Saturday 31 October 2015

Intellectuals are the eyes of the society and without them India would be blind

More than a hundred Indian scientists, an equal number of sociologists and social scientists, 50 historians, dozens of award-winning writers, artists and film makers have raised their collective voice against the growing atmosphere of intolerance in the country. Some have returned awards they had received from state bodies while others have signed statements. All are united in their sense of disquiet at what is going on in India today. What is the significance of this ?

These intellectuals are not rich or powerful people. Some among them may well have been surviving on some kind of patronage, as their critics contend. However, to my mind their action is brave and commendable.

It is worth reminding ourselves that under the fascist regimes which came to power in Europe in the 1920s and 1930s, most intellectuals fell in line and either did not oppose the fascists, or became positive collaborators. India should take pride in the fact that its own intellectuals have not behaved in this manner. On the other hand, the response of the government’s spokespersons and apologists has revealed the ideological bankruptcy of the BJP and sangh parivar.

One and a half year into Modi’s rule, the failure of governance is manifest. Far from the vikas, or development, which was promised, the prices of essential foodstuffs like dal and onions have gone through the roof, and unemployment remains intolerably high.

What is the Modi government – and sangh parivar – doing to tackle this problem? They are diverting attention in a totally reactionary direction, spreading communalism and trying to throttle rational thinking. The brutal killing of Govind Pansare and M.M. Kalburgi,  the lynching of Mohammad Akhlaq and others over motivated rumours of cow slaughter, the escalation of beef politics – these are ominous signs of the times to come.

No doubt some of the intellectuals who have returned awards ought to have spoken out earlier but at least they are doing something to keep the spirit of rationalism alive in our country.

The historians issued a joint statement saying that “differences of opinion are sought to be settled by using physical violence. Arguments are met not with counter arguments but with bullets.”

They allege that appointments to various positions are being made of people who have some connection with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.  “What the regime seems to want is a kind of legislated history, a manufactured image of the past, glorifying certain aspects of it and denigrating others, without any regard for chronology, sources or methods of enquiry that are the building blocks of the edifice of history” their statement said.

We have a Prime Minister who made a laughable comment that in ancient India we had genetic engineering and head transplants. We have a Finance Minister who calls the protests a “paper revolt” and a Culture Minister who has asked writers to stop writing. It is significant that hardly any scientist, sociologist, social scientist, historian, writer, artist of film personality has come out in support of the government – other than Anupam Kher, who is close to the BJP. That itself is proof of the depth of feeling amongst the intelligentsia in India.

In my opinion, the revolt of Indian intellectuals is of tremendous importance. The message it sends is that a regime that seeks to create an atmosphere of fear and hate everywhere will only bring about its own downfall. In a country like India with its massive socio-economic problems,  the role of ideas is of great importance. India will have no future if it is going to be governed by reaction and hate, and not reason and scientific thinking. It is intellectuals who are the eyes of society, and without intellectuals a society is blind.

Nitish Kumar will sweep the Bihar Elections

I am not in the satta business, but I do not agree with their analysis. The Nitish-Lalu alliance will not just win by a narrow margin, as predicted by the satta dealers but will sweep the polls in Bihar by at least a two third majority. I have given my reasons in my post ' Modi's Waterloo '.

 And after that Modi's fortune will decline rapidly. There was really nothing in the man in the first place, except his capacity to befool people, particularly the gullible youth who were carried away by his magic slogan called ' vikas '. Allready he has become very unpopular. With dal selling at Rs.200 a kilo and unemployment rising , only the hardcore right wing upper caste Hindus remain his supporters.

Wednesday 28 October 2015

Modi's Waterloo

The Bihar elections are almost certainly going to be Modi’s Waterloo, after which his fortunes are going to rapidly decline. Let me explain.

 In most of India, including Bihar, most people vote on caste and religious lines. The exception is when there is a wave, which cuts through these lines.

The BJP had won the May, 2014 Lok Sabha elections on a Modi wave. This wave was due to three main reasons.

One, Modi’s magic slogan of ‘vikas’ (development), which was perceived as the creation of millions of jobs. The Indian youth, whose voting age was reduced from 21 to 18 in 1988, and who are facing the dreadful future of unemployment (10 million youth enter the job market in India every year, but only half a million jobs are created in the organised sector of the economy), voted en masse for Modi, cutting through caste and religious lines, in the belief that they would all get jobs.

Two, unfortunately the communal virus is still deeply entrenched in society. Most Hindus are communal, and so are most Muslims. Modi was perceived as a ‘Muslim basher’, who had put Muslims in their place in Gujarat in 2002. Many Hindus believe that there has been too much ‘Muslim appeasement’, and so voted for Modi to put Muslims in their place on an all-India basis.

Three, people were simply disgusted with Congress and the UPA under whose rule various scams were unearthed.

Now the Modi wave has largely dissipated, except among hardcore, mainly upper-caste Hindu fundamentalists.

There are no jobs despite the victory of the BJP. Jobs cannot be created by slogans. They are created when the economy is rapidly expanding. And the Indian economy is practically stagnant. So the youth who were expecting jobs have realised they were taken for a ride.

Those who talk of GDP growth ( assuming the figures are real and not cooked up, as they often are ) overlook the more important question : who is getting the fruits of this growth, the Indian masses or only a handful of big businessmen ?

The hope that foreign investments would come into India and create jobs has proved to be illusory. In fact Jim Rogers, a leading American investor has withdrawn his investments in India and exited, saying that one cannot invest in mere hope. Who will invest or set up factories in India in most parts of which there is lack of infrastructure, massive corruption and red tape? (despite Modi’s tall claims of ‘na khaoonga na kanedoonga’). As one foreign businessman said " There is a lot of sizzle, but where is the steak ? ". When even Indian businessmen are not investing in India, why should foreigners do so ?

On the other hand, prices of essential food items like daal and onions have gone through the roof. For instance, dal is selling at about Rs.200 a kilo. This means that the real incomes of most people in India have gone down drastically, because incomes are relative to the price index. Is this vikas ?

No doubt the communal card is still sought to be played – Dadri and the beef ban politics – but it is not having much effect. Food and jobs are more important to people than religion or talk of Digital India and visits to foreign countries.

So voting in the Bihar elections is following the traditional pattern of caste and religion, and we can therefore forecast the results with almost mathematical precision.

As per the 2011 Census of India, Scheduled Castes constitute 16 percent of Bihar’s 104 million population. The census identified 21 of 23 Dalit sub-castes as Mahadalits. The Mahadalit community consists of the following sub-castes: Bantar, Bauri, Bhogta, Bhuiya, Chaupal, Dabgar, Dom (Dhangad), Ghasi, Halalkhor, Hari (Mehtar, Bhangi), Kanjar, Kurariar, Lalbegi, Musahar, Nat, Pan (Swasi), Rajwar, Turi, Dhobi, Pasi, Chamar and Paswan (Dusadh).

The Paswan caste was initially left out of the Mahadalit category. Adivasis (Scheduled Tribes) constitute around 1.3 percent of Bihar’s population. Tribals include Gond, Santhal and Tharu communities in Bihar.

Extremely Backward Class (EBCs) is also sometimes referred to as Most Backward Class (MBCs). There are 130-odd EBC castes in Bihar.

Yadavs and Kurmis, constituting 19 percent, and Muslims – about 17 percent – will solidly vote for the Lalu-Nitish alliance, which makes it 36 percent of the vote. Muslims will vote for the alliance despite Owaisi, who is regarded as a BJP vote splitter by Muslims, and who will therefore not be misled by him, because Muslims are feeling very insecure after issues such as ‘love jihad’, ‘ghar wapasi’, speeches of Adityanath, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti and incidents like those in Muzaffarnagar, Ballabhgarh, and the latest one at Dadri.

A section of the other backward castes, say 8-10 percent, will also vote for the alliance, as Lalu has successfully described it as a fight between the backwards and the forward castes.

Thus the tally of the Nitish-Lalu alliance comes to about 45 percent votes, which represents a sweep (the BJP got a majority in the Lok Sabha with only 31 percent votes).

The NDA’s support is from the upper castes, and a section of the EBCs (or MBCs) and a section of Dalits.

The upper castes in Bihar are altogether only 15 percent. Paswan does not have the support of all the Dalits (who are divided into a large number of sub-castes and Paswan is only one of the dalit sub-castes), in Bihar, unlike Mayawati who has the support of almost all the Dalits in UP. So he may get the NDA about 6-7 percent votes. Manjhi may get 7-8 percent MBC votes, and Kushwaha may get three percent of the votes.

Thus the total tally of NDA votes is at most 33 percent.

These figures show that there is clearly going to be a sweep in favour of the Mahagathbandhan in Bihar. In the Indian system of democracy, seats in elections depend not on percentage share of votes but on being first past the post. With 31 percent votes the BJP got an absolute majority in the Lok Sabha. Getting 45 percent votes means a massive victory for the Nitish-Lalu alliance
And after that, the deluge for the BJP. Massive agitations against price rise, unemployment, etc will begin almost immediately after the Bihar elections, and these will not be quelled by phoney slogans of vikas, and stunts like,Swatchata Abhiyan, Yoga Day, etc You can fool the people for some time, but not for all time.

Tuesday 27 October 2015

The Kerala Guest House beef episode

   There has been an uproar over the alleged serving of beef in the Kerala Guest House in Delhi, and the entry of the Delhi Police and Hindu Sena activists inside the Guest House. I will here only discuss the legal issues about this, and not go into the political aspect.

   Section 11(1) of the Delhi Agricultural Cattle Preservation Act, 1994 ( hereinafter referred to as the DACP Act ) states :

"  For the purpose of enforcing the provisions of this Act the Competent Authority or the Veterinary Officer in writing in this behalf, shall have power to enter and inspect any premises ".

 ' Competent Authority ' has been defined by section 2(b) of the Act to mean the Director, Animal Husbandry, Government of Delhi.

 Veterinary Officer has been defined in section 3 to mean the person appointed by the Competent Authority.

 Thus only the Competent Authorit or the Veterinary Officer could have validly entered the Kerala Guest House to investigate whether an offence under the Act had been committed. The police had no power to do so.

 It may be noted that the DACP Act is a special law, and its provisions will hence prevail over the general law i.e. the Criminal Procedure Code, as it is well settled in law that the special overrides the general. Under the Cr.P.C a policeman can validly enter a premises to investigate a crime under the India Penal Code like murder, dacoity, rape or robbery. But he cannot do so if the crime alleged is under the DACP Act..Here section 11 permits only the two authorities mentioned in section 11 to enter the premises. As regards section 11(5) of the Act which makes section 100 Cr.P.C. applicable, it may be noted that section 100 only lays down the method of investigation, not the person entitled to investigate.

 It follows from the above discussion that the entry of the Delhi police into the Kerala Guest House was totally illegal.

It may also be mentioned that the activists of the Hindu Sena had no legal right to barge into the Guest House and create a ruckus there. Legally one cannot enter into anyone's premises without the permission of the owner or occupant. In fact such an act is criminal tresspass under section 441 I.P.C.

Saturday 24 October 2015

Gandhi and Caste

Gandhi repeate
id in the 1920s that ' Hindus must follow their hereditary professions ' and that ' prohibition of intermarriage between people of different varnas was necessary for a rapid evolution of the soul '. In the 1930s he changed his tune and started saying that he was opposed to caste but supported varna and hereditary professions, as if there is a difference between the two

 This hypocrisy was typical of Gandhi. Whenever he found his stupid feudal ideas unacceptable he tried to obfuscate.

 Thus in 1921 he said in his journal Young India " I am a sanatani Hindu. I believe in varnashram dharma. I believe in protection of the cow "

 He also said " I believe that caste has saved Hinduism from disintegration. One of my correspondents suggests that we should abolish the caste system but adopt the class system of Europe, meaning that the idea of hereditary castes should be rejected. I am inclined to think that the law of heredity is an eternal law, and any attempt to alter it must lead to utter confusion. Hindus believe in transmigration of the soul, and Nature will adjust the balance by degrading a Brahmin if he misbehaves to a lower caste, and upgrading one who lives the life of a Brahmin to a Brahmin in his next life. "

He also wrote " The beauty of the caste system is that it does not base itself upon distinctions of wealth-possessions. Money, as history has proved, is the greatest disruptive force in the world C aste is but an extension of the principle of the family. Both are governed by blood and heredity. Western scientists are busy trying to prove that heredity is an illusion andthat milieu is everything. The.experience of many lands goes against the conclusions of these scientists; but even accepting their doctrine of milieu, it is easy to prove that milieu can be conserved and developed more through caste than through class. As we all know, change comes very slowly in social life, and thus, as a matter of fact, caste has allowed new groupings to suit the changes in lives. But these changes are quiet and easy, as a change in the shape of the clouds. It is difficultto imagine a better harmonious human adjustment.Caste does not connote superiority or inferiority. It simply recognizes different outlooks and corresponding modes of life.But it is no use denying the fact that a sort of hierarchy has been evolved in the caste system, but it cannot be called the cre-ation of the Brahmins. When all castes accept a common goal of life, a hierarchy is inevitable, because all castes cannot realize the ideal in equal degree."

 Again in 1921 Gandhi said : “I believe that if Hindu society has been able to stand, it is because it is founded on the caste system. A community which can create the caste system must be said to possess unique power of organization.To destroy the caste system and adopt the Western European social system means that Hindus must give up the principle of hereditary occupation which is the soul of the caste system.The hereditary principle is an eternal principle.To change it is to create disorder. It will be a chaos if every day a Brahmin is to be changed into a Shudra, and a Shudra is to be changed into a Brahmin. The caste system is a natural order of society.... I am opposed to all those who are out to destroy the caste system.”

 In 1926 Gandhi writes ": In accepting the fourfold division I am simply accepting the laws of Nature, taking for granted what is in-herent in human nature and the law of heredity.... It is not possible in one birth entirely to undo the results of our past doings."

 Gandhi's hypocrisy can again be seen by the following statement in 1927 :

 : " In my conception of the law of varna, no one is superior to any other.... A scavenger [.a rubbish-collector or a latrine- or street-sweeper] has the same status as a Brahmin "

 Is this not ridiculous and farcical ? Do Brahmins regard shudras as their equals ?.It is like the devious doctrine of  'separate but equal ' propounded by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1896. Gandhi does not want abolition of the caste system, he says all castes have the same status, which is nonsense.

 In 1925 Gandhi says: " There is no harm if a person belonging to one varna acquires the knowledge or science and art specialized in by persons belonging to other varnas. But as far as the way of earning his living is concerned, he must follow the occupationof the varna to which he belongs, which means he must follow the hereditary profession of his forefathers.The object of the varna system is to prevent competition and class struggle and class war. I believe in the varna system because it fixes the duties and occupations of persons.Varna means the determination of a man’s occupation before he is born. In the varna system no man has any liberty to choose his occupation."

 This statement is again obfuscation. Why will anyone acquire a skill unless he can use it to earn his bread ?

  In 1931 Gandhi said: " I do not believe in caste in the modern sense. It is an excrescence and a handicap on progress. Nor do I believe in inequalities between human beings. We are all absolutely equal. But equality is of souls and not bodies. We have to realize equality in the midst of this apparent inequality. Assumption of superiority by any person over any other is a sin against God and man. Thus caste, in so far as it connotes distinctions in status, is an evil

.I do however believe in varna which is based on hereditary occupations. Varnas are four to mark four universal occupations – imparting knowledge, defending the defenceless, carrying on agriculture and commerce, and performing service through physical labor. These occupations are common to all mankind, but Hinduism, having recognized them as the law of our being, has made use of it in regulating social relations and conduct. Gravitation affects us all whether one knows its exist or not "

 The above statement really takes the cake. On the one hand Gandhi says he does not believe in caste, on the other hand he says that he believes in hereditary occupations, and says it is like the law of gravity.  But hereditary occupations is the basis of caste ( see my blog on caste system on ). Does this contradictory statement require any comment, except to say that this man can wriggle around and say that 2+2=4 and 2+2=5 in the same breath ?

In 1932 Gandhi said:  "My own opinion is that the varna system has just now broken down. There is no true Brahmin or true Kshatriya or Vaishya. We are all Shudras, i.e. one varna. If this position is accepted, then the thing becomes easy. If this does not satisfy our vanity, then we are all Brahmins. Removal of Untouchability does mean root-and-branch destruction of the idea of superiority and inferiority "

  Does the above statement make any sense ? At least I cannot make any head or tail out of it.

 In 1933 Dr. Ambedkar  said "There will be outcastes as long as there are castes, and nothing can emancipate the outcaste except the destruction of the caste system.". This was a logical argument of Dr. Ambedkar.

 But see how Gandhi replies. He said "  Dr. Ambedkar is bitter. He has every reason to feel so. Yet I do not believe the caste system, even as distinguished from varnashrama [the scheme of duties traditionally linked to the caste system], to be an “odious and vicious dogma. It has its limitations and defects, but there is nothing sinful about it, as there is about Untouchability; and if Untouchability is a by-product of the system, it is only in the same sense that an ugly growth is of a body, or weeds of a crop ".

   Thus Gandhi is not against the caste system but only against Untouchability.

Gandhi admitted that his ideal of a varna system with everyone enjoying equal economic and social status probably had no historical warrant:
: But when asked whether in ancient India there was much difference in economic status and social privileges between the four varnas Gandhi replied " That may be historically true. But misapplication or an imperfect understanding of the law must not lead to the ignoring of the law itself. By constant striving we have to enrich it  ".
So Gandhi is not against the caste system but only its  'misapplication.' ( whatever that may mean )..

 The contrast between Gandhi’s and Ambedkar’s views was heightened by their respective relations to the Jat-Pat-Todak Mandal, a new organization which was dedicated to promoting a casteless Hinduism. Gandhi told its secretary:in1932:  "If eradication of castes means the abolition of varna I do not approve of it. But I am with you if your aim is to end the innumerable caste distinctions ".

Dr Ambedkar corrrectly analysed  the cause of Gandhi's  contradictory statements and obfuscation regarding caste as " the double role which the Mahatma wants to play – of a Mahatma and a politician. As a Mahatma he may be trying to spiritualize politics. Whether he has succeeded in it or not, politics have certainly commercialized him. A politician must know that society cannot bear the whole truth. If he is speaking the whole truth, it is bad for his politics. The reason why the Mahatma is always supporting caste and varna is because he is afraid that if he opposes them he will lose his place in politics.... Whatever may be the source of this confusion, the Mahatma must be told that he is deceiving himself and also deceiving the people by preaching caste under the name of varna ".

  This is the man who has been thrust down the throats of Indians as the ' Father of the Nation '

Tuesday 20 October 2015

Only a nigger

In the great American novel ' Huckleberry Finn ' by Mark Twain, about whom Ernest Hemingway ( a favourite author of mine ) said that all American literature starts from it, Aunt Sally asks about a steamboat accident " Was anyone hurt ?"

To which Huck replies " No'm. Only a nigger killed ".

Dalits were attacked in Faridabad recently, and 2 dalit children burnt alive, but most Indians would similarly say ( or at least say in their minds, if not openly ) about th...e incident " Only some dalits were killed ".

Does this not show how backward and inhuman we are ? Does this not vindicate my statement that 90% Indians are idiots, full of casteism, communalism and superstitions ?

It was declared as far back as in 1776 in the American Declaration of Independence ' We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal..."

. But 239 years thereafter most of us stiil believe that a section of our own people, the dalits, are inferior or not even human. Is this not shameful ?

This short satirical essay was published in the Buffalo Express while Mark Twain was co-owner and editor of that newspaper. It appeared unsigned but has been attributed to Mark Twain in Philip S. Foner's Mark Twain: Social Critic (New York: International Publishers, 1958), and is included in Mark Tw…

One day Navratri fast by Muslims in California

This is an email I received a short while back from Santosh Addagulla, an NRI settled in Califormia in USA. He is originally from Telengana, and it was he who organized a one day roza by non Muslims on 4th July during Ramzan, and iftaar in the evening at the residence of Mr. Syed Ali, a billionaire living in Saratoga in the Bay Area of California, and his gracious wife Shaista Ali who hosted the dinner on that day.

There has been tremendous response from non Hindus to my appeal to keep one day Navratri fast, just as there was tremendous response by non Muslims who kept one day roza during Ramzan.
The whole aim is to maintain communal harmony and solidarity with people of other religions, which is especially necessary today since certain elements are trying to polarize society and whip up communal hatred.

To institutionalize this practice, I hereby declare that in future non Muslims everywhere will keep roza on the first day of every Ramzan, and non Hindus everywhere will keep fast on the first day of every Navratri

Santosh Addagulla <>
Markandey Katju
Today at 11:49 AM

Hello Katju saab,

How are you doing ? It's been a while we talked and we are missing you here badly in the Bay Area. I will call you sometime soon.

With your inspiration and advice to keep the country united and respect each other's religion, few of our friends from Muslim community are fasting this Navarathi and we are all celebrating the festival at my home in Fremont, California. I just wanted to share the same with you as it is your idea and saying that we are following.
Here is the event for your perusal.
Thank you,

Ravana is worshipped among Gonds

A fb message
Chetan Sayam
Oct 19th, 11:43pm

I belong to gond tribe. We (gonds) worship king Ravana, in fact we also have his temples. He was a great king, he was portrayed wrongly as they wanted to show Ram as a hero or something. And on the day of dassehera, people burn our king on every square of locality. We feel helpless as no one bothers about our sentiment.

They say Ravana was a cruel man, but then why he didn't touch Sita? Why did he wait for her consent? There are enormous examples. I can tell U that Ravana was a good person.

Sir, I respect you a lot as I m also a budding lawyer. I'll eagerly wait for your reply.

Thank you

Markandey Katju
Sent by Facebook Mentions

Oct 20th, 7:17am
Can I post this on fb with your name ?

Chetan Sayam
Oct 20th, 9:17am

Monday 19 October 2015

To the Patriotic Indian Intellectuals

Intellectuals are the eyeds of society, and without intellectuals society is blind. So the leadership of every great historical movement has to be given by intellectuals.

 Unfortunately most of the so called 'intellectuals' in India are themselves blind. So how can they give leadership to the Indian masses ?. My job therefore is to educate these intellectuals and give them eyes. Once that is done my job will be over, because then these intellectuals will themselves be guiding society properly

 India is inevitably heading for a crisis, some kind of French Revolution, as I have repeatedly said. While on the one hand the superstructure, including all our state institutions, has collapsed and become an empty shell, the socio-economic crisis continues to build up---massive poverty, unemployment, price rise, malnourishment, lack of healthcare and good education,etc Everything is heading for a crisis.

 But the Indian Revolution will not come immediately, it will be preceded by a long period of chaos, which is in fact going on, and which can be called "The Great Turbulence" lasting for 10-20 years.

 One would recall that the great French Revolution of 1789 was preceded by decades of intellectual ferment, a period when great thinkers like Voltaire, Rousseau, and the French Encyclopediasts like Diderot, Helvetius, Holbach, etc attacked the existing feudal institutiions, practices and ideas.

 So before the Indian Revolution takes place, and that may take 10-20 years from now, the patriotic Indian intellectuals must lay the groundwork, as the French intellectuals did before 1789.

 What must you do ? You must basically attack feudal practices and ideas in India, in particular the following :
1. The caste system ( see my blog on the Caste System on ).
2. The belief that cow or Ganga are holy
3. Belief in babas
4. Sharia law, in particular oral talaq
5. Wearing of burqa or hijab
6. False heroes like Gandhi, Subhas Chandra Bose, etc
7. Writers like Tagore, the Hindi chayavadi poets, Agyeya, etc who belong to the school of art for arts sake. Instead you must support art for social purpose like Sarat Chandra, Kazi Nazrul islam, Faiz, Manto, Subramania Bharathi, Premchand, etc

You must also patiently explain to the people, while upholding freedom of religion, that all religions are false and superstitions, and the truth lies in science, which alone can solve our country's massive problems.

 Our national aim must be to build a highly industrialized and prosperous country and a just modern social order in which everyone gets a decent life, and in which the standard of living of the Indian masses is constantly rising.

 There must not be any compromise on these principles

Sunday 18 October 2015

An assessment of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan ( 1817-1898 )

I had in an earlier post said that creation of Aligarh Muslim University and Benares Hindu University was part of the British policy of divide and rule. A University is by it very nature something universal. How can it be Hindu or Muslim ?

I consequently regard both Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and Pt. Madan Mohan Malviya, the creators of these Universities, as objectively British agents.

Here I may deal with Sir Syed.

 Sir Syed worked for the British East India Company, and in the Great Rebellion of 1857 he was loyal to the British, calling the rebellion ' haramzadgi '.

Hali, his biographer, has written that when the British Commissioner of Benares expressed his surprise when Sir Syed, who used to earlier talk of the common welfare of all Indians suddenly changed his stand and started talking only about Muslims. Sir Syed replied " I am convinced that the two communities ( Hindu and Muslim ) will never put their hearts in any venture together. In coming times an ever increasing hatred and animosity appears in the horizon. "

 Thus, Sir Syed is the father of the two nation theory, that Hindus and Muslims are two separate nations, a theory which was later developed by Allama Iqbal ( see his presidential Address to the Muslim league in its Allahabad Session of 1930 ) and Jinnah.

 In 1869 Sir Syed went to England where he was awarded the Order of the Star of India by the British Government., and he was knighted in1888. Would they have given him these awards if he had not been objectively a British agent, loyally serving the British policy of divide and rule and supporting British rule like a faithful lackey ?.

 Many people say that Sir Syed only wanted Muslims to become educated. If that alone had been his endeavour there would be no objection. But if one reads his speech given in Meerut in 1888 ( link given below ) it is evident that it was not just that.

  He repeatedly calls Muslims ' my nation' ( paras 1,3,7 etc of the speech ), 'our Mahomedan nation( para 2 ), .'our nation ' ( para 4 ), ' whole Mahomedan nation ', ( para 4 ), ' my own nation'( para 5 ), etc

 Is this not subscribing to the two nation theory which led to Partition in 1947 with all its horrors ( see the stories on Partition by the great writer Saadat Hasan Manto, whom I regard as one of the greatest short story writers of all times ) ?

 In para 7 of the speech he says :

"  In whose hands shall the administration and the Empire of India rest? Now, suppose that all English, and the whole English army, were to leave India, taking with them all their cannon and their splendid weapons and everything, then who would be rulers of India? Is it possible that under these circumstances two nations the Mahomedans and the Hindus could sit on the same throne and remain equal in power? Most certainly not. It is necessary that one of them should conquer the other and thrust it down. To hope that both could remain equal is to desire the impossible "
In para 8 he says "

" It is, therefore, necessary that for the peace of India and for the progress of everything in India, the English Government should remain for many years in fact forever "
 So this British lackey shamelessly wanted British rule to continue in India forever

In para 17 he says :

" Oh! my brother Musalmans! I again remind you that you have ruled nations, and have for centuries held different countries in your grasp. For seven hundred years in India you have had Imperial sway. You know what it is to rule. Be not unjust to that nation which is ruling over you, and think also on this: how upright is her rule. Of such benevolence as the English Government shows to the foreign nations under her, there is no example in the history of the world. See what freedom she has given in her laws, and how careful she is to protect the rights of her subjects "

 So he shamelessly supports British rule which reduced India, which was a prosperous country under the Mughals, to an impoverished nation under the British..
In paras 19 he says "

 We ought to unite with that nation with whom we can unite. No Mahomedan can say that the English are not "People of the Book." No Mahomedan can deny this: that God has said that no people of other religions can be friends of Mahomedans except the Christians. He who had read the Koran and believes it, he can know that our nation cannot expect friendship and affection from any other people.At this time our nation is in a bad state as regards education and wealth, but God has given us the light of religion, and the Koran is present for our guidance, which has ordained them and us to be friends."

 So according to this unashamed British lackey, Muslims cannot be friends with Hindus, though they are living in the same country, but must dishonourably join hands with the British rulers who were oppressing and exploiting us. 

 In para 20 of the speech he goes on to say :

      " Now God has made them rulers over us. Therefore we should cultivate friendship with them, and should adopt that method by which their rule may remain permanent and firm in India, and may not pass into the hands of the Bengalis. This is our true friendship with our Christian rulers, and we should not join those people who wish to see us thrown into a ditch. If we join the political movement of the Bengalis our nation will reap loss, for we do not want to become subjects of the Hindus, instead of the subjects of the "People of the Book." And as far as we can we should remain faithful to the English Government. By this my meaning is not that I am inclined towards their religion. Perhaps no one has written such severe books as I have against their religion, of which I am an enemy. But whatever their religion, God has called men of that religion our friends. We ought not on account of their religion, but because of the order of God to be friendly and faithful to them. If our Hindu brothers of these Provinces, and the Bengalis of Bengal, and the Brahmans of Bombay, and the Hindu Madrasis of Madras, wish to separate themselves from us, let them go, and trouble yourself about it not one whit. We can mix with the English in a social way. We can eat with them, they can eat with us. Whatever hope we have of progress is from them. The Bengalis can in no way assist our progress. And when the Koran itself directs us to be friends with them, then there is no reason why we should not be their friends. But it is necessary for us to act as God has said. Besides this, God has made them rulers over us. Our Prophet has said that if God place over you a black negro slave as ruler, you must obey him. ".

 So the Indian Muslims must be friendly with the British looters and gangsters and support their rule over India because that was the order of God !

In para 22 he sums up by saying :

"  God had made them ( the British ) your rulers. This is the will of God. We should be content with the will of God. And in obedience to the will of God, you should remain friendly and faithful to them. Do not do this: bring false accusations against them and give birth to enmity. This is neither wisdom nor in accordance with our holy religion "

 Is this not like a fawning speech by a British slave, a disgraceful chamcha of the British government ? And is it not furthering the two nation theory, that Hindus and Muslims are two separate nations, and that the Indian Muslims should ally themselves with the British, rather than with their fellow countrymen, the Hindus, ostensibly because the British, being Christians, are people of the 'book' while Hindus are not? 

 Now let us consider another speech given by Sir Syed in Lucknow in 1887 ( link given below ).

 In para 5 of the speech he says :

"   It is a first principle of the Empire that it is the supreme duty of everyone, whether Hindustani or Englishman, in whose power it rests, to do what he can to strengthen the Government of Her Majesty the Queen. "

 So instead of fighting jointly with Hindus against British rule, which reduced India from being a prosperous nation under Mughal rule before the British came to India to an impoverished nation by the time British rule ended ( India held over 30% of the world's trade before the British came to India which was reduced to 2-3% by the time they left ), Sir Syed advocated support and strengthening of British rule.

 No wonder the British gave him knighthood and other awards.

I know this post will make me unwelcome in AMU and unpopular with many Muslims ( just as my statement against beef ban made me unpopular with many Hindus ) but that does not matter. The interest of the nation and the truth overrides all other considerations.

I am not a popularity or publicity seeker ( whatever some people may think ), and often what I say makes me very unpopular ( e.g. my statements on Gandhi, Subhas Chandra Bose, Tagore, beef ban, burqa, oral talaq, etc ). But I give reasons for what I say, and those who wish to refute me are welcome to give their counter reasons..

Thursday 15 October 2015

Have they written for the people ?

I am no supporter of Modi or the BJP, and have often criticized them, just as I have criticized Congress and other political parties, calling most of them rogues and rascals, who have looted the country and polarized Indian society on caste and religious lines.

. But what kind of writers are these who are returning their awards and are crying hoarse for being allegedly suffocated by right wing elements ? Have they written about the terrible conditions of the Indian people, like Sarat Chandra, Premchand, Faiz, Manto, Kazi Nazrul Islam,  Dickens, Gorki, John Steinbeck, Victor Hugo, etc. Have they inspired people by their writings to struggle for a better life ? Have they attacked evil and backward social customs like the inhuman  caste system, as Kabir did ?

No, most of them enjoyed comfortable lives and wrote for money. I regard most of them no better than ' presstitutes '

Writers returning awards

 While I can sympathize with writers in India returning awards for feeling suffocated in the prevailing intellectual atmosphere generated by right wing groups, I want to raise a more fundamental issue.
 Where is the great literature in India today ? Where are the Sarat Chandra, Premchand, Subramania Bharati, Faiz and Manto of today ? Where are the Dickens, Bernard Shaw,  Victor Hugo, Maxim Gorki, Balzac, Maupassant, Walt Whitman, Mark Twain, John Steinbeck, Upton Sinclair, Erich Maria Remarque, and Pablo Neruda of today ?

 Our writers write mainly to make money, and have no genuine social commitment. They have become largely commercialized, like the rest of society.

 As I have explained in my article ' The Role of Art and Literature ' ( see online and on my blog ), there are broadly two theories of art and literature. The first is called art for art's sake, and the second is called art for social purpose.

Those who belong to the first school believe that the purpose of art and literature is only to create a work of beauty for pleasure, or for entertainment. If art is created for a social purpose, it ceases to be art and becomes propaganda. Followers of this school are Keats in English literature, Alexander Dumas in French, Edgar Allan Poe in American, Agyeya and the chayavadi poets in Hindi, and Tagore in Bengali literature.

 On the other hand those who belong to the school of art for social purpose believe that art should help society, by attacking oppressive institutions, customs and ideas, and by inspiring people to fight against them and secure a better life.

 In a poor country like India only the second school is acceptable. Art and literature in India should attack inhuman and outdated feudal and backward practises like the caste system, and inspire people to fight for better lives as Sarat Chandra, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Subramania Bharati, Faiz etc did.

 But are our writers doing so ? I am afraid the answer has to be in the negative All they care for is making money.

 What difference then does it make whether our writers retain their awards or return them ?

Wednesday 14 October 2015

Bengalis and Bose

I hold Bengalis in high respect. They are a highly intelligent, highly cultured people, with great contributions in literature, science, philosophy,social reforms, etc

Unfortunately, many of them have some blind spots. It is diifficult to talk rationally with most Bengalis about some personalities whom they have converted into icons or holy cows, e.g. Tagore or Subhas Chandra Bose. Even the slightest criticism of these persons invokes a torrent or barrage of abuse, invectives and vituperations.

I remember when I was a Judge of Allahabad High Court I was sitting with some other Judges, one of whom was a Bengali, at the house of one of my colleagues. I mentioned my view that Subhas Chandra Bose was a Japanese agent. This so infuriated the Bengali Judge that he started shouting and raving almost like a madman, and so I quickly apologized so as not to break up the party.

But why should Bengalis go crazy if someone rationally criticizes Tagore and Bose ? Are they the private property of Bengalis.?
I have given my reasons for criticizing Bose, whom I regard as objectively a Japanese agent, and Tagore, whom I regard as objectively a British stooge. I do not claim that my reasoning is necessarily correct, but then if one disagrees with it he should politely and coolly point out the flaws in my reasoning, and give his counter reasoning. Mere abuse is neither here nor there. In fact abuse is the refuge of a person when reasoning fails.

I have already mentioned my view about Tagore on my blog in which I have said that Tagore was objectively a British stooge, who had been built up by the British ( through their agent Yeats ) so as to divert literature from the revolutionary direction Sharad Chandra Chattopadhyaya was taking it ( see his Pather Dabi ) towards harmless and nonsensical spiritualism and mysticism ( see Gitanjali, Agni Beena Bajao Tumi, etc ) so as not to harm British interests.

I had also called Bose objectively a Japanese agent, in one of my blogs.

  Mamata Banerjee threw open the state government's files on ' Netaji '.,and I saw on T.V. that tomorrow evening Bose's relatives are meeting the Prime Minister.

Mamata Banerji's move was just a diversionary populist measure to divert attention from the real problems of Bengalis ( and other Indians ) of poverty, unemployment, healthcare, price rise, malnourishment, etc.and gain popularity for the coming Bengal elections.
But, it is high time for Bengalis ( and other Indians ) to make a rational assessment of this ' national icon ' ( as Mamata described him ).

1. To assess Bose we have to see the historical background. That background was this :
Japan had rapidly industrialized in the late 19th and early 20th century, and then, like other imperialist powers wanted colonies, i.e. markets and raw materials.
2. The problem for Japan was that most of East and South Asia was at that time dominated by European powers. So to oust them japan embarked on an aggressive programme of militant expansionism and conquest of east and south Asia, calling it euphemistically ' The Greater Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere'.
3. By this militant expansionism Japan conquered Korea, Manchuria, parts of north and east China, and their armies went as far south as Burma and Singapore
4. Did the Japanese come so far from Japan for a picnic, or to conquer colonies ?
5. Having reached Burma the Japanese were obviously eyeing the huge Indian market and enormous raw materials, which were then under British control. So they fought against the British.
6. If the Japanese had defeated the British would they have given freedom to India, or made it a Japanese colony and looted it ?.Anyone having slightest commonsense can give the correct answer to this question.

In my opinion Bose was a highly ambitious person, and he became a Japanese agent because neither Gandhi nor Hitler had given him any ' bhaav ', so he thought that the only alternative left was to ally with Japan.
The Japanese fascists used Bose in their fight against the British, but the moment his utility was over they would probably have bumped him off, or made him a puppet ruler like the last Chinese Emperor Pu Yi, who was made head of 'Manchukuo'.

Does anybody think that the Japanese fascist imperialists would have given freedom to India if they had defeated the British ? No, they would have made India their colony ( as they made Korea, Manchuria and other parts of China, Vietnam,etc ) and looted us. If we resisted, the Japanese would assuredly have massacred our people, as they did to the people of Shanghai, Nanking, etc ( see on Youtube visual accounts of these massacres ).

If Bose was a great freedom fighter, why did he give up the fight against the British the moment the Japanese surrendered ? He should have carried on a guerilla war against the British, the way the Chinese Eighth Route Army fought against the Japanese. In guerilla war you fight with the weapons of the enemy, by snatching them from him. The fact that he did not do so shows that there was nothing in the man. First he tried to become an agent of the Nazis, but they rebuffed him. Then he became an agent of the Japanese, who accepted him as their loyal lackey.

Some people support Bose's alliance with the Japanese by saying that an enemy's enemy is one's friend. In the real, practical, world, this maxim cannot be of universal application. One can understand alliance with Japan if there was a possibility that such an alliance could have given us real freedom. But there was no such possibilty. Even if the Japanese, with I.N.A. support had defeated the British, they would never have given us freedom, but converted India into their colony. The very nature of the then fascism prevailing in Japan makes this evident. Only a fool will talk like Anuj Dhar that Japan would have treated India differently from the other countries it had conquered because it was the land of Buddha. As if fascists care for Buddha

In 1941 Bose went to Germany, and not only hobnobbed with Hitler but even with Himmler, two of the most evil men in history, ( their photographs can be seen on the internet ) responsible for terrible atrocities on the Jews, which had started in 1933 when Hitler came to power, and which the whole world knew of. So Bose could not have been ignorant of Kristalnacht of 1938 etc, even if he did not know of gas chambers..
 Bose wanted to organize the Indian soldiers captured by the Germans, to fight along with the Nazis. But when Hitler showed no interest, Bose went to Japan and raised his ragtag 'Azad Hind Fauj ' to fight with Japanese support against the British army.
The INA was totally dependant on the Japanese for weapons, supplies, etc. So Bose never objected to Japanese atrocities on the local people of Andaman Islands. And the moment Japan surrendered the ragtag 'Azad Hind Fauj ' disappeared like empty gas.

My assessment of Bose is that while in his youth he was patriotic, having resigned from the I.C.S. to serve the nation, he was a confused person, who later became over ambitious, and to satisfy his ambition and ego was prepared even to ally with the devil. Like a Faust who sold his soul to a Mephistopheles, Bose sold his soul to fascists.In fact he sold itl twice, first to the Nazis, and then to the Japanese fascists
It is high time Bengalis ( and others ) realize this

Tuesday 13 October 2015

My Indian brothers and sisters,

 Let me tell, you : I love you. And because i love you I want to see you having decent lives and enjoying a high standard of living.

 But that is only possible when scientific and rational thinking spreads to every nook and corner of our country. And that is what I am doing.

 Some of you may think my words harsh, but that is for your good. When I call you 'jaahils', and say that your heads are full of 'gobar' and 'bhoosa', that is not to denigrate you or demoralize you, but to uplift you from your jaahiliyat..

 I have to speak the truth, however unpleasant, to show how backward most of you are. My intention is not to run you down, but to remove the backwardness, the jaahiliyat,  from your heads, and make you part of enlightened India.

 Please consider what I have to endure in this process. When I criticize Hindus, they abuse me, and when I criticize Muslims, they do the same. But Muslims should remember that whenever any atrocity is committed against Muslims the voice of Markandey Katju is perhaps the first which is raised in protest.

 What do I get in return for this ? Nothing. Or rather abuses. I am not in politics, nor will ever be. So what possible motive could I have ? I am in my 70th year, and have only a few years life left.

 My remaining few years will be dedicated to serving my countrymen. That is my real reward.  I want nothing in return

Outcome of Bihar elections

A well known senior journalist of India who is currently in Bihar covering the elections telephoned me yesterday and said that from his own assessment my prediction about the Bihar elections appears to be correct, and the Lalu-Nitish alliance is likely to sweep the polls.
 I am reproducing my earlier post

Bihar Elections: Sweep in favour of the Mahagathbandhan

I predict not just a bare victory but a sweep in favour of the Lalu-Nitish alliance in the coming Bihar elections. This is based on simple mathematics.

As I had said in an earlier post, voting in most states in India, including Bihar, is on the basis of caste and religion. The exception to this rule is when there is a wave.

In the May 2014 elections there was a Modi wave, as people, particularly the youth, were captivated by the magic slogan of 'vikas', which promised millions of jobs to our huge population of unemployed youth, whose voting age had been reduced from 21 to 18 by a Constitutional amendment of 1988.

This slogan, however has proved hollow, as jobs have not been created, and the youth have been left high and dry. While there has been a lot of big talk, hardly anything has been done by Modi except stunts like 'Swatchata Abhiyan' ( I visited Varanasi yesterday and found it as dirty as ever, and I spoke to many citizens there who said the same ), Yoga Day, etc and meaningless foreign trips which must have cost a huge amount of money and whose end result is ' khoda pahaad, nikli chuhiya'.

So the Modi wave has totally dissipated, and now voting in Bihar will be on the traditional lines of caste and religion.

Here are the caste demographics of Bihar which I got from the net :
Population (%)
OBC/EBC 51% ( Yadavs -14%, Kurmis- 4%,[24][25]( EBCs - 30%[26][27][28][29][30] -includes
kushwahas - 6% Koeris -8%,[31] Teli-3.2%))
Mahadalits* + Dalits(SCs) 16%[32][33]
Muslims 16.9%[10]
Forward caste 15% [34](Bhumihar -3%, Brahmin-5%,[35] Rajputs- 6%, Kayasth- 1%)
Adivasis(STs) 1.3% [36][37]
Others 0.4% (include Christians,Sikhs,Jains)

As per, 2011 Census of India , Scheduled Castes constitute 16% of Bihar's 104 million population.[38] The census identified 21 of 23 Dalit sub-castes as Mahadalits.[39] Mahadalit community consists of the following sub castes - Bantar, Bauri, Bhogta, Bhuiya, Chaupal, Dabgar, Dom (Dhangad), Ghasi, Halalkhor, Hari (Mehtar, Bhangi), Kanjar, Kurariar, Lalbegi, Musahar, Nat, Pan (Swasi), Rajwar, Turi, Dhobi, Pasi, Chamar and Paswan (Dusadh).[40] Paswan caste was initially left out of the Mahadalit category.[41][42] Adivasis (Scheduled Tribes) constitute around 1.3% of Bihar population.[43][44] Tribals include Gond, Santhal and Tharu communities in Bihar.[45][46]
Extremely Backward Class (EBCs) are also sometimes referred to as Most Backward Class(MBCs). There are 130-odd EBC castes in Bihar.

Yadavs and Kurmis constituting 19% and Muslims about 17% will solidly vote for the Lalu-Nitish alliance, which makes it 36%. Muslims will vote for it ( despite Owaisi, who is regarded as a BJP vote splitter by Muslims, and who will therefore not be misled by him ) because Muslims are feeling very insecure after love jihad, ghar wapasi, speeches of Adityanath, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti ( calling them haramzadas) and incidents like in Muzaffarnagar, Ballabhgarh, and the latest one at Dadri.. So they will solidly vote for the alliance.

A section of the other backward castes, say 8-10%, will also vote for the alliance, as Lalu has successfully described it as a fight between the backwards and the forward castes.

Thus the tally of the Nitish-Lalu aalliance comes to about 45% votes, which represents a sweep ( BJP got a majority in the Lok Sabha with only 31% votes )

As regards, the NDA, its support is from the upper castes, and a section of EBCs( also called MBCs ) and a section of dalits, because of Paswan, Manjhi and Upendra Kushwaha.

The upper castes in Bihar, as can be seen from the above chart, are altogether only 15%. Paswan does not have the support of all the dalits ( who are divided into a large number of sub castes) in Bihar, unlike Mayawati who has the support of almost all the dalits in U.P. So he may get the NDA about 6-7% votes. Manjhi may get 7-8% MBC votes, and Kushwaha may get 4%votes.

Thus the total tally of NDA votes is 15+7+8+4=32%
There is clearly going to be a sweep in favour of the Mahagathbandhan in Bihar
Posted by Justice M

Monday 12 October 2015

Navratri fast tomorrow, 13th October

There is overwhelming response by Muslims to my appeal to keep one day Navratri fast tomorrow ( 13th October ), just as there was overwhelming response from Hindus when I appealed to them to keep one day roza during Ramzan on 4th July this year.

It is just not possible for me to post all the fb messages I have received from Muslims who have said they will fast tomorrow. One of such fb messages is given below :

Muhammad Arif...

.प्रणाम सर जी।
आपके आदेशानुसार मैंने कल के नवरात्रि व्रत रखने का निर्णय लिया है। आशा करता हूँ आज आप एक बार पुनः लोगों से सामप्रदायिक सद्भावना एवं आपसी भाईचारे के संदेश हेतु कल व्रत रखने के लिए कहेंगे।

This shows that my message of promoting communal amity is having effect, and most people want to live in harmony, despite the nefarious designs and efforts of those vested interests who want to polarize and divide society on communal lines

Sunday 11 October 2015

The Lok Nayak

Today is the birth anniversary of Jai Prakash Narayan, the so called 'Lok Nayak'.

 I know I will be castigated for saying this, but I have a very poor opinion of Jai Prakash Narayan's intellect. In fact the man had no scientific ideas at all for solving the country's massive problems. I regard him intellectually as stupid as Gandhi and Anna Hazare..

 In 1954 J.P. became a disciple of another idiot, Vinoba Bhave who was being used by the Establishment to create the illusion among landless peasants that they will  be given land voluntarily by the big land holders, and so they should not start an armed struggle to get it.

No doubt J.P. headed the struggle against the despotic and power crazy Indira Gandhi, but what happened after the Janta Party came to power ? Was poverty, unemployment, malnourishment, etc abolished ? What happened to the much touted ' Total Revolution ' ? It disappeared into thin air, leaving behind his disciples Lalu Yadav, Nitish Kumar, Sushil Kumar Modi, Ram Bilas Paswan, etc. who have ruined Bihar as his legacy

Saturday 10 October 2015

Appeal to non-Hindus for one day Navratri fast

There was a time in India when Hindus used to participate in Eid and Muharram, while Muslims used to participate in Holi and Diwali.

 Later, particularly after the Great Mutiny of 1857 the British and their agents sowed the seed of communalism into our society.  This poison, injected year after year and decade after decade resulted in Partition in 1947 ( see my article 'The Truth about Pakistan' available online and on my blog,  and B.N.Pandey's speech ' History in the Sevice of Imperialism ' available online ). Many elements in India are still spreading communal hatred to divide and polarize the people and thus secure their vote bank.

 My effort has been to expose such communal ( and therefore anti-Indian ) rascals,and to administer anti-dotes to neutralize the communal poison in our body politic.

 For this purpose I appealed to all non-Muslims to keep one day roza on 4th July which was during Ramzan. I myself have been keeping one day roza during Ramzan for several years. This is just as a token of respect and solidarity with our Muslim brothers and sisters. In my appeal I also requested non Hindus to keep one day fast during Navratri. The response to my appeal was overwhelming, and many Hindus and other non Muslims kept roza on 4th July

 Some Hindus said that they would abide by my appeal and keep one day roza on 4th July, but added that they doubted that Muslims would keep one day fast during Navratri. However, many Muslims said that they would.

 Navratri is starting on 13th October. I appeal to all non Hindus to keep one day fast on 13th October, or if for some reason that is not possible, on any other day during Navratri. You may ask your Hindu friends what you can eat and drink on that day.

 By keeping one day fast you will not get converted from your religion. It is just a token of respect and solidarity with people of other religions, which is absolutely necessary to keep India united.

Friday 9 October 2015

Role of the Intellectuals

I have said several times that India is heading for a Revolution, because all our state institutions have become hollow and empty shells, and the massive socio-economic problems of the country like poverty, unemployment, healthcare, price rise, malnourishment, etc cannot be solved within the system.

 The aim of this Revolution will be to create a just social order in which our people get decent lives, with proper employment, food, education, healthcare, housing and enjoy a high standard of living
 But before a Revolution can take place there has to be a profound and prolonged ideological struggle by the patriotic modern minded intelligentsia against backward, feudal ideas and practices.

If one recalls the French Revolution of 1789, it was preceded by several decades of struggle in the cultural and ideological fields by Voltaire, Rousseau,, Diderot, Hollbach, Helvetius and other thinkers of the Enlightenment e.g. the Encyclopediasts, who all fought for destruction of the feudal order in France, and creation of a modern, just society. None of these thinkers lived long enough to see the French Revolution of 1789, but they had contributed to it.

  Similarly, when young people ask me what should they do to help in bringing about the Indian Revolution, my answer is that first you must lay the ideological groundwork for the Revolution ( as Voltaire, Rousseau, etc did in France ), and for that you must spread scientific and rational ideas among the masses, and ideologically combat casteism, communalism and superstitions.

  You may not live to see the day when our Revolution is successful and when our people start getting decent lives( I almost certainly will not, as I am already in my 70th year ), but what of that ? You will have contributed to it, just as Voltaire and Rousseau did. Let that be your reward.

 Intellectuals are the eyes of a society, and without intellectuals society is blind. So our patriotic modern minded intelligentsia, particularly the youth,  have a historical role before them. Let them do there duty

Wednesday 7 October 2015

My views on Kashmir

The publisher/editor of an Urdu magazine in Kashmir has sent me the following questionnaire  by email :

(1)    Katju sir, you have a definite Kashmiri ancestry  and in this context you have also put up a detailed post in your blog last year. Could you please elaborate it?
(2)    In a recent telephonic conversation with me, you spoke freely and frankly on various aspects of the Complex Kashmir Problem. Would I ask as to why you appear to be annoyed and angry with Separatists, mainstream Political leadership from the valley, Indian leaders and Pakistani leadership. On repeated occasions, You have held them individually responsible for this vexed problem. Kindly let us know as to how all of them could be responsible for this mess in a single time frame?
(3)    Sir, Shall it not be better if you clearly and directly address to Kashmir’s muslim majority. Let them also know what you want to say. After all people respect your  honesty ,clear heartedness and crystal clear integrity. You can freely and  directly  present your point of view as a  Kashmiri.
(4) Sir, what  permanent solution do you perceive of this vexed problem? You have been a legal luminary  of the country and let us presume this issue comes up before your good self for decision/ resolution/ solution, would you very kindly clarify as to what shall you decide as its just  and final  solution.
(5) Sir, recently Mr R S Dulat retired chief of RAW has published a book and he has comprehensively touched most of the contours and layers of this vexed problem. Sir have you gone through this book? Do you agree with what Mr Dulat says in the Book especially that New Delhi has been feeding almost all segments and entities of separatists in Kashmir?
(6)  Sir, What are your views on migration of Kashmiri Pandits from valley? According to your information how and why did it happen? And sir what do you feel about the issue of return of Kashmiri Pandits to valley ? There is an organization called PANUN KASHMIR which has a different perspective on theissue of return of Kashmiri Pandits to valley. How do you view this complex issue of return of Kashmiri Pandits to valley ?
(7) Sir, you have spoken to me that you have  friendly and warm feelings towards all Kashmiris irrespective of their religion or caste .Does your ancestral lineage and  warm blood make you to feel like that?
(8) Sir,  you  keep sending Tweets  and  post  your views  on other social media on almost  all issues  facing the country in particular  and society in General. A section of  your readers feel that by doing so, you want to be in the News. Is it so ?

My answers are as follows :
(1) The answer to  question number (1) is contained in my blog on which I am reproducing below :
My First Home
I have seven homes in India, Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bengal, Orissa, Tamilnadu, and Delhi and so I am truly all Indian. Let me mention about them one by one, in separate posts. This post is about Kashmir, my first home

I am a Kashmiri Pandit. There are two kinds of Kashmiri Pandits, the Kashmiri speaking ones, and the non Kashmiri speaking ones. The non Kashmiri speaking Kashmiri Pandits ( like myself) are those whose ancestors had migrated from Kashmir valley about 200 years back. These Kashmiri Pandits all migrated in exactly the same way, that is, they got employment in some princely state, i.e. in the Court of some Maharaja or Nawab ( they got such jobs as Kashmiri Pandits were highly proficient in Urdu and Persian, the Court languages).  The ancestors of Pt. Nehru, Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru, etc had all come from Kashmir in this way. Having left Kashmir, they forgot the Kashmiri language after about two generations, and now know only Hindi and English ( those upto my father's generaation were highly proficient in Urdu, but those in my generation have forgotten it. ). My estimate is that they are between one and two lacs in number. My own ancestor, Pt. Mansa Ram Katju migrated from Kashmir about 200 years ago and got service in the Court of the Nawab of Jaora. Jaora is a town in Ratlam district in western Madhya Pradesh, on the border of Rajasthan. My family lived in Jaora for several generations until my grandfather Dr. K.N. Katju moved to U.P. and settled in Allahabad
These non Kashmiri speaking Kashmiris, like my family, did not migrate from Kashmir because of persecution but because of job opportunities in the plains. They were highly proficient in Persian and Urdu ( though those of my generation have forgotten it ) and so they got jobs in princely states in India i.e. courts of some Maharaja or Nawab where the court language was Urdu. All the Kashmiri Pandits who migrated from Kasmir to the plains of India at that time, and whose descendants have since then forgotten the Kashmiri language,  came exactly in the same way.
My ancestor Pt. Mansa Ram Katju, who migrated from Kashmir about 200 years ago has written in Persian in the register of the panda of Kurukshetra ' batalash-e-maash aamadaam ' which means ' I have in quest of bread ' ( i.e. job )

The Kashmiri speaking Pandits ( like my wife) are those who can speak Kashmiri ( apart from Hindi and English). Such Kashmiri Pandits are those who remained in Kashmir, and would be today about 3 lacs in number ( most of them fled from Kashmir after the selected killings of Kashmiri Pandits from 1989 onwards). Kashmiri language is totally different from Hindi, and when my wife speaks to her relatives in Kashmiri I cannot understand,though we have been married for over 45 years.

Though the non Kashmiri speaking Kashmiri Pandits had left Kashmir about 200 years ago, they married only among themselves, and not with the local Pandits or other communities. Also, they retained their food habits. They are non vegetarians, their preference being for Kashmiri mutton dishes, e.g. roghanjosh, yaqni,kabargah, kofta, rista, etc, apart from vegetarian dishes like dam aloo, haq, etc.

Although such Kashmiri Pandits had migrated about 200 years ago, we never forgot Kashmir, and proudly called ourselves Kashmiris. We were like the Jews who had migrated a long time back from their homeland, but said in their prayers :
 " If I forget thee, O Jerusalem
   let my right hand forget its skill
   If I do not remember thee
   let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth"
                                     Psalm : 137.5
 The same was always our sentiment for Kashmir

Despite leaving Kashmir so long ago, we would perform the Kashmiri Pandit religious rituals regularly, e.g. Shivratri puja, pun, etc. I remember when I was very young on Shivratri day my family members used to go in a procession to a door, behind which was another family member. We used to say " Kuch choo, kuch choo", and the person inside would say, "Kay heyth ", and we would say " An dhan Laxmi", and then the door would be opened and we would enter. It was only after my marriage with a Kashmiri speaking lady that I came to know what we had been chanting for 200 years without understanding its meaning ( like many people chanting Sanskrit mantras). In Kashmiri language, ' kus choo ?" means "who is it?". "Kus choo" became "Kuch Choo" after 200 years, and "kay hyeth" i.e. ' what have you brought with you ?", became "kay heyth". It was only when my wife told us the meaning of what we had been chanting for 200 years that we understood its meaning.

Although the Kashmiri Pandits who had migrated about 200 years ago were only a tiny community in the regions where they had settled, their influence ( like that of the Parsis, another tiny community) far outweighed their numbers. We were a highly respected intellectual community, and having first taken up service in some princely state, in a later generation we entered the legal profession, where we excelled. In U.P. not only were some of the top lawyers in the Allahabad High Court Kashmiri Pandits, in about one half of the district Courts in U.P. the leader of the bar was a Kashmiri Pandit ( though in each town we were only a few dozen in numbers). The same was the position in many other north Indian states where Kashmiri Pandits had settled

Still later many of us entered the civil services, or became business executives, etc, and some migrated to foreign countries. Some of us, like Pt. Nehru, entered public life, and rose to high positions. My grandfather was a Union Home and Law Minister

(2) The question numbers (2), (3) and (4) are really the same, and so I may answer them together.
  Firstly, let me tell you that most Kashmiri Muslims love and respect me, though I have called most of them stupid in demanding freedom from India ( just as I have called most Indians stupid for being casteist, communal and superstitious ). I have always condemned atrocities on Kashmiri Muslims.
I remember once when I was sitting in court in the Supreme Court suddenly 50-60 young people entered my courtroom and stood there hearing the proceedings. At lunch interval when I was proceeding to my chamber my peon came running to me and said that these young people are Kashmiris from Kashmir who wanted to meet me. So I invited them to the judges lounge for a cup of tea, and I also sent a message to my dear friend, late Mr. Altaf Ahmed, senior advocate of the Supreme Court, who had earlier been Advocate General of J&K and Additional Solicitor General of India, to join us, as he was a Kashmiri who could speak in Kashmiri ( which I do not know ). These Kashmiri youth were law students of Kashmir University, and had come for an excursion to Delhi and elsewhere, and hearing that there was a Kashmiri Pandit judge in the Supreme Court they felt an affinity with me, as I had towards them, and wanted to meet me. I told them that our religions may be different ( I am in fact an atheist ), our DNA was the same. They felt very happy in my company, and thought I was one of them. Then when my friend Altaf Ahmed came and started talking to them in Kashmiri they were even more delighted, because everyone likes to hear and speak in his/her mother tongue.
 On another occasion, another batch of young Kashmiri boys and girls wanted to meet me, and I invited them to my residence for tea. I also requested Altaf and his wife to come. Altaf, his wife and my wife all spoke to these young people in Kashmiri, and they felt at home. Later my wife served some delicious non vegetarian snacks, which everyone enjoyed.
   Now coming to the political issues. I have consistently said that the real and only solution to the Kashmir problem is reunification of India and Pakistan ( and Bangladesh ) under a strong secular government which will not tolerate religious extremism of any kind, whether Hindu or Muslim, and crush it with an iron hand. I have also repeatedly said that Pakistan is a fake, artificial country created by the British on the basis of the bogus two nation theory ( see my article online ' The Truth about Pakistan ', which was published in the Pakistani newspaper ' The Nation ' some time back ), and we are bound to reunite one day ( though that will take time ), just as West and East Germany reunited after a separation of 45 years.
 What is Pakistan ? It is Punjab, Sindh, Baluchistan and NWFP. These were all parts of India since Mughal times. When I meet Pakistanis I feel no different from them. We speak the same language, Hindustani, look like each other, have the same food habits ( biryani, etc ), same love for Urdu poetry and classical language, etc. In fact we are one. Indians and Pakistanis abroad mix socially as if Partition  had never taken place.
 The Partition of 1947 was a historical British fraud and swindle, to keep Hindus and Muslims fighting each other, so that we may remain weak and backward, and thus not become another China, a powerful rival to Western industry, of which now we have all the potential. Also, Indo-Pak tension will ensure continuity of sales of the Western arms industries in our sub continent, thus giving them huge profits, when all these billions of dollars spent by India and Pakistan for foreign arms purchases could be spent on the welfare of our poor peoples.
 To those who say that Partition was done a long time back, and now talk of reunification is fantasy and day dreaming, my reply is that when Mazzini spoke of unification of Italy most people called it a fantasy and day dreaming, but later it became a reality under Cavour and Garibaldi. Germany, which was divided into hundreds of principalities, became united under Bismarck.
  Now let me answer those who want independence for Kashmir.
The real problems of the people of our sub continent are massive poverty, unemployment, malnourishment, lack of healthcare and good education, etc. These can only be solved by creating a massive modern industry, because it is only modern industry which can generate the wealth required to achieve our objective. Even setting up a single primary school requires a huge amount of money, to pay salaries to teachers and staff, building funds, purchase of books for a library, etc. We have to set up not just one such school but hundreds of thousands of them, tens of thousands of high schools, colleges, technical institutes, engineering colleges, medical colleges, scientific research institutes, etc. Where is the money for all this going to come from ? Money does not fall from the sky. It can only come from a highly developed industry.
 But to set up a highly developed industry we require a large market, because the goods that are produced have to be sold. Modern industry arose in Europe by the smashing down of the small feudal principalities and creation of nation states which provided a large market. Similarly, can Kashmir exist independently and prosper ? No, it will remain poor, for modern industry cannot develop in a small state like Kashmir. In fact, even Jammu will not join it, as its people who are mostly Hindu will prefer to remain in India.
 Apart from the above, if Kashmir is allowed to secede from India, then tomorrow the Nagas will demand independence, then Mizos, Tamils, etc. Where will this end ? India will break up into pieces, and modern industry, which alone can abolish  poverty and other socio-economic evils in our sub continent, cannot develop. So that must never be allowed. Kashmiris should stop foolishly demanding independence and instead demand reunification of India and Pakistan ( and Bangladesh ) under a secular, federal government.
 Kashmir was always part of India ever since it was incorporated into the Mughal Empire in 1587 by the great Mughal Emperor Akbar
 I condemn atrocities on Kashmiri Muslims, as I regard them my blood brothers and sisters, just as I condemn the atrocities on Kashmiri Pandits ( see my blog on ' Kashmiri Pandits ') and atrocities on everyone anywhere on earth, but that does not mean that we should not look beyond one's nose and not consider what I have said above.
 As regards Indian politicians, they are mostly a bunch of rogues and rascals who have looted the country and polarized our people on the basis of caste and religion, and the only way out is a Revolution. These politicians, despite tall promises of 'vikas' etc are incapable of solving our real massive problems of poverty, unemployment, healthcare, etc and so divert attention to caste and religion.
 India ( of which I regard not only Kashmir but also Pakistan a part ) is a country of great diversity, with so many religions, castes, languages, ethnic groups, etc, and so only secularism and giving equal respect to all can keep it together and lead us to the path of progress ( see my blog ' What is India ?). This was the policy of the great Emperor Akbar who gave equal respect to all, and whom I regard as the real Father of our nation ( see my blog ' The Real Father of the Nation '), not those British agents Gandhi and Jinnah ( see my blogs on them ).

(3) As regards your question number (5), I have not read Mr. Dulat's book, and I do not know whether Delhi has been feeding separatists in Kashmir

(4)  I condemn the atrocities on Kashmiri Pandits in Kashmir from 1989 onwards. Kashmiri Pandits constituted a small minority in Kashmir (3% or so).They were a gentle peace loving people, but many were selectively targeted and slaughtered, and other atrocities committed on them, and ultimately most of them they had to flee from their homeland out of fear. Since Kashmiri Pandits are only 5 lac or so in number in India they are not a big vote bank, and so hardly anyone lifted a finger when they were hounded out from their homeland. I am myself a Kashmiri Pandit, and though my ancestors had left the valley about 200 years ago (my wife's family remained in Kashmir till recent times, and many of her relatives have told me about the atrocities and indignities they had to suffer in Kashmir) I can fully understand their pain.
 A Kashmiri Pandit lady doctor in Delhi, who is a relative of my wife, and whose family had to flee in fear from  Kashmir, told me that when she was young a crowd of Kasmiri Muslims came to her house in Srinagar and shouted that the male members of the family should get out of Kashmir, leaving the females behind. This was no doubt a brave act on the part of those Kashmiri Muslims.
The Kashmiri Pandits began to leave in much greater numbers in the 1990s during the eruption of militancy, following persecution and threats by radical Islamists and militants. The events of 19 January 1990 were particularly vicious. On that day, mosques issued declarations that the Kashmiri Pandits were Kafirs and that the males had to leave Kashmir, convert to Islam or be killed. Those who chose to the first of these were told to leave their women behind so that they could be used as sex slaves. The Kashmiri Muslims were instructed to identify Pandit homes so they could be systematically targeted for conversion or killing.
 Kashmiri Pandits were killed both individally or in groups. On 14.9.1989 Pt. Tika Lal Taploo was killed. In 1998 the terrible Wandhaam massacre of 23 Kashmiri Pandits, including women and children took place, the Hindu temple and houses of Kashmiri Pandits destroyed.. Many more such incidents can be related.
Many Kashmiri Muslims blame Governor Jagmohan for the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the valley, but what did Jagmohan do ? He only provided Kasmiri Pandits transport to leave the valley, where a reign of terror had been created for them.
 Supposing someone had provided transports for Jews to leave Nazi Germany. Should he be blamed, or the Nazis who were committing horrible atrocities on the Jews ? So it is silly to blame Jagmohan. Should Kashmiri Pandits have remained behind in the valley and be slaughtered ?
On Jan, 04, 1990, a local Urdu newspaper, Aftab, published a press release issued by Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, asking all Pandits to leave the Valley immediately. Al Safa, another local daily repeated the warning.These warnings were followed by Kalashnikov-wielding masked Jehadis carrying out military-type marches openly. Reports of killing of Kashmiri Pandits continued to pour in. Bomb explosions and sporadic firing by militants became a daily occurrence.
Explosive and inflammatory speeches  ..

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This is the truth, the reality, of the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir, the land where they had lived for centuries. Does anyone leave his home and homeland unless terror is struck in his heart ? Kashmiri Muslims should consider this. How would they feel if they are all thrown out of Kashmir ? Out of the several lac Kashmiri Pandits in the valley before 1989 only 3445 remain today, as a J&K govt. report noted.
 I doubt that Kashmiri Pandits will return in the near future, if at all, to Kashmir. They are small in number, and jehadi elements are still presnt in Kashmir who may kill them.
  In this connection I may mention that I tried to unite all Kashmiris, Muslim and Hindu under an organization called the Chinar Foundation ( see my blog on it ) but failed. Kashmiri Pandits are too bitter after their horrendous experience to unite with Kashmiri Muslims. I tried to reason with them that no doubt what happened in the past was terrible, but now we must apply a healing balm on the wounds of both Kashmiri Pandits and Kashmiri Muslims ( who too have suffered and are still suffering ) and move ahead, but no one listened to me.
 I have little idea of Panun Kashmir, and have no contact with its members.

(5) As regards your question number (7) my rely is already contained in my reply to your question number (1)

(6) Regarding your question number (8), it is totally false to say that what I write on facebook, bog and twitter is to remain in the news. I do so because I have found my country ( in which I include Pakistan and Kashmir ) in a terrible condition, and wish to remedy the situation, and make India prosperous with its people enjoying a high standard of living. For this clarity of ideas is necessary, and that is what I have been doing. We must attack feudal, backward ideas and spread scientific and rational thinking among our masses. I am not a publicity or popularity seeker. In fact I have a low opinion of publicity of popularity seekers, and regard such seeking as a form of vulgarity. But what i wish to do is publicize and spread my ideas, which i think are sorely needed by the nation..