Follow us:

Post a Comment
Share your thoughts
You are not logged in, please log in or register
Must See
Daily Mail
Order by
Jun 05, 2010
04:11 AM
Pakistan's LeT and 26/11 carnage mastermind criminal Prof Hafeez Saeed = Arundhoti Roy

Stunning similarities. Replace naxals, with Muslims and both speak the same language.
dallas, United States
Jun 05, 2010
04:23 AM
Let terrorist Hafeez Saeed and Naxal instigator ,Arundhuti roy , seem to have same respect for democracy.
dallas, United States
Jun 05, 2010
04:49 AM
This can only happen in India. Living in this country these people are working against the country and its constitution. Maoist dictatorship!! Wow!! What a solution Ms Roy, Bravo!
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
05:06 AM
"organised by the Committee for Protection of Democratic Rights..."

People supporting Maoists call themselves protectors of democratic lights. But then North Korea calls itself democratic as well.
Jun 05, 2010
07:29 AM
Vatican's plants Sonia,Rahul and Arundhati are provoking the tribals against the nation using missionaries as leaders maquerading as tribal leaders.Narendra Modi put Arundhati in her place in NBA movement.This Arundhati went to her air conditioned comforts,while sincere people like Medha Patkar slogged.Chidambaram should take a leaf out of Modi's strong action and ignore anti-nationals like Arundhati.
Bangalore, India
Jun 05, 2010
08:04 AM
If Maoists did to Pakistan , what they are doing to India, Pakistan would call for the extradition, prosecution and eventual may be execution of Arundhuti Roy , just like we are demanding extradition, prosecution and punishment for LeT terrorist Hafeez Saeed.

Think about it. Arundhuti Roy is our own Hafeez Saeed, mastermind of naxal terrorists, and she walks free, conspiring against Indian democracy.
dallas, United States
Jun 05, 2010
09:37 AM
Arundhati is a MAOIST!!! she Said it very clearly... now..... Her apologists will still claim she has been "misinterpreted" by media???
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
01:56 PM
Freedom to be able to expose tyranny, even of the State IS a democratic right. And the Indian state has a very bad record at guaranteeing the freedom of speech and thought. For every Arundhati Roy who enjoys the media spotlight, there are hundreds of Dr. Binayak Sens who languish in jail for speaking out against the State's tyranny.
In this aspect, and in others such as guarantee of life and thought, the Indian democracy needs protection, and constant exposure of its shortcomings. In that, we in India are very lucky indeed to have these prominent voices of dissent like Arundhati Roy.
We who enjoy the economic success of our broken system, must know what it is to be at the receiving end of its failure.
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 05, 2010
02:31 PM
But Garde- She is arguing AGAINST this so called "fake democracy" . Don't you see? She clearly stated her stand. "I stand on this side of the line". Now what else you want? Granted ,as an Indian citizen(which she is ashamed of anyway) she has freedom of speech. But she is abusing it to overthrow the system that gave her that freedom and bring a new Maoist system!! How do you justify that? Garde, do you believe Maoists should take over India like Arundhati. Just say yes or no.
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
03:31 PM
The photo proves once again what a hypocrite this goddess of maoists is. She was protesting against MNCs ,especially those who sell bottled water & soft drinks . Now she is happily posing with a similar bottle, in front of her !! what a fraud !!
lookout bug me not
mumbai, India
Jun 05, 2010
03:52 PM
It is indian Constitution which grants liberty to ANDHAdhuty Roy to deliver speech like this,But her fellow tribals with bows and arrows moving in jungle to fight against wild animals never belive in this Indian Constitution.They believe in Mao,they have liberty to dedrail trains,blast buses,blow off school buildings, panchayat houses which are of public use granted by the Indian nation.
in Orissa there is no maoists in mineral rich area,even districts with maoist affect ther is no incident of maoist activities in mines area except two or three minor incident in last two years though activities of naxal dates back to 1969.How ANDHAdhuty came to inference that tribals( not maoist) with guns are protesting Multinational companies.
sambalpur, India
Jun 05, 2010
04:25 PM
Both factions of Shiv Sena make lot of noise against the hapless Biharis.But,when Arundhati is indulging in virtually anti-national activities in Mumbai, they are nowhere in the scene.Next time atleast they should not allow her to carry on her tirade against the good intentions of taking action against the killer Maoists.
Bangalore, India
Jun 05, 2010
05:35 PM
Maoist = Taleban
From HT today
"Over 150 people belonging to 35 families have migrated from their ancestral forest village in Chhattisgarh's restive Bastar region after Maoists branded them police informers and threatened to wipe them out"

A Roy = LeT terrorist Hafeez Saeed. Period.
dallas, United States
Jun 05, 2010
07:59 PM
Arundhati = Maoist, Maoists= Terrorists hence
Arundhati= Terrorists. Agreed
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
08:00 PM
Arundhati = Maoist, Maoists= Terrorists hence
Arundhati= Terrorist. Agreed
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
08:00 PM
Arundhati = Maoist, Maoists= Terrorists hence
Arundhati= Terrorist. Agreed
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 05, 2010
08:02 PM
Oh yes,Arundhati Roy IS a Terrorist, she need to be treated like a terrorist. She is supporting murder. Arrest her now!!!!!
Patali Putra, India
Jun 05, 2010
08:36 PM
Arundhati Roy is publicity monger,she want to remain in limelight at any cost. She very alter where there any crisis she jump immediately in that movement.She never care on which side justice or injustice.When Narmada dam crisis were there she rushed there. She and Med ha Patkar both have nuance value newspaper and T.V. always want this kind of people to increase their sale. Vinod you are also same boat.You media people are given her prestige otherwise she is nothing.
Ramesh Raghuvanshi
Pune, India
Jun 05, 2010
09:09 PM
Taleban, LeT terrorist and Maoist leader Arundhuti, are equal dangers to democratic systems and free speech.
When Maoists come to power , the 1st thing they do is slit the thrroats of dissenters.

I think Taleban terrorist Hafeez Saeed is more honest about himself , there hatred of democratic secular, India and their goals than Arundhuti Roy.
What do you say ?
dallas, United States
Jun 06, 2010
01:51 AM
Unfortunately living in a cola world has made us look for yes or no type of instant answers to instant questions.
When Arundhati says "I am on this side of the line", everybody misses the point that she is talking about the line that PC HAS DRAWN. It was the home minister who has been talking in a "with us or against us" language especially with liberal dissenters - Arundhati has chosen to be not on PC's side of the line. This, in the language of the State puts her on the other side of the line.
Not just Arundhati Roy, but a lot of those who dont agree with the center's way of driving the tribals to war have felt the state say this - you are against us. They have faced jail and worse.
And those of us who value freedom of speech yet virulently advocate stifling it for Arundhati Roy - know nothing about it. The present conflict, and the genocide to be, arises from voices being muffled - for too long.
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 06, 2010
01:57 AM
What non-sensical line are you talking about ??

In a democracy like India, millions diagree with any government or political party at any given time. But thuggary, murder, violence have no place in democracy.

You cannot be for Maoist criminals ( anyone in tribal areas will tell you that Maoists are a criminal mafia in tribal areas involved in extortion ) and for democracy.

A roy is a worst charlatan than LeT terrorist Hafeez Saeed.
dallas, United States
Jun 06, 2010
02:06 AM
P Sainathand Binayak Sen etc. have lived and worked in the tribal areas for a long time. They have never been able to simpify the problem to the aaj-tak level by saying "maoists are criminal mafia".
Oversimplification and then dehumanisation are the first steps towards genocide. Our government has succeded in doing both at the bidding of big corporations.
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 06, 2010
03:13 AM
Whatever else one may say of Arundhati, she always elicits the maximum number of comments!
Dallas, United States
Jun 06, 2010
03:35 AM
I have lived through Bengal of late sixties and early seventies. CPI-ML (Marxist-Leninist) were in full flow. The walls of towns were plastered with pictures of Mao ( whose wife was later hung by the Chinese for genocide against chinese people. The spared Mao ) and slogans like "Chinese chairman is our Chairman".

These naxalites, were the biggest criminals in town. Evry goonda, every extortionist and every criminal in Bengal became a naxalist, because it was an easy way to extort money and rob.

Anyone , who seeks to give any semblence of legitimacy to these same crowd is either a fool or one of them. In a democracy , which gives you all the rights of free expression etc, you have to play by the rules. If you indulge in violence, you are a terrorist.
dallas, United States
Jun 06, 2010
07:20 AM
If Mother India has daughters like Arundhati Roy, she doesn’t need enemies-the enemy is within.

Arundhati Roy backs Maoists, dares authorities to arrest her

Thursday, June 3, 2010 14:36 IST-DNA
Scaria Varghese
Melbourne, Australia
Jun 06, 2010
08:38 AM
Amongst all the dimwits getting their undies bunched up, this one takes the cake ...

--"A roy is a worst charlatan than LeT terrorist Hafeez Saeed."

Cutting off your nose to spite your face is a trait shared by Jihadis and Sanghis alike.
SF, United States
Jun 06, 2010
08:41 AM
--"Stunning similarities. Replace naxals, with Muslims and both speak the same language."

Stunning similarities. Replace Taliban with Hindutvadis and there is no difference. They are both terrists.
SF, United States
Jun 07, 2010
02:00 AM
Just as armed violence by Jihadis has criminalized large sections of the Pak population, similarly arming and violence by naxals, will criminalize a section of the tribals , for which all tribals will end up paying the price, while the naxal leadership of charlatans will deliver lectures, protected by the democractic state, that they seek to violate.

Only a very small section , less than 2% of tribals may participate in naxal engineered violence, but that will criminalize the tribal areas and push them back further.

Where do these naxals get the arms, the jeeps ? Is it all esxtortion money ? The naxal ideology and criminal violence will only bring more misery to the hapless tribals.

Democracy offers the best hope to the tribals, while naxalist violence will push them back further.
dallas, United States
Jun 07, 2010
09:08 AM
Most commentators here may like to read the interview of ex-DIG of BSF Mr. EN Rammohan titled ‘Bringing On The Army Against The Naxals Will Be A Disaster’ in
Excerpts:"It is not about development. It is about rights. This government has to understand — how is it that land ceiling was implemented in Kerala? Why is there no Maoist movement there? Under EMS Namboodiripad, the law was so strong that anyone who was a tenant farmer for 12 years, the ownership of the land passed to him without compensation to the owner. We are now in 2010, but in most parts of the country, we are behaving as though we are in 1610 or something. Do you know in Australia and the US now, they say that if any minerals or oil is found in the Reservation areas, that resource belongs to the Aborigines and Native Americans. In India also, the first thing that should be declared is that if minerals are found in the forest, it belongs to the people of that forest. The MOUs should be signed by all the people of that village with that company. After that, give them legal guidance and see that the profit comes to their accounts. Is the government in Delhi prepared to do that? Why should they? Every MOU has a Swiss Bank account attached. I can guarantee there will not be any ceasefire — because the Maoists organising or leading this are on the run. If they stop, it will be very difficult to start again. I don’t think they are going to give up their guns. We have to convince the cadres that the government has changed its policy on land and forest rights and mining."
Shyamal Barua
kolkata, India
Jun 07, 2010
01:49 PM
Maoist versus State: A response to Civil Society

: In favour of colonialism

In the Maoist versus Indian State ‘problem’ the Civil Society representatives are hurling all sorts of abuses at the Indian State.

I am sure most of it is justified.

As the debate rages on how to ‘deal’ with the situation, many proposals are being made, including some which advocate ‘military solutions’ and some advocating ‘development models’. As if the two can really be separated!!

Be that as it may, reality is, for the neglect of tribal areas and abdication of its responsibility towards citizens of India in those areas which has led to steady growth of and control by the parallel government of what is called ‘Maoists’, the Indian State deserves all the brickbats that are being hurled its way.

Amongst the many epithets, one of the most common epithets hurled at the Indian state are that it is behaving like a colonialist with the tribal population and lands. The model of development of the areas as proposed and implemented by the Indian State is very colonial and is causative of the Maoist phenomenon.

To me this gives a sense of déjà vu.

I have, all through my 50+ years (or at least 40+, leaving out early childhood days), been an ‘anti-colonialist’.

Now, if you ask me to define anti-colonialism, I shall reel out the familiar arguments of exploitation, heartlessness, debauchery, corruption, rape, bastardisation of entire societies, creation of ‘inferiority complex’- the entire list of outcomes from an ‘unequal relationship’.

I shall not be short of examples from all over world of the shameful and inexcusable degradation of human existence caused by colonialists.

However, as a means of drawing ‘natives’ into the ‘modern’ society, specially a social and political construct like India, I cannot think of any other means which could have given a better result.

Prior to the British colonialists, with their ‘white man’s burden’ and Christian missionaries, convinced of ‘superiority’ of their social, political and religious structures, all who came to India, themselves became ‘Indians’, happily adopting most of the ills of the society.

It was only the colonialist who never became native. As he sucked the life blood of all Indians-high caste, low caste, rulers and the ruled, intellectual and religious, ‘Indians’ learnt the reality of the ills of the Caste System-the original version of ‘unequal relationship’. Only this time the High Castes-the colonialists- managed to keep their purity as they did not ‘mingle’ with the Low Castes-the natives, beyond the barest necessity.

Let us admit, the English coloniser bound by his own ‘democratic ideals’, civic ethics and education was the least corrosive exploiter. In fact in certain respects quite ‘guilt ridden’ and susceptible to emotional blackmail.

Natives learnt value of ‘equality’ in the most basic manner. Respect for ‘difference’ became even pronounced. ‘Unity’ as a political strength was learnt in the fires of harshest furnace.

As the colonialist harvested wealth and resources of the land and people for his ‘homeland’, he brought in education and technology and natives got ‘exposed’ to the instruments of ‘modernity’.

As the colonialist governed natives, instruments of modern civil society were laid out to them.

The interaction and compulsions of governance and economic activities over the long period that it continued set in motion its own dynamics, resulting in richly experienced manpower and a structure built to withstand most upheavals. Economic activities too had assumed a face and form which was forward oriented, even though not the best and most suitable one it surely created a situation for the local genius to take over.

May I now bring forth that the Indian state is the best and most humane coloniser available to lands and people of places like Dantewada, perhaps much better than British were for ‘Indians’.

In fact the ‘coloniser’ status is long past as the purely exploitative relationship stage is long past and currently the ‘co-operative’ and ‘patron’ stage on the developmental curve is a better description of the relationship of tribal lands with the Indian state.

With active involvement of the civil society and the state machinery democratic institutions can and should be delivered to the tribal-post haste.

The Maoist alternative is so deeply exploitative, degrading and short term that the sooner it is abandoned, the better it would be.

It allows for no development and growth except treating the tribal as fodder for its ‘larger’ goal of ‘overthrow of the state and capture of political power’.

The Maoist is marching to tunes of a distant drummer who is beating the rhythm of global conquest and global rule by the ‘proletariat’.

Whatever may that mean, it does send a shiver up my independence and democracy valuing spine.
Atul Chandra
Jun 07, 2010
02:05 PM
"Let us admit, the English coloniser bound by his own ‘democratic ideals’, civic ethics and education was the least corrosive exploiter"

No, only thing we'll admit - is that you need to read more....
lookout bug me not
mumbai, India
Jun 07, 2010
02:30 PM
Shyamal Barua
kolkata, India

"EMS Namboodiripad"
He is the same person who supported China's invasion on India saying what China is doing is right and it is on record.

We dont want this kind of example those who are anti national. May be good for Kerala but not for nation at large.

Even WB's land reform was the worst reform in post independence, may be it pretends to be pro farmer but served no good to WB nor to this country that's why large section of poor are migrating from WB to other state in search of livelihood.

"We have to convince the cadres that the government has changed its policy on land and forest rights and mining."

We dont want a govt which bows down to terrorist demand any more just because this so called free lancer write and speak saying that we are raising voice in support of tribal s. Now dont compare Kandhar episode with this kind of internal terrorism.

Back bone of this moment has to be broken by blocking suspicious church account. This Maoist say they are protecting culture, traditional, ethics, morals but same they dont do any thing to those who give them western god name and western name but same they kill state machinery.

Even Justice Wadhwa commission carrying our judiciary enquiry on the murder of missionary Graham Staines too has blamed churches for this incident and tried to expose the evil design of missionaries’, which they are carrying out inside remote tribal regions.

But our govt didn't payed head to it and now we are facing threat from internal people only.
Ahmedabad, India
Jun 07, 2010
02:38 PM
"He is the same person who supported China's invasion on India saying what China is doing is right and it is on record.'

Mitrokhin the Custodian of KGB Files has stated in his book that suitcases full of Indian currency used to be delivered by KGB to Namboodripad.
ram prasn haryanvi
Ambala Cantt, India
Jun 07, 2010
06:14 PM
All of these intellectuals will jot down in their diaries in exquisite detail how the nation subjugated/decimated this or that community but will not say a word about the inherently violent logic of nation-ism itself. Heck! That's the nature of the beast. Like a snake bites, the nation homogenises -- violently, if resisted! Wouldn't it be smarter to try and dismantle it than to routinely preach to its conscience? You wanna save the indigenous communities by rallying support for Naxals? Well there's a historical blunder-in-the-making right there! It will be swallowed like Makhno's forces were swallowed by the Bolsheviks or CNT-FAI by Franco's fascist troops! The great intellectual challenge was to organise a resistance of re-wilding, of preserving indigenous life-ways and not to misdirect feral rage towards certain doom by braiding them inextricably with totalitarian nonsense! But I guess that's the hard part -- a lifetime's project. It is a lot easier to jump on to a ready-made bandwagon. Sadly, that's what Arundhati's contribution so far will be remembered for.
Jagir Sadhu
Ajnala, India
Jun 07, 2010
08:39 PM
Even among communists , the struggle for power is violent.

In Bengal CPI(M) and CPI(ML, Naxals) are sworn enemies.
Sure the Naxals are more barbaric and violent and criminal than CPI-M, who look like moderates as compared to the Naxals.

Naxals exploit the vulnerable. That's the reason they have chosen to exploit the tribals. Do tribal areas have genuine issues ?
Which part of India or community, does not have grieviences ??
But no room should be given to the corrosive and violent ideology of naxals.
dallas, United States
Jun 07, 2010
10:42 PM
Any movement in the 20th and 21st centuries should be judged by whether it is premised on, and envisions more, not less, democracy, freedom, openness, pluralism and modernity than the entity against which it is struggling. The anti-colonial,anti-apartheid and anti-totalitarian causes of the past century were certainly such progressive struggles.

The Naxalite, Kashmiri and Khalistani, as well as the Assamese and Naga, do not measure up to being visionary, enlightened movements. And the evidence of that is of course most starkly seen in their methods of resistance and opposition. They are all extremely violent in their resistance, and gratuitously intolerant of any criticism, particularly internal criticism. They do not even use words like democracy, pluralism, secularism etc. Let's take the Khalistan movement as one example. Nowhere did the Khalistanis suggest that they were discontent with the degree of democracy, freedom and secularism within India, and offer an alternative secular platform. The whole approach was "Our religion is in danger, and the evidence is that the Indian government attacked the Golden temple, so we need a separate country to protect our religion, and we will kill anyone, including Sikhs, who oppose us".

These are purely reactive and reactionary movements, which could only lead to theocratic, virulently ethno-centric or totalitarian outcomes.
Varun Shekhar
Toronto, CANADA
Jun 07, 2010
10:52 PM
A violent , intolerant movement in a democratic state ( however imperfect that democracy may be ) is a non starter. The violence will in fact make sthe conditions much worse and kill the patient.
dallas, United States
Jun 07, 2010
11:38 PM
The anti-colonial,anti-apartheid and anti-totalitarian causes of the past century were certainly such progressive struggles.

The truth of the aims of a struggle depends many a times on where the interpreters feet are.
The current struggle is very much anti-aparthied and anti-colonial from the point of view of the tribals and oppressed economic groups. The tribals have been taken advantage of for a long long time, and the promise of independence has not delivered for them ( Ram Guha: http://www.outlookin.../article.aspx?265069 )- their lands and forests are colonized by a government which runs on a consumer culture alien to their own. Their consequence is close to zero and lives dispensable because they are tribals. They have no voice, and no visibility, except as numbers of people displaced by "development", or as the most dispensable mash which is abused at whoever's will.
This is economic colonialism and literal apartheid - all within a self proclaimed democracy.
About totalitarianism - we have that too. For when some of these tribals refuse to be ground any further, our democracy unleashes on them absurdities of the "salwa judum" type, setting brother against brother, declaring them criminals if they dare their chicken in a forest. See how our democracy works for some of our countrymen ( http://www.merinews....raput/15797752.shtml ).
Democracy in India is good or bad depending on where you live. In metros, it works. Elsewhere, its the plain old jungle law that works.
The current struggle is also about removing these ailments of our democracy, the tactic of painting all dissent as maoist notwithstanding.
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 07, 2010
11:50 PM
Wanna know about the perverse nature of Indian democracy in the hinterlands?
Here is an establishment man speaking:

He is the former DG of BSF, who also investigated the recent Dantewada massacre.
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 08, 2010
10:11 AM
varun garde ...thanks for the link ... its one of the better articles out there that explains in detail what the situation is and the solutions.
SF, United States
Jun 08, 2010
10:29 AM
Varun Garde, AJT, Barua et al....
Man, you people are sure wasting your breath here!
How do you expect to argue sensibly with the rabidly prejudiced crowd consisting of Raj, Nagraj, Prasanth etc for whom the terrible internal conflicts like Kashmir, North-east or Maoists can be solved simply by solving one single equation:
Muslim = terrorist = Maoist = Christian micssionary = intellectuals !
I really envy the infinite gullibility of these armchair cyber-patriots. Life is so simple for them! All the problems of India have a magical ready-made solution, only we are not implementing it! And who is stopping us from doing that?
Arundhati Roy, of course!

Note that we love to call ourselves an ancient civilization.

prejudicedbloodthirsty and ultra-nationalist NRIs who have muddled up everything,
Kalobaran Singh
Kolkata, India
Jun 08, 2010
12:17 PM
Lookout BMN,
"No, only thing we'll admit - is that you need to read more...."
Can you tell me why don't you agree and what aspect would you like me to read more about?
Atul Chandra
Jun 08, 2010
08:06 PM
Atul Chandra, your posting was very incisive. Actually, to Singh, Garde, Ajt et al, here is a less simple solution to merely pinpointing Arundhati Roy( who can be obnoxious and long winded) as the problem. Why don't all those discontented 'tribals', Kashmiris, Manipuris and Khalistanis stand for national election on a secular, democratic, pluralistic platform, and offer an alternative model of economic development that will bring the maximum good to the highest number of people, and put their proposals to the people of India at large? Instead of derailing trains and killing 150 people, blowing up Air-India jets, expelling 200,000 Kashmiri Hindus, or indulging in Naga-Manipuri murder fests?
Varun Shekhar
Toronto, CANADA
Jun 08, 2010
08:54 PM
I have 2 suggestions, for those malcontents, who bad mouth Indian democracy and sympathize with self-evidently violent, intolerant and fascist ideology of naxals ..
Read some history, educate yourself.

1. start with Pak historian and scholar, Istiaq Ahmed

from todays Pak newspaper
The Muslim League’s propaganda struck terror in the hearts of the Hindus and Sikhs who were told that they would be paying jazya and Islamic law will prevail in all sectors of individual and collective life. The minority Shia and Ahmediyya communities were also fearful that it would result in Sunni domination

The recent attack on a congregation of Ahmedis during prayers, which claimed more than 90 innocent lives, has revived a discussion as to whether there is a connection between the creation of Pakistan and Islam. Within the Muslim League there was always a constituency in favour of Pakistan becoming an Islamic state. One of its proponents was a close confident of Jinnah: Raja Sahib Mahmudabad, a Shia. In 1939 he wrote to the historian Mohibul Hassan:

“When we speak of democracy in Islam it is not democracy in the government but in the cultural and social aspects of life. Islam is totalitarian — there is no denying about it. It is the Quran that we should turn to. It is the dictatorship of the Quranic laws that we want — and that we will have — but not through non-violence and Gandhian truth” (Mushirul Hasan, 1997: 57-8).

If the March 23, 1940, Lahore Resolution be taken as the start of the Pakistan campaign, then Jinnah had to make a breakthrough in the Muslim-majority provinces of northwestern India — Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh — each of which had regional parties headed by Muslims. The Muslim League had to convince the Muslim voters in these provinces that their leaders were courting Hindus and Sikhs and thus were paving the way for Hindu Raj under the Indian National Congress. That opportunity arrived in July 1945 when the British government announced provincial elections for February 1946. Punjab Governor Sir Bertrand Glancy has recorded in several secret fortnightly reports (FR) the tactics that the Muslim League adopted during the long election campaign. In the FR of December 27, 1945, Glancy noted:

“Among Muslims the Leaguers are increasing their efforts to appeal to the bigotry of the electors. Pirs and maulvis have been enlisted in large numbers to tour the province and denounce all who oppose the League as infidels. Copies of the Holy Quran are carried around as an emblem peculiar to the Muslim League. Feroz [Khan Noon] and others openly preach that every vote given to the League is a vote cast in favour of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). These deplorable tactics, as I have frequently said, were only to be expected; they provide a grim augury of the future peace of India and they are certainly not easy for the Unionists to counter” (Lionel Carter, 2006: 160).

In the FR of February 2, 1946, Glancy wrote:

“The ML [Muslim League] orators are becoming increasingly fanatical in their speeches. Maulvis and pirs and students travel all round the province and preach that those who fail to vote for the League candidates will cease to be Muslims; their marriages will no longer be valid and they will be entirely excommunicated...It is not easy to foresee what the results of the elections will be. But there seems little doubt the Muslim League, thanks to the ruthless methods by which they have pursued their campaign of ‘Islam in danger’, will considerably increase the number of their seats and Unionist representatives will correspondingly decline” (Carter, 2006: 171).

Similar tactics were adopted in the campaigns in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh. In his doctoral dissertation, India, Pakistan or Pakhtunistan?, Erland Jansson writes:

“The pir of Manki Sharif...founded an organisation of his own, the Anjuman-us-asfia. The organisation promised to support the Muslim League on the condition that Shariat would be enforced in Pakistan. To this Jinnah agreed. As a result the pir of Manki Sharif declared jihad to achieve Pakistan and ordered the members of his anjuman to support the League in the 1946 elections” (pg 166).

Jinnah wrote in November 1945 a letter to Pir Manki Sharif in which he promised that the Shariat would apply to the affairs of the Muslim majority. He wrote:

“It is needless to emphasise that the Constituent Assembly, which would be predominantly Muslim in its composition, would be able to enact laws for Muslims, not inconsistent with the Shariat laws and the Muslims will no longer be obliged to abide by the un-Islamic laws” (Constituent Assembly of Pakistan Debates, Volume 5, 1949, pg 46).

The Muslim League’s propaganda struck terror in the hearts of the Hindus and Sikhs who were told that they would be paying jazya and Islamic law will prevail in all sectors of individual and collective life. The minority Shia and Ahmediyya communities were also fearful that it would result in Sunni domination. This is obvious from the correspondence between the Shia leader Syed Ali Zaheer and Jinnah in July 1944 (G Allana, 1977: 375-9). Although the Council of Action of the All-Parties Shia Conference passed a resolution on December 25, 1945, rejecting the idea of Pakistan (SR Bakshi, 1997: 848-9), most Shias shifted their loyalty to the Muslim League in the hope that Pakistan will be a non-sectarian state. Initially the Ahmediyya were also wary and reluctant to support the demand for a separate Muslim state (Munir Report, 1954: 196). It is only when Sir Zafarullah was won over by Jinnah that the Ahmedis started supporting the demand for Pakistan. To all such groups Jinnah gave assurances that Pakistan will not be a sectarian state.

In my forthcoming book on the partition of Punjab, now running into more than 1,000 pages but which is at last completed and for which I am now looking for a publisher, I will shed light on how the fierce Islamist propaganda impacted on the partition of Punjab. The Sikhs had more fears than anyone else about what could happen to minorities in Pakistan. In a meeting in May 1947 sponsored by Lord Mountbatten to help the Muslims and Sikhs reach an agreement on keeping Punjab united, Jinnah offered the Sikhs all the safeguards they wanted if they agreed to support Pakistan. Only in March 1947 some 2,000-10,000 Sikhs — depending on who you cite — were butchered in the Rawalpindi rural areas so the Sikhs were very wary of Jinnah’s overtures. Chief Minister of Patiala Hardit Singh Malik writes he had an inspiration and asked Jinnah: “Sir you are making all the promises but God forbid if something happens to you, what will happen then?” The exact words Jinnah used in reply will be revealed in my forthcoming book, but the reasoning was that his followers will treat his words as sacred.

Ishtiaq Ahmed is a Visiting Research Professor at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS) and the South Asian Studies Programme at the National University of Singapore and Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Stockholm University. He is currently working on a book, Is Pakistan a Garrison State? He can be reached at

2. Then read this informed view on Kashmir

Last month, Noorjehan Baba left her home in Srinagar's Dal Gate area to start a new life across the Line of Control with the man who unleashed a war which claimed her first husband's life. Her husband, Hizb-ul-Mujahideen field commander Khurshid Baba, died in 1995, fighting the Indian forces in central Kashmir. For the next five years, Ms Baba retreated into a dark shroud which widows across South Asia are expected to do. Early this year, though, a family friend approached her with an offer of marriage. Her suitor was much older — but had wealth and status.

United Jihad Council chairman and Hizb supreme commander Mohammad Yusuf Shah's marriage to Ms Baba at his Rawalpindi home drew neither television crews nor newspaper reporters. It ought to have: that the 61-year-old jihad commander had love on his mind this summer, rather than war, tells us not a little about where Jammu and Kashmir is headed. Eight weeks after the November 2008 carnage in Mumbai, Shah told a rally in Muzaffarabad, “Jihad will continue until the independence of Kashmir.” Instead, violence in the State has diminished to an all-time low and the Hizb has all but disintegrated.

This is good news for India — but a serious problem for New Delhi's efforts at peacemaking in Jammu and Kashmir.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's low-key visit to Srinagar this week illustrates the rise of a new caution in New Delhi's policy on Jammu and Kashmir. In an address to students graduating from the Sher-i-Kashmir Agricultural University, Dr. Singh focussed on issues linked to development. For those hoping for a call to Kashmiri secessionists to renew their engagement with the government, there was only the repetition of a long-standing offer to “to hold talks with the representative of any group which shuns violence and terror.” Meaningful dialogue with Pakistan on the State, he suggested, would be “possible only when Pakistan doesn't let its territory be used for acts of terror against India”.

The Prime Minister's language illustrates the rise of a new pessimism in New Delhi on the prospects of a breakthrough in the peace process. In November 2004, during his first visit to Srinagar as Prime Minister, Dr. Singh called on young people to join him in the “adventure of building a new India and a new Kashmir.” The next year, he met twice with leaders of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference. He also initiated a consultation process with major political groups, and held separate discussions with secessionists like the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front's Yasin Malik. From 2006, New Delhi's envoy Satinder Lambah and his Pakistani counterpart Tariq Aziz started working to close a deal on Jammu and Kashmir's future.

That deal, though, was blown away by the storm winds that swept Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf from power in 2008. Pakistan's all-powerful military establishment has since made clear that it has no desire to make concessions on Jammu and Kashmir. Last year, Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram initiated a process he called “quiet diplomacy”— a series of covert contacts with the Mirwaiz Umar Farooq-led APHC, which were first made public by this newspaper. That process has come to a grinding halt. Mirwaiz Farooq has closed the door on talks until a new consensus evolves in Pakistan; jihadists made their position known by shooting a key pro-dialogue leader, Fazl Haq Qureshi, in December.

Jammu and Kashmir's political landscape has been transfigured by the death of the war which began in 1988. Last year, the State saw 3.95 terrorism-related killings per 1,00,000 population including combatants, who made up over three-quarters of the dead. Its residents are now less at risk of terrorism-related death than citizens of many countries in firearms-related crime. In South Africa, there were 71.97 murders with firearms for every 100,000 of the population; for Colombia, the figure was 50.98; Thailand recorded 31.20.

India has a low-rate of firearms-related deaths; there were 4,101 killings of this kind in 2008, National Crime Records Bureau data show. But it is interesting to note that 19.8 of every 100,000 Indians were victims of a violent crime — a probability far higher than that of being killed in terrorism-related violence in Jammu and Kashmir.

Despite concerns at the continued operations of jihadist groups, violence in the State remains in decline. In 2007, there were 170 civilian deaths; last year, 83 were killed. The security forces and the Jammu and Kashmir police lost 79 personnel last year, down from 122 in 2007. Two years ago, 472 terrorists were killed; just 239 were shot dead in 2009. Improvised explosive device use fell from 56 in 2007 to 23 last year; grenade attacks from 107 to 56. Levels of violence were marginally higher in the first five months of 2010 than during the same period in 2009 — but infiltration has been lower, suggesting that no major escalation is imminent.

The decline in violence has, oddly, made it difficult for the two key actors in the peace process — the jihadists and Kashmiri secessionist politicians — to reach for New Delhi's olive branch.

Pakistan-based jihadists have found their political leverage within Jammu and Kashmir severely degraded. India's intelligence services estimate that there are between 500 and 600 jihadists operating in the State today — less than a tenth of the numbers in 2001. Ethnic Kashmiri jihadist groups like the Hizb no longer have the network and infrastructure to benefit from post-peace politics. Islamist elements in urban Kashmir are increasingly supportive of the global jihadist project of organisations such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba, not the Jamaat-e-Islami linked, State-focussed politics of the Hizb. None of the five sons Shah left in Kashmir to be brought up by his wife Taj Begum when he left for Pakistan in 1994 has, notably, been drawn to their father's cause; three of them hold government jobs.

Last year, Shah expressly asked the Hurriyat leadership “not to take a hasty decision with regard to dialogue with Delhi, as bilateral talks had proved futile in the past.” In February, he asserted that there was “no option other than the armed struggle”.

Lashkar chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, for his part, called in a recent speech for closer jihadist-secessionist politics. “The first priority “is to end this [India's] tyrannical occupation, and to end it, it is critical that both armed struggle and political parties must be united.” “The most important thing,” Saeed went on, “is that the people of Kashmir, through their untold sacrifices in the struggle for freedom, have shown that they can give their all in the struggle against Hindu imperialism.”

In practice, this means the jihadists have thrown their weight behind Islamist patriarch Syed Ali Shah Geelani, whose Tehreek-i-Hurriyat has long rejected dialogue with New Delhi. Pressure from Mr. Geelani and the jihadists has made it difficult for the Hurriyat — the second key actor in the peace process — to move forward. It has deeper problems.

Ever since the Assembly elections were held in 2008, it has been evident to the Hurriyat that its constituency in Jammu and Kashmir is contracting. “Elections are ultimately projected as a sort of referendum by India, and that is why we have called for a complete boycott of such a process,” Mirwaiz Farooq said that November. He issued “a last call to the so-called mainstream politicians to join the separatist movement.” Humiliation followed hubris: starting from a week after the Mirwaiz held out his threat, well over half of registered voters in the State participated in the elections. Interestingly, more than 63 per cent of voters in Shah's home village, Soibug, defied the boycott call.

Last year's protests in Shopian against the alleged rape-murder of two south Kashmir women — later established as accidental deaths by the Central Bureau of Investigation — also demonstrated the Hurriyat's limited reach. Just 17 of 111 documented Shopian-related protests between May 30, 2009 and June 30, 2009 took place in rural and semi-rural areas. More than half of the rural protests, moreover, occurred in villages just outside Shopian town. Fewer than a dozen rallies drew more than 1,000 supporters.

Kashmiri secessionist politicians have come to realise that their political position rests on weak foundations. But they seem to have little idea of what to do about it. Torn between pro-dialogue realists like Butt and anti-negotiation hawks like Shabbir Shah, Mirwaiz Farooq has chosen to retreat into a shell. In a recent interview, he called on Pakistan to evolve consensus on its future position on Kashmir, a process that could, quite obviously, take years. He has also ruled out immediate engagement with New Delhi but offered no alternative.

Prime Minister Singh's speech suggests that New Delhi's patience has worn thin — and that might be just good news. Barring small pockets of Islamist-led protests in Kashmir's inner city neighbourhoods, the State government faces no major political challenge. It has, however, been unable to move forward. For more than a decade, democratic politics in Jammu and Kashmir has had to confront the prospect of a new dispensation emerging as a consequence of the peace process. Elected leaders have thus had little incentive to focus on the kind of long-term issues needed to institutionalise democratic governance. Instead of chasing the chimera of a historic peace deal with Pakistan and the secessionists, New Delhi seems to be realising that doing nothing might, paradoxical as it might seem, yield the best outcomes.

After reading the above 2, then reflect.
dallas, United States
Jun 08, 2010
09:11 PM
>Let us admit, the English coloniser bound by his own ‘democratic ideals’, civic ethics and education was the least corrosive exploiter.

Colony - 'a body of people living in a new territory but retaining ties with the parent state'. In this sense the British were colonists. But let's face it. Arrival of the British in India is the best thing that could have happened to India in the last couple of milleniums.

But then, Atul Chandra, you seem to have lost the plot. "The Maoist alternative is so deeply exploitative, degrading and short term that the sooner it is abandoned, the better it would be." Who can dipute that? I am yet to come across someone in this forum who ever called that in to question or endorsed the Maoists ways. I can't remember even likes of Arundhati Roy prescribing the Maoists solution. Some ignoromous souls may look admiringly at the Maoists out of frustration for the failure of the Indian state.

But then "May I now bring forth that the Indian state is the best and most humane coloniser available to lands and people of places like Dantewada, perhaps much better than British were for ‘Indians’".

It is not necessary, Atul Chandra, to sing paens of the Indian state while condemning the Maoist ways. If the state did one-thousanth of what was excepected of it in terms os equity, inclusivity, justice delivery etc.then I do not think Maoists could gain a foot hold in these places as they did. Partisan approach of the state in fabour of a handful near the power centre is one big reason the Maoists could mislead a section of the people to take up arms against the state which of course will not take these people out of destitution. You looked poignantly at the British 'colonisers'- a reaction in hindsight arising out of a feeling somewhere deep in the mind because the Indian state has failed miserably.

I agree with you the state is the only agency which can bring some salve to the abysmal state the larger population of the country, but then the state needs stop being a cabal in nexus with a handful of interest groups. It needs to perform the fiduiciary responsibilites vested in it in true democratic spirit. Indian people is a forgiving lot. They take lot of injustice on their stride. But breaking the proverbial camels back may be our undoing.
Jun 08, 2010
11:02 PM
kalobaran--"Muslim = terrorist = Maoist = Christian micssionary = intellectuals !
I really envy the infinite gullibility of these armchair cyber-patriots. Life is so simple for them! All the problems of India have a magical ready-made solution, only we are not implementing it! And who is stopping us from doing that?
Arundhati Roy, of course! "

LOL !! Outlook is dominated by cyber-patriots and cyber-nationalists, who invariably end up sitting in Australia or the U.S. NRI's invariably become hyper-Nationalist. Its a phenomenon that im sure has been studied in detail somewhere !!
SF, United States
Jun 08, 2010
11:31 PM
atul --"Let us admit, the English coloniser bound by his own ‘democratic ideals’, civic ethics and education was the least corrosive exploiter. "

Atul I dont agree with your characterization of the english colonizer and his supposed ethics. The statement above is tantamount to 'Stockholm Syndrome' rather than fact. Having to choose between colonizers itself is a problem. It seems if nothing else, the Maoists have kick started upper-class fear and angst (with a cattle-prod).
SF, United States
Jun 09, 2010
05:38 AM
>> how is it that land ceiling was implemented in Kerala? Why is there no Maoist movement there? Under EMS Namboodiripad, the law was so strong that anyone who was a tenant farmer for 12 years, the ownership of the land passed to him without compensation to the owner. >>
Totally agreed, though EMS was a wily old fox, his land reforms genuinely changed the state. Hence you dont have much, rich poor difference in the state.

>> Do you know in Australia and the US now, they say that if any minerals or oil is found in the Reservation areas, that resource belongs to the Aborigines and Native Americans. In India also, the first thing that should be declared is that if minerals are found in the forest, it belongs to the people of that forest. The MOUs should be signed by all the people of that village with that company. >>

Fantastic Idea, totally agreed again. These are possible solution. Arundhati and her Maoist friends offer no solutions (her solution is a Maoist India!!! LMAO)!!! but more problems
Melb, Australia
Jun 09, 2010
09:35 AM
Media is full of news about the Bhopal gas treagedy. Most news-papers has given chronology of happenings after the tragedy. Besides the original crime of such unsafe industrial practice which did take place in collution with the agencies of the state, behabiour of the state in absolving one company & its management of all responsibility is stark demonstration how the the Indian state can go the extra mile to safe-guard the interest of one company , leavings the vicims to their own devices.

In this case the victims went all the way through the process of legal redress & look what they got! Now some hot headed youngmen there may start thinking that the state did not give them justice , on the contrary it went the extra mile to deny juctice, & may mistakenly believe redressal lie elsewhere.
Jun 09, 2010
01:28 PM
Manish and AJT65,

Please do read the entire thing in context and I am sure you will not react the way you have.

At no point am I praising the English or colonialism per se, or have any hankering for the british rule-perish the thought.

I have tried to contextualise the experience of India and the tribal lands as being quite similar. Indians faced colonialism from the English, while the tribal faced colonialism from Indians themselves.

However,when faced with the reality of a 'modern world' many years ahead in development and a desire to catch up, the undeveloped or underdeveloped world (whether colonised or uncolonised) faces a dilemma of chosing its future path and trajectory.

Places like India and many other found that their experience with colonialism provided them some positives too-a break from those traditions and behaviours which would otherwise keep it mired in past as also gave rudimentary apparatus to help in taking a leap into future.

As for 'exploitation'- power game is based on exploitation and any form of governance is exploitative. Amongst them Democracy being the least evil of the lot.

Here the experience of English vis-a vis other colonialists is more encouraging than other colonisers.
Atul Chandra
Jun 09, 2010
01:33 PM
followed from the last post...

Whereas, Maoist experience is totally degrading and frankly without any redeeming factor for human beings. It is purely a militarist construct.

Hope you all would now read the whole piece in entirety and not focus on a single line.
Atul Chandra
Jun 10, 2010
11:04 AM
This Congress Govt. is a lapdog of Uncle Sam, ever ready to oblige them, despite being shown the exit door on Headley issue, or refusing to extradite Anderson. While on "Headley', they finally made him do the parrot talk, on 'Anderson', they are literally saying that it's a closed chapter. In contrast, when it comes to oil spill in their own backyard, they do not hesitate to slap criminal charges against BP Inc., already facing bankruptcy, reeling under PIL's from several quarters.
Cause for the rich and the powerful, the 3rd world poors are
always expendable. No wonder, why some of us take up arms against such gross injustice of state and corporate terrorism.Maoists are just one of those, who just can't digest such injustice and move on.
Shyamal Barua
kolkata, India
Jun 11, 2010
08:52 PM
In the media frenzy, here is one voice of sanity Jawed Naqvi "Why have journalists stopped saying alleged, feared, suspected?"


Forget the elementary discipline of asking questions, how shall we explain a completely concocted story filed by an Indian news agency a day after an event when all the newspapers had already carried a faithful report of the event? The Press Trust of India claimed that writer Arundhati Roy had dared the government to arrest her for she would not give up her support for the Maoists.

Those who attended the meeting in Mumbai, wrote the following letter to the news agency.

“…The PTI report of the speech made by Arundhati Roy in Mumbai at a meeting organised by the CPDR (Committee for the Protection of Democratic Rights) on June 2nd in Mumbai, was in many respects false. The report has ripped sentences and phrases from her presentation and re-arranged them in a way as to completely misrepresent what she said.

“At the meeting Roy went on record to say she was against the killing of innocents and as correctly reported in the Times of India, Mumbai edition, June 3, 2010, that “she was not here to defend killing by any side”. She said that the Maoists were the most militant end of a spectrum of resistance movements all of who are protesting corporate landgrab and that the government deals with all of them with antagonism and repression. Contrary to the PTI report, she did NOT say that “… she will continue to back the Maoists’ armed struggle even if she is put behind bars.” She did NOT call upon the government to put her in jail for supporting Maoists, nor did she offer support to the Maoists. In fact, the Times of India, Mumbai edition, June 3, 2010, reports that she stated that “Maoists have revolutionary methods but not a revolutionary vision” and “their mining policy is not very different from that of the state. They too would mine the bauxite instead of leaving it in the hills, which is what the people they are fighting for want”. The Times further correctly records that she said “We need a vision outside of capitalism as also communism”. Thus, in fact, she posed many serious questions to the Maoists...the most significant part and the real gist of her talk, have been completely and blithely ignored by your staff reporter…”
Varun Garde
Bengaluru, India
Jun 12, 2010
12:20 AM
The best thing about Arundhati Roy is her ability to recognize and distinguish the several finely separated aspects of this highly complex Maoist-Adivasi problem. If her speeches are followed carefully, only the extreme stupid or the extreme reactionary will call her a Maoist. On the question of tribal life and culture, she has a far more deeper point than plain armed conflict and seizing state power. I was baffled how even an academic like Nirmalangshu Mekherji fails to appreciate the subtleness of her viewpoint. Perhaps he is blinded by his own dogma?
Kalobaran Singh
Kolkata, India
Order by
Order by
Order by
Short Takes
recent tags
Lok Sabha Elections
Opinion Polls
Poll Predictions
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra
A. Sanzgiri
Boria Majumdar
Dr Mohammad Taqi
Freya Dasgupta
G. Rajaraman
K.V. Bapa Rao
Maheshwer Peri
Namrata Joshi
News Ed
Omar Ali
Our Readers Write Back
Prarthna Gahilote
Shefalee Vasudev
Sundeep Dougal
recent comments
Cricket World Cup 2011


OUTLOOK TOPICS:    a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9   
Or just type in a few initial letters of a topic: