SECULARISM, DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE

INSAF Bulletin 144 April 2014
Editors: Daya Varma (Montreal) and Vinod Mubayi (New York)

WHY IS MODI THE FRONT RUNNER?

Vinod Mubayi and Daya Varma

 

Numerous polls carried out by well-known polling organizations indicate that BJP candidate Modi is the front-runner for the position of Prime Minister by a wide margin when compared to Rahul Gandhi of the Congress.  Some commentators have cast doubt on the validity of these poll results but they probably represent the majority views of the voters most likely to vote in the elections next month: the urban Hindu middle class voter whose views will strongly influence the outcome of the election. Read more…

CALL FOR DEFEATING AUTHORITARIAN FORCES LED BY NARENDRA MODI

Press statement by citizens for Democracy: (March 29, 2014) Read more…

TO STEER POLITICAL DISCOURSE IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION

Praful Bidwai  (March 20, 2014)

 

All those who discounted the Aam Aadmi Party’s potential for stirring things up in national politics must revise their assessment after Arvind Kejriwal’s recent “inspection tour” of Gujarat. The issues he raised in the series of questions he posed to Narendra Modi ranged from corruption and sweetheart deals with Big Business, to power shortages, closure of industries and 800 farmers’ suicides. Read more…

INDIA’S LEFT FACES MAJOR CHALLENGES AS ELECTION APPROACH

Praful Bidwai (Feb 26, 2014)

 

India’s Left parties, among the world’s biggest parties belonging to the Communist tradition, face formidable challenges as they approach the 2014 national election. The election will play a major role in deciding if they can reverse the setbacks they recently suffered, or go into a steep decline, with a fall in membership, decreasing political influence, and growing organisational dissonance. Read more…

THIRD FRONT POLITICS: AN IDEA WHOSE TIME HAS PASSED

Sukumar Muralidharan (March 7, 2014)

 

It took just ten days for one of the principal props of the new experiment in “third force” (TF) politics to give way, threatening the stability of the entire edifice. Read more…

SYMPTOMS OF FASCISM

Ram Puniyani

 

Fascism in its naked form first emerged in Europe on the eve of World War II. Can it happen in India? Read more…

HINDUTVA AND MINORITIES

Irfan Engineer  (Secular Perspective March 16-31, 2014)

 

Rajnath Singh, the BJP president while addressing the Muslims on 25th February 2014 sought to bridge a trust deficit between his party and Muslims by saying that he was ready to apologize for any mistakes committed by the party in the past and urged the community to give his party at least one chance. Read more…

MODI: THE FEAR FACTOR

[The Letter by Vijay Prashad is in response to the article by Ramachandra Guha:, 'The Fear of Fascism - India's Democratic Institutions Are Too Strong to Let Fascists Win'

(http://www.telegraphindia.com/1140322/jsp/opinion/story_18095590.jsp#.UzZyI6iSz3E) Read more…

GUJARAT STORY: FICTION AND FACTS

Atul Sood and Kalaiyarasan A. (Frontline, March 19, 2014)

 

CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) reports and data on economic and social development from various sources make it evident that the much-touted “Gujarat model” of development is non-inclusive, socially divisive and highly ineffective in key areas. Read more…

THE GUJARAT MODEL OF DEVELOPMENT: WHAT WOULD IT DO TO THE INDIAN ECONOMY?

Rohini Hensman

 

The cornerstone of Modi’s and the BJP’s campaign for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections is that the UPA has ruined the Indian economy and the BJP led by Modi will make it boom. These claims have been reinforced by corporate adulation for Modi in his ‘Vibrant Gujarat’ summits [1] and surveys showing that almost 75% of top corporate CEOs want him to be the PM [2]. How valid are these claims? Read more…

MUSLIMS TARGETED AS ELECTIONS LOOM

Irfan Engineer

 

In the context of 16th LS elections so many debates and discussions are going on. The regular harassment of Muslims during the run-up to the elections has started. The following are some of the recent instances. Read more…

BANNED IN BANGALORE

Wendy Doniger (New York Times, March 6, 2014)

 

Chicago – Last month a retired Hindu schoolteacher named Dinanath Batra, who had brought a lawsuit against me and Penguin Books, India, succeeded in getting my book, “The Hindus: An Alternative History,” withdrawn from publication in India. The book, the court agreed, was a violation of  India´s blasphemy law, which makes it a crime to offend the sensibilities of a religious person. Read more…

DEFYING NaMo (Narendra Modi)

Zahid Qureshi and Swapna Pillai

 

The two (Qutubuddin Ansari and  Ashok Mochi) met at the unlikeliest of places – a CPI (M) seminar in Kannur, Kerala – where they joined in a duet of peace and brotherhood, singing and shaking hands.

 

One is the face of Gujarat riots, the other the defining image of its perpetrators. They met on Monday at the unlikeliest of places – a CPI (M) seminar in Kannur in Kerala and did something implausible – joining in a duet of peace and brotherhood. Read more…

XENEPHOBIA, OR NEO TRIBALISM

Sam Noumoff

 

We seem to be global witnesses to what I can only characterize as neo-tribalism. To a large extent, this is the result of social structures that emerged during the Industrial Revolution. Universalist claims were articulated in the name of religion: Christianity or Islam. Economic and political systems were coherently held together by capitalist empires and by a systemic unification resulting from the Bolshevik Revolution. Unfortunately, these structures that expressed universality became progressively fractured. Read more…

INDIA VOTES: CERAS FORUM

A forum on the upcoming parliamentary elections in India

Sunday 30th March (3-5pm)

(South Asian Women’s Community Centre)

1035 Rachel east, 3rd floor

 

All welcome (info: cerasmontreal@gmail.com)

Top