SECULARISM, DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE

INSAF Bulletin 169 May 2016
Editors: Daya Varma (Montreal) and Vinod Mubayi (New York)


INSAF BULLETIN EXTENDS MAY 1 SALUTE TO THE WORKERS OF THE WORLD!

EDITORIAL: DROUGHT AND THE POLITICS IN SOUTH ASIA

Vinod Mubayi and Raza Mir

 

Several events in South Asia this month warranted an editorial, be it the uncovering of the Panama Papers scam that implicated a variety of South Asian politicians, the continued violence against secularists in Bangladesh, in particular the shocking murder in broad daylight of a Professor at Rajshahi University, or the fact that the Modi government was able to channel pretty large sums of money (at first glance, perhaps thousands of times the money they are persecuting Teesta Setalvad for “misappropriating”) to fake companies in the “KG scam.” The last mentioned event should also raise questions on how much of the Gujarat economic miracle was just a public relations fantasy that Modi used to ride to victory in the parliamentary elections two years ago. Read more…

PAKISTAN: TEXTBOOKS OF HATE

Zubeida Mustafa

 

PAULO Freire, the Brazilian educator and author of Pedagogy of the Oppressed, said education should aim at teaching students to think critically. They should work with the teacher in creating knowledge. Read more…

BANGLADESH: AUTHORITIES MUST ACT AS ANOTHER SECULAR ACTIVIST HACKED TO DEATH

 

The vicious killing of another secular activist in Bangladesh is a grave reminder that the authorities are failing to protect people exercising their right to freedom of expression, Amnesty International said. Read more…

ANOTHER MURDER IN BANGLADESH: PROFESSOR HACKED TO DEATH

Pen International

 

Bangladesh: University professor hacked to death 23 April 2016 – The tragic and brutal murder of university professor Rezaul Karim Siddique this morning in the northern Bangladesh district of Rajshahi, must be investigated immediately and thoroughly all perpetrators brought to justice, PEN International said today. Read more…

SWACCH BHARAT ABHIYAN INVISIBILISES CASTE AND GLAMOURISES THE BROOM

Bezwada Wilson

 

The 125 day Bhim Yatra which started from Dibrugarh and traversed 30 states and 500 districts to reach Delhi is now over.  Sabrangindia.in has been following the yatra since its first steps to concientise Indians. Read more…

INDIA: HATE SPEECH; HATE CRIMES AND COMMUNAL POLARIZATION

Ram Puniyani

 

While addressing a Sadbhavna rally organized by RSS in Haryana (April, 2016) Baba Ramdev, the entrepreneur cum yoga guru, while referring to Muslims said “Some person wears a cap and stands up, and “… says I will not say ’Bharat Mata ki jai’ even if you decapitate me. Read more…

A DAILY PLEBISCITE – KASHMIR, THE NORTHEAST AND INDIA

Mukul Kesavan

 

Regarding Kashmir and the Northeast, mainstream Indian political opinion – with some exceptions – ignores or underplays the violence inflicted on people who are formally citizens of this republic. Read more…

WHY BUSINESSES LOVE CHHATTISGARH

Sudeep Chakravarti

 

For businesses, it is as if the war with the Maoists doesn’t exist. As if half of Chhattisgarh isn’t a walking, talking, shooting match that ought to keep away businesses with the fear of aiding and abetting conflict. Being made liable for such action by ethics watchdogs and outraged investors. For being at the forefront of corporate social irresponsibility. Read more…

THE ROAD NOT TAKEN

Zia Mian and M. V. Ramana

 

Nuclear Security Summits have yielded little by focussing on securing small amounts of nuclear material. Any real progress must entail the U.S. and Russia reducing stockpiles and India and Pakistan reining in competitive nuclearisation. Read more…

GODSE’S FINAL SPEECH SHOULD BE COMPARED WITH MODI’S FERVENT WORDS OF PATRIOTISM

UR Ananthamurthy

 

One of India’s greatest storytellers chose the manifesto as the genre for his swan song. One needs the speech of manifestos to cut to the very core of Indian politics, the heart of darkness we call the nation state. Read more…

THE NEW KG SCAM

Jairam Ramesh

 

To pretend to extract non-existent gas requires extraordinary skill and sleight. And to banish all of it into thin air later is even more masterful. This is what the KG scam is all about. Read more…

INDIA – HARYANA: SILENCE AND COVER-UP OF GANG RAPES IN MURTHAL DURING JAT AGITATION?

Unsafe In Murthal: February 22 gang rape survivors deserve better from the Haryana police and government (Times of India – Editorial April 18, 2016) Read more…

NO LOVE FOR AMBEDKAR

Shamsul Islam

 

It is heartening to see Ram Madhav, a seasoned RSS/ BJP leader committed to Hindutva politics, praising Indian democracy, begotten by the “architect of our Constitution”, Bhimrao Ambedkar (‘What Dalits want’, The Indian Express, April 14). Madhav also demands that today’s caste system “go lock, stock and barrel” because it is a “stumbling block in achieving fraternity in society”. It’s indeed very pious, coming from an important functionary of the present government led by RSS pracharaks. Read more…

‘I BELIEVE IN THE POWER OF THE PEN, NOT THE GUN’

Jyoti Punwani

 

Soni Sori doesn’t seek revenge for the torture she suffered at the hands of the Bastar police when branded a Naxal, her true victory will be to tell her story to the world. Read more…

ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT QUASHES DISMISSAL OF PROF. SANDEEP PANDEY

Sabrang India

 

In a landmark judgment that holds out of hope for free expression, and also quoting from Voltaire who famously said “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to death your right to say it,” the Allahabad High Court today, ruled in favor of renowned Gandhian, professor and Magsaysay award winner, Dr Sandeep Pandey and quashed the decision of the IIT Banaras Hindu University (BHU) to prematurely terminate his contract.  The fact that the professor was not given a chance to explain the serious charges leveled against him was also strongly rebuked by the High Court. Read more…

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