In a revealing, though not entirely surprising, exposé of the Hindu organization, the Rashtra Swayam Sevak (RSS), Sanjana from Tehelka reports on her experience with Saffron Techies. This is fundamentalism, madrassa style, for the India shining IT sector.
To make themselves more appealing to this "educated", tech-savvy class, the RSS has forgone its strict requirements that all its cadets wear ankle length shorts. I don't know if you've seen any RSS cadets. I have, and they frequently assemble outside temples in Bombay, especially during festivals.
Even though it is so depressing to see what has happened to India, at some level of complete cynicism one can't help but laugh at the stupid khaki shorts these grown up men wear as they walk like toddlers marching towards the glorious Hindu Rashtra. Its a perfect image for Incredible India. Completely brain-washed robots ready to die or kill for their God and Nation.
Well, the Hamas of India, has upgraded its level and now holds meetings where mukhyashikshaks (headmasters) teach Hindu pride to IT professionals. This is going on, in the "all over the world-famous" Bengaluru.
The chameleonic changes happening in India are capable of reviving surrealist non-sequiturs. How can Information Technology (IT) be pitted against bread (Roti)? Such improbable opponents can only emerge from either the laboratories of Victor Frankenstein or economic scientists at the World Trade Organization.
Incessant repetitions have convinced the world, including the dying polar bears and penguins at the poles, that there is an IT revolution going on in India. Believe me, walking the streets of India outside of Bangalore or Gurgaon, it feels like a facetious rumor.
There are a lot of back-office, low-end jobs percolating down to India essentially because of the low wages our accent-trained English speaking young are willing to accept. The real human beings behind the pseudonyms of Mary Janes and Joe Smiths are not unaware of their exploitation. Living in a shortsighted culture that promotes the present, in the moment, instant gratification as the highest value, it is their only option for individual independence. In the pursuit of their individualism they are unwilling to question the greed of their employers. When their Government prostrates to the power of Corporations and legal due process is a farce (remember Bhopal) they are smart enough to shut up and show up for work at the stroke of the midnight hour.
I thought this was hilarious, especially the mustached demon jaw of Bush layered on what is most certainly Arnold's steroid pumped body.
Demonstration against the India-U.S. nuclear deal in Hyderabad, India, Thursday, Sept. 25, 2008. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)
The Times Group is India's largest media conglomerate with a turnover of over USD $700 million. It has eleven publishing centers, fifteen printing centers, fifty five sales offices and over seven thousand employees. It owns five dailies, thirty one magazines, thirty two radio stations and reaches you, your children and your dog in two thousand four hundred and sixty eight cities and towns. Through its subsidiary companies it has interests in major radio, television, film and online businesses.
It is fair to say that the trap of this media composite is inescapable if you are in anyway connected to India. With ownership of such mass media, The Times Group exemplifies how modern corporatism has turned the meaning of language upside down. Mass Media is no longer mass if it is held by a couple of entities. The 'mass' in mass media was meant to be us, the masses. Mass media means people's media, not corporate media injected into people's veins. It means the media is of the people not a media which steals from the people.
Last month I'd written about the core issues around the US-Indo Nuclear deal. Yesterday the House of Representatives in the US Congress cleared the Nuclear Deal with 298 out of 415 members voting in favor. With only ten Republicans against it, most of the opposition (107 votes) came from the Democrats. It might be insightful to study the fund-raisers and contributions by the neo-conservative USINPAC to those who voted in favor. Even though the US Senate still has to clear it, after a 71% vote from Congress chances are that this is a done deal. And we are done for as Manmohan tells Bush:
“Mr. President, People of India deeply love you”.
In my initial rage I hurled abuses at both the huggers, especially the turbaned one for having the audacity to lick ass of a depraved criminal using our name, but soon returned to sanity. There is enough insanity going on. At least the turbaned one is displaying some emotion which is otherwise comparable to that of a paper-weight.
On 23rd September, 1932, Pritilata Waddedar led a bomb attack with 10 men on the Pahartali European Club in Chittagong, Bengal. The raid was successful but she was unable to escape and was trapped by the police. She consumed potassium cyanide as her next best option. The target, the European Pahartali Club, was chosen because it bore this offensive sign at its entrance:
"Dogs and Indians not allowed"
Seventy six years later, I was in Pune for some work this week and I came across this sign outside a posh residential complex:
In the aftermath of multiple blasts in Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Delhi, within the last 2 months, Indian politicians and the mediascape have notched up the din on combating Terrorism with tougher terror laws. Even a catchy name has been assigned to the blasts that gels with the foot-tapping beats and motion graphics of News Networks. Operation BAD (Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Delhi). The nifty acronym optimistically presumes that this might be the end of the operation since Delhi was bombed on the 13th of September.
The responsibility of the blasts was taken by a group that calls itself the Indian Mujahideen. In perverted displays of machismo, the group sent out emails to media networks and SMS messages to cops, minutes before the blasts, presaging the inevitable certainty of what was about to happen and taunting them to stop it if they could. Perhaps this was their idea of fair play and feeling invincible. Twenty one people were killed in Delhi that day.
When a bomb rips through a busy public place it kills without prejudice. It does not discriminate between a man, woman or a child, a believer or a kaffir, rich or poor, black, white, brown or yellow. It is unbiased as the harbinger of death and destruction to all those and that within its periphery. As it shamelessly robs its victims of life, it also rips through the social bonds they carry with their loved ones. Just like the barbarity of those who planted it and the truculence of a Government that vows revenge, a bomb is apathetic to that extended adjunct of its prey. These families and friends are left to deal with their psychological wounds on their own. Then there are those who are left maimed at the borders. A lost limb, a lost sense, shredded skin and a benumbed mind. These scars of trauma they carry for the rest of their lives.
PATNA, India, Aug 18 (Reuters) - A state government in eastern India is encouraging people to eat rats in an effort to battle soaring food prices and save grain stocks.
Authorities in Bihar, one of India's poorest states, are asking rich and poor alike to switch to eating rats in a bid to reduce the dependence on rice. They even plan to offer rats on restaurant menus.
"Eating of rats will serve twin purposes -- it will save grains from being eaten away by rats and will simultaneously increase our grain stock," Vijay Prakash, an official from the state's welfare department, told Reuters.
Officials say almost 50 percent of India's food grains stocks are eaten away by rodents in fields or warehouses.
Jitan Ram Manjhi, Bihar's caste and tribe welfare minister, said rat meat was a healthy alternative to expensive rice or grains, and should be eaten by one and all.
"We are very serious to implement this project since the food crisis is turning serious day by day," Manjhi, who has eaten rats, told Reuters.
In Bihar, rat meat is already eaten by Mushars, a group of lower caste Hindus, as well as poorer sections of society.
Thanks to Raj Patel for the link.
These riots broke out after the burning of Coach S/6, on the Sabarmati Express, in Godhra, on February 27th, 2002. Fifty eight people (23 men, 15 women and 20 children) were killed, burnt to death by a mob, while returning from a pilgrimage from Ayodhya. Using these killings as an excuse, the Hindutva outfits VHP, RSS and Bajrang Dal (members of the Sangh Parivar) unleashed mass riots in which close to two thousand people were killed and over a hundred and fifty thousand people displaced. Most of them were Muslims.
The Sangh Parivar (family of strong associations) is a group of various political parties. The BJP, which controlled both the state and national government, at the time of the riots, is the largest member of this family. The Prime Minster of India, at that time, Atal Bihari Vajpayee started his political career as a member of the RSS. The BJP chief minister of Gujarat, Narinder Modi has close ties to the VHP and the Bajrang Dal.
When the riots went on unchecked for over two months, till May 2002, allegations started surfacing that these riots were pre-planned, organized and aided by local authorities with carte blanche from the Government. It was a serious charge because if these allegations were true, it meant the government of Gujarat was aiding the massacre of its own people divided on lines of religion.
The Church is often accused of funding missions to convert people to Christianity. It is no secret that funds are openly made available for various proselytizing programs. But this isn't new news to anyone familiar with history. The Great Commission has been going on since the Roman Empire thorough the middle ages. After Islam came into the picture in the 7th Century it was but, only a matter of time before the Crusades began. These bloody religious wars changed the face of human society forever. Crusaders, greedy for power, masked themselves as holy warriors spreading the word of their respective Gods. Though the 13th century marked a calendared end to the Crusades, its consequences are felt even in the contemporary world. One could easily make the case that the Crusades are still going on.
Once America was discovered, the Church found a new zeal to pursue its proselytizing agenda. European powers such as Spain, France and Portugal frequently justified their Colonial efforts as spreading the message of Jesus and doing the work of God (God has been a handy term of abuse since its invention). So, alongside the genocide of the American Indians and the profitable slave trade a rapid and often forceful conversion to Christianity was taking place across the Americas and Africa. The indigenous wild pagan tribes had to be civilized.