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Archives for : September2018

ICC ruling on Rohingyas can impact India as well

The decision of the court changes the landscape in relation to international accountability through the ICC. It is a legitimate cause for concern for any state that is not a party to the Rome Statute, and that borders a state party. The court has now set a precedent, which would be wise to heed.

Rashida Begum, a Rohingya refugee woman at the Kutupalong camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, August 24, 2018(REUTERS)

On September 6, 2018, a pretrial chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a decision which has far-reaching consequences. The chamber held that the ICC has jurisdiction over the deportation of Rohingyas, as a crime against humanity.

Deportation and jurisdiction of the court: At the crux of the decision is recognition of the jurisdiction of the court over deportations across an international border, between a state party to the Rome Statute (Bangladesh) and a non-state party (Myanmar). The Rome Statute is the treaty establishing the ICC and states agree to be bound by its provisions when they ratify it. Myanmar argued that the court did not have jurisdiction or the legal standing over allegations of mass atrocities, as it has not ratified the Rome Statute. However, due to the nature of the crime of deportation — which continues upon crossing the border, with elements of the crime occurring in the territory of a state party, Bangladesh — the court held that actions in Myanmar can come under the scanner of the court.

The prosecutor will now determine whether there is sufficient merit to commence a formal investigation. As the Security Council has not referred the matter to the ICC so far, this decision is viewed as a significant step towards justice and accountability. Arguably, though, this does not go far enough as it does not include examination of allegations of other serious crimes.

Impact beyond Myanmar: The decision has wider ramifications for the assertion of jurisdiction of the ICC over a non-state party. Essentially, a country that is not a party to the court may still be investigated in the case of the crimes against humanity of deportation and associated crimes. In relation to the civil war in Syria, given Jordan is a state party and has taken in a mass influx of refugees, proceedings at the ICC may be initiated on the basis of the Myanmar precedent. Similar arguments are also made in relation to US actions at the border with Mexico, relating to the repatriation and detention of migrants. While the US is not a state party, Mexico is.

In India, the process of registration, detention and identification of non-citizens in accordance with the National Register of Citizens continues in Assam, which shares a border with Bangladesh. Should a situation of mass violence and border crossings occur due to the fallout of the NRC — which cannot be ruled out — this decision opens up the potential for an ICC investigation on Indian soil.

Overall, the decision of the court changes the landscape in relation to international accountability through the ICC. It is a legitimate cause for concern for any state that is not a party to the Rome Statute, and that borders a state party. The court has now set a precedent, which would be wise to heed.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/analysis/icc-ruling-on-rohingyas-can-impact-india-as-well/story-4wPIo90MFqIcAfwgXuoXTK.html

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India – Sewage Treatment Plants are emerging as the new killing fields of Manual Scavenging

 

Safaikarmachari Kavulu Samithi-Karnataka, an organisation working towards complete eradication of the caste-based practice of manual scavenging in the State of Karnataka, expresses its outrage at the death of 5 workers – Umesh (22), Raja (22), Pankaj (26), Sarfaraj (19) and Vishal (20) – on account of being made to clean a Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at DLF Capital Greens, a residential complex in Moti Nagar, West Delhi on September 9, 2018. These deaths, which are only the latest in a series of deaths of workers in Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs), were not accidents and were eminently preventable. Concerted action from Union and State governments is urgently required to prevent further loss of lives in STPs.

As environmental regulations under the The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 across the country have mandated treatment of wastewater by large housing complexes, Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) have proliferated across large cities in the country. While making these regulations, no thought has been given to the question of who is going to clean them. Several of these STPs are ill-designed and do not include adequate measures for operation and maintenance. The STP at DLF Capital Greens in Moti Nagar, for example, was either not designed or not maintained properly, otherwise it would not have had untreated human waste producing poisonous gases which asphyxiated the 5 workers. It did not even have stairs for workers to enter and exit. Many of the agencies contracted to operate and maintain these STPs employ casual workers to clean the tanks in violation of Section 7 of The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013, as was the case at DLF Capital Greens in Moti Nagar. Often these workers are Dalits as were some of the workers who died on September 9 at DLF Capital Greens in Moti Nagar. Because of these reasons, STPs are emerging as the new killing fields of manual scavenging after sewer lines, manholes and septic tanks. In the last two years in Benglauru itself, at least 8 workers have been killed in 4 incidents while cleaning STPs. These deaths are NOT accidents and could have been prevented if appropriate regulatory framework for STPs had been put in place by Union and State governments. Safaikarmachari Kavulu Samithi-Karnataka demands following urgent steps from Union and State governments:-

  1. The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013 needs to be amended to explicitly prohibit manual cleaning of Sewage Treatment Plants.
  2. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) should come out with guidelines on design, operation and maintenance of STPs and should formulate a regulatory framework for STPs which should include following features:-

a) Unless the STP design adheres to the prescribed minimum design specifications, the State Boards should not grant Consent for Establishment (CFE) to the developers;
b) b) Similarly, unless an empanelled agency with competence in Operating and Maintaining STPs is employed by the Apartments, Consent for Operation (CFO) should not be granted by the State Boards;
c) The competence of these agencies should be vetted by the State Boards before empanelling them.

To bring justice to the families of the 5 workers, Safaikarmachari Kavulu Samithi-Karnataka demands following actions by the authorities:-

  1. As per media reports, it appears that the FIR in the case has been registered under IPC Sec 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 304A (causing death by negligence); Section 3 (1)(j) of The SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act; and Sections 7,8 and 9 of the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013. Additionally, IPC Sections 336 (Act endangering life or personal safety of others) and 337 (Causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) are also clearly attracted and should be added to the FIR.
  2. Under Section 23 of the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013, “Where an offence under this Act has been committed by a company, every person who, at the time the offence was committed, was in charge of, and was responsible to,the company for the conduct of the business of the company, as well as the company, shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly”. Hence, not only the supervisor, but the proprietors of the private companies responsible for the maintenance of the STP should also be named as accused in the FIR.
  3. A compensation of 10 Lakhs should be provided to the dependents of all the 5 workers in accordance with the directions of the Supreme Court in Safai Karamchari Andolan & Ors. vs. Union of India.
  4. Additionally, a compensation of Rs 4.5 Lakhs under SC/ST Atrocities Act 1989 as amended in 2016 should also be provided to the Dalit victims of this tragedy.

We sincerely hope that Union and State governments will wake up from their slumber now and take all steps including the one suggested above to ensure that no one else will be killed in STPs.

Mr. K B Obalesh
State Convener, Safaikarmachari Kavulu Samithi Karnataka
Email: [email protected]
Ph: +91 97425 86468

Ref:

  1. Letter to Sh. Arvind Kejriwal, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Delhi.
  2. Letter to Sh. Thawarchand Gehlot, Hon’ble Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India.
  3. Letter to Sh. Shri. Manhar Valjibhai Zala, Hon’ble Chairman, National Commission for Safai Karmacharis.

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India -Mother wants CID to probe champ daughter’s suicide

There’s Nothing That Suggests Abetment: Cops

Navi Mumbai:

Seven months ago, champion powerlifter duo from Raigad’s Mangaon taluka, Jyotika Patekar (49) and her daughter Vaibhavi (19), were on cloud nine as Vaibhavi had won a silver medal at the statelevel competition in Nagpur.

Today, Jyotika is a shattered woman who has also stopped her own powerlifting practice sessions. Her daughter committed suicide by drowning in a local pond at Goregaon in Mangaon taluka recently as she was reportedly upset that her college did not promote her after she failed in four subjects in FYBA.

The mother has now demanded a CID inquiry into Vaibhavi’s suicide. “I strongly feel her college principal’s insensitive behavior led to her death,” Jyotika alleged.

In January 2017, TOI had written about this unique mother-daughter combine that was locally famous as the ‘Dangal Team’ after the 2016 Bollywood film.

Jyotika said that on August 9 this year, she had gone with Vaibhavi to the office of principal P V Pimplapure of Doshi Vakil Arts College and G.C.U.B. Science and Commerce College in Goregaon to request him to allow Vaibhavi to go to the next class. “But the principal gave us the example of another girl student who had threatened to commit suicide if she was declared as ‘failed’. This remark had a deep impact on my daughter who started clutching my arm. I replied to Pimplapure that we were not there to threaten him, but only to request the college to allow Vaibhavi to keep terms while she moves on to second-year degree college,” the mother recalled.

She pacified Vaibhavi, she said, and told her not to worry about her poor academic results and to continue being positive and pursue both sports and studies. “She would nod her head and smile at me and her siblings. But on the night of August 27, she walked out of the house quietly and drowned herself in the pond nearby. She left behind an SMS with her friend that she was ‘going’ as she was not good at academics or sports. Her body was found by police after 24 hours at the pond,” Jyotika said.

Principal Pimplapure denied making any insensitive remarks to Vaibhavi or her mother. He told TOI: “A few days before her suicide, Vaibhavi and her mother did come to meet me in college. But I only told them that since she had failed in four subjects, she could not be promoted as per university rules. I did not mention any other girl candidate’s case of threatening to commit suicide. I was not rude to them.”

Officials at Goregaon police station told TOI that at present, they have lodged an ADR (accidental death report) in Vaibhavi’s death. “During our inquiry, the principal denied being rude to Vaibhavi and her mother. We did not find anything that suggested abetment. The college was merely following university rules,” said investigating officer, ASI RD Dhobale. But Jyotika, who stuck to her version of the meeting, said she would fight for justice. “My daughter had a promising sports career ahead. I want a CID probe as I do not want any other student to suffer,” she said.

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Attacked by father for marrying Dalit man, Madhavi battles for life in Hyd hospital

Madhavi is critical in a hospital, while Sandeep is also injured. Her father, who allegedly attacked them, is absconding.

A couple is sitting on a two-wheeler that is parked on a busy main road in Hyderabad’s Erragada main road. A man wearing a helmet pulls up next to them and parks his bike right next to them.

The man is seen getting down from the two-wheeler, he removes his helmet and then pulls out a sickle from his bag. He then proceeds to ruthlessly attack the young man, who is sitting on a bike with his wife. The attacker slashes the young man, as the woman then pulls the attacker down on to the ground. He then attacks the woman. As other bystanders attempt to intervene, the attacker threatens them with his sickle before slashing the woman again. At one point, a bystander kicks the attacker, who then walks out of the frame, as the young woman sits up.

This was the scene that played out in the heart of Hyderabad city around 3.30 pm on Wednesday and was caught on CCTV cameras. Madhavi (20) and Sandeep Didla (21), a couple (both students) who got married in a temple exactly a week ago have been hospitalised. The key suspect in the case, according to the police, is Madhavi’s father Manohar Chari, a goldsmith by profession. The incident took place under the jurisdiction of the SR Nagar police near Gokul theatre. Manohar Chari is absconding after the attack.

While Sandeep suffered a deep cut on his face and is getting treated at the Neelima hospital, Madhavi remains critical and has been shifted to Yashoda hospital. Sandeep is out of danger, according to the police.

Madhavi, who hails from the Viswabrahmin community, met Sandeep, a Dalit man, five years ago, while they were both in school. According to friends, he is doing his final year of B.Com from the Vivekananda College, while she is studying in the Hindu college in the city.

A friend of the couple at the hospital told TNM that they had gotten married just a week ago at a temple in Hyderabad. Reportedly, the girl’s father asked the couple to meet them at Erragada, Gokul Theatre.

Speaking to TNM, ACP Vijay Kumar said, “The man is out of danger, the woman is critical. She is seriously injured on her neck and her hand. Three teams have been formed to nab the culprit.”

“We are still scanning the CCTV cameras,” he added. The ACP said that according to eyewitnesses, Madhavi’s father was drunk.

The ACP also confirmed that her family had approached the police against the relationship, and the police had counselled them first at the Sanath Nagar then at the SR Nagar police stations. “Her father asked her to come back to the family, but she rejected this. Her family then agreed to their wedding,” he said.

Speaking to the media, Sandeep’s brother Madhu said, “One week ago, her parents and Sandeep had gone to Sanathnagar Police Station for talks. The police intervened and counselled her father. His main concern was that my brother was from a different caste. He kept bringing it up and was not ready to compromise. Later, the police spoke to him and finally, he seemed reconciled to the situation. It looks like he was acting and was not really okay with them getting married.”

“I had attended their wedding, they had called me all of a sudden and told us that they were getting married. We were surprised,” said Shravan Goud a college friend of Sandeep. According to his friends, Madhavi’s father had been coming to Sandeep’s house since September 15 and telling the family that they should take care of his daughter. The families had been called to the SR Nagar police station for counselling but Madhavi’s father had raised no objection then, according to Sandeep’s friends.

Gory visuals of the crime scene after the incident, showed the woman screaming in pain on a busy road, even as onlookers watched.

A case of attempt to murder has been registered by the police.

https://www.thenewsminute.com/article/attacked-father-marrying-dalit-man-madhavi-battles-life-hyd-hospital-88637

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Vishnu Khare (1940–2018) Adieu, dear poet #RIP

As it happens, the news was conveyed by a terse ping on a Hindi literature group on WhatsApp. Newly appointed vice chairman of the Delhi Hindi Academy and noted Hindi poet Vishnu Khare was no more. He was 78.

I was to meet him for my Mumbai Mirror column at his Andheri home. He was looking forward to my visit and had said, “A good journalist must upset both sides. And literature should be fertilised with journalism — and journalists must read high theory so that they can upset their readers and trouble those who are in power.” The meeting did not happen.

A child of Chhindwara, Madhya Pradesh, and an MA in English literature, he translated TS Eliot’s poems into Hindi. “In May 1960, I translated the poem and wrote to Eliot’s publisher in England. They informed me that an Indian publisher from Orissa owned the copyright in all the Indian languages. So, I wrote to the Indian publisher who was delighted. Next I wrote a letter to Jawaharlal Nehru. I told him since you quoted Eliot in 1922, I think you must write the preface. His office replied that the PM was a bit busy with the monsoon session in Parliament but the letter has been passed on to Dinkar and Humayun Kabir,” he said. That’s how Ramdhari Singh Dinkar wrote a preface in Hindi for “a chit of a boy”.

As a 13-year-old, the wordsmith in him was chiselled by Maxim Gorky, Krishan Chander, Saadat Hasan Manto, Rajinder Bedi and Premchand. He said, “When I read these mind-makers, I knew what I had to write.”

Our last meeting was a year ago at a function to award Antarbharati’s Balshastri Jambhekar award to Balwant Jeurkar for translating Premchand’s biography Kalam Ke Sipahi into Marathi. Khare delivered a succinct, contrarian speech about the unreliability of Kalam Ke Sipahi as historical truth. It was brutal, and perhaps inappropriate, for an evening of celebration. But Khare did not care. “Sahityakaari ne sahitya ko maar daala hai,” he firmly believed.

During a programme I hosted along with Max Mueller Bhavan, he dissected Mumbai though the lens of literature. He said, “The Urdu writers came to Bombay to write for the films. And wrote the most brazen things about Bombay. Authors like Manto, Premchandra, Bedi, seem to be the pioneers who introduced Urdu to Bombay and Bombay to Urdu. It was through Urdu that Hindi had access to the city.”

Vishnu Khare gifted me three books in Hindi. One was Murdaghar by Jagdamba Prasad Dixit, penned in the 1970s. A brutal novel with 700 profane words. Then there were Manohar Shyam Joshi’s Kuru-Kuru Swaha and Hamzaad. He said, “Hamzaad is the darkest novel about Mumbai. It is completely bleak, has no ideals, no hope and no optimism. Joshi rips the facade of a modern city to shreds.”

During an evening to commemorate the contribution of Shani (the Muslim who wrote in Hindi, as Khare irreverently stated), Kedarnath, who passed away a few months ago, handed over the mike to Khare, joking that there are two things one must be aware of: pareshaani and Khare-shani. Khare grinned and was silent.

 

In that silence we heard the echo of: Kaho Toh Daro Ki Hai Yeh Kyon Keh Diya / Na Kaho Toh Daro Ki Poochenge Chupp Kyon Ho!

  कहो तो डरो…

कहो तो डरो कि हाय यह क्यों कह दिया
न कहो तो डरो कि पूछेंगे चुप क्यों हो

सुनो तो डरो कि अपना कान क्यों दिया
न सुनो तो डरो कि सुनना लाजिमी तो नहीं था

देखो तो डरो कि एक दिन तुम पर भी यह न हो
न देखो तो डरो कि गवाही में बयान क्या दोगे

सोचो तो डरो कि वह चेहरे पर न झलक आया हो
न सोचो तो डरो कि सोचने को कुछ दे न दें

पढ़ो तो डरो कि पीछे से झाँकने वाला कौन है
न पढ़ो तो डरो कि तलाशेंगे क्या पढ़ते हो

लिखो तो डरो कि उसके कई मतलब लग सकते हैं
न लिखो तो डरो कि नई इबारत सिखाई जाएगी

डरो तो डरो कि कहेंगे डर किस बात का है
न डरो तो डरो कि हुक़्म होगा कि डर

 

 

 

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Even FIR in Sohrabuddin case fake: Gujarat CID officer

Ex-DySP, in his deposition, gives court details of his investigation in the case

The chief investigating officer of the Gujarat Criminal Investigation Department (CID), which had called the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter ‘fake’, told the Special CBI Court on Wednesday that not only the encounter, but also the first information report (FIR) lodged by the Gujarat Police officers was fake.

Gambhir Singh Paderia, retired deputy superintendent of police of Gujarat CID, while deposing before the court of Judge SJ Sharma, gave the details of how he had conducted the investigation and recorded statements of various witnesses as well as accused in 2007.

He also produced various documents related to the investigation carried out by him – panchnamas of the spot from where Sohrabuddin and his wife Kauser Bi were allegedly abducted, Sohrabuddin’s encounter spot, where they were kept, and where Kauser Bi was burnt after being killed.

Giving details of the investigation, Paderia told the court that he had formed teams which went to various places and met different witnesses in the case. He told the court that he went to Hyderabad along with another officer and recorded the statement of an IPS officer who had confirmed a meeting with the accused IPS officer RK Pandiyan – who has now been discharged in the case – before the encounter. He also told the court that he had recorded statements of witnesses connected to the abduction and transportation of Sohrabuddin and Kauser Bi.

Most of these witnesses, however, have turned hostile during the trial.

During his cross-examination by advocate Wahab Khan, Paderia told the court that he did not collect any forensic evidence from any of the spots. He also said that he did not know why the CID made four people witnesses in the case about whom he had sought permission to be made accused, after he left case due to health reasons.

Sohrabuddin, a suspected gangster, was killed in an alleged fake encounter by the Gujarat Police in November 2005. His wife Kausar Bi was also allegedly killed.

Tulsi Prajapati, an aide of Shaikh who was said to be a witness to the encounter, was allegedly killed by police at Chapri in Gujarat’s Banaskantha district in December 2006.

Kausar Bi and Sohrabuddin

MUMBAI MIRROR

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Reclaiming our Heritage: Music has No Religion

Statement condemning the attack on classical musical expression in south India #FOE

Voices from across the civil society come together to condemn the harassment of Carnatic Musicians T M Krishna, O S Arun and Nithyasree Mahadevan

New Delhi, Sept. 20, 2018

In a shocking development affecting the acclaimed musicians of the carnatic tradition, it has come to light that artistes like T M Krishna, O S Arun and Nithyasree Mahadevan have been harangued by some fringe groups in India and the US for performing songs on Christian or supposedly non-Hindu themes. 

It has been reported that many musicians have received threats by right wing Hindu organisations, for bringing people and religions together on a musical platform. Some of them have been bullied into making apologies and cancelling concerts. O. S. Arun was invited by T. Samuel Joseph, a long time student and teacher of Carnatic music to render Carnatic compositions on Christ. Arun was attacked online and pressure was put on him to cancel. Within days, WhatsApp and social media clippings of Nithyasree Mahadevan rendering a Christian song also began circulating with comments to establish disapproval. Reportedly, the SSVT Temple in Washington DC which had invited T.M.Krishna to sing, cancelled the invitation at the behest of self-appointed Hindu gatekeepers.

A statement condemning these attacks and asserting the freedom of speech, expression and religion of all these musicians (and the aficionados of their music) signed by about 200 eminent citizens has been released today. The statement initiated by Ashok Vajpeyi and Aruna Roy has been signed by former judges Justice A P Shah and Justice K Chandru and several senior personalities from the arts and culture fraternity. Girish Karnad, Shyam Benegal, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Anand Patwardhan, Leela Samson, Shubha Mudgal, Malavika Sarukkai, Mallika Sarabhai, and Tripurari Sharma also figure among the signatories.

The statement endorsed by Romila Thapar, Amit Bhaduri, Rajmohan Gandhi, Ashish Nandy, Ramachandra Guha, Shiv Visvanathan, Mukul Kesavan, Syeda Hameed, Abha Sur, Prabhat Patnaik, Jayati Ghosh and several former diplomats, senior bureaucrats and lawyers like Indira Jaising and Prashant Bhushan says, “We, the undersigned, register our strong protest and condemn this continual harassment, intimidation and the use of other undemocratic methods to silence voices. These are expressions of creativity, unity, humanity which are helping shape the building of a modern syncretic tradition in Indian classical music.”

                            

It is worth noting that the Tamil writer who was harassed by cultural fundamentalists for his novel Madhurobhagan (One Part Woman) and whose verses have been sung by T M Krishna has also signed the statement that says – “We cannot allow the intimidation and threat of violence by a (small) group which arrogates to itself, the role of being the keeper of culture, tradition and heritage.”

 

Musician T. M. Krishna defying all these attempts to coerce him, said: “Considering the vile comments and threats issued by many on social media regarding Carnatic compositions on Jesus, I announce here that I will be releasing one Carnatic song every month on Jesus or Allah.”

 

The statement ends with an appeal to all Indians to join hands and stand up against this cultural dictatorship that is being attempted to be established. It says, “We reassert the universal truth that music is not and cannot be denominational, and an exclusive domain of any one religion. All music is open to participation to people of all communities, and musical heritage belongs to humanity. We condemn the nascent attempts to limit and stifle free expression and invite you to join in voicing your protest.”

 

STATEMENT

 

In a recent occurrence in South India, eminent classical musicians have been
intimidated, their concert engagements cancelled, due to pressure from intolerant forces
that claim to speak on behalf of Hindus; thereby seeking to dictate the content and
nature of cultural performances and music. We, the undersigned, register our strong
protest and condemn this continual harassment, intimidation and the use of other
undemocratic methods to silence voices. These are expressions of creativity, unity,
humanity which are helping shape the building of a modern syncretic tradition in Indian
classical music.

In the climate of social policing and restrictions on writers, thinkers and artists, the
recent attacks on Carnatic musicians of repute, has again raised the sceptre of fear. This
reflects the failure of the rule of law and constitutional guarantees. It is alarming that
neither independent institutions such as the courts nor the governments whose duty it is
to protect democratic space and freedom of expression, have stepped in to take decisive
steps to end this menace.

 

It therefore falls upon artists, civil society groups and citizens to come forward and
protect the democratic and constitutional right to creative expression. We cannot allow
the intimidation and threat of violence by a (small) group which arrogates to itself, the
role of being the keeper of culture, tradition and heritage. This has largely gone
unchallenged by the rest of civil society, except by some musicians themselves.
Music is an expression of the universal truth of harmony of existence and connects
people through its appreciation. It has the capacity to be understood and bring together
people across boundaries. It underscores the cross-cutting links amongst religions,
blending the plurality into the oneness of sound and its appeal to all human beings and
has reinforced beliefs in plurality and tolerance. While the content and the lyrics bring
in the varied perceptions and understanding of people and communities, music
establishes the universality of a multi-cultural society.

 

Carnatic music is a system of classical music which over the centuries has absorbed the
cultural milieu of contemporary times and while the compositions were composed in the
classical style, they celebrated differing perceptions of divinity. While the majority
religion and its composers have predominantly occupied musical space, there have been
composers whose lyrics have been in praise of different religious denominations. That is
how it should be.

 

Many musicians have received threats by right wing Hindu organisations, for bringing
people and religions together on a musical platform. Some of them have been bullied
into making apologies and cancelling concerts. O. S. Arun was invited by T. Samuel
Joseph a long time student and teacher of Carnatic music to render Carnatic
compositions on Christ. H e was attacked online and pressure was put on him to cancel.
He cancelled citing personal reasons. Within days, WhatsApp and social media clippings
of Nithyasree Mahadevan rendering a Christian song began circulating with comments
to establish disapproval. The SSVT Temple in Washington DC which had invited
T.M.Krishna to sing, cancelled the invitation at the behest of self-appointed Hindu
gatekeepers.

 

T. M. Krishna in a statement said: ” Considering the vile comments and threats issued by
many on social media regarding Carnatic compositions on Jesus, I announce here that I
will be releasing one Carnatic song every month on Jesus or Allah”.

We want to express our support and appreciation for the very positive efforts of these
musicians and register our protest against stigmatising them. We reassert the universal
truth that music is not and cannot be denominational, and an exclusive domain of any
one religion. All music is open to participation to people of all communities, and musical
heritage belongs to humanity. We condemn the nascent attempts to limit and stifle free
expression and invite you to join in voicing your protest.

 

  1. Ashok Vajpeyi
  2. Aruna Roy
  3. Justice A P Shah
  4. Justice K Chandru
  5. Shyam Benegal
  6. Girish Karnad
  7. Adoor Gopalakrishnan
  8. Anand Patwardhan
  9. Rajmohan Gandhi
  10. Devaki Jain
  11. Romila Thapar
  12. Mallika Sarabhai
  13. Leela Samson
  14. Shubha Mudgal
  15. Kiran Seth
  16. Tripurari Sharma
  17. Ram Rahman
  18. Malavika Sarukkai
  19. Charul Bharwada
    20.Vinay Mahajan
  20. Prabhat Patnaik
  21. Jayati Ghosh
  22. Anand Teltumbde
  23. Satish Deshpande
  24. Abha Sur
  25. Amit Bhaduri
  26. Zoya Hasan
    28.Ashish Nandy
  27. Perumal Murugan
    30.Ramachandra Guha
  28. Shiv Visvanathan
  29. Syeda Hameed
  30. Indira Jaising
  31. Prashant Bhushan
  32. Shantha Sinha
  33. N C Saxena
  34. Wajahat Habibullah
    38.Julio Ribeiro
  35. John Dayal
    40.Maj Gen S.G. Vombatkere
  36. Namita Gokhale
  37. Abha Bhaiya
  38. Mukul Kesavan
  39. Babu Mathew
  40. Somasundar Burra
  41. Jagdeep Chhokar
  42. Devasahayam MG
    48.Shabnam Hashmi
  43. Bezwada Wilson
    50.Harsh Mander
  44. Medha Patkar
  45. Henri Tiphagne
  46. Dunu Roy
  47. A K Shivakumar
  48. Shekhar Singh
  49. Swami Agnivesh
  50. Kamla Bhasin
  51. Teesta Setalvad
  52. Rudrangshu Mukherjee
    60.P Sainath
  53. Rosamma Thomas
  54. Pamela Phillipose
  55. Keshav Desiraju
  56. S Parasuraman
  57. Mary E John
  58. Bela Bhatia
  59. Irfan Engineer
    68.Nityanand Jayaraman
  60. Lakshmi Krishnamurthy
  61. S. Anandalakshmy
  62. Vasanth Kannabiran
  63. Imrana Qadeer
  64. Nareshwar Dayal
  65. Ashok Kumar Sharma
  66. Uma Pillai
  67. Kamal Jaswal
  68. Uzramma
  69. Dipali Taneja
  70. Anjana Mangalagiri
    80.Brijesh Kumar
  71. Anjali Banerji
    82.Radha Gopalan
    83.Ishrat Aziz
    84.Nagal Samy
  72. Niranjan Pant
    86.Ashok Sharma
  73. C Balakrishnan
    88.Dr. M A Ibrahimi
    89.S. Y. Quraishi
    90.Fabian KP
  74. Abhijit Sengupta
  75. Deepak Sanan
  76. Nilanjan Hajra
  77. Vinoo Bhagat
  78. Rajni Bakshi
  79. Alok Perti
  80. Bhanumathi Sharma
    98.Arani Roy
  81. Mamta Jaitly
  82. Rekha Bezboruah
  83. Nisha Malhotra
  84. Jyothi Krishnan
  85. D K Manavalan
  86. P Bhattacharya
  87. V Ramani
  88. Salahuddin Ahmad
  89. Hirak Ghosh
  90. M B Pranesh
  91. Lakshmi Pranesh
  92. Shanti Kakar
  93. Geetha Thoopal
  94. Vibha Puri Das
  95. Ardhendu Sen
  96. Madhu Bhaduri
  97. S P Ambrose
  98. Arun Kumar
  99. Sushil Tripathi
  100. Ravi Budhiraja
  101. Narendra Sisodia
  102. Vineeta Rai
  103. Anna Dani
  104. Vappala Balachandran
  105. Amitabha Pande
  106. Lalit Mathur
  107. Kalyani Chaudhuri
  108. EAS Sarma
  109. Aftab Seth
  110. Nitin Desai
  111. Deb Mukharji
  112. K.R. Venugopal
  113. Noor Mohammad
  114. Subodh Lal
  115. Shivshankar Menon
  116. Trilochan Singh
  117. Sanjivi Sundar
  118. Pranab Mukhopadhyay
  119. Gopalan Balagopal
  120. Meenakshisundaram SS
  121. Aditi Mehta
  122. Meena Gupta
  123. Sujatha Rao
  124. Umrao Salodia
  125. Dr. Raju Sharma
  126. Ravi Vira Gupta
  127. Anita Agnihotri
  128. Vikram Vyas
  129. Basant Hetamsaria
  130. Arundhati Dhuru
  131. Gabriele Dietrich
  132. Krishnakant Chauhan
  133. Kamayani Bali Mahabal
  134. Poonam Muttreja
  135. M Y Rao
  136. Ananya Vajpeyi
  137. Hindal Tyabji
  138. M N Roy
  139. A. Selvaraj
  140. Suhas Kolhekar
  141. Ramesh Gangolli
  142. Moyukh Chatterjee
  143. Anand Murugesan
  144. Devram Kanera
  145. Dipak Roy
  146. N K Raghupati
  147. Samantha Agarwal
  148. Ahona Palchoudhuri
  149. Lekha Bhagat
  150. Durgesh Solanki
  151. Sidharth Rattan
  152. Purnima Singh
  153. Paras Banjara
  154. Nachiket Udupa
  155. Swarna Rajagopalan
  156. Anant Nath
  157. Sumita Mehta

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BBC calls out Mohandas Pai’s fake news on Congress party

Former Infosys executive faces condemnation from journalists

Former Infosys director Mohandas Pai has earned quite a notoriety as a fanboy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on social media in the last few years. He appears to spend more time on promoting the violent right-wing Hindutva ideology on Twitter than positively influencing his followers by drawing from his past experiences as someone who’s worked at a fairly senior position in one of India’s most successful IT companies.

Mohandas Pai

Such is his love for Modi and the RSS that on Monday, Pai resorted to fake news in a bid to defame a political rival of the BJP, the Congress party. Sharing a link of a fake website bbcnewshub.com, Mohandas Pai wrote, “Shocking list. One Indian political party included.”

He was referring to the Congress party since the fake website had listed it in the world’s top ten most corrupt parties category. The list by the fake website in question had included the Congress as the second most corrupt party along with outfits like the Nazi Party, Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz and National Fascist Party among others.

Pai’s attempt to peddle fake news angered several journalists, who instantly called out his lie. But he remained unfazed and continued to justify his act. When journalist Swati Chaturvedi wrote that the former Infosys executive had ‘just “met” a fake news site,’ he launched a personal attack against her calling her names.

He remained stubborn even when a BBC employee pointed out that Pai was sharing a link from a parody website. BBC journalist Trushar Barot wrote, “Hi Mohandas, I work at the BBC. Please can you delete your original tweet? Otherwise it will continue to spread, which I’m sure is not your intention.”

To which Pai replied without any sense of remorse, “Why don’t you officially deny this and say that you have nothing to do with the address? It is your responsibility to look after your brand! Even you publish wrong news and people protest you just do not care too.”

Pai’s wish was granted as the BBC Press team soon issued an official statement leaving the former red-faced. This perhaps led him to delete his embarrassing tweet. The tweet by BBC News Press Team read, “To be clear, as @timesofindia points out, ‘BBC News Hub’ is not a BBC site. It is an imitation site which is not in any way affiliated to the #BBC http://toi.in/hhXdVY/a24gk #india”

BBC News Press Team

@BBCNewsPR

To be clear, as @timesofindia points out, ‘BBC News Hub’ is not a BBC site. It is an imitation site which is not in any way affiliated to the http://toi.in/hhXdVY/a24gk 

FAKE ALERT: Surveys declaring PM Modi, Congress corrupt are fake – Times of India

News News: Mohandas Pai tweeted an article published on BBC News Hub that listed Indian National Congress as one of the most corrupt political parties in the wor

timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Several users detected mischief in Pai’s action since bbcnewshub’s fake story had created similar confusion last year in March. Several fact-check websites had established that the news being propagated by bbcnewshub was fake.

The same website had earlier this year also stated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the 7th most corrupt prime minister in the world. One hopes that Pai has learnt his lesson and will desist from sharing such fake stories in future to avoid embarrassment for himself.

Experts believe that the foot soldiers of PM Modi will attempt to share more similar fake stories in future, at least, until the next year’s Lok Sabha polls to influence voters. Modi and his party have often been accused of resorting to lies and fake news to extract the much-needed electoral advantages.

BBC calls out Mohandas Pai’s fake news on Congress party, former Infosys executive faces condemnation from journalists

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Bhima Koregaon Case – Will look into activists’ arrests with a hawk’s eye: apex court

The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it would look into the Bhima Koregaoncase involving the arrest of five activists with a “hawk’s eye” as liberty cannot be sacrificed at the altar of conjectures, even as it extended their house arrest for a day.

The top court told the Maharashtra government that there should be a clear-cut distinction between opposition and dissent on one hand and the attempts to create disturbance, law and order problems and overthrow the government on the other.

“Our institutions must be robust enough to accommodate any dissent or opposition to the system or even to this court. We cannot sacrifice liberty at the altar of conjectures,” a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said.

The apex court extended till tomorrow the house arrest of five rights activists – Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Gautam Navlakha – at their respective homes. ASG Tushar Mehta, appearing for Maharashtra, said “as a nation, we should be concerned at this. It is too serious a matter. I request the court to form an opinion only after hearing the matter in full.”

To this, Justice Chandrachud said, “Yes, we will do that, but our mind is human” and added “We will look at this case with a hawk’s eye”. PTI

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In the heart of Kashmir, CRPF battalion asked to salute Bappa #WTFnews

Video goes viral; Commandant blames ‘overzealous’ jawans
Inquiry to be instituted to find out who ordered the guard of honour. ‘Corrective measures’ promised

An inquiry will be ordered into a guard of honour offered to a Ganesha idol at the headquarters of the 73rd battalion of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Kashmir last Thursday.

The video of seven jawans lining up for the guard of honour as a Ganpati idol is wheeled in amidst chants of ‘Ganpati Bappa Morya’ has gone viral in CRPF circles, raising questions about the rationale behind getting uniformed men to salute an idol of a god.

The incident occurred at the headquarters of the 73rd Battalion of CRPF at PHC Bemina on the National Highway number one in Srinagar, Kashmir. Mumbai Mirror is in possession of a copy of the video.

While CRPF takes pride in being a secular force and festivals linked to all religions are celebrated at its camps, offering a guard of honour to a god is unheard of.

Late on Wednesday, Commandant P P Pauly put the incident down to “overzealousness” and said he will institute a probe to find out who ordered the guard of honour. “Corrective measures will be taken,” Commandant Pauly said.

A senior serving CRPF officer, who did not wish to be identified, said gun salute to Ganpati was in violation of service rules. “The gun salute is reserved for senior officials and dignitaries. You cannot line up jawans to salute an idol in a religious ceremony,” he said.

Commandant Pauly said the Ganpati idol was not brought in as part of an official function nor was the guard of honour authorised by any senior officer. “Such regimental functions are jawans’ own initiatives and are organised across a spectrum of religions. In this case, the jawans overstepped,” he said.

Though Commandant Pauly said a guard of honour at a religious function was not part of any CRPF protocol, he said since the incident was a result of overenthusiasm of some jawans nobody has been penalised.

CRPF’s 73rd Battalion is administratively handled by the western region based in Belapur, Navi Mumbai. It is headed by IPS officer Raj Kumar. Calls to Kumar’s landline number went unanswered. CRPF PRO, western sector, Kishore Kumar Rao said he was not aware of the incident.

D G Pathak, who retired as DG of the Border Security Force, said, “Generally, such things are not done. There is no specific mention of such situations in the conduct rules, but if one is to judge it by the standard of general impropriety, then what took place is not appropriate. The paramilitary forces celebrate all festivals cutting across religions, but there should not be a formal salute to an idol. They seem to have gone beyond what is usually acceptable.”

https://epaper.timesgroup.com/Olive/ODN/MumbaiMirror/#

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