Saturday, February 6, 2010

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Phone: 080-40993126


Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Children who write with both hands are more likely to struggle in school and have hyperactivity disorder symptoms, research suggests.

A study by scientists from Imperial College London found ambidextrous children were twice as likely to struggle as their classmates.

They were also more likely to have difficulties with language.

Experts told Paediatrics journal the differences might be down to the brain's wiring.

But they said much more work was needed to explore this. Lead researcher Dr Alina Rodriguez said: "Mixed-handedness is intriguing - we don't know why some people prefer to make use of both hands when most people use only one."

Around one in every 100 people is ambidextrous, or mixed-handed. The study looked at nearly 8,000 children from Northern Finland, of whom 87 were mixed-handed.

"Our results should not be taken to mean that all children who are mixed- handed will have problems at school or develop ADHD" Dr. Rodriguez

Mixed-handed children aged seven and eight were twice as likely as their right- handed peers to have difficulties with language and to perform poorly in school.

When they reached 15 or 16, mixed- handed adolescents were also at twice the risk of having symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). And they tended to have more severe symptoms of ADHD than their right-handed schoolmates.

They also reported having greater difficulties with language than those who were left or right-handed.
This is in line with earlier studies that have linked mixed-handedness with dyslexia.

Experts know that handedness is linked to the brain's left and right halves or hemispheres.

Research has shown that where a person's natural preference is for using their right hand, the left hemisphere of their brain is more dominant, which is where the centre for language lies. Scientists have suggested that ADHD could be linked to having a weaker function in the right hemisphere of the brain.

Dr Rodriguez said it was possible that brain differences might explain the findings.

But she cautioned: "Our results should not be taken to mean that all children who are mixed-handed will have problems at school or develop ADHD.

'We found that mixed-handed children and adolescents were at a higher risk of having certain problems, but we'd like to stress that most of the mixed-handed children we followed didn't have any of these difficulties."

Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of the mental health charity SANE, said they had been carrying out similar work.

"In particular, Professor Tim Crow and his team are exploring the idea that brain asymmetry and handedness may play a role in the development of language and the origins of psychosis. "All research which investigates possible links between brain difference and behaviour is vital to increase our understanding of many conditions, including mental health problems."



Broken Wheat -1/4 kg
Mutton mince -100 gm
Ghee - As required
Milk - As required
Sugar -200 gm


Boil the broken wheat with water in a cooker till done.
Add mutton mince to it and boil.
Pour milk in a mixer.
Add the wheat & mince mixture to it.
Grind the mixture (not very fine).
Warm this mixture.
Pour into bowls.
Add ghee and sugar to it.
Serve hot.


Arms deals constitute the largest scale business which is the backbone of many developed countries' economy. This report presents only a glimpse as to how they are indulged in fraud on the cost of common people's lives.

A recent investigation by the BBC claims that a bomb detection device from a UK security company is not effective at all. The exclusive report leaves a particularly bad taste when you consider Iraq has spent over $80 million on these devices.

If ATSC's ADE-651 worked, it could save hundreds, maybe thousands of lives. Unfortunately, it seems the device is a hoax. If the Beeb is to be believed, the device is nothing more than a radio antenna connected to a plastic handle. The whole thing is hooked up to a card reader that more than likely does nothing. It doesn't have a PSU and it does not require batteries. The London Times reports that last November, Jim McCormick told the newspaper his device was able to detect
explosives in the same way as a dowsing rod finds water.

Jim promised his ADE-651 wand could indentify anything, including bombs, simply by waving it around with the right RFID card inside.

The BBC ran an investigation report on the device, during which McCormick claimed, without breaking his stride, that the device could detect explosives up to one kilometer away.

Now, a lot of people are sceptical of dowsing for water, so it's no wonder there was plenty of naysayers who refused to believe this worked when it was first launched. And, now that the BBC has shed considerable doubt on the matter, police have opened up an investigation. A ban has been placed on exporting the device from the UK and police arrested the McCormick.
Iraq already spent $US85 million on the devices. Literally, the $US 40,000 (apiece) devices did absolutely nothing. Nada. Zilch. Experts think the insides contained nothing more than a dumb RFID card. Powered by nothing. Nope, not even a power supply. Just some snake oil.

A force spokesman told the Times, "We are conducting a criminal investigation, and as part of that, a 53-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of fraud by misrepresentation. That man has been released on bail pending further inquiries."

ATSC claims the device can detect even a small amount of explosives from distances of up to one kilometer, be it underground, above ground or even in the air. When the Times tested the device, they found it was unable to detect fireworks in a paper bag a few feet away.


YET ANOTHER BRUTALITY BY ISRAEL EXPOSED: Education Demurs Israel's Strategists

Hundreds of schools educating thousands of innocent children were blown up by Israel in Palestine; an act that deprives children of their basic right to education. Where is humanity?

Israel's military bombed hundreds of schools where thousands of innocent children studied. Does counter terrorism justify brutally blowing up the innocence packed schools? Should we say Taliban exploded schools to bring a terror regime and Israel to eradicate it?

Education equips people with the tools that assist them in getting life going. Acquiring education is the birthright of every single child on the planet. Whoever tries to stop a child off acquiring education perpetrates a heinous unforgivable and filthy crime and plays a villain to the advancement and development of the world.

In Afghanistan, a few months back, Taliban shut down the schools and received international condemnation. No such words for Israel!

The main influence on children in Gaza is the fear of arbitrary injury or death from the air and the surrounding land inflicted by all the different arms available to the Israeli army. Gaza Children can identify all sorts of munitions they scavenge after attacks. Thousands of children have had the horrifying experience of witnessing their homes occupied by Israeli soldiers who cram the family into one small room preventing them even from using the bathroom and lavatory. Thousands of them lost their homes to demolition. Israel's warplanes infiltrate Palestinian sky sometimes to pour the fire and sometimes for the sole cruel intention of frightening and disorienting civilians.

Moreover, the increasing rate of unemployment in the Gaza strip together with the escalating levels of poverty have meant that parents are unable to meet the basic requirement needed to send their children to school.

When this is the condition- life threatening and far worse than that, then just going to school is a major act of courage and bravery. You know not whether you will return home safe. If you manage to reach home safely, home is also not a safe place anymore. Just going to a school is not enough for acquiring education. You further need books, notebooks, pencils and contentment as well. Of which a large number of Palestinian children can dream of none. Families cannot afford uniforms, transportations and security. In Gaza alone more than 80% families are living below poverty line. But all goes unnoticed.

In an interview conducted by Caroline McClatchey a Palestinian child Adel responded on what he did not like about Abu Dis, his native place in Palestine "What I don't like? We can't move freely around. It's not very safe. I can only move between four kilometres, it's like a big prison." The thoughts are similar among all. Can the world afford to treat its future citizens like this!

See how Israel's terror is affecting kids globally. Atwelve year Malaysian student very accurately remarked in an essay he has written on the website "if you think the powerful Americans will keep the Jewish Israelis in check, then I would say no, no, no you are wrong. They already have America in their control, they control its economy. They dominate the American people with Credit Card interests which are at the lowest a 30% charge for the American card users and it is even more now." Do not go after the language or material, just observe and wonder how deep-rooted is the hate for Israel in the heart of this Malaysian kid.

A Palestinian civilian Abu Amjad who resides in Gaza told "My kids go to a governmental school but the irony is that I could not buy them the necessary reading stuff." And a Palestinian woman Ummul Amjad expressed her grief and anxiety saying "I searched markets in Gaza but nowhere I found notebooks and pencils available. The shops where these articles are available they sell them at extravagantly high prices." "I alone feed and earn living for my children after my husband fell prey to Israeli army's murderous hands" Saying this she burst into tears. She demanded Ministry of Education of Palestine to end the turmoil and launch a movement to stop the military and educational crimes of Israel.

On the 9th of September, 2009 a huge group of students protested holding placards that bore sarcastic and condemnatory one-liners against educational impediments created by Israel. After the protest the young demonstrators submitted a message against tyrannical Israel, to the local office of UNO, directly addressing the Sec. Gen. Ban-ki Moon.
The famous Arabic magazine 'Falasteen Muslima' published statistics which they have taken from Ministry of Education of Palestine that illustrates in last year alone 240 students and 15 teachers have succumbed to Israeli terror. Besides, 942 sustained injuries. Of which mostly are now disabled. The report also describes that many schools in Gaza have been demolished and numerous others are partly damaged. Moreover, 4828 homes where school going children lived are destroyed and 9738 are damaged. "This war ruthlessly annihilated schools, hostels, and libraries," education minister complained.

The way Israel is aiming at centres of learning insinuates that they do not tolerate Palestinians getting educated. It may well put an end to Israel's supremacy.

The lament of this tragedy should be constantly ringing in the media to neutralize Israel's courage but unfortunately it received next to no coverage. Media is otherwise busy lionizing Israel. If media, as popularised often, is unbiased then why does it not bother to highlight the shameful game being played out on Palestinian turf. If Taliban shut down schools no one feels tired reproaching it but when it is repeated and repeatedly by Israel, in far monstrous form, nobody in the media looks concerned. Why this double standard? Why this duplicity and self- centeredness? If it is not this then what is it. Hugo Chavez, the President of Venezuela rather beautifully sums up the case as Time magazine quoted him "The question is not whether Israelis want to exterminate the Palestinians. They are doing it openly." Yet the media goes on playing mute spectator to all the vicious drama unfolding. The perpetual neglect of this campaign warms up Israel's nasty warfront to continue their bombings. People often are hoodwinked into believing that this ia a territorial conflict and each group is justified in pursuing its determined end. But this disguise is no more relevant.

Carol Scheller in the article published in The Electronic Intifada, 15 April 2008 stated 'to hold religion the core of conflict between Israelis and Palestinians' is 'harmful and incorrect' but Carol rather declares it 'territorial'. In her version 'two people lay claim to the same land' and that's all. However, when we dig in we find its roots inseparably attached to religion. God knows how we detach it! Why the territory became so much important to each group that they are ready to die or kill for it? By just residing in it? It deserves a big NO as all historical proofs are screaming otherwise. Jews proudly brandish the verse of exodus where prophet Abraham is bequeathing them the land of then Canan now Palestine. Still they dub it just a territorial war. Nothing bigger!

Even if it is a war for territory alone, it is against humanity that schools where innocent children are getting education are blown up and children are restricted from attending schools. Is anyone listening? *

By U. Imran Zakir

Media Scan

India Next Only To Iraq on Religious Discrimination: US Think-tank
A report that shakes the very foundation of India's pride as its being a free and pluralistic society, said that India is next only to Iraq as regards social hostility and religious discrimination perpetrated by individuals and groups.

The study titled 'Global Restrictions on Religion' conducted by Washington-based Pew Research Centre, a US think-tank, took into account the situation in as many as 198 countries, North Korea being the only notable exception, to derive the conclusion.

Covering 99.5% of the world population, as the study claims, it deals with restrictions imposed on religion not just by social groups and individuals but also by the government.

Even in the case of government induced restrictions, India fares badly with its position in the top 40 countries out of the 198 mentioned.
India was just below Iraq and well above countries like Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan when it came to social hostility in the country. Pakistan is at the third place right below India.

The report clubs India with Sri Lanka, Ethiopia and Bangladesh as countries where large segments of the population want to protect the special place of one particular religion. "Many of the restrictions imposed in these countries are driven by groups pressing for the enshrinementof their interpretation of the majority faith, including through Shariah law in Muslim societies and Hindutva movement in India which seeks to define India as a Hindu nation," says the report.

Suicide Bomber Lets Detroit-Bound Flight Land Safely

It was a big blow to the U.S. security measures that a man succeeded to board a Detroit-bound Christmas flight with some explosives he tucked into his under wear.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, 23, tried to blow off the flight with a bomb reported to have contained a six-inch pack of highly-explosive powder called PETN sewn into the briefs, weighing about 80 grams. A government test with 50 grams of PETN blew a hole in the side of an airliner — the same amount carried by so-called shoe bomber Richard Reid over Christmas in 2001. Abdulmutallab is believed to have links with the terror outfit Al-Qaeda of Yemen.

As per a statement attributed to Al-Qaeda, the failed attack was a response to American-backed airstrikes on the group in Yemen.

"When I saw the suspect he was getting on a fire, I freaked, of course, and without any hesitation I just jumped over all the seats," Japer Schuringa reportedly said, adding, "And I jumped to the suspect. I was thinking like, he's trying to blow up the plane."

The FBI is reported to have said in an affidavit that Schuringa pulled the melted plastic syringe from Abdulmutallab, shook it and threw it to the floor.

Flight attendant Dionne Ransom-Monroe asked the suspect what was in his pocket, the FBI said, and he replied, "Explosive device."

The fire out, Schuringa marched Abdulmutallab to the front of the plane, helped by a flight attendant. It is surprising why he did not blow himself up during that span of time.

It is also said that some of the flight attendants stripped off some of Abdulmutallab's clothes, searched him for weapons and handcuffed him. The suspect seemed almost in a trance and he said nothing and did not resist.

It Is Modi Vs Ashok Singhal in Asaram Bapu case
Differences emerged between two saffron leaders Narendra Modi and Ashok Singhal over the alleged harassment of the one-time BJP mascot Asaram Bapu and the arrest of his disciples in connection with an assault.

As per the media reports, the Gujarat chief minister told off the international Vishwa Hindu Parishad president Ashok Singhal when the latter called on Modi last month.

Modi took his own time and met Singhal, the sources said, and then he told Singh that his age ~ the VHP chief in his eighties ~ he ought to renounce public life and not take up "dubious" causes.

The Hindu spiritual godman Asaramji Bapu (Gujarat) along with his two unidentified disciples was alleged and booked for attempting to murder a former trustee of the Ashram Raj Chandak. On November 27 last year, Gujarat police had raided Bapu's ashram and rounded up some of his disciples following in this connection.

Notably, Chandak who quit the Asaram alleging irregularities in it had testified againstAsaram before the Justice DK Trivedi commission set up by the Gujarat government to probe the unexplained death of two boys in ashram. On July 3, 2008, two boys studying in a residential school of the ashram (Dipesh and Abhishek Vaghela) were murdered on July 3,2008.

Bapu had campaigned for Modi but once the ashram came under a cloud after the murders, Modi distanced himself from Bapu.

At a news conference on December 22, Singhal alleged that the "deplorable" acts against the spiritual guru were "instigated" by Christian missionaries who saw him as a "threat" to their conversion activities in tribal areas.

Atop VHP leader is believed to have stated that the outfit and its sadhus and sants would meet soon to adopt resolutions against Modi and the appointment of a Muslim as Gujarat DGP in Shabbir Hussain.

UK Female Scientist Alleges Sex Discriminatio
Baroness Greenfield was the only female director of The RoyaI Institution of Great Britain throughout the 211 year history of the institution and now she has lost her job. Sex discrimination is said to be the factor behind this.

The removal of Lady Greenfield, the UK's most prominent female scientist, came after the institution incurred huge losses during major refurbishment project she masterminded. According to the reports, the £22 million project has left the body so short of funds that its auditors raised questions about its ability to continue operating.

The Institution is one of the oldest and most respected scientific bodies. It made the neurologist redundant, saying her role was no longer affordable. Lady Greenfield intends to take legal action questioning the legitimacy of the decision to remove her, including allegations of sexual discrimination.

The supporters of Lady Greenfield say she had modernised the charity, which aims to connect the public with the world of science, but had been regarded by some as too stuffy and outmoded.

Critics, however, have accused her of being more interested in self-promotion than science.

Irked By Negligence Katiyar May Quit Politics
Anguished over his neglect by the Bharatiya Janata Party the party general secretary, Vinay Katiyar, the founder of Bajrang Dal may quit politics.

I am disturbed with the state of affairs in the contemporary political scenario and desire to take a break from politics," Mr Katiyar reportedly said. The senior BJP leader told the reason why he wants to go away from politics that he had developed spiritualism.

When queried by media persons whether he was resigning from the Rajya Sabha when his term ends in 2012, Katiyar said "don't link this (sanyas) with the Rajya Sabha. Politics is temporary while spiritualism is permanent".

Katiyar made all these comments while beginning his one-month long 'kalpvaas' at the bank of Saryu in Ayodhya.

However, the analysts believe that his decreasing prominence in the BJP might have influenced the decision. Katiyar was also in the race for party president but the post was claimed by Nitin Gadkari.
BJP sources said this could be an attempt by Katiyar to build pressure on Gadkari to give him a more important post in the new team.

Katiyar is yet another 'Hindutva' leader after Kalyan Singh, Uma Bharti and Jaswant Singh who either an inclination towards distanced themselves or were asked to leave the party.

After Attacks on Indian Students: Oz May Lose $ 70 Million Next Year
The racial attacks on Indian students may cost Australia of $ 70 million as the students will avoid going there for study.

The media report suspects that the enrolment of foreign students is expected to slide by a whopping 21 per cent over safety worries in the aftermath of attacks on Indians.

Tourism Australia, in the recent predication, has said that the recent spate of attacks on students will result in 4,000 fewer Indians coming to Australia to study here next year.

The head ofTourism Australia's forecasting committee Bernard Salt expressed apprehensions that in response to the concerns that the Indian community have had about safety, the number of Indians arriving in Australia for education purposes will decrease by more than 20 per cent in 2010. This, he estimated, could cost of $ 70 million.

"The downturn is expected in response to concerns that the Indian community have had about safety," Salt said.

The attacks on Indians have intensified during the last few months and it was recently that Nitin Garg, an India student was killed in Australia leading to a war of words between India and Australia.
Around 100,000 Indians are studying in Australia.

Want Job In Gujarat? Change Your Muslim Name
It might be startling in the secular India but is reality. Many Muslims in Gandhi's Gujarat have to change their names if they want to get job.

Such a revelation made by an English Daily relates to one Mahboob Pathan who assumed a Hindu name Jayenti Bhatti for the sake of job. As Bhatti, he managed to find work in two separate diamond units in the Kapodara area of Surat.

The cover was blown only after Pathan was brutally killed by one of his colleagues over a monetary dispute. The police, who kept the body in Palsana Primary Health Centre mortuary waiting for someone to claim, cremated it as per the Hindu rituals before his family could reach and identify that Jayenti Bhatti was indeed a practicing Muslim Mahboob Pathan.

According to the reports, in the ledgers of Surat's diamond units, there are many leading a double life like Pathan. His son Mushtaq is registered as Mukesh and daughter Samina as Sharmila, and both are afraid of losing their jobs if the fact was known. If diamond industry sources and workers are to be believed, then many Muslims assume Hindu names to find work in the city's lucrative diamond business.

One of them, Allarakha Khan, admits to having passed himself off as a Hindu like many others from his village. "We would not get a job if we are known to be Muslims. We have been doing this for a long time, and we take great care not to reveal our real names or addresses at work," he told the English daily.

However, Rohit Mehta, president of the Surat Diamond Association has reportedly denied the knowledge of Muslims passing themselves off as Hindus for jobs.

Allah Is Not Monopoly to Muslims: Malaysian Court

Now, the non-Muslims of Malaysia too are entitled to use the Arabic word Allah to refer to God.
The decision has come in the wake of a lawsuit filed in late 2007 by The Herald, the Malaysian Roman Catholic Church's main publication, after the government blocked non-Muslims from translating God as Allah in their literature. The authorities fear that Muslims might be tempted to convert the Christianity by reading Christian literature.

Issuing the verdict to the effect Lau said that Christians had the "constitutional right to use Allah" and that the home ministry was "not empowered" to impose ban.
While the December 31 ruling has got appreciation from Christian community, the government lawyers said that they would consult with the Home Ministry before deciding whether to appeal Judge Lau Bee Lan's verdict in a higher court, where the ban could still be reinstated.

According to authorities, Allah is an Islamic word that should be used exclusively by Muslims, and its use by other religions would be misleading. The ban had affected the Malay-language edition of The Herald, which is read mostly by indigenous tribes who were converted to Christianity.

There is perceived fear among the authorities that Muslims might be tempted to convert to Christianity by reading Christian literature. However, Lau said that Herald's readership is largely limited to followers of Christianity and "that is a sufficient safeguard."

Basanagouda Yatnal Predicts BJP's fall in Karnataka

Former Bharatiya Janata Party leader Basanagouda Patil Yatnal has alleged that there is nothing like administration and patriotism in BJP.

While addressing a press conference in Bijapur he clarified that he was to join Janata Dal Secular as it believes in a secular fabric of India which is the need of time. He added, "I want that seed of hatred is no more sown between Hindus and Muslims."

The only agenda left for BJP is to have Hindus and Muslims engaged with each other for political gains," said former union minster Yatnal who had been a Lok Sabha member from Bijapur thrice.

He expressed his concern that Karnataka BJP paid him badly for his efforts to strengthen BJP in the state and thus he was expelled. Yatnal predicted the imminent fall of BJP in Karnataka and claimed that majority of the BJP legislators, MPs and other leaders are serious to quit the party.

Patil, who has become Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa's bete noire, accused him of neglecting party workers and alleged that even senior leaders like national general secretary Anantkumar and Rural Development Minister Jagadish Shettar have remained mute spectators.

The former saffron leader took a swipe at RSS, alleging that it interfered in BJP's affairs. He also alleged RSS to lavish on the money provided by Yeddyurappa. Yatnal said that now both Vajpayee and Advani have grown old. And in Karnataka, Yeddyurappa, Anantkumar, Jagadish Shettar and Reddy brothers are busy digging a grave for BJP.

Notably, BJP last year had expelled Patil after he launched a banner of revolt and criticised Yeddyurappa and state unit president D V Sadananda Gowda.

2009 Was Deadlier Year For Media Workers: Survey Brussels

The year 2009 has been one of the deadliest one for the reporters and media staffs all over the world.
According to the Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists, a total of 133 journalists and media personnel were killed in 2009.

While the total death toll in 2007 and 2008 was 175 and 109 respectively.
The IFJ listed the Philippines, Mexico and Somalia as the most dangerous countries for journalists in the year.

"The devastating massacre of 31 journalists and media staff in the Philippines in November and fresh violence against colleagues in Mexico and Somalia have made this a year of terrible bloodshed for media," IFJ said. The International Federation of Journalists represents over 600,000 journalists in 125 countries. Its death tally covers all people employed by media organisations who died in the line of duty, including not only journalists but also interpreters and drivers.

Visiting Church for Materialism

A church in England has come up with a novel way to attract people to the worship place; offering to bless their mobile phones and laptops. "It's the technology that is our daily working tool, and it's a technology we should bless," said
Rev David Parrot who blessed a symbolic heap of high¬tech laptops and mobiles on the altar of London's 17th- century St. Lawrence Jewry church.

Mr. Parrot added that it was to remind the capital s busy workaholics that "God's grace can reach them in many ways". He added that the ceremony had made worship "lively and relevant to the people who work nearby, in the financial district."

Parishioners took out cell phones as Parrott recited a blessing over them and their electronic devices. A few held their phones up in the air as he ran through the prayer.

The short blessing capped services at the Christopher Wren-designed building — the official church of the Corporation of the City of London, which runs the capital's bustling financial district.
Parrott said the blessing ceremony was an update of a traditional back-to-work ceremony called "Plow Monday," in which villagers gathered to bless a symbolic farming implement dragged to the church's door. Parrott said that ceremony didn't have much relevance for his church, which was "nowhere near a field in the middle of London."

AMU teacher Receives Scientist of the Year Award-2009

An Aligarh Muslim University teacher has bagged the Scientist of the Year Award-2009.
The National Environment Science Academy conferred the award on Riaz Ahmad in New Delhi for his important contributions, particularly in the field of fisheries sciences.

A spokesperson of the University reportedly told that the award consisted of a gold medal and a plaque as a token of appreciation for the contributions of Riaz Ahmad in the area of biochemical and molecular genetics.

Ahmad has also published a number of research papers in scientific journals of national and international repute, varsity officials said.

Saudi Arabia Continues Increasing Education Expenditure
Saudi Arabia continues to lay emphasis on education in its budget. Hence, the 2010 budget witnessed a rise by around 13 per cent in the amount allocated for the sector.

According to the media reports, expenditures for education and training a key reform project has risen to 137.6 billion riyals in 2010 as compared to SR 122bn in 2009.

It is seen as an attempt by King Abdullah to modernize education at schools and universities. Abdullah in
September last year had inaugurated "King Abdullah University of Science and Technology" (KAUST) which marks the first institute in the conservative Kingdom where mix-gender classes are allowed. The appropriation for education and manpower development accounts for more than 25 per cent of the total budgetforthe2010fiscalyear.

The budget includes the construction and development of four new universities in Dammam, Alkharj, Majma and Shaqra, along with the completion of surrounding infrastructure around a number of existing universities and the establishment of new polytechnic colleges and vocational institutes.

In addition, more than 5,000 Saudi students will receive scholarships to study abroad as part of the King Abdullah Scholarship Program, with a particular emphasis on technical training.

New projects for primary education will include the addition of 1,200 new schools to the 3,112 schools currently under construction and the more than 770 schools completed in 2009. Two thousand existing schools are scheduled for renovation. The government will continue to place a large emphasis on implementing its national plan for science and technology.

Official Says US Spy Effort in Afghanistan "Ignorant"
The suicide bombing at a CIA office in Afghanistan has drawn sharp criticism to the U.S. spying agency that it is out of touch with the local Afghans.

In a statement issued by the Centre for New American Security think tank, Major General Michael Flynn, deputy chief staff for intelligence in Afghanistan for the U.S. military and its NATO allies described the U.S.

intelligence officials there as "ignorant of local economics and landowners, hazy about who the powerbrokers are and how they might be influenced...and disengaged from people in the best position to find answers."

Notwithstanding its involvement in the current Afghan war the "U.S. intelligence community is only marginally relevant to the overall strategy", Flynn wrote in the report with his chief adviser, Captain Matt Pottinger.

The media reports that an operations officer called that the United States is "clueless" because of a lack of needed intelligence about the country.

Earlier, in the second-most deadly attack in the CIA history, its high-profile seven agents were killed on December 30 last year. The suicide bomber, reportedly Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi (36), is believed to be an Al-Qaeda double-agent from Jordan.

The report adds that the U.S. intelligence had focused too much on gathering information on insurgent groups and was "unable to answer fundamental questions about the environment in which U.S. and allied forces operate and the people they seek to persuade," the report said.

North Korea Detains US Missionary

The authorities of the North Korea have arrested an American who had trespassed to its border.
The man, though was named in the North Korean report, activists in South Korea said was a Korean-American Christian missionary named Robert Park.

"An American was detained after illegally entering the DPRK [North Korea] through the DPRK-China border on December 24," the Korean Central News Agency said in a report.

According to Park's colleagues, a US citizen of Korean ancestry claimed he had seen a vision from God of North Korea's liberation and redemption. They also said he crossed the border shouting "I came here to proclaim God's love".

Park is said to have carried a letter calling on Kim Jong- il, the North Korean leader, to release political prisoners, close concentration camps and take steps to improve rights and conditions.

His crossing comes after North Korea freed two US journalists earlier this year who had been arrested in March last year and sentenced to 12 years of hard labour for trespassing and "hostile acts". They were freed in August following a diplomatic mission led by Bill Clinton, the former US president

In Quest for English Terminologies Equivalents
The dominance of English terms over the modern subjects has created difficulties for the students learning from non-English medium.
In this context, a three-day workshop sponsored by the National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language, New Delhi, was organized at Jr. Shahbabu College in Patur with the very aim of bringing uniformity in the Urdu terminologies of Science, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Math and other IT subjects.

On the occasion, about 2000 Urdu terminologies of these subjects were discussed and emphasis was laid that terminologies should be easy and prevalent. This, they said is hoped will free the Urdu medium students from the burden of different terms for the actual English equivalent.

"The formation of terminologies is not an easy task. It needs to be formed a state level expert committee. The committee should figure subject experts as well as linguistic figures who have at least ten years experiences of teaching Urdu medium students at 10+2 level," expert Ghulam Kibria Shibli.
Mr. Natiqueuddin, former M.L.C. assured all types of help at the government level for the cause.

Lokayukta Complains Government's Unwillingness to Solve Peoples Problems
In 2009, the Lokayukta disposed of 12,000 complaints, most relating to the refusal of police to register cases, denial of pensions to the disabled, senior citizens, widows, delay in issue of records, building law violations and more.

However, the Lokayukta chief Santosh Hegde is disappointed with the government which does not respond properly to people's problems.

"We are fed up with the government," says Justice Hegde, regarding the administration's lukewarm response to the Lokayukta's drive against corruption. He sees no point in trying to plead with the government to be more attentive to the Lokayukta's views.

Hegde, while calls the year 2009 better than 2008, he hastens to add 'statistically'. He complains of lack of judicial powers for infrastructure required for Lokayukta's effective functioning and says it hampers its ability to meet the expectation people have from it.

Justice Hegde also made it clear that the common prevailing notion among people that the duty of Lokayukta is only prevention of corruption is wrong. "Dealing with corruption isjust 10 percentof ourwork. The remaining 90 per cent work pertains to ensuring good standard in public life, dealing with deficiencies in governance, looking into peoples' legitimate demands and others. This 90 per cent work goes unnoticed as the media concentrates only on corruption cases. Hence, this wrong notion," he says.

Hegde recalls that there were counter-attacks on them by a few bureaucrats and government in 2009.

Another Innocent Spent Four Years in Jail

The acquittal of Mumbai Haj House Imam Maulana Ghulam Yahya Bakhsh by a fast track court at Sewri (Mumbai) has once again raised questions whether police are reckless when it comes to combating terrorism.

It is unfortunate that so far the tag of "terrorists" has been labeled only against Muslims. The ATS had arrested Maulana Yahya, a religious personality leading prayers at the mosque of Haj House, on January 13, 2006; a week after the arrest of three Kashmiri youth for allegedly plotting a terror strike in India on the Republic Day.

Maulana was booked under sections 16 (conniving), 18 (conspiring) and 19 (harbouring terrorists) of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). During the early days in jail, he was first kept in an isolated cell meant for hardened criminals and terrorists and then shifted to a barrack where most of the inmates were accused of murder.

The ATS had also claimed that Maulana had received around Rs 40 lakh through hawala and arranged for the accommodation of Khursheed Gani Lone alias Lala, Arshad Gulam Husain and Ramzan Wahab Qazi: the alleged Kashmiris LeT members. The trio were sentenced to seven-year rigorous imprisonment for having detonators and firearms in their possession.

Maulana Yahya, as he ensured communal harmony in the prison, was offered due respect by hisjail inmates. "From gangsters like Abu Salem and Mustafa Dossa to petty criminals, I would be showered with sympathy as they believed an imam like me could not be involved in crime," Maulana is quoted to have said. However, the jail staff would often insult him with terrorist references and treat him badly.

It is ironic for Baksh that just days before each of the four times his bail pleas were rejected, some terrorist attack would happen somewhere in India. "Once it was Malegaon, then the series of blasts across Delhi, Ahmedabad, etc and then of course, 26/11. The prosecutor would then oppose my bail, saying I would pose a threat to the tense situation outside." January 16, 2010 was the day when delivering the final order in the case; Ad-hoc Additional Sessions Judge AV Patkar acquitted Maulana Yahya. "Maulana, there is no witness against you. You are being acquitted for lack of evidence."

Though he has been acquitted, Ghulam Yahya says he has acquired a "notorious tag" forever. People will now always say 'Perhaps he had some role in terrorism, or else he wouldn't have been jailed for four years," Maulana says.

He has also lost four precious years of his life in the jail for a crime he never did. How his family who had lost their lone bread winner spent these four years can only be imagined.

Half of the Educated Terrorists Are Engineers
Almost half of the educated terrorists have studied engineering, says a report published recently.

The report based on a research by European sociologists Diego Gambetta and Steffen Hertog have taken into account around 400 Muslim jihadists known for violence since 1970. According to the report, the number also includes 25 men alleged to be involved in the terrorist attack on September 11,2001. Nearly half of them were known to have received some level of higher education, and of those, 44 per cent were engineers - including eight alleged plotters and hijackers of 9/11.

Interestingly, Islamic studies, widely blamed for terror acts, occupies the second-place after engineering.

The study also cites that terror outfits prefer engineers when it comes to recruitment because they serve the terrorist organizations in making or deploying explosives.

UK Proscribes lslam4UK
United Kingdom has banned the Islamic group "lslam4UK" under counter terrorism laws and hence, a membership of the outfit will account for criminal offence and will draw a punishment of imprisonment up to 10 years.

Home Secretary Mr. Alan Johnson issued the order which proscribed al-Muhajiroun, lslam4UK and a number of the other names the organization went by. It is already banned under the other names al-Ghurabaa and The Saved Sect. "Proscription is a tough but necessary power to tackle terrorism is not a course we take lightly," Mr. John is quoted as saying.

Earlier, the group had planned a protest at the Wiltshire town to honour Muslims killed in the Afghanistan conflict. However, later it had cancelled the march, saying it had "successfully highlighted the plight of Muslims in Afghanistan".

The outfit was outlawed on January 14, 2010, under the UK's Terrorism Act 2000 which entitles a ban on any group which "commits or participates in acts of terrorism, prepares for, promotes or encourages terrorism or is otherwise concerned in terrorism". It can also be proscribed if they, "unlawfully glorify the commission or preparation of acts of terrorism".

Before ban the spokesperson of lslam4UK Anjem Choudary had stated, "What the people will see is if you don't agree with the government and you want to expose their foreign policy, then freedom quickly dissipates and turns into dictatorship."

He also denied the organization members were involved in violence: "I challenge anyone to authentically prove that any of our members have been involved in any violent activities or promoting violent activities or asking anyone to carry out any sort of military operations. We are always at pains to stress that we are an ideological and political organisation."

Keith Vaz MP, the chairman of Home Affairs Select Committee of UK said, "They have the right to appeal."

Students Wearing Full Mask Barred From Egypt University
Students of a University in Egypt were forbidden the entry in the university campus as they had put on full flu mask covering face the same way as does a veil.

The mater came into limelight when the student Amal Lotfi on January 4, filed complaint with the East Cairo prosecution after she was stopped form entering the campus of Ain Shams University wearing afull mask.

She said that it was the violation of the instructions given bythe Ministry of Health regarding swine flu protection.

Lotfi and her colleagues had to take off the face veil after the ban imposed by three universities; Cairo, Ain Shams, and Helwan.

After the Cairo Administrative Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by 55 face-veiled students to annul the universities' decision, they then resorted to wearing flu masks until they win the legal battle.
"We will keep going to court till we get a ruling in our favour." they said.

It is reported that a few weeks ago, the court ruled in favour of face-veiled students after they filed a lawsuit protesting a ban that restricted their access to university hostels.

According to the Administrative Court ruling, university administrators have the right to stop face-veiled students from writing their exams as the inability to see students' faces makes the proctoring process harder and increases the chances of cheating.

Nezar Ghorab, the lawyer of the aggrieved students, argued that all these steps taken by the Egyptian government and the university administrations illustrate the prosecution that face-veiled women in Egypt face.

"Wearing the face-veil is a matter of personal freedom and this is granted by law," Al Arabiya reported him as saying.

Two Get Five-Year Jail for Robbing Man of Rs. 200, Mobile
Even as the judiciary comes under sharp criticism for poor conviction rate, the verdict of a Chandigarh court sets the records straight.

As reported by the daily Indian Express, two men have been sentenced to five years rigorous imprisonment (Rl) for robbing a man of Rs 200 and a cell phone. They have also been imposed a fine of Rs 5,000 each.

Additional District and Sessions Judge R K Sondhi sentenced Vijay and Amar to five years Rl under Sections 394,397,411 and 34 of the IPC.

The case was registered in July 2008, after the two robbed one Gurnam Singh, a caterer, of his belongings after severely beating him up.

Interest-free Economy to Rescue Recession- hit World
The fact that there are over 500 Islamic banking institutions and 400 Islamic funds operating in nearly 70 countries indicates the world-wide acceptance of interest-free Islamic Banking system, said Mufti Barkatullah Qasmi, Shariah Supervisor at Islamic Bank Britain and Judge at the Islamic Shariah Council, London while addressing a conference on "Islamic Banking in the Light of the Qur'an and Sunnah" held January 10, at Markazul Ma'arif Education and Research Centre (MMERC), Mumbai.

He observed that the equal partnership both in profit and loss is a unique characteristic of Islamic banking system besides, complete transparency in agreement between the parties and complete clarity on the every issues involved. While some aspects in the modern economy are kept secret: sometimes customer is asked to sign some forms but the complete details are not revealed to him as in insurance dealings.

The ban by some countries on short selling, as Islam does, shows that Islamic principles are favourable for the present day business transactions. Barkatullah said that there were positive signs of Islamic Banking being successful in India if launched.

"In those countries where Islamic interest-free banking is in operation, not only Muslims but other businessmen and customers constitute 40 per cent of the clientele," he revealed.

India Needs Inclusive Development Policy
Attributing all the issues including demands of new states or Naxalism to the deepening social injustice, the SIO national president Suhail K.K said that it was high time to eliminate it.

The shocking revelation made by Suresh Tendulkar report that more than one third of the India's population lives below poverty line prove hollow the propaganda of 'stunning achievements of development' of India.

It is also disappointing that in poor India education is suffering from commercialization making poor children's access to education impossible. If Foreign Direct Investment in education is allowed, a move the union Human Resources Development minister Kapil Sibal favours, will lead to huge commercialization of education and cultural attack on India. "At this particular point of time there is a need to create awareness about the dangerous impacts of capitalistic imperialism on individual, society, culture, environment and politics in general and on students and educational system in particular. So, SIO of India has launched a national level campaign with the title 'Students Voice for a Just World'," said Suhail.

Interfered In Love, Woman Maoist Quits Party
The effects of love on individuals, as well as on a group, are unpredictable. A moist tribal woman, who had joined the Naxalite movement considering it a mission for the cause of poor, quit the organization when senior cadres interfered in her love.

P Laxmi alias Sunita, 18, surrendered before the local police in southern Orissa tribal dominated district of Rayagara and returned to the mainstream.
According to the reports, after joining the left wing ultras in 2006 she had fallen in love with Raju, another local fellow cadre.

The last few months have been a difficult time for Laxmi when the senior members of the Maoist groups had been pressuring hertosnaphertieswith Raju and marry Satish, another cadre from Chhattisgarh.

"It has become extremely difficult for me to bear the pressure from senior cadres to leave Raju and marry the cadre from Chhattisgarh. Therefore, I decided to quit Naxalism and return to the mainstream", Laxmi, who was involved in more than one major naxal operations in Orissa including the daring attack on police establishments in Nayagarh town two years ago, reportedly told the police.

Working Women Lie About Their Shopping Spending

Majority of the working women lie to their partners when it comes to tell about the shopping expenses.

This was revealed during a survey commissioned by Marie Claire magazine. Around half of the 1,500 working women aged between 20 and 40 who were asked whether they hid or lie about their spending to their spouse, admitted hiding from their better-halves about how much money they spend on themselves.

Forty per cent of those surveyed said they had bought clothes or beauty products which they had kept secret from their husbands.

"While once it was the occasional pair of new heels, now women feel compelled to regularly hide new purchases," reportedly said Trish Halpin, editor-in- chief of the magazine. Halpin added that it seems the credit crunch is encouraging the habit.

Mulayam to Demolish Parks, Memorials Made By Mayawati
It constitutes merely one example as to how the politicians play with the hard-earned money of common man. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati has erected statues of Dalit icons, constructed their memorials and her rival Mulayam Singh Yadav intends to demolish them once his party is back in power.

In a statement, Mr. Yadav said that he will demolish all these structures and replace them with schools and hospitals.

"Mayawati has occupied over 2,500 acres of public land in the state capital and all political parties are conspicuous by their silence on this issue," said Yadav adding, "Various parks and memorials have been constructed from the hard-earned money of the poor people of the state and we will give these assets back to the people by constructing schools and hospitals in place of the memorials for Dalit icons."

Playing political card Mr Yadav also said the schools and hospitals will be named after the Dalit icons.


Five former Bangladeshi soldiers have been executed for the assassination of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the country's independence leader and first president, in a military coup over three decades ago.

The former military officers were hanged on January 27th, legal and government officials told reporters outside Dhaka's central prison as soon as the executions were carried out.

The five executed men have been named as Major Bazlul Huda, Lieutenant Colonel Mohiuddin Ahmed, Lieutenant Colonel Syed Faruk Rahman, Lieutenant Colonel Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan and army lancerAKM Mohiuddin.

"The executions have pulled the curtain finally down on one of the history's most gruesome killings," Mahbube Alam, the chief state attorney, said.

Earlier on January 27th Bangladesh's supreme court rejected the men's appeals against
their death sentences.

Six other former officers have been convicted in their absence, while anotherdied abroad.

Final closure

Hundreds of police and special forces were deployed outside the prison, where a crowd, including Rahman's supporters gathered to chant slogans to celebrate the outcome.

Mujibur, or Mujib as he was popularly known, was killed along with most of his family in a 1975 revolt by a group of young army officers.

Four years earlier Bangladesh had won independence under Mujibur's leadership following a nine-month war in which three million people died, according to official records.

One of Mujib's two surviving daughters, Sheikh Hasina, is now the country's prime minister.

Hasina and her sister, Sheikh Rehana, survived the 1975 killings because they were abroad at the time.

Their mother, three brothers and several relatives were killed.

The men first went on trial after Hasina took office in 1996, but the process came to a halt after Begum Khaleda Zia, her rival, came to power in 2001.

After assuming office for a second term in January last year, Hasina vowed to speedily complete the trial of those accused over her father's death.

The five were eventually convicted but appealed the judgement on the grounds that Mujib's death was part of a mutiny and they should have been tried under martial law instead of through the civilian court system.



A Russian political analyst professor Igor Panarin had long back predicted the collapse of US and its division into several parts. The economic downturn and increasing expenses over wars including that in Afghanistan, the writer argues, have made the prediction possible. It might lead to a war of supremacy resulting in disturbance of peace.

As the days pass, the once seemingly foolish talk of US defeat in Afghanistan seems to translate into reality. Observing the situation in the country, Mr. Ban Ki- moon, the Secretary-General of United Nations, has recently stated that "We are now at a critical juncture." The failure of the anti¬terrorism mission in Afghanistan will signify the weakness of America and a war for supremacy is likely to be instigated with Russia being an important participant.

History repeats itself. The defeat of Soviet Union in Afghanistan confirmed that super power status was the possession of the United States. It is widely believed that the very mujahidin, whom America trained to fight Soviet Union, have turned Frankenstein. President Barrack Obama has stuck between giving into Americans' demand to the earliest withdrawal from Afghanistan-which does not suit before an apparent victory- and persistence on the presence of his army to avoid the label of 'defeat'. Presently, he has tried to make a way out by deciding to send 30,000 additional forces to Afghanistan while at the same time announcing the gradual withdrawal of his troops starting from 2011. However, it depends on how soon the Karzai government will be in a position to combat the insurgents on its own.

As per a recently released UN statement, the majority of incidents which are related to armed clashes, improvised explosive devices and stand-off attacks, have witnessed a 65 per cent increase in the third quarter of 2009 in comparison to the same period in 2008. It cites that in this period, an average of 1,244 incidents per month were recorded. According to an AFP tally, foreign casualties in 2009 reached record levels with the number of Americans dying in Afghanistan reaching double the 2008 toll. The total foreign deaths in 2009 were 506, of whom 310 were American. The suicide bombing on the CIA office is an eye-opener as regards security in the country.

The suicide bomber blew himself off killing seven experienced frontline Central Intelligence Agency officers and wounding six others at Forward Operating Base Chapman in Khost province of Afghanistan. There might be difference over which outfit is actually behind the attack, as Al- Qaeda and both Pakistan and Afghanistan Taliban have claimed responsibility for it, but it is crystal- clear that these organizations are strong enough to challenge the security measures. What is more worrisome in this context is that the incident has created a kind of distrust between the allied forces and Afghan National Army because the bomber had put on the uniform of the latter.

Besides this, the close ally of US, Britain too has suffered huge losses in Afghanistan and around 5,000 of its soldiers have been diagonised with mental or physical illness and they have been declared unfit for frontline combat duties. A report submitted to the British parliament by the ministry of defence shows that the number accounts for 20% of the total British army infantry personnel deployed in the country. The report also makes a startling revelation that some of the soldiers are below the age of 18.

In the January 18 attack militants targeted even the presidential palace among the key government targets. It has come as a clear sign of escalating strength of the insurgents in Afghanistan.

Mr. Moon has warned that the continuing deteriorating situation in Afghanistan may endanger the expected stability of Afghanistan. "If the negative trends are not corrected, there is a risk that the deteriorating overall situation will become irreversible. We cannot afford this."

There are the reports that Taliban are getting hold of Afghanistan and they are waiting for the time when US supported government reaches its end. A senior intelligence officer with NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) is believed to have said that the "insurgency is organised, increasingly effective and growing more cohesive." He said that "in 33 out of 34 provinces, the Taliban have a shadow government" and its leader Mullah Mohammad Omar has a "government-in-waiting, with ministers chosen" for the day the government falls. This testifies that time is running out and Taliban influence is expanding.

Actually, Taliban are exploiting the Achilles' heels and unpopularity of the Hamid Karzai's corrupt government. Much to their advantage is the nature of the Afghans which does not tolerate a foreign government ruling over them. Unfortunately for Karzai, he is considered the marionette of America. US could not succeed to convince Afghans that the government supported by it is in any way better than that of the Taliban. Peace, whatever may be the reason, still remains a dream for the common man.
Describing the current situation in Afghanistan, the veteran writer M J Akbar, writers in his article "A Date With Theocracy" that, "In the last eight years, for many Afghans, modernity has become synonymous with corruption, cronyism and non-Pakhtun warlords, the three hallmarks of the Karzai regime, while the Taliban have revived its image as God¬fearing, honest, clean and able to offer stability and security in the villages."

Of course, America has spent much on the forces deployed in Afghanistan but its war against so- called terrorism does not seem to avail much neither to USA nor to the rest of the world. Instead some countries, like Pakistan, have to pay the price for that and now it is reeling under extremism which have its roots in Afghanistan. The undue indulgence in wars with many countries and the unprecedented economic recession have mainly allowed people to say that now US may be vacating superpower office for any other country.

There is a view that Russia is preparing itself to snatch back this coveted status from US. However, it is not the final world in the story as, for example, China too is a big military giant. It is possible that an unending series of wars between US and any other country will be fought as the thing needed to gain supremacy is the demonstration of power. Unfortunately, despite all the advancement and progress of civilization, man finds his fellow beings the best target to show might and power. As always, the weak countries will have to bear the brunt of this would-be war.
It is most probable that Russia will lead the front. It has not been long since US had supported the Afghan mujahidin to fight a winning war against it. It is the only country that has the guts to challenge the US now.

Mr. Barrack Obama, last September announced dropping of plans pushed by his predecessor, George W. Bush of deploying parts of US missile shield in former East bloc states Poland and Czech Republic. Notably, it was strongly opposed by Moscow. Mr. Obama, nevertheless, made it clear that Washington would continue to develop new ballistic missiles defences in other locations.

We cannot say yet that a cold war has erupted between the two countries. However, the statement of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin might be taken as an indication towards it. He, following the footsteps of the President Dmitry Medvedev has echoed the same rhetoric in response to US, "To preserve the balance, we must develop offensive weapons systems, not missiles defence systems as the United States is doing." He also said that the problem of missile defence and offensive arms are closely linked.

Russia has been doing this for the past decade. A report prepared by Congressional Research Service titled "Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations, 2001-2008" reads that "from 2005-2008, the United States and Russia have dominated the arms market in the developing world, with both nations either ranking first or second for three out of four years in the value of arms transfer agreements." It further reads that both the countries made 59.6% of all arms transfer agreements with developing nations.

Prime Minister Putin's argument is that the domination of power by the US will upset balance and aggressiveness will immediately increase in real politics and economics. "By building such an umbrella over themselves our partners could feel themselves fully secure and will do whatever they want.

It needs courage and resources to talk in the tone Russia is doing with US, the superpower of today. One may easily opine that the shining sun of US has begun to set. In common, a superpower is considered to have the minimum power which makes every nation bow to its order and abide by its instructions. The US has lost courage to suppress at least Russia and Mr. Putin publically says, "Let the Americans hand over all their information on missile defence and we are ready to hand over all the information on offensive weapons systems." Such humiliating statement, had it been from any weak country it would have to face the wrath of US the least of which is the economic ban.

Though, it may be soothing for some the declination of US, it will leave its impact over the world affairs. US cannot easily vacant this seat. Therefore, there is valid fear that the fall of US will mark another era of colonialism. While many families will remember US for its aggression and cruelty whether it may be in Afghan and Iraq war or in many other policies, they, at the same time, will expect that the next super power will not follow its footsteps. *

By A Hameed Yousuf


"We have been demanding a CBI inquiry for the past three years now. Rajneesh Rai investigation had enough evidence against the state government in Sohrabuddin encounter case." Arjun Modhvadia, Gujarat Congress spokesperson.

The decision of the Supreme Court to hand over the inquiry of Sohrabuddin encounter case to the CBI has come as a setback to the Gujarat government, which had been maintaining that the state police were conducting the inquiry in an impartial manner. It has also set the political chessboard, with Congress moving the first pawn against the state government.

"We have been demanding a CBI inquiry for the past three years now. Rajneesh Rai investigation had enough evidence against the state government.

But he was taken off the probe as the government feared it will be exposed. Now with the SC decision it is quite possible that Vanzara will undergo a narco test," said Arjun Modhvadia, state Congress spokesperson.

In November 2005, police personnel allegedly led by D. G. Vanzara had shot Sohrabuddin dead claiming that they were terrorists and had come to kill Chief Minister Narendra Modi. Later, his wife Kausar Bi and Tulsi Prajapati, the reported eye-witness of the fake encounter were also killed to destroy evidences.

The Gujarat Special Investigating Team (SIT) has been till nowconducting the probe into the encounter in which as many as 14 policemen including IPS officers DG Vanzara, an inspector-general and police superintendents, Rajkumar Pandayan and MN Dinesh of Rajasthan are believed to be involved.

"The Rai investigation of the case had a CD of call records of political leaders and cops during that period. But these had vanished mysteriously. Now with tables turned, it wouldn't be surprising to see a police officer handing over a copy of that CD to the CBI. There are officers who have kept silent since they felt that the reins of the investigation lay in the hands of the government," a police officer said on condition of anonymity.

The decision by the SC bench comprising Justices Tarun Chatterjee and Aftab Alam followed the demand of Rubabuddin; brother of Sohrabuddin for a CBI probe as he alleged that the investigation by the state police was not impartial.

The Congress is hopeful the inquiry will now expose the role of several politicians from Gujarat and Rajasthan in the case.

Planning and staging the encounter

The killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh in a staged encounter in 2005 came to light after his brother, Rubabuddin, approached the Supreme Court a year later. In a writ petition on January 21, 2006, Rubabuddin alleged that officers of Gujarat ATS wrongly termed Sohrabuddin a terrorist and shot him dead in Ahmedabad to win praise and reward from the state government.

He claimed that senior officers of Gujarat ATS colluded with Rajasthan police to not only kill Sohrabuddin, but also his wife, Kausarbi, and one more person, who is now believed to be Tulsi Prajapati. Following Rubabuddin's petition, the apex court asked the Gujarat DGP to initiate inquiry into the case.

The state police chief entrusted the probe to CID (crime). On April 24, 2007, DIG Rajnish Rai — who was heading the investigation at that time — arrested three IPS officers, the then DIG (ATS) D G Vanzara, SP (ATS) Rajkumar Pandyan and Rajasthan SP Dinesh Kumar M N.

The next day, the three officers were presented in a metropolitan court, which remanded them in police custody for 14 days. Later, 11 other police officers were arrested for staging the encounter of Sohrabuddin.

According to a BBC report, sub- inspector Daya Nayak has 82 encounters to his name, police inspector Praful Bhosle 70, assistant police inspector Ravindra Aangre 71, Sachin Vaze 63 and Vijay Salaskar 75 encounters.
Bhosle and Vaze have been dismissed in connection with the Khawaja Yunus custodial death case. Sharma was suspended in 2008 for his relations with the underworld. A departmental probe is on against Nayak for accumulating wealth more than income. Aangre has been under investigation for kidnapping a builder and threatening him.

They were DySP N KAmin, DySP M L Parmar, Inspector N H Dabhi, Inspector B R Chobey, Constable Ajay Parmar, Commando Shantram Sharma, Sub-inspector N V Chauhan and InspectorVARathod. Three Rajasthan cops — Abdul Rehman Sheikh, Himanshu Singh Rajawat and Shayam Singh Charan — were also among those apprehended.

On July 7, 2007, the CID (crime) filed a charge sheet in the case against the tainted cops. According to the charge sheet, the plan to murder Sohrabuddin began on November 20, 2005, when Dabhi, Parmar, Sharma left for Hyderabad. They had received information that Sohrabuddin was planning to travel to Sangli in a bus with his wife and Prajapati in a couple of days.

On November 21, 2005, Pandyan also reached the IT hub. He and other three cops, the charge sheet says, stayed at CRPF's mess there. Pandyan then booked a flight back to Ahmedabad, but didn't board the plane. Constable Parmar is believed to have travelled on his ticket. This was apparently done to show that Pandyan returned to the city in a day.

The next day, Sohrabuddin, Kausarbi and Prajapati boarded a Sangli-bound bus of M L Tours & Travel from Hyderabad. In the wee hours of November 23, Pandyan and other cops chased the bus and stopped it near Tandola, says the charge sheet. They then forced Sohrabuddin and the other two to alight from the bus.
All the three were brought to Ahmedabad on November 24. From the city, Sohrabuddin and Kausarbi were taken to a Disha farmhouse in a Maruti 800 near Adalaj, while Prajapati was whisked away to some other location. According to the charge sheet, Vanzara, Pandyan and other Gujarat ATS officers went into a huddle the next day to plan Sohrabuddin's death.

Early on November 26, Sohrabuddin was bundled into the Maruti 800 and taken to Vishala circle. Vanzara, Pandyan, Dinesh Kumar, Dabhi, Sheikh, Rajawat and Charan also reached the spot, the charge sheet states. Constable Parmar drove a motorcycle to Vishala circle. To make it appear that Sohrabuddin was escaping on the bike, Parmar allegedly drove the vehicle at a fast speed, and then jumped off.

Sohrabuddin, it has been mentioned in the charge sheet, was asked to stand beside the bike. He was then shot several times. A revolver was allegedly placed in his hands to make it appear that he was shot during exchange of fire between him and cops. Vanzara, who is believed to have led the entire operation, then apparently asked his team to take Sohrabuddin to Civil Hospital, where doctors declared him brought dead.

The same day, the tainted cops put the encounter on record. They claimed that Sohrabuddin was a terrorist and the Gujarat ATS killed him during a gun battle.

Fearing that Kausarbi and Prajapati would expose them, the aforesaid cops killed them, too, CID (crime) has said in its charge sheet. Kausarbi is believed to have breathed her last in lllol village. However, CID officers have not yet found her remains.

If seen in origin, the police encounters with the criminals are a means to establish peace. Ironically, they have often been misused. Recently, the Mumbai encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma has been arrested with an alleged fake encounter of gangster Ram Narayan alias Lakhan Bhaiya, an alleged member of Chhota Rajan gang, on November 11,2006. P. A. Sebastian, the Committee For Protection. Of Democratic Rights advocate said that police were violating the rights of citizens through fake encounters. Many other encounter specialists of Mumbai including Vijay Salaskar, Daya Nayak, Praful Bhosle and Ravindra Aangre are allegedly involved in fake encounters and some of them have even been suspended.

Every citizen has a right to live and their killing in fake encounters for gaining ranks, constitute a practice defaming the very democratic fabric of India. Serious thought should be given to this point. Those advocating the validity of encounters complain of laxity in law which allows the criminals to escape! *

What Leaders Say?

"I hope the inquiry will find out who the main conspirator was. We all want to know the truth." Former CM Suresh Mehta

"The state government has tried its level best to suppress the matter. But with CBI, there will be an impartial investigation. Political bigwigs will now lose their sleep over the Pandora's Box that will be opened. Tusli- encounter case will also be investigated." Former CM Shankersinh Vaghela

"The court has not given its final judgement in the encounter case. In today's order, the court has asked the CBI to investigate the case. We will take appropriate action after studying the order." Jaynarayan Vyas, Govt spokesperson

"The Supreme Court's decision to hand over the probe into the fake encounter to CBI is a victory for truth. The BJP-ruled government's attempt to win people's sympathy by branding petty criminals as terrorists and killing them has been exposed." Shaktisinh Gohil, leader of opposition in assembly

"This is a very significant decision as many details about the killing of Sohrabuddin and his wife, Kausarbi, are yet to emerge (in public)." Fr Cedric Prakash, a leading human rights activist

By Abdul Hafiz Lakhani
On 5th January, 2010, BBC Urdu published a report "Poverty and hunger strike in Afghanistan" (Afghanistan main ghurbat aur bhukhmari ki mar). The report underlines that Afghanis are starving due to the scarcity of food. It also, sympathetically, recounts the woes of Afghani patients being admitted into hospital for nutrition deficiency. The account narrated by Dr. Fuad to the BCC correspondent goes like this, "The lack of food, especially in our region is really alarming. The factor, obviously, is ongoing war. Our base infrastructure was pulled down and unemployment has increased."

A report denoted ahead of this narration that the district Dr. Fuad expressed his concern about is relatively more fertile than others. The report further brings it to forth "according to governmental statistics, unemployment rate is 40% but in reality it is much higher". According to these statements the viewer is made to believe that Afghanistan is in pitiable state today.

Still further it came as surprise to the reporter that 'in recent U.N.O's categorization of developing countries Afghanistan stood at 179* position among 180 countries. Whereas in 2001 it was in 117" position!' The report held 'civilian's distance from government and escalating support for Taliban accountable' for this fall by 62 places in this category.

On January 11 ",2010, another survey commissioned by the collaboration of three international news agencies , BBC, American ABC, and German ARD, was published on BBC Urdu website titled "The Afghans are hopeful of a betterfuture". (Afghani pur umeed hain). It begins 'Despite counterinsurgency roaring, Afghans are remarkably optimistic about their homeland's fate. According to this survey, one third of the interviewed people thought the situation is getting better while the equal number of other interviewed people were of the opinion that after next year it will improve further.' Here the contradictions do not end but goes on further as the survey unfolds another surprise. The Afghani people's stand on Taliban is catapulted and now 90% want the present government to continue its rule.' One more finding of this report is worth including, most of the interviewed ones told that as a whole the condition has improved, especially electricity, healthcare and employment have got better.'

In only six days how such a mesmerising transformation transpired in Afghanistan is miraculous. But its only BBC who can certify which version is the reality. Such kinds of lucid contradictions and in highly reputed BBC's news articles are distressing for journalism. The survey reports are accessible on *

Readers' Scan

Open Letter To French President

The President of France President Nicolas Sarkozy

Respected Sir, I am a writer and a social worker. They call me a saint. Why are you against the head scarves of Muslim women?

Islam believes that men and women should be evaluated for intelligence and skills instead of looks and sexuality. Men must stop treating women like sex objects. Men ignoring outer appearance of women becoming attentive to their personalities and mind are pure men. Men should take women seriously and treat them as equals and not just chase them around for their bodies and physical looks.

A Muslim woman who covers her head and body is making a statement about her identity. Anyone who sees her knows that she has a good moral and character. Head covering with good dress is completeness for a woman.

You say that burqa or veil debase women. Sorry, it is not true. What Muslim world needs is education and understanding. Education does not mean nudity. Education means modesty with inner brightness. You fail to understand because your wife is known for pornography. Carla Bruny is a prostitute.

Nazneen O. Saherwala,, Surat, Gujarat

Reduce Price Of MS

Dear Editor, Recently I chanced to see your December issue of Media Scan. While appreciating your bold initiative in bringing out such a good magazine, I would like to suggest some avenues of improvements. Some spelling and grammatical mistakes can be rectified. There has been too much coverage (nearly 50% of the contents) on the topic of Madrasah and its Board in the issue. AQ & A(question & answer) column by eminent scholars on subjects like, Career Guidance and Health would make MS more informative and interesting. No doubt cost of materials and manpower justified your present cost of magazine, a reduction in price (say to Rs.15/-) would increase readership.

M. Suhail Ahmed, Vaniyambadi, Tamil Nadu

Minarets & Burqa Ban

Sir, I was amazed to know that a ban on mosque minarets was demanded in the secular Switzerland out of the fear that existence of minarets might Islamize whole Europe. "Swiss Demand Ban on Minarets: In Fear Of EURABIA?" (Media Scan, January).Now it is France where a draft bill is under consideration in the Parliament imposing a fine of Euro 700 on any woman wearing burqa covering her whole body in any public place and her husband twice as much if he forces her to wear burqa. Earlier, France had banned Muslim girls wearing hijab in schools saying that these religious symbols interfere with its commitment to secularism and its secular culture.

Such ban will only build up resistance among traditional Muslim women and they would try to defy the law resulting in social tensions. The fact is, in countries like these, when there is a freedom of flaunting your body in public, there should be a freedom for the women to cover their face, if they so desire and if they think it is requirement of their religion.

Farzana Khan, Jharkhand

Good Editorial

Respected Editor, I read the editorial of Media Scan, January and found it very interesting and informative. It has rightly outlawed the unjust distribution of wealth. The most important part of the Indian society, farmers, often fall prey to negligence while political agendas are formulated. I appreciate Media Scan for giving special coverage to their issues.

Otherwise, as of general media, if you go through a week of any major
newspaper in India and see how many times you find the words and phrases - farmer, rabi, kharif, rain- fed, rural indebtedness, fractured land-holdings, scarcity of seeds, procurement price.

I would guess that in an average week these words would be hard to find. Their absence tells a story-not just of the neglect by the media of a sector that concerns the majority of people in this country, but the direction the Indian media has chosen to take. From a time when the media understood its 'role' in India as one of recording all developments and reporting as much of the news as possible - including events that were not particularly exciting like crop failures -we now have a situation where the media has chosen to ignore a whole slew of issues and events, treating them as non-news.

Mohd Ziyaullah Khan,, Maharashtra

Miles To Go...

Sir, Gadkari's dead serious features better symbolise what the cover story is really up to. It is as much realistic as if he actually was very attentive as to how it may be possible to propel the drowning BJP afloat. The issue for reservation of workforce in multi-national companies being put up is really food for government's thought. Editorial dealt with it adequately. And the story written by Mark LeVine exposed the irrationality of Swiss government's banning the minarets construction. But still you have a long way to cover in order to present even better journalism acceptable for all sectors of people. Wish you all the best.

Abu Zar Ghifari, UP

Note: Our readers may request their choice of topics, comment on the contents of MS and point out the mistakes. The letter, with full postal address, may be posted to:
No. 2, 2nd Cross Artillery Road, Ulsoor, Bangalore-08, or emailed to:

Cow Politics In Karnataka

The Karnataka 1964 cow protection act is going to be amended soon. It will give undue authority to the so-called protectors of cow to take law and order into their hands.

Indians are now well accustomed to political stunts. They generally wait for political acrobats to whirl their wands and conjure up controversies. Yet each time it emerges as a bombshell and surprises them. Isn't it amazing in itself? Same applies to the new buzzword in Karnataka's political arena. The Karnataka CM Mr. Yeddyurappa's surprise packed promise to have the "Karnataka Prevention of Cow Slaughter and Cattle Preservation Act, 1964" amended during the next Legislative Assembly session. Its harm, if done, may turn out to be multi-dimensional.

Despite an existing proscription over freely slaughtering of "animals (bull, bullock, buffalo-male, or female, calf of she-buffalo whether male or female) and cow (including calf of a cow whether male or female)", the demand for some amendments in the "Karnataka Act 35, 1964" in order to protect the "holy cow" is beyond logical perception. A question as to why the protagonist of cow and animal protection not oppose the slaughter of the cattle for research or experimental purpose is frequently asked.

There is a larger game plan than meets the eye. The demand for amendment, instead of being religiously inspired, is a religion- cum-political card the Bharatiya Janata Party has thrown to win at least the Hindu voter's sympathy in its favour.

"They use me for power but don't give me good food"

Karnataka being the first state in South India where BJP registered victory is being used for it. Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) elections due to be held are important. The infiltration of politics in everything is a dangerous trend in India. Even religion is no exception.

At this juncture, the common realization among the majority of the state's residents that BJP did nothing special for them after taking office is not good for the party. Only the future will reveal how much the cow-card served BJP's purpose in diverting the mind of the public from important issues. Otherwise, as a matter of fact, Hindus don't take interest in this campaign of some politicians because many of them have also been associated with cattle in either eating habits or business. The amendment will badly affect the livelihood of thousands of them too.

Mr. Ejaz Quraishi, the President of Beef Merchants' Association of Karnataka, says that if amendment is done, "Thousands of families in the State, which are dependent on slaughter of cattle and sale of beef, skin and bones will be thrown on the streets."

"In August 2002, Indian newspapers reported that Kerala generates and consumes the maximum quantity of beef in India, and beef constituted nearly 40 per cent of total meat consumed in Kerala," writes O P Gupta in one of his articles. In Kerala, according to 2001 Census around 56% population is Hindu while Muslims and Christians, put together, constitute 43 percent. The least that can be derived from this fact is that Hindus too are indulged in beef eating. Almost the same situation prevails in the whole of South India.

The 1964 act already bans the sale, use and possession of beef and sale, purchase or disposal of animal or cow for slaughter.

That no permission for presenting the bill was sought from the "Central Government" constitutes the first step towards lawlessness. First the permission from Centre and then efforts to have the Cow Bill amended is the right sequence if rules are to be followed, told a top official.

Under the Karnataka 1964 act, the "competent authority" appointed by the state government or "authorised person" in this behalf by the competent authority have the power to enter and inspect "any premises" where they have reasons to believe that any offence of cow slaughtering is being committed. Objections have been raised over this provision too; the government can authorize any person or group as "competent authority" who might misuse the power against a certain community or group. Minorities in India have often complained that the police abuse their power in many circumstances especially during the riots. Their complaints went unheard.

In the case of the amendment taking place, these authorities will not only have the power to "search and seize any premises or vehicle or vessel" where the animal is contained but also those particular articles may be "sold by auction" after the District Magistrate approves.

In other words, the amendment will give the authorised person a free licence to raid and loot the premises, vehicles and vessels of any one they desire. There is no guarantee that the Hindutva- minded people in the government will abstain from giving authority to one who is feared to misuse power. What if RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal cadres manage to become the 'competent authority' or at least the 'authorised person'? They will turn the peace of the society upside down.

Will this too be legalized in the name of protecting cow?

What happened in Gujarat? The rioters with the support of the law protectors performed a planned genocide of Muslims. All this happened even though no authority was offered to them. In fact, the communalists are already determined to transform the democratic India into a failed state.

The amendment, seems to be one of the rules of a lawless nation where people are unconditionally authorized to invade any one's house, at any time and most importantly without any valid reason, as merely their 'personal knowledge' will suffice for them a reason. That no permission for presenting the bill was sought from the "Central Government" constitutes the first step towards lawlessness. First the permission from Centre and then efforts to have the Cow Bill amended is the right sequence if rules are to be followed.

None of the citizens will ever feel him safe due to the fear of being attacked by authorised people, without the condition of any time. Hence, there is valid fear that anyone in order to avenge a person may tease him resorting to the allegation that he is violating the law regarding cow and animal preservation.

This will lead to disturbance of communal harmony especially on the occasion of elections when politicians do not hesitate to create a clash among Hindus and non- Hindus and emotionally blackmail the former to notch up an easy victory. *

By Staff Writer

Vishwa Mangal Gou Gram Yatra: Supporting Cow Protection

Cows May Be Memory In Near Future

The Cow species which were at one time about 70 plus breeds in India are now reduced to alarming 33 breeds. Even some existing breeds are close to becoming extinct. Result? 80% reduction in numbers of cows post independence. The importance of cow for Indians, especially for the village habitants cannot be denied.

Many Hindus Are Involved In Cow Trade

The "Vishwa Mangala Gou-Gram Yatra" has lately been launched as a global campaign for cow protection and gained immediate support and acceptance of millions worldwide. The signature campaign received wide popularity globally and people are coming forward to champion this prominent cause.

Gou Bachao Yatra v/s Rath Yatra

This yatra is far diverse from the one led by former PM in waiting L.K. Advani as some may try to find a link between the two. Both are poles apart. That was Ram Janambhoomi- Babri Masjid concerned. Unfortunately, the communal flare that followed, the Yatra was supposed to inflame it.

Owing to the great reverence of cows in Hinduism, its protection, at least in India, is a must.

India has lately developed more soft power than any other third world country, only by successfully establishing a multi-lingual, multicultural, pluralistic and secular society. But to maintain this must be the top priority. Naturally, equality among all citizens and giving followers of the each existing faith and it's adherents due respect and right is the best instrument to achieve this. For instance, the Hinduism that proudly has its roots deep in Indian soil is inseparable from it. Its birthplace is India. It has grown in India. Still whenever the word Hinduism is pronounced at any nook and corner of the world the thought of India automatically comes to mind. Owing to the great reverence of cows in Hinduism, its protection, at least in India, is a must.

All Indians Involved in Cow Slaughter

However, it is no less than a tragedy that human greed jeopardizes cows well being. Besides, cows being slaughtered for meat, they have been killed for other business gains as well. More worrisome is the irony that even some Hindus along with the Muslims and Christians are involved in inhuman practice of cow slaughter. They seek to legitimize this practice by pointing out to a few Vedic verses.

Beef in Vedic Era

"In Hinduism, as Swami Vivekananda points out, Vedic age is the most glorious one. And the religion derived from Vedas has come to be considered perfect among Hindus. According to narrations of that time, the cow, on account of its multiple utilities and the many blessings it provided, was considered aghnya (not to be killed). The Atharvaveda regards beef eating as an offence against forefathers. Brahaspati (translated as the lord of prayer or devotion), it is said, takes away the progeny of those who consume beef.

Yatra Map

In some of the Vedic traditions, "a barren cow was killed at the time of marriage and sometimes for guests." The slaughter of a sterile bull too was performed for some sacrifices meant for gods.The Brahmanas who considered host of the guests next to worshipping God Himself would kill a big goat or a barren cow for a distinguished guest.

"There was a time in this very India when, without eating beef, no Brahmin could remain a Brahmin; you read in the Vedas how, when a Sanyasin, a king, or a great man came into a house, the best bullock was killed," Swami Vivekananda testified during an address to the people of Madura (Madurai) in one of his lectures. He also added that in that period, "five Brahmins used to polish off one cow."

Were Aryans Vegetarian?

The Aryan consumed barley, milk, curds, clarified butter, mutton and beef.

The great historian of Azamgarh, Padma Bhushan awardee Maha Pandit Rahul Sankrityayan has written in his book "Rhigvedic Arya" that in the Rigveda era people mostly depended on agriculture. Cows, horses and goats were their wealth. "There was none among them who did not have meat".

Hindu Religious Icons & Meat

A statement that Rama and Sita consumed flesh is to be found. Among the diet of Rama cow flesh and alcohol find mention.

Sita had said to Ravana, who had come in the guise of a saint, "Swamiji! Be seated on this chair. Wash your feet with this water. You can take sustenance as peryourwill from this forest."

"My husband (Rama) will return with fruit, potato and meat etc," said Sita to Ravana. This episode is found in Valmiki Ramayana translated by A.L. Natarajan.

Instances are found in the Ramayana and the Mahabharata of the drinking of wine and the consumption of meat by Rama and Krishna. Sita Devi vows meat, rice, and a thousand jars of wine to the river-goddess, Ganga. "Be merciful to us, O' goddess, and I shall, on my return home, worship thee with a thousand jars of arrack (spirituous liquor) and rice well-dressed with meat." (Ramayana)

According to the Hindu religious scriptures, amongst the God's creations some are eaters while others are to be eaten. Verse 30 in Chapter 5 of Manusmrti says, "The eaters who eat the flesh of those to be eaten do nothing bad, even if he does it day after day, for God Himself created some to be eaten and some to be eaters."
Towards Vegetarianism

Millions of silkworms are killed for preparing silk garments

Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism, and Mahavira, the founder of Jainism, preached non-violence and henceforth non- vegetarian diets. It is believed that it was the effect of their preaching that Hindus too adopted vegetarian diets which of course excluded beef. Otherwise, there are traditions that Hindus in India, since the Vedic era, were beef eaters.

"The Buddha and Mahavira impressed upon their followers the need of avoiding slaughter of animals and succeeded to such a great extent in changing the attitude of the people that even Brahmanical works such as the Mahabharata and the Manusmrti prescribe sacrifices where no slaughter of animals is involved," writes the historian Om Prakash.

"While Buddhism, Jainism and the orders of rulers like Asoka and Kumarapala turned Indians into vegetarians, the influence of Vedic religion primarily and later on the influx of many foreign tribes kept Indians still non-vegetarian," he writes in Cultural History of India.

Om Prakash referring to one Buhler says that the rules against the use of meat diet are a later interpolation but it would be perhaps more proper to say that these new rules came in imperceptibly with the change in the outlook of the people as a result of the teachings of Buddha, Mahavira and perhaps also Asoka.

Gautama Buddha wanted to set people free from Brahmins slavery who sacrificed lakhs of animals for God. He would prefer letting animals free than sacrificing them. At the time, people were dependent almost on cattle, hence they found teachings of Buddha more in their favour and embraced Buddhism in large numbers. The Brahmins, seeing this, imposed a ban on animal and cow slaughter in an attempt to prevent the mass conversion to Buddhism and attributed it to Hindu religion. The concoction gave way to the sacredness of the cow as the animal had already some attachments to the religion.

Traditions Contradict

But some other contradictory narrations based on which the controversial historian Dwijendra Narayan Jha has concluded that flesh and meat, even that of cow, constituted the diet of Buddhists and Jains of the early period. Many birds, fish and animals were hunted down and their flesh was served on festive occasions.

More worrisome is the irony that even some Hindus along with the Muslims and Christians are involved in inhuman practice of cow slaughter. They seek to legitimize this practice by pointing out to a few Vedic verses.

Jha says that texts from Mahaparinibbana Sutta and Anguttara Nikaya reveal that Buddhists too ate beef and other meat. "In fact, the Buddha died after eating a meal of pork," he says. He also adds, "Vegetarianism was not a viable option for Buddhist monks in a society that loved meat of all kinds—pig, rhinoceros, cow, buffalo, fish, snake, birds, including crows and peacocks. Only camel and dog meat was taboo in India."

He claims that early Jains were meat eaters. Citing the Bhagavatisutra, Jha points out that Mahavira once ate a chicken meal to gain strength for a yogic battle with an adversary. "His only condition was to ask the woman who cooked the meal to find a chicken already killed by a cat instead of slaughtering a fresh one," says Jha.

The Brahmanas who considered host of the guests next to worshipping God Himself would kill a big goat or a barren cow for a distinguished guest.

Does it not show a double standard by people promoting vegetarianism? They preach that it is inhuman to kill any living creature but use silk dresses prepared after killing numerous silkworms? The advocating of not taking the life of any living thing should be preventing them from using silk clothes. Contrary to that, even the religious leaders of Jainism and Hinduism can be seen attired in silk garments! Where is the claim and where is the humanity?

However, Buddha and Mahavira are known for their preaching of non¬violence and vegetarianism. It is so that majority of Jains and Buddhists consume vegetarian diets which automatically exclude cow meat.

Protection of the Cow Is a Must

As argued earlier protection of the remaining cow breeds should be on high priority list. The majority of Indians living in rural areas who are fully dependent on agriculture require cows for their living. The cows supply a considerable amount of fertilizers for agriculture. Bullock, not only ploughs earth making it viable for cultivation but it also ferries people and luggage in the far off areas where vehicle facilities are still unavailable. The cow products including its milk and other edibles made out of it are of great significance for human beings. Hence, it is desirable that at least the remaining cow breeds are protected and their breeding is done. But banning cow slaughter completely might not be the viable solution.

It is difficult for poor farmers,who find it hard to even manage a square meal a day, to bear the expenses of a cow or bull without any gain.

Injured Bullocks & Barren Cows

Man, naturally, is inclined to invest in what serves his purpose. A bullock which sustains injuries or a cow which does not give milk anymore or has become barren brings no good as per the investment in them. They will be beneficial if handed over to the scores of companies in India dealing in meat products. If cow turns out to be useful at all the stages, it will encourage more and more people in its breeding and they will not be endangered in India anymore. It is difficult for poor farmers, who find it hard to even manage a square meal a day, to bear the expenses of a cow or bull without any gain.

The ideal way of protecting cows is not to advocate a ban on their slaughter .It discourages people who cannot afford feeding an injured bull or an aged or barren cow, from keeping them.

From the business point of view, too, ban on cow slaughter does not look viable. There is a vast scale business of cows, their skins and products related to them. Many Hindus earn their daily bread either by supervising cow related trades or are involved in it in some manner or the other.

The Buddha and Mahavira impressed upon their followers the need of avoiding slaughter of animals and succeeded to such a great extent in changing the attitude of the people that even Brahmanical works such as the Mahabharata and the Manusmrti prescribe sacrifices where no slaughter of animals is involved.

If there is a higher demand for a particular product then to match it there is increase in supply. Most farmers will begin to breed more cows if there is demand for cow products .This way the numbers of the cows in India can be increased. Also it will benefit the farmers financially.

This is evident when comparing the numbers of cows and buffaloes in North India and South India.

Many Muslims Avert Beef

Interestingly, many Muslims residing in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka do not consume cow and bull meat. As they claim, they are pure Sayyid who migrated to India from Arabia, and hence they cannot eat beef.

Likewise, the Shin, Muslims in Dardistan of Pakistan (Dardistan is a term coined by Gottlieb William Leitner for the Northern Areas of Pakistan. It is inhabited by Dards speaking Dardic languages), look down upon the cow, avoid direct contact with them, refuse to drink cow's milk , use cow dung as fuel and reject beef as food.

The timing of this Yathra raises suspicion about its intention after RSS think tank Arun Shourie remarked that the Ram Janambhoomi issue is no longer of interest to the general public. Though the immediate purpose of this journey is stated to ensure cow protection with the help of other religions too, its timing depicts the political gain hidden deep in it.

Arabic terminologies used in goat markets reveal that Muslims originally traded in goats

The Arabs, the fountainhead of Islam, did not eat beef. It was only when the Muslims entered India, that they included beef in their diets. In many areas in India, Arabic terminology is still used in goat markets which indicate that Arabs used to trade in goats primarily compared to other cattle.

Nepal Authorizes Mass Buffalo Slaughter

Even till now, scores of animals including buffalos are sacrificed on festivals. In such a ritual, an estimated 3, 00,000 to 5, 00,000 animals and birds were sacrificed to Goddess Gadhimai. This took place at Gadhimai Temple located in the only Hindu nation Nepal. "If I give you a rough estimate, around 20,000 buffaloes, 30,000-35,000 goats and countless birds and pigeons are flown in on this day and most of them are sacrificed...," said Mahesh Jha, a temple priest.

How Can Killer of Human Beings be Protector of Cows

It is quite surprising that in reality the advocates of cow protection are also the advocates of killing of secular-minded human beings. Even a cursory look on some past historical events reveal that associates with either Ram Janmabhoomi or the Gou Raksha movements have been seen on the forefront when it came to shed the blood of innocents may it be in the post-Babri Masjid demolition riots or the Bhagalpur Riots. Common sense does not accept that those thirsty of human blood can be

The Arabs, the fountainhead of Islam, did not eat beef. It was only when the Muslims entered India, that they included beef in their diets. In many areas in India, Arabic terminology is still used in goat markets which indicate that Arabs used to trade in goats primarily compared to other cattle.

sympathizers for animals like the cow. The logic says that first priority in respecting blood should be given to that of a human being, the most respected of all the creations of God, and not to the animals which according to the purpose of their creation, constitute a diet of human being.

Is Yatra Only Politically Correct?

Many say that the worldwide Cow Protection movement is politically motivated; the same blame which was levelled about the Advani's Rath Yatra. The Yatra, a website devoted to the cause says, has been inspired by Shri Raghaveshwara Bharathi Swamiji, the Shankaracharya of the Ramachandrapura Math in Karnataka. It is a fact that religious sentiments have been utilized for political gains in India whether it is the issue of Ram Mandir or the Gou Raksha.

D N Jha believes that sacredness, in its true spirit, of cow dates back only to the Dayanand Saraswati's cow protection movement in the 19th century. Saraswati (1824 -1883) instigated a nationwide movement for cow protection which later caused many Hindu-Muslim communal riots. "The cow became a tool of mass political mobilisation with the organised cow-protection movement," Jha points out.

This time a 108-day long Vishwa Mangala Gou Grama Yatra commenced on September 30, 2009 at Kurukshethra in Haryana and ended at Nagpur on January 17, 2010. The timing of this Yatra raises suspicion about its intention after RSS think tank Arun Shourie remarked that the Ram Janambhoomi issue is no longer of interest to the general public. Though the immediate purpose of this journey is stated to ensure cow protection with the help of other religions too, its timing depicts the political gain hidden deep in it.

In Indian politics, this is a critical juncture for the RSS-supported BJP and it is in a 'do or die' situation. Therefore, some analysts believe it to be an effort to revive the party by instigating a communal flare as they had done before the demolition of Babri Masjid. The Indian history is filled with the incidents where religion was exploited for pulling off political gains. Right from the periods of Babar, Akbar, Jahangir and Aurangzeb, a restricted ban on cow slaughter was in place to accommodate Jain and Brahmanical sensibilities and the veneration of the cow.

Yatra Not Supported By Many Hindus

As a matter of fact, many Hindus and even Brahmins in South India consume beef. Perhaps, this is the reason that a meagre number of Hindus-12,039 as on January 22nd- signed in support for the Yatra. Among those who have signed up the number of Hindus from India is very less. Though the website, shows that people gave their signatures even from USA, UK, Dubai, Australia, Argentina, Venezuela, Hawaii, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Oman, Canada, Germany, China, Portugal, Poland, Malaysia and Brazil etc.


It is inferred from the facts that many Hindus are beefeaters, but also it is not reasonable for a Hindu who wants to follow his Vedic religion to advocate a ban on cow slaughter. There is no reason that an adherent should be advised not to follow what his religious book says. That many Hindus, even Brahmins, still consume beef testifies that in Hinduism, as per the Vedas, there are not instructions strictly prohibiting cow slaughter. And how can it be when some of the sacrifices remain incomplete until a cow or bull is sacrificed. It is high time that Hindu brethren consider this point and remain unaffected by the politically motivated movement. Or peace in our country will once again be shattered.*

By J. Maseeh Email: