Thursday, May 6, 2010

Hyderabad, City Of Conspirators

Even 67 years after independence, Hyderabad is hit by every possible disturbance including conspiracies for scams, riots, bomb blasts, fake encounters, politics in religion, separate statehood and vote bank politics. This time it was another communal incident enacted for the people of Hyderabad to shatter the peace and harmony of the city. Riots were instigated and Section 144 was imposed in areas covering 25 police stations and the common man was as usual the sufferer. An analysis.

The Beginning Of The Hidden Agenda

This story starts on February 24th, the day Milad-Un-Nabi (birthday of Prophet) celebrations were carried out with full reverence , with the support from the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) a political party, and the entire old city look as if painted green with flags and banners. One month later, these flags were removed to put up saffron flags marking the Sri Ram Navami celebrations on March 24th in Madannapet (near Saidabad Colony) and a procession took place which was followed by the provocative speech of Acharya Dharmendra, a leader belonging to hindutva’s radical outfit Vishwa Hindu Parishad. A few months earlier RSS supremo Sarsanchalak Mohan Bhagawat was in the city where a big parade of swayamsevaks was organised. Some days prior to the riots, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leaders like Praveen Togadia and Dharmendra Acharya had visited the city.

Curfew In Old City

On March 27th (Saturday), organisers of Hanuman Jayanti celebrations in Moosa Bowli in the Old City tried to hoist their flags and banners, removing the ones that had been put up for Milad-un-Nabi, sparking heated arguments, that were followed by clashes. The swift manner in which the trouble spread with mobs throwing stones at each other and places of worship being damaged pointed to prior planning.

This time it was venomous as the Indian fascists painted the twin cities to saffron with huge banners, festoons and flags. Usually it used to be an occasion where a few hundreds would take out a rally observing the Jayanthi but this time a massive mobilisation of around 5000 persons on motorbikes was undertaken. Even the route was changed in order to pass through minority community areas in the new city.

The police reacted late and by that time around 13 people were injured. On the following Sunday, the BJP state unit president G Kishan Reddy and Himayatnagar MLA Baddam Bal Reddy were prevented from visiting the Peepal Hanuman temple in Moosabowli by the police, where clashes took place on Saturday night. Angered, the locals attacked houses and shops of the other community who retaliated with equal vengeance. Attempts by MIM legislators and BJP leaders to pacify the mob turned out to be futile and violence broke out eventually.
A two-hundred-year-old Masjid-e-Mahboob Shahi was attacked on the 27th midnight by the mob. According to a research scholar of Jamia Nizamia who resides in a room of the Masjid, when the green flags were removed to place saffron flags, some Muslims objected to it because they still had to celebrate another festival and then the arguments took place between the two groups. Suddenly a mob started stone pelting on Mandirs and Masjids.

Politicians should not be allowed to use religion for political benefits. There is political hand behind whatever happened in Hyderabad and a factor of competition between green and saffron flags.

This Temple Gowshala was started in the year 1996. It is located in the thickly populated Muslim area but never had any problem, local people are always cooperative. But that day the people who came were unknown. He also said, during the attack some local Muslim people came to protect the temple and Gowshala.

Begum Bazaar is another area where Masjids were severely damaged on 27th March 2010. Masjid-E-Mohammedia, Gandhi Galli, Begum Bazaar is the most badly damaged Masjid. Four tombs were demolished, roof top, walls, main gate, doors, windows were all broken; flooring, Qur’an, religious scriptures, praying carpets were all burnt. As per official record 2.50 lakhs worth of property was damaged.

As per the care taker of this Masjid, this area was once populated by the Pathans and Arabs but at present it is dominated by the Marwaris. Already some portion of this Masjid is encroached by a Marwari. There is a big water tank in the Masjid and when the Holi festival falls that tank is occupied by the Marwari community and filled with colours, so on that day the caretaker and others have to leave the Masjid premises and go away to avoid any untoward incident. He also said that Muslims always adjust themselves by withdrawing processions and other programmes. But the extremists of other community are not cooperating and instead becoming aggressive.

Sources tell us that intelligence agencies have got information that the Karnataka BJP minister and Bellary strongman allegedly funded the radical Hindu outfits to orchestrate the riots in the city.

Due to the attack and fear the Muslim population is forced to migrate to the old city area. The areas of the Masjid are shrinking and the areas of Mandir are expanding. Another Masjid-E-Kolsawadi in Begum Bazaar was burnt completely and cow dung was dumped in the premises. The official loss is estimated at Rs. three lakhs in this Masjid. As per the information, Ten Masjids of Begum Bazar were severely damaged and burnt. The land value of this area is very costly in business point of view and is mostly dominated by business community who are Marwaris.

Further violence spread to nearby areas and one person died in a stabbing incident. Soon rumours aided by SMSs spread like wildfire. Stone pelting started & vehicles were set ablaze. Sporadic incidents of violence continued at Gulzar Houz where cameras of some media photographers were damaged, and also in Chatri naka, Sha ali banda, Shamsher gunj and Parthiwada. Stone pelting also occured at the Gol Mosque in Siddiamber Bazar after the afternoon prayers, and the temple opposite the mosque was also pelted as retaliation. The agitation spread to Gowliguda Chaman as well. The areas Siddiamber Bazar, Afzalgunj, Gowliguda, Begum Bazar, Kalapathar, Chatrinaka, Shah-Ali Banda, Puranapul, Afzalgunj, M J Market, Shamshergunj and Moosabowli were all reported to have witnessed trouble in the Old City.

Curfew For Common, Man Rally For Hanuman

The Hindu fundamentalist forces' efforts to utilise the situation to create terror among minorities and spread communal polarisation beyond the old city area were facilitated by the weak state administration. These forces led by Bajrang Dal and Hindu Vahini, used Hanuman Jayanthi, which fell on March 30, to fulfill their aim.

This time it was venomous as the Indian fascists painted the twin cities to saffron with huge banners, festoons and flags. Usually it used to be an occasion where a few hundreds would take out a rally observing the Jayanthi but this time a massive mobilisation of around 5000 persons on motorbikes was undertaken. Even the route was changed in order to pass through minority community areas in the new city.

Congress MP from Nizamabad Madhu Yashki Goud referring to the 1990 communal riots said that the riots were a conspiracy by leaders from Andhra and Rayalaseema regions as those opposing the demand for statehood to Telangana had been warning Muslims that communal tensions would rise in the separate state.

Brandishing saffron headscarves, saffron flags and lathis, this menacing crowd was granted royal passage by the police and administration at a time when curfew was still in place in the old city and communal tensions were at a peak. At the head of the procession was a trolley on which were a cow and calf, with a banner proclaiming 'protection of cow'. Their intention of this show of strength was to terrorise the minorities and spread the clashes to the new city was clear to everyone except the government.

As the rally reached Musheerabad area, the bikers branched off from the main rally into the lanes and by lanes housing the minorities and raised slogans against them. They then rejoined the main rally. They beat up indiscriminately anyone they suspected of being Muslims. The shops with Muslim names lining the main road were vandalised and the owners beaten up. The small dargahs were also not spared.

The rally reached further and the desired impact was achieved with Muslims hearing about these attacks, came on to the roads and indulged in stone throwing. The police realising the potential trouble with the rally, forced all shops on the route to down their shutters! However, attacks occurred even in Secunderabad area, which is a rarity even in the worst of communal riots in the past.

The involvement of Raju in the riots has created a wrong image of TDP among the Muslims. Now it is upon the party Chief Chandrababu Naidu to take the right step by expelling Raju from the party or will he repeat the same mistake as he did after the Gujarat riots.

It is the same police which stopped social activists from taking out a peace rally the next day from Sundarayya Park in the city. The violence of Secunderabad has its echo in the old city. Around 4pm, trouble broke out near Begum Bazaar when a group of VHP cadres insisted on leading the rally from Puranapul to Gowliguda despite not having permission. Soon the incident of stone pelting and burning of three mosques took place. The Rapid action Force somehow managed to disperse the mob, but later they again reorganized themselves and attacked Begum Bazaar Police outpost besides damaging few vehicles. Then the police burst teargas shells and fired rubber bullets to control the fiery mob.

A Shiv Hanuman Mandir was targeted in Tabdun area where stone pelting took place due to which the gate and door was damaged. According to the caretaker some unknown people came on bikes and started pelting stones on the Mandir and ran away.

The effect is multiple, the government needs to work and put things in place so that such incidents do not occur. More than 40 percent of the labour and work force has to work on daily wages and earn their bread for themselves and their families.

One Shiv Mandir Gowshala was also targeted. According to the Manager of the Gowshala, on 30th March evening at 5.30 to 6pm, an unknown mob came suddenly and started stone pelting, burnt the jute bags and bikes. In the fire three cows and a calf were burnt.
This Temple Gowshala was started in the year 1996. It is located in the thickly populated Muslim area but never had any problem, local people are always cooperative. But that day the people who came were unknown. He also said, during the attack some local Muslim people came to protect the temple and Gowshala.

The attack was not planned and it happened suddenly with the intention to create fear among people, but not to take anyone’s life. He also said that whatever disturbance happened in the city was just the result of competition of tying flags in various parts of the city. He informed us that the Home Minister visited the Gowshala immediately after the incident and provided all kinds of facilities such as curfew passes, bringing feeding material of cows from other areas etc. He expressed his full confidence on local people. But police registered the cases against one hundred and twenty Muslim youth and arrested many of them.

The People of Andhra Pradesh are waiting Mr. Roshiah and Mr. A K Khan. The public wants answers. The police have launched a high profile manhunt for M Vaikuntam who is alleged to be involved in the riots and is absconding.

Masjid-E-Bhatti Aahak, namely Syed Shah Karimullah Shah Quadri was yet another target of the rioters. This Masjid came under attack on the evening of 30th March. The front door was burnt badly, the caretaker who stays beside the Masjid was threatened and was targeted, and had to escape by jumping the back wall along with her 5 year old nephew. She was given shelter by a neighbor who was a Hindu lawyer. He assured her full protection and when the mob dispersed she was safely dropped back at her house.

BJP Minister Funded The Riots

Sources tell us that intelligence agencies have got information that the Karnataka BJP minister and Bellary strongman allegedly funded the radical Hindu outfits to orchestrate the riots in the city. “The intelligence source say that the minister, who runs mines in AP, had developed a grouse against the K. Rosaiah government for its swift action in curbing illegal mining and transport of ore and for its cancellation of mining leases. “Using his money power, this minister had reportedly arranged funding to different outfits in the city,” said the source.

The Vijayawada Congress MP, Mr Lagadapati Rajagopal alleged that the riots were the handiwork of the BJP. “It is all happening after Mr Kishen Reddy took the reins of the party in the state,” he said. “The BJP wants to prove its existence in Hyderabad through this.”

Telangana Angle In Riots

In a major embarrassment for the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh, a section of its leaders from Telangana openly charged their own party colleagues from two other regions of being involved in the communal riots in Hyderabad. Congress MP from Nizamabad Madhu Yashki Goud referring to the 1990 communal riots said that the riots were a conspiracy by leaders from Andhra and Rayalaseema regions as those opposing the demand for statehood to Telangana had been warning Muslims that communal tensions would rise in the separate state.

Rivals of former chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, both within the Congress and in the opposition, had alleged that he was behind the riots to dislodge Reddy from power. Senior Congress legislator Shankar Rao also alleged that those opposing Chief Minister Rosaiah were behind the riots to defame him and his government. Their allegations evoked sharp reaction from Congress legislators belonging to Andhra and Rayalaseema regions, who demanded disciplinary action against them.

Congress sources said party's state unit president D. Srinivas spoke to Yashki, Rao and another MP V. Hanumantha Rao warning them against making any allegations over riots.
Will TDP Take Action Against Corporator Raju?

On the charges of being involved in the riots the Hyderabad Police arrested Telugu Desam Party Mangalhat Division corporator Raju Singh. He was evading police dragnet since the communal clashes had taken place. He had tried to surrender himself before the senior police officials but the on demand of the Muslim community leaders,the police arrested him. Just after his arrest he was handed over to the Special Investigation Team.

The involvement of Raju in the riots has created a wrong image of TDP among the Muslims. Now it is upon the party Chief Chandrababu Naidu to take the right step by expelling Raju from the party or will he repeat the same mistake as he did after the Gujarat riots.

Naidu, a three-time CM of Andhra Pradesh, had not seen in his wildest dream that he will lose Andhra if he did not withdraw support from NDA, as Muslims had demanded from him, after Gujarat riots were orchestrated by a BJP-run government. But Muslims abandoned TDP and it directed the party to a continuous decline from where there seems no sign of recovery. Now TDP is struggling to find a place in the state politics.

Curfew And There After

After riots, it’s curfew which is the cause of hardship to the common man. 13 days after the curfew was initially imposed in the old city of Hyderabad, it was entirely lifted only on the night of Saturday, 10th April.

The police made 272 arrests after registering 170 cases in the communal clashes, which claimed 3 lives and in which 150 people were injured. The people of Old City underwent losses which would be difficult to cover-up in the next three to six months.

A trader, Ram Chahran, a whole sale dealer of oils was complaining of loss of contracts with few of his suppliers and consumers. The New city also got effected as nearly 25 to 30 percent of the work force which works in the new city area comes from Old city, like the technicians, drivers, painters, carpenters, category 2 and category 3 employees. Also the IT professionals come from Old city especially in IT companies like GE, Infosys and Google. That also puts brakes on the normal functioning of New City offices and business centers, malls, theatres and trading centers.

The effect is multiple, the government needs to work and put things in place so that such incidents do not occur. More than 40 percent of the labour and work force has to work on daily wages and earn their bread for themselves and their families.

Isratunnissa, whose daughter was admitted in the hospital for her delivery suffered a lot because it was a maternity hospital and men were not allowed to stay and after section 144 was implemented. This family like many others could not have any male support to buy food or other needs. She added that it was like house arrest for them in the hospital.
Yunus Ali was badly beaten up by police when he went out to buy milk for his 7 month old child. Elsewhere in the city, defying curfew and the threat of falling victims to rioting mobs, a mother and her two daughters, walked nearly five kilometers to secure the release of her son from police custody.

Kishore Shinde, a 16-year old intermediate student, had ventured a few yards out of his house at Lal Darwaza when the police picked him up and locked him up in Charminar police station. His wailing mother rushed to the police station and showed medical reports that the boy suffered from regular convulsions. Her efforts bore fruit as the policemen released the boy with a warning. Their return journey however was smooth as a media vehicle dropped them home. All was not well, though.

Although violence was curbed, the plight of the local residents in getting their daily bread remained at its worst. Faced with skyrocketing prices for basic needs like vegetables, ration & milk, low wage citizens had nowhere to turn to for alternate sources. Many of them were stranded and continued to stay in queues even past the curfew time in a bid to buy what they could afford. The curfew also claimed the lives of two people, as timely medical treatment for their cardiac arrest was not reached. Kedarinath (28), a resident of Kumarwaadi near Chandrayangutta, was pronounced dead by the time the ambulance carrying him and maneuvering through the severely secured areas reached the hospital. Another victim, Manjula Bai (55) of Shibligunj near Hussaini Alam, developed complications and lost her life as her relatives made unfruitful frantic efforts to get medicines.

Time to expose the conspirators

Hyderabad the city of charm, now has become a hub for communal and political conspirators. When I travelled for the coverage in curfew affected area it seemed to me that the city was sliding back into lawlessness. One group is conspiring for the vote bank of the old city on other hand the Indian fascists are conspiring and looking for another possible Gujarat or Karnataka. The common man now has to make his stand clear by sidelining these conspirators.

The so called mainstream media showed great interest in covering issue of turns and twists in Sania-Shoaib marriage saga in Hyderabad

Much needs to be done and the detractors have to get a message loud and clear, the time has come to expose the perpetrators and criminals. The People of Andhra Pradesh are waiting Mr. Roshiah and Mr. A K Khan. The public wants answers. The police have launched a high profile manhunt for M Vaikuntam who is alleged to be involved in the riots and is absconding.
Three persons, Vaikuntam, a Telugu Desam corporator and a Bharatiya Janata Party corporator, are suspected of being involved in the trouble in Begum Bazar area during Bajrang Dal's procession, due to which violence spread to new city areas and curfew had to be imposed.

Raju Singh, a member of Hindu Vahini and other similar organisations, was involved in the first incident of violence at Moosa Bowli.

If we start digging one tunnel leads to anti Telangana conspiracy, one tunnel lead to conspiracy against the CM of Andhra, one tunnel which is long but confirms it roots from Karnataka’s Reddys and one leads to few persons like Thomas Macaulay of free India, who implement their agenda of divide and rule. It’s high time to expose the conspirators. Let the veil be lifted from the faces of those who did this heinous act.

By: Mohammed Tanveer

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Effect Of Pre-Marital Affairs On Children

A three-judge bench of the Apex Court while reserving its judgement on a special leave petition filed by south Indian actress Khusboo said that pre marital sex done with the consent of two adults was not an offence, rather it is right to life. Khusboo had sought that 22 criminal cases filed against her after she allegedly endorsed pre-marital sex in interviews to various magazines in 2005, be quashed. The writer, a paediatrician based in Texas, USA analyses how the affairs without marriage affect a child.

I was shocked to read the observations of the honourable Judges of the Supreme Court of India endorsing the views of actor Kushboo on the issue of pre-marital sex. I have been living in the U.S. for the last 35 years. I have seen the “emotional trauma” a child undergoes when the mother is unable to identify the father. Such a child has low self-esteem and its economic performance is poor when caught in the legal battles of paternity rights and rejections. The result: the child lives with rejection, rejecting himself or herself, building up anger towards the parents and is a boiling volcano that will erupt anytime. These children grow up with a variety of abnormalities — Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Learning Disability (LD) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Bipolar Depression. We now have research proof that brain networks connect after birth till five years of age determining the behavioural pathways in the future in a child. All are the result of early childhood experiences.

In a morally chaotic world, India should set an example by promoting morality and integrity, not permissiveness in sexuality. All religions agree that life is a gift of God. Human beings are the only ones gifted with rationality to distinguish the right from wrong, express feelings, reflect and take the right decision. Animals do not have social responsibility. No schooling is needed for them.

Carnal pleasures are not the purpose of human relationship and marriage. The highest purpose of man-woman relationship is to effectively plan for raising good children in a socially acceptable structure and to have companionship in life and for social protection.

Encouraging sexual relationships with the co-living prior to marriage leads to what the western society is now regretting. The guy loses interest in the girl he has a relationship with, as another girl attracts his attention for whatever reason.

Encouraging sexual relationships with the co-living prior to marriage leads to what the western society is now regretting. The guy loses interest in the girl he has a relationship with, as another girl attracts his attention for whatever reason. The girl tries to save the relationship by getting pregnant. The guy walks out of the life of the child and the mother. The mother looks for another support and that man will not accept this child and this child will not accept the new guy. Anger builds up and this leads to emotional and physical abuse as well. The child grows up with insecurity and the mother loses interest in the child as a result of the failures and depression.

Leave alone the moral angle, think about the social chaos that will result in a highly populated country like India that does not provide much systemic or societal by way of counselling or treatment for people in such trauma. The crime scene will escalate, besides AIDS / HIV and other sexually transmitted illnesses. Level-headed people and organisations should therefore, get together to avert impending disasters that will result from such deviant social mores. Otherwise, our children will go astray. What an insult to India and all that it stands for! What an insult to the spiritual wealth that we share with the world.

By: Dr Meena Chintapalli

From: The Hindu

Council of States Disappoints Sarkozy

The French Council of State has said that there is no legal scope to put complete ban on burqa. A report.

The Council of State, France’s top administrative court, has said there was no legal way Paris could completely outlaw full Islamic veils in public. This is a major setback to the French President, Mr. Sarkozy who hit the headlines as the advocate of complete ban on Islamic veil.

However, it would have been even more embarrassing had the councils ruling occurred after a law was passed in this issue. The Council usually rules on the legal conformity of new laws after they have been passed.

“Taking the advice of the council in advance is an unusual step, which the government did take to avoid the embarrassment of passing a stern law amid protests from French Muslims and other groups and then seeing it rejected by the top administrative court,” reads an article on Reuter blogs.

Mr. Sarkozy had said that, “The full veil is contrary to the dignity of women. The response is to ban it. The Government will put forward a draft law prohibiting it.” However he had not given any details, though, because he was waiting for the Council of State’s opinion.

The issue has been at the centre of complex and sometimes heated debate in France in recent months, but it wasn’t clear until now how far French and European law would allow the state to go.

The council in its report, presented on March 30, “There appears to the Council of State to be no legally unchallengeable justification for carrying out such a ban.”

It has also warned the government that it cannot take some of the giant steps the politicians want, and spelled out some precisely defined measures that should be constitutional.

“The full veil is contrary to the dignity of women. The response is to ban it. The Government will put forward a draft law prohibiting it.”

The Council also said that at certain points the women may be asked to not hide their faces. “However, the Council of State believes that public security and the fight against fraud, reinforced by the requirements of some public services, would be likely to justify an obligation to keep one’s face uncovered either in certain places or in performing certain procedures.”

It noted that full facial veils were already banned for civil servants and in schools, both on the basis of France’s separation of church and state (laïcité), and that managers could ban them for employees if they were deemed an impediment to the “good functioning” of the business.

But there are procedures that would require an uncovered face, it said, such as identity controls, photographs for picture IDs and legal acts such as marriage, voting, university exams, medical treatment or the handing over of children to mothers at the end of the school day.

Nevertheless, it does not mean that full veil should be banned rather women may be asked to uncover their faces on the certain occasions.

Access to certain places such as banks, jewellery shops, some sports events, consulates and airport departure lounges would also require an uncovered face, as does access to certain services such as buying drinks linked to a minimum age limit.

Nevertheless, it does not mean that full veil should be banned rather women may be asked to uncover their faces on the certain occasions.

“Public security cannot be a basis for a general ban on only the full veil, since no specific inconvenience is associated with it as such. A limited ban on the full veil would be fragile in terms of the principle of non-discrimination, and probably difficult to impose,” the report added.

It said the argument that full veils violate a woman’s dignity and the principle of equality between the sexes “could hardly apply in this case, even if they both have solid constitutional foundations and very strong jurisprudential applications”.

The Council also knocked down two of the most frequently used arguments by supporters of a full ban. It said that France’s trademark laïcité cannot be used as a legal basis to ban full veils in public, because it applies only to the relationship between public services and religions or followers of religions. It said the argument that full veils violate a woman’s dignity and the principle of equality between the sexes “could hardly apply in this case, even if they both have solid constitutional foundations and very strong jurisprudential applications”.

The supporters of a full “burqa ban” are not taking this Council recommendation lying down. Jean-François Copé, the parliamentary leader for Sarkozy’s UMP party, said the National Assembly didn’t have to follow the Council’s advice. Another staunch supporter of a full ban, the UMP deputy Jacques Myard, said the “pusillanimous opinion of the Council of State … is and remains only an opinion.”

(With Inputs from Reuter)


The Sharjah courts verdict awarding death penalty to 17 Indians for murdering a Pakistani in the UAE has surprised not only the politicians but also the media. Efforts are being made to convince the honorouble court to withdraw this verdict.

“Nowhere in the world have 17 persons been awarded death for killing one man”, said Punjab local bodies Minister Mr. Manoranjan Kalia. He added that a legal garb had been given to an illogical verdict.

The families of the victims asked the Indian government, with full support of the media, to intervene in the case and the latter has assured legal assistance.

It was in this context that an english daily published a news article in its Bangalore edition which has a picture of a mosque. According to the news, in all fifty people(50) were arrested in connection with the murder of which thirty three (33) including one Mr. Arvinder Singh were released. “I was in Sharjah for one-and-a-half years. My cousin and I worked as labourers. Around 2:30am on that morning, the police arrested us. We weren’t told why and were asked to be silent. Later, we learnt that a case was registered against us. I was imprisoned for three months and then released,” the newspaper quoted Singh.
There was one observation made after viewing this news item. For no apparent reason the picture of the mosque has been featured in the news. Scarcity of things representing Dubai cannot be the reason behind this. A nefarious intention seems to be the reason. The story is being presented to the reader in such a way, so that he believes that the judgement was being inspired by the religion of Islam which the mosque symbolizes. Dubai is among the Islamic countries of the world. It will be unwise on the part of media to add the photo of any temple or a church if it carries any news about the verdicts of Nepal or USA courts.

Otherwise, as for the judgement, no Indian differs from the stand taken by the government and the media. But many question how we can justify the ‘injustice’ we ourselves do to some innocents by implicating them in false terror cases.

Ironically, the role of the media is not encouraging in this matter. There are many examples which can easily be found where after a terror incident it was the media which provided the leads to the investigation! It was the judge, investigator and what not. Call it whatever you like, a coincidence or a conspiracy, but the fact is that Muslim youth were always the suspects. Take the example of the recent blast in Pune. Just after the blast took place the list of the suspected executors imagined by the media had only the outfits with Muslim names. Thanks to the police for not putting blind and complete trust in these myths, as it seemed it did in the earlier blasts.

Why is the media reluctant to prove the innocence of the wronged individuals if they belong to minority communities? Instead, when it is to demonize anyone or any community it is on the forefront, but when the courts acquit them of all the charges, then what was the front page news now is a few lines hidden somewhere in the inside pages. If seventeen held in Sharjah for the murder of one individual is Front page news and seems unfair to all then what about the hundreds of innocent youth that are in our jails held indefinitely for being suspects. Is the media prejudiced? Then why ignore the plight of fellow Indians in our own country.

Ensure Israel Arms Curbs, Say UK MPs

The UK government must ensure that military equipment sold to Israel is not used in the occupied territories, the MPs have said.

In their report, the MPs said: "We repeat our conclusion that it is regrettable that arms exports to Israel were almost certainly used in Operation Cast Lead.

Ministers must learn "broader lessons" about ensuring the ban on the trade in such products for use in Gaza and the West Bank is enforced, the report adds.

The MPs said it was "regrettable" that UK arms sold to Israel were "almost certainly" used in Gaza in 2008.

However, they said the UK provided less than 1% of arms exported to Israel.

Rocket attacks

The Commons Committees on Arms Export Controls - made up of members of other select committees - questioned ministers on the state of the military equipment trade.
It heard that arms deals with Israel had been looked at on a "case-by-case basis", rather than the UK government imposing an embargo.

Five licences had been revoked since Operation Cast Lead, launched by Israel in December 2008. (In the 22-day offensive launched by Israel in the Gaza Strip as many as 1,400 Gazans had died. In the counter attack by Hamas around thirteen Israelis, including three civilians, were killed.)

In their report, the MPs said: "We repeat our conclusion that it is regrettable that arms exports to Israel were almost certainly used in Operation Cast Lead.

"This is in direct contravention to the UK government's policy that UK arms exports to Israel should not be used in the occupied territories.

The Campaign Against the Arms Trade, which also gave evidence to the MPs, said it was "virtually impossible to guarantee that any military equipment supplied to the Israeli government will not be used in the occupied territories".

"We further conclude that the revoking of five UK arms exports licences to Israel since Cast Lead is welcome, but that broader lessons must be learned from the post-conflict review to ensure that UK arms exports to Israel are not used in the occupied territories in future.
"We recommend that the government, in its response to this report, set out clearly the longer term lessons learnt post-Operation Cast Lead and how they will impact in practice on the issuing of future licences for arms exports to Israel."

'Take Gaza into account'

In evidence to the MPs in April last year, Bill Rammell, then a Foreign Office minister, said the government had not authorised any exports relating to F-16 jets, helicopters or armoured personnel carriers for Israel since the conflict in Lebanon in 2006.

But Foreign Secretary David Miliband made a statement on 21 April last year, in which he said the F-16s and Apache helicopters used by Israeli forces during Operation Cast Lead had "almost certainly" contained British-supplied components.

In their report, the MPs said: "The government stated it would take the conflict in Gaza into account in assessing all future licence applications."

They added: "The government wrote to the committees in July 2009 with an update on the review of 182 licences to Israel.

"It decided to revoke five licences for equipment to the Israeli Navy. It stated that there was no evidence that the decision to revoke those licences has had any impact on the UK's defence relationship with either the USA or Israel."

The Campaign Against the Arms Trade, which also gave evidence to the MPs, said it was "virtually impossible to guarantee that any military equipment supplied to the Israeli government will not be used in the occupied territories".

It called for an embargo on arms and components going to Israel, both directly and through use in weapons produced in other countries and then sold on to Israel.

The campaign said the government had licensed arms exports worth between £10m and £30m a year for export directly to Israel over the past few years.

During 2008, licences for goods worth more than £27.5m had been approved, it added, while the UK had sold components used in weapons exported to Israel by US suppliers.
In evidence in January this year, Foreign Office Minister Ivan Lewis said there would "not be any arms embargo against Israel" as the government was "firmly of the view that Israel faces real threats".


Hamid Karzai, Taliban And the U. S.

Is the threat made by Hamid Karzai to join Taliban meant only for pleasing the Taliban fundamentalists who might again take on Afghanistan after foreign forces withdraw? Or has he now tasted the friendship of the West and the Afghan in him has awakened? Or America now does not need him?

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has threatened to quit the political process and join the Taliban if he continued to come under outside pressure to reform. Karzai government has for long been accused of corruption but his western allies continued support to him as it was expected that at least his government will root out Taliban from the country. Social and economic reforms of course were not the priority.

It seems as if the things did not go as per the plan. The immense efforts by Karzai government and the non-Afghan allied forces turned to be nothing but a wild goose chase as the Taliban now seems to have more Afghans in their favour than they used to have while they ruled whole Afghanistan with the exception of a tiny part.

Apprehensions are being made that after the American and NATO forces withdraw from Afghanistan the destiny of the country will be in the hands of Taliban. Probably, Karzai has sensed the situation and as precaution he is trying to befriend the future rulers of Afghanistan so that Taliban do not harm him.

The immense efforts by Karzai government and the non-Afghan allied forces turned to be nothing but a wild goose chase as the Taliban now seems to have more Afghans in their favour than they used to have while they ruled whole Afghanistan with the exception of a tiny part.

The reason for Karzai’s unexpected statement proves that that he does not want to be left helpless after U.S.A. goes from Afghanistan. It is alleged that Mr Karzai and his brother Ahmed Wali Karzai have been involved in opium smuggling in know of the United States. Some days ago this was revealed by an American official. The need of America for a puppet from the Afghan nation was the factor that Karzai’s involvement in the illegal trade was ignored. Now when America is leaving Afghanistan, some analysts believe, it no more needs Karzai and hence all his evils are being exposed. And the apprehension of Karzai is that he will be left at the mercy of the Taliban if his benefactor U.S. leaves him. Hence, the need to attain Taliban’s sympathy.

At the time the U.S. had attacked Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban; Afghans had expected that they will now be governed by a good government keen in their prosperity. But the subsequent situation proved that it was but a dream. Poverty still rules in the country and peace has not yet come. Bomb Blasts occur on a daily basis.

The need of America for a puppet from the Afghan nation was the factor that Karzai’s involvement in the illegal trade was ignored. Now when America is leaving Afghanistan, some analysts believe, it no more needs Karzai and hence all his evils are being exposed.

The aid provided by other countries was not spent entirely on welfare activities. In March this year, a senior EU parliamentarian, Pino Arlacchi claimed that a staggering 70-80 percent of the $34 billion in aid earmarked for Afghanistan since 2002 never reached the Afghan people due to corruption, waste and donors withholding funds. Major part of the aid, instead of being spent on common mans welfare was used to train the police.
According to the Afghan government, $36 billion has been “spent” by foreign donors in Afghanistan since 2002. Of that total, $19 billion was allocated for training and equipping the Afghan police and army and the remaining $17 billion for development and reconstruction. More than half of the $36 billion, therefore, was never destined to reach “ordinary” Afghans in the first place.

Even the motive of the organizations working in Afghanistan is in question. A U.N. report on corruption last January found that 54 percent of Afghans believe international aid organisations “are corrupt and are in the country just to get rich”.

“This perception risks undermining aid effectiveness and discrediting those trying to help a country desperately in need of assistance,” the United Nations said in the report which was based on interviews with 7,600 Afghans across the country.

All this was known to the international community and there has not been any effort to set this right. Rather Karzai was adulated and called the only Afghan well wisher of his country. But when the same President could not live up to the expectations of his patronisers and seems to be fed up with them, he no more deserves the same status and has fallen from their eyes.

The threat by Karzai if visualized will change the status of the Taliban from ‘rebelling’ into ‘resistance’. Then everyone will consider the Taliban as a movement which is resisting against a foreign occupation rather than a rebellion against an elected government.

The threat by Karzai if visualized will change the status of the Taliban from ‘rebelling’ into ‘resistance’. Then everyone will consider the Taliban as a movement which is resisting against a foreign occupation rather than a rebellion against an elected government. It will be like two groups of the same community struggling against invaders in their country. The situation could change for the US.

On the threat of Karzai joining the Taliban, the White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said that it was troubling. "On behalf of the American people, we're frustrated with the remarks," Gibbs reportedly said.

Meanwhile, Karzai has launched a bizarre attack on the UN and Western powers and accused them of committing "fraud" at the Afghan presidential election of August 20th last year. It indicates that now that there have emerged differences between present Afghan government and the allied forces on the front in Afghanistan.

Nowadays negative remarks about Karzai have started surfacing. The newspaper The Australian recently published an article by one William Maley in which the writer maintains that Karzai ‘possesses some of the skills required to be an effective political leader, but not all.’

“In the early phases of Afghanistan's transition, his inclusive rhetoric, strong linguistic skills and personal decency served him well as a symbolic focus of loyalty, and in 2004, 64 per cent of Afghans surveyed by the Asia Foundation said the country was moving in the right direction.

As time went by, these symbolic strengths became less relevant to Afghanistan's problems, which increasingly needed to be addressed through rigorous policy development and implementation, and moves to prevent nepotism and corruption. These were not Karzai's strengths, given that he had grown up politically during the 1980s in the "state-free" environment of the Pakistani city of Peshawar, where Afghan mujahedeen politics was based on networking and connections,” he writes.

Why is Karzai so irritated that he is ready to go to the extent of a compromise, with those whom till yesterday he was waging a war against? Why have differences emerged when both Karzai and the US were together against the same common enemy? What has given Karzai the courage to speak against the US? And most importantly, why has the same Karzai, whom they installed now being condemned by them?

Junaid Maseeh

News Scan

AMU Professor Awarded ‘Vigyan Gaurav Samman’

Prof. Kabiruddin, Department of Chemistry, Aligarh Muslim University has been conferred the prestigious "Vigyan Gaurav Samman" (2008-2009) by the Council of Science and Technology, Government of U.P. The award was given for his outstanding contributions to scientific research and learning.

The award was presented by the Minister of Science and Technology, Government of UP at an impressive function "Vigyan Samaroh" held at Lucknow. It carries a cash prize of Rs. 1, 00,000/-, a memento and a citation.

Prof. Kabiruddin has authored more than 250 research papers, supervised 26 Ph.D., 09 M.Phil., attended about 100 national/international conferences and is a member of several scientific societies. He has completed a number of research projects sponsored by UGC-DAE, CSIR and UP CST. He is also the recipient of Suresh C. Ameta Medal of the Indian Chemical Society.¬

South Americans Held In Bangalore For Stealing

As many as four South Americans were arrested by the Bangalore unit of Central Crime Branch (CCB) on March 30th in a theft case.

The arrested persons have been identified as Pedro Alejandro Maira Rodriguez (30) from Venezuela, Maira Alejandra Aranago Giraldo (22) of Barrio Villa, Pereira, Columbia, Elensilson Amilcar Pocasangre Ruano (34) of Los Rosales, San Salvador, and Luis Alberto Giraldo Lopez (25) from Bogota, Columbia.

According to the reports, the sleuths recovered intact eight kilograms of gold and one kg silver, in all valued at around Rs 1.25 crore, stolen from a Residency Road hotel room on March 22.

The complainants, executives of a gold jewellery firm from Jaipur were so delighted that they gave a reward of Rs five lakh to the investigating team.

It is reported that the gang members met in Malaysia a few months ago. Pedro, himself a designer has wide knowledge of jewellery designs. He and Maira have been together for the past few months. Elensilson and Luis also joined Pedro and decided to visit India to make some fast bucks.

No Mandir Existed In Ayodhya Before 19th Century: Prof Harbans Mukhiya

The famous historian and former professor of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Harbans Mukhiya has said that there was no Mandir in Ayodhya at all and that Muslims did not use force to convert Indians to Islam.

Speaking on “Reasons behind spread of Islam in India” in Raza Library in Rampur, Uttar Pradesh he said, “as a historian I want to say that there was no Mandir in Ayodhya at all. Before 19th century there was not even imagination about the Mandir there but only after that it was propagated.”

He added, “No historian has written that Mughal emperors used the means of conversion for extension of their government. It is totally baseless that they brought down thousands of Mandirs and forced people to accept Islam.”

Mr Mukhiya said that there was not any established proof behind the claim that Mughal rulers demolished three thousand or sixty thousand Mandirs. “In fact, Some Mandirs were demolished but the reasons were different and not to impose Islam on people. If Mughal emperors demolished Mandirs and forced people to accept Islam then why there were only 15% Muslims in India despite they ruled the country for over eight centuries while their number increased during the period of British rule?” he asked.

He further said that Islam spread in India because of several reasons with the passage of time. “Islamic teachings of brotherhood, communal harmony, tolerance and kindness are some factors that attract people to embrace Islam and Sufiya’s behaviour and teachings also worked in this regard. If Muslim used swords to spread Islam then history never missed to mention that but history of Mughal period is silent on this issue” he added.
Rajasthan Police Accused Of Selling Corpses

Allegations have been made against the Rajasthan police of ‘selling’ the unclaimed bodies to the private medical colleges.

Rajasthan government admitted on March 30th that 15 such bodies were given to private medical colleges and hospitals without following proper legal procedure in Sriganganagar, about 600 km from Jaipur. However it maintained that there was no evidence of ‘selling’ of the bodies.

As per the media reports, the admission of Home Minister Shanti Dhariwal in the Assembly has come in the wake of a BJP member Om Birla raising the issue following allegations by a Sriganganagar based jeweller Rajkumar Soni that the body of his 19-year-old son Rahul, was sold to a medical college by police.

The irregularities in disposal of unclaimed bodies by the police came in the light after Soni filed a Right to Information query. His son was found injured in a park in Sriganganagar town on May 25 last year and he died in a hospital the next day. Soni claimed police treated him as an unidentified deceased and sold the body to a private medical college soon after post-mortem without trying to trace his relatives.

According to the information availed from the RTI application, the police from 2005 to 2009 gave 29 bodies to two private medical institutions including those dealing with Ayurveda and Homeopathy, in violation of the Rajasthan Anatomy Act.
Soni said under the Act advertisements have to be given by police to search for relatives of unidentified bodies and could be given to government medical college only after no one claims them.

Meanwhile seven police personnel, including four inspectors, were chargesheeted in this connection. Six others, including five Assistant Sub inspectors and one head constable, were removed from duty and sent to police lines. They have also been served a show-cause notice.

N. America To Launch First Islamic MasterCard Soon

A Canadian Islamic financial institution is launching Canada’s first “halal-approved” credit card this month (April) and will also offer it to US Muslims by year end, its president told news agencies.

The iFreedom Plus MasterCard meets the requirements of Sharia law, which prohibits usury, by being prepaid and therefore interest-free, said Omar Kalair, president of Toronto-based UM Financial.

“Trade is allowed, but usury is not,” he explained. A similar card is already available in Britain, but nowhere else in the West, he said.

Until now, devout Muslims in Canada have either had to do without credit cards or paid off the balance each month to avoid interest charges that go against their faith.
Three Islamic finance experts said in a statement the card “complies with Islamic Laws and Muslims can avail of this product.”

Of course, non-Muslims may want one too, Kalair said.

Benefits include no monthly fee, no transaction fees and discounts on flights with Etihad Airways, which flies from Toronto to Abu Dhabi.

According to a 2001 census, there are 580,000 Muslims living in Canada. Kalair estimates the number is now one million. (Agencies)

IKEA lights For 40,000 Girl Students In UP

Now the shortage of electricity will not hamper the study of 40,000 girls studying in 454 Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas in Uttar Pradesh as a Swedish company, Ikea-one of the world’s largest furniture retailers, has decided to provide them with solar-powered lamps through UNICEF.

The first lot of 100 bright, attractive lamps has even been given to students in KGBV at Mal, about 45 km from Lucknow, said the media reports.

Since most of the KGBV schools are in rural areas, the power supply there is bad. The KGBV are residential schools, run under the Centre’s scheme to provide education up to Class VIII — mainly to girls from SC, ST, OBC and minority communities. However, 25 per cent of the students belong to families below the poverty line.

The students are happy to have the lamps as now they do not need light candles or use kerosene lamps when there is no electricity. “We had to discontinue our studies whenever the electricity went off, which is very often. Now, there is no such problem,” said Shabnam Bharti, a Class VI student.

The solar lamps can provide light for around four hours. These require charging for 9 to12 hours in sunlight and over 12 hours on a cloudy day. As the lamps use Light Emitting Diode, the consumption of energy is 70 per cent less. The flexible body of the lamp can be adjusted according to the requirement.

“The initiative will ensure a brighter future for girl students. Children in rural areas of the state do not have access to regular supply of electricity. With this donation, the children will now be able to study at night and have a normal childhood like others,” Angela Walker, Chief Communication Specialist of UNICEF India, has been quoted as saying.
German Troops Kill Five NATO Forces

German troops in northern Afghanistan have killed five Afghan soldiers driving in two civilian cars which did not heed warnings to stop.

The NATO forces were reportedly en route to the scene of a clash with Taliban that left three German soldiers dead.

The two unmarked civilian cars involved are thought to have been an Afghan National Army patrol en route to Kunduz city where the clash had taken place, said NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) while regretting the friendly fire incident.

Germany has the third-largest foreign contingent in Afghanistan. However its participation in Afghanistan has been deeply unpopular with the German public The German parliament voted in February to increase the contingent by up to 850 troops to a total of 5,350.

Dozens of Afghan civilians died last September in Kunduz when German commanders called in a NATO air strike on two hijacked fuel trucks, sparking a political furore in Berlin which continues.

Bedtime Stories Improve Child’s Literacy?

The experts say that reading out a bedtime story to children for 20 minutes may improve their literacy by at least 10 school days a year.

“Read for just even 20 minutes (every night) and it makes all the difference in literacy’s goals,” Laura Numeroff, a New York Times best-selling author and illustrator of children’s books, was quoted as saying by Xinhua news agency.

She said that her parents would read out stories to her and she took keen interest in it. “When I was about nine years old, I was so excited about reading other people’s stories, and I wanted to write on my own. Here I am, doing it for a living.” “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” was a huge hit in the US which prompted Numeroff to expand the book to an entire “If you give” series to include a mouse, a cat and a pig.

The author, however, admitted that making children excited about reading even as they are surrounded by high-tech gadgets is itself quite a mission.

Mona Thomas, a mother who reads daily story to her children said reading not only enhances the vocabulary and knowledge of the children but also makes them think.
“I constantly stop reading stories and ask: do you know what that means, or ask what do you think is going to happen next, why do you think the character did this, how do you think about their feelings? We talk about feelings, vocabulary; so I really use stories to cover a broad range of information,” Thomas said.

Smoking Cause Also Lower IQ

This Smoking has long been known to damage lungs and cause heart disease but it could also lower IQ, a research has found.

“The heavier the smoker, the lower the IQ” says a reports published in
The results come from a study of 20,000 young men conducted by the Sheba Medical Center at the Tel Hashomer Hospital in Israel. According to the study, those who smoked more than a pack a day had particularly low IQs of around 90. An average intelligence IQ score ranges from 84 to 116 points.

A typical 18 to 21-yearold smoker was found to have an IQ of 94, while non-smokers of the same age averaged 101.

Crucially, brothers scored differently depending on whether or not they smoked. Despite similar environmental conditions, non-smoking siblings achieved higher IQs than their smoking brothers.

Mark Weiser, who led the research, said it is unclear whether smoking causes IQ levels to drop or whether less intelligent people are simply more inclined to smoke.

Woman Alleges PGI Doctor Molested Her

A resident doctor in PGI’s Nehru Hospital has been accused to have molested a middle-aged woman in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

In her complaint a woman has said that the doctor molested her while explaining how a medicine should be given to her husband, admitted in the ICU for the last few days.
Subsequently, a formal complaint was submitted to the head of the department of anaesthesia, and PGI director Prof K K Talwar. The ICU falls under the department of anaesthesia.

In an earlier incident of molestation in the hospital, an operation theatre assistant was accused of molesting an 18-year-old unconscious girl admitted in the ICU. The incident took place in March 2001.

Subsequently, PGI was criticised for its handling of the matter, which was not reported to the police. The hospital had preferred to rely on an internal inquiry. Later, the erring employee was merely transferred to another department.
Woman shot for 'poor Easter dress sense'

Media reports say that a woman shot her cousin dead during an argument that started because one

woman didn't think the other was dressed properly for Easter dinner.
Danielle Pickens, 19, showed up in a night at the home of Evelyn Burgess wearing a T-shirt and denim shorts.

Ms Burgess, 42, reportedly told the police that she thought the outfit was inappropriate and disrespectful.

In the ensuing fight between the two women, Pickens walked outside to leave and Ms Burgess shot her in the head with a handgun. However, Ms Burgess said that she did not mean to shoot Pickens dead.

Pope Benedict XVI Silent On Sex Abuse Scandal

Pope Benedict XVI has acknowledged that the Roman Catholic Church is in "times of difficulty" but avoided direct comment on sex abuse.

Large-scale paedophile scandals have rocked the churches of Ireland, Austria, Switzerland, the US and the Pope's native Germany in recent weeks. The Vatican has adopted a strategy of blaming the media for playing up the revelations, accusing them of trying to smear Benedict.

“Priests, ministers of Christ, have a special responsibility", said the Pope, appearing calm and smiling, adding they should be "messengers of victory over evil and death,” said Pope in an Easter Monday prayer about priests' special responsibility to society.
But the Pope again stayed silent on the abuse scandal, which has reached him with claims he helped shield predator priests when he was head of the Vatican's moral watchdog and as archbishop of Munich.

Benedict has faced criticism over claims that as Cardinal, he failed to take action despite being alerted twice by the archbishop of Wisconsin to claims that priest Lawrence Murphy had abused 200 deaf children.

Ahmadinejad Threatens Obama Of ‘Tooth-breaking Response’

Reacting tough to the recently disclosed nuclear policy of the United States Iranian President Mr Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warned its counterpart of a ‘tooth-breaking” response.

In a policy shift, the United States on April 6th unveiled new limits on the nation’s nuclear arsenal saying it would only use atomic weapons in “extreme circumstances” and would not attack non-nuclear states.

The U.S. for the first time said that countries without atomic weapons that complied with non-proliferation treaty obligations need not fear a US nuclear attack. But Obama warned exceptions could be made for “outliers” such as Iran and North Korea, both accused by the West of flouting UN resolutions.

“I hope these published comments are not true... he (Obama) has threatened with nuclear and chemical weapons those nations which do not submit to the greed of the United States,” Ahmadinejad said in speech broadcast live on state television.

“Be careful. If you set step in Mr. (George W.) Bush’s path, the nations’ response would be the same tooth-breaking one as they gave Bush,” Iranian President is quoted as having said.

Women Trying To Smuggle Corpse Arrested

Two women who allegedly tried to smuggle a dead relative on to a flight out of England have been arrested at Liverpool John Lennon Airport.

The suspects pushed the 91-year-old man in a wheelchair and covered his face with sunglasses during a bid to board him on their flight to Berlin, sources said.

When asked by the Airport officials the women, 41 and 66, said that he was merely asleep.
It is believed the pair had somehow managed to ferry the corpse in a taxi from their home in Oldham, Greater Manchester, to the terminal.

But the alleged attempt to smuggle the body to Germany was foiled after airport staff started asking questions.

Leaked Video Shows US Air Crew Shooting Journalist

A Web site has shown a secret video which features a US Apache helicopter crew shooting and killing a Reuters photographer and driver in a July 2007 attack in Baghdad.

WikiLeaks says that it acquired the black-and-white aerial video from whistleblowers in the military and viewed it after breaking the encryption code.

It shows conversation between the pilots in two Apache helicopters as they open fire on people on a street in Baghdad which resulted into the death of 12 people including the Reuters photographer Namir Noor-Eldeen, 22, and the driver Saeed Chmagh, 40.

On the day of the attack, US military officials said that the helicopters were called in to help American troops who had been exposed to small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades in a raid.

But the video does not show hostile action. Instead, it begins with a group of people milling around on a street, among them, according to WikiLeaks, Noor-Eldeen and Chmagh.
Both Eldeen and Chmagh were mistaken to be insurgents and Eldeen’s camera was mistaken for a weapon.

David Schlesinger, the editor in chief of Reuters, said in a statement that the video was "graphic evidence of the dangers involved in wartime journalism and the tragedies that can result."

They Burnt Their Houses To Evade Demolition Drive

In fear of becoming homeless the slum dwellers alongside the Tibba Road in Ludhiana set their huts on fire as the demolition team arrived to remove their hutments.

As per the media reports, on March 30 when a team led by assistant town planner Kamaljeet Kaur, went to demolish the hutments which had come up on two acres of civic body land the dwellers removed their goods from the houses and then two of them allegedly set a straw hut on fire, which soon engulfed the entire area.

The team had to make a quick escape along with the machinery and the fire brigade was called.

The police arrested and registered an FIR against Liyakat Ali and Abdullah on the complaint of Baljit Singh, inspector of the Building Branch.

ATP Kamaljeet Kaur said, “Though most of the slum dwellers were resisting the drive, the two accused were creating a lot of nuisance. It was a narrow escape for us and the fire brigade reached in time.”

More Hindus Than Muslims Have Two Wives

The Shoaib-Ayesha-Sania drama, played out live on TV for days, has enhanced the image of Ayesha and her family. The same cannot be said of the former Pakistan captain who sold himself short by denying his first marriage.

Indians and Pakistanis alike can now heave a sigh of relief that the controversy is settled. But the entire saga offers important lessons. First, although Muslim Personal Law allows a man to take a second wife during the lifetime of the first, it cannot be a license to commit injustice. Under Islamic tenets, a man is allowed to take a second wife only if he is in a position to provide equal partnership and amenities to both.

However, if you were to carry out an honest survey across the country, you would find that more Hindu men than Muslims have more than one wife. In such cases, the second wife is neither recognized by society nor given the legal status of ‘wife’.

It’s interesting to note that throughout the controversy — and despite Sania’s wholehearted support for Shoaib — the Muslim community in particular and Indian society at large was solidly behind Ayesha, who was seen as the victim in the whole saga.

Perhaps that’s why Shoaib did not succeed in his attempt to cover up his first marriage.

Also, Ayesha’s acceptance of a divorce without preconditions sends out a strong signal to the Pakistani people — the people of India are forgiving if you make amends.

Karzai Aide Brands Ex-UN Envoy A ‘Liar’

The deputy spokesman of Hamid Karzai has called the former UN envoy to Afghanistan a ‘liar’.

His statement came after the ex-UN envoy Peter Galbraith questioned Karzai’s “mental stability” over the latter’s allegation that foreign forces were behind the fraud in last years’ presidential elections.

“He’s prone to tirades. He can be very emotional, act impulsively. In fact, some of the palace insiders say that he has a certain fondness for some of Afghanistan’s most profitable exports,” Galbraith told MSNBC television.

“This continued tirade raises questions about his mental stability and frankly this has been something that has been of concern to diplomats in Kabul,” he added.

Reacting harsh to his statement the deputy spokesman of Afghanistan leader Siamak Hirwi said, “Since he is a fraudster and a liar, so are his recent comments,” he told AFP. “One could take his recent comments as an example that everything he has said so far about Afghanistan and the Afghan election has been a pure lie.”

Galbraith was sacked from his post last year over how far to push the Afghan authorities on electoral fraud allegations in the August vote. EU observers reached similar conclusions that ballots were stuffed on a massive scale in favour of Karzai.

Karzai eventually acknowledged irregularities and was returned to power after his main challenger, former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah, withdrew from a second-round contest.

India Will Overtake China's Growth Rate: Chidambaram

Home Minister P Chidambaram has said that he hoped India will overtake China’s growth rate in the next ten years.

"While the last decade was remarkable and exciting, this decade will be more exciting for India. There is more possibility that India could overtake China's growth rates," he said reportedly.

While the world’s sixth largest economy China has recorded an average nine per cent growth over the last two decades India has seen growth touch nine per cent and this too only in the three years till 2007-08. The global financial crisis ate into this progress and growth slipped to 6.7 per cent in 2008-09.

The Planning Commission, at its meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh earlier this month, scaled down India's growth target for the 11th five-year plan period (2007-12) to 8.1 per cent from the previously estimated nine per cent.

The minister's confidence also stems from the fact that Foreign Direct Investment inflows -- key to growth -- have been increasing rapidly, although they slowed during 2008-09 at the height of the financial crisis.

"We are young and will continue to grow...corporate India will continue to grow in the current decade. The young CEOs and executives must help to take India to the next level," he said.

Chidambaram said human resources will not be a burden for India in this decade--rather they will count as assets.

Islamic Banking Can Solve Vidarbha Crisis: M S Swaminathan

Though Islamic Banking is opposed because of it being associated with a religion it may come as a solution to financial problems especially of the poor.

Father of Indian green revolution, M S Swaminathan has said that Islamic Banking will be a solution to farmer suicide in Vidarbha as it propagates zero interest lending.

He said that exorbitant lending rates charged by money lenders in Vidarbha have created a vicious cycle of debt and suicide in the region and every now and then we come across the news of farmers committing suicide under the pressure of debt.

He was speaking at Karuna Award—an award given by Karuna International for outstanding work on ahimsa, love for ecology and vegetarianism—held in Chennai on April 5.

He recollected his childhood incident, when he was asked by his parents to donate his jewellery to Gandhiji, who auctioned those valuables to raise money for the cause of Harijans. “My father was a freedom fighter. And he taught me to give away the surplus for the cause of the downtrodden. I was asked to donate my bangle and chain at an auction by Gandhiji to raise money for Harijans”, he said.

Rajasthan Women lead A Better Life Owing To NREGA

Even though there are misappropriation of funds and nepotism as regards the fair implementation of National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA), many families are benefitting from it.

Bhamori, a mother of eight is happy that she has a water tank constructed for free and also earned money for its construction in a village in Rajasthan where the largest beneficiary of the NREGA are women.

The scheme assures 100 days work in a year for a rural family. Now with a 60,000 litre water storage tank built in her home at Sribalaji village in arid Nagaur district, 150 km from Jodhpur, Bhamori says for the first time she could have peace of mind as earlier she had to trudge over five kilometres every day for two buckets of water for her family during the hot summer months.

Bhamori not only got the tank free but also earned working for by working for it under NREGA scheme. "I was also able to open my first savings account at the local post office," she said proudly.

As per the reports, over 67 per cent of total days of work generated by NREGA in Rajasthan were utilised by women with the government assuring a minimum of 33 per cent work for them.

Lakhs of women enrolled under NRGEA now can manage their square meal while staying at their home. "Earlier, they had to migrate to states like Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka to work in the fields and could save very little,” said Jethu Bhai, who runs an NGO in Pali district.

Rajasthan has earned a name for good implementation of NREGA schemes. Nevertheless, there have been also been complaints of misappropriation of funds and nepotism.

Israeli Shoot Dead Palestinian Teenager In Gaza

Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian teenager near the southern Gaza border town of Rafah on March 30, Palestinian medics said. Muawiya Hassanein, the head of Gaza emergency services, said Mohammed Al Faramawi, 15, was shot dead close to Gaza’s defunct airport, without giving further details.

The Israeli military would not immediately comment on the report.

Gaza’s borders had been mostly quiet since a massive 22-day Israeli offensive against the territory’s Islamist Hamas rulers ended in January 2009.

But two Israeli soldiers and two Palestinians were killed last weekend in Gaza in the heaviest clashes since the end of the war, and several rockets have been fired by Palestinian militants in past weeks. (AFP)

Mass Suicide Attempt In Russian Jail

At least 10 prisoners cut their writs in a mass suicide attempt at a penal colony in Russia's southern Saratov region.

Their suicide attempts came after they were placed in solitary confinement over their collective refusal to go out on the daily walk in the quad of the penal colony in the Volga River city of Engels.

It is believed that jailers' actions were behind the mass suicide attempt. A statement by the prosecutors says, “In answer to the actions of the employees at the penal colony, the convicts who were in solitary confinement began cutting their veins.”

"As a result, 10 men were wounded," it added. "All the prisoners, who tried to end their lives by suicide, have been given special medical care."

An employee of the local prosecutors' office reportedly told that investigators had launched a probe into the conditions at the penal colony. "There were some problems.

Whether they are related to the suicides or not, I cannot yet say. Investigators have been sent to the site," the employee said on condition of anonymity.

Earlier, lawyer Sergei Magnitsky had died in pre-trial detention last year. His supporters say poor conditions and neglect led to his death.

The death of Magnitsky, who had been awaiting trial in a highly controversial financial case, put the spotlight on the fate of thousands of other inmates in Russia's overcrowded jails

However, President Dmitry Medvedev had vowed reforms in December, sacking 20 top officials in the penal system -- a largely Soviet legacy that houses the world's second largest prison population after the United States.

500 Went Missing In Last Two years In Chandigarh

As many as 500 people have disappeared in the last two years from Chandigarh. The figure may be even higher. More worrisome is that the number of missing people is increasingly growing, the police said.

As for this year, so far 75 people, including 21 children, have gone missing. In 2009, 203 people, many of them children, went missing; this figure for 2008 was 261 people, according to the data available with the Chandigarh Police.

Neither the police nor the families know about the whereabouts of missing people.
A resident of Gidderbha in Punjab, Raghav Wadhwa who studied law in Rayat College of Law went to drop his cousin to Sector 23 in his white Maruti Swift car on January 5 this year and is missing ever since.

“We have been trying our best to trace Raghav,” Jaswinder Singh, SHO of the Sector-17 police station, said. In Raghav’s case, an FIR of kidnapping was registered on February 2.

In almost all of these cases, their families are hopeful that the missing person will return some day.

“In many cases involving adult persons, they either elope or run away on their own. But even that needs investigation and that’s why FIRs of missing persons are duly registered,” UT Senior Superintendent of Police S S Srivastva said.

Srivastva added that missing children, especially below the age of 14, were an area of concern. “There are others who do not inform the police even after they are reunited with their families,” he said.

One Third Muslims Below Poverty Line: NCAER survey

In yet another evidence that Muslims are far backward economically, a National Council for Applied Economic Research (NCAER) survey has found that nearly one third of Muslims survive on less than Rs 550 a month.

According to the survey, three out of every 10 Muslims were below poverty line and lived on less than Rs 550 a month in the year 2004-05.

The survey took the poverty line at Rs 356 per person per month in rural areas and at Rs 538 in urban areas for 2004-05. Even among the poor, urban Muslims were better off compared to those in villages, who survived on Rs 338 a month during the year under review.

This has come amid the ongoing debate on reservations for Muslims in jobs and educational institutions. Supreme Court, in an interim order, has upheld the validity of four per cent job and educational reservation provided to backward members of Muslim community in Andhra Pradesh.

However, in the country, Muslim households are slightly better off than Dalits and Adivasis as a whole.

The survey said Muslims are most likely to generate income from small family businesses, partly because of educational differences across the community. It said social group differences in enrolment are striking.

Gaza’s Sole Power Plant Shuts Down

The sole power plant in the besieged Gaza Strip was shut down on April 9 because fuel supplies ran out, with Palestinians and Israel blaming each other.

Notably, the industrial diesel needed to run the power plant — which supplies about 25 percent of Gaza’s energy — comes through an Israeli-controlled fuel terminal, with Israel setting import quotas.

Referring to the Israeli blockade of Gaza since its 2007 takeover by the Islamist Hamas movement assistant director of Gaza’s electricity authority Kanaan Obeid said, “The power plant shut down completely this morning as a result of a shortage of fuel caused by the Israeli siege.”

But Israel said the shut-down was caused by a rift over funding among the Palestinians, and that the Hamas rival, the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority, had stopped fuel purchases.

The imports have declined since November when the European Commission transferred responsibility for buying the fuel to the Palestinian Authority, after its aid program expired.
The Israeli army said the Palestinians had stopped buying fuel in recent days after Hamas failed to pay its share of the costs.

Israel supplies about 70 percent of Gaza’s power and Egypt provides five percent, with the remainder from the closed power plant.

Since March 3, the facility had been producing only 30 megawatts of electricity, or 38 percent of its full capacity.

This has led to blackouts of eight to 12 hours a day in parts of the impoverished territory, affecting the provision of essential services, including water supply, medical treatment and sewage disposal, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The power plant has had to shut down on several occasions in the past because of fuel shortages. (Agencies)

Opposition To Karnataka Cattle Preservation Bill Continue

Though the Karnataka assembly has passed the Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Bill, 2010 on Friday, Mar 19, general public is not happy at all with it.

The bill introduces strict measures to ensure the slaughter and transporting of not only cows but also of buffaloes, calves and bulls among and in future may be whatever the word ‘cattle’ refers to.

Every kind of efforts from demonstrations to seminars are being made to compel the government withdraw the bill.

In such an attempt a counselling meeting was called jointly by Imarat-E-Shariah Karnataka, All India Milli Council Karnataka and Jamiat-Ul-Quraish Beef Merchants Association, Karnataka on March 25.

The participants argued that the formulation of such a law in other words will mean the imposition of Hindu law in a country that boasts of its multi-religious and multi-cultural society.

“Considering the holiness of cow in Hinduism the government intends to ban cow slaughter. But why does it not see the religions of non-Hindus? They permit their followers for consuming beef. If cow slaughter is banned other than Hindus will be compelled to abandon what their religions allow,” said Mufti Ashraf Ali Baqwi, Ameer-E-Shariat Karnataka.

“Indian Constitution sanctions everyone to do business in what they want. It will unconstitutional to stop someone from doing business in cattle,” said Zulfiqar Raza Noori.

The Imam of Jama Masjid Bangalore Maulana Riyaz-Ur-Rahman Rashadi said that we should adopt optimistic approach. “The bill is yet to be approved by the Council, Governor and President of India. And of course even after that we will have Indian Constitution,” said Rashadi who expressed apprehensions about the intention of the governor. “In the very Jama Masjid the governor (Hans Raj Bhardwaj) had promised that he will not let the bill be passed. But after some days he was reported by the newspaper to have urged the congress leaders help pass the bill.”

After this program, too, Dalits, Muslims, Christians and secular Hindus raised their voice against the bill in various programs and through staging rallies and demonstrations.

One In Five Men Hide Savings Account From Partner

According to an interesting survey, one in five men has a savings account, which is hidden from his partner.

The survey conducted by OnePoll for the Post Office in the week starting March 22 and which questioned 2,258 people online said that husbands and boyfriends keep the money a secret because they think their income is none of their partner's business or for safety in case the relationship does not work out.

"It comes as no surprise that more men have a savings account unknown to partners, and more men make major financial decisions without their partners," Times Online quoted Donna Dawson, a psychologist specialising in personality, behaviour and relationships, as saying.

The men in the study said that a covert account made them feel more independent and they were also able to spend money guilt free.

More than a fifth of male respondents said that they were concerned partners might not approve of their investments.

Only 7 per cent of men and women who held secret accounts said that the money had been set aside to buy a present for a partner.

One in six reported making significant financial decisions without consulting their partner.

Fifteen per cent said that they had taken out a secret credit card, while one in ten admitted to an undisclosed unsecured loan.

RSS Chief On Target Of Malegaon Blast Accused: Patil

In a startling revelation the Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil said in the state assembly that his department had ample proof that the Malegaon blast accused made derogatory remarks against Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat, and hinted that they were planning his assassination.

This, he said, was revealed through an audio-cassette which ATS seized from a Malegaon blast accused. In the cassette, derogatory remarks have been made about the RSS chief.
The conversation also had a reference about the use of chemical poison to eliminate a person, which comes much later in the tape.

RSS spokesperson Ram Madhav said they came to know about the plot from the media, adding that they also knew this report, which came out almost two years ago.

"We came to know about it from the media. Such reports came out two years ago when the investigating officers said that there was a plot," said Madhav reportedly.

Mohan Bhagwat has, however, refused to disclose information about the assassination plot against him.

Russian Anti-racism Judge Shot Dead

A Russian judge who had tried high-profile racist murder cases was shot dead on April 12, in the stairwell of his house.

"Unknown assailants shot the federal judge of the Moscow city court ... on the third-floor landing in the first entrance of building 24 on Strelbishchensky Street," the investigative committee reportedly said in a statement.

The Interfax news agency suggested links between the killing and neo-nationalists, quoting an unnamed law enforcement source.

According to local media, the 47-year-old judge had sentenced a group of ultra-nationalists from the Russian fascist group known as the "white wolves" to up to 23 years in jail in February.

The group, comprising mostly teenagers, were found guilty of a string of brutal murders against migrants from Central Asian countries, many of whom had been bludgeoned to death.
Sova, a non-governmental organisation that tracks racist violence in Russia, said Chuvashov faced threats against him on several radical websites.

His killing comes just over a year after the murder by right-wing radicals of a top lawyer who was also active in the fight against racism.

Deoband Welcomes Akhilesh Yadav With Photo Hoardings!

It was unexpected on the part of the biggest Islamic University of Asia, Darul Uloom Deoband (DUD) that political banners with photos be stuck on its walls and the gates.
DUD has always opposed drawing of pictures, except in immense need as for passports or IDs. The seminary has a considerable number of Muslim followers throughout the world, especially in the sub-continent.

But, to welcome the Uttar Pradesh president of Samajwadi Party Mr Akhilesh Yadav the gates and external walls of the University were adorned with party flags and his photo hoardings.

DUD is solely a religious institution and its involvement in politics is zero. Yadav who visited Deoband also denied that his visit was politically motivated. Earlier, SP national chief Mulayam Singh Yadav too had visited the institution and sought blessings from its rector Maulana Marghoob-Ur-Rahman.

Speaking on the occasion Akhilesh Yadav not only praised the academic contributions of Darul Uloom Deoband all over the world but also said that it played a key role in Independence. “Even now, the institution (DUD) is on the forefront to give patriotic lessons,” Yadav said.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Letter To The Editor

Treat Modi As Common Citizen

Sir, I thank Media Scan for publishing such a beautiful and unique magazine. The article “GUCOC: A Pandora Box For Minorities...” (March Issue) by Abdul Hafiz Lakhani is well written. Modi is the most hated face of Gujarat. I would like to ask through Media Scan that what a boy, who sees his family members being killed brutally and he does not get justice, will do. Naturally, he will turn violent. Therefore, those who have been victimized should get justice or terrorism will not end. Every person should be treated equally by the law. Modi should not escape punishment merely because he is a big politician and CM of Gujarat.
Abdul Karim Syed, Udgir, Maharashtra

Misuse of Freedom of Expression

Dear Sir, A new copy of Media Scan (April) is in my hand. I went through the magazine and found that all the stories in this issue are realistic. Article based on that what is freedom of expression and for what it is being used is well written. As a matter of fact this term of freedom of expression has for long been a victim of misuse. I fully agree that this freedom should be used for mutual understanding between two different units and ideology followers. Unfortunately it has been synonymous to a means for hurting religious sentiments.
Md Aamir Badr, MANUU, Hyderabad

Thought Provoking Cover Story

Sir, I extend my thanks to the magazine for such beautiful cover story on freedom of expression “Freedom To Hurt Religious Sentiments!”

This is thought provoking and I believe that saner elements in great India will pay some attention to feeling of 180 Million Muslims residing there.

Tasleemas are creations of great Satans like Salman Rushdie. To become famous easiest way is to hurt 1+ Billion Muslims through not really artistic writings. Tasleema is a pervert in all respect; was unfaithful to her husbands, made all sorts of pervert relations with men & women alike.

I wonder how Danish or British people would react if in the name of freedom of expression someone depicts Danish Queen soliciting sex or something is written against Queen of England. Tony Blair & his gang slapped Muslims on their face by decorating Salman Rushdie with highest British award. It is pity that Indian Statesmen are overlooking the very sentiment of their citizens only to be ridiculously praised by western countries. We in Bangladesh like to see that Tasleema is driven out of India as we think Indians are our friends & well wishers.
A Citizen of Bangladesh, via mail

MS Should Represent All Communities

Dear Sir, Firstly I congratulate you for providing us readers with a quality magazine like Media Scan. I think that the magazine will be a choice of every educated person. In a short period of time you have improved very much. I suggest you to give space to non-Muslims writers too in your magazine. Hence the magazine will be a representative of all the communities going beyond religious confinements and border barriers. I am sure one day MS Will be the identity of Indians. I hope to see the magazine at every bookstall and everywhere.
Ahmad S K Noor, Tamil Nadu

Crimes Flourish In Know Of Law Bearers!

Sir, This is with reference to the news item “Goa Police Arrests Israeli Drug Dealer” (Media Scan, April). I was amazed to know that the drug trade was running on the consent of those who are supposed to monitor such illegal activities. How can we check all theses irregularities if Anti-Narcotics Cell officers steal seized drugs from magistrate’s custody and then sell it to drug dealers? It is good that five policemen were suspended for being involved in the racket but there is a need to ensure that such things do not happen again.
Muhammad Aslam, UP

Why Sangh Parivar Does not Fight Naxals?

Sir, Naxals have emerged as a great threat to India and they need to be combated. The reports say that around one fifth of India reels under this menace.

Even well trained jawans find it difficult to counter their well planned terror activities. If I am not mistaken the brave, fearless, and full of patriotism cadres of the great 'Sangh Parivar', who are also equally trained in fighting should come forward to end the Naxal terror. This is the time, these courageous, brave, and 'patriotic' cadres offered their lives and services to protect the nation. Or, is their courage best displayed in government sponsored carnages and genocides alone?
Mushtaque Madni, via e-mail

BJP Opposes Reservation For Muslims, Supports WRB!

Sir, this is with reference to your editorial “Women Reservation Bill” (MS, April). Heated debate has been generated around women’s reservation bill (WRB). On one side are those saying that it should be implemented as it is, and people on the other side say that there should be quota for OBC, dalit, minorities within the quota. Most hypocritical stance on the issue of reservation has been that of BJP. It has been the constant opponent of reservations for Dalits and OBCs on the ground that this is discriminatory, and due to this the meritorious candidates will be left behind. But when it came to reservation for women it supported it. If BJP advocates reservation for women for giving them fair representation in politics, then why does it not support reservation from Muslims in educational institutions and jobs where they face underrepresentation? Farzana Nigar, Ranchi

Inter-district Recruitment Bill

The people of Kashmir Valley again complain of regional discrimination with regard to the passage of bill in the J and K state assembly, which allows 8 per cent job reservation to Schedule Caste members. An analysis by our Correspondent in the state, Amin Masoodi

Amid strikes in Kashmir valley, protests and clashes and uproarious scenes in the state legislative assembly, the controversial ‘Inter-district recruitment bill’ banning the inter-district recruitment was passed at the concluding assembly session on April 9.

The job recruitment policy of the state government largely perceived to be the most sensitive issue confronting the state dominated the proceedings of current year’s assembly sessions, generated heated debates and even triggered verbal clashes among members at the floor of house through out the assembly sessions.

Even the much hyped up bill saw a divide between the NC led coalition government’s partner Congress leaders as representatives of the party from Kashmir supported the bill and those from Jammu opposed it.

People at large feel that a sizeable number of government jobs meant of reserved category (SC) would go to Jammu thereby creating an unequal representation for the region in government jobs.

Has the bill really addressed the demand of people of Kashmir region? To the dismay of a good chunk of population in Kashmir, the bill was passed with an amendment permitting Schedule Caste (SC) members’ eight per cent reservation in government jobs in all ten districts of Kashmir valley since there is not even a single SC member in the valley.

People at large feel that a sizeable number of government jobs meant of reserved category (SC) would go to Jammu thereby creating an unequal representation for the region in government jobs. The bill had earlier generated growing anger among people of Hindu-dominated Jammu regions, as they largely believed that it would affect the job opportunities of lower caste people of the region.

In a way, the bill is perceived to have further renewed the feeling of regional discrimination amongst people of Kashmir who feel a let down by the government yet again.

There is a general feeling in Valley that the bill passed in the state assembly with an amendment has not only left the problem un-addressed but also formulated it into a law, which hardly any government would dare to undo in future.

There is a general feeling in Valley that the bill passed in the state assembly with an amendment has not only left the problem un-addressed but also formulated it into a law, which hardly any government would dare to undo in future. The bill, which became a prestige point for the government was largely pursued as a must-win contest between the people and politicians of Kashmir versus Jammu region. The demand in favour of the bill and in its opposition triggered strikes, protests and clashes across the state.

“The recruitment bill was amended to give arbitrary access to the schedule castes to hundreds of vacancies in different departments in Kashmir valley. It has further added to the already existing feeling of regional discrimination amongst Kashmiris by the successive governments. The bill has only tried to create an illusion of resolving the problem but it has made little difference on the ground and the Valley people again feel a let down by the government,” observed, a senior officer wishing not to be named.

“The bill passed with amendment though allows reservation to SC candidates but still a good number of candidates who were deprived of jobs in their own districts must have heaved a sigh of relief.

While as most of the MLA’s of Kashmir region remained adamant till the last moment to pass the bill ensuring a blanket ban on inter-district recruitment, most of the Jammu region representatives in the government if at all wanted to see the bill passed it was only with some amendments to ensure that reserved categories of the region get benefited.
However the member legislative council Kupwara, the district from where the movement against inter-district recruitment actually gathered momentum viewed that the bill would provide a sigh of relief to good number of candidate deprived of jobs in their own districts.

“The bill passed with amendment though allows reservation to SC candidates but still a good number of candidates who were deprived of jobs in their own districts must have heaved a sigh of relief. The movement against the inter district recruitment started from Kupwara as educated jobless youth of the frontier district were the main causality of the government recruitment policy. National Conference (NC) has a track record of bad governance and regional discrimination especially towards Kashmir region and this made the passage of bill really very difficult,” commented Syed Mohammad Rafiq Shah MLC Kupwara, one among other four MLA’s of the constituency who spearheaded the movement led by Kupwara Bachao Committee (KBC) against the government recruitment policy.

Shah who travelled from Jammu to Kupwara to stage a peaceful dharna with hundreds of people at main chowk Kupwara to press the government concede to the demand thanked MLA’s and people of Kupwara for their full support. Jammu also observed a general strike to press the government not to move the bill banning the inter district recruitment.

The bill though puts an embargo on the inter district recruitment restricting the candidates of a district to apply for government jobs in their home district only but it is widely viewed in Kashmir that the amendment in the bill is rather a political response to an emerging disgust against the alleged theft of their jobs by the people from other parts of the state.

Alleged disproportionate representation in administration is yet another tangible reason of anger brewing among Valleyites since years and this is largely viewed as regional discrimination by the successive governments. A small number of Muslims assume the top posts in administration with bleak chances of any of Muslim officers getting to become a state police chief or chief secretary at least in the near future.

According to an estimate, the percentage of majority population (Muslim employees) in the state administration is 2.85 per cent as against 4.61 per cent for Hindus, 6.37 per cent for Sikhs and 4.85 per cent for Buddhists and Christians.

Like SC’s who live life in abject poverty conditions, a good chunk of population including Schedule Tribes and other backward classes live a life from hand to mouth at inaccessible areas in the Valley and should have been equally taken care of. Far from the eyes of administration and left to the mercy of Almighty God, these people are even deprived of basic facilities of life including water, electricity and roads.

By: Amin Masoodi