Category Archives: religion

जेनयू की सफाई पर स्मृति ईरानी की सफाई: नियति शर्मा

Guest post by NIYATI SHARMA

लोकसभा में स्मृति ईरानी जी की सफाई उर्फ़ भाषण बहुत भावुक, मनोरंजक और प्रभावशाली था। लोग उन्हें ‘आयरन लेडी’ का खिताब दे रहे हैं- यह उनके तर्क के लिए या उनके तेवर के लिए, या फिर उनके यह कहने के लिए की वो अपना सर काट के मायावती जी के चरणों में रख देंगी, पता लगाना थोड़ा मुश्किल है । सोचा था स्मृति जी कुछ सवालों का जवाब देंगी पर असल में मिली एक लम्बी, मेलोड्रामाटिक सफाई जिससे उन्होंने अपनी सरकार की सारी गलतियों पे पर्दा डाल दिया।ऐसी स्तिथि में हम मजबूर हो गए हैं की स्मृति जी से जो सवाल पूछे जाएँ वो तथ्य-सम्बंधित होने के साथ साथ अति भावनात्मक भी हों।

स्मृति जी के अभिनय के सारे सालों का अनुभव उनके भाषण में साफ़ दिखाए दिया। लोकसभा में स्मृति जी के हाव भाव से आक्रोश टपक रहा था पर क्या उन्हें इतना क्रोधित होने का हक़ है? स्मृति जी का यह मानना है की उनके ऊपर काफी बेबुनियादी आरोप लगे हैं, पर यह मामला स्मृति ईरानी जी के बारे में नहीं है, यह मामला उन मासूम छात्रों के बारे में है जिनकी ज़िन्दगी को उन्होंने दांव पर लगा दिया है। आखिर उन ‘बच्चों’ का क्या जिनके ऊपर उन्होंने और उनकी सरकार ने पिछले कुछ दिनों में अनगिनत आरोप लगाये हैं? स्मृति ईरानी जी तो मंत्री हैं, अगर आरोप लगे भी, तो उनकी ज़िन्दगी बर्बाद नहीं होगी, पर जिस क्रूरता से सरकार और मीडिया ने छात्रों का चरित्र-हनन किया, वह कभी भी इससे उभर नहीं पाएंगे। कन्हैया, उमर और अनिर्बान न ही मंत्री हैं जिनके पास कोई राजनैतिक सहारा है और न ही उनके परिवार इतने धनी हैं की वह अपना जीवन, अपनी इज़्ज़त पुननिर्मित कर पाएं। स्मृति जी, आप तो सिर्फ अपने बारे में सोच रही थीं की आप पर और आपकी परफॉरमेंस पर क्या क्या सवाल उठाये गए, क्या आपने एक बार भी सोचा की इन छात्रों के पास आगे ज़िन्दगी में सफाई देने का कोई मौका नहीं होगा? क्या आपने, माँ होने के नाते, यह सोचा की यह छात्र अब कभी भी साधारण जीवन नहीं जी पाएंगे?

Continue reading जेनयू की सफाई पर स्मृति ईरानी की सफाई: नियति शर्मा

A Review of Purifying the Land of the Pure – Pakistan’s Religious Minorities : Guest Post by Karthik Venkatesh

Guest Post by Karthik Venkatesh

Pakistan was created as a homeland for the sub-continent’s Muslims and yet, even before it had formally taken birth, its founder in a famous speech delivered on August 11, 1947 stated his intention to establish a secular nation where religion would be relegated to the private sphere and the public discourse would be given to pressing development issues. Jinnah’s first cabinet consisted of an Ahmadi (considered by orthodox Muslims as a heretical sect), Sir Zafarullah Khan and Jogendranath Manadal, a Hindu from East Pakistan. Jinnah himself was a Shia while the majority of Pakistan’s Muslims were Sunnis. Roughly one-quarter of Pakistan was non-Muslim at the time of independence and secularism seemed a realistic option. Also, Jinnah’s actions appeared to imply that it would actually be practised. But events proved otherwise.

During Jinnah’s time itself, as Ispahani adeptly documents, an unhealthy nexus had begun to develop between politicians and extremist religious groups. His death in 1948 merely served to accentuate this process. In March 1949, PM Liaquat Ali Khan moved the Objectives Resolution in the Constituent Assembly which set the tone for the Islamisation of Pakistan. Continue reading A Review of Purifying the Land of the Pure – Pakistan’s Religious Minorities : Guest Post by Karthik Venkatesh

Does the Nation Really Even Want to Know? Shweta Radhakrishnan

This is a guest post by SHWETA RADHAKRISHNAN

I noticed yesterday, a tweet from Anupam Kher where he compared state action over the events of the last few weeks, as a kind of “pest control” – required, of course to keep the house clean. His exact tweet is – “Gharon mein pest control hota hai to cockroach, keede makode ityadi bahar nikalte hain. ghar saaf hota hai. waise hi aajkal desh ka pest control chal raha hai.”

The similarity of this thought to Hitler’s on ethnic cleansing hasn’t gone unnoticed (look at Rajdeep Sardesai’s tweet and this article – http://www.jantakareporter.com/india/anupam-kher-hitler-modi/38514) and I’m sure much more will be written about it in the days to come. Anupam Kher’s inability to develop a logical argument or even notice the illogicality of his own actions has never ceased to surprise me, but the casualness with which he endorses state violence is interesting. But mere tweeting is not sedition. Do I find this tweet distasteful, offensive and also legitimizing state and mob violence? Yes, I do. Am I worried by the sentiment expressed in this tweet? Yes, I am. Am I additionally worried because this is not a man, sitting in an obscure corner somewhere, just airing his views, but a well known personality whose words seem to garner some weird kind of legitimacy because of his status as a Hindi film actor? Yes, I am. Do I think he should be arrested? No. Continue reading Does the Nation Really Even Want to Know? Shweta Radhakrishnan

In the Name of the ‘Nation’: Vidya K. Subramanian and C. J. Kuncheria

This is a guest post by VIDYA K S and C J KUNCHERIA

“Don’t you dare speak over me when I am speaking of Lance Naik Hanumanthapa! We’re proud of him and we’re ashamed of you!,” screamed Arnab Goswami at Umar Khalid, the JNU student at the centre of unfolding events at the university. Hundreds of thousands of self-proclaimed nationalists cheered at that instant, and many more did as the clip went viral over social media. The death of the soldier, one of the 869 who have been killed in the last four years by the punishing weather on Siachen, had been conveniently used to invoke a cathartic nationalism. Continue reading In the Name of the ‘Nation’: Vidya K. Subramanian and C. J. Kuncheria

University of Texas Students and Faculty stand with JNU

 

We, the undersigned, students, scholars, and faculty of the University of Texas at Austin, stand in solidarity with the students, faculty, and staff at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi against the illegal and unconscionable crackdown by police. We demand an immediate end to all police action on campus, a withdrawal of all frivolous charges against the President of JNU Students’ Union, Kanhaiya Kumar, and other students, as well as an end to the campaign of harassment and intimidation against students at the university. With them, we affirm the autonomy of the university as a non-militarized space for freedom of thought and expression. Accordingly, we condemn police presence on campus and the harassment of students on the basis of their political beliefs.  Continue reading University of Texas Students and Faculty stand with JNU

Statement on the Events at HCU and JNU From Faculty of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences

 

 

We, the undersigned, are deeply shocked and dismayed by the processes that led to the suicide of Rohith Vemula at HCU in January and the ongoing attacks on students and faculty of JNU. At Hyderabad Central University, RohithVemula a Dalit research scholar was labelled as anti-national and driven to suicide in January through systematic persecution. At Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi over the past few days, Kanhaiya Kumar, the President of the JNU Students Union is held in police custody on the trumped up charge of sedition. On February 15, 2016, the police stood by as mute spectators while a group of lawyers and hooligan elements attacked students and faculty of JNU who had gone to the Patiala House courts in Delhi in solidarity with Kanhaiya Kumar who was to be produced there. Continue reading Statement on the Events at HCU and JNU From Faculty of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences

Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa! : To A Student from CDS

Dear Student from CDS who pasted the posters criticising  our collective effort to stand with JNU

I write in response to the views that you expressed on those posters. First of all, let me tell you how much I’d have appreciated if you expressed those views openly right from the beginning, so that we could have had a proper debate. I do wish we stopped scribbling comments on each others’ posters – this is an open campus, and surely, we don’t practice the Sangh Parivar’s intolerance of a contrary opinion. No one, I assure you, will harm you in any way, and I am sure all my fellow teachers, students, and non-teaching staff will join me in assuring you thus.

Continue reading Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa! : To A Student from CDS