SECULARISM, DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE

INSAF Bulletin 148 August 2014
Editors: Daya Varma (Montreal) and Vinod Mubayi (New York)


This issue of INSAF Bulletin is dedicated to the brave Palestinian children, women and men, displaced from their homeland and facing a Hitlerite assault from one of the most sophisticated military powers supported by all the imperialist countries of the world. INSAF Bulletin supports the right of Palestinians to defend themselves.

OPPOSE BJP GOVT.’s SHAMEFUL DEFENSE OF ISRAEL

Editors

 

Israel’s murderous assault on Gaza is now reaching genocidal proportions with over 1500 Palestinians killed and many thousands gravely injured, three-quarters of them admitted to be civilians, even by the Israeli authorities, and many of them small children, women, and the elderly. Read more…

INDIA – ISRAEL FACT SHEET

(Source Wikipedia)

 

India did not subscribe to the Partitioning of Palestine plan of 1947 and voted against Israel’s admission in the United Nations in 1949. Read more…

WAGING WAR IS NOT A RIGHT

Rahul Varma and Majdi Bou-Matar

 

We, as artists committed to social justice, respect for human life and world-peace, and in a resolute opposition to war, violence and destruction – oppose the war in Gaza and invite dialogue for achieving a just peace for all. Read more…

DISTINGUISHED ISRAELI HISTORIAN EXPOSES LIES of REGIME on GAZA

The distinguished Israeli historian Ilan Pappé, now teaching at the University of Exeter, U.K., has revealed in a recent interview with Harrison Samphir on July 19, 2014 published in the e-paper Truthout that Israel’s aims in Gaza have “not changed since 2008. Ever since the Palestinians have democratically elected a government in the Gaza Strip, they were subjected in the Strip to a policy of siege, strangulation and ghettoization. Read more…

AN OPEN LETTER FOR THE PEOPLE IN GAZA (The Lancet)

(The Lancet, Early Online Publication, 23 July 2014; doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(14)61044-8Cite or Link Using DOI; Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.)

 

Lancet is one of the most prestigious medical journal and the oldest. The First issue of The Lancet  wast published in 1823 Read more…

PAIN IN GAZA

 

 

It is hard not to cry watching the unfolding horror in Gaza, children with heads blown off, pregnant woman with body torn by a shell, babies with missing limbs, targeting of playing children, targeting hospitals, targeting ambulances, and even a handicap center killing two handicap children.  Israeli forces then ratcheted up their attacks committing large scale massacres in places like Shujaia and Beit Hanoun. 80% of the victims are elderly, women and Children (over 110 children so far). Though mainstream western media self-sensors to comply with the Zionist lobby, the truth is coming out and the videos and pictures are horrific. Our friends in Gaza issue desperate calls to us. Israel cannot absolve itself by saying we asked people to evacuate (110,000 are homeless already). Forcing people out of their homes is a crime against humanity let alone bombing those who remain. But CNN and other western media run by Zionists interview colonizer leaders like Netanyahu who is a habitual liar and do not interview representatives of the victims or the resistance. Read more…

Dr. MADS WITH A PATIENT IN GAZA

Below is a letter from Dr. Mads Gilbert, a physician working in Gaza.

 

Dearest friends -

 

Last night was extreme. The “ground invasion” of Gaza resulted in scores and carloads with maimed, torn apart, bleeding, shivering, dying – all sorts of injured Palestinians, all ages, all civilians, all innocent. Read more…

THOUSANDS RALLY IN TEL AVIV AGAINST ISRAEL WAR ON GAZA

Thousands of Israelis have taken to the streets in Tel Aviv to condemn the

incessant military strikes against the Palestinians in the besieged Gaza

Strip, which have killed more than 1,000 people and wounded many more since

July 8. Read more…

SANSAD RESOLUTION CONDEMNS CANADIAN GOVERNMENT FOR SUPPORTING ISRAELI MASSACRE OF PALESTINIANS

Resolution presented to SANSAD (South Asia Network for Secularism and Democracy) AGM 2014

 

Whereas, Israel is an occupying power in Palestine with responsibility in international law to protect civilians, Read more…

PROTESTS AGAINST ISRAELI MASSACRE OF PALESTINIANS

While Israeli attack in Gaza has received direct or indirect approval of most western governments  with Canadian government being most vocal, people the world over have been enraged. Massive anti-Israeli demonstrations were held in London, Sydney Australia, Montreal, New York and numerous other cities. Protests were also held in Third world countries such as   Turkey, Seoul, China, Indonesia, etc. Read more…

ITUC CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE CEASEFIRE IN GAZA

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), representing 176 million workers around the globe, issued a call for an immediate ceasefire in the fighting between Israel and Palestinians in Gaza. Read more…

STATEMENT OF NTUI (NEW TRADE UNION INITIATIVE, INDIA) ON GAZA

The murderous attack of Israel on Gaza that began on 3 July is like all Israel’s attacks on Palestine without justification and lacking in proportion. Read more…

MESSAGE FROM 8th MARCH COMMITTEE OF WOMEN OF DIVERSE ORIGINS IN SOLIDARITY WITH GAZA:

(Spoken at demo in Montreal, Canada, Wednesday 16 July 2014; (supplied by Dolores Chew)

 

We are here this evening to express our solidarity and love with you, our sisters, the women of Gaza and their families and communities.  We are appalled at the attacks they are suffering, a genocide of the Palestinian people, and we demand that it stops. Read more…

INDIAN BUDGET 2014: MORE OF THE SAME: EXTENDING UPA’S NEOLIBERAL POLICIES

Mritiunjoy Mohanty

 

The economy is in a deep hole but one would not get that sense from reading the budget or the accompanying Economic Survey. Indeed quite the opposite. The Government seems to suggest that the growth deceleration that economy has witnessed over the last three years has bottomed out and that 2014/15 should see a resumption of the upward growth curve. It is estimated that in 2014/15 GDP growth will be in the range of 5.4-5.9% as opposed to less than 5% in the preceding two years.  The current account deficit has seen a sharp improvement from 4.7% in 2012/13 to 1.7% in 2013/14 and finally inflation has decelerated as well.  The Finance Minister has taken the slow and steady route and will introduce more reforms that will get the economy back to 7-8% growth in the medium term. Read more…

THE 2014 BUDGET A DISAPPOINTMENT FOR SCIENTIFIC COMMUNITY

V.V. Krishna

 

After a decade-long policy paralysis in science, technology and higher education research during UPA I and II, the Indian science community was waiting with optimism. To its disappointment, the budget did not commit any substantial funding that the field of Science and Technology (S&T) deserves. It also failed to give any signals to strengthen the research and innovation base of our ailing 700 universities and 30,000-plus colleges. Read more…

INDIAN PRIME MINISTER’S RECALCULATION OF HOW LONG INDIANS HAVE BEEN ‘SLAVES’ -1200 YEARS

Hasan Suroor

 

Good lawyers and good historians have one thing in common: both are quick to spot the crucial small print that ordinary folk miss the significance of. So, as politicians and the media were concentrating on the big picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s maiden Lok Sabha speech, historians were struck by his reference to “1,200 years of slavery”, which, he said, had left Indians with a slavish mentality. Read more…

INDIA: HINDUTVA DRIVEN EDUCATION COMING SOON AT YOUR DOORSTEP

Ritu Sharma

 

Science lesson from Gujarat: Stem cells in Mahabharata, cars in Veda.

 

Gujarat’s new compulsory reading list for government primary and secondary students doesn’t just seek to educate students on “facts” about India’s culture, history and geography. It also has its own take on science, particularly landmark inventions. Read more…

SAFFRONISATION OF EDUCATION

G Sreedathan

 

Sangh sets up panel to push ‘saffronisation’ of education Commission to study the present education system and suggest corrective steps to make it Bharat-centric. Read more…

IDEA OF INDIA NATIONAL CONVENTION

July 4-5, 2014, New Delhi

Call to JOIN US

 

Central to our idea of India is the affirmation of its diversity. The India we are part of belongs equally to all persons who make it its own – no matter what their religious faith (or the lack of it), their gender, caste, class, language, physical abilities and sexual orientation. The bedrock of the Indian republic is the promise that all its citizens can find space in which to practise their beliefs and cultures, and live freely, confident they will be equally protected by the law of the land. Read more…

COMPLETE TEXT OF RANA AYYUB’S CENSORED ARTICLE ON AMIT SHAH

(Supplied by New Socialist Initiative, July 12, 2014

 

Note: This article by Rana Ayyub was published in Daily News & Analysis (DNA) titled “A New Low in Indian Politics” on 9th July. However, on 11th July DNA pulled the article down from its website. This is not the first time DNA has pulled down articles which are critical of Modi and his cohorts. On 29th April it published an article by Shehzad Poonawala titled ”9 Myth Busters: Lest We Forget the Genocide of 2002″only to pull it down from it’s website within 12 hours of its publication. Read more…

INDIA: FEDERATION OF COMMUNITIES

Irfan Engineer

 

The Council of Ministers of the State of Maharashtra in its meeting on 25th June 2014 (Council Meeting No. 171) gave its approval for 16 per cent reservations for Maratha community (roughly 32% of the state’s population and in addition to the Kunbi Marathas, already included in the list of OBCs in Maharashtra) and 5 per cent reservation for 50 backward Muslim communities (roughly 10.6% of the state’s population, and in addition to Julahas, Momins, Ansaris, Rangrez, Telis, Nakkashis, Muslim Kakar, Pinjaris, Fakirs, etc. already included in the OBC list in Maharashtra) in jobs and education in the state. Read more…

DEBATING SECULARISM IN A COMMUNALIZED SOCIETY

Ram Puniyani

 

In the aftermath of the recent elections Congress, Communist parties, Samajvadi and Lalu’s RJD, which can be called secular in some sense, bit the dust.  In the review of defeat the major opposition party Congress, which has been in power for maximum number of years, one major opinion from its top leader A.K. Antony came forth to say that the secularism practiced by Congress was seen more as an appeasement of minorities (read Muslims) and so the large sections turned against it emasculating it to a mere 19% votes with 44 seats in Lok Sabha. In a free for all different opinions on secularism, and failure of Congress are coming forth. Read more…

SUBVERSION OF JUSTICE

Pratiksha Baxi

 

Associate Professor, Centre for the Study of Law and Governance, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India

 

On May 22, 2014, a lawyer from Tis Hazari molested and attacked a Naga1 woman student at the Delhi University metro station. The assailant lawyer was nabbed and handed over to the police. Read more…

FIGHTING TO DEFEND THE INCLUSIVE IDEA OF INDIA

In a display of rare unity, various civil, cultural and human rights activists, academicians, journalists and public intellectuals came together on one platform to defend what they termed “the inclusive, pluralistic and diverse idea of India” against the onslaught of the “majoritarian idea of India” during a two-day conclave held here, which concluded on Saturday. Read more…

BJP-LED GOVERNMENT IS ATTEMPTING TO STIFLE INDIA’S VIBRANT PLURALITY AND DIVERSITY

Pavan K Varma

 

It has been less than six weeks since Narendra Modi became prime minister, but I am almost certain that several times during this period the thought must have come to him that it was so much simpler to be in the opposition happily criticizing the UPA government. Read more…

THE WORLD BEFORE HER: TWO WOMEN, TWO WORLDS

Sudhish Kamath

 

Very rarely do we see the world through the eyes of the heroine in Indian cinema.

 

Most of it, if not all, has been the hero’s journey. The heroine is always playing a supporting role or a cheerleader. Read more…

HINDU NATIONALISM IN THE UNITED STATES: A REPORT ON NONPROFIT GROUPS

by J.M.

 

[Released via sacw.net - 1 July 2014]

 

Executive Summary

 

1. Over the last three decades, a movement toward Hinduizing India—advancing the status of Hindus toward political and social primacy in India— has continued to gain ground in South Asia and diasporic communities. The Sangh Parivar (the Sangh “family”), the network of groups at the forefront of this Hindu nationalist movement, has an estimated membership numbering in the millions, making the Sangh one of the largest voluntary associations in India. The major organizations in the Sangh include the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Bajrang Dal, and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Read more…

HINSACHAR VIRODHI NIRDHAR YATRA (Anti-violence march)

Irfan Engineer

 

In response to the increasing incidents of violence directed particularly towards marginalised groups, a yatrawas undertaken by the Rashtriya Ekta Manch on June 27 and 28, 2014. Rashtriya Ekta Manch’s constituent organizations include Maulana Azad Vichar Manch, Mahila Vikas Kendra, Satyashodhak Vidyarthi Sanghatana, RPI, Sambhaji Brigade, Maratha Mahasangh and others. All India Secular Forum also joined theyatra. Read more…

BANGLADESH — ATTACKS ON INDIGENOUS PEOPLE IN CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS

 

 

On 5 July 2014, a commission of inquiry, including eminent persons of Bangladesh — Co-Chair, advocate Sultana Kamal and members Ms. Khushi Kabir, Dr. Iftekharuzzaman, Dr. Shapan Adnan, Barrister Sara Hossain, and CHTC [Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission] Secretariat Coordinator Ms. Hana Shams Ahmed and Research Fellow and Journalist Ms. Illira Dewan — was attacked in the Rangamati Hill Tracts.  The commission was carrying out its 7th mission from 2-8 July. Read more…

NEWS FROM EQBAL AHMED CENTRE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION, PAKISTAN

We are pleased to announce the inclusion of John Charles Polanyi as a member of the EACPE advisory board. Read more…

NEW BOOK RELEASE

The Search for Lasting Peace: Critical Perspectives on Gender-Responsive Human Security Read more…

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