Andhra Pradesh: Christian chief minister favours Christians – Sudha Mohan Mylavarapu

Jaganmohan Reddy

PGURUSTime is running out fast for Hindus. If the conversion trend continues, similar to North-Eastern states there will not be any Hindus left in Andhra in coming years. The plight of Hindus in Kerala and Tamil Nadu is horrible. We have witnessed many attacks on Hindus and Hinduism in all these states. –  Sudha Mohan Mylavarapu

Andhra administration seems to be working hand in glove with Christian missionaries. Visakhapatnam’s police commissioner Rajiv Kumar Meena issued a memorandum to the city police to protect minority Christians and their churches from Hindu aggression. As per Vizag’s city police website, the commissioner took charge on 27th June 2019 and this memorandum was issued on 4th July 2019. Commissioner did not waste any time issuing the orders to protect the Christians. The person who requested protection seems to have close links with the Andhra Christian chief minister Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy.

All over Andhra, Hindus are under attack. Except in rare circumstances mostly aggressors and provokers are from so-called “minority” community. When Hindus retaliate in desperation,[1] Christians play the victim card and use the mighty power of the administration to muzzle the voice of Hindus. One such example is Shivaji, a Hindu activist from Shiva Shakti organisation was arrested In Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh. He was arrested for sending WhatsApp messages which are alerting Hindus from the lies peddled by other religions. After the arrest, Andhra police have declined to give answers to the public and booked him on charges related to WhatsApp messages. Police are also blocking and not answering phone calls. Is the Andhra administration following traditional Christian methods to oppress or discourage Hindu voices? Shiva Shakti Shivaji’s arrest in Kurnool is an indication of the attitude of the police. As per the above memorandum, this is likely to repeat in Visakhapatnam and other places in Andhra too.

In Andhra, during Y.S. Raja Sekhar Reddy’s rule, several evangelists tried to proselytize in some of the famous Hindu temples such as Tirumala. After protests from the Hindu society, the administration issued orders restricting evangelical activities near-certain temples.

There are many grey areas in this GO; there is no mention of how far a distance from the Hindu temples such evangelical activities are restricted and why only a few temples? Is this GO indirectly saying that the government is allowing the Christians to preach near the Hindu temples which are not mentioned in this list? Why not a blanket ban? Did the government punish the guilty Christians ever? May be government or the police don’t have the evidence. Social media is full of such evidences. In this video we can clearly see how these missionaries are trying to proselytize near a temple near Visakhapatnam.

Andhra was known to divert Hindu endowment funds to the government’s common good funds. Endowment department is making thousands of crores or rupees every year.[2][3] Despite having huge sums of money, many Hindu temples are in a very bad state. Many archakas are struggling to make a living.[4] On the other hand, the Christian preachers and Islamic mullahs are getting huge sums of money from abroad[5] via FCRA and FDI, and their communities are also paying them well (Dasama Bhagam, i.e. 1/10 th of their earnings are donated to church or mosque). Super secular Abrahamised Government is sucking all Hindu temple money and have not dared to touch Islamic and Christian funds.

As per the news on Telugu MSM, Andhra govt announced salaries to imams (Rs-10,000), pastors (Rs 5,000). It makes sense to pay salaries to archakas because the government is making huge sums of money from temples. One would wonder on what basis does the Christian ruler of Andhra gives state sponsored salaries to pastors and mullahs? There are many farmers committing suicide, the government has no love for these hard-working farmers! Where is the money coming from to pay these salaries? Is the government using Hindu temple money for their schemes? Is this for electoral gains? Or is Andhra chief minister openly supporting the aggressive racket to convert all Hindus? It is time all Hindus must demand separation of temples from the state’s clutches.

Andhra government came up with a scheme of appointing several hundred village volunteers.[6] It is being alleged that many of these appointees are Christians and also YSR party members. Their recruitment is in the final stages now. God only knows the real reason why these are appointed, maybe it is for converting Hindus at village level?

Christian missionaries are notorious in using the administrative power to convert the indigenous populations across the world. History filled with many instances and evidences to prove the destruction of indigenous cultures and religions. Christian missionaries use the money power or the administrative power for conversion. One such best living example is persecution of Canadian indigenous population.[7] By doing such heinous acts the Church grew to become the world’s strongest political institution under the garb of spirituality.

In British Raj, when East India company put restrictions on missionary work in India, missionaries used Sati propaganda to enter into India on the pretext to civilize barbaric Hindus.[8] The same missionaries turned a blind eye to the persecution of their women on the name of the witch hunt. Approximately 9 million women in Europe were murdered, with the support of the church.[9]

AP Temple Land Grab

From the past couple of hundred years, Christianity is spreading in India like water under the carpet. Officially India’s Christian population stays between 2-3%, unofficially it is approximately 20-30% of India’s population. In many states Hindus are minorities.

Historically Christians and Islamists are abusing Hindu goodwill. There are many evidences to prove their aggression. Above video is one best example of how Christians are violating Hindu hospitality. Doesn’t the constitution put reasonable restrictions on all fundamental rights? There are thousands of Hindu temples across India where Christians are openly trying to preach and convert Hindus by saying Hindus are devil worshippers.

As per the Constitution, every religion has the right to propagate, but there are restrictions to all fundamental rights. In the process of conversions Christians claim, “by doing idolatry a Hindu will go to hell and burn” and, they equate Hindu gods to demons. This is clear blasphemy. This blasphemy is happening on a large scale in Andhra and in India, but the authorities turn a blind eye. When Hindus confront these preachers with questions, then Christians use the power of administration to silence those who confronted the proselytization.

Time is running out fast for Hindus. If this trend continues, similar to North-Eastern states there will not be any Hindu left in Andhra in coming years. Hindus plight in Kerala and Tamil Nadu is horrible. Christianity is in control of these two states. We have all witnessed many attacks on Hinduism and Hindus in both these states. A good example is Sabarimala and how the communist government of Kerala was played by the church to destroy the holiness of Sabarimala.

The orders issued by the Andhra police is an indication of the Chief Minister’s Christians and Muslim appeasement mentality. He seemed to have forgotten that all Hindus voted him to power in good faith. The administration’s actions are very disappointing and unethical. They are trying to protect the aggressors and punishing the innocent who are struggling for existence from the oppressions. Hindus of Andhra must question this biased attitude of Andhra Government. If this does not change, by the end of the tenure of this government, about 50% of Andhra will slip into the spell of Christianity. – PGurus, 22 July 2019

AP Police Order

References:

[1] www.shivshakti.org

[2] Andhra Pradesh Temple Loot

[3] Hindu temple in India receives record one-day donations

[4] 1 lakh archaka families struggle for livelihood

[5] Govt bans foreign funding for 69 NGOs, 30 of them work for minorities

[6] Notification issued for village volunteers recruitment in AP

[7] Systemic oppression of Indigenous peoples is no reason for celebration

[8] The Sati Strategy: How Missionaries Used An Extinct Practice As A Rallying Point To Christianise India

[9] Witch Hunts and the Christian Mentality


 

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Defaming the ‘Jai Shri Ram’ salutation – Arihant Pawariya

Ram Temple Rally

Arihant PawariyaWith so much vilification of Hindus going on, they will naturally gravitate towards a slightly pro-Hindu party despite all its flaws rather than voting for Congress and regional caste-based parties which are ideological fellow travellers of the mullah-Marxist-missionary-media mafia. – Arihant Pawariya

The latest attempt by the mullah-Marxist-media network to defame and denigrate the harmless, age-old, countryside greeting of “Jai Shri Ram” has disaster written all over it.

The M4 (add missionaries to the mix as well) gang’s penchant for constantly needling the country’s silent majority in order to achieve their political and ideological goals is known all too well. When in power, they become a well-oiled part of the state machinery to further their agenda. And when down and out electorally, the establishment they created while being in power comes to the rescue and serves their nefarious designs.

In the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA’s) first term, it all started with the M4 gang raising a hue and cry over so-called church attacks followed by weaving of the fake “rising intolerance” narrative which in turn was followed by award wapsi. When none of this worked, they got down to sketch the lynchistan portrait based on a handful of stray incidents of thrashing of cattle thieves in a country of more than 130 crore people. The latter was—and still is—a sinister endeavour to separate Hindus from the cow, or of their sacred entities. Another aim of this move was to bury the real issue of cattle smuggling and their illegal slaughter carried out by members of the country’s largest minority.

Those who thought that this gang would mellow down after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) returned with an even bigger mandate than last time have got a rude awakening. The “saffronistas” had hardly got the time to digest ladoos of celebration that the media started bombarding audiences with “Muslim beaten up, forced to say Jai Shri Ram” headlines. The sudden rise in such incidents was too convenient to be true. A Muslim youth in Telangana’s Karimnagar claimed he was beaten up by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and BJP workers for not chanting Jai Shri Ram. It turned out to be fake. Similarly, such fake claims in Unnao, Cooch Bihar, Kanpur, Baghpat, Chandauli, (two in) Aurangabad have been busted so far.

Rather than retreating, the M4 complex is doubling down. If last time, cow was the chief target, for this term, they have trained their guns on Shri Ram. Of course, it goes without saying that the results of their shenanigans won’t be any different either.

First, the most obvious and immediate impact will be on politics. It will lead to further polarisation in society along religious lines. It is now an understood reality of India’s present electoral scenario that polarisation along religious lines helps the BJP and along caste lines aids the Congress party and regional outfits. While it helps the saffron party politically, it also means that the BJP doesn’t need to deliver for its Hindutva base at all because the M4 gang is doing their job for them.

With so much vilification of Hindus going on, they will naturally gravitate towards a slightly pro-Hindu party despite all its limitations and flaws rather than voting for Congress and regional caste-based parties which are ideological fellow travellers or electoral allies of the M4 gang. When the choice is between those who are hell bent on proving Hindus as terrorists and those who are promising Ram temple (but may not deliver), it’s a no contest.

Second, when the media is too busy focusing on polarising the society through dubious reporting, real issues take a backseat. The party in power will become laid-back in tackling unemployment, lack of growth, farm distress, poor education and skills, etc when it knows that it has the election sewed up. Rather than indulging in whipping up hysteria, the fourth estate should go back to basics of journalism and try to inform the electorate rather than play activists.

Third, it will have a catastrophic impact on the Indian society and nation. The M4 gang is trying to conjure up fear of the majority in the minority community by selective highlighting of one type of cases and creating mountains out of molehills, it is natural that the biggest minority, which already suffers from siege mentality and let no opportunity go waste of playing victimhood, won’t sit back.

As we saw in Ranchi earlier this month, it will try to intimidate the state and the majority community by the power of mobs, and it won’t be pretty. The majority won’t like it one bit because their demonisation by the M4 gang is based on nothing but imaginary fear. The very people who never get tired of criticising the BJP for tearing the social fabric apart are the ones who are guilty of doing exactly that.

Fourth, the M4 gang is egging the minority community to play victimhood. “Dara hua Musalman” chronicles and frenzy around these selective cases is incentivising anti-social and mischievous elements to cook up fake stories as we have seen recently with so many “forced to say Jai Shri Ram” allegations getting busted throughout the country.

This further creates distrust of the minority community among other members of society and strengthens the perception of it being dishonest and devious leading to its alienation. Additionally, Muslims should think twice before playing into the hands of the M4 gang because they don’t want to be branded as “a community which cries wolf”— saying there is a problem when there is not—because no one will believe them when they actually have a problem at their hands. Nothing can be more sad because real victims will be the worst affected.

Fifth, of course this hurts the Hindu community as well which is the main aim. As noted earlier, just like they tried to do with the cow, the M4 gang is trying to separate Shri Ram from Hindus by defaming the harmless greeting as some sort of a “war cry” equivalent to Allahu Akbar which is seen today by non-Muslims as a sort of warning before someone is being attacked rather than a simple “god is great” statement. This is being attempted with Jai Shri Ram slogan as well.

And it doesn’t matter whether the narrative is manufactured or not because the audience of the M4 gang is not the crores of devout Hindus but a certain section of the majority community, the deracinated elite who can be easily guilt-tripped into spitting at their own heritage. If this influential bunch can be influenced to crack lame jokes at Shri Ram at stand-up comedy clubs (see the number of cow jokes they use in their material), their job is done. Denigrating the lord, who is an idol to millions and worshipped as mortal personification of righteousness on earth, is no mean achievement.

Clearly, the M4 gang has more upsides than downsides in continuing with their propaganda. Given this nexus, and their subscribers are a tiny minority, they are punching way above their weight. But when has winning wars been about numbers? It’s the strategy, stupid! – Swarajya, 31 July 2019

Arihant Pawariya is a senior editor at Swarajya

Jai Shri Ram T-shirt

Tamil Nadu a hotbed for Christian evangelists – Swarajya Standard

Mohan C. Lazarus, Ezra Sargunam, Jegath Gaspar

Swarajya MagazineThe Church has engaged in creating and propagating a false history that combines Dravidian racism with evangelical Christianity. And believe us, there are quite a few around today who deal in exactly this kind of business—which is, unfortunately, a threat to ordinary Tamil life and society. – Swarajya Standard

Anyone who has met with evangelicals knows they are quite eager to spread their faith—that is just what they do.

But in certain states in India, their eagerness crosses a line. Perhaps several lines.

In this episode of Swarajya Standard, we look at the one state where evangelical organisations have grown to wield enormous political clout over the years—Tamil Nadu.

Chith Bhavananda, the famous educationist seer of Tamil Nadu, had recorded an interesting confession once by a Madurai Bishop: it said that the Dravidian movement was a time bomb set by the Church to destroy Hinduism.

Though dramatic, this sentiment has played out a number of times in Tamil Nadu.

The Church has engaged in creating and propagating a false history that combines Dravidian racism with evangelical Christianity. And believe us, there are quite a few around today who deal in exactly this kind of business—which is, unfortunately, a threat to ordinary Tamil life and society.

Let’s shine a light on three people in particular.

First, Bishop Ezra Sargunam.

Just listen to what he has to say.

He is essentially saying there is no such thing as Hindu religion and that those who call themselves Hindus need to be thrashed into senses—obviously, in his view, to accept the truth of Christianity.

And this guy is no fringe. He is an influential customer with ties to the Dravidian ruling establishment—brokering political alliances and the like. And, it seems, very comfortable with advocating violence.

When in the 1960s Sargunam was at the Kumbh to proselytise, Hindu devotees at the time had chased him away – angered by his reference to Hindu gods as Satan.

Now, he likes to claim that he has converted a crore Tamil Hindus and planted half a million churches across the state. Maybe true—but a dangerous idea even to think about it.

What else would you expect from someone who was trained by Billy Graham, that famous American pastor who was also incredibly influential in the US – despite his antisemitism and opposition to the teaching of evolution.

Anyway, let’s move on to our next crank candidate. Meet Father Jegath Gaspar Raj.

This so-called reverend is a Catholic priest who rose to prominence under the previous DMK rule. A veritable Rasputin of the DMK reich, Gaspar tried to secularize Hindu folk traditions. So that they could later be Christianised through minority educational institutions subsidised by a secular government.

He also ran a publication propagating the works of so-called scholar Ma. Se. Victor, who claims that Tamil was the language of Adam, spoken by all of humanity before the Tower of Babel was destroyed by God.

Such crank theories are kept in incubation to take over the Dravidian narrative, and they find forced advocacy under the DMK regime.

So when DMK gets supported by bishops, there is more than just vote-bank politics and ground-level bargaining of concessions going on. There is ideological vested interest in the form of promoting a racist Dravidian ideology against Hinduism and Hindus.

So let’s cap off this [article] with the third person on our list.

One Mr Mohan C. Lazarus. He is a controversial Christian preacher who runs an evangelical empire in Tamil Nadu. Widely perceived as a fundamentalist and a fanatical zealot, he too enjoys close links to the allegedly rational political establishment of the state.

Lazarus was born in a pious and wealthy Tamil Hindu family. He claims that when “money consuming diverse medical treatment” failed to heal his bulging heart, and he was on the death bed, “the Lord sent one of his vessels to counter his eternally chosen tool to bring him unto his fold”. Thus Murugan morphed into Mohan Lazarus.

Lazarus is believed to have had a key role in the anti-Sterlite protests in Thoothukudi.

He governs a vast empire, from his headquarters at Nalumavadi, a place strategically situated near the ancient and famous Hindu pilgrim centre, Thiruchendur. He is often explicitly political in his message. He shares the stage with top leaders of Dravidian parties like M.K. Stalin. He seems to aim for an evangelical coalition-controlled polity in Tamil Nadu.

Once in a controversial statement he said that Tamil Nadu is the stronghold of Satan, referring to a large number of temples in the state. The video went viral on social media. Take a look:

So for people like Mohan Lazarus, the presence of temples in Tamil Nadu is akin to having Satan strongholds.

And these are exactly the kind of evangelicals Tamil Nadu should worry about. Because they have no qualms about spreading the word of Christianity while being at ease shooting down Hinduism. – Swarajya, 19 June 2019


Is ‘Hindu terror’ meant to whitewash Islamic terror? – Maria Wirth

Pragya Thakur

Maria WirthForces which want to make Hindu Dharma look despicable are still active. Hindus need to be alert and stand by their tradition, learn about it and practise it. Hindu Dharma needs to become like a wave that sweeps over the world and brings people closer to the truth. – Maria Wirth

I remember the autumn of 2008 painfully well. Only a few years earlier I had started to follow politics more closely and had subscribed to The Times of India. Several bomb blasts had happened in different Indian cities over the recent years which had claimed many fatalities. The suspected perpetrators were affiliated to Islamic organizations. Intelligence inputs from US pointed into the same direction.

Then in 2008 surprisingly, headlines of “Hindu terror” or “saffron terror” frequently showed up in the newspaper. These terms were used with ease by politicians and journalists who had never used “Islamic” or “green terror”. Hindus had been arrested, one Col. Purohit, one Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, one Swami Aseemanand and several others.

I was sure that there was no Hindu terror. There cannot be Hindu terror because Hinduism is based on Dharma, and Dharma means to do the right thing in a given situation. One’s conscience is the guide, and if one is not sure about what is the right thing, one can resort to a guru or scriptures. Yet one thing is clear: It is never right to kill common people at a railway station or in a market or in a cafe. Under no circumstances. Nobody in his right mind would do such a thing. Dharma simply does not allow it. Dharma may allow killing a cruel despot. Udham Singh surely felt justified, when he killed Lt. Governor O’Dwyer, who had approved of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in 1919, where thousands of Indians were shot dead in cold blood. But killing unknown people who go about their lives peacefully is against the inner voice in any human being. It’s against Dharma which is the backbone of Hinduism

So how did Hindu terror come into the picture? Well, it was forcefully planted into the picture and those who did it were well aware that they perpetrated a massive fraud. A movie couldn’t have had a more sinister plot. A former insider of the Home Ministry from 2006 to 2010, Sri R.V.S Mani, disclosed in his book Hindu Terror how he was called to the office of the Home Minister (at that time Shivraj Patil) where Digvijaya Singh, a prominent Congress leader and Hemant Karkare, chief of the Anti-Terrorism Squad in Mumbai, questioned him regarding investigations into recent bomb blasts. They didn’t like his conclusion that Islamic organizations were involved, and from then on the narrative was changed: in Malegaon, Hyderabad and Samjhauta train blasts, Hindus were accused to be the perpetrators and Muslim youths who had earlier been credibly linked to the blasts through witness accounts, narco-analysis and intelligence inputs, were let off.

What could have been the reason? It probably can be safely assumed that it was meant to balance the negative image that Pakistan and Islam were getting due to terrorism. Hinduism and India were meant to look as bad if not worse, and the nefarious strategy had almost succeeded. Imagine, if an attack on the famous Taj Hotel in Mumbai, where the rich and powerful of the world lodge, together with other well-known venues, like the Leopold Café or the ST train station with hundreds of victims is successfully blamed on Hindus, the link between Islam and terror which, though usually denied, is widely suspected, would have snapped.

Everything seemed to go well for the conspirators. While the Mumbai terror attack of 26/11 in 2008 was still on-going, comments on the net had already started blaming Hindus. I followed it on my laptop and was pained at this massive conspiracy. But then something went wrong or rather right. The brave sub-inspector Tukaram Omble sacrificed his life for catching one of the attackers alive. The chances that this could happen were close to nil. But now there was one alive. His name was Ajmal Kasab and he was a Muslim from Pakistan, though he was clean-shaven and deceptively wore a red thread (kalawa) tied around his wrist, which is typical for Hindus.

However, the attempts to link Hinduism to terror were not given up. In December 2010, in spite of all the evidence to the contrary, a book titled 26/11—RSS Ki Saajish? (RSS Conspiracy?) was released by none other than Digvijaya Singh, maybe to keep rumours in certain sections of society alive. And Rahul Gandhi, who was projected as the future Prime Minister of India, incredibly gave weight to the “Hindu terror” narrative. He told the US ambassador Timothy Roemer in 2010, as Wikileaks disclosed, “Hindu extremists pose a greater threat to India than Muslim militants.”

“All religions have extremists”, continues being peddled and it sounds credible. But committing acts of terror needs a motive. Islam provides a motive because the Quran not only divides humanity into two—believers and unbelievers—but also encourages in many verses fighting against unbelievers in the name of Allah. Quran 2.216 says, “Fighting is prescribed for you and you may dislike it.” It exhorts believers to follow the doctrine over their own wish or conscience. What are they meant to fight for? The goal is an Islamic state, which covers the whole world, as all other beliefs are seen as false.

A pious Muslim is meant to believe that Allah hates disbelievers, that he sends them to eternal hellfire and won’t have any mercy with them as they are the worst of all creatures (Quran 98.6). To kill an unbeliever is therefore not a sin nor is it one to rape their women. Such ideology goes by the name of religion, is protected under the right to religious freedom, taught in schools, openly propagated on the internet by maulvis, and living by it is said to land you in paradise. Can anyone believe this?

The amazing thing is that people do believe it, not only those who have been indoctrinated from childhood but even converts, for example Khalid Masood, former Adrian Elms, who drove a SUV into people on Westminster Bridge on 22 March 2017, killing five persons. He used to be very violent, and had read the Quran during one of his prison stints. Before the attack he had told his children that he was going to die fighting for God. Did he want to believe that he will get paradise for killing unbelievers in jihad, as promised in the Quran (Quran 4.95/96)?

Criminals, too, are human. They, too, don’t want to burn for all eternity in hell. Both Islam and the Church predict this terrifying future for those who are not good Christians or good Muslims (and for all unbelievers who are however not bothered because they don’t believe it). Criminals know that they don’t live a good life, and even if they are not very religious, the doubt “what if the clergy is right” may trouble many. So imagine, someone tells them that there is a sure way to land in paradise and it is by killing kafirs. Would they not want to believe it?  And do it?

Of course they won’t get paradise for killing their brothers and sisters, whose only “mistake” is that they call the Highest by another name. But nobody tells them this. Neither educated, professional Muslims sow doubt in their minds, nor the unbelievers who strangely often side with the orthodox clergy.

It’s not only Islam which strives for a future where certain people don’t exist any longer. Christianity, too, killed millions simply for not being Christians. Communism and Nazism also killed millions in the name of their ideology. The only difference to Islam and Christianity is that these don’t claim that “God” wants those “others” dead.

How very different and benevolent is Hindu Dharma. Brahman which is the ultimate cause for this universe is immanent in all. It does not divide humanity into those whom it loves and those whom it hates, as it is the self, Atman, in all. All have a right to exist. It advocates universal brotherhood, not a brotherhood which is restricted to one’s own group.

There are of course also people with Hindu names who don’t live by dharma and commit crimes out of greed, lust or revenge, and they need to be punished. But terrorizing common people in the name of Hindu Dharma is not possible and the plot by politicians of the Congress Party in collaboration with police officials to present “Hindu terror” as a fact was incredibly sinister and treacherous.

India owes a lot of gratitude to Tukaram Omble. He averted the worst in 2008. Yet the danger is not over. The forces which want to make Hindu Dharma look despicable are still active. Hindus need to be alert and stand by their tradition, learn about it and practise it. Hindu Dharma needs to become like a wave that sweeps over the world and brings people closer to the truth. Truth is not in a book. It is what truly is. It is possible to enquire into it and even experience it because it is our very being. Realising who we really are is the goal of life and it alone is true happiness.

The dogmatic, exclusivist religions know that Hindu Dharma has the potential to put them out of business. Once their followers realize that there is no need for blindly believing incredible claims about what God wants from them, the influence of those religions will be gone. As it is, Christianity has already lost a lot of its influence in the West.

Hindu dharma must be lived and must never end up in a museum. It’s our duty towards the Rishis of this ancient land. And it’s our duty towards humanity as a whole.- Maria Wirth Blog, 26 June 2019

» Maria Wirth is  Germann author and commentator who lives in Uttarakhand.

Taj Mahal Hotel Terror Attack 2008


 

USCIRF report on religious freedom in India makes no sense – M.R. Subramani

USCIRF 2019 Annual Report

M.R. SubramaniReacting to the International Religious Freedom report for India, released by the US State Department, the Ministry of External Affairs has correctly said that the US has no locus standi to come out with such a report. – M.R. Subramani  

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) report released by the US State Department last week seems to have got undue attention. This is a report that the State Department has to prepare for submission to the US Congress every year after the US International Religious Freedom Act was enacted by the US in 1998 to ensure, as a part of US foreign policy, that the right to religious freedom was not violated in other countries.

The USCIRF report (pdf) is a compilation of reports prepared by the State Department employees at embassies across the globe. The report is mainly based on news appearing in the media. Sometimes, the staff employed from the host country check with the authorities about the veracity of the news items but that is not a mandatory practice.

Every year, the Secretary of the US State Department releases the report in Washington and the respective country’s report is then released to the media. Reacting to the report released with respect to India, the Ministry of External Affairs has, probably correctly, said that the US has no locus standi to come out with such a report.

India and all those concerned over the USCIRF report just need to move on, ignoring it. What, however, has to be noted is that India is placed in Tier 2 in the report. This means, India is not a country of concern and New Delhi will not be under any undue pressure from Washington, though religious freedom issue could crop up in future Indo-US talks.

For an unbiased observer, the US preparation of USCIRF annually is curious because Washington seems to be trying to fit a single size footwear for all legs. In preparing the USCIRF report, the US State Department doesn’t seem to appreciate the federal system prevalent in India or the ways other countries are governed.

India is a country of multiple states, governed by different parties. More importantly, the issue of religious freedom or incidents relating to its violation are handled by the police. Under the Indian constitution, police are a state subject and thus what is blamed on the country as a whole is, in fact, an issue that the concerned state government should have handled.

For example, the USCIRF refers to one Chakrapani Maharaj and says he had issued a statement that relief for the people affected by floods in Kerala should be confined only to those who don’t eat beef. The Maharaj doesn’t belong to Kerala and in no way has his statement had any effect on the distribution of relief to the flood affected. How then is this a concern for “religious freedom”?

The USCIRF report refers to certain incidents in which Christians were victims in Odisha, Telangana, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Which parties govern these states? How much can the centre intervene in the functioning of the police in a state, especially in a situation where the police force has been politicised?

In another reference, the USCIRF report says that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Hindu nationalist groups had filed a complaint against the administrators of Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple in Srirangam, Tamil Nadu, for allowing a group of nuns to visit the site in May last year (2018). The US report says the complaint stated that the presence of nuns in their religious attire in the temple offended Hindu believers and mocked the temple’s sanctity.

The IRF report has missed the wood for the trees on this issue. One, why would nuns want to visit a Hindu temple at all, and one that is not a tourist site? Second, it overlooks the fact that the nuns had reportedly begun praying (presumably to their god!), third the visit was on an auspicious day when many devotees thronged the temple.

Perhaps the nuns were innocent but has the USCIRF tried to get any response from the police or concerned officials? Why wasn’t the official’s response sought on the issue before slamming it as another incident of religious intolerance in a temple premise?

The USCIRF report refers to religious riots in Bengal in April 2018 (the incidents actually took place in March) in which four persons were killed. The report says that riots broke out after “Hindutva extremists taunted Muslims and used anti-Muslim rhetoric”. There are two discrepancies here. One, the report is misleading. It was the Muslims who attacked a group that took out procession on the occasion of Ram Navami because the procession was passing through an area dominated by them. Second, the report seems to justify the Muslim “reaction” excusing it on the grounds that “Hindutva extremists taunted Muslims and used anti-Muslim rhetoric”.

Another reference the report makes is of the Carnatic vocalist, O.S. Arun, withdrawing from the Christian Carnatic Music concert held at Chennai in October last year. The report says that the musician withdrew because a nondescript Tamil Nadu-based Hindu nationalists organisation called him and others taking part in the programme “traitors” of the Hindu faith.

The report doesn’t capture the entire controversy properly. It hasn’t discussed it either. The problem with the Christian Carnatic Music concert was about replacing references to Hindu deities with Christ in the Thyagaraja krithis, which is tantamount to appropriation, and as some said, even plagiarism. Does the US government support such sort of substitution if words praising Christ were placed in a song sung for a Hindu God? Did the US officials speak to Arun to find out why he withdrew?

If the USCIRF report had been fair, it wouldn’t have missed mentioning the killings of over 22 Hindus in Karnataka, particularly from the Mangaluru coastal region during 2017-18. Nor would it have missed out on how the Mamata Banerjee government has gone all out to appease the Muslims. The report however, refers to cow slaughters and killings related to them, little recognising the fact that some of the attacks have been either on cattle smugglers or by the smugglers themselves.

Over the last few years, the USCIRF reports have faithfully discussed anti-conversion laws and forced conversions to previous religion (ghar wapsi). They have repeatedly dwelt on how religious conversions have been restricted in seven states. The reports express concern on laws in some states that bar conversions of any sort, including consensual.

The reports however gloss over the fact that a majority of conversions happen in the country for monetary benefits. In Tamil Nadu, for example, there are instances where some people have been lured into converting to Christianity. The benefits are free rations and free education for children besides cash at the time of conversion. In places like Mayiladuthurai, employment in the Gulf is mainly the lure to convert Hindus to Islam.

The references in the reports are based on sources who have vested interests. Some of the sources quoted for the violation of religious freedom are Global Council of Indian Christians, Asia News, Catholic media outlet Crux and Evangelical Fellowships of India. Can the US State Department, which authors the report, vouch for the credibility of these sources?

The USCIRF report refers to a Right to Information reply to point out that communal incidents had increased in 2017 compared to 2016 but it ignores certain other facts mentioned in the same reply. One pertinent point made in the reply is that the maximum number of incidences—943—took place in 2008 with 167 people being killed and 2,354 getting injured. Why does the IRF report ignore things that happened during the rule of the United Progressive Alliance led by the Congress?

Curiously, the USCIRF report also mentions the renaming of Allahabad to Prayagraj and quotes activists to say it was intended to erase the contribution of Muslims. Those behind the USCIRF report have failed to understand the reason for the change in the name and probably need to look unbiased at Indian history.

The report points at problems non-governmental organisations (NGOs) face being unable to function from India due to the strict implementation of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). This, according to IRF report, curbs religious freedom. What the US officials overlook is how foreign funds have come into India and how they have been misused.

Quite a few NGOs have got funds from abroad for religious conversions and irregularities have been committed with these funds. In some cases, particularly in places like Kerala, foreign funds have been used to lure people towards supporting Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (ISIS). By strictly implementing FCRA, the Indian government only seeks proper accounting from the NGOs. Does the USCIRF report want to imply that funds can be got from abroad and misused here?

Why doesn’t the USCIRF report make any mention of how foreign funds helped a few people and the church in Thoothukudi to launch protests to shut the Sterlite Copper plant? The plant was shut after the protests led to violence, resulting in the death of 13 persons in a police firing. The plant has been shut since 28 May last year. Some of the protesters had assembled in a church premise before taking out a procession on the day of the violence.

Why should churches and priests take interest in closing down an industrial unit? If the church is so concerned about the environment, then shouldn’t it take up the issue world-wide than confine it to a small city? Isn’t this one of the examples of how funds from abroad have been misused and the Indian government’s actions are justified?

The USCIRF report also refers to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, who, after converting to other religions, are being denied reservation. The USCIRF report should have taken into account why conversion happens in the first place amongst these deprived people. Sadly, it hasn’t and thus it has got the whole issue wrong.

There are two other points worth noting with regard to the USCIRF report. One is the view of Tenzing Dorjee, Chair, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). He has dissented from the USCIRF report that states religious freedom conditions in India continue on a downtrend. Conceding that India needs to address issues relating to religious freedom, Dorjee, who grew up in Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh, says India is an open society with a robust democratic and judicial system.

The second is the view expressed by Anurima Bhargava, USCIRF Commissioner. Bhargava says that the commission has not been given an opportunity to interact or visit in an official capacity for over a decade now. She says she looks forward to a dialogue and engagement with India. It is clear from this that India views the USCIRF report as an intrusion into its affairs.

As one hopes that Indian government will continue to view the USCIRF report with suspicion, one thing is clear: the USCIRF report on India makes little sense. – Swarajya, 26 June 2019

A rebuttal of Aatish Taseer’s Time magazine article on Modi the Divider – Team PGurus

Time Magazine May 20, 2019

PGURUSThe TIME magazine published Narendra Modi as India’s Divider-in-Chief by Aatish Taseer on May 20, 2019. Here is a point by point rebuttal by @WindsOfChange72.

1) Taseer asserts “The cherished achievements of independent India—secularism, liberalism, a free press—came to be seen in the eyes of many as part of a grand conspiracy in which a deracinated Hindu elite, in cahoots with minorities from the monotheistic faiths, such as Christianity and Islam, maintained its dominion over India’s Hindu majority.”

Taseer makes this assertion sound like something very bad/alarming without bothering to understand the motivations on both sides and offering any counter-view. This is a very primitive argument.

If India is truly secular then why is it that the Church owns the largest portion of non-agricultural land despite being a minuscule part of the population? Is this not an example of the establishment being in cahoots with the minorities?

4 lakh acres is the land Wakf properties account for as of 2009.

Wakf Acts: The 1954 and 1995 central laws endow huge powers with the state governments that set up and run Wakf boards in their states.

Why is it that in a “secular” India only temples are under government control and mosques and churches are free to operate whilst they amass massive land banks. @AatishTaseer Do you not see the irony in this?

@AatishTaseer, don’t the above examples already demonstrate that minorities are maintaining dominion over the majority? I have used facts to disprove your claims which dismiss this idea as a conspiracy.

2) You also claimed that “The country had a long history of politically instigated sectarian riots, most notably the killing of at least 2,733 Sikhs in the streets of Delhi after the 1984 assassination of Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards. The Congress leadership, though hardly blameless, was able, even though the selective profession of secular ideals, to separate itself from the actions of the mob.”

Firstly what happened in 1984 was a state-orchestrated Sikh genocide. These weren’t riots unless by your apologetic definition even the Holocaust was an anti-Semitic riot.

Nanavati Commission Report clearly mentions that the instructions to kill the Sikhs came directly from the PMO.

The then President and the Home Minister wanted to call in the Army but the decision was vetoed by “father of mob lynching” PM Rajiv Gandhi.

Exactly how is Congress “secular” by your definition despite 1984 is something only a bigot or an apologist could explain.

You blame Modi for not apologizing for Gujarat riots but you absolutely fail to mention that the army was called in Gujarat unlike secular 1984.

You also fail to mention that Modi had sent a letter requesting CMs of three neighbouring states to immediately send additional police forces. It is a well-known fact that police force ratio for the population is really low.

The source for the letter sent to 3 CMs can all be found here. Why was army not deployed in 1984?

Instead of apologizing for 1984, Rajiv said: “When a big tree falls, the Earth shakes.” Yet he is secular.

Andy Marino writes in his book “Modi appealed to the Chief Ministers of Gujarat’s three neighbouring States—Ashok Gehlot in Rajasthan, the late Vilasrao Deshmukh in Maharashtra and Digvijay Singh in Madhya Pradesh—to send aid in the form of law enforcement and paramilitary personnel. ”The letters of the request were sent to the three Congress Chief Ministers on March 1, barely a day after the violence broke out. What was the response Marino notes, “Maharashtra eventually sent a very limited number of personnel to help, but the others flatly refused.” Why haven’t you mentioned why Congress-ruled states didn’t help stop the riots by sending additional forces?

Modi did his best to tackle the riots, why should he apologize when he wasn’t the perpetrator?

In a perfect display of your bias and selective secularism, you failed to mention why is Congress silent on its cadres linked to the Godhra carnage.

58 Hindus were burnt alive, mostly women and kids. 140 litres of petrol was stocked from before.

3) @AatishTaseer writes “in 1992 had destroyed a 16th-century mosque, said to stand at the birthplace of the Hindu epic hero Ram”

This is pure bigotry. What do you mean by “said to stand”. The Archaeological Survey of India has already given proof that the temple existed. The same ASI which also had Muslim members who also agreed that a temple existed.

Also, what do you mean by Hindu epic hero? Rām isn’t just some “epic hero”, he is the Supreme Personality of Godhead as per our Vedic texts. I dare you to say the same thing about Abrahamic faiths.

4) @AatishTaseer writes “They feel their culture and religion has been demeaned; they entertain fantasies of “Hinduphobia”.

Bigot!

@nytimes also had to apologize for it’s racist, Hinduphobic cartoon on Mangalyaan success.

Those who deny Hinduphobia, Islamophobia and anti-Semitism are all bigots just like @AatishTaseer.

Based on my above facts, racist @nytimes is rightly called “New Yuck Times”.

5) According to your article “cow protection mobs have killed at least 46 people since 2015″.

In a country of 1.3 billion people, 46 people killed in a span of roughly 4 years. Is this statistically significant enough to claim that there’s majoritarian violence?

In the Godhra carnage in one day 58 Hindus were burnt alive vs 46 people who were killed due to cow-related violence in a span of four years.

I would believe that there’s a case for majoritarian violence if the data calculated based on % terms would prove that victims are mainly Muslims.

Purely on the basis of a mathematical argument, if for every 100 humans one is a bigot perpetrator of hate crime then logically speaking the hate crime perps will always be more from the majority in any country, the community at any point in time. The only case when this would be alarming is when in % terms there’s a trend of perps being from a particular community.

Your argument is absolutely specious with no logical/statistical basis.

FYI 49 Muslims died in New Zealand in the mosque attack. 49 Muslims die in one day in NZ in a hate crime vs 46 deaths in India due to cow-related violence over four years!

Also, the population of NZ is minuscule compared to that of India.

Truth is India needs better hate crime stats.

6) You also make a point lauding Nehru for his scientific temper but obviously omit to mention that he used to go to astrologers and tantriks. An astrologer had also warned Nehru of a Chinese attack coz of which Nehru flew into a rage.

Even J.B.S. Haldane, polymath biologist, who was Marxist in his ideological leanings, was disenchanted by the dominance of bureaucracy and politicians in the scientific establishment in India during Nehru’s time and criticised it.

7) You go on talking about all the controversial statements made by BJP leaders but carefully omit the statement of Owaisi who called for a genocide of Hindus in 15 mins.

You also omit the statement on Sikh genocide by Sam Pitroda “Hua to Hua.”

You also fail to mention that increase in the Haj subsidy under Modi and the laptops etc given to modernizing madrasas.

Yes absolutely, so much hatred for Muslims.

8) “Modi’s record on women’s issues is spotty.”

Really, I don’t understand why our secular government till now never banned triple talaq when even the country not known for women empowerment Saudi Arabia has banned it.

Six women in cabinet compared to four during UPA. Also, Defence and MEA are extremely critical ministries both run by women. Here in this link is a list of all schemes for women.

9) “Amit Shah, speaks of women as having the status of deities, ever the refuge of the religious chauvinist who is only too happy to revere women into silence.” So now you have a problem with the deification of women?

Do you know anything about the idea of Shiva & Shakti, Hinduphobe?

10) “What Modi cannot—or will not—do is tell India the hard truth that if she wishes to be a great power, and not a Hindu theocracy, the medieval Indian past, mired in superstition and magic, must go under.”

This proves exactly how deracinated you are who feels Indian culture = superstitions. We have a lot to be proud of.

Did you know that “A little known school of scholars in southwest India discovered one of the founding principles of modern mathematics hundreds of years before Newton“?

In 600 BCE, ancient Indian physician Sushruta performed nose surgeries and skin grafts and wrote treatises on the same.

This 2500 years ago!

Thomas Sankara said “The greatest difficulty we have faced is the neocolonial spirit that exists in this country. We were colonized by a country, France that left us with certain habits. For us, being successful in life, being happy, meant trying to live as they do in France, like the richest of French.” In a similar vein, success for imperialist elites like @AatishTaseer might be to live like the richest American/European however it will never be what success means for us India.

We worship Ram, although Ravana’s Lanka had all the material wealth and was literally built of gold. Rām signifies family values, egalitarianism. Yes, think about the incident with Kevat and Shabari, compassion, valour, noblesse obliges, spirituality (discourses with various saints) etc.

All values which vapid Western materialism can never replace. Mukesh Ambani bailed out his brother. @Ra_Bies had drawn a parallel to how Munshi Premchand’s stories illustrated these same family values.

India will have its own values, it’s own definition of success, it’s own narrative. We won’t ape the West.

The name “Bhagavan” means the one who is full of all six opulence (bhaga), i.e., fame, beauty, wealth, knowledge, strength and sixth and most importantly renunciation. Ponder that if you can.

Also, Indira may have forcibly inserted “secularism” in our Constitution but it will never be a part of Indian culture because Indian culture is pluralistic just like all Indic religions. Secular France bans the burqa and secular Italy bans Sikhs from carrying Kirpans. India respects all religions and that inherent pluralism is part of our culture.

The same West which is so “enlightened” persecuted Galileo, Socrates, etc and went on with witch trials and [Goa] Inquisition and what not.

Hindus can be atheists to like the followers of Carvaka philosophy. Hinduism never persecuted homosexuality, atheism, etc.

And our greatest texts like Srimad Bhagavatam are thousands of pages of questions and answers sessions discussing rationally and logically doctrines of theism.

Very different from Sky God books that demand believers and expect blind faith as compared to a culture which encourages curiosity—Brahma jijnasa is supposed to be the foundation of every spiritual journey.

Dualistic doctrines of Abrahamic faiths will always find it difficult to grasp the beauty of non-dualism.

Suffice to say, India will write its own destiny, not the West! PGurus, 11 May 2019

» Team PGurus are a team of focused individuals with expertise in the following fields viz. Journalism, Technology, Economics, Politics, Sports & Business. We are factual, accurate and unbiased.

Modi the Divider


 

Video: Why do Indian intellectuals hate Hinduism? – S.L. Bhyrappa

S. L. Bhyrappa

Q : Dr. Bhyrappa, you have traveled extensively to almost all countries and have studied social behavior of democratic, communist and authoritarian societies. Why is it that in India a section of educated and intellectual people opposes everything related to Hinduism, be it it’s scriptures, customs, practices and beliefs? Is this behavior unique to India and if so, why? – IndicTales, 8 April 2019