HinduPost is the voice of Hindus. Support us. Protect Dharma

Will you help us hit our goal?

HinduPost is the voice of Hindus. Support us. Protect Dharma
35.1 C
Varanasi
Wednesday, August 17, 2022
Home Blog

“Why no flats and amenities for us, Mr. Modi?”: Pakistani Hindu refugees

0
Geospatial

Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri today announced on twitter that in a ‘landmark’ decision, the government has decided to shift all Rohingya ‘refugees’ to EWS (Economically Weaker Section) flats in Bakkarwala area of Delhi, where they will be provided basic amenities, UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) IDs and round-the-clock protection by Delhi Police.

Puri went on to add, “Those who made a career out of spreading canards on India’s refugee policy deliberately linking it to #CAA will be disappointed. India respects & follows @UN Refugee Convention 1951 & provides refuge to all, regardless of their race, religion or creed.”

As per reports, it seems that around 1100 Rohingyas living in tents in Madanpur Khadar area of Delhi will be shifted to the EWS flats in Bakkarwala (western Delhi). The decision was reportedly taken after a high-level meeting over the accommodation of Rohingya in the national capital was held. The Delhi government was bearing around Rs 7 lakh per month rent for the tents where Rohingyas are currently living.

The Social Welfare department of the Delhi Government has been ordered to ensure ‘basic facilities’ like a fan, three times meals, landline phone, television and recreational facilities in the new campus for Rohingyas.

The Rohingya crisis has existed for over a decade, but their exodus from Mynamar’s Rakhine region exploded in August 2017 after the jihadi group ARSA started a terror campaign targeting Myanmar border guards, and non-Muslims like Hindus, Buddhists and other indigenous people. Over 100 Hindus were murdered in cold blood by Rohingya Islamists and buried in mass graves, and many women were abducted, forced to convert to Islam and marry Muslim men. Some of the horrific tales can be read here. These events led to a brutal retaliation by the Myanmar Army, driving lakhs of Rohingyans to seek refuge in Bangladesh and Bharat.

As per ‘official’ accounts, 40,000 Rohingyan refugees live across Bharat, half of whom are registered with UNHCR. Ever so often, there are reports of crimes involving Rohingyans and illegal Bangladeshi immigrants. In recent months, authorities have busted criminal gangs working to infiltrate them from our porous eastern border and settle them in the heartland after fraudulently arranging IDs and other documents.

Its not just ordinary Bharatiyas who are against allowing Rohingyas to settle. Bangladesh, which has the highest number of refugees (around 1 million), recently moved many of them to a remote island and is exploring ways to deport them at the earliest. So too are richer Islamic nations like Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. Rohingya refugee camps in both Bangladesh and Bharat have become hubs of criminal activities and radicalism, and sources of increasing conflict with locals.

Pathetic condition of Pakistani and Bangladeshi Hindu refugees living in Bharat

The decision of the government to settle Rohingyans in EWS flats and provided amenities and security has angered many, especially given the squalor and inhuman conditions in which most Pakistani Hindu refugees live in Delhi. This writer has visited the Adarsh Nagar camp and seen first hand how ~ 800 Hindus live in ramshackle tents and huts, without proper electricity, water or sanitation, and under threat of eviction.

One of the main campaign promises of BJP was to enact laws to settle the persecuted Dharmics from our neighborhood’s Islamic nations. And hopes were high when the govt. finally passed the much-awaited CAA law in Dec 2019. But inexplicably, that law has gone into cold storage and laws for its implementation have not been framed.

Of course, the powerful Hinduphobic elements in Bharat’s polity have left no stone unturned to oppose the humanitarian CAA as a ‘communal’ law, and several petitions against it have been lodged in Supreme Court. These same elements, which includes senior lawyers like Rajeev Dhawan and Prashant Bhushan, have flooded petitions in support of Rohingyans and have been entertained on priority basis by our Supreme Court and judges like DY Chandrachud.

Shockingly, when someone approached Delhi High Court to get electricity and water connections for the Pakistani Hindu refugee camp at Adarsh Nagar, the Centre refused to hear the desperate pleas and told the court that the Camps are ‘illegal’ and ‘encroached’ on defence land! Meanwhile, Bangladeshi camps situated next to the rudimentary Hindu settlement reportedly boast of concrete structures, electricity and even air conditioners!

The situation is no different in other camps in Delhi like the Majnu-ka-Tila one.

“We haven’t received any help, not even water and electricity. We feel betrayed. We have no compassion left in us anymore, because nobody has shown compassion to us here. Only a caged bird can feel the pain of being caged,” said Radha Solanki (52), who moved to Bharat from Pakistan nine years ago and lives at Majnu-ka-Tila, while talking to PTI last month.

Conclusion

It is possible that today’s announcement by Hardeep Puri is a measure to ensure that CAA is not struck down by the courts on grounds of ‘unequal treatment of refugees’. On the flip side, now that all these immigrants will be provided UNHCR refugee IDs, it will become that much more difficult to deport them as per due process. There is also some speculation that this decision is the outcome of pressure by UNHCR and US-based anti-Hindu lobby groups.

But one thing is indisputable. The refugee status and amenities that the centre has now declared it will provide to Rohingyans is something that has been denied to Pakistani Hindus. HinduPost spoke to activists Hariom Sahoo and Rana Ranjeet Rai working with Pakistani Hindu refugees in Delhi and Jodhpur respectively, and they were unanimous in saying that the persecuted Hindus would love if similar refugee status is given to them too, while they await the implementation of CAA.

Right now, these Hindus live in a limbo. Many are staying on long-term visas (LTV) or trying to get their pilgrim vias converted to LTV. Those with LTV manage to get certain documentation like Aadhar and PAN and work permits for private jobs, at best. Their children struggle to get admission in government schools. Legal electricity and water connections are denied to their camps.

In many places they are looked upon suspiciously by local authorities and sometimes forcefully deported. But they get minimal benefits from the state, as they are neither citizens nor refugees. Some of them did appeal for refugee status but were refused as government sources told them ‘something big’ (CAA?) is in the works. An online seminar organized by shed light on some of the bureaucratic hassles these refugees face.

One activist we spoke to gave an example of red tape – those who arrived before 2015 can get their LTV extended even if their Pakistani passport has now expired. Others have to first get their Pakistani passport renewed. For this they have to visit the Pakistan High Commission in Delhi and pay a hefty sum, which is usually impossible for poor families struggling to eke out an existence.

The harsh truth is that hundreds of refugees have been forced to return to Pakistan due to uncertainty and impoverished living conditions in Bharat.

So at the bare minimum, if CAA is not going to be implemented anytime soon, the Pakistani Hindu refugees should be granted refugee status and equal treatment as Rohingyans. If the Modi government doesn’t act soon, they risk a serious erosion in the enthusiasm of their cadre as disillusionment is setting in seeing the government go on the backfoot on various issues over the last 2+ years.

One more learning for Hindus is that we need Hindu organizations at all levels, especially religious, to educate the masses on these issues and start putting pressure on the secular state. Mere cultural nationalism is apparently not enough to get the Hindu voice heard in corridors of power.

The antiquity of Ayodhya and its emergence as a world-famous city

0

Ayodhya, one of the ancient cities of Bharat, is among the seven sacred Hindu cities — Mathura, Haridwar, Kashi, Kanchi, Ujjain and Dwarka.

Described in the Artha Veda as the City of God, Ayodhya has been compared to heaven in terms of its prosperity

Situated on the banks of Sarayu river, this city was founded by Vaivasvata Manu Maharaj, son of Vivasvan (Sun), according to Ramayana.

As per the history of Mathura, Vaivasvata Manu was born around 6673 BC. From Brahma’s son Marichi, Kashyap was born; from Kashyap, Vivasvan was born and Vivasvaan’s son was Vaivasvata Manu.

Vaivasvata Manu had 10 sons — Ikshvaku, Kushanama, Arishta, Dhrishta, Narishyanta, Karusha, Mahabali, Sharyati and Prishadha. The Ikshvaku clan itself expanded more with many great kings.

Later in this clan, Bhagwan Shri Ram was born. Ayodhya was ruled by the people of this dynasty till the Mahabharata period. According to mythology, when Manu asked Brahma to build a city for himself, he took him to Vishnu.

Vishnu told him that Saketdham is a suitable place. Vishnu sent Shilpi Vishwakarma along with Brahma and Manu to settle this city.

Apart from this, Maharshi Vasishtha was also sent with him to find a suitable place for his Rama incarnation. It is believed that the land of Leela was selected by Vashistha on the banks of river Saryu, where Vishwakarma built the city.

After Bhagwan Ram, Lava settled Shravasti and its independent mention is found for the next 800 years. It is said that Kush, the son of Bhagwan Ram, got the capital Ayodhya rebuilt. After this, its existence continued for the next 44 generations of Suryavansh.

Ayodhya was ruined after the war of Mahabharata, but even during that period, the existence of Ram Janmabhoomi was safe, which continued till about 14th century.

After several periods of Brihadratha, this city remained under the rulers of Gupta and Kannauj along with the Mauryas of Magadha.

Later, when the kingdom of the Shakas was established in Jaunpur, Ayodhya came under the rule of Sharqis, especially in 1440 AD during the reign of Shak ruler Mahmud Shah.

In 1526 AD, Babur established the Mughal state and his commander invaded here in 1528 and built a mosque, which was demolished in 1992 during the Ram Janmabhoomi movement due to the temple-mosque dispute.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with minor edits to conform to HinduPost style-guide.)

With Aamir tanking, Akshay delivering 3rd dud, Bollywood stares at an abyss

0

After disaster struck the two Independence Day long weekend releases — Aamir Khan’s long-awaited, mega-hyped ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ and the Akshay Kumar-starrer ‘Raksha Bandhan’ — a wag commented that Bollywood has become like the Congress: it has only its past to live on and stares at a dim future, unless a miracle happens.

For Aamir, ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ has been his worst commercially since his 2000 film ‘Mela’, despite getting a five-day holiday weekend, starting with Raksha Bandhan on August 11 and ending with Independence Day. And it has been his second successive flop after the ‘Thugs of Hindostan’, which bombed despite the additional presence of Amitabh Bachchan.

For Akshay Kumar, ‘Raksha Bandhan’ has been his third successive dud — starting with ‘Bachchan Pandey’, which got wiped out by ‘The Kashmir Files’, and ‘Samrat Prithviraj’, despite the film being endorsed by the BJP top brass and made tax-free in three states.

Neither of the two films has been able to recover even a part of the money that went into producing them — and much of this money, in fact, was spent on the fees of their leading stars.

They are also not alone at the bottom of the heap — they were preceded by the ignominious failures of ‘Shamshera’ (Ranbir Kapoor and Sanjay Dutt) and Ranveer Singh’s ‘Jayeshbhai Jordaar’.

It is as clear as daylight that Bollywood stars are not drawing audiences in post-Covid India, whose worldview has been altered by storyline-driven original content streaming on OTT platforms. And for the first time in its history, Bollywood has neither a bankable star, nor a formula that works, not even music, which used to be its USP till not long ago.

At least ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ has had the biggest opening in the overseas market after the other commercial failure, ’83’, and it may just be able to recover some money in China, where Aamir has a big fan following, but ‘Raksha Bandhan’ has sunk without a trace.

In fact, according to the trade media, among the films that have had the highest opening weekends this year, two are pan-India productions — ‘KGF 2’ and ‘RRR’; one is the sleeper hit, ‘The Kashmir Files’; and three are Hollywood releases, ‘Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’, ‘Thor: Love & Thunder’ and ‘Jurassic World Dominion’.

Of the four Bollywood films that made the cut to the above list, ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ (Rs 215 crore) and ‘Gangubai Kathiawadi’ (Rs 153 crore) are the only two to figure among the top 10 grossers of 2022 across languages.

Neither of them has been powered by a superstar. One was led by the rising Kartik Aaryan. The other by a woman, Alia Bhatt — historically, it has not been easy for a female-centric film to do well in India.

Seven of the remaining eight top-grossers (the eighth is ‘The Kashmir Files’) are from the South — ‘KGF 2’, ‘RRR’, the Kamal Haasan magnum opus ‘Vikram’, Kichcha Sudeep’s 3D Kannada movie ‘Vikrant Rona’, Tamil actioner ‘Beast’, Mahesh Babu’s ‘Sarkaru Vaali Paata’ and ‘James’, featuring the late Kannada mega star, Puneeth Rajkumar.

‘Jugjugg Jeeyo’ with Varun Dhawan, Anil Kapoor and Neetu Kapoor is at No. 11 and even No. 12 is from deep down South — the Tamil ‘Valimai’, starring Ajith Kumar and Karthikeya. At least Bollywood can take solace from the fact that it has been produced by Boney Kapoor!

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)

A European explains the difference between neochristian atheism and traditional pagan atheism

0
sharia-europe-democracy-islam-christianity

I make a clear difference between neochristian atheism and traditional pagan atheism.

Neochristian atheism consists in mocking ancestors and Gods with the early-Christian iconoclast anti-idolater paganophobic arguments that led to burn European culture.

Neochristian atheism is not simply the rejection of forced dogmatic beliefs, because paganism itself is of non-dogmatic nature, inclined to various schools, communities, and philosophical paths to follow.

Neochristian atheism is also the rejection of ancestors and the belief (assumed or not) that paganity is inferior to Christianity.

Their propaganda claims that obscurantism was not an organized system typical of the totalitarian Christian religious system, but something natural.

Neochristian atheism is the broomstick of christianity, the dishonest relativization of its crimes.

It’s easy for Christian missionaries on atheist cover to target people who could be interested in paganism, and lead them to think that pagan religions are also totalitarian evil.

Keeping people as atheists allows christianity to get them back far more easily than if they embraced the cause of their ethnocided ancestors, and today Hindus.

There is no return when you acknowledge what Christianity and Islam did to the pagan ancestors in Europe and the world.

Where are the white atheists who defend Hindus against the totalitarian harm of Chrislamism ? I don’t see them.

The fact is there is in most atheist spheres no recognition of the destruction of ancient cultures. The very notion of cultural ethnocide by conversion is wiped out.

Instead, they take the place of pagans with a narrative where they are the true victims of both Christianity and paganism.

They want to be the only victims and make forget the erasure of pagan cultures, so they don’t have to recognize the most destructive aspect of colonization.

Neochristian atheism is a way of avoiding to be held responsible for what colonial religions did, and at the same time keeping the privilege to show a profound disdain against “savage” indigenous pagan cultures they call “obscurantism”. It looks like Christian trolling, really.

Yet obscurantism is what Church did, not the normal nature of mankind.

They erase the obscurantist very special nature of christianity and islam by claiming 𝗮𝗹𝗹 religions are more or less obscurantist.

White atheism is the new cool way to call indigenous cultures “savagery”.

The biggest hinduphobic lies I ever heard from real-life persons were not coming from old-school Christians, but from these white atheists.

They want to believe in black legends about sati, virgin sacrifices, or castes so they can feel superior, more moral, and more intelligent.

Based on my experience and my deepest intimate conviction, neochristian atheism is a neocolonial faith to treat venerable indigenous cultures as savagery.

They say obscurantism instead of savagery, and present christianity as less stupid than any ancestral indigenous religion.

They are attacking me like : “You’re stupid because we never think about Hindus and don’t care about them.”

Nice shot in the foot, for that’s precisely what I’m saying.

They don’t care about Native Rights and only speak about indigenous cultures as savage obscurantist beliefs.

(This article has been compiled from the tweet thread originally tweeted by Yann Meridex (@YannMeridex) on August 14, 2022.)

TMC MLA’s Bengali Film “Dharmajuddha” triggers boycott calls after anti-Hindu trailer release

1
tmc
Source: Screengrab from Trailer

While Bollywood remains infamous for its anti-Hindu stance and is now brought to its knees by awakened Hindus, the Bengali film and entertainment industry continues to grow as the next most hinduphobic industry.

The TMC ideology entirely controls the present entertainment industry of West Bengal. Actors, directors, and producers are part-time politicians in the TMC camp; Mimi Chakraborty, Nusrat Jahan, Soham Chakraborty, infamous for the “condom of Shivalinga” tweet, Saayoni Ghosh have been inducted into the ruling party, and there is no one in the industry that can dare to embrace an ideology opposed to the TMC. Hence the production of films that propagate Hindu hate and presents a contorted view of the Hindu dharma is rampant. 

The latest addition to this trend is the Bengali film Dharmajuddha by filmmaker Raj Chakraborty, TMC MLA from the Barrackpore constituency. The movie created a storm in Bengal before its release for the anti-Hindu elements shown in the film’s trailer. Though the TMC lawmaker claims that he has made this film to convey a message of equality and communal harmony, the trailer betrays his claims. 

In one trailer segment, a Hindu man named Raghav, sporting a saffron scarf, is shown to recite the “yada yada hi dharmasya…” shloka from Bhagwat Geeta while holding a knife to an elderly woman’s throat. Raghav is the name of Bhagwan Ram. The intense hate of the TMC matriarch and her followers towards the existence of Bhagwan Ram is not unknown to Hindus. 

Hence, presenting a man named after Bhagwan Ram as a religious extremist suits the sinister agenda of the Muslim pandering political party. Showing a Hindu reciting a popular Bhagwat Geeta shloka and holding a knife to a woman’s throat is misleading and far from the truth. The truth is that Islamist extremists often recite Islamic verses or the chant of Allah-Hu-Akbar while slaughtering their victims. 

Chakraborty states that he has tried to maintain a balance between the two communities. But creating an equilibrium between the Hindus and the Muslims is a tremendous disservice to Hindu Dharma and Hindus. It is impossible to draw a parallel between the violence of Islamists, a regular feature in Bengal, and the timidness of the Hindus.

Another question is why “Dharmajuddha”? Why not “Jihad”?

After all, the people of Bengal have been repeatedly thrown into the flames of Islamist Jihad. From the Direct Action Day of 1946 to the horrors of partition, the 1971 Bangladesh war, to the post-poll pogrom in 2021, the Hindus have always felt the brunt of Islamist violence and thirst for Hindu blood. Then how fair is it to place the Hindus and Muslims as equal culprits?

The film has triggered an outrage among awakened Hindu Bengalis, who have called for a boycott of the film. Some have taken to YouTube to voice their strong objection to the film. 

The Bengali entertainment industry is known for Aparna Sen, Kaushik Ganguli, Tapas Pal, Badshah Moitra, and Kabir Suman. Often dubbed as “intellectuals,” the artists of Tollywood (as the Bengali film industry is popularly referred to) have repeatedly exposed their fondness for Bangladesh, detestation for Hindu Dharma and Hindu sentiment, and a very passionate sympathy for Muslims as well as Islamists.

Their appeasement of the Islamists has reached such dangerous limits that they comfortably twist ground realities in their movies. They play the real communal horrors the country faces but with a total role reversal by switching Hindu victims to Muslims and showing Islamist attackers as Hindutva goons.

During the anti-Hindu riots in Delhi in 2020, an Islamist mob caught Hindu youth Dilbar Singh Negi, chopped off his limbs, and threw him to fire to be charred alive. The entire sequence was captured in a Bengali OTT series, Charitraheen. But, they projected it as a riotous Hindu mob attacking a Muslim village and performing the exact cruel stunt on Muslim youth.

The OTT audience of West Bengal, consuming this twisted narrative, has evolved into one of the country’s most anti-Hindu and woke demography. If 35 years of communist and ten years of TMC rule was not enough, these OTT shows are turning it into a land barren of dharma.

US bill to allow parents to sue social media over child addiction fails

0

California lawmakers have rejected a much-anticipated bill allowing parents to sue social media platforms over their addictive features for kids has failed in the legislature.

The Social Media Platform Duty to Children Act (AB 2408) failed to pass out of committee for a full state Senate vote, reports Miami Herald.

The bill would have let local prosecutors sue social media platforms for up to $250,000 per violation for knowingly using tools that can make children addicted to their products.

“As we’ve said from the start, protecting children online is a priority but must be done responsibly and effectively,” Dylan Hoffman, executive director for California and the Southwest of TechNet was quoted as saying.

“We’re glad to see that this bill won’t move forward in its current form. If it had, companies would’ve been punished for simply having a platform that kids can access,” Hoffman said in the report that came out on Friday.

Supporters said that such rules are necessary to protect children from companies who turn a blind eye to the harm caused to their mental health by social media addiction.

The Bill applied to social networks that generate less than $100 million annually or are primarily intended for video games.

“I am extremely disappointed. The bill’s death means a handful of social media companies will be able to continue their experiment on millions of California kids, causing generational harm,” said bill author Jordan Cunningham.

The demise of the bill comes at a time when US President Joe Biden has called for new child safety protections online.

Critics of the bill argued that it would have pushed services toward privacy-threatening age verification.

“It hurts the kids by depriving them of valuable social outlets and educational resources,” according to Internet policy expert Eric Goldman.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed.)

Assam’s bards of freedom gave a voice to nationalist aspirations

0
assam literature
Image: IANS

The 1920s to 1940s was a period when a large number of songs, poems and lyrics were composed in Assam as part of the freedom movement. These in turn worked as an inspiration during the freedom movement and had an electrifying effect on the masses during the freedom struggle.

“O Mur Apunar Desh”, written by Lakshminath Bezbarua (1868-1938) and tuned by Kamala Prasad Agarwala, is the state song of Assam. It was officially adopted as the state song at the Assam Student Conference held in Tezpur in 1927.

The song was first published in 1909 in an Assamese magazine named Baahi (Flute).

Though his father Dinanath Bezbarua was a senior official with the British government, Bezbarua devoted himself to revive the lost glory of the Assamese language and literature and dominated the Assamese literary world for about half a century.

Fighting against his contemporary writers, his literary and cultural crusade was aimed at the overall development of Assamese society.

According to Guwahati-based journalist Samudra Gupta Kashyap, the twentieth century saw an upsurge in literary activities related to the freedom movement in Assam.

He said that the earliest recorded song is from 1916, when Ambikagiri Raichoudhury (Assam Kesari) composed a song, sung as the opening chorus, at the annual conference of the Assam Association, which was the first political platform of the province which became the provincial Congress in 1921.

In 1917, Raichoudhury wrote and sang, E-je agnibeenar taan (Tune of the veena of fire), at the Assam Association conference at Barpeta, in which he said, “This is not a song of laughter, mirth and relaxation. This is a tune of the veena of fire which has made life and death one.”

Due to the immense influence of Raichoudhury’s songs across Assam, the British government confiscated his book ‘Shatadha’ in 1924 because of its strong revolutionary content, said Kashyap.

In 1921, when Mahatma Gandhi made his first visit to Assam, Raichoudhury and Karmavir Nabin Chandra Bordoloi spent a session with him to explain in detail how a number of songs composed by the two were spreading the message of freedom and non-violence in the province for several years.

In 1926, the 41st session of the Indian National Congress opened with a chorus, “Aji bando ki chandare/samagata virata/naranarayana roopa” (How do we welcome you, this supreme incarnation of humanity? We’re a humiliated and dependent lot with a shrinking mind and heart/We have no flowers, sandalwood paste and incense sticks / With our voice, strangulated by shackles of slavery/ We can’t produce a melody…) composed by Raichoudhury.

According to Kashyap, Bishnu Prasad Rabha (1909-1969) was another great cultural icon who is fondly referred to as Kalaguru, whose poems and lyrics too had an electrifying effect on the masses of Assam during the freedom struggle.

He said in neighbouring Manipur, the most important popular piece of literary work that continues to instil a sense of patriotism among the people is ‘Khongjom Parva’, a traditional ballad originally composed orally by Leinou.

He was a washerman who happened to be a witness to the Battle of Khongjom, one of the most significant incidents of the Anglo-Manipuri War of 1891, in which several hundred brave Manipuris laid down their lives. Leinou recorded the bravery and patriotism of the Manipuri soldiers in his orally-composed ballad which came to be known as ‘Khongjom Parva.’

A musical narration, ‘Khongjom Parva’ has over the years expanded its scope to include stories about other legendary Manipuri characters, as also some from the Mahabharata.

This was how the message of the resistance against the British had spread in Assam, through oral poetry as early as in the 1830s.

The British had started occupying the present-day northeast since the Treaty of Yandabo, signed with the Burmese invaders in 1826. Prior to that, the Burmese had invaded Assam and Manipur thrice, in 1817, 1819 and 1821, and occupied both which were then independent countries.

The British, who had entered Assam with a promise of going back after flushing out the Burmese, however stayed on after discovering tea and petroleum.

When Maniram Dewan, Assam’s greatest hero of 1857, was hanged in February, 1858, the effect of folk songs and ballads was so strong that people continued to sing them, making them inseparable from the freedom movement which grew more intense with every passing year.

In the post-independence era, Bhupen Hazarika had sung a portion of that ballad in ‘Maniram Dewan’, an Assamese film of 1963, said Kashyap.

Folk songs of various genres spread the news far and wide, and freedom loving and patriotic people began singing about their heroic deeds and sacrifice.

A sizeable number of these songs and poems were lost in time due to non-documentation when people who had composed and sung them were alive. A few, some in bits and pieces, however have been collected and preserved by a couple of scholars, Kashyap stated in one of his articles.

According to the writings of Sahitya Akademi award winner Late Biswanarayan Shastri the dramatists Satyaprasad Barua, Prabin Phukan and a few others have convincingly dealt with the socio-economic problems in a Gandhian way to usher in a new society.

“Gandhian thoughts have been analysed in a few works in Assamese. Gandhivad by Bijay Ch. Bhagwati is one of them. During the Chinese aggression there was an outburst of writings in the shape of drama, poems and songs, wherein the litterateurs appealed to the patriotic sentiment of the people,” Shastri said in an article.

He wrote: “Poems ‘Mor Desh Manuhara Desh’ by Devkanta Barooa and poems by others created a new atmosphere. Patriotic songs by Bhupen Hazarika were on the lips of all young men and women. They sang of unity of the people and oneness of purpose.”

“Harijan Andolan started by Gandhiji. During this period a number of social dramas were produced of which Lahanga, Viplava, etc. by Daibachandra Talukdar, may be mentioned,” Shastri said in his book “Nationalism and Patriotism In Assamese Literature”.

According to Shastri, young people from Assam proceeded to Calcutta for higher education, a few of them even before the establishment of Calcutta University. They studied English and Bengali literature in depth and imbibed the spirit of patriotism.

Anandram Dhekial Phukan (1829-59) was the pioneer in Assamese literature. He had his education in Calcutta before Calcutta University was established. He was the Rammohun Roy of Assam.

He was paid a warm tribute by Colonel Hopkinson, the then Chief Commissioner of Assam, who said: “Considering the peculiar circumstances of Assam in which Anandram was placed and his premature death at the age 30 one is bound to call him a greater genius than Raja Rammohun Roy.”

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed)

FSSAI assures action against hanging of toilet brushes over pizza dough at Domino’s outlet in B’luru

0
Domino's
Image: IANS

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) on Tuesday took cognisance of hanging of toilet brushes over pizza dough at a Domino’s outlet in Bengaluru.

The apex food regulator under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said on Tuesday that the response of the FBO has been sought and appropriate action shall be taken in the matter as per the regulatory provisions under the FSS Act, 2006.

On July 24, a person named Sahil Karnany had tweeted some pictures, which showed toilet brushes hanging over pizza dough at a Domino’s outlet in Bengaluru.

“This is how Domino’s India serves us fresh pizza! Very disgusted,” he wrote.

Karnany had also tagged FSSAI, Karnataka Health Minister K. Sudhakar and Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandviya in the post.

On Sunday, Karnany again posted a video showing toilet brushes, clothes used for cleaning tables hanging over pizza dough.

As his posts went viral on social media, Domino’s issued a statement saying strict action has been initiated against the management of the outlet.

The company also said that it adheres to international standards to ensure quality of food and hygiene.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed)

How China preserved Bharat’s cultural brilliance in Far history (Part 1)

0
Bharat China relations

Father, Prof. Raghu Vira, studied Chinese at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, in 1928. He was impressed by the beauty and complexity of Chinese characters. He came from a background of Sanskrit philosophy and grammar. The Sanskrit grammar of Panini is very intricate. Father saw Panini in the complex visual forms of Chinese ideograms. At the same time, back home, Bharat was seeking new dimensions to her freedom movement in terms of what would be the nature of the independent State.

China, Japan and other countries of East Asia were independent. One of the attraction points for father was to understand as to how Chinese civilization had been able to sustain her independence over five thousand years, as well as maintain her cultural identity. He was fond of chinoiserie and our home was overflowing with Chinese paintings, books and other objects.

I started learning Chinese characters in 1937 at the age of ten. I asked my father: where are the consonants and vowels in them? There are no letters like A, B, C, D? How do the Chinese read? Father had a book on the Chinese script by Karlgren titled Sounds and Symbols in Chinese published by the Oxford University press in 1929. It is a fascinating account of how the Chinese characters have evolved.

It shows how early pictographs were sophisticated into manifold characters: sometimes on the basis of phonetics and sometimes by putting two characters together, e.g. sun and moon for bright. Chinese language is not only complex but it is a mirror of their thinking processes. The addition of elucidative classifiers was great fun for me. The syllable shan means mountain as well as shirt. To surmount the difficulty a classifier is added: tso ‘site’ in i tso shan ‘one site mountain’ means a mountain, while kien ‘article of dress’ in i kien shan ‘one article shirt’ means a shirt. The simplicity of Chinese grammar and the absence of an involved syntactic structure are characteristic.

Father said it was not sufficient to study only Chinese characters to learn the language but it was important to practise Chinese calligraphy. Chinese calligraphy fascinated me. All other languages are written either with a pen or a pencil, but Chinese is calligraphed with a brush. It has its own aesthetic value. Chinese calligraphy gave me an insight into their aesthetics. When father visited China in 1955, Premier Chou Enlai gave him a brush. It was a gift from Chairman Mao Tsetung, with a poem of Chairman Mao sketched on it.

Ours was the only Bharatiya home lined with Chinese printed texts and rare woodprints. The wood-printed books were different from Bharatiya books. Their binding style was pleasing, the print was clear and the paper was light. It had a feel different from the normal paper that we used. The texture of the paper showed that Chinese are a different people, a people who had treasured their classical identity both in the style of binding and in the manufacture of paper. They adored the perfume of their culture. Culture brings beauty to life; it is the aesthetics of life.

Sacred land and Sutras

Father asked me to read Chinese writings on Bharat. The first book that I read was the travel account of Fa-hsien who came to Bharat in 400 AD. Thereafter I read the other two Chinese pilgrims Hsuan-tsang and I-tsing in English and later on in Chinese. It was interesting to feel the devotion extraordinary of Chinese pilgrims to Bharat. Despite having a developed language and a rich culture, they sought fine arts and philosophic thought in Bharat. They wanted a cultural enrichment of hearts, minds, and aesthesis as a euphoric evolution of their mighty state. China has been the only continuous ‘nation state’ in the world for the last five thousand years, both conceptually and politically.

Moreover, it is a rare phenomenon that the Chinese have documented their history for these five thousand years in the Twenty-four Dynastic Annals till 1911. The contrast between Bharat as a cultural entity with several kingdoms and China with more or less a single state conceptually is important to perceive the Chinese mindset. The Chinese historical tradition has lessons for us.

About 3000 texts were translated from Sanskrit into Chinese from the 2nd to the 13th century. They are collected in the Chinese Tripitaka. Many of them have been lost in Sanskrit originals and so they are unique for Bharatiya history. As a historian of Bharat’s culture, father was fascinated by what he found in Chinese, as their Sanskrit originals had been lost. For him Chinese was a rich source on Bharatiya art and thought, literature and history. About 250 Bharatiya teachers went to China from the 2nd to the 13th century, till Islam conquered Central Asia when Buddhist monasteries were destroyed and the pilgrim route died down. He was curious to see how Chinese had preserved all these texts for such a long period of time. Bharat’s archaeology would not be complete without Hsuan-tsang. When Alexander Cunningham mapped the archaeological sites in Bharat in the 19th century, his patron saint scholar was Hsuan-tsang. Likewise Aurel Stein was also guided by Hsuan-tsang in his archaeological expeditions to Central Asia.

Tagore went to China in the 1920s and was welcomed enthusiastically. Father was influenced by him and knew him personally. Sporadic correspondence was exchanged between them. Poet Tagore established the Cheena Bhavan at Shantiniketan and Chinese studies were initiated in Bharat for the first time. Father collaborated with Poet Tagore to found the Bharat-China Friendship Association.

Chinese poems and sketches of Ahimsa

Monk Feng Tzukai, a friend Of Chairman Mao, wrote poems and drew pictures on Ahimsa. Father translated its first volume in English. Feng Tzukai was a Buddhist monk, calligrapher and artist. A Chinese scholar did his doctorate thesis on his art some decades ago.

Ahimsa was a central concept in our freedom struggle. Gandhiji was impressed by this book and that the Chinese also believe in Ahimsa. Father wanted to strengthen Sino-Bharatiya friendship on a cultural footing that could absorb the shocks of political misunderstandings. Gaps of communication could be tided over by such an approach and could generate an ambience that allows us to see beyond parochial politics.

Multiple identities operate in different domains of life. These poems were written in the context of Buddhism. The Chinese have a Confucian identity, enriched by a Buddhist identity. Their nonviolence is kindness to animals on special days. The vast Buddhist population of China is keen for pilgrimage to the Land of Lord Buddha. China always had a special place of respect in the minds of Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Nehru as a great country, a neighbour and a cultural comrade. Father was a rare Bharatiya who had studied the language and culture of China. The sinological expertise of father brought him respect at the national level. Mahatma Gandhi. Pt. Nehru and other leaders were thrilled by his narration of the fine details of Bharat’s contacts with Chinese culture.

Three Monkeys of Mahatma Gandhi

Mahatma Gandhi had Japanese monks at his Ashram at Wardha. They were reciting the Chinese text of the Lotus Sutra or Saddharma-pundarika-sutra.

Gandhiji wanted to know its Sanskrit original and English translation for which he invited father to Wardha. Father gave him both the Sanskrit original and its English translation. Gandhiji was happy to know that the Chinese had translated thousands of texts, and that too with devotion. Gandhiji had a long conversation with father, including the three monkeys on his table. The monkeys are sacred to Buddhism, as a monkey had made an offering to the Buddha and as a consequence he has reborn as the Great King Asoka. An offering mentioned in the Buddhist texts became so prominent in the culture of East Asia that the Three Monkeys found a place on the table of Mahatma Gandhi.

Ramayana in China via Samarkand

Father translated a brief version of the Ramayana from Chinese into English. It had been translated into Chinese from the Sanskrit Sat-paramita-sutra on the six perfections by monk K’ang Seng-hui of Samarkand in AD 251. Sanskrit was a language of international commerce and intellectual expression in Central Asia with which China had active Contacts. During the struggle against British imperialism. Bharatiya scholarship thought of the global contacts of the country and father found Chinese studies a valuable tool to comprehend the international role of Bharat in antiquity. Samarkand was an important centre for Bharat-China exchanges.

People in Samarkand knew both Sanskrit and Chinese. The Buddhist monk-scholars of Samarkand translated several texts from Sanskrit into Chinese. Central Asian monks from other kingdoms also contributed to the spread of Indic traditions to China, because of their trade relations_ The horses Of Ferghana were sent for the Chinese cavalry. Buddhist monks came on these horses. Central Asian monks were expert horsemen. They knew to train them, to treat them if injured or ill. They became crucial to the Chinese defence system.

In 1983, I went to see the monastery where K’ang Seng-hui lived and wrote. The ancient monastic structure does not exist, but a new monastery has been constructed at the site to pay homage to him and to the long tradition of translating Buddhist Sutras.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with a modified headline and minor edits to conform to HinduPost style guide)

China rattled as Pakistan moves closer to US

0
pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif

Will China-Pakistan ties get somewhat strained as Pakistan under the Shehbaz Sharif government is now actively making an all-out effort to boost relations with the US? China’s concerns are rising as Islamabad intensifies its dialogues with Washington, the largest shareholder of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Pakistan is expecting the IMF to extend a bailout package by the end of this month.

Pakistan’s military chief, Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa has sought the US’ support in securing the IMF loan. In fact, Bajwa, last week even spoke to Deputy US Secretary of State Wendy Sherman on the issue. Not just that. Within days of taking charge as Pakistan’s Finance Minister, Miftah Ismail paid an official visit to Washington.

If the reports about Pakistan asking help from Washington are true, it raises concerns that the US might take the opportunity to exert political pressure on Pakistan, Beijing based news organisation Global Times said. “For a long time, the US and its allies have been intensifying political pressuring on developing countries like Pakistan, causing a new economic dilemma for them,” it added.

The IMF, among its many demands, asked Pakistan to renegotiate the deals under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). According to reports, the multilateral lender has also asked Pakistan not to borrow more from China.

“It is important to note which way the country’s military is tilted, what position Bajwa holds is more critical for any decision of these kinds,” Abhijnan Rej, researcher and consultant focusing on Asian security and geopolitics told India Narrative.

Rej also said that the going between China and Pakistan has not been “very smooth” in the recent past. “Though openly, the two have been reiterating their commitments to support each other, things are not the same as they were in the past,” Rej said, adding that the delay in the execution of the CPEC project has also led to straining of ties.

Pakistan, which has been placed on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) grey list in June 2018, is also trying to get out of it. An independent think tank in Pakistan Tabadlab earlier estimated an economic loss of a whopping $38 billion for the country on account of the FATF grey list.

Pakistan also provides a platform to the US to make a comeback in the region after its messy exit from Afghanistan a year ago.

A detailed report published by India Narrative on August 9 noted that from a geopolitical perspective, the Americans have been virtually thrown out of Central Asia, creating a power vacuum which regional powers are jostling to fill. “Washington is now attempting to claw back a foothold in AfPak, presumably with the active support of Pakistan, their old partners in crime,” the report said.

Under Pakistan’s former prime minister Imran Khan, ties with Washington had nosedived as his sole focus was on China. But the cash strapped South Asian nation is now aggressively trying to mend relations with the US.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed)