1984 Riots: Charges Framed Against Sajjan Kumar
July 7, 2010
A Delhi court today framed charges of murder and rioting against senior Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and others in connection with a 1984 anti-Sikh riots case in which six persons were killed in Sultanpuri here.
Additional Sessions Judge Sunita Gupta, after finding prima facie evidence against the Congress leader and others, decided to record statements of witnesses from August 23.
The court had on July one had ordered framing of charges in the case.
The framing of charges paves the way for initiation of trial in a criminal case.
Besides murder and rioting, the court also framed charges against Kumar, Brahmanand Gupta, Peru, Khushal Singh and Ved Prakash for the offence of spreading enmity between two communities.
CBI had filed two chargesheets against Kumar and others on January 13 in the riots cases registered in 2005 on the recommendation of Justice G T Nanavati Commission which inquired into the sequence of events leading to the riots.
The present case relates to killing of six persons in Sultanpuri in north-west Delhi in the aftermath of the assassination of the then prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984.
The court has already started recording of statements of the witnesses in an another case involving Kumar and his nephew Balwant Khokkar, Girdhari Lal and Captain Bhagmal.
Meanwhile, the court recorded the statement of a witness, Lal Chand Khemani, who was said to have bought a house owned by the victim, Jagdish Kaur, in a locality here in 1993.
The witness was declared hostile by the prosecution following which he was cross-examined by the CBI.
Jagdish Kaur, a key witness in the Delhi cantonment case, could not appear before the court because of her illness.
She had lost five family members, including her husband, in the riots.
Unpardonable Mistakes@ http://ultracurrents.blogspot.com/2009/11/unpardonable-mistakes.html
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
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The Daily Pioneer
Hindus who are proud to assert their identity and fly the Tricolour high have now found a new platform to have their say, the way they want it, without fear of being shouted down. Tired of being derided by pseudo-secularists in media who see nothing wrong with Muslim communalism and Christian fundamentalism but are swift to pounce upon Hindus for being ‘intolerant’, their cultural ethos crudely denigrated by the Left-liberal intelligentsia as antediluvian, Hindus have begun to harness technology to strike back with deadly effect.
They are bright, they are well-educated, they are not burdened with regional and caste biases, they are amazingly well-informed on national issues and world affairs, they are rooted in Indian culture, and they are politically alert. They hate being told they are wrong when they know they are right. They have a mind of their own and refuse to be led like sheep. Not surprisingly, they hold the Congress, the Left and regional parties in contempt, as they do journalists who cravenly ingratiate themselves with the establishment. For them, India matters — and matters more than anything else. Meet the ‘Internet Hindus’.
In recent days there has been a spate of articles disparaging the ‘Internet Hindus’, variously describing them as “loonies”, “fanatics”, “irrational”, “Hindu Taliban” and, by an enraged news channel anchor, “gutter snipes”. Much of the criticism has come from left-of-centre journalists who believe they have unfettered monopoly over media as their inalienable birth right. Exalted members of Delhi’s commentariat, who are indistinguishable from the city’s la-di-dah socialites, tend to turn up their noses every time they hear the phrase ‘Internet Hindus’ as they would at the suggestion of travelling by public transport. Others are given to contemptuously brushing aside ‘Internet Hindus’ as being irrelevant and describing their views as inconsequential. All this and more has neither dampened the spirit of ‘Internet Hindus’ nor blunted their assertive attitude.
Here are some statistics, culled from an ongoing online survey, which would help create a generic profile of ‘Internet Hindus’. The survey is open to all Hindus who use the Internet; the response has been overwhelming. Of those who have responded, 88.9 per cent have identified themselves as ‘Internet Hindus’, indicating they attach no shame to the term though their critics would want them to feel ashamed. Of the respondents, four per cent are aged 20 years and below; 55 per cent are aged 30 and below; 31 per cent are 40 and below; and, only 10 per cent are aged above 40. In brief, 90 per cent of them are young Indians.
The educational profile of the respondents is awesome: 43 per cent are graduates (most of them from top-notch engineering, science and medical colleges); 46 per cent are post-graduates (a large number of them have MBA degrees from the best B-schools); and, 11 per cent have PhDs. It is understandable that none of them is unemployed. Those without jobs are still studying (17.3 per cent) and can be found in labs and classrooms of the best universities here and abroad. Of the 82.7 per cent who are employed, 3.1 per cent earn up to Rs 2 lakh a year; 18.4 per cent earn up to Rs 6 lakh a year; 34.7 per cent earn up to Rs 12 lakh a year; and, 26.5 per cent earn more than Rs 24 lakh a year. Nearly 60 per cent of them frequently travel abroad on work and holiday. Some 11 per cent have travelled abroad at least once.
Contrary to the impression that is being sought to be created by their critics, ‘Internet Hindus’ are open to ideas, believe in a plural, law-abiding society and swear by the Constitution. They are often appalled by the shenanigans of our politicians, including those of the BJP, and are ruthless in decrying politics of identity and cynical vote-bank policies. They have no gender prejudices and most of them think banning FTV is downright silly in this day and age. The ‘Internet Hindus’ will not countenance denigration of their faith or biased media coverage of events, but 91.9 per cent of them respect and accept other religions. Asked if India is meant only for Hindus, an overwhelming majority of them, responding to the survey, said, ‘Hell, no!’
So why do they infuriate pseudo-secularists in media and make Delhi’s commentariat see red? There are three possible explanations. First, the Net is beyond the control of those who control newspapers and news channels. While the print and audiovisual media have for long excluded contrarian opinion and denied space to those who disagree with absurd notions of ‘secularism’ or question the quality of reportage, the Net has provided space to the ‘other’ voice. Real time blog posts now record the ‘other side’ of the day’s story (“The Prince was shouted down in Bihar, not feted by students!”), Twitter affords instant micro-blogging even as prime time news is being telecast (“That’s not true. I live in Bareilly. This is not how the riots began!”), and YouTube allows unedited amateur videos of events (the Meraj riots, the Islamist violence in Kashmir Valley) to be uploaded, giving the lie to edited and doctored versions shown by news channels.
Second, unlike carefully selected ‘Letters to the Editor’ in newspapers and ‘Feedback’ posted on news channel websites, the reactions of ‘Internet Hindus’, often savage and unflattering, cannot be thrown into the dustbin or deleted with a click of the mouse. English language media journalists, long used to fawning praise from readers and viewers, are horrified that someone can actually call them ‘dumb’ in public space and there’s nothing they can do about it. Third, the established elite, most of them middle-aged, are beginning to feel threatened. Here’s a new breed of Indians who have used merit and not ‘connections’ to make a mark in professional excellence, young men and women who are educated and articulate, and are willing to challenge conventional wisdom as preached by media ‘stars’ who have rarely, if ever, been questioned. The elite who dominate newspapers and news channels are seen by ‘Internet Hindus’ as part of India’s past, not future. As one ‘Internet Hindu’ writes in his blog, “A large number of ex-elite can’t stomach fact that children of bankruptcy are better travelled, better read and dominate the Internet!” Harsh, but true.
We can describe the ‘Internet Hindus’ as the “lunatic fringe”, but that won’t change the fact that their tribe is growing by the day. Soon, those on the fringe will move to the centre and their critics will find themselves precariously perched on the fringe. The Right is gaining ground as is the access and reach of the Net; newspapers and news channels, the Left’s last refuge, no longer command absolute control over information flow. It would be unwise to ‘block’ the voice of ‘Internet Hindus’, as then their clamour to be heard will further increase and there is nothing we can do to silence them. The times they are a-changin’.
Politics of Corruption
Dr. Swamy on Hinduism
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Every terror attack has, of late, unfortunately become a kind of veritable celebration and overkill for most channels. So much so that the other day when some news channels telecast the CCTV footage of the German Bakery blast, a special court for the Maharashtra ATS ordered: "No electronic media should publish, display or telecast any footage or coverage of the incident dated February 13, 2010 or those before the incident that has come on the CCTV of German Bakery and Hotel ‘O’, which would lead to the disclosure of identity of witnesses in the case." The media, especially the electronic, has been indiscriminately featuring terrorists, with their family history, interviews and the so-called Karachi plot to destroy India with unbelievable fan-fare and a persistent obstinacy. Of equal concern is the obsessed regularity with which soft stories on the D-Company are telecast on certain channels. All that the terrorists want is publicity and speculation about their motives, missions and methods. That is the way these underground outlaws operate and try to advance their agenda, if they have one.
It is easy to guess the provocation for the channels to devote so much of their news time to those trivia which most reputed media persons have often denounced. The fact however remains that the institutions headed by these personalities do not even make a pretence of playing by the rule.
This brings us to the subject of the business of selling news space. After liberalisation, the corporate interest has come to dominate politics, policy format and media coverage. As a consequence, matter that once used to come to us as press notes, now get splashed on the front pages as exclusive. It is a propaganda that often comes as a breaking news. The adage that news is that somewhere somebody wants to hide, is no more a dictum for the post-globalisation media. In this context, the advice of the Editors Guild of India to the Election Commissioner of India to take a strong action against both politicians and media persons who violate the disclosure norms of election expenditure and publicity failed to generate the desired public interest. Such issues are often buried somewhere inside between advertisements in a single column and go unnoticed. A travesty of profitability becoming the primary concern of information dissemination. The media honchos lose the propriety and restraint and become willing tools in the hands of business lobbies.
The latest example of the controversy over the Environment Minister’s denial of permission to Bt. brinjal illustrates this point very well. A section of the media has gone overboard criticising the decision and denouncing the minister who was so far hailed as a crusader for reform. Overnight, Jairam Ramesh has become anti-reform, anti-science and standing in the way of genetic research and promotion of biotechnology. Conversely, lo and behold, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar is being projected a man of great vision, modern mind and who is agitated so much about the damage the non-introduction of GM seeds would do to Indian agriculture.
Pawar is a past master in taking up such MNC causes. Remember Enron? It is not a secret how sometime in the mid-1990s Rebecca Mark, a striking 30-something honey blonde Enron Lady took our politicians for a royal ride. Then Pawar had argued for Enron with the same vehemence as he is now pleading the case of Bt. brinjal. And a section of the Indian media lapped up every word the Enron Lady said to make a grand entry into the Indian power sector. The tax-payer had to shell out billions of dollars for the sovereign guarantee for the so-called fast track power project that he promoted in Maharashtra as Chief Minister.
Now, Pawar, according to reports, wrote to the Prime Minister, "the off-the-cuff nature of the Bt. brinjal decision" threatened to "set the clock back" on agricultural growth by disheartening scientists and companies investing in research and resources in GM technology. What moral indignation! The devil perhaps is in the detail. And a section of the media has taken up this fight. We have been open about our resistance to GM food. And it was the result of persistent and informed campaign by the activists and scientists that the Environment Minister was forced to take a second, hard look at the propaganda and pressure by the Bt. brinjal lobby. The problem is how to separate news from propaganda and create an enlightened public opinion.
The forgotten fifty-nine
I am least interested in the cases, the lies, the scandalous twists, the influencing of the case makers, the politics and the horrendous behaviour of those who become members of India’s central law-making body, Parliament, by virtue of an adult franchise.
My eyes were searching for an indicator, some information to know what happened to those families whose bread earners, parents, sole supporters and dearest relatives were suddenly brought dead in body bags.
There were little kids like Gayatri Panchal, who lost her two sisters, mother and father in that inferno. Sudha Rawal, an 82-year-old granny, Neelima, Lakhu Bhai, Bhimji Bhai……
Why they have to die a torturous death? And why the stalwarts, the leaders, the conscious keepers of the land never ever tried to approach them to know, how February 27 changed their world view and lives?
The next carnage, equally condemnable and horrifying, never included the dead of February 27. Both were Indians. I thought dead bodies do not have any religious prejudices. But here we saw, dead too can be made victims of the coloured attitudes.
Is there any answer to the question why Godhra is always, necessarily excluded from Gujarat? Why ‘Gujarat’ is simply and essentially a Muslim tragedy? Though one third of the killed were Hindus?
Why can’t we wail and lament for the Indian, whatever the religion, who dies whether in Godhra or ‘Gujarat’? The mental subjugation, the coercive secularism, the aggressive NGO-funded shrill voices, none of them takes into account the human side of the tragedies. Flags, headbands, the famous picture of the tailor with folded hands, half truths and pure lies in the courtyards of justice, nothing could demystify why Godhra occurred. Rather it has been pushed into the blind well of a secular Talibanistic edit that prohibits even an analytical, objective discussion on the February 27 carnage. Which occurred just eight years ago?
When the perpetrators of 1984 still roam free and the protectors are decorated, an Indian analysis and an Indian inference of Godhra may take decades. But it also throws up the same issue of a self-denial, our leaders in media and politics are delving into. Deny that it ever happened. Deny that the hurt was universal.
Indians are targeted today for various reasons — in Kashmir, Jammu, Bastar, Dantewada, Kohima, Pune, Mumbai. The list is growing by the day. Still the missing identity is Indian.
Recently I was in a discussion in Bangalore and the participants, all noble elitist drum beaters of freedom of expression and objectivity, simply focused on communally oriented themes of persecution, backwardness and atrocities. None of them even once spoke of the Indian pain — they would have been forced to talk of inconvenient truths like Kashmiri Hindus’ exile. And of course Godhra.
The exclusion is as painful as was the massacre. An activist, who works among tribals, showed the gathering pictures of dead bodies of people who he claimed were killed by the security forces . He din't show a single picture of the policemen killed by Naxalites or of those more than 10,000 common citizens brutally murdered by the red marauders.
Aren’t the policemen Indians? And those who were targeted by the Naxalites? Why romanticize the brutal murderers and exclude the agony of others? This dishonesty on part of the "secular, peace-loving" tribe is killing and shows off Stalinist traits.
The burning alive of Graham Staines was horrendous. But so was the killing of the octogenarian Swami Lakshmananand. Why exclude Lakshmananand and refuse to look dispassionately at the other side?
Nothing will be discussed and allowed to be printed till the Shahs of the secular Mecca deem it fit to be approved. Why?
Accept Valentine’s day, as if the day is the new constitutional order of the republic, a new national anthem. Otherwise be prepared to be lampooned and declared an uncivilized moron.
The end of dissent and inclusion is also the end of civility.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010