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Every saffron terrorist may be free before Modi completes his term

Every saffron terrorist may be free before Modi completes his term

By

Faraz Ahmad

Few people of the present day generation would know or recall the Hawala case of mid 1990s in which several prominent political leaders of BJP. Congress and even Janata Dal, led by L K Advani were charged with collecting bribe money from Hawala dealers Jain brothers of Madhya Pradesh. Except for then Janata Dal leaders Sharad Yadav and Devi Lal, after years of apparent meticulous probe by the CBI under the supervision of the Supreme Court, all were honourably discharged, for lack of evidence. Sharad and Devi Lal unfortunately said on camera that yes they had been given party funds and therefore they were initially denied the honourable acquittal till 1999 general elections they too aligned with the BJP and then onwards no one heard anything about the Hawala scam. The same is now happening with Saffron terror.

It all started with Amit Shah soon after Narendrabhai Damodardas Modi assumed the Prime Minister’s chair leading a Government in which his party the BJP had a clear majority. Never mind the transferring out of one CBI judge, the death in mysterious circumstances of the next Justice B H Loya, the third judge without any further delay discharged the BJP president within minutes of the court assembling for its first hearing of the case.

Col. Srikant Prasad Purohit, Pragya Singh Thakur and all the saffron terrorists rounded up for Malegaon, Samjhauta Express, Mecca Masjid, Ajmer Dargah  bomb blasts are now out enjoying complete freedom. So are the fake encounter specialists D G Vanzara, G L Singhal, Chudasma and all other officers. Some like P C Pande had also been reinstated.

Former Gujarat minister and six time MLA from Naroda, Maya Kodnani a gynaecologist, against whom the trial judge Jyotsana Yagnik found overwhelming evidence collected by the Special Investigative Team (SIT appointed by the Supreme Court and led by Modi’s trusted confidant R K Raghavan) to convict her for 28 years for allegedly leading and instigating mobs to kill at least 97 Muslims in the post Godhra pogrom, was acquitted the other day by the Gujarat High Court suddenly because the higher court preferred the testimony  of BJP president Amit Shah, who initially avoided testifying that Maya Kodnani was not at Naroda Patiya because she was with him in the Civil Hospital at the time the massacre of 97 Muslims took place.

The only one who could not be saved was Babu Bajrangi because the fool boasted in a Tehelka sting video how he slaughtered Muslims, threw them in the well, poured kerosene and burning tyres at them to give men, women and little children the most gruesome death. He too might escape the jail soon on the pretext of old age and alleged health problems. After all in his tape he states how three judges were changed at the instance of none other than Narendra Modi to get him out on bail.

Another saffron sadhu Swami Aseemanand charged with terrorism, had confessed before a magistrate. A confessional statement before a magistrate in an open court is not to be disputed. While making a “voluntary confession, the Sanghi sadhu had stated that he had a change of heart after one of the young Muslim boys accused of Mecca Masjid blast instead of nursing any grudge against him served him and treated him well in the Chanchalguda jail and there he admitted to this young man Shaikh Abdul Kaleem and another person Maqbool Bin Ali to his involvement in all the crimes he committed against Muslims at the instance of RSS. Kaleem was acquitted of the charge in 2008, soon after Aseemanand’s confession before the magistrate.

NIA judge Ravindra Reddy discharged the sadhu dismissing his confessional statement on the specious plea that the NIA gave no proof of any meeting between Kaleem and Aseemnanad and that Kaleem was there at all in Chanchalguda jail. Ha, ha! This Kaleem had been acquitted in 2008 and all the judge was required to do was to go through records of Kaleem in the court records and see where this Kaleem was interned and for how long. Nothing can be so unconvincing than the plea on which Justice Ravindra Reddy let off Swami Aseemanand. Reddy resigned immediately after delivering this judgment leading to speculation that like Loya he too might have been under pressure to free one more Saffron sadhu. Next day Kaleem came on record to ask why the court failed to ascertain the truth whether he and Aseemanand were there in that jail at the same time. Reddy too took back his resignation within 24 hours. But Aseemanand had to be freed lest he spilled more dark secrets about Sanghi terror. After all in February 2014, he told the Caravan magazine that some of the worst terror attacks in India were sanctioned by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), and its then General Secretary Mohan Bhagwat. Although Aseemanand subsequently denied making such allegations, the magazine released audio tapes of the interviews which included the Swami’s stunning allegations.

In the meantime witness after witness in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter case is “turning hostile.” Already one upright Judge has been abruptly transferred out soon after she pulled up the investigating agency for not providing adequate security to the witnesses. Quite clearly the task for the new judge is cut out.

At this rate, one can safely predict that before Modi led BJP government completes its term and goes for the next general elections, every single person involved or charged with Saffron terror will be out. Never mind any amount of evidence and testimony.

Eom

 

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Loya case: Apex court suddenly finds PILs irksome

 

Loya case: Apex court suddenly finds PILs irksome

By

Faraz Ahmad

The conclusion of the case in the Supreme Court of India seeking a fair and impartial probe into the circumstances of the death of former Judge of Bombay High Court Justice B H Loya four years ago was foregone the day the four senior most judges of the apex court went public on January 10, 2018 raising issues relating to judicial propriety of the Chief Justice of India and also expressed apprehension about a fair trial of the public interest litigation (PIL) concerning Justice Loya’s death.

The decision of the four senior most judges of the Supreme Court to go public did have a limited sobering effect insofar as Justice Arun Mishra to whom the case was assigned by Chief Justice of India (CJI)  Dipak Mishra virtually threw out the petitions back into the Chief Justice’s court who thereafter constituted a three judge bench comprising himself and two other judges Justices D Y Chandrachud and A M Khanwilkar, his preferred bench in many other controversial cases relating to this Government, to hear the petitions.

But reporters who covered the proceedings were almost certain that the apex court would do nothing except dismiss this petition out of hand, presuming as one of them said on the condition of anonymity, “Don’t you see, it would have put BJP president Amit Shah’s fate in jeopardy? Did you expect anything different?” It is also common knowledge now that while the Supreme Court site carrying the full judgment crashed soon after the Justice Chandrachud read out the judgment, leading to panic among Supreme Court reporters, before those covering the proceedings could get a copy of the judgment, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad was addressing a press conference forcefully defending the judgment and casting aspersions at those raising questions at the death of Justice B H Loya. It was a voluminous judgment and reading through the entire plethora of pages would have taken a while. But within no time the Law minister was addressing the media leading to suspicion that the minister may have got the copy of the judgment perhaps even before it was read out in the open court. This apprehension further reinforced when upon their making a noise about this, the concerned Information Officer (IO) in the Government Media Centre and not in the Supreme Court, called up each one of them and handed over the voluminous hard copy of the judgment.

It is still in the realm of speculation whether this judgment was available to Mr Prasad well in advance to seek his approval. But Mr Prasad’s diatribe against his political rivals implicitly admitted that had the bench ordered an independent probe into Justice Loya’s death, it would have jeopardized the political and personal future of Amit Shah, an accused in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh “encounter” case, that Justice Loya was dealing with, when he died.

Noted Supreme Court senior counsel Indira Jaising pointed out that “On February 19 (2018, (when this bench admitted the concerned petitions for hearing), the CJI said: ‘We will not go into the bona fides of petitioners.’ But the judgment appeared obsessed with the bona fides of the petitioners. So what happened in between? He went back on his word.” Yes the judgment did not confine to that alone,  but issued veiled threats naming some of them and saying they deserved penal action for contempt of court, in the process castigating the whole trend of PILs.

Strangely when BJP MP Subramanian Swamy rushes every now and then to the apex court seeking early settlement of the Babri Masjid Ram Mandir dispute to remove all obstacles from starting the construction of the mandir on the disputed site, or seeking to hang UPA government on spectrum allocation, the court had no laconic comments to offer though eventually it did dismiss his petition. In fact not once the apex court questioned the bona fides of Sway who is a compulsive frivolous litigant regarding issues hardly affecting him personally in any way.

But death of a fellow senior judge under very questionable circumstances was like any other routine stuff to the apex court and the bench actually sought not to be sidetracked from weighty work they were involved in by such, in their opinion, frivolous matters.

That there were clear recorded discrepancies in the Ravi Bhawan register where Justice Loya was ostensibly putting up the night of November 30, 2014, this court did not consider important enough. Nor the reports of how Doctor Vyawhare, closely related to a BJP minister in Maharashtra unexpectedly descended upon the team conducting post mortem and manipulated the report. It did not matter to them that Justice Loya was a healthy active and young person with no history of any illness and therefore him suffering a heart attack was most unusual, observed his doctor sister and ageing parents alive and active to this day.

The family and friends of Justice Loya had said on record that Justice Loya had stated before his death that he was under pressure in this case and offered a Rs 100 crore plus a big flat in any posh locality of Mumbai. It did not matter to this court that two of Justice Loya’s close friends who questioned the circumstances of his death themselves died in mysterious circumstances and the third was just lucky to escape the attack on him.

The first judge who was trying the Amit Shah case and was found “difficult” and transferred overnight in spite of clear instructions of this same apex court that the trial be conducted and concluded by the same judge. The second Justice Loya died, if nothing else, a premature death and the third acquitted Amit Shah within minutes on the first hearing setting aside all canons of judicial propriety. All this was of no consequences to the learned judges because they had made up their mind beforehand that the BJP president was being unfairly targeted. Naturally then they found these PILs irksome. It has to be seen whether this was one off remark of our learned judges or signifies a growing trend of the Supreme Court of India.

Eom

 

 

Lalu’s treatment and conviction smack of vindictiveness and miscarriage of justice

Lalu’s treatment and conviction smack of vindictiveness and miscarriage of justice

By

Faraz Ahmad

The decision of the BJP-led Jharkhand government to deny air travel to a sick former chief minister and a popular mass leader Lalu Prasad, convicted on trumped up charges in the so-called fodder scam discovered by him as united Bihar chief minister in the mid 1990s, more than 20 years ago, smacks of nothing but petty vindictiveness.

A puppet of a Jharkhand chief minister Raghubar Das who has no political standing in Ranchi like many of Narendra Modi and Amit Shah’s pawns sitting in Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and now add Bihar’s chief minister Nitish Kumar as well, indicates that Das might have got his orders directly from Delhi.  In fact had the Ranchi Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) not forcefully recommended his transfer to All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi, Modi’s Sanghi fiefdom would have preferred Lalu languishing and dying in Ranchi prison only.

Lalu’s Aryan Savarna detractors and these are in millions, including some of the so-called liberals who insist that Lalu is corrupt and has promoted his family only and therefore deserves nothing but severest punishment, are therefore gleeful at the Sanghi establishment denying the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief the basic courtesy extended even to the likes of Abu Salem.

There was a former Haryana minister Gopal Kanda, whose real name was Gopal Kumar Goyal, the son of a whole sale grains trader from Sirsa who amassed so much wealth that he even launched an airline and employed pretty young women as air hostesses and executives and sexually exploited them, one of whom Geetika Sharma committed suicide unable to fight off Kanda. Later because the Delhi High Court dismissed Geetika’s suicide note as incredible evidence and let off Kanda. During his brief incarceration too Kanda lived like a King in the jail.

Former Haryana chief minister Om Prakash Chautala convicted in teachers’ recruitment scam was convicted in January, 2013 but has remained mostly out on bail or parole. I don’t grudge him this because for one he is old. Second the chatterati hated him equally because he appeared too coarse for their taste and did not speak English. But the court has taken note of his age, his health and related matters. Fair enough. For all Chautala’s criticism he did convert Gurgaon from a backward sleepy backyard of Delhi to a modern business city, the hoi polloi aspires to live and work in.

Returning to Lalu’s case seeing the vindictive attitude of the BJP-led government against the leader of social justice it is worth pondering whether his conviction does not betray a degree of miscarriage of justice by  the Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) special judge in Ranchi Shivpal Singh, who sentenced last week former Bihar chief minister and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief to 14 years in jail .

The same court had earlier pronounced three more harsh sentences on this OBC leader,(perceived by a large section of the backward and even Dalits as the real Mandal messiah) since the acceptance of Mandal Commission report by the then Prime Minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh in August 1990,) the fodder scam case which took place over more than a decade under several chief ministers much before Lalu became chief minister of the then untied Bihar including the now separated state of Jharkhand.

This sentence pronouncing incarceration of Lalu for unusually longer period was delivered by the same judge after pronouncing three severe sentences in the same case on Lalu, defying the well-established principle of justice which prohibits the courts to punish any person twice for the same offence and the Ranchi High Court had earlier struck down the second sentence on this ground. But the apex court bench of Justice Arun Mishra and Amitava Roy, (now retired), which has been in the news of late for their alleged proximity to the BJP leaders,  struck down the High Court order and gave a  go ahead to Shivpal Singh to teach Lalu a lesson. There is one more of the series of these cases still pending but already the sentences pronounced by Shivpal Singh ordered to run not concurrently but consecutively would mean that Lalu should not come out of prison in his life time.

This sentence is all the more alarming when we read the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA) under which Lalu is being punished.

A person is liable to be punished under this Act only if he has taken “personal gratification other than legal remuneration in respect of an official act, in which case if the public servant is found guilty he shall be punishable with imprisonment for not less than 6 months but which may extend to 5 years and shall also be liable to fine.

Besides taking gratification in order to influence public servant, by corrupt or illegal means, shall also be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than three year but which may extend to seven years and shall also be liable to fine.

Third, taking gratification, for exercise of personal influence with public servant shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months but which may extend to five years and shall also be liable to fine.

Fourth, abetment by public servant of offences defined in Section 8 or 9, shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than six months but which may extend to five years and shall also be liable to fine.

Fifth, a public servant obtaining valuable thing without consideration from person concerned in proceeding or business transacted by such public servant, shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than six months but which may extend to five years and shall also be liable to fine.

Sixth, punishment for abetment of offences defined in Section 7 or 11 shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than six months but which may extend to five years and shall also be liable to fine.

Seventh, any public servant, who commits criminal misconduct shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than one year but which may extend to 7 years and shall also be liable to fine.

Eight, habitual committing of offence under Section 8, 9 and 12 shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than two years but which may extend to 7 years and shall also be liable to fine.

Incidentally in 1998 soon after the first NDA government assumed office the CBI registered a Disproportionate Assets case against Lalu Prasad and charged that he and his wife Rabri Devi who succeeded him as Bihar chief minister, had defalcated Rs 46 lakh from the government treasury. The CBI led by a well known Lalu biaiter U N BIswas who summoned Army to arrest Lalu and Joginder Singh a die hard RSS man, submitted its charge sheet in the year 2000 and there it listed all the movable and immovable assets of Lalu Prasad which even grossly exaggerated were somewhere around Rs 40 lakh and these included a flat in the MLA colony in Patna, a Maruti 800 non deluxe car, a couple of Indira and Kisan Vikas Patras each of a few thousand value in the name of his many children and a few kantha agricultural land in his and his wife’s village. This for a man who first became a member of Parliament in 1977 and since then remained a MP or MLA till in 2013, when  he was disqualified because of his conviction in the fodder scam.

Naturally then Lalu Yadav and Rabri Devi were both honourably acquitted in the Disproportionate Assets case. So therefore in all the convictions meted out to Lalu he is neither charged by the prosecution nor has the judge convicted him for any personal gratification. It cannot, when his assets were not found to be disproportionate to his known sources of income.

So what is the charge against Lalu in the innumerable fodder cases in which he is being convicted? That as the chief minister of the state he presided over the conspiracy to defraud the state in the fodder scam to the tune of Rs 900 crore. That means that at best he could be an offender under the fourth para listed above. The punishment for this is specified in the Act itself as maximum five years.

So how come sentence after sentence to run consecutively is being thrown at Lalu ensuring that this man should not come out alive from the prison? Even a hardened criminal is not dealt in this harsh manner and instead normally granted the benefit of his sentences running concurrently. Curiously the same court has honourably acquitted Lalu’s predecessor Jagannath Mishra, widely known in his time as one of the most corrupt chief minister of Bihar and under whose rule the fodder scam commenced.

This reminds one of the judicial murder of former Pakistan Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Bhutto’s political rival one Ahmed Raza Kasuri (alive till date) charged, after Bhutto had been deposed by General Mohammad Ziaul Haq in a coup, that at some point of time in distant past, Bhutto had ordered his killing. The FIR stated that at the instance of Bhutto a team of secret service officers shot at him while he was driving down. But the bullet missed him and instead hit his father who died.

Quite simply the man himself did not charge Bhutto with murder. Legally even if there was any truth in that allegation and with Zia ruling it was difficult to establish the veracity of the allegations because the concerned officers won’t dare defy the Chief Martial Law Administrator. That apart, even if there was any truth in those allegations, the case could be divided into two parts. One, of attempted murder of Ahmed Raza Kasuri and the other of accidental death of his father which was culpable homicide not amounting to murder. Nowhere could Section 302 of the PPC come into play. But that mullah judge Mohammad Husain of Lahore High Court was vituperative and venomous in delivering his judgment against Bhutto.

The tone and tenor of Justice Shivpal Singh somehow reminds one of Judge Mohammad Husain of Lahore High Court.

Eom

 

 

 

Why would Modi government seek review of apex court order on PoA?

Why would Modi government seek review of apex court order on PoA?

By

Faraz Ahmad

Even as the SC and ST members of Parliament from the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) are urging the Government to seek review of the latest Supreme Court order on Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act to dilute the stringent provisions of the PoA Act, there are indications that this Government is unlikely to challenge the order of the two judge bench of Justice U U Lalit and A K Goel, because this has in fact vindicated a large and influential section of hard core Hindutva elements in the BJP and among some of its allies like the Shiv Sena seeking for long dilution the PoA.

A bench of Justices UU Lalit and Adarsh Goel recently held that the PoA Act had to be interpreted in a manner that “the law cannot be converted into a charter for exploitation or oppression by an unscrupulous person or by police for extraneous reasons against other citizens (read upper caste)” .

Putting a bar on arrests immediately after the registration of an FIR, the bench held that a person can be arrested only after the police conduct a preliminary enquiry into the complaint within seven days, that a person can be released on anticipatory bail unless a prima facie case of crimes or atrocities is made out, and in case of a public servant, prosecution can be carried out only after the appointing authority grants prior sanction.

Thus henceforth it will be well-nigh impossible for the persecuted Dalits and Tribals to seek legal redressal for their day to day harassment or insult and injury. This is significant in the context of the May, 2017 Shabirpur violence in which the Rajputs of neighbouring villages attacked the Dalits of Shabirpur village in the vicinity of Saharanpur in UP and while the Dalit firebrand leader Chandra Shekhar Azad who formed the Bhim Army of Dalit youth, is languishing in jail, on bogus allegations, all the Rajputs rounded up later, are out on bail more than a year after the violence and the state may next even withdraw cases against them.

Justice Lalit and Goel  delivered another controversial judgment last July attempting to strike down the stringent clauses of Section 498 A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) enacted to protect women against widely prevalent cases of dowry harassment and ruled that the account of the victim in the such cases be not taken at face value and forbade arrests or coercive action against the accused in such complaints without ascertaining the veracity of the allegations. For that the two judge bench suggested the creation of family welfare committees in all states and ordained that “all such complaints received by the police or the magistrate must be referred to the family welfare committee and no action should be taken against the husband and the in-laws till the committee gave its report after interacting with the parties.” Already the woman facing physical and mental torture by her in laws in her husband’s house is all alone with none, very often not even her parents, coming to her rescue. That is why Section 498 A was strengthened by the law makers. Despite this the Police are mostly reluctant to act. After this, knowing the slow process of all such committees, it may become well-nigh impossible for married women to seek legal redressal in dowry cases. Once the victim’s statement has been struck down as void the dying declaration of a dowry death victim too will be of tertiary value only.

This dowry judgment is worth mentioning here because of a certain mind set which was evident yesterday when a good section of BJP and Shiv Sena MPs actually welcomed the Supreme Court judgment sought to protect the accused in the PoA cases. Outer Delhi MP Ramesh Bidhuri already known for his obnoxious remarks against Muslims in Parliament was besides with joy stating, “This is a very good order. In fact the Supreme Court should also make changes in the provisions of sexual harassment cases. There are women who make money by misusing the provisions.” An organization has been functioning from Saket to ostensibly protect the husbands from dowry cases. The members of this organization are also active in other Sangh related programmes. And that is where the connection is between these two judgments for both vindicate the perception of the Hindutva male that he is the victim of Muslim, Dalit and women. The two Supreme Court judgments of these two honourable judges strengthens their case.

Meanwhile Shiv Sena MP from Yavatmal-Washim Bhawama Gawali Patil focused mainly on this order and welcomed it saying the Act is misused both by the scheduled castes and general castes and claimed that “people have started using scheduled caste people as tools to take revenge from upper caste people.”

Thus except for the SC/ST MPs the prevalent mood in the BJP or rather Hindutva circles was to justify and laud the Supreme Court for coming to the relief and rescue of the upper caste. And not without reason for soon after assuming power, one of the first things the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi did was to set up a committee under its Raipur MP Ramesh Bais which in its report submitted to Parliament in December, 2014, almost the second session of the 16th Lok Sabha raised the issue of “misuse” of the PoA and recommended necessary safeguards against it. The committee observed that, “the PoA Act being a special law, should be wholesome to the extent that it must contain an inbuilt provision for securing justice for those too who are falsely implicated with mala fide under it.” This implied that if for any number of reasons a Dalit victim of atrocity fails to prove, even because of complicity of the prosecuting authority, say the Police, then instead he be punished, thus putting the fear of God in the heart of a Dalit victim of atrocity by an upper caste man or a group of men as in Shabirpur. Ironically another one time militant Dalit leader Udit Raj was also in this committee.

Overall this reflects the upper caste patriarchal mind set of BJP non SC/ST MPs who consider the provisions of PoA Act or Section 498A or the laws against sexual harassment of women as a constraint to their freedom to lead their lives in an orderly patriarchal society. Sadly the bench of Justice Lalit and Goel has encouraged those with medieval mind set to hope to revert to the pre modern era. That’s what BJP actually seeks though it may not state this publicly for fear of alienating the large SC/ST constituency still voting for it. But having secured such a ruling from the Supreme Court, it does not stand to reason that this Government would do anything to challenge this or even its earlier Dowry order.

Eom

 

 

Mandal once more defeated Hindutva

UP, Bihar by-poll results

Mandal once more defeated Hindutva

By Faraz Ahmad

Thanks to the shocking reverse the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) faced in its current citadel of Hindi heartland, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, most urban elite analysts disdainful of Mandal, seem to concede that Mandal has once more defeated Hindutva.

In other words caste has once more surmounted the communal divide that helped the BJP win UP both in 2014 general elections and yet again the 2017 state assembly elections and in Bihar prove once again to chief minister Nitish Kumar that the combined might of the depressed sections of society is far more potent than the coming together of the upper caste exploitative classes and therefore his teaming up with the BJP may not necessarily see his party the JD(U) through in the 2019 general elections.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a true swayamsevak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) always attacked “caste politics” and so did all his Bhakts and party sympathisers and workers. But what Modi and the RSS have often implied is to submerge the caste identity into a larger Hindu identity projecting the Muslim as an outsider enemy against whom all the Hindus should unite to perpetuate a strong robust, masculine Hindu India. And it worked in 2014 and again in 2017 in UP. But in 2015 in Bihar it failed when Lalu Prasad forgetting the past, forgave and embraced Nitish Kumar, a fellow backward leader to challenge the might of the nationwide forward ascendancy and tyranny unleashed immediately after Modi led BJP assumed power.

These results demonstrate in the words of political scientist Suhas Palshikar how flawed is the understanding of caste by the urban upper caste elite in India. The usage of the term “Case politics, according to Palshikar is limited, misleading and superficial, stating further that “Given that caste is based on inequality, this (caste politics) was a natural development wherein castes treated as lower in the ritual hierarchy, sought to redress their grievance through democratic mobilization,” adding that “Caste politics (in this sense ) is a necessity.” He concludes by saying, “So long as caste continues to be a crucial basis of inequality, caste politics is bound to take place.”

Contrary to the superficial analysis of TV anchors, mere expediency of votes did not bring together the Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son Akhliseh Yadav and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) of Behen Mayawati. It was the mood of their constituency which felt threatened and feared annihilation under a reasserting Rajput Ajay Singh Bisht, nee Yogi Adityanath whose first task after assuming power was to get the chief minister’s residence 5, Kalaidas Marg  depolluted and “purified” before he would deign to step in. It did not escape anyone that the immediate previous occupant of the bungalow was a Yadav, a Shudra and before that Behenji a Dalit. Naturally then a casteist Rajput CM would not sleep under a polluted roof before it was properly cleaned with cow milk and Vedic rituals.

Within days of assuming office he ordered the closure of almost all meat shops in his state, selling not cow but goat, chicken or at the most buffalo meat. Meat trade has still to recover from that Tughlaqi Firman. On the face of it this was to spite the ‘Mansahari Malichh Musalman’ publicly despised by the Gorakhpur Math Mahant. But it is common knowledge that the leather industry in India is naturally dependent on the availability of animal hide and the skinning and treating is mainly done by the Dalits, specially the politically dominant Jatavs. So this was killing two birds with one stroke. That is why propping up a well-known Muslim leader Atiq Ahmad in Phulpur failed to persuade a bulk of Muslims to be swayed by communal considerations.

Next he got rid of almost all the backward and Dalit police officers right upto Thana level and replace these with the Rajputs, Bhumihars and other forwards. Todate the state is under the siege of the upper caste tyrants.

Since March 20, 2017 when he assumed office, 38 people have been gunned down by the UP Police in so called encounters numbering 1142 till January 31, 2018. Most of them being Muslims, Yadavs and Jatavs and even others from OBC, Dalit and Muslim section of the population with not a single Bhumihar or Rajput touched, notwithstanding the fact that the Rajputs went bersek the day Yogi became CM and entered Police stations to drag out Yadav, Jatav or OBC, Dalit officers, and assaulting them in full public view all with video recordings. Even District Police chief and his family members had to run for safety from the menace of the goons let loose by this regime.

Chandrashekhar Azad leading the young Dalits’ Bhim Army against the atrocities by the upper caste is languishing in jail and there is no redressal while the Rajputs who attacked the Dalits are freely roaming around. This forced the victims of the upper caste terror in UP to come together and challenge the tyranny of the Yogi regime.

Ditto in Bihar. The moment Nitish Kumar abandoned Lalu and embraced Narendra Modi the cow vigilantes were out on the streets harassing and assaulting Muslims in the name of protecting Gau Mata, with Nitish Kumar looking the other side. Then Lalu who alone is perceived as standing upto to the might of the saffron brigade has been incarcerated far away from home in Ranchi jail, to prevent him from leading his party and to demoralize his followers.

Nitish Kumar’s draconian prohibition drive is also mainly affecting the poor Dalits who are being rounded up and taken to the Police stations. On the other hand following the Gujarat model the illicit liquor trade and bootlegging has become a source of huge black money, going directly into the pockets of the political patrons. This has naturally exposed Nitish as a stooge of the Bhumihars. That is how all the oppressed sections came together to ensure the RJD victory in Jehanabad.

And while there is still a long way to go, the consolidation of Mandal forces in UP if it succeeds is the only credible challenge to the might of Hindutva.

Eom

 

Was Prime Minister’s reaction just a Jumla?

Plese note: This piece was written a day after the Prime Minister uncharacteristically reacted almost immediately to the demolishing statues by his BJP goons and justified by his appointed Governor of Tripura and BJP general secretary Ram Madhav. But it got delayed because the mainstream media seemed to be reluctant and hesitant about carrying it. I still feel the issue needs to be highlighted and put in proper perspective, nevertheless. So here is the piece on my blog.

 

Was Prime Minister’s reaction just a Jumla?

By

Faraz Ahmad

 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, , reacted with rare and uncharacteristic alacrity over the acts of “triumph and valour” (in Tripura, a day after BJP won elections there), of his Sanghi comrades in pulling down the statue of Vladimir Illyich Ulyanov, better known to the world as Comrade Lenin the father of the Communist October Revolution and videographing playing football with Lenin’s head.

Evidently the BJP goons who performed this disgraceful act of violence enjoyed the support and patronage of the current Tripura Governor Tathagat Roy, a card holder vituperative Sanghi and the BJP’s all-purpose man, Ram Madhav, who was overseeing the simultaneous elections in the three north eastern states on behalf of his party.

Both Roy and Madhav reiterated their stand not once but repeatedly, (even after Home Minister Rajnath Singh, presumably on Prime Minister’s instructions, advised restraint) justifying these acts of vandalism and naked violence against the CPI(M)cadres and leadership in Tripura. Later the Prime Minister and the new BJP chief minister sought to underplay this by inviting outgoing CM Manik Sarkar to the swearing in ceremony (nothing unusual) and  Modi walking upto Sarkar to shake hands  and then walk him hand in hand to impress the outside world with the video being put out widely for sending across the message of our Prime Minister’s magnanimity.

But before the Prime Minister could speak out, the message has gone out and taking a cue from Roy and Madhav, BJP national secretary H Raja from Tamil Nadu announced with great fanfare on his Facebook wall and Twitter account that next in line would be the founder of Dravidian movement of self-respect E V Ramaswamy Naicker ‘Periyar’. He of course heeded the advice and soon enough withdrew his remarks, but his followers circulated it widely.

The issue is why did the Prime Minister behave so differently? No doubt the Prime Minister has been quick to react to actress Sridevi’s unfortunate accidental death and was even quicker to congratulate actress Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli on their marriage and to visit their reception as well.

The Punjab National Bank scam to the tune of over Rs 20,000 crore and some say could even go upto Rs 60,000 crore committed by Diamond jewelers Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, members of Narendra Modi’s trusted fan club, filling up the BJP  coffers, surfaced on February 15. The NIrav-Choksi family absconded in January, went abroad and joined the Prime Minister’s entourage in Davos in late January. The Parliament logjam over the Prime Minister’s refusal to clarify his position and proximity to the scamsters, continues into the second week now. The Prime Minister however is unrelenting. Instead we see his proxies target former Finance Minister P Chidambaram who is bright enough to catch Modi and his Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on the wrong foot ever so often.

In last three years there are N number of acts of violence and vandalism committed by his Bhakts, sometime in the garb of Gau rakshaks sometime in the name of love jihad and often times without any provocation targeting Muslims. The Prime Minister has almost always turned a deaf ear and a blind eye. In fact when his woman minister, one more of the army of Sanghi ‘Bhogis’ parading around in saffron as Sadhus and Sadhvis called Modi’s opponents Bastards (the exact word in Hindi was Haramzadon), the Prime Minister was most indulgent and smilingly asked the MPs not to make an issue of it because the poor Sadhvi was still new to politics.

Then why was the Prime Minister so prompt in taking adverse notice of what his Bhakts consider an act of valour and triumph? Moreover despite the warning first of the Home Minister and then a word of disapproval from the Prime Minister himself, relayed through the Mid-day news of All India Radio (AIR) a day after the breaking of the news, the chain reaction continued. In Coimbatore some BJP fellows actually went and tried to deface Periyar’s statue and in Meerut run by another Bhogi parading around as a Yogi, the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Adityanath, they vandalized the statue of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar. Of course in retaliation some opponents tried to deface BJP icon Shyama Prasad Mukherjee’s statue in Kolkatta, but give it to West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, she immediately got the youth arrested unlike Roy and Madhav in Tripura, or Adityanath in UP or Amit Shah in Delhi who could take disciplinary action against Madhav and Raja, were they not enjoying his tacit support.

The Tamil Nadu elections are at hand and the BJP is desperately trying to woo a section of Tamilians to fill up the vacuum created by the death of J Jayalalitha, which no leader of her party is capable of. Simultaneously old war horse M Karunanidhi heading the DMK too is virtually on his death bed. So the field appears wide open for anyone to try filling up the political space.

Modi first paid obeisance to the dead Jayalalitha, never mind her conviction on corruption cases in which her lieutenant Sasikala is serving jail sentence. Then he went and touched Karunanidhi’s feet. The BJP made a special concession for Kerala and Tamil Nadu to consume as much Beef (cow only) as they choose to, except in Madras IIT, which is the forte of North Indian Aryans.  All to appease the non Brahmins of Tamil Nadu who hold greater reverence for Periyar than any Aryan patheon. All, to find a political foothold in Tamil Nadu. After all our Gau rakshak Prime Minister and his Gau rakshak sewna has no hesitation in allowing the people of North-East, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Goa to slaughter as many cows as they want for satiating themselves with Gau mans. So expediency demands a Jumla against statue demolition as well.

As for Ambedkar and the Dalits of UP, Adityanath’s apparent agenda is to put the Shudra and Dalits along with the Malichh Musalaman in their place and reestablish the supremacy of the Aryavrat. People of UP voted overwhelmingly for this in 2014 and again in 2017 and the BJP is confident they will do the same in the next elections if the Aryavrat assertion is reemphasized. Why else would a UP minister in the presence of the chief minister hurl abuses at BSP chief Mayawati, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, and its patron Mulayam Singh Yadav, except to rub it in that they are not Aryans and therefore do not deserve ever to rule anywhere in India. So the PM’s Bhakts will take this Jumla, too in their stride.

Eom

 

BJP Govt. U turn on auction

 

BJP Govt. U turn on auction:

No more sale of natural resources

By

Faraz Ahmad

 

In the midst of the reports of Modis looting our nationalized banks and the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) we seem to have missed completely  the news that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led Government is out to dump the much hyped policy of auction of natural resources, the issue over which it brought down the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government raising to sky its pitch, dubbing Manmohan Singh’s government and the then Prime Minister corrupt.  None other than Niti Ayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar disclosed this to the worthies of the corporate world, gladdening their hearts at a conference jointly organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Institute of Economic Growth on February 14.

Kumar announced, “We have not done the famous spectrum sales (recently, that is in this financial year ) and there is a rethinking in the Government, I think about how to use natural resources for revenue raising and for economic development. I think there will be a new telecom policy, I believe  is on the anvil. This is a beginning of a process whereby you don’t try and always maximize government revenues through natural resources. Instead you may want to maximize the development by bringing in greater benefits, if you like to citizens or private sector, who are the users of these natural resources.

But that is precisely what prompted Manmohan Singh to stick to shun auction of spectrum or coal mines, and earnethe opprobrium ire of the then Comptroller and Auditor General Vinod Rai, quite clearly now at the instance of the BJP, accusing the UPA government of incurring a “presumptive” loss of 1.76 lakh crore to the national exchequer and the BJP along with other parties including the Left, chiefly the CPM, went to town accusing the UPA government of 2G scam and pushing the then Telecom minister A Raja, a DMK nominee to jail and convincing the people at large that this was the biggest scam ever in the history of modern India.

Similar allegations were leveled regarding the allocation of coal mines by the previous government and that was described as coal scam. The BJP refused to allow the two Houses of Parliament to run for several consecutive sessions. Vinod Rai became a hero hurriedly enchasing on his new found popularity churning out the tale of his “crusade against corruption” titled “Not Just an Accountant: The Diary of the Nation’s conscience keeper.”

The perpetual compulsive litigant Subramanian Swamy ran to the Supreme Court to seek its intervention and the Court promptly responded by virtually castigating the UPA government as corrupt and striking down the allocation of both the spectrum to the telecom operators who spent crores buying it and also those who got the coal mines. Never mind the losses the people of the country suffered in sheer tariff terms, which went up automatically. That apart, the mobile telephony which was rapidly expanding  throughout the country suddenly slowed down causing immense losses to the new operators who had now bought the spectrum at a higher  premium and had naturally to recover this from thesubscriber.

It was evident to any one who had the sense to apply his mind for a minute. But who cared then. Vinod Rai, has not spoken a word after the CBI court has thrown out the CBI charge against Raja and DMK leader Kanimozhi disdainfully regretting that the CBI brought no credible evidence to prove its charge of any wrong doing on the part of the then Government.

The fact of the matter remained that the decision to do away with the auction of spectrum and instead go for revenue sharing was taken by the first NDA government and by none other than  the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who briefly held the telecom portfolio. Since then several ministers handled telecom in the NDA government including Arun Shourie whose financial integrity, nobody dare question. None reverted to auction. Yet that Vinod Rai chose to raise a finger only against the UPA Government.

Similarly the decision to not auction coal too was taken jointly by a committee consisting of several state government representatives including those from Rajasthan led by the BJP and West Bengal then led by the CPM who all opposed auction and preferred some government control over natural resources rather than sell these at a high price to earn big money.  But the blame went on the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

They all cried, “corruption, corruption, corruption!” Anna Hazare came, Baba Ramdev came. Kiran Bedi came, General V K Singh came Narendra Modi made this an election issue. Much later he made  a cheap remark in Parliament against Manmohan Singh insinuating that Singh too was corrupt and just last month he again accused the Congress of being corrupt. All because it carried on with the policy of no auction on the strength of wide ranging expert advice including the recommendations of the Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRA).

But today the same Modi and his Government is happily declaring that auctioning natural resources is not in the interest of the citizens and more significantly the private sector. Why? Because the private sector groaning against the losses is failing to expand and therefore not able to return the huge loans it had borrowed from the banks which resulted in rising non-performing assets of the banks, bringing the banks to the point of bankruptcy. That’s when they take a U turn and say they would not auction the spectrum henceforth. Where is Vinod Rai, where is Anna Hazare, where are Kiran Bedi and General V K Singh today? Can we hear any of them accuse this Government of corruption after all the huge scams much bigger than what the UPA was accused in its four year tenure? No because all that was an RSS orchestrated campaign to bring down the UPA government.

Eom