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The Ministry of Utmost Happiness has become one of the most reviewed books since and even before its publication in June 2017. The antici...

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The world view : Afghanistan

It is quite refreshing to see overall optimism and definitely a new sense of purpose on the world stage ever since Obama ascended Presidency of United States. The gratification stems from the fact that despite economic down turn one can see a glimmer of hope over the horizon. Down side of such a world view is that it can accompany complacency as the towering problems, regional imbalances and the wide spread chasm and deprivations cannot and will not disappear without being addressed squarely. The wrongs committed since time immemorial and aggravated and neglected during the Bush presidency due to lack of shear willingness or capacity to understand have created fragile situation which demand immediate genuine address. Unfortunately, there are no solutions, which can be pulled out by use of a magic wand but would require delicate hard work, willingness to understand and work towards assuaging the hurt sensibilities caused by years of ignorance and arrogance of powers to be. The region that requires immediate and without fail any attention is the conundrum in Afghanistan, which has has now almost overtaken much of polity and geography in Pakistan. One can be forgiven for being cynical about genuineness of the efforts being made, which brings the realization if problem is really understood. In the absence of basic and unbiased understanding no solution is going to have any lasting effect. Increase in the number of NATO troops in spring and a decrease in autumn, in an imitation of out of depth federal reserve and other world bankers in a desperate attempt to save capitalism, will definitely will not have any impact and will certainly not stop swelling of jihadi ranks. The impending implosion of Pakistan has its roots in its very creation and subsequent failure in establishment of a genuine political system and long unchecked periods of unbridled military regimes who did bidding for Western alliance up to the near end of cold war era. And the Western power while prophesying democracy had no scruples to deal with and encourage dictatorial military regimes in the country starting from Ayub Khan during to cold war era to Parvez Musharraf in the reign of war on terror. The parallel happenings in Afghanistan with deposition of King Zaheer in 1973 and subsequent violent changes of regimes until the ill conceived Soviet invasion in 1979 created a ground for the proxy battle between two super powers and both had no scruples in forwarding own interests at the cost of the fragile region including its impoverished population. The turmoil in Afghanistan spilled over to Pakistan in the form of refugees and the overlapping ethnic affinities in the frontier regions of two countries generated a common state of crisis, which regime in Pakistan set out to exploit to the hilt. The new found status as a front line state against spread of communism brought legitimacy to Zia-ul-Haq regime in Pakistan and opened the flood gate to Western and Middle Eastern aid in the form of cash and weaponry. Fighters of all hues, nationalists to fundamentalists, were all heavily rewarded for fight against soviet occupation and opium cultivation never was never a problem. In fact, the cash generated from the proceeds of drug pedaling was spent on arms for fight against Soviets. Westerner and Pakistan intelligence agencies joined hand in training jihadis. The scenario started unraveling aftere the collapse of soviet block and withdrawal of occupation force. Mujahideens and ward lords who had made profession out of their fight against communism, now turned on each and like never before a total chaos over took Kabul and rest of Afghanistan. This was the very oppurtune moment when west took its leave from the forsaken place and left it to fend itself.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Prime Minister in lurking: Narender Modi

Criminality always comes to haunt, notwithstanding the time elapsed. Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar will testify how their misdeeds over a quarter of century back refuse to be wished away. So the moral conclusion for Narender Modi should be very clear, whom sycophants have been trying to project as a latter day saviour of India. He cannot escape the day of reckoning for his crimes of either direct abetment or of criminal negligence of governance during 2002 Gujrat riots. The administration under his control watched congress MP Ehsan Jafri die and still apologists claim that Modi is innocent and he is the person who can lead India into future. If that is future India is heading, may be it is time to delve into the desensitized Indian conscience. If that was the fate of a MP, it should not take too much of an imagination to imagine happenings to less fortunate from minority community. That does not even concern corporate captains, who blinded by a common greed, see a visionary in Modi. The only problem with that so-called visionary is that his vision is flawed and bigoted.

BBC E-mail: Gujarat Muslims the 'living dead'

** Gujarat Muslims the 'living dead' **
The BBC's Soutik Biswas meets displaced victims of the 2002 anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat for whom the Indian elections hold little meaning.
< http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/2/hi/south_asia/8011615.stm >


Monday, April 27, 2009

Probe Narendra Modi's role in Gujarat riots: SC

New Delhi, April 27, 2009
Indo-Asian News Service
New Delhi, April 27, 2009

The Supreme Court on Monday asked a special probe panel formed by it to look into the allegations that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi along with over 50 other politicians and government officials had aided and abetted statewide communal riots in 2002.

A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Asok Kumar Ganguly directed the panel headed by former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director R K Raghavan to particularly look into the allegations that Modi was involved in the killing of an MP in Ahmedabad's Gulbarga Society arson case.

The panel was asked to file its report within three months.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Firaaq

During the Indian election season one can frequently hear voices yearning to have Narender Modi as next Prime Minister. One cannot help being cynic to see the nation of Mahatma become desensitized to the extent that a person under whose government worst possible communal riots were perpetrated is being touted as a saviour of the nation. Those who think of that carnage as a casual incidence are recommended to see 'Firaaq' where Nandita Das has recreated the sorry saga of aftermath of Gujarat riots. Every time there is a mention of that carnage people, never affected by anything in their lives, start indulging in mindless discussion about who started what. The fundamental truth remains no matter who started those riots Gujarat under Narender Modi was allowed to burn with official state machinery watching from the periphery and minority community made hapless under the unprecedented communal assault. The worst dictators in the history, removed from scene after wanton losses of lives, were hailed by sycophants as a good administrators. In all the bleakness the silver line in the form people like Nandita Das remain on the horizon to remind after all everything is not lost.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Advani did it again

Obama bin Laden...oops Osama: Advani's gaffe
Indo-Asian News Service
Mumbai, April 17, 2009
In a glaring slip of tongue, Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate LK Advani on Friday uttered the name "Obama bin Laden" instead of the infamous Osama bin Laden but quickly corrected himself.
Advani, while addressing a press conference here, was referring to an initiative of US President Barack Obama's administration to target tax havens from where Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden may have been getting funds. But instead of Osama, Advani said “Obama bin Laden”!