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The Ministry of Utmost Happiness

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

Saturday, November 2, 2013

A march of the cowards

With every passing day a web of outright lies and subtle untruths, deception and demagoguery is thickening around a person who by law of any civilized land on this planet should have been long before disqualified from electoral politics and put in a prison for the overt and covert crimes committed by him during and post 2002 communal riots in Gujarat. Most of the gushing acolytes of Narendra Modi wear themselves out by repeatedly reciting the mantra that courts never found him guilty. What about Maya Kodnani who happened to be a close aide of Modi and has been convicted for orchestrating murder and mayhem? What about those on the record diabolical statements of Modi during those dark days when hundreds of innocents were being murdered and thousands were sent to the camps? And did any of his supporters bothered to know the fate of the officials who had courage to tell truth about Modi who is now trying pose himself a born again messiah? And did he ever even remotely subject himself a luxury of being remorseful for the loss and destruction of lives under his watch? 

Instead of any contrition he has embarked on the same ugly trail of deception, conceit and lies to become head of the government of the whole country. The most disconcerting feature that has marked his campaign of usurpation is the unleashing of utter lies and use of communal politics without any consideration  for any ethics or principles or proprietaries. The abominable campaign being conducted by Modi is not another run of the mill electoral practice, it is rather based on the tactic of spreading and repeating falsehood as used by fascists all over the world. With a scant respect for the facts, his campaign has been playing havoc with historical facts. Nevertheless, in reality Modi and his supporters can be nothing but bunch of cowards. 

Modi and the Hindu extremist organization to which he belongs have always believed in ideology that is diametrically opposite to that of Mahatma Gandhi and for that very reason Gandhi was murdered in a plot hatched by people adhering to that ideology of hinduvta. Following the murder of Gandhi, head quarters of their organizations had scenes of jubilation. And Modi is product of that ideology. If he were not a coward he would have campaigned on the platform of ideology that killed Gandhi. Instead he is shamelessly trying to own Gandhi. Had Gandhi not died on that thirtieth January of 1948, he would certainly have died during the 2002 riots in Gujrat and most certainly after listening to distortion of everything that Mahatma ever stood. All Modi and his bunch have now embarked is nothing but a march of the cowards and the irony is that they might even succeed.
-Rajiv Kumar

Thursday, October 3, 2013

March to the end and a journey to fanaticism

It would appear from the media frenzy that Narendra Modi already is the prime minister of India. Even though the elections are still a few months away. The media seems to be lapping every single word uttered by that man. It would be a right time to do a kind of preliminary analysis of this dark phenomena and its potential consequences. The only plausible reason behind so-called appeal of Modi is his unambiguously notorious role in not only not stopping those 2002 riots in Gujrat but rather fanning those riots through his diabolical utterances and through criminal abdication of his duty as the chief executive of that province. And to this day he never uttered a single word of regret. That directly appeals the Hindu middle-classes who through sinister propaganda have come to percieve themselves as victims of a conspiracy hatched by minorities in particular Muslims. Otherwise, the Modi developmental model peddled by corporate media is nothing more than a charade. 

The real power behind the rise of Modi is dichotomous. The one branch belongs to corporate houses and they importantly control media, which is the reason for an all out build up of a farcical profile. Big corporates and businesses would be the one to gain enormously, should Modi and his party come to power. The minority rights and welfare of poor sections of the society are never part of their calculus. This joins with the perceived victim-hood of Hindu middle-classes who while sitting in their air-conditioned living rooms keep concomitantly pondering at their plight and curse poor of the country for stealing their prosperity and wishing unthinkable for the politicians for helping poor. That is the reason for them a small time corruption by politicians is more sinful than the loot by corporates.

The second power that has coalesced around Modi is that of hinduvta forces, though at some levels it intersects with the first one. The governing philosophy of those forces is utterly deranged and dangerous. As has been said by scholars, these forces do not believe in democracy and rather have always been admirers of fascism and Nazi socialism. Modi has risen from the ranks of these very obnoxiously sinister organizations. Their parent organization is the one whose member plotted, executed and celebrated the murder of Gandhi, who was also a Hindu but not their kind of Hindu. Nothing could be more reviling than Modi going through a pantomime of garlanding a statue of Gandhi. Modi stands and does or has done everything contrary to what Gandhi ever stood for, nothing more could have denigrated the memory of Gandhi than that farce. 

If Modi does at all come to power, it will be for India a march to the end. It can't be coincidence that all those who preach bigotry should join him on this journey to fanaticism.

-Rajiv Kumar

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The elections in Pakistan

The elections in Pakistan marked many firsts for that country that culminated in Nawaz Sharif’s party getting the largest mandate. Last time Nawaz Sharif got into power, it was with an overwhelming majority and despite that three years later he was bundled out of office through a military take over under General Musharraf. The period starting from the late eighties and throughout the nineties was defined by an intense rivalry between him and Benazir Bhutto. Each was elected twice and removed from the office mid-way through their terms. Both had one common factor binding them and that was both governed Pakistan as badly as anybody could imagine. It was said that she doesn’t listenand he doesn’t understand. Nawaz Sharif came into politics as a protégé of Zia-ul-Haq and after the death of the late dictator he came into his own with his strong base in politics and business in Punjab. In his second time as the prime minister with a two-thirds of parliamentary majority he started to put his markon judicial and military appointments. That is when he replaced Jahangir Karamat as army chief with his nemesis Parvez Musharraf. It was a reenactment of appointment of Zia-ul-Haq to the post by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Parvez Musharraf stuck to power until his forced removal in 2008 with Benazir Bhuttohaving been assassinated during electioneering. The real triumph of theelections in Pakistan has been the democratic process itself and remarkable success of party lead by Imran Khan in general and in particular in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, which saw total decimation of National Awami Party of the descendants of Ghaffar Khan. Anybody disappointed with the process and outcome should have seen a picture of General Kayani casting his vote. Those are the kind of incremental changes that are lasting;revolutions on the other hand, most of the time, turn out to be short-lived. The task facing new government including the controlling of drones raining from the sky could hardly be termed envious.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

The day India sullied itself again

On February 9, 2013 at eight in the morning, the Indian state executed Mohammed Afzal Guru for his involvement in an attack on the parliament in 2002. The Indian police had him implicated within three days of the attack. Based on only circumstantial evidence, with not a single eyewitness, Mohammed Afzal was sentenced to death by a trial court. The Supreme Court, in the words of the court itself, ‘to satisfy the collective conscience’, upheld that sentence eventually. To put meaning into it would read that they decided to put a human being to death without conclusive evidence to satiate the blood lust of the Indian nation.

The basic tenet of any law states that a person can only be convicted for any crime based on evidence beyond reasonable doubt. The evidence in the case of Mohammed Afzal did certainly not meet those criteria of beyond reasonable doubt. Mohammed Afzal did not at any stage have a proper legal representation, which justices of the Supreme Court chose to ignore.  Perhaps for those justices it is more important to take cognizance of the press reports detailing who slipped on the road to a pilgrimage than the proper representation of an innocent being charged with a crime that could invoke death penalty.

Almost eight years after the Supreme Court upheld the death sentence, Mohammed Afzal Guru was executed in the prison conveniently ignoring all the proper conventions and decencies. By their own admittance, the authorities allegedly informed his family only by a speed post; but the family learnt about the execution only through news. The family has even been denied to carry out last rites for the deceased executed by the Indian state to satisfy collective conscience.

It couldn’t have got more appalling than to see people actually celebrate the execution. Communalists and secularists, capitalists and socialists were all seen to be jubilant. Only if they would care to know that those are the symptoms of a fascist state in making. The police in Delhi outsourced its duties to the thugs of saffron brigade and actually facilitated them in physically beating those who tried to protest peacefully against the execution of Mohammed Afzal by the Indian state.

And if Indians still think that one day Kashmiris can be won over, the Indian state nailed the last nail in the coffin of that hope by cold bloodedly executing Mohammed Afzal against all evidences.  Should the Indian state or its people be under the impression that people of Kashmir can be coerced into submission through gross revulsive tactics, they better read history. All that happened in the execution of Mohammed Afzal was that India sullied itself again.
 -Rajiv Kumar

Saturday, January 5, 2013

And then they talk about conscience

On that December night when those inhuman barbarians were brutalizing a young girl and her companion, the Indian capital Delhi went about its business in oblivion. They were driven around the city for two hours; they could driven them anywhere even close to colonial government quarters of the capital, where the inhabitants still live in Raj era. And then the victims were thrown out on the road naked and almost dead and spectacularly, not a single passerby came to help them. People stopped and gawked at them and left. Even final advent of police personal didn't help much, because they got bogged down in feudal dispute over the turf. One victim had to help another into a vehicle. The young victim has already departed this world and now the remaining victim has tried to tell the real story and as it happens he is the only who actually knows what happened. And instead of some soul searching, the thugs of Delhi police are lining up to deny the account of that night by the only surviving witness. They moved quickly to file charges against the news channel that conducted the interview. Only if they had moved that night that quickly. The only thing that one learns from this barbaric incident is that nobody comes out unblemished. Public apathy was in complete synchronization with disgusting disinterest of the entire political class. The Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, a man with mentality of a petty bureaucrat that measures everything in terms of stock exchange numbers and growths per quarter, was at his pathetic best. The public apathy, until something triggered a stream of protests, has it origin in induced desensitization. When somebody would mention rape of women in Kashmir by Indian armed forces, those very members of the public would just snigger. The ex-army man, who had temerity to participate in the protests, has been on the record, viciously undermining gruesome Pathribal murders. And importantly, have those protests enlightened the residents of Delhi about the plight of Soni Suri. The unfortunate victim was brutalized by hardened thugs but those who brutalized Soni Suri have been awarded gallantry medals. And then they talk about conscience!
-Rajiv Kumar