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Archive for category Human Rights

Indian liberalism is a historical myth that must be countered if we want to understand our society

Indian liberalism is a historical myth that must be countered if we want to understand our society

We continue to believe that what is happening today is simply an aberration and long to return to a past that did not exist.

Mar 09, 2020 · 06:30 am

Sanjay Srivastava

The last few years have been particularly noticeable for remembering dead and ageing parents. Not just any common garden variety ones, of course, but a very specific kind. These are the parents who, apparently, bequeathed a tolerant, liberal and non-majoritarian India to their children. They embraced religious diversity, resisted various forms of bigotry and promoted the values of constitutional morality. They instilled in their progeny the importance of imagining a post-colonial republic where differences of class, caste, religion and ethnicity would be unequivocally erased.

In media articles and social media outpourings, these parents – narrators of a tryst with destiny – are sorely missed. Over the past six years, everything that the immediate ancestors dreamt of has been, apparently, upturned. In around half a decade, centuries of Indian tolerance – the aforementioned parents being its clearest exemplars – has been wiped out.

The romance of Indian liberalism, fed by the ever-nourishing rivers of historical myth-making of recent origin, needs to be countered if we are ever to undertake the task of taking a good hard look at ourselves – and our parents. Liberal ancestor worship does not serve us well. It certainly does not allow for an understanding of the nature of Indian society either over the longue durèe or in the recent past.

The good Muslim syndrome

The most fundamental aspect of our recent past is that our parents were not particularly committed to the values of religious tolerance that they are frequently credited with as a pre-Modi phenomenon. Their relationship with their Muslim co-citizens was premised on a specific set of circumstances.

Firstly, it had to do with Muslims “knowing their place”. Muslims were to act as mascots of Hindu India’s tolerant culture, rather than exercise an identity that might assert equality with members of the majority community. This was the condition of Hindu contextualism where “secular India” was deeply rooted in the values and public symbolism of Hinduism. Our public functions began (and still begin) with lighting lamps, ships were launched by breaking coconuts and we sang (and now sing with greater fervour) Sanskrit hymns at various national occasions as if these were areligious markers of post-colonial identity.

That is the world our parents grew up in and subscribed to: the “good Muslim” was the one who knew his or her place in a society marked by Hindu contextualism. Even Nehru, perhaps one of the very few who might have understood the meaning of genuine multiculturalism, was not able to counter these tendencies.

Eliding caste

Secondly, there was no India of our parent’s generation that seriously engaged with the caste question. Rather, if we have now come to believe that our parents decried casteism – and that its resurgence is linked to the break-down of their culture of liberalism – this is an entirely spurious view, nurtured by a very Indian culture of filial obligation.

Men and women of an earlier generation – the first and second generation of post-Independence parents – were as deeply casteist as their apparent antithetical contemporary counterparts. What was true of the earlier generation was that – like the Left parties – they pronounced that “in their circles” caste was not a problem.

There is a very common refrain among many now in their seventies and eighties that as school-going students, they had no idea about the caste of their fellow students. This does not, of course, prove that India of the 1950s and ’60s was not marked by caste hierarchies. Rather that in our parents’ generation, there was no occasion for encountering it as those among whom they moved were uniformly upper-caste. The comforts of caste-homogenous social circles ensured that there was no necessity of thinking about caste as a problem. This might only have been the case if different castes encountered each other in the same social milieu.

A soft bigotry

The fact of the matter is that neither was our parents’ time one of a golden age of tolerance and constitutional morality nor is it the case that we have now – in a space of six years! – dramatically changed. The first perspective is misplaced filial obligation and the second is a simplistic understanding of social and cultural change.

Our parents practised bigotry of a quiet sort, one that did not require the loud proclamations that are the norm now. Muslims and the lower castes knew their place and the structures of social and economic authority were not under threat. This does not necessarily translate into a tolerant generation. Rather, it was a generation whose attitudes towards religion and caste was never really tested.

The loud bigotry of our times is no great break from the past in terms of a dramatic change in attitudes – is it really possible that such changes can take place in such few years? Rather, it is the crumbling of the veneer of tolerance against those who once knew their place but no longer wish to accept that position.

The great problem with all this is that we continue to believe that what is happening today is simply an aberration and that we will, when the nightmare is over, return to the Utopia that was once ours. However, it isn’t possible to return to the past that was never there. It will only lead to an even darker future. And, filial affection is no antidote for it.

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As India’s Muslims are lynched, Modi keeps silent By Nilanjana Bhowmick Washington Post

As India’s Muslims are lynched, Modi keeps silent

By Nilanjana Bhowmi


There is a silent but systematic slaughter against Muslims in progress in India. It’s not too late to call it out.



NEW DELHI — On June 23, three days before India celebrated Eid, 15-year-old Junaid Khan was stabbed to death by a group of men aboard a train. He was going home to Khandawli, a village in the north Indian state of Haryana, after shopping for new clothes in New Delhi, accompanied by his brother and a couple of friends. The mob mocked their skullcaps and taunted them for eating beef, before stabbing them.



Eid was sombre in Khandawli on Monday, as it was across the country. In a national first, scores of Muslims across the country offered their Eid prayers while wearing a black band, a symbol of protest against the killing of the teen as well as growing atrocities against Muslims in the country, which have been increasing since Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi took office three years ago. In September 2015, a Muslim man, Mohammad Akhlaq, was lynched in Dadri near the Indian capital, over rumours that he had killed a local cow and stored its meat in his refrigerator. The month after that, 16-year-old Zahid Rasool Bhattdied when vigilante groups attacked his truck with a bomb in Udhampur. In March 2017, suspected cattle traders Muhammed Majloom and Azad Khan were hanged in Latehar. In May, traders were thrashed in Malegaon, Maharashtra for allegedly storing beef. In Jharkhand in May, 19-year-old Mohammed Shalik was tied to a pole and beaten to death, reportedly over a romantic relationship with a Hindu girl. In May, two more Muslim men, Abu Hanifa and Riazuddin Ali, were killed for allegedly stealing cattle in Assam. More recently, on June 7, a Muslim man was attacked in Dhanbad, Jharkhand, on suspicion of transporting beef to an Iftar gathering. Two more cases of lynching over cow slaughter rumours were reported earlier this week in eastern India.

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On Sunday, before his first visit with President Trump, Modi addressed India through his radio program Mann Ki Baat (Heart-to-heart-talk). And while his monologue touched upon various topics, including yoga, toilets, sports, a meeting with the Queen, books as gifts and the … er … weather, Junaid Khan’s murder didn’t find a nano-second of air time.

Modi did not mention the more than a dozen cases of lynchings, mostly against Muslims, recorded in India since September last year, especially in states ruled by Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Modi also did not address the violence of the cow-vigilante groups, who often owe allegiance to the BJP or its ideological parent the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

And while the list grows longer every day, the violence against Muslims and cow-vigilante groups have not elicited a single tweet of condemnation from India’s social media savvy prime minister, who is quick to condemn atrocities all over the world. Modi’s silence, in fact, is beginning to feel like a redux of the Gujarat riots in 2002 which killed more than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims. For years he stayed silent, and when he spoke finally, he had compared the riots to a puppy being run over.

The Hindu Hitler

 Yogi Adityanath

The Hindu Hitler prepares to meet party leaders.

Photograph: Manish Swarup/AP

Amnesty International  released a statement Wednesday evening, calling the situation “deeply worrying” and accused Modi and other BJP leaders of not condemning the attacks and in fact to have “even justified the attacks at times.” Aakar Patel, executive director of Amnesty International India, said in a statement, “The Indian Prime Minister, senior BJP leaders and Chief Ministers must break their silence and unequivocally condemn the attacks.”

A soon-to-be-published report by the Mumbai-based Centre for Study of Society and Secularism and the U.K.-based Minority Rights Group International notes there has been a notable increase in hostility towards India’s religious minorities since the BJP government, led by Modi, came to power in May 2014 and began to actively promote Hindu nationalism.

According to the report, the volatile state of Uttar Pradesh in north India, site of the disputed Ayodhya Ram temple and where India witnessed one of its worst communal riots in 1992, saw a spike in communal violence since the BJP came to power in the state this year. The appointment of Yogi Adityanath, a Hindu hard-liner known for his controversial anti-Muslim views, as the chief minister of the state dismayed many at the time.

Modi’s silence over these attacks, the report says, has emboldened extremist right-wing groups. Recently, in another first, no BJP ministers attended the traditional Iftar gathering that the president of India hosts every year.

There is a silent but systematic slaughter against Muslims in progress in India. It’s not too late to call it out.

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Allama Iqbal Town,
Lahore.—-[CAMP OFFICE- 88]


“ HRI will issue the most comprehensive “FACT SHEET” in respect of constant and severe violations of human rights, keeping in view the fundamental rights of the general public. In this regard adequate and relevant facts are collected by the coordinators of HRI from all over the country, the rural as well as urban areas. At present the verifications of the collected facts are in process.

Furthermore, we are going to establish ”HUMAN RIGHTS AWARENESS FORUM” at country level and the branches thereof will be opened at district level” announced by Syed Anwar Aleemi, Advocate, Chairman HUMAN RIGHTS INTERNATIONAL-HRI. 

The main issues and observations are given here in under, which are under consideration of the “POLICY COMMITTEE OF HRI” told by Syed Anwar Aleemi, Advocate, – CHAIRMAN- HUMAN RIGHTS INTERNATIONAL- HRI.
1. In the process of the preparation of “FACT SHEET”  we  are compiling bitter facts in respect of different governmental institutions, prisons, hospitals, educational institutions, police stations, courts, income tax departments, excise and taxation offices, provincial and federal boards of revenues and all other departments working under district, provincial and federal governments. We have also decided to suggest the possible reforms for the rectification of anti-human designs prevailing in all the structure of the state for the betterment of the citizens of Pakistan.
All the coordinators of HRI working here at Pakistan have collected facts with adequate proofs along with irrefutable evidence in this regard. We believe that every citizen of the country has the right to know the realities and we are bound to unveil the existing facts.   
2. Keeping aside all threats to our lives we will continue to work for the awareness of human rights. We are determined to adopt all means and measures for the promotion of people’s consciousness about their fundamental rights as envisaged under our Constitution and Universal Charter of Human Rights as adopted by UNITED NATIONS. We want to make it clear to everybody that our motto is “LIVE FOR HUMANITY – DIE FOR HUMANITY.” We will not hesitate to prove it by our actions in future. We, the visible majority of the people of Pakistan are victims of injustices by the governing groups in past and at present in our beloved country.   
3. Our democracy at Pakistan has its worst style in its nature. Mere fictitious, false, fake and so-called democracy have no positive influences at all on our collective, social, economic and political lives of the nationals of Pakistan in any manner.Keeping aside all threats to our lives and non-cooperative behaviour of the higher-ups of Pakistan, we will continue our mission with our more affective and result oriented capabilities in the most peaceful manners.
Anyhow, we in Pakistan, will make all possible efforts for awareness of human rights as are determined by the Constitution of Pakistan by all means and measures as laid down under Constitution Of Pakistan. We should have to work to solidify our democratic system in the most positive way to achieve the goals as set out by the founders of Pakistan. No effort or practicable step will be left for the establishment of Pakistan as the real democratic and the most modern welfare state on globe.
4. The Ghost of terrorism is dancing in condemnable satanic style in almost all the street and bazaars of all the cities of Pakistan. Extreme poverty, gruesome hunger, condemnable fears, lack of opportunities to get the basic necessities of the lives, illiteracy, the curse of unemployment has become the order of day in our beloved country. Rulers are not fair towards the general people of Pakistan. It is the most tragic aspect of our politics. We will continue our struggle against the anti-human practices of all nature. We are determined to arrange rallies, public meetings and workshops at all levels to create general opinion against the usurpers of all the fundamental rights in all over the country.  
5.The most delicate issue having importance in this political era, the resolution of all the problems of all natures faced by the 200 millions of the people of Pakistan has become the sole responsibility of the factions who are enjoying power in Pakistan, without wasting further time in this regard.
Visible and the vast majority of the people of Pakistan are shouting for food, shelter, clothing, and other basics requirements of their lives. All administrative actions and to take all adequate legislative measures in this regard is the prime obligation of the highest administration of the country and all the concerned legislative bodies existing at federal as well as provincial levels. Now the rulers alone are on the wheel of new challenges faced by the country at present. The offices of President, Prime Minister along with his cabinet and allied members of Senate, National Assembly including Provincial Assemblies are bound to restore all the fundamental rights as provided by THE CONSTITUTION OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF PAKISTAN.
6. The government alone shall be bound, in accordance with The Constitution of Islamic Republic Of Pakistan, that the country shall be transformed into a “REAL WELFARE STATE” without any delay, otherwise the time shall bring them on the wheel of accountability in accordance with provisions of the Constitutions of Pakistan.  
7. Our national politics revolves around few old styled feudal-lords, capitalists and aristocratic type of conventional and politically professional families and personalities instead of the common people of Pakistan. This is the most tragic aspect of our national politics and our democracy. HRI condemn this mode of false and fake democracy.
8.The policies adopted by the government, and the existing political, administrative, economic, social, legal and judicial system all are not in line with the vast interests of the common citizens of the country which should be seriously understood by the responsible authorities.  All wise, sane, and possible steps in the interests of general citizens of Pakistan should be taken at all costs for the benefit of the general public of Pakistan. Not a single political party, group of political parties or any faction of power grabbers of Pakistan can claim itself the sole ruler of the country in any stretch of the philosophy of “DEMOCRACY”.

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