Fast Track to Troubling Times: The Ghadar Alliance

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A promise fulfilled? File photo from scroll.in of what was left in the wake of Modi’s helicopter on the election campaign trail (Image by Ravi Mishra)

The first 100 days of the Modi government points to emergent disaster, says this report by The Ghadar Alliance, a US-based educational/watchdog coalition created by concerned citizens in the wake of the BJP victory. The report points to the Economy, Religious Extremism and Human Rights as areas of biggest concern, and is released on the eve of Modi’s visit to the USA as Prime Minister of India.

The entire report can be downloaded at Fast Track to Troubling Times.

In a press release, The Ghadar Alliance said:

The report is the first independent ‘people’s’ report to be published since Modi came into office, and identifies the economy, religious extremism and human rights as grave areas of concern. “We have been very careful and meticulous in collecting data only from public sources to build an evidence-based and fully data-driven report,” said Raja Swamy, economic anthropologist and one of the authors of the report. “When it comes to the economy, our report shows that the new administration wants to eliminate all democratic protections in favor of corporate giveaways and ripoffs. One example of this are the amendments that the Modi regime has proposed to the Land Acquisition Act of 2013 that do away with meaningful safeguards for those losing land, especially for India’s poor, marginal peasantry and indigenous peoples. The proposed amendments accept in-toto all corporate demands and eliminate existing safeguards. From the evidence available, can we not conclude that the minimal protections for ordinary people are being wiped out to favor corporations?” he added. The report is replete with such detail as it compares the Modi budget with the previous United Progressive Alliance budget, and points to such facts as the BJP government’s plan to raise four times more money through the ‘sale of State assets’ than the previous government did.

The report highlights the empowerment of violent gangs of the supremacist Hindu Right under the Modi dispensation. In the three months since Modi took charge, there have been over 600 cases of anti-minority violence in one single state, Uttar Pradesh (a state in the North), and several cases of forced ‘reconversion’ of Dalits (India’s so-called untouchable castes) to Hinduism. “If there is one thing that is clear already it is that under Modi, Hindu supremacist gangs will virtually rule the streets. There is a palpable sense of insecurity today among minorities, Dalits and women as non-state actors have turned hyper-aggressive, and Modi, through his consistent silence and refusal to hold offenders accountable, has given tacit approval” said Anu Mandavilli of the San Jose Peace and Justice Center and a co-founder of the Ghadar Alliance. “The privileging of economic growth as the primary goal functions to dictate an amnesia about Modi’s Gujarat record with US investors eager to capitalize on the Indian market,” added Professor Snehal Shingavi, also a co-founder of the Ghadar Alliance. “And for many of us born and raised in a racialized US context, the targeting of minorities in India by Hindu reactionaries uncomfortably corresponds to our own experiences with anti-immigrant racism here.”

The report compares the first 100 days of the new government with Modi’s 12 years of rule in Gujarat. “Examining Modi’s first 100 days in the context of his record in Gujarat reveals a number of disturbing parallels, and these parallels legitimize the report’s predictive capacity,” said Mandavilli. The report is the first in a series of actions that the Ghadar Alliance is initiating to keep a consistent and critical focus on the BJP/RSS from outside India. The Founding Committee of the Alliance is intergenerational, of multiple faiths, of diverse professions and geography. “We represent the true diversity of India rather than the narrow homogeneity of Modi supporters lining up to welcome him here in the US,” said Dr. Swamy.

For More Information Contact:

Anu Mandavilli: 408-480-5805 or email at anu@ghadaralliance.org

Snehal Shingavi: 510- 484-5242 or email: snehal100@hotmail.com

Raja Swamy: 864-804-0216 or email: raja@ghadaralliance.org

2 thoughts on “Fast Track to Troubling Times: The Ghadar Alliance”

  1. The unanimous opinion of folks here is that the NaMo administration will bring about a wholescale marginalisation (if not massacre) of minorities; dismantle every vestige of the welfare state and remove every legal and constitutional protection available to the poor in order to enrich his cronies. There is of course another set of folks elsewhere who believe that under NaMo’s watchful eyes India wud become the next Switzerland and that Indians of all castes and communities will sing the kumbaya together.

    Would it however be too radical a suggestion to make that neither will happen-that perhaps under the NaMo govt, India may grow a bit faster economically but be a bit more unequal and a bit less inclusive? But nothing too drastic on either side……

    Regards

    Like

    1. Majumdar, please note that this report as well as innumerable other posts on Kafila are based on events that have already happened and policies that have already been inaugurated. You need not speculate so furiously as to which path of many this government is taking India on – the drastic nature of the changes are so visible as to make your “radical” suggestion simply, well, simple-minded.
      From arresting an Imam for a statement on the garba (from which Muslims have been banned in any case!) which was far less hateful than Adityanath’s many pronouncements on his election campaign, which he carried on with despite an EC ruling; to opening up all ecological constraints for unbridled corporate loot, how much more do you need to see before you abandon this suave, “oh-you-extremists, why cant you be reasonable like me” attitude?
      it’s pretty “drastic”, Mazumdar, wake up to it.

      Like

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