely prevalent.

CCI was looking into a complaint filed by a patient’s attendant, Vijay Sharma. Sharma said he had bought a disposable syringe made by Becton Dickson India Ltd (BD) at a maximum retail price (MRP) of Rs 19.50 when it was available for Rs 11.50 in the open market. In January 2016, CCI found the hospital and BD Ltd prima facie guilty of colluding to sell syringes from the hospital’s pharmacy at double the open market price and asked its deputy director general to investigate the issue within 60 days.

Almost two years later, the investigation report prepared by CCI deputy director general Rakesh Vashishth lays bare the standard practice of manufacturers selling devices to hospitals at a fraction of the printed MRP at which hospitals sell to the patients, raking in “super-normal profits”. BD Ltd’s submissions during the investigation admitted that this was “standard industry practice followed by all manufacturing companies in India”. The hospital too stated that “the sale of syringes at MRP is consistent with market practice followed by other hospitals generally”.

With both stating that they merely followed standard business practices, what emerges is that inpatients at private hospitals in India are being forced to pay up to five times the actual cost of medical devices or disposables like syringes, pushing up their bills enormously. In the private healthcare market, consumables and medicines constitute typically 40-50% of an inpatient’s bill.

A senior Max group executive explained in the course of the investigation that medicines and devices were sold at MRP and that no discounts were given to patients by its pharmacy. The report noted that instead of charging “a reasonable margin” on the actual price at which the hospital procured the syringes, Max group was charging at MRP. The hospital was acting as a trader, whereby it purchased blister pack syringes from the market and sold it to inpatients at “unfair and excessive profits”, noted the report.

BD submitted that the difference between the two syringes bought by Sharma was in the packing — the one bought from the hospital was in blister packing, which costs more, while that bought from the open market was in flow wrap. It further submitted that it sold syringes at different discounts to hospitals depending on their size, volume purchased and as a strategy to bag a contract. Max Hospital being a chain could buy larger volumes and a range of other products and hence got a cheaper price than many others, explained BD.

According to the report, similar or identical products were available in the open market at discounted rates, but since the hospital insisted on inpatients procuring from its own pharmacy, “it was a clear instance of abuse of the dominant position” and spatial monopoly enjoyed by the hospital in earning “supernormal profits”. The investigation also fixed individual responsibility within Max Hospital

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सिस्टम के शिकार लोगों को न्याय कैसे? रवीश कुमार के साथ प्राइम टाइम

जब सिस्टम फेल होता है तब एक नागरिक कमज़ोर हो जाता है. वह अपने इंसाफ़ की लड़ाई के लिए दर दर भटकने लगता है.


नाम के लिए दलों की संख्या भले हज़ार हो मगर उन सभी की राजनीति एक जैसी हो गई है, सिर्फ नेता ही अलग अलग हैं. इसी का परिणाम हैं कि अब हम इस बात पर बहस नहीं करते कि इस नीति या राजनीति से हमें क्या फायदा है, समाज को क्या फायदा, दो नेताओं के बीच के अंतर पर ही अपना सर दर्द बढ़ाते रहते हैं. मंदिर मस्जिद मुद्दे पर तर्कों के तीर चलने लगे हैं क्योंकि यही वो मुद्दा है जिसके चलते नेता नौकरी और व्यवस्था के सवालों से बच सकते हैं.

यह अकेला मुद्दा नहीं है यह हिन्दू मुस्लिम मुद्दे का नया पैकेज है. अयोध्या में बाबरी मस्जिद विध्वंस को लेकर दो तरह के मामले हैं. एक तो ज़मीन पर मालिकाना हक़ किस-किस का है और दूसरा कि बाबरी मस्जिद को ढहाने वाले अपराधी कौन-कौन हैं. मंदिर बनाने की मांग के शोर में अपराधियों को जल्दी सज़ा दिलाने की मांग को दबाया जा रहा है. वो आपसे मंदिर पर स्टैंड तय करने के लिए कहते हैं, लेकिन उन्हें और आपको इस पर भी अपना स्टैंड तय करना है कि संविधान और सुप्रीम कोर्ट को दिए गए भरोसे को तोड़ने और बाबरी मस्जिद गिराने की सज़ा से क्या कोई इसलिए बच जाएगा कि वो ज़ोर-ज़ोर से मंदिर-मंदिर कर रहा है. इस विवाद का कोई भी फैसला संविधान के साथ हुई वादाख़िलाफ़ी की सज़ा के बग़ैर पूरा हो ही नहीं सकता है. संविधान की सर्वोच्चता के बग़ैर कोई भी राष्ट्रीयता मुकम्मल नहीं हो सकती है.

6 दिसंबर के दिन एक दूसरी दुनिया भी है जहां मंदिर मस्जिद विवाद नहीं है, जहां डाक्टर अंबेडकर हैं. उन्हें याद करने वाले इस दिन उनसे भी ज़्यादा संविधान को याद करते हैं, उस किताब में अंबेडकर दिखाई देते हैं इसलिए उन्हें अपने जीवन की बेहतरी और सम्मान के लिए धन्यवाद देते हैं, पुण्यतिथि पर फिर से स्मरण करते हैं. 14 अप्रैल की अंबेडकर जयंती और 6 दिसंबर की उनकी पुण्यतिथि में बाबरी मस्जिद ध्वंस की घटना के कारण बहुत फर्क आ जाता है. आज के दिन सियासत के उस तबके में अंबेडकर गौण हो जाते हैं जिन्हें मंदिर मुद्दे को लेकर टीवी शो में जाना होता है और उसका संकल्प दोहराने के लिए अख़बारों में लेख लिखना पड़ता है. हम इस मसले को यहीं छोड़ते हैं और आपको एक मीठी सी चेतावनी दे रहे हैं कि भावनात्मक बहसों की दुनिया आपको और आपकी आने वाली पीढ़ी को एक बार फिर से किसी गहरे भंवर में ले जा रही है. इससे निकलना इतना आसान नहीं होगा.

आईआईटी की परीक्षा की तैयारी से भी ज़्यादा मेहनत करनी होगी वरना सब फेल. इस पूरी प्रक्रिया में आप फिर से कमज़ोर होंगे बल्कि लगातार कमज़ोर होते जा रहे हैं. बाबरी मस्जिद की घटना हमारे सिस्टम के बड़े स्तर पर फेल होने और आज तक फेल होते रहने का सबसे शर्मनाक और अचूक उदाहरण है. जब सिस्टम फेल होता है तब क्या होता है, तब यही होता है कि एक नागरिक कमज़ोर हो जाता है. वो अपने इंसाफ़ की लड़ाई के लिए दर दर भटकने लगता है. आपने कितने दिनों से नहीं पूछा कि थाने अपना काम ईमानदारी से कर रहे हैं या नहीं, पुलिस और अदालतों की प्रक्रिया इंसाफ हासिल करने वालों के लिए आसानी से उपलब्ध है या नहीं. सिस्टम के सितम में आज दूसरी कहानी सुनाने जा रहा हूं.

23 साल का राहुल सिंह सिस्टम में ईमानदारी की चाह रखने वाला एक इंजीनियर. 24 अगस्त 2017 को चंबल एक्सप्रेस से बिहार के भभुआ जा रहा था, अपनी पत्नी ज्योति से मिलने जो उस वक्त आठ महीने की गर्भवती थीं. ट्रेन नंबर 12176, बोगी नंबर एस-2. झांसी से ट्रेन में सवार होते ही बोगी में टीटी अपने साथ रेलवे प्रोटेक्शन फोर्स के जवानों को लिए प्रवेश करता है और यात्रियों से वसूली करने लगता है. उनके साथ मारपीट भी करता है. रोहित ने पूरी घटना का वीडियो बना लिया. जब आरपीएफ और टीटी को पता चलता है कि किसी ने वीडियो बनाया है तो वे रोहित से वीडियो डिलीट करने को कहते हैं. राहुल ने यह कहते हुए मना कर दिया कि मैं तुम लोगों को एक्सपोज़ करूंगा.

इसके बाद आरपीएफ के लोग राहुल को मारने लगते हैं. धमकी देते हैं कि छेड़खानी के आरोप में अंदर कर देंगे. राहुल गिड़गिड़ाने लगता है, छोड़ देने की बात कहता है, राहुल से थूक तक चटवाया गया. ट्रेन में सवार अन्य लोगों ने बचाने का प्रयास भी किया मगर झांसी के आगे मऊंरानीपुर में ट्रेन से राहुल को फेक देते हैं. राहुल मर जाता है. इस घटना का पता नहीं चलता अगर एक वकील कुलदीप शर्मा अगले स्टेशन पर उतरकर जीआरपी में सूचना नहीं देते. लेकिन जीआरपी वाले केस लेने से मना कर देते हैं.

इसके बाद कुलदीप शर्मा तब के रेल मंत्री सुरेश प्रभु को ट्वीट भी करते हैं. सुरेश प्रभु के ट्वीट से महाबो थाने में मामला दर्ज होता है. एक आवाज़ जो सिस्टम में ग़लत होने के ख़िलाफ़ उठी थी, ख़ामोश कर दी जाती है. घर पर इंजीनियर और गर्भवती ज्योति पति का इंतज़ार कर रही होती है. पहुंचती है लाश.

राहुल के पिता संजय सिंह बिहार के कैमूर ज़िले में ज़िलास्तर के भाजपा नेता थे. जिनकी 2007 में हत्या हो गई थी. राहुल की हत्या की ख़बर मिलते ही मोहनिया में उनके घर पर बड़े बड़े नेताओं का आना शुरू होता है. हम यह आपको इसलिए बता रहे हैं कि संपर्क होने या राजनीतिक रूप से महत्वपूर्ण होने पर भी यह सिस्टम आपका साथ देगा, आप दावा नहीं कर सकते हैं. राहुल के घर पर मातमपुरसी के लिए जदयु के एमएलसी अवधेश नारायण सिंह, भाजपा विधायक निरंजन राम, मधेपुरा सांसद पप्पू यादव, सासाराम से भाजपा सांसद छेदी पासवान, आस-पास के ज़िलों के कई नेताओं का राहुल के घर पर आना जाना होता है.

इसके बाद भी आज तक इस घटना में एक भी गिरफ्तारी नहीं हुई है. 1 दिसंबर को माननीय सुप्रीम कोर्ट के मुख्य न्यायाधीश दीपक मिश्रा की बेंच ने आदेश दिया कि केंद्र सरकार, राज्य सरकार, रेलवे और सीबीआई से दस हफ्ते के भीतर रिपोर्ट जमा करें और बतायें कि क्या क्या हुआ है. वकील राजीव दत्ता ने रेलवे यात्रियों की सुरक्षा के संदर्भ में इस मामले का ज़िक्र किया तो अदालत ने संवेदनशीलता दिखाते हुए आदेश कर दिया. यह अच्छी बात है लेकिन क्या हर मामले का इंसाफ सुप्रीम कोर्ट में ही मिलेगा, फिर रेलवे पुलिस और यूपी पुलिस किस लिए हैं. ज्योति अब अपने दूधमुंहे बच्चे को लेकर मंत्री मंत्री दिल्ली पटना घूमते रहती है कुछ जांच हो जाए, कुछ न्याय मिल जाए. इस दरबदर के अनुभव में उसे टीवी पर तीन साल से चल रहे हिन्दू मुस्लिम डिबेट से कुछ लाभ नहीं हुआ. बीजेपी के नेताओं के घर आने और आश्वासन से भी कुछ लाभ नहीं हुआ.

ऐसा नहीं है कि इस मीडिया ने इस ख़बर को नहीं छापा. टीवी ने नहीं दिखाया. सबने दिखाया और छापा मगर कुछ नहीं हुआ. राहुल के दोस्तों ने फ्रेंड्स ऑफ राहुल बना लिया. राहुल का बड़ा भाई प्रिंस सिंह भी ज्योति को लेकर मंत्रियों और मीडिया से मिलने लगा. फोन पर हुई बातचीत में जब मैंने उसे किस संदर्भ में कहा कि तुम्हें ऐसा करना चाहिए तो जवाब आया कि सर मैं छोटा सा बच्चा हूं. मेरी उम्र 28 साल है. हम इतना सब नहीं जानते हैं. बस भैया को मारने वाला पकड़ा नहीं गया. पत्नी ज्योति टाटा कंसलटेंसी में सॉफ्टवेयर इंजीनियर है. ज्योति भी डेढ़ महीने के बेटे को लेकर दिल्ली आई थी. सच कहता हूं, मेरी इनसे मिलने की हिम्मत नहीं हुई. फ्रैंड्स ऑफ राहुल ने अगस्त में हत्या के बाद धरना प्रदर्शन किया, कैंडल मार्च किया, रेल चक्का जाम किया मगर इन्हें इंसाफ नहीं मिला है. दोस्तों का दावा है कि ये सब मिलाकर 50 प्रदर्शन किए हैं मगर इंसाफ नहीं मिला. इसलिए आप यह नहीं कह सकते कि इनके दोस्तों ने या ज्योति ने कोशिश नहीं की. पचास प्रदर्शन. इतने में तो प्रधानमंत्री को मोहनिया पहुंच जाना चाहिए था. पर ख़ैर 27 अगस्त को मोहनिया में कैंडल मार्च, 30 अगस्त को बनारस, 2 सितंबर को रोहतास, 6 सितंबर को सहरसा, 10 सितंबर को दिल्ली जंतर मंतर, 18 सितंबर को पटना, 12 अक्टूबर को झांसी, 22 अक्तूबर को वाराणसी, 6 नवंबर को बक्सर में रेल चक्का जाम, 9 नवंबर को भभुआ रोड स्टेशन पर रेल चक्का जाम, हाईवे जाम, सितंबर में आरा में कैंडल मार्च किया. कुछ शहरों में कई बार धरना प्रदर्शन और कैंडल मार्च किया गया है.

तो आपने देखा कि मीडिया में भी छपा, धरना प्रदर्शन भी किया, नेता घर पर भी आए और मंत्रियों और सांसदों ने जांच और गिरफ्तारी को लेकर पत्र भी लिखे हैं. केंद्रीय मंत्री राम कृपाल यादव ने गृहमंत्री राजनाथ सिंह को पत्र लिखा है, सांसद छेदी पासवान ने उत्तर प्रदेश के मुख्यमंत्री योगी आदित्यनाथ को पत्र लिखा है. ज्योति, प्रिंस और राहुल के दोस्तों का कहना है कि करीब 20 मंत्रियों के यहां मुलाकात के लिए गए. दो-दो घंटे इंतज़ार किया, मिले भी मगर एक ग्लास पानी और आश्वासन के अलावा कुछ नहीं मिला. मैं चाहता हूं कि आप बहस से देश को मत समझिए, सिस्टम से समझिए, क्या इस सिस्टम में किसी राहुल के कोई गुंज़ाइश है. क्या उसे पेशेवर तरीके से इंसाफ मिल सकता है.

  • मुख्यमंत्री योगी आदित्यनाथ से दो बार मुलाकात की.
  • रेल मंत्री पीयूष गोयल से 16 अक्बूतर को मुलाकात की.
  • गृहमंत्री राजनाथ सिंह से तीन बार मुलाकात की.
  • विदेश राज्य मंत्री वी के सिंह से एक बार मुलाकात की.
  • संचार मंत्री मनोज सिन्हा से दो तीन बार बार मुलाकात की.
  • स्वास्थ्य राज्य मंत्री अश्विनी चौबे से एक बार मुलाकात की.
  • मंत्री बनने के पहले सांसद आर के सिन्हा से एक बार मुलाकात की.
  • केदीय मंत्री रामकृपाल यादव से दो बार मुलाकात की.
  • मानव संसाधन राज्य मंत्री उपेंद्र कुशवाहा से दो बार मुलाकात की.
  • केंद्रीय मंत्री गिरिराज सिंह से एक बार मुलाकात की है.
  • कृषि मंत्री राधामोहन सिंह से एक बार मुलाकात की है.
  • सांसद छेटी पासवान से कई बार मुलाकात की है.
  • भाजपा सांसद मनोज तिवारी से दो बार मुलाकात हुई.
  • बक्सर के कांग्रेस नेता मुन्ना तिवारी से एक बार मिले हैं.
  • नीतीश कुमार से मुलाकात का प्रयास किया मगर वक्त नहीं मिला.

इतनी लंबी लिस्ट इसलिए आपके सामने पढ़ी ताकि आप समझ सकें कि सिस्टम किसका है. भाजपा नेता के बेटे की हत्या होती है, उसके लिए इंसाफ़ मांगने की लड़ाई कितनी लंबी और मुश्किल है जबकि हर जगह भाजपा की ही सरकार है. तो आप क्या समझे, सरकार अपनी होने से जल्दी इंसाफ नहीं मिल जाता है. इसलिए सरकार नहीं सिस्टम की बात कीजिए, क्योंकि सिस्टम संविधान से नहीं चलेगा, सबके लिए बराबरी से नहीं चलेगा तो आप भाजपा नेता के रिश्तेदार होकर भी सुरक्षित नहीं हैं.

ज्योति सिंह की क्या ही उम्र होगी, डेढ़ महीने के बच्चे को लेकर दरबदर भटकर रही इस नौजवान महिला को सिस्टम ने क्या अनुभव दिया है. यह सवाल पूछ दूंगा तो टीवी पर आने वाले बकवास प्रवक्ताओं की बोलती बंद हो जाएगी. इन बकवास प्रवक्ताओं से पीछा छुड़ा लीजिए वरना दस साल बाद आप मुझे बहुत याद करेंगे कि किसी ने समय रहते बताया था. भाजपा नेता का परिवार होने से राहुल की पत्नी ज्योति को इतना ही लाभ हुआ कि उसकी मुलाकात मुख्यमंत्री से लेकर कई मंत्रियों से हो गई, मगर कोई गिरफ्तार नहीं हुआ. उस वक्त चंबल एक्सप्रेस की बोगी नंबर एस टू में कौन टीटी गया था, आरपीएफ के कौन जवान गए थे, क्यों गिरफ्तार नहीं हुए, क्या पूछताछ नहीं हुई, हमारे पास आरपीएफ का पक्ष नहीं है. यह जनसुनवाई है. पहले लोग बोलेंगे फिर सिस्टम बोलेगा तो हम दिखा देंगे. यहां से वहां तक भटकना इतना आसान नहीं होता है. वक्त लगता है, जीवन की पूंजी लग जाती है, पैसा लगता है. आप ज्योति के अनुभवों से खुद को जोड़ कर देखिए फिर प्राइम टाइम बदल कर किसी और चैनल पर हिन्दू मुस्लिम बहस देखने जा सकते हैं.

राहुल का परिवार ठीक-ठाक है तो पैसा झेल गया मगर कब तक झेलेगा. बात पैसे की भी होती है, लेकिन सोचिए इस लड़के के दोस्तों को, पत्नी को, उसके भाई को हमारे मुल्क का अंधेरा कितना गहरा लगा होगा. इन्होंने फोन पर बातचीत में जिन शब्दों का इस्तेमाल किया है यहां नहीं कर सकता मगर उन शब्दों में एक आम आदमी के टूटन की आवाज़ सुनाई देती है. इस परिवार के करीबी और मुहंबोले मामा हैं राजें सिंह. इतने करीबी की राहुल की शादी के कार्ड पर निमंत्रक की जगह उनका भी नाम छपा है. आरएसएस के बड़े लोकप्रिय कार्यकर्ता हैं. बड़ी पैठ है, इस वक्त बिहार भाजपा में महामंत्री भी हैं. राजें सिंह ने भी कई लोगों से बात की, कई लोगों के पास इन्हें लेकर गए मगर वो भी अपने जैसे कार्यकर्ताओं की मेहनत से सींची गई सरकार से इंसाफ नहीं दिला सके.

राहुल इन्हें मामा कहता था, मामा अपनी ममियाउत बहु यानी भांजे की पत्नी ज्योति से कैसे नज़र मिलाता होगा. बिहार विधान सभा चुनाव के समय मैं ख़ुद राजें सिंह का चुनाव कवर करने गया था. राजेंद सिंह दिनारा से लड़ रहे थे. उनके प्रचार के लिए झारखंड से अनगिनत विधायक मंत्री आए थे, कहा जा रहा था कि भाजपा की सरकार बनी तो राजेंद सिंह मुख्यमंत्री तक हो सकते हैं. एक से एक नेताओं को राजें सिंह के लिए प्रचार करते देखा था. लगता था कि सारी भाजपा दिनारा में ही है. हमने ये तस्वीर आपको इसलिए दिखाई कि पता चले कि राजनीति सिर्फ चुनाव जीतना जानती है, वह अपने लिए चुनाव जीतती है. आपके लिए नहीं वरना इस देश में लोग झूठे मुकदमे के लिए दर दर नहीं भटक रहे होते. कोई इंसाफ के लिए सारे सबूत लेकर भटक नहीं रहा होता. राजें सिंह चुनाव हार गए, मगर बच्चों ने यही बताया कि मामा ने अपनी जानिब बहुत मेहनत की, हर वक्त साथ दिया मगर हम क्या करें, हमें तो इंसाफ नहीं मिला, कोई अरेस्ट नहीं हुआ.

एक इंजीनियर ट्रेन में लोगों से की जा रही अवैध वसूली का वीडिया बनाता है, शायद उसका भरोसा इस वजह से भी रहा होगा कि बीजेपी के कई लोगों तक इस वीडियो को पहुंचा सकता है. मगर मारा जाता है. राहुल अपने पेज पर प्रधानमंत्री की तस्वीरें शेयर करता था, उज्जवला योजना की तस्वीरें शेयर करता था, डिजिटल इंडिया की तस्वीरें शेयर करता था. क्या किसी को इंसाफ तभी मिलेगा जब वह कई मंत्रियों के यहां भटकेगा, टीवी वालों से मिलेगा, सुप्रीम कोर्ट जाएगा. सिस्टम ने आपको निहत्था कर दिया है, आपको पता नहीं चल रहा है, सिस्टम के नहीं होने से ही नेता वोटर को डराता है कि मैं नहीं रहूंगा तो वो आ जाएंगे, वो आ जाएंगे तो फिर से वही सब होगा. आखिर हम ऐसा सिस्टम क्यों नहीं बना पाए कि लोग किसी को थाना मुकदमा में पैरवी के लिए अपना सांसद या अपना मुख्यमंत्री न चुनें. ज्योति ने रेल पर चलना बंद कर दिया है. रोहित और प्रिंस ने जब बताया कि कार से पटना से दिल्ली आए हैं तो यकीन नहीं हुआ.

राहुल एक ईमानदार इंजीनियर और नागरिक था. सिस्टम ने उसके साथ बेईमानी कर दी, आपने यह सवाल कबसे नहीं किया है कि सिस्टम में आम आदमी को बिना किसी भेदभाव के न्याय मिल रहा है या नहीं. राहुल की ज़िंदगी अब नहीं लौट सकेगी, ज्योति का भरोसा क्या हम लौटा सकते हैं, क्या हम उसे फिर से उस रेल में बिठा सकते हैं, जिससे उसके ईमानदार पति को उठाकर फेंक दिया गया. सिस्टम को बचा लीजिए और हो सके तो इस टीवी को जिसका काम सांप्रदायिकता फैलाना रह गया है.

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Andhra Pradesh – Pastor held on sexual exploitation charge #Vaw

Tribal girls complain to mahila panel member

The police detained pastor K.V. Prasad Kumar of Light House Christian Children’s Home at Salur on the charge of sexually exploiting minor tribal school girls who are residing in the home for some time.

The home provides shelter to over 60 poor tribal girls who have enrolled in Mamidipalli Z.P. High School from class 6 to 8.

The issue came to light on Monday when a school teacher enquired about the long absence of a class 8 student for the past one month. And to her dismay, it was found that the girl aborted her foetus.

Member of State Women’s Commission Srivani Koyyana and MLC Gummadi Sandhya Rani visited the home on Tuesday and interacted with the inmates of the home. The girls told them that the pastor and his son had been misbehaving and sexually assaulting the girls for the past couple of years.

Based on their information, Ms. Srivani lodged a complaint with the DSP (SC/ST cell) D. Guru Murty and asked him to investigate thoroughly.

She also directed the Project Officer of ITDA, Parvathipuram, to admit the girls in Tribal Welfare Ashram Schools immediately.


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Malnutrition, sex ratio: Health indices show ‘Gujarat model’ is in a poor shape

While the BJP and Modi rode on the success of the Gujarat model in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, economists have long argued that Gujarat was a relatively well developed state.

Niha Masih
Hindustan Times, Bharuch/ Dahod
A neonatal care ward of a hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.
A neonatal care ward of a hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. (Siddharaj Solanki/HT File Photo)

At the Ankleshwar Industrial Estate in Gujarat’s Bharuch district, Pradeep Patel cannot stop gushing about Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“If it wasn’t for his development work, I would have ended up as a farmer,” says the 39-year-old B.Com graduate working as an accountant at a chemical factory.

The Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC) estate spreads over 1,600 hectares with 1,800 production units — a majority of which are chemical and pharmaceutical factories.

“I recently bought a 4 bedroom house on loan in the city — something I wouldn’t have dreamt of coming from a village,” says Pradeep. Ankleshwar is one of the several industrial hubs that are visible markers of the ‘Gujarat model of development’ and people like Pradeep, its direct beneficiaries.

While the BJP and Modi rode on the success of the Gujarat model in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, economists have long argued that Gujarat was a relatively well developed state when Modi came to power in 2001 and that there is little evidence pointing to an accelerated growth during his tenure.

HT travelled to two diametrically opposite districts — highly industrialised Bharuch and tribal Dahod (neither are outliers) to track the successes and failures of Gujarat.

Pradeep says, under chief minister Modi, first came roads linking his village, and as connectivity improved, so did his prospects. He enrolled into a city college and got a steady job. But data suggests that this may not be the rule. Even in an industrialised district like Bharuch, only one-third workers found jobs for most of the year, according to the 2011 census.

Perception, thus, has played an important role in BJP’s political success. Pradeep admits that some of the work predates Modi — like setting up of the Ankleshwar estate. “Whatever the condition was — good or bad – there was an improvement under Modi,” he says.

The other side

Two hundred kilometres from Ankleshwar, at Devgadh Baria in Dahod district, there is less to show for the state’s economic progress. At the civil hospital, cries of young children fill the child malnutrition treatment centre (CMTC). The centre treats severely malnourished children and gets about 5 new cases every day.

“The problem of malnutrition is so acute that several children who show improvement after our 14-day programme have to come back to repeat the course,” says Tadvi Ajit, a nurse at the centre.

But when it comes to malnutrition, both Dahod and Bharuch show a similar propensity — their figures topping the all-India numbers.

Travelling to the interior villages further reveals the severity of the problem. In Sagtala, 25 km from Devgadh Baria, two of Raveenaben’s four children are malnourished. Her youngest daughter Veena, now three, was diagnosed with severe anaemia when she was barely 6 months old.

At the age of one, Veena was among eight children from the village admitted in the CMTC programme. But her family didn’t complete the 14-day course. Raveenaben had to look after her other children and work in the fields so making the 45-minute daily journey to the city was not possible.

The first point of contact for health services in the village – a sub-centre, was recently constructed but is not functional yet. The anganwadi centre that provides hot meals to children between 3-6 years of age is shut on the day we visit.

The second rung is the primary health centre (PHC) that caters to a cluster of villages. Amongst other things, its field workers are supposed to track and ensure treatment of children suffering from malnutrition.

The day HT visited the nearby PHC, the staff there was leaving for the wedding of the doctor in-charge, in whose absence the pharmacist was treating the patients.

Dileep Mavlankar, director, Indian Institute of Public Health in Gandhinagar, says the problem is systemic.

“If you lose a war will you blame the soldiers or the general? If services are not reaching, the government has to take responsibility. In Gujarat, while there has been an improvement in health indicators since the 60s, there is under-investment and under-management in social sectors like health and education,” he says.

The reduction in malnutrition figures in Gujarat over the last ten years, however, has been slow compared to the all-India average, according to the latest National Family Health Survey.

The disparities remain largely similar at the inter-state level as well. During Modi’s tenure, Gujarat performed well on economic indicators but lagged behind on infant mortality or sex ratio.

Gujarat’s place among states

Rank of the state under CM Narendra Modi according to the Reserve Bank of India

Development economist, Reetika Khera, who teaches at IIT-Delhi, says, “Gujarat is a ‘model’ for what not to do: a good development strategy must not exclusively focus on economic growth at the cost of social investments.”

The political front

The opposition has been on the offensive over the BJP’s “I am development, I am Gujarat” slogan citing the state’s poor social indices. This week, Congress vice-president, Rahul Gandhi questioned Modi over Gujarat’s high malnutrition and infant mortality figures.

Three of the four small factory owners that HT spoke to in Ankleshwar, including a district level BJP office-bearer, admitted there are gaps in the Gujarat story.

“Gujarat was already a developed state when Modi came to power. Ease of doing business only exists on paper. A lot of the credit for development goes to industry owners, not the government,” said one of them, citing grievances like water shortage, cap on expansion of units and high municipal taxes.

They say they will still vote for the BJP but not for its “vikas”. The owner of a chemical plant says, “The one good thing the BJP ensured is the atmosphere of industrial peace.”

Raveenaben, who is a member of a local women’s collective, is similarly disenchanted. This time she will vote for the Congress. “Service delivery has improved but that is not because of the government but due to our own initiatives and struggles.”

And in this commonality between the two ends of the spectrum lies the real Gujarat story.

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Bihar Government orders to sack 80,000 striking contractual heath employees #WTFnews

The Bihar government has ordered for terminating the services of 80,000 health employees who are on strike.


Health employees protesting
Health employees protesting


  • 1
    Bihar govt has ordered for terminating the services of 80,000 health employees.
  • 2
    Employees on strike for the last three days demanding equal pay for equal work.
  • 3
    Health services across the state have crippled because of the strike.

The Bihar government has ordered for terminating the services of 80,000 health employees who have been recruited by the state government on contract.

The government has taken this decision in the wake of the health employees remaining on strike for the last three days demanding equal pay for equal work and regularization of their services.

Health secretary, R.K.Mahajan on Wednesday issued a letter to all the district magistrates and civil surgeons asking them to terminate the services of the striking contractual heath workers and go for fresh recruitment.

“Disciplinary action will be taken against the health workers who have violated the terms of agreement of the contract. Their contract will be terminated for violating terms of agreementof contract”, said health secretary R. K Mahajan’s letter to the DM’s and civil surgeons.

More than 80,000 contractual health workers have gone on indefinite strike since 4th December in support of their demand of equal pay for equal work and regularization of services.

The contractual health workers include health managers, pharmacists, OT assistants, technicians, data operators, paramedic and counsellors. The health services across the state have crippled because of the striking health employees.

The striking health workers who have been protesting at the Gardanibagh area in the state capital for last three days have asserted that they would further intensify their stir and now bow to the pressure tactics of the state govt threatening to terminate their services.

“We will immolate ourselves now if the government did not accept our demand,” said Afroz Alam, a protesting health worker.

The worst affected hospitals because of the ongoing strike of contractual health workers have been the prestigious Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) and Nalanda Medical College and Hospital (NMCH) in Patna where several operations and surgeries have to be cancelled.

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