Show solidarity with your Shia brothers and sisters

February 20, 2013

FOR PAKISTAN

I request/urge/recommend/plead/ask you to show solidarity with your Shia brothers and sisters. Please take similar photos of yourself and remind these oppressors that we stand as ONE … that they are not eliminating Shias…but merely increasing their strength.

I’m not concerned about the Government that sees nothing…I’m not concered with the Media that says nothing…and I’m not concerned about the Judiciary that hears nothing…I am concerned with the Soul that feels nothing. I am ashamed not that my Pakistani brother pulled the trigger… I am ashamed that my life goes on…

I strongly protest the killing of innocent SHIAS!! Before becoming a Shia or a Sunni…one has to be a Muslim…lets just keep it to that.

If being a Sunni means to love the Prophet (SAW) then there is and was no bigger Sunni than Hazrat Ali (RAH)…and…if being a Shia means to love Hazrat Ali (RAH) then there is and was no bigger Shia than the Prophet (SAW) himself.

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WHO SPEAKS FOR PAKISTAN?

February 11, 2013

By Ghalib Sultan
Area 14/8

Lahore hosted diplomats and other foreign dignitaries including the Deputy Prime Minister of Turkey at the launch of the new metro bus mass transit system. The launch ceremony went well and Lahorites hoped and prayed that the metro bus is a success and serves the masses. Unfortunately not everyone thought it was a great step forward. A former Chief Minister chose that occasion to run down his successor and the bus project. A minister termed the project ‘illegal’ as it was without federal approval and hinted at a corruption probe. Again this was timed with the launch event because such misgivings were never voiced in all the months that it took to complete the project. It is an election year and there is political polarization of the worst kind but shouldn’t the country take precedence over politics? In our ambition to outdo each other in proving loyalties to parties should Pakistan be publicly run down?

The present government is completing its 5 year tenure and the country is gearing up for elections. A caretaker government should take over soon. The Judiciary is functioning. The Military is doing its job. Politicians are busy doing what they do before elections-run down each other and extol their own virtues. The Tahirul Qadri intervention is being taken in stride for what it is-part of the political power play. Suddenly we have voices-responsible voices-talking about conspiracies by mysterious quarters to delay elections and prolong the caretaker arrangement. What does this say about Pakistan? That we cannot have elections? That we do not want to have elections? That we are doing what we do best-running down our own institutions? That,having made all the preparations,including setting up of an election commission,we now want to scuttle all that and start afresh? How does all this help our image?

Pakistan is in the grip of terrorist violence. There are economic problems. The government has problems in delivering governance. There is internal security and instability. Is any of this a surprise and reason enough to tell the world that we are failing,that there is no hope,that we are falling apart and that we cannot protect our assets because our security apparatus is penetrated by our enemies? Pakistan is in an area that has seen four decades of violence. Its policies have been framed by an authoritarian structure that has now been sidelined. The people want democracy and they want policies that create internal and external harmony. They will brook no interference from those who have other agendas. If this government has had difficulty in delivering all this then it has surely created the space for the next government to deliver. Isn’t this what we should be projecting to our people and the world? Shouldn’t we be focusing on what has actually been achieved?

Are we looking beyond our petty rivalries and vendettas at the bigger picture taking shape around us? The Arab Spring,Iran’s struggle,the US plans for the Pacific and its relationship with India and the South East Asian States,China’s growing power,a Russia that is consolidating ,an Afghanistan that may stabilize and the ‘new silk road’ idea. There are vast opportunities and challenges for Pakistan if we can understand and exploit our strengths instead of forever moaning and groaning about our problems and weaknesses.

Area 14/8: Who will provide affirmative action in India?

February 8, 2013

Area 14/8

Consumed with weapon purchases, maritime capabilities and external threats from China and Pakistan, India has it seems neglected to peek at the state of affairs within its own boundaries. In the past few months, multiple incidents infringing the right of freedom of speech have occurred which has prompted writer Salman Rushdie to smear India with his “cultural emergency” allegation.

Although Rushdie’s credibility is uncertain and his agenda equally debatable, his accusation rings of the truth. India’s cultural intellect, its writers, poets, film makers and artists are being censured if their opinion and expression does not conform to the mainstream perceptions of India. Recently, a Tamil film called Vishwaroopam was condemned by Muslim religious groups in Tamil Nadu since it projected Muslims in a negative light. The government decided to ban the release of the film claiming that they lacked sufficient police forces to monitor all cinema houses for riots. Vishwaroopam’s producer, Kamal Haasan was so disillusioned that he threatened to leave India for a secular state abroad. Eventually, he agreed to cut some scenes from the film.

Elsewhere, renowned sociologist, Ashis Nandy, was attacked for insulting unprivileged classes by drawing links between corruption and “other backward classes, scheduled casters and scheduled tribes” at the Jaipur Literary Festival. A case was registered against him by Rajpal Meena, Chairperson of the SC/ST Rajasthan Manch, and subsequently, he was charged with the Prevention of Atrocities Act.

The controversial Salman Rushdie also made headlines when he accused the West Bengal government of deliberately hatching a plan to prevent his participation in Kolkata Literary Meet for the promotion of his new novel, “Midnight’s Children”. Even last year, protests and death threats had compelled him to cancel his visit to the Jaipur Literature Festival.

There are many other instances where unconventional news or statements have been targeted. India ranked a shocking 140th out of 179 countries on the Press Freedom index, issued by Reporters Without Borders. Reporter Soorinje would attest to this fact. He was arrested for multiples offences including criminal conspiracy, rioting with deadly weapons and using criminal force on a woman with the intention of outraging her modesty. Soorinje’s report on an attack on a birthday celebration involving Muslims at a homestay in Mangalore had held right wing extremists Hindu Jagarana Vedike responsible. Similarly, two women were arrested in last November when they Facebook comments offended followers of Bal Thackeray.

India should not be singled out for rising social discontent over freedom of speech. There are many such cases present in modernized societies too. The real issue concerning India is why the government chooses to be a part of this oppression? This is the government which likes to highlight itself as a democratic pluralistic nation where people of different religions, ethnicities, races and social statuses reside in harmony.

The government uses the maintenance of law and order as a justification for its extreme measures. But is law and order code for protecting parties’ mandate? In West Bengal similar to Tamil Nadu, people believed extreme steps were taken by the government to prevent any ill-will with Muslim voters. Are these infringements on the freedom of speech a political game only? Politicians may indeed be using cultural intellectuals as easy targets to keep the public distracted from pressing issues like poverty and unemployment.

It may not be just that the government is afraid of extremists; it may even share the same sentiments. Many state officials include hardliners like members of the Bharatiya Janata Party( BJP) sparking suspicions about state-sponsored terrorism. India’s Home Minister admitted to the involvement of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and BJP in promoting terrorism within the country and placing the blame on minority communities. Just recently, BJP was very vocal in banning Pakistani writers from attending a literary festival in India.

Freedom of speech is guaranteed in the Indian Constitution under Article 19. However, this freedom is subject to certain limitations such as “public order”, “decency or morality” and “security of the State”. The Supreme Court seems to be maintaining a low profile in controlling the government’s outbursts of actions. In Nandy’s case,for example, it stayed the arrest but also supported the state’s response saying that an “idea” is capable of inflicting harm.

Indian has failed to implement affirmative action. Since the government is not longer impartial, it is now up to the masses to reclaim their right to the freedom of speech.

Tacstrat Analysis: Procrastination over the Pipeline

February 7, 2013

1_tacstrat logo

Conceived by a Pakistani civil engineer in the 1950s, and brought on the table between the concerned parties in 1995, the Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline project has remained on the forefront, and brushed aside with an unbecoming ease. The pipeline that aims to connect Iran’s biggest gas field in South Pars with neighboring Pakistan and India has become a matter of global interest. Pakistan’s energy crisis and Iran’s economic boycott, owing to the Khomeini regime’s adamancy with respect to their nuclear program, make the pipeline a win-win bargain for the two. Yet, with Pakistan’s instability, and an inability to pick a side, the pipeline, as we enter 2013, remains a far fetched thought. Despite recent positive angle, and signing of contracts on 4 February 2012 between the two governments, we realize this is not the first time Pakistan has come so close and withdrawn.

Summer 2012 took the energy crisis to new heights altogether. With load-shedding in many of Punjab’s housing colonies at a shocking 20 hours a day, the gap between supply and demand had reached a shocking 40%. The battlefield over Punjab’s assailing energy shortage became the perfect ground to exploit political grievances. At steak mostly remains Punjab’s once flourishing industrial sector. With ‘thermal power’ as the only reliable alternative, the high cost of this substitute has shut down various plants. Those still functioning, owing to the expenses of productions fail to compete in the market where growing economies like Bangladesh are standing on the same platform. Moreover, private power houses have either slashed down production, or shut down completely because of the government’s failure to pay them.

While Pakistan gets embroiled in a circular debt, that stood at a tall $880 million last summer, as the government pays only when the power generation houses are on the verge of suing, structural problems fail to be addressed, and the sloppy mammoth continues to move at its own painfully slow pace. Pakistani academics, politicians and technocrats, with the help of allies have looked into various regional and local solutions. A heated debate was over the Kalabagh dam. Theoretically the dam could have also prevented half of Punjab and Sindh from flooding, and millions worth of damage (not to mention the lives), but as a solution to our energy crisis, the local and federal cannot agree on a solution. Secondly, the United States, that wants to isolate Iran, and simultaneously make the Afghan and Central Asian bloc economically superior, expects Pakistan to conform.

A third option, newly tapped, is cashing on the hot, sunny sweltering heat of the plains, more specifically the sunlight. November 2012 the Punjab government signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the German government. The best part about solar panels is it’s a onetime investment and runs for free on sunlight on its own. With the PML-N working on these alternatives, it is understood by the federal government that the power shortage entails Pakistan cannot be selective, but must look into multiple sources. The solar project, if executed effectively alone can tap part of the than 2.4 million megawatts of light energy going to waste. Renewable sources a safe and environment friendly solution.

Looking into innovative ways to resolve the energy deficit, which is taking a grave toll on Pakistan’s industry and standard of life, however is not sufficient. At this point Pakistan, like in most critical political points, is again torn between two opposing ends. Our alliance with the United States, India’s silent conformity, Pakistan remains in a tough loop. The United States wants to isolate Iran: straight, blunt, and no flowery diplomacy to coat that bitter pill. Iran has failed to play the game by the standards of the ‘peace decorum’ and since the IAEA remains dissatisfied with their nuclear aspirations, the only option is to boycott Iran, impose economic sanctions. The sanctions have been showing their impact and unless the Khomeini government builds alliances in the region, to successfully bypass the international ‘payment’ transactions, there is little hope for them economically.

Pakistan hence becomes a key player, and one that has to make a quick decision. Only two weeks back Hilary Clinton made it clear that joining hands with Iran will only force the United States to blacklist Pakistan as well. And of course, given the fragile state of our economy who wants to be in the bad books of international coercion squad? A vicious cycle once again. The pros versus cons of going ahead with the pipeline project have been contemplated for years now. There is no solution. India had the luxury of backing out. Firstly, after economic steak (to begin with the capital to invest), India’s economic well being to a great degree is dependent of the success of the TAPI pipeline (Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India). The United States also signed a nuclear contract, a polite way of returning the favor. In Pakistan’s case, the promise of TAPI in the long run, with any compensation remains an unattractive bargain. Also, a general rough patch with the United States since the war on terror has made Pakistan suspicious of the US’ word. It would be accurate to say the United States has been a fair weathered friend.

Regional stability and keeping our options open on the diplomatic grid seem to be smarter options. The United State’s threats have made Pakistan cautious. Two years ago the pipeline, in the imagination of Tehran and Islamabad stood exactly where it stands today. By 2014, we had projected the project to be complete and pumping. And yet as Islamabad chooses to procrastinate, the energy, economic and law and order situations worsen. Tehran shook hands with Islamabad this Monday, 4 February 2013. For the domestic government to actually go forward with this decision would be a bold move, sound to have consequences. Could Balochistan’s security worsen, or perhaps another shootout at the Afghan-Pakistan border, we can only find out. But taking a firm stand today is a far better move than waiting for a miracle from the land of broken promises.

Hypocrisy during Hajj

January 30, 2013

By Ziyad Motala
ZoneAsia-Pk

A pivotal theme in current Islamic political discourse is a demand for justice, a key tenet of the Quran. A popular complaint in Islamic political argument is discrimination against Muslims in the west such as the ban of the veil in European countries, minarets in Switzerland or racial profiling in many western countries. Unfortunately, there is a conspicuous lack of looking inwards to practices within Muslim countries. Muslims from all over the world have just completed the annual pilgrimage, the Hajj in Saudi Arabia. The Hajj represents a critical pillar of Islam and is supposed to represent a universal gathering of Muslims, which transcends race, ethnicity, color or any other distinction. Muslims are supposed to meet in the sacred precincts surrounding the holy city of Mecca as equals wearing the same simple clothing meant to symbolize perfect brotherhood, where individuals or groups do not see themselves as separate entities and differences of lineage, tribe or race have no bearing.

The experiences of the Hajj are very different depending on which part of the world you originate from. If you hail from Saudi Arabia or the Gulf states, you will perform the hajj in relative luxury and privilege, which is denied to Muslims from the sub-continent, Africa or the rest of the world. Those from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states have a different Hajj based on luxurious accommodations, and preferential treatment in performing the rituals. The latest egregious practice is the high-speed rail service, which transports the pilgrims from Mecca to the sacred sites where the rituals of the Hajj are performed. The train is reserved only for Saudis and citizens from the Gulf countries. Citizens from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf countries can be transported to the holy sites within a few minutes. For others, they will have to take the bus or walk which could take many hours each day. I cannot think of any other place in the world today that practices such crass racism. Imagine a train in the United States that states no Arabs — just people from the west — can ride in. The real tragedy is the lack of outrage from Muslims.

The Hajj as a gathering of Muslims, based on equality, simplicity and brotherhood is a fiction. The Hajj is a gigantic money making endeavor. All visits to the holy place have to take place under the auspices of a Saudi institution or company, which is totally Saudi-owned. Every opportunity is geared towards profit maximization. The Saudi companies in turn enter into agreements with parties in the local country where the pilgrim resides. The Saudi company takes care of the negotiation with the local hotels and other parties to organize and pay for the accommodations and internal transportation and the like. Saudis have profited greatly from the pilgrims who have been exploited on a scale that is beyond imagination. A two week visit to Saudi Arabia during the Hajj period (if you are not sponsored) in modest accommodations costs more than a month-long world tour (not counting the fact that for five days during the two week period, the pilgrim is staying in a tent). Imagine the outrage if a Saudi was told that he could not do business in the United States (including booking a hotel) except though a United States entity?

Saudi Arabia represents one of the worse examples of a stratified society at the apex of which sits the descendants of its founder Ibn Saud constituted in the current royal family. And then appears a pecking order based on lineage or clan and others recognized as Saudi. Then come hundreds of thousands of individuals (including second and third generation Saudi born), followed by hundreds of thousands of foreign guest workers.

The sum total of rights and privileges enjoyed — be it access to jobs, education, access to property, welfare benefits or the performance of the Hajj depends upon where one belongs in the pecking order. Those at the top enjoy considerable rights and power over those at the bottom. The most affected group is the foreign worker, particularly the foreign woman worker. These guest workers operate under a kafeel (master) to whom many are indebted for years, a situation that invites trafficking in people and a relationship akin to slavery. Over the past few days, we have been informed about several incidents of abuse of foreign guest workers from Indonesia in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states. Where is the outrage from Muslims and their scholars? Each year, thousands of female workers seek protection at foreign embassies from abuse and rape. International human rights groups and others have documented the rampant abuse, lack of fair trial standards, denial of freedom of movement, forced labor approaching conditions of slavery and beating of foreign workers. Also documented is the weak judicial system, which offers little protection to those at the bottom, rung of society. The judicial system gives more credence to the wealthy and locals in disputes involving foreigners.

Islamic law derived from the sayings of the prophet Mohammad articulates a vision of human dignity (in ways analogous to modern human rights) in stating “No Arab has any superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a non-Arab have any superiority over an Arab; nor has a white man any superiority over a black man, or the black many any superiority over the white man. You are all the children of Adam, and Adam was created from Clay”. Conspicuously absent are protests among Muslims about racism, racial discrimination, gender discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance prevalent in so many Muslim countries starting with the cradle of Islam, Saudi Arabia.

Rev. Martin Luther King and Mahatma Gandhi

January 24, 2013

Written by BALDEV SINGH
ZoneAsia-Pk

Dear Oprah,

I am writing this letter because I think of you as an enlightened person. This letter is about the statements you made during the show you dedicated to the memory of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King. During that show, you compared Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King with Mahatma Gandhi.

In one of your statement you said something like “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King’s sacrifice.” Oprah, what about those countless unknown and unsung heroes, who preceded Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King. They too suffered hardships and sacrificed their lives for freedom and justice for the black people. As a matter of fact, black people revolted against slavery and started struggling for freedom the moment they were captured in Africa and the chains of slavery were put around their necks. Since that moment black people have expressed their suffering, sorrow, helplessness and burning desire for freedom and justice through their songs. That is the reason why black people have contributed so much for the creation and development of new music.

The mentality or thinking, which was responsible for slavery, made it sure that the history of slavery and their struggle for freedom and justice is not known to the world. And if this story has to be told, then it must be told the way that “mentality” wants it to be told. There are people even today who think that slavery was benign and slaves were happy and contented with their situation. These people also justify colonial rule by saying, “It was necessary to civilize the uncivilized.” On the contrary, it is our conviction that a civilized man doesn’t deny another man’s humanity. He doesn’t enslave another man or subjugates another man in any form or manner- politically, economically, socially and religiously.

Deliberate efforts have been made to blot out the history of slavery and black peoples’ struggle for freedom and their contribution to human society in all walks of life. For instance, you go to any major city in the USA, you find all sorts of museums, but you don’t find the one about slavery. The US Congress was very enthusiastic about Jewish holocaust museum in Washington D. C. However, the same Congress has been unwilling so far to establish a museum about slavery. Moreover, what about a holocaust museum of native Americans, the Indians? Whereas Jewish holocaust took place in Europe, the slavery of blacks and the genocide of the native people took place in the USA. I leave it for you to draw your own conclusion. However, I believe that it takes moral courage to look into the eyes of evil and not just empty moral rhetoric.

The emergence of independent Africa had a major positive impact on the “black civil rights movement” in the United States and the anti apartheid movement in South Africa. It boosted the morale of these movements and brought worldwide recognition to Dr. Martin Luther King and Mr. Nelson Mandela. That’s why, who knows how many “great men” were lynched in the United States and how many were tortured to death in solitary cells in South Africa before Dr. Martin Luther King and Mr. Nelson Mandela, respectively.

During that show, you compared Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King with Mahatma Gandhi. I think your information about Mahatma Gandhi is probably based on the writings of European and Hindu “myth makers” (historians). Had you known the truth about Mahatma Gandhi, you wouldn’t have said that Dr. Martin Luther King was following the policy of the great Mahatma Gandhi.

I think it is disgraceful to compare Dr. Martin Luther King with Mahatma Gandhi. For example, whereas Dr. King represented the aspirations of all black people, Mahatma Gandhi represented the interest of only high caste Hindus who constituted 10-12% of the Indian population. Whereas Dr. King appealed to all Americans to rise above their prejudices of race, religion and gender to form a just society, Mahatma Gandhi was the mastermind behind the partition of India into two nations, one Hindu and the other Muslim. Here are some facts about Mahatma Gandhi.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born in the state of Gujrat in Baniya caste whose occupation is business. After obtaining a law degree from England he returned to India. However, after a short stay he decided to move to South Africa where he thought he could make more money. A large number of Indians from Gujrat State were brought to South Africa as indentured servants. Being a caste conscious Hindu, he looked down upon the natives. He used to say:

I can see why a white man discriminates against an African, but why against us. We Indians have the same values, the white man has.

Besides his law practice he worked for the British army recruiting Indians during the Boer War and the Zulu rebellion. He was the commander of an ambulance corps made up of Indians.

The Bolshevik revolution of 1914 in Russia inspired worldwide nationalist movements against colonialism and dictatorships. To sabotage Indian national movement, the British colonists brought Gandhi to India. What the “myth makers” don’t tell is that the Indian National Congress Party, which was later controlled by Gandhi was set up under the patronage of the British Government and it was dominated by high caste Hindus, who constituted only 10-12% of the Indian population. Anybody who was considered a threat to the interest of the British or high caste Hindus was thrown out of the party. The high caste Hindus, who had control over the Indian economy, also wanted to usurp political power after the departure of the British. But there was one formidable obstacle in their path to achieve this objective. And that obstacle was the Muslim majority states of Punjab, Bengal, Sindh, Blouchistan and Northwest Frontier.

To exclude these Muslim dominant states from the Indian union, the Hindu leaders of Congress Party headed by Gandhi started making provocative statements to instill doubt and fear in the minds of Muslim population that their future in independent India under the control of Hindu majority was not safe. Muslim leaders started asking for constitutional guarantees to safeguard their future, which the Hindu leaders were not willing to provide.

Frustrated, Muslim leaders asked for partition of the country to create a Muslim state. They did not see the trap that “high caste Hindus” had laid for them. They fell into that trap without realizing the impact their demand would have on the future generations of people of the Indian subcontinent. The stage was set for the partition of India into Muslim Pakistan and Hindu India. Gandhi and his associates congratulated each other for accomplishing their objective while holding Muslims responsible for the partition of the country. This is the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi for which future generations of Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis would pay dearly, God knows for how long!

The cruel and deceitful nature of Gandhi was revealed when he counseled Hindu and Sikh refugees, who came to see him in April 1947, after they were driven out of their homes following a terrible massacre of Hindus and Sikhs in the Ravalpindi area of Punjab. Gandhi asked them to go back to their homes, as he exhorted them that he wouldn’t accept the partition of the country. He kept repeating like a parrot, “I won’t allow the partition of the country. The country would be partitioned only over my dead body.” You can imagine the level of his depravity, because his Congress Party had already accepted with his blessing the partition of the country as a condition for Independence. And a few months later on August 15, 1947 the Indian union was divided in two nations, one Muslim and the other Hindu.

The claim that Gandhi won freedom for India peacefully without shedding a drop of blood is the biggest fabricated lie of the 20th century.

Up to the start of World War II, the British government categorically rejected the demand for the independence of India in the immediate future. However, the situation changed dramatically after the war. The war was so devastating to the British power that their government found it impossible to build the infra structure and economy of the homeland while coping with the growing national liberation movements in the colonies. The British government wisely decided to grant freedom to its colonies.

It wasn’t Gandhi’s movement which drove the British out of India, it was the impact of second world war, which made it impossible for the British to hold on to their Empire. Shortly after the independence of India, other colonies in Asia, Africa and Caribbean gained their independence peacefully. So what is so unique about India’s independence? Had there been no World War II, India would still be a British colony!

The other story that the “myth makers” do not tell is that the Independence of India was marked by one of the greatest upheavals of the 20th century. Two Indian states, Punjab and Bengal, were partitioned at the time of independence causing untold suffering and loss of life and property. In Punjab almost all the Hindu and Sikh population of about five millions were forced to leave their homes and properties on the Pakistan side where their ancestors had lived for hundreds of years. Similarly, about five million Muslims were forced to vacate their home and properties on the Indian side.

In the ensuing communal frenzy and carnage, may be as many as one million people perished and thousands of women were kidnapped and raped. About one third of the population of Punjab was engulfed in the inferno created by the independence of India. Of the total population of about five and half million Sikhs, about 40% were rendered homeless due to Independence. The population of Bengal was much higher than that of Punjab and you can imagine the human suffering there! The claim that Gandhi won freedom for India peacefully is a cruel joke on Punjabis and Bengalis.

To my knowledge only in two places, the United States of America and Ireland, the force of arms drove out the British colonists. Everywhere else the British freed the colonies peacefully. On what ground it is claimed that Gandhi won freedom for India peacefully without shedding a drop of blood.

The claim that Gandhi worked for the uplift of Dalits (untouchables) is also a myth.

Gandhi was a Hindu revivalist, who upheld every aspect of Hinduism including the caste system, which is the essence of Hinduism. His writings, speeches and statements confirm this.

I don’t believe the caste system to be an odious and vicious dogma. It has its limitations and defects, but there is nothing sinful about it. Harijan, 1933.

I believe in Varnashrama (caste system) which is the law of life. The law of Varna (color and / or caste) is nothing but the law of conservation of energy. Why should my son not be scavenger if I am one? Harijan, 3-6-1947.

He (Shudra, low caste) may not be called a Brahmin (uppermost caste), though he (Shudra) may have all the qualities of a Brahmin in this birth. And it is a good thing for him (Shudra) not to arrogate a Varna (caste) to which he is not born. It is a sign of true humility. Young India, 11-24-1927.

According to Hindu belief, he who practices a profession which does not belong to him by birth, does violence to himself and becomes a degraded being by not living up to the Varna (caste) of his birth. Young India, 11-14-1927.

As years go by, the conviction is daily growing upon me that Varna (caste) is the law of man’s being, and therefore, caste is necessary for Christians and Muslims as it has been necessary for Hinduism, and has been its saving grace. Speech at Trivandrum, (Collection of Speeches), Ramanath Suman (1932).

I would resist with my life the separation of “Untouchables” from the caste Hindus. The problem of the “Untouchable” community was of comparatively little importance. London Round Table Conference 1931.

I call myself a Snatana man, one who firmly believes in the caste system. Dharma Manthan, p 4.

I believe in caste division determined by birth and the very root of caste division lies in birth. Varna Vyavastha, p 76-77.

The four castes and the four stages of life are things to be attained by birth alone. Dharma Manthan, p 5.

Caste means the predetermination of a man’s profession. Caste implies that a man must practice only the profession of his ancestors for his livelihood. Varna Vyavstha, p 28, 56, 68.

Shudra only serves the higher castes as a matter of religious duty and who will never own any property. The gods will shower down flowers on him. Varna Vyavastha, p 15.

I have noticed that the very basis of our thought have been severely shaken by Western civilization which is the creation of the Satan. Dharma Manthan, p 65.

How is it possible that the Antyaja (outcastes) should have the right to enter all the existing temples? As long as the law of caste and karma has the chief place in the Hindu religion, to say that every Hindu can enter every temple is a thing that is not possible today. Gandhi Sikshan, Vol. 11, p 132.

The caste system can’t be said to be bad because it does not allow inter-dining and inter-marriages in different castes. Gandhi by Shiru, p129.

If the Shudar (low caste) leave their ancestral profession and take up others, ambition will rouse in them and their peace of mind will be spoiled. Even their family peace will be disturbed. Hind Swaraj.

The superiority of caste and race is deeply imbedded in the psyche of upper caste Hindus irrespective of their upbringing or the level of education or the place where they live. For example, in the words of a socialist leader, Madhu Limaye, “Nehru practiced both racism and casteism, despite his modern upbringing and outlook” (Telegraph, Calcutta, November 21, 1987).

In a revealing passage about his “making”, Nehru wrote, “Behind me lie somewhere in the sub-conscience, racial memories of hundred or whatever the numbers may be, generations of Brahmins. I cannot get rid of that past inheritance” (Jawaharlal Nehru, An Autobiography, (1936), Delhi, 1980, p 596.).

Sir V. S. Naipaul is a Nobel laureate in literature. His Brahmin ancestors were brought as indentured servants to Trinidad long time ago. He grew up in Trinidad and has spent most of his life in England. In his earlier work An Area of Darkness, 1964 he was unforgiving of India. Later the “Brahmin” in him stirred up and came out spewing hatred and venom. He condoned the massacre of thousands of Sikhs in June 1984, when Indira Gandhi ordered a military attack on the Golden Temple complex on the day when thousands of Sikh pilgrims had gathered there to celebrate the martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev (A Million Mutinies Now, 1990). In 1992 he justified the destruction of a 400 hundred-year-old mosque (Babri Masjid) by Hindu mobs lead by Bhartiya Janta Party (a fascist Hindu party) because of the mistreatment of Hindus by Muslim rulers centuries back in the past. He has become the darling of Hindu fascist organizations.

Mahatma Gandhi, whose Baniya (Vaisha) caste is two steps lower than the uppermost Brahmin caste, was a vigorous defender of the caste system.

“The caste system, in my opinion, has a scientific basis. Reason does not revolt against it. It has disadvantages. ………Caste creates a social and moral restraint……I can find no reason for their (castes) abolition. To abolish caste is to demolish Hinduism. There is nothing to fight against the Varnasharma (caste system). I don’t believe the caste system to be an odious and vicious dogma. It has its limitations and defects, but there is nothing sinful about it” (Harijan, 1933).

Gandhi’s calling “Untouchables”, as Harijans is a cruel joke on the Untouchables by an insensitive and depraved man.

Harijan literally means “child of God”. However, in India this label is used for the illegitimate children of temple girls (anchoress) fathered by priests. Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, the leader of the Untouchables, vehemently opposed Gandhi’s use of Harijans for the Untouchables. Recently, Ms Mayawati, a leader of the Untouchables asked rhetorically, “If we are Harijans then what are the upper castes like Nehru, Gandhi and Patel? Are they bastards?”

That Gandhi was an “apostle of peace” is not true.

Gandhi was a “Hindu revivalist” and “Hindu politician” combined in one, who used nonviolence as a tool for political objectives. He used to coerce others to concede to his demands by threats of “going to fast unto death”. He was no pacifist as is shown by his stand on the issue of Kashmir.

“One naturally thought that he would offer a nonviolent solution to the Kashmir issue and raise his moral stature. But no! He proved to be a false prophet. Seervai has documented that nonviolence with him was a political weapon. (H. M. Seervai, Partition of India, Legend and Reality, Bombay, 1989, p 172-173). He sanctioned the use of armed forces and laid the foundation of Kashmir problem which continues to haunt the subcontinent till today” (Sangat Singh, The Sikhs in History, 4th ed., 2001, p 258.)

According to Seervai, in a meeting with Viceroy Lord Wavell on August 27 1946, Gandhi thumped the table and said, “If India wants bloodbath, she shall have it and that if bloodbath was necessary, it would come about in spite of nonviolence.” Wavell was dumbfounded at these words coming from the mouth of “apostle” of nonviolence.

Gandhi was a very cunning man. He was not satisfied with the title of “apostle of peace”, he also wanted to project himself as a holy man, which for a Hindu required the practice of celibacy. He was a married man and proclaimed to be celibate at a relatively young age under forty. However, he used to test his celibacy by asking young girls to lie over him to find out whether he was in full control of his sexual feelings. I leave up to psychologists and psychiatrists to analyze what was in Gandhi’s mind and what happened to the emotions of those poor girls! He was always surrounded by women.

So what is Gandhi’s legacy to mankind?

The obvious one is the partition of subcontinent into “Hindu India” and “Muslim Pakistan and Bangladesh”. These three nations are a “living hell” for minorities. For example, India which claims with pride to be the biggest democracy in the world has killed more Indians in the last fifty years than the British colonists killed in 300 years. More than 95% of those killed by Hindu governments are Christians, Muslims, Sikhs and Dalits (Untouchables). While the populations of these countries are groaning under the weight of poverty, hunger, illiteracy, ignorance and disease, India and Pakistan have built nuclear weapons. The next nuclear war will most probably be fought over the disputed territory of Kashmir in spite of the fact that neither India nor Pakistan has ever asked the Kashmiris what they want.

That Hindus are peace loving people and coexist peacefully with non-Hindus is also not true.

When Taliban destroyed Lord Buddha’s statue in Afghanistan, there were worldwide protests against this heinous crime against humanity. The most vociferous demonstrations and protests were held in India. However, how little did the Hindu mobs realize that the first damage to the statue was done by Hindu rulers of Afghanistan during the frenzy of Hindu revival? Buddhism flourished as a major religion in India for several centuries. During the Hindu revival, Buddhists were given three choices like Jews and Muslims during the Spanish Inquisition. Either convert or leave the country. Large number of Buddhists fled to neighboring countries. Those who resisted were killed, Buddhist monasteries were destroyed, monks were murdered, and nuns were raped. Buddhist literature was burned and their religious centers were converted into Hindu centers. The famous place in Bihar State where Lord Buddha is supposed to have received his light (knowledge) is still under the control of Hindus in spite of the protests of international Bhuddist community.

The “myth makers” keep repeating that Hindus have lived peacefully with Muslims, Christians and others for hundreds of years. What they don’t tell you is that during that period Muslims or the British ruled over the Indian territory. But look at the attitude of Hindus towards non-Hindus when Hindus were the rulers? During the revival of Hinduism they eradicated Buddhism from the land of its birth. All other progressive movements, which opposed the caste system were either crushed or subverted.

Immediately after independence in 1947, the so-called secular and liberal Hindu rulers lead by Jawahar Lal Nehru adopted an Indian Constitution, declaring “Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains” as Hindus with the stroke of a pen. Sikhs have been protesting against this heinous crime ever since. No Hindu leader worth the name has ever protested against this abominable injustice to the minorities. Imagine! How would the minorities react if the US Congress were to pass a law declaring all minorities as Christians?

The word Hindu is not found in any Hindu religious text or any other ancient writing. People who lived on the western side of Hindu Kush (killers of Hindus) mountains gave this name to the natives of India. The word Hindu means black, slave, robber, thief and a waylayer.

From my discussions with Americans about the caste system over the years, I have the impression that most of them think that caste system is like segregation or apartheid. Caste system may look like segregation or apartheid on the surface, but if one were to scratch the surface one would find that the Brahmnical caste system is the worst oppressive and exploitative system that exists on planet earth. Slavery and segregation in America and apartheid in South Africa have ended in a relatively short period, but the heinous caste system, which has been practiced in India for thousands of years, is still going strong. It is because the caste system was invented, taught, practiced and ordained by the Brahmnical (Hindu) religion.

Under segregation and apartheid the black people were denied their rights and had very few opportunities for advancement in comparison to white people. However, a black person under those circumstances could become a doctor, a teacher, and a minister or choose whatever occupation was available to them. Whereas the caste is stamped on you the moment you are born. There was no escape from this watertight multistory building with no stairs or ladder. You are born and die in the same caste, no matter how good or bad a person you are.

For example, a person born in a scavenger’s family would also be a scavenger in spite of his great intelligence. He couldn’t choose any other occupation. So a scavenger’s descendents remained scavengers for thousands of years. This destroyed the creativity of the Indian population. No wonder the Hindu civilization, which is as old as the Chinese civilization has made insignificant contribution to the development of human society in comparison to the Chinese civilization.

It is a mistake to think that Nazism was the product of Hitler’s sick mind. The roots of Nazism lie in the Hindu caste system. European colonists were intrigued by the Hindu caste system. They were astonished how Brahmins, who formed about 5% of India’s population, were able to exploit the rest of Indians for thousands of years by asserting their caste and racial superiority. The British used the same Brahmnical strategy, they proclaimed their racial and intellectual superiority over Indians to control their vast Empire in India. At the pinnacle of British rule, there were only about 200,000 British personnel in India. Who you think managed the Empire? They were the brown-Englishmen (subjugated Indians) who managed the Empire.

European writers like Max Muler were also fascinated by the Hindu caste system. They admired the way the Brahmins maintained the caste and racial superiority over thousands of years. Why shouldn’t the Europeans assert their racial and intellectual superiority the same way over black, brown, tan and yellow people? So people like Max Muler planted the seeds of racial superiority on the European soil. Others like him nurtured the seedlings, and the plants came into full blossom under Hitler. It is no coincidence that the Nazis used swastika, a propitious Brahmin symbol, as the emblem of the Nazi party.

I am willing to debate these issues with any one, anywhere, and on any stage.

Authors Note: An article Gandhi as a racist by Dr. Velu Anamlai (USA) published in Sikh Virsa, June 1997, was consulted for writing this letter.)

The Amazing Indian Army

January 17, 2013

Area 14/8

Though western media have a soft corner for India,as they consider it a largest democracy of the world and a secular state,reports abound that India’s security forces use torture and rape as a weapon to punish,intimidate,humiliate and degrade the victims in Kashmir and elsewhere in India. The pattern of Army’s misconduct is also glaringly observed when contingent of Indian army performs duties as UN peacekeeping mission abroad. In Congo, army personnel raped women that resulted in unlawful pregnancies. Twelve officers and thirty-nine soldiers were probed in Meerut,Uttar Pradesh,India,for sexually abusing the local women and for having fathered children while on UN peacekeeping mission in Congo in 2008. UN Commission found DNA evidence of children born to Congo women,having distinct Indian features. UN authorities are putting pressure on Indian Government to investigate the issue. Unfortunately Indian media insinuated Pakistani spy agency “ISI” to protect a career officer of Indian Army employed as Instructor in Bangladesh Staff College who was caught with his pants down with a Bangladeshi woman by some vigilant eye of camera.

The Indian soldiers had exploited the war torn women of Congo,and sexual abuse cases reached into hundreds. These girls and women were raped either through coercion or under deceit of food items and Indian-made cosmetics. Indian brigade commander in Congo accused Pakistani soldiers of such violations to avert the blame. UN authorities ordered DNA tests. UN authorities informed Indian government and asked for legal proceeding against these officers and soldiers. Indian efforts of accusing Pakistani soldiers were refuted due to DNA test. Following the allegations,the regiment in which the officers and soldiers were serving was recalled from the Congo and attached to the Western Command headquarters. Earlier too,there have been allegations of sexual abuse and graft against Indian Army officers and soldiers serving in UN missions in the Congo. In March 2008,three officers were charged with sexual abuse of a local woman while on a holiday in South Africa. In 2007,there were allegations that some of the Indian peacekeepers had exchanged food and information with the locals for obtaining gold from rebels in North Kivu in the Congo.

However,there is no parallel to the atrocities perpetrated on Kashmiris in Indian Held Kashmir where Indian soldiers’ stories of rape and murder abound. In order to suppress the freedom movement in IOK Indian Army used religious prejudice and hatred against Muslims while using rape as a weapon against Kashmiri women,whereas the Indian authorities turned a blind to their heinous crimes. Hence,the habitual criminals not only got away with their crime against Muslim women in IOK but also got promotions and postings of their choices. Rape by Army officers/soldiers was taken as part of accepted military norm/culture. On 29th May,2009,two girls Aasiya and Neelofar were reportedly raped and murdered by Indian soldiers in Shopian. The government almost shelved the case after the concocted inquiry report stated that Aasiya slipped and fell in the ravine and Neelofar tried to save her,but both drowned in the ravine. On 29th May 2011,a complete shutdown was observed in Shopian town in Indian occupied Kashmir to mark the second anniversary of rape and murder of two Kashmiri women,Aasiya and Neelofar by Indian soldiers.

With the release of its 2009 country report on India,the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) had placed India on its “Watch List” in August 2009. USCIRF said India earned the Watch List designation due to the disturbing increase in communal violence against religious minorities – specifically Christians in Orissa in 2008 and Muslims in Gujarat in 2002 – and the largely inadequate response from the Indian government to protect the rights of religious minorities. “It is extremely disappointing that India,which has a multitude of religious communities,has done so little to protect and bring justice to its religious minorities” said Leonard Leo,USCIRF chair. “USCIRF’s India chapter was released in August 2009 to mark the first anniversary of the anti-Christian violence in Orissa.” In 2008 in Orissa,the murder of Swami Saraswati by Maoist rebels in Kandhamal sparked a prolonged and destructive campaign targeting Christians in Orissa,resulting in attacks against churches and individuals. But the West rather played down the gory incident.

Nevertheless,some human rights organizations have been exposing Indian soldiers and officers involved in sex scandals and rapes. Since the Indian government crackdown against Kashmiris in the disputed territory of Kashmir began in earnest in January 1990,after Kashmiris had started struggle in 1989. Rape by Indian security forces most often occurs during crackdowns,cordon-and-search operations during which men are held for identification in parks or schoolyards while security forces search their homes. In these situations,the security forces frequently engage in collective punishment against the civilian population by assaulting residents and burning their homes. Rape has also occurred frequently during reprisal attacks on civilians. Women who are the victims of rape are often stigmatised,and their testimony and integrity impugned. Social attitudes which cast the woman and not her attacker,as the guilty party often enjoys clout with the judiciary,making rape cases difficult to prosecute and leaving women unwilling to press charges.

According to a 1994 United Nations publication from 1990 to 1996,882 women were reportedly gang-raped by security forces in Jammu and Kashmir. A study done by Medecins Sans Frontieres in mid-2005 revealed that Kashmiri women we among the worst sufferers of sexual violence in the world. It further mentioned at since the beginning of the armed struggle in Kashmir in 1989,sexual violence was routinely perpetrated on Kashmiri women,with 11.6 per cent of respondents saying they were victims of sexual abuse. Interestingly,the figure is much higher than that of Sierra Leone,Sri Lanka and Chechnya. UNO had accused Indian army in writing of rape of Congolese women by its officers and soldiers. Previously such accusations were raised by Kashmiri and Indian minorities but were never listened to. Nobody sympathized with innocent women of Kashmir and minorities whose honor was targeted deliberately by Indian army personnel. International media withheld such news of rape and murder because the West has interest in the market of plus one-billion population.

In Sri Lanka

The IPKF was soon to earn the acronym – Innocent People Killing Force and a series of encounters will remind Jaffna Tamils how wonderful India had treated the Tamil people. Indian reply by Brig Kahlon for rape charges were “the Indian army are not angels….rape happens even in the West”. These are just a few of the examples of IPKF’s war crimes in Sri Lanka against the Tamil people India is now so concerned about.

  • 12 October 1987 – IPKF attacks village of Kokuvil killing over 40 civilians’ in retaliation for loosing 29 Indian commandoes at the Jaffna University raid.
  • 21 October 1987 – Deepavali,68 innocent Tamils shot and killed by IPKF inside Jaffna Hospital including hospital doctors,nurses,staff and patients. Dr. Sivapathasuntharan who entered the hospital the next day was also killed by the IPKF.
  • 21 November 1987 – Trincomalee,a IPKF soldier kills 7 civilians and injures 4 by indiscriminate firing.
  • August 1989 – Velvettiturai,64 Sri Lankan Tamil civilians killed by the IPKF.
  • More than a 100 Tamil civilian bodies were found in Chunnakam,Mallakam,Uduvil,Manipay,Maruthanamadam and Inuvil – all deaths attributed to the IPKF.
  • Amnesty International Report 1988 (Jan-Dec 1987) quotes local magistrate in North Sri Lanka finding seven cases of rape by IPKF. http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA37/030/1990/en/1520f8d1-17d4-…
  • A book on India’s war crimes against Tamil civilians was released in April 2011 in New Delhi titled “In the Name of Peace:IPKF Massacres of Tamils in Sri Lanka” documented by the Northeast Secretariat on Human Rights (NESoHR) and published by the Delhi Tamil Students Union. The book covers 12 massacres committed by the IPKF.

We do not deny the cultural affinities shared between India and Sri Lanka,we do not deny the close ties that have existed over centuries but inspite of such ties India has gone on to commit the unthinkable upon a nation that has done India no harm.

Indian atrocities in Kashmir

“As the conflict in Kashmir enters its fourth year,central and state authorities have done little to stop the widespread practice of rape by Indian security forces in Kashmir. Indeed,when confronted with the evidence of rape,time and again the authorities have attempted to impugn the integrity of the witnesses,discredit the testimony of physicians or simply deny the charges everything except order a full inquiry and prosecute those responsible for rape”.
(Asia Watch and Physicians for Human Rights,May 09,1993)


“Since January 1990,rape by Indian occupation forces has become more frequent. Rape most often occurs during crackdowns,cordon and search operations during which men are held for identification in parks or schoolyards while security forces search their homes. In raping them,the security forces are attempting to punish and humiliate the entire community.”
(‘Pain in Kashmir:A Crime of War’issued jointly by Asia Watch and Physicians for Human Rights,May 09,1993)

“By beginning TV cameras and prohibiting the presence in Kashmir of the International Red Cross and of human rights organization,the Indian authorities have tried to keep Kashmir out of the news.”
(`Kashmiri crisis at the flash point’,The Washington Times,by columnist Cord Meyer,April 23,1993)

“(On February 23,1991),at least 23 women were reportedly raped in their homes at gunpoint (at Kunan Poshpora in Kashmir). Some are said to have been gang-raped,others to have been raped in front of their children …The youngest victim was a girl of 13 named Misra,the oldest victim,name Jana,was aged 80″.
(Amnesty International,March 1992)

“The most common torture methods are severe beatings,sometimes while the victim is hung upside down,and electric shocks. People have also been crushed with heavy rollers,burned,stabbed with sharp instruments,and had objects such as chilies or thick sticks forced into their rectums. Sexual mutilation has been reported”.
(Amnesty International,March 1992)

“The worst outrages by the CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force) have been frequent gang rapes of all women in Muslim villages,followed by the execution of the men”.
(Eric Margolis,The Ottawa Citizen,December 8,1991)

“While army troops dragged men from their homes for questioning in the border town of Kunan Pushpura,scores of women say they were raped by soldiers….a pregnant Kashmiri woman,who was raped and kicked,gave birth to a son with a broken arm.”
(Melinda Liuin,Newsweek,June 24,1991)
[Anthony Wood and Ron MaCullagh of the Sundav Observer (June 02,1992) estimated that over 500 Indian army men were involved in this orgy of rape and plunder in Kunan Pushpura.]

“The security forces have entered hospitals,beaten patients,hit doctors,entered operating theaters,smashed instruments. Ambulances have been attacked,curfew passes are confiscated.”
(Asia Watch,May 1991)

“Subjugated,humiliated,tortured and killed by the 650,000-strong Indian army,the people of Kashmir have been living through sheer hell for more than a year,the result of an increasingly brutal campaign of state repression. India hides behind its carefully-crafted image of “non-violence”and presents itself in international forums as a model of democracy and Pluralism. Yet,it is unable to stand up the scrutiny of even its admirers. All journalists,especially television crews,were expelled from the Valley. With no intrusive cameras to record the brutalities of the Indian forces,the world has been kept largely in the dark.” (The Toronto Star,January 25,1991)

“Young girls were now being raped systematically by entire (Indian) army units rather than by a single soldier as before. Girls are taken to soldier’s camps and held naked in their tents for days on end. Many never return home….Women are strung up naked from trees and their breast lacerated with knives,as the (Indian) soldiers tell them that their breast will never give milk again to a newborn militant. Women are raped in front of their husbands and children,or paraded naked through villages and beaten on the breasts.”
(The Independent,September 18,1990)

Atrocities will further fuel Naxalism

Praful Bidwai

The killing of 20 civilians by the Central Reserve Police Force in Bijapur in Central India’s Chhattisgarh will go down as a black mark in the history of Indian counter -insurgency. All evidence suggests that the CRPF gravely mistook a village meeting to plan a seed festival for a Maoist gathering and indiscriminately fired on it.

Among the victims were two 15-year-old boys,a 12-year-old girl,and a professional drum player -hardly fit to be confused for armed Naxalites. Although the CRPF troops’bullet injuries remain unexplained,and four of those killed allegedly had police records,nothing suggests that Maoists ambushed the troops,who then fired in self-defence.

Even firing in self-defence cannot be indiscriminate. Besides,there’s evidence of sexual assault and mutilation of dead bodies. This suggests collective punishment -which is categorically unacceptable.

Equally deplorable is the butchery’s rationalisation that the CRPF has no “system of segregating”guerrillas from civilians during gunfights,and Chief Minister Raman Singh’s argument that Maoists use civilians as human shields,and are responsible for their deaths.

However,the present case appears less an instance of unintended damage than deliberate targeting. The attacking party followed the “fire-first-and-ask-questions-later”approach.

The incident emphasises the growing disconnect between the people and counterinsurgency troops,who have no comprehension of their language,culture and sensitivities,and whom they often consider inferior

In Chhattisgarh,Adivasi identities,rooted in an ancient civilisation,remain strong. It is only since the 1980s that they have been exposed to large-scale intrusion by external predatory interests like forest contractors and the mining mafia. The tribals have over the years lost land and access to forests.

The state fails to comprehend this as it pushes destructive mining and industrial projects,thus increasing the Adivasis’alienation. It hasn’t even invested a fraction of what it spends on the paramilitary forces in addressing Adivasi grievances or helping its counterinsurgency troops understand the roots of tribal alienation amidst which Maoism thrives.

E.N. Rammohan -a distinguished former Border Security Force chief with much counterinsurgency experience -puts his finger on the nub:”Give land to the tiller and forests back to the tribals. Plus,bring down the vast gap between the rich and the poor� and the Maoists would be on the wane.”

In Bijapur,the CRPF was in the first place wrong to open fire. The proper objective of a counterinsurgency operation is not to kill rebels,but to bring them to justice by establishing their culpability for specific crimes,and to isolate them politically from the population.

This civilian butchery has created fear and insecurity among the people. Many are planning to move out of their villages into neighbouring Andhra Pradesh. It will take generations for their scars to heal.

Politically,the incident is a huge victory for the Maoist argument that the Indian state is irredeemably anti-people and brutal. Democracy is a mere fa�ade. It must be overthrown through an armed revolution.

The only way to redeem this situation is to award exemplary punishment to those responsible for the killings. India has paid a heavy price for not bringing the culprits of past counterinsurgency excesses to book.

Take the Chittisingpura massacre of 2000,in which 36 Sikhs were killed. Indian military forces killed five innocent locals at Pathribal in Anantnag district,claiming they were the culprits. Their bodies were dressed up in military uniforms and set on fire in an extraordinarily shoddy cover-up attempt. Officers were decorated and monetarily rewarded for this heinous crime. They compounded their offence by substituting the victims’DNA samples with fake ones.

The incident still rankles in Kashmir. Yet,nobody has been put on trial for it -although the Supreme Court has strongly refuted the army’s misguided invocation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act to reject that demand.

The latest Chhattisgarh killings raise serious questions about the anti-Maoist campaign underway in nine states. It has come in for scathing criticism from an Expert Group of the Planning Commission.

The Group holds:”The methods chosen by the government to deal with the Maoist phenomenon [have] increased the people’s distrust of the police and consequent unrest. Protest against police harassment is itself a major instance of unrest frequently leading to further violence by the police� which in effect triggers a second round of the spiral.”

In many parts of India,the state has been captured by the rich or become dysfunctional and predatory upon the people. Notes the Expert Group:”One of the attractions of the Naxalite movement is that it does provide protection to the weak against the powerful.. One doesn’t have to romanticise the Maoists to recognise this.

Green Hunt only pays lip service to the official “two-pronged”approach of “development”and “law-and-order,”or simultaneously redressing popular grievances and using force. In practice,it overwhelmingly relies on brute force without recognising that the insurgency feeds on Adivasi dispossession and brutalisation.

The official premise that Maoism is India’s “greatest internal security threat”is profoundly mistaken. The Maoists aren’t about to capture power or destroy India’s unity. They pose a civil law-and-order problem,which should be tackled by normal police methods -good intelligence-gathering,crime control,painstaking evidence collection,and prosecution of those instigating or practising violence.

By contrast,social cohesion is gravely threatened by the communal Right,including the Bharatiya Janata Party and its associates,some of whom have embraced terrorism,but against whom the Indian state doesn’t act.

The state must heed the counsel of counterinsurgency experts like Robert Thompson. “Hardly,if ever,has a counter-insurgency campaign been won strictly by waging war. Military action has an important role in overcoming guerrillas,but the philosophy espoused by the guerrillas must also be defeated and this requires a well-reasoned combination of political reform,civic action and education of the population.”

As Mr. Rammohan puts it,a counterinsurgency operation must be “scrupulously legal.”This is a precondition for its popular acceptance,and also for the state’s legitimacy. When will India’s rulers learn this?

Atrocities on Sikh Women in Punjab

“If any action occurs in this village,every single male is going to be taken out and shot. Then we’re going to take all the women to our camp and there we’re going to create a new breed for Punjab.”

Brig. RP Sinha addressing assembled Sikh villagers on March 8,1991,International Women’s Day

And this was the way International Women’s Day was celebrated in Punjab. The untold story of the Sikh Resistance Movement is the story of Sikh women. It is a feature of Punjabi culture that atrocities on women are rarely reported and remain hidden. Families feel ashamed to speak of the treatment women received at the hands of Indian Security Forces,but this story must be told.

Role of Sikh Women in the Movement

Many Sikh women participated in the Sikh resistance movement as fighters. Like their sisters from past ages,Sikh women joined their brothers in the fight for freedom. Many brave Singhnees fought side by side with their Singhs and attained Shaheedee. The examples of Shaheeds Bhai Harvinderjit Singh Taini Babbar and Bibi Manjeet Kaur Babbar (their story will be posted later),Bhai Pritpal Singh and Bibi Harjeet Kaur,etc,are notable.

Sikh women often worked as messengers for Sikh Resistance groups as well as preparing hideouts and serving tired Sikh fighters.

But unfortunately,many Sikh women were also the target of the bloody thirsty Indian Security forces. Sikh women were ruthlessly tortured,not only physically but also mentally. They were used as tools to force the surrender of Sikh fighters who were their relatives and also as a means of humiliating families. When Sikh women were arrested with their husbands,the husbands were often forced to watch the rape of their wives. Rape was used as an interrogation tool.

Humiliation:A common form of torture used on Sikhs

The Indian Forces also began a program of “shudhee karan”,which was a code name for the rape of Sikh women. They joked that the offspring of their rapes would change the genetic makeup of the Sikh community and they would kill the Resistance in this way. Many rape victims took their own lives,unable to live with the ongoing humiliation at the hands of the Indian police.

The first example of the atrocities heaped upon Sikh women is that of Bibi Amandeep Kaur.

Shaheed Bibi Amandeep Kaur

Bibi Amandeep Kaur

Bibi Amandeep Kaur was the sister of Bhai Harpinder Singh Goldy aka. Pamma of the Khalistan Commando Force. She was only twenty when she was arrested,tortured,raped and then killed by the Punjab Police.

Bibi Amandeep Kaur,before her Shaheedee was on the run but had the courage to tell her story to human rights workers.

Here is her story in her own words,shortly before she was murdered [I have divided the sections for easier reading]:

Marriage &Arrest

“Jaswinder Singh Sraa son of Surjeet Singh of Jassowal village Ludhiana dst. Was born and brought up on the UK. He presently lives in Mississauga Canada.

He came to India on October 12,1991 for marriage on October 24th. We along with my father Jaswant Sngh,village Headman Bhag Singh and Member of Panchyaat Meet Singh went to the office of the sub-registrar,Rampura Phul,for registration of the marriage. As we came out of the courtroom,the SHO of Phul,picked up three of us,me,my husband and my father. We were taken to Phul Police Station where SSP Kahlon,SP Mohkam Singh,DSP Aulah and SP of Operations were present.

Inhuman Torture

The SSP on seeing us,promptly ordered that my two male relations be stripped naked in my presence. He then took out the picture of his slain son and addressing them remarked that he had taken the revenge for the murder (by dishonouring me,the sister of an underground Sikh activist).

Kahlon then started abusing my husband and father. He took hold of a lathi to beat the two. It was then the turn of his subordinates who beat us with their leather belts. The SSP ordered that my husband and father slap each other.

After this cruel exercise,we were blindfolded. I was relieved of my two wedding rings,a pair of ear-rings and one golden chain. From my husband,the SSP snatched $500 and a bracelet of 3.5 tolas and his wedding ring. My father was similarly robbed of Rs. 2500. I and my husband were put into our van PCL-8433. We heard the SSP directing his staff to set our house on fire and bring the wife and younger daughter of Jaswant Singh (my mother and sister) to the police station for similar treatment.

After Kahlon left,we were brought back to the police station. While my husband and father were put in the lock-up,I was kept out for maltreatment [i.e. for sexual assault].

Early next morning we three were taken to Sardulgarh by our van. On October 27,my mother Surjeet Kaur was brought to us. She told us her story of dishonour [rape],torture and maltreatment. She was kept in a Rampura police station and at the head office of CIA Bathinda.

In our absence,the police from Rampura Phul ransacked our house and removed all our belongings. The village panchayat was not let anywhere near the house. No seizure report was prepared and handed over to the panchayat or anyone else.

12 Days of Terror

I,my mother and father were kept in Sardulgarh police station for 12 days. But my husband was moved to Phul police station on October 29. The SSP was present there. He ordered my husband’s release on October 30,telling him to forget about his marriage to me and leave India immediately,which he did the next day. In the meantime,the village panchayat came to know of our detention at Sardulgarh and they came there to rescue us but we were removed stealthily to Boha police station.

At Boha,I was not given even water for washing under SSP’s order. We were maltreated there [the woman was reluctant to give details of the mistreatment].

After eight days,the three of us were removed from Boha to CIA Bathinda. My mother and I were released from three weeks of illegal detention. My father was kept in CIA Bathinda and at Phul and was produced in a court on November 30. A case was registered against him.

KP Gill ‘Helpless’

While we were in custody,Jaswinder Singh,who happens to be brother of my father,telephoned DGP KP Gill at telephone No. 753-546840 requesting him to intervene but Gill told him that Kahlon did not listen to his advice.

We have learnt that the SSP had picked us up because on October 23,1991,some millitants had abducted six traders of Phul and the police suspected my 16-year-old brother Harpinder Singh Goldy aka. Pamma’s hand in the abduction. My brother had gone underground in the wake of police harassment in August 1991 when he was studying in class 10 + 1 .

I have gone underground to escape further humiliation and torture because the SSP Harkishan Kahlon is after me,for unknown reasons. Because of the “treatment”given to my husband,he has left me and does not wish to keep me as his wife any longer.”

Shaheedee

Bibi Amandeep Kaur stayed in hiding until January 21 1992. The police then played a sinister game. They asked he to return to her house,returning all her property and insisted they would not harass her any more. They also bailed her father the day before. Jaswant Singh did not trust the police so he did not return home. Amandeep Kaur did. When her mother was out,two gun men with masked faces came on behalf of SSP Bathinda,Kahlon,and shot Bibi Amandeep Kaur dead on January 21st at 7:30pm.

Bhai Harpinder Singh Gold,brother of Bibi Amandeep Kaur,at age 18,also later sacrificed his life for the cause of Sikh freedom.

The Story of Bibi Gurmeet Kaur

Bibi Gurmeet Kaur was a student of the 10 grade at village Lehrkaa near Kathoo Nangal. Bibi Gurmeet Kaur and her older sister Bibi Parmjeet Kaur had gone to visit their father Swarn Singh and brother Satnam Singh who were in prison for giving shelter to Sikh Resistance fighters. They had returned home on April 21,1989 when the Indian police raided their home and arrested Bibi Parmjeet Kaur. The police told villagers that the Deputy Commissioner wanted to record her statement. Parmjeet Kaur was kept in custody one night and then returned home. Next Gurmeet Kaur was arrested and kept for two nights. She too was released but threatened with dire circumstances if she told what had happened to her. Gurmeet Kaur did not remain silent and recounted what had happened to her.

When Gurmeet Kaur was brought to the police station,she was stripped naked and tortured in the verandah of the police station in plain view of all the police officers. That night,the police blindfolded her and locked her in a room. In that room,drunken Indian Police officers took turns raping her. Gurmeet Kaur fell unconscious and when she woke the next morning,she found herself covered in blood and stark naked.

The next day,Gurmeet Kaur was tortured again. The perverse and twisted police officers went so far as to put salt and chili peppers into Gurmeet Kaur’s private parts.

On April 24,when Gurmeet Kaur was released,she could not walk. She was taken to hospital for treatment by the villagers.

Other Cases

These cases are not unique. Gang Rapes and humiliation were common in Punjab. 19 year old Baljeet Kaur,sister of Sikh fighter Bhai Gurjeet Singh was also gang raped. Bibi Rachhpal Kaur was arrested for no reason but for having caught the eye of the police party and On September 5,1989 was gang raped by the Kali Das Sharma and other police officers.

The story of the treatment of Sikh women at the hands of Indian Security Forces is a long and sad one. I don’t know which cases to highlight and which to leave. Should I write about Sarbjit Kaur (14) and Salwinder Kaur (13) who were abducted while collecting clay for a school project and then gang raped and killed by Indian Police? Or should I write about the seven-year-old daughter of a Singh who was molested and then dismembered by the Police’s Poohla Nang? The list is endless.

The abuse of Sikh women was and is widespread in Punjab. Mothers,wives and children of Sikh fighters were considered legitimate targets. The butchers who were responsible for these tragedies are still in the police force today. They are now high ranking officers. And the abuse continues…

“Now Get Your Khalistan…”

Victim of Police Torture

Bhai Nirvair Singh was the Granthi of Gurdwara Shaheedaa(n),Amritsar. Bhai Nirvair Singh’s younger brother,Bhai Kulwant Singh was a Sikh Resistance Fighter and the police constantly raided their home in search of him. Finally,unable to locate Kulwant Singh,SSP Azhar Alam and his “Black Cats” shot Bhai Nirvair Singh to death. Bhai Nirvair Singh’s wife,Bibi Manjit Kaur,was with him at the time and ran to save herself. The police caught Bibi Manjit Kaur and badly beat her with their rifle butts. They let her live,but her ordeal was far from over.

On May 5,1988,the police again raided the house. Bhai Nirvair Singh’s youngest brother,Bhai Dilbagh Singh,a Granthi at Gurdwara Baba Bakala,was home but hid himself,fearing for his life. The police spotted him and without any warning,shot him dead. Bibi Manjit Kaur was still in the house when the police entered and they immediately began to beat her. They grabbed her by her hair and dragged her to the fields where the Indian Police tortured her for an hour and a half. When Bibi Manjit Kaur was almost senseless,they threw her on top of Bhai Dilbagh Singh’s dead body and laughed,”Now get your Khalistan…”. Bibi Manjit Kaur’s feet were so swollen from the torture that she could not walk for days. Her scalp also oozed blood from the repeated blows. Villagers who were witness to this scene were also beaten and told to keep their mouths shut. Harassment of their family and relatives continued.

Azhar Alam

Today,Azhar Alam is a high ranking official in the Vigilance Bureau of the Punjab Police. The man responsible for the brutal torture of thousands of innocent Sikh men and women has not been charged with any crime.

Bibi Gurdev Kaur &Bibi Gurmeet Kaur

Perhaps the most brutal of all Indian Police officials in Punjab was Batala’s Gobind Ram. Gobind Ram took sadistic pleasure in personally torturing Sikh prisoners and kept a vat filled with feces and urine that he force-fed to amritdhari Sikhs while saying,”You have drunk the amrit of Gobind Singh,now drink the amrit of Gobind Ram.”

Gobind Ram’s atrocities came to light nationwide when he ordered the arrest of Bibi Gurdev Kaur (wife of Bhai Kulwant Singh Babbar) and Bibi Gurmeet Kaur (wife of Bhai Mehal Singh). Both Singhs were underground at the time.

On August 21,1989,a van with tinted windows came and parked in front of the Parbhat Finance Company,Amritsar,where both Singhnees worked. Six armed men got out of the van and approached Bibi Gurmeet Kaur and Bibi Gurdev Kaur,ordering them to get in the van. When the Bibis demanded to know who they were,one man identified himself as Lakhwinder Lakha,ASI. He said that the police party had come from Batala Sadr police station and they would have to come with him. When the Singhnees began to make a scene,the police threw them into the van. Bibi Gurmeet Kaur and Bibi Gurdev Kaur’s dastaars were ripped off and used to tie their arms and their kirpans were also taken off.

The van arrived at the notorious Beco Torture Centre in Batala at 7pm. When the Singhnees went inside,they saw SSP Gobind Ram beating a Sikh youth with a rod. When he saw the two women enter,he immediately came towards them and hit Gurdev Kaur in the stomach with his rod. Bibi Gurdev Kaur collapsed onto the ground and began to bleed from her private parts. The bleeding did not stop for several days. Gobind Ram kept hitting Bibi Gurdev Kaur in the stomach without saying a word for five minutes. He then gave the rod to another Inspector whom he ordered to hit Bibi Gurdev Kaur in the joints.

Gobind Ram next moved to Bibi Gurmeet Kaur whom he threw to the ground and began to kick in the chest. The next torture to begin was the “ghotna” where a heavy log is rolled on the thighs with men standing on top,which results in ripped muscles. In Bibi Gurdev Kaur’s own words,”Then they put a heavy roller on my thighs and made a few policemen stand on it,while others rotated it. I kept on screaming but they hit me with belts and kept on asking me the whereabouts of my husband Kulwant Singh.”

Both women were severely tortured for two days. Gobind Ram kept demanding to know where Bhai Kulwant Singh and Bhai Mehal Singh were. The Bibis kept repeating that they did not know,but Gobind Ram was not satisfied. They were tortured until they fell unconscious. They were then revived and tortured again.

When Bibi Gurdev Kaur was nearing her death,the police secretly took her to the government hospital and left her there. Gurmeet Kaur’s right leg was paralysed and both Singhnees had been kept awake since their arrest. Someone was called from the outside to massage their limbs so they could regain some sensation again. Both women could not walk but were forced to do so. In the hospital,a merciful lady doctor took care of Gurdev Kaur and also informed her family.

News of all this reached the media and all political religious and social organizations condemned Gobind Ram’s actions. When finally Gurmeet Kaur refused to hand over any Singh,she was threatened with being killed. By now though,because the press had gotten wind of the arrest,she was indicted in a false case and sent to jail. After some time,she too was released.

Because Bibi Gurdev Kaur received the best care possible,she was saved from death,but for the rest of her life she would face health problems.

Human Rights organizations condemned Gobind Ram for his brutal treatment of these two women. He claimed that no torture had occurred and both were kept in a “Guest House”. KP Gill,the Director General of Punjab Police announced,”the reports against SSP Batala,Gobind Ram by members of Panchyats and Sarpanches (community leaders) were false. There is no truth in them. This was propoganda against the police officers. This was verified after investigations. There were such reports against other honest and hardworking police officers [as well]”

When no action was taken against Gobind Ram,and he continued to torture and maim at will,the Singhs took it upon themselves to finish this rabid dog. Gobind Ram was killed on January 10,1990 in a massive bombing.

KP Gill:Super Cop or Sexual Predator?

KP Gill

KP Gill,ex-Director General of Punjab Police,is thought to have single handedly crushed the Khalistan movement in Punjab. He has been given the title of “Super Cop” by Indian media despite having unleashed a wave of terror on the Sikhs that was not even seen in the days of the Mughals. Torture methods were so grotesque and brutal that they cannot be described.

Gill was known to the Sikhs of Punjab as a drunk who also preyed on helpless women. Although Gill is proclaimed “Super Cop” in India and considered a great hero,the fact that he has been convicted for sexual assault is usually ignored.

In 1988,KP Gill was attending a party to celebrate Operation Black Thunder (an assault on Sree Darbaar Sahib Amrtisar). At this party,in plain view of all attendees,KP Gill sexually assaulted Indian Administrative Service officer Rupen Deol Bajaj. Bajaj was not helpless like most victims and instead of forgetting the incident,filed a police report.

Other officals spoke with Bajaj and asked her to withdraw the case since Gill was a hero in the fight against the Sikh Resistance but despite all this,she persisted. According to one report,”The government immediately took sides and tried to squelch or delay the court case. It also took petty action against Ms. Bajaj by making her a low-ranking official,stopping her mail,taking her off of mailing lists,removing her from government telephone books,etc”

Finally,in 1996,the butcher of Punjab,KP Gill was convicted of sexual assault. Though he was initially sentenced to three months in prison,the sentence was reduced to three years supervised probation (later further reduced to one year,un-supervised probation). He was also ordered to pay Rupen Deol Bajaj Rs. 2 lakh and pay Rs. 50 000 in legal expenses.

If a high ranking officer could not escape being a victim of Gill’s lust,what to say of the thousands of poor Sikh women kept in dark cells without any charges and without any rights? This is the character of India’s hero,KP Gill,”Super Cop”

And The Abuse Continues Today…

Some argue that in the turmoil of Punjab,perhaps some excesses were committed but times have changed. The Police have reformed and India now treats Sikhs fairly. A glance at the newspapers is enough to dispel that belief. The following story appeared in the Chandigarh Tribune on September 27,2003 http://www.tribuneindia.com/2003/20030927/chd.htm

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Woman alleges inhuman torture by police

Our Correspondent

Karamjit Kaur shows injury marks on her leg. – Tribune photo by Pankaj Sharma

Chandigarh,September 26

An another incident of brutal torture came to light when a 20-year-old girl,Karamjit Kaur,who was rescued by the Warrant Officer of the Punjab and Haryana High Court,today alleged that she was subjected to inhuman treatment and was asked to remove her clothes by the Punjab Police personnel at a press conference organised by the NGO Lawyers for Human Rights International here today.

“Five persons including two women,who had been allegedly subjected to third degree torture for several days by the Punjab Police were rescued by the Warrant Officer of the Punjab and Haryana High Court yesterday. These five persons were suspected to be involved in a murder case by the police. The five persons who were released included – Karamjit Kaur,Tirath Kaur,Sahib Singh,Gurdev Singh and Gurmit Singh,” informed Mr Arunjeev Singh Walia,Press Secretary.

Showing torture marks on her body,the victim while addressing scribes,said she was detained at Nabha police station for several days and been tortured. She was even ordered to remove her clothes by police constables,the victim alleged.

Narrating her tale of woe,she said police constables,after taking liquor usually interrogated her in the midnight. Even if a woman constable was called most of the time she stayed outside the room during her interrogation. The victim further added that:”I can not reveal the details whatever happened to me was worse than a hell.”

She further added that “she was subjected to inhuman third degree torture twice by pulling her legs apart in 180 degree and also beaten up with an iron rod in between her legs and two police men putting pressure on that rod.

“I was also threatened of liquidation if I did not disclose the truth and was also molested by the policemen”,the victim further said. Similarly,her mother said:”It was difficult to see my husband,son and daughter to be subjected to third degree torture by the police.”

When contacted the SHO of the police station concerned denied that they were subjected to third degrees torture. He said that all five of them were called at police station only for a day. Thereafter they were not traceable.
The General Secretary of the NGO,Mr Navkiran Singh,who had moved a petition in the high court for the release of victims said a Warrant Officer had secured the release five victims from the illegal custody of police station Kotwali,Nabha,Patiala district on September 25. He also informed that the high court had also ordered the medical examination of the victims. The Chairman of the NGO,Mr Amar Singh Chahal,demanded a CBI inquiry into the case.

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How many cases continue to go unreported?

The Khalsa once saved thousands of abducted Hindu women from being molested and sold by the Afghans. Why can’t we even save our own now? Our sisters continue to suffer in Punjab. And the Panth continues its long slumber…

A discussion on the atrocities Sikh women suffered in Punjab would not be complete without a discussion on what Sikh widows and their children continue to endure today. They have been forgotten by most in the Panth. Those Singhs that sacrificed their lives for the Sikh Cause must have thought that the Panth would take care of their families after they had been martyred. Sadly,this has not happened. And now,many say that no future generation will be willing to make the same sacrifices seeing the way families that were left behind in this chapter of the Sikh struggle continue to be neglected and live in poverty.

15-Year-Old Harpreet Kaur

By mid-1992,the Indian Police in Punjab had lost all sense of morality and considered human rights to be a joke. On June 25,1992,15-year-old Harpreet Kaur RaNo was stopped while riding her bicycle in Amritsar’s Ghio Mandi.

Harpreet Kaur was very interested in the Sikh struggle and used to consider the Sikh fighters her brothers. When the newspaper would print a notice about the Shahidi and bhog of a Sikh fighter,she would cut out their picture and keep it in her purse.

The police decided to search her purse. When the pictures were found,the excuse to arrest this young Sikh girl was found and she was taken directly to the famous torture center at BR Model School in Amritsar. She was put in the custody of Thanedar Darshan Lal who punished Harpreet Kaur for her “crime”. In that dark torture center,only Vahiguru knows what suffering and brutality Harpreet Kaur faced.

Despite her family’s best efforts to free her,the newspapers reported that Harpreet Kaur along with 3 other “terrorists” had been killed on June 27,1992 near Sultanvind. Her body was not given to the family. The family went to the cremation grounds at Durgiana Mandir and in one pile of ashes,Harpreet Kaur’s sister recognized a kaRa. The two sisters used to wear identical KaRas and the ashes were recognized as Harpreet Kaur’s. No justice was ever expected or delivered for this cold-blooded murder.

Final Wish…

Bibi Kulbir Kaur Dhami

Bibi Kulbir Kaur Dhami was kept in illegal custody by the Tarn Taran CIA staff for many months from 1993 to 1994. Miraculously,she survived. During that time she saw countless Singhs and Singhnees be tortured and then killed in fake encounters. In her own words,Bibi Kulbir Kaur recounts the final wish of one Bibi who was being taken to her death:

“Surinder Kaur was the principal of a Model School in Tarn Taran. Her school had approximately 400 children enrolled. Her husband was a former soldier and worked in a bank in Amritsar. It was perhaps July 1993 when he was arrested along with his wife and children and brought to the jail for having given shelter [to Sikh fighters]. With her was the son of a Pandit,Ramesh,who had become a Singh and had been arrested with his group [of fighters]. This group was tortured in front of us. They endured this cruelty for about a week and most of the group confessed to having participated in some actions,but this couple,[Bibi Surinder Kaur and her husband] were accused of having given the group shelter only.

Surinder Kaur kept begging that her body not be touched by any male police officer. She was kept with me for eight days in the women’s lockup. In front of me,she was interrogated four times a day. The male police officers would beat her with sticks and use the ghotna. Three or four policemen would stand on the ghotna. I myself saw them drag her around by the chest. This entire interrogation was conducted by SP Operation Khoobi Ram,DSP Gurmit Singh,Inspetor Ram Nath,and SI Tarlochan Singh. They are completely responsible for torturing and killing her (it’s another story that their orders were all coming from the top).

Four members of this group,along with Surinder Kaur’s husband were tortured for a week and then killed in a fake encounter which was reported to then newspapers. One of those was a police officer,Dalbir Singh,who had abandoned his job,but he was apparently spared. All this [the encounter] happened in front of him and he could be a witness.

At around 8pm,the police took Surinder Kaur away from me while beating her. Surinder Kaur was dragged away as she wept and called out my name. They threw her in a car. She was sobbing and screaming her final wish to me,”You have to take care of my child now…look after him…this is your responsibility now.” Surinder Kaur was killed that night. The police officials told me that she cried the entire time in the car and they told her to do paath after which they shot her. When she died,Surinder Kaur was wearing my suit and the police officials teased me that because my suit had gone in my place,I had been spared.”

Bibi Kulbir Kaur Dhami now runs the Gur Asra Trust for Sikh orphans in Mohali.

Widow of a “Terrorist”

The widows of Sikh “terrorists” have suffered terribly in the years since 1993. Widows like 18-year old Jasvir Kaur,who had been married to Sukhdev Singh Sukha of Babbar Khalsa International were forced by their poverty to marry much older men. Many began to do menial work to make ends meet.

The following interview appeared in “The Week”,a well known Indian Magazine on April 19,1998. Bibi Jasmeet Kaur is a Sikh hero. She was married to Bhai Satnam Singh Chheena of the Bhindranvala Tiger Force and was involved in the punishing of Comrade Hardev,a depraved police tout who was known to rape and kill with impunity.

Bhai Satnam Singh Chheena

INTERVIEW:JASMEET KAUR,WIDOW OF A TERRORIST

‘We feel abandoned by the community’

Jasmeet Kaur was widowed two years after she married Satnam Singh Chheena of the Bhindranwale Tigers Force of Khalistan in 1991. She lived underground for years,bore his two children while in hiding and is being tried in murder case. She is active in the Gur Aasra project. Excerpts from an interview:

How have people treated the families of militants after terrorism ended?

People started looking at us with suspicion and hatred. They blamed the terrorists and their families for the harassment by the police. They felt we women could have corrected our husbands. The behaviour of the in-laws was the worst. My parents cooperated with me. So I didn’t have many problems. Yes,I had financial difficulties,and worked for the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee. I did feel orphaned,worried and insecure.

Do you wish the bloody years had not happened?

I cannot regret those years. What has happened cannot be wished away. Today,I have two sons,six and five years. It is difficult to raise them alone. I would prefer not to discuss their whereabouts.

Does being the sons of Chheena affect them?

I have not told them anything. When they ask me,I tell them their father is in the village. How do I explain things to them? My children don’t know that their father was a militant though they know his real name. I don’t want them to know about him now. I just want them to become responsible citizens and that the society gives them the same respect and dignity as others get.

Any Akali faction with you?

No one is with us now,not even (Simranjeet Singh) Mann. He probably feels that if he speaks up for us,he will never win an election. It is a matter of politics. We do feel abandoned by the community.

How was the scene when your husband was around?

When the movement was on,we were all respected,especially if our intentions were clear. I was a proclaimed offender (PO) even before I got married. While in Khalsa College,Amritsar,I was annoyed at the attack on the Golden Temple. My links with the militant movement grew as did my desire for revenge. I was in the AISSF and then with the BTFK. I was involved in the murder of Comrade Hardev Singh,and was in jail for a year,in Amritsar. After marriage I became PO again and was arrested and later bailed out. In 1995,I was arrested in Gurdaspur,where there was a case against me. The police would have hounded every family I stayed with. So till January 1996 I was in jail and when I was released,I decided not to be a PO because I had children to raise. I decided to attend the court hearings and to work. I can’t say I returned to the mainstream,but can’t even say I have given up the movement…that is in my blood by now. It is another matter that I have decided not to lift a gun,but will fight politically. Now this itself is a fight to collect all these people under one roof. People ask us why we are here,and we tell them. That is also part of the fight.

What problems did you face in raising your sons?

It was very difficult to get birth certificates for my children. All of us women underground used to get admitted under fake names in hospitals. But I arranged it somehow. I cannot count how many children were born underground,but many were. Kulbir Kaur Dhami’s child was born in the jail. We also did not not tell the schools that the child’s father was a terrorist?

Any emotional disturbances among the children?

Plenty. Call any child and discuss it,and we will have a tough time consoling them. These kids have seen their fathers being dragged away by the hair. They often get up in the middle of their sleep,screaming “hai mere pappa ko maar diya”. They are all small kids who have seen raw violence. So we try not to remind them of it. Most of the small children have not been told that their fathers are dead. Now some of the older ones are learning from their elders. We cannot hide it for all times. They miss their fathers,but they are not old enough to realise that. They don’t know of terrorists. The elder ones have some idea,which they don’t want to talk about. Even if we want to talk to them,explain and correct the picture,they say that we are wrong…that they have seen their fathers fighting for dharam. Why then should we create a bad picture of our husbands in their minds?

Do the children know about Khalistan,what it was all about?

No. We will tell them clearly what it was all about when they grow up. If we tell them now,we don’t know how it will affect them. We want them to be involved in constructive work so that they forget their old trauma. We want them to study,play and be happy.

What Can You Do?

The Sikh widows and children left behind need us. The Singhs that died did their part and it’s now up to us to do ours. We must make sure that those left behind are not suffering and living in poverty.

The best thing we can do is to visit these families and help them in the way they need it most. Establishing contact with them directly.

If you don’t know of any way to do this,helping institutions that support these families is also a good option. Two institutions that are doing this are the Dharam Singh Khalsa Trust and GurAsra Trust. Their links are http://www.khalsatrust.com/ and http://www.guraasra.com or http://www.guraasra.org/ . Please support them in their mission.

Our Brothers and sisters need us now. We have let them down for much too long as it is.

BREAKING:New proof shows that High Ranking Sikh Army Officers were killed in 1984 Sikh Genocide

BREAKING:New proof shows that High Ranking Sikh Army Officers were killed in 1984 Sikh Genocide

Chandigarh:December 17,2012

All India Sikhs Students Federation (AISSF) and “Sikhs for Justice” (SFJ) has unearthed the “Murder Fields” at Tughlakabad and Nangloi where dozens of Sikhs belonging to Armed Forces were butchered to death during November 1984. The high Ranking officers &junior Ranks those who fell victims to the mayhem unleashed against serving Sikh defence personnel at Tughlakabad and Nangloi Railways Stations is a National Shame say the organizations.

AISSF,SFJ And All India Defence Brotherhood (Punjab) released the services particulars and other relevant details of the armed forces personnel killed in November 1984 at death traps laid at Tughlakabad and Nangloi. The documents obtained by AISSF reveals a single FIR Number 355 dated November 1,1984 lodged under sections 147,148,201,302,and 295 of the IPC lodged with Government Railway Police (GRP) Delhi. The Railway Protection Force (RPF) responsible for law and order at the Railway property not only failed to protect these Sikh Army Officers,but rather it is believed their weapons were instead used to kill the Sikh victims at Tughlakabad and Nangloi Railway Stations.

Pointing to the criminal silence by the Armed Forces for the past 28 years over the murder of its high ranking officers,AISSF President &Brigadier Kahlon have demanded the Ministry of Defence take immediate action in the prosecution of the culprits an leaders which masterminded the planned slaughter of Sikh army men during November 1984.

Brigadier Kahlon while speaking at a Press Conference stated that the Defence community in particular and the country as a whole would like to know from the Chiefs of Army Navy and Air Force what action was taken in response to these killings and what will now be done as a result of the revelation of these brutal killings of its own members,with use of their own weaponry and men.

Brigadier kahlon and other leaders have also demanded an immediate constitution of judicial commission so that the truth may come out and action be taken against the butchers involved in the killing as serving members of the the national army and armed forces.

AISSF has demanded a debate in the Parliament to determine why the slaughters broad day light of the nations defenders were completely ignored and no action has ever been taken against the perpetrators. The ruthless murder of high ranking Sikh Army Officers at Tughlakabad and Nangloi in the presence of Railway Police during November 1984 also proves the connivance of police and entire administration of the country in genocidal attacks on Sikhs stated Peer Mohammad.

Amongst those killed in the Massacres killed:

  • Lt. Col. A.S. Anand (74 ArmouredRegiment),
  • Major Sukhwinder Singh (150 Field Regiment),
  • Captain IPS Bindra (63 Cavalry),
  • Captain UPSJassal (9 Assam Battalion),
  • Captain Partap Singh (Ordinance Corps),
  • Lieutenant SS Gill (89 ArmouredRegiment)
  • Flight Lieutenant Harinder Singh,

The press conference held by SFJ and AISSF was attended

  • Lef.. J. Kartar Singh Gill,
  • Brigadier HarwantSingh National President AIDB ,
  • Brigadier Navab Singh,Major S.S. Dhillon,
  • Major Karnail Singh ,
  • Suba Singh Hony F/O Harcharan Singh Gill ,
  • Hony F/O Mamohan Singh All Retd.

Extreme Human Rights Abuses by Indian Army

January 10, 2013

By S.O.S Kashmir

The rape in Delhi has shocked India. Has it really? Or was it the sight of thousands of young students, male and female, demonstrating on the streets and being assaulted by the police for daring to demonstrate that made some Indian citizens think seriously about the problem? As for the Congress government that has, like most of the opposition parties, tolerated this for decades, it was the bad publicity abroad that finally did the trick, but only as far as this case is concerned.

Rape takes place in police stations, in military barracks, in the streets and occasionally in some provincial parliaments. The feminist Communist parliamentarian Brinda Karat, who has long campaigned on the issue, pointed to the assault of a member of the Trinamool assembly by a male oppositionist on 11 December last year. ‘Women were not safe even inside the assembly,’ she said.

Legal activists in Kashmir and Manipur, occupied by the Indian Army, have produced report after report highlighting cases of women raped by soldiers. Response from the top brass: nil. In a country where the culture of rape is so embedded, only a determined effort on every level can change things. This will not happen if this case and others are forgotten.

In 2004, a group of middle-aged mothers were so enraged by the military raping their daughters and sisters that they organised a protest unique in the annals of the women’s movement. They gathered outside the Indian Army barracks, stripped, and held up a banner that read ‘Indian Army Rape Us.’ That image, too, shocked India, but nothing changed. Only a few weeks later another rape scandal erupted in Manipur. If the Indian state is incapable of defending its women, perhaps the world’s largest democracy should seriously consider a change of name. Rapeistan comes to mind.

Manipur District Map

I. Summary

It takes us a long time to raise our children. Then, when they grow up, they are shot. This cannot go on. We no longer want to look for our children in the morgue.

-Yumlembam Mema, women’s rights activist in Manipur

A woman is arrested at her home at night. The authorities provide her family a signed document acknowledging her arrest. The next morning, villagers find her bullet-ridden corpse some four kilometers away from her home. There are widespread protests following the woman’s death. Promises are made by the highest authorities of the country, and yet, after four years, justice remains undone. No one is punished for this crime.

This is the story of Thangjam Manorama Devi, a 32-year-old resident of India’s Manipur state. The paramilitary Assam Rifles suspected her of links to an underground separatist group and detained her on July 11, 2004. The soldiers raided her home in Bamon Kampu village a little after midnight, asking the family to wait outside while they questioned her. They then signed an “arrest memo,” an official acknowledgement of detention put in place to prevent “disappearances” and took her away. Her body was found outside a nearby village. She had been shot through the lower half of her body, raising suspicion that bullets had been used to hide evidence of rape.

Human rights violations by security forces engaged in counter-insurgency operations in Manipur state have occurred with depressing regularity over the last five decades. Separatist militants have also committed widespread human rights abuses. According to the police, nearly 3,000 civilians have died in the conflict since 1990. At least 1,300 militants and nearly 1,000 members of the security forces have also been killed. According to unofficial sources, at least 20,000 people may have died due to violence since the conflict began in the 1950s. But Manipur, a small state of two million people, is tucked away in the country’s remote northeastern region. Not much that happens there makes the national news-unless it is a particularly brutal attack by militants.

However, the security forces’ clear role in Manaroma’s killing captured widespread media attention. Protests erupted in Manipur, while domestic and international human rights groups demanded an immediate investigation and the prosecution of those responsible. Concerned that the government would fail to hold soldiers accountable for the killing, as had repeatedly been the case in the past, for several weeks Manipuris took to the streets. Students, lawyers, traders, mothers, journalists, and human rights activists marched every day, demanding justice. One man committed self-immolation in protest, several others attempted suicide.

The paramilitary Assam Rifles claimed that Manorama was shot dead while trying to escape. In later affidavits, the soldiers implicated said that she was helping the army locate another militant when she instead tried to escape. It is a difficult account to accept: an unarmed, handcuffed woman, wearing the tightly-bound Manipuri sarong that does not lend itself to big strides, supposedly managed to escape the custody of an armed escort. And if she did, it does not explain why the soldiers were unable to catch her and had to shoot to kill. There has also been no explanation why Manorama had not been handed over to police custody by the arresting officials of the Assam Rifles, as the law requires. Or why no female official had been brought in at the time of this night arrest, as is the rule.

Soldiers were able to arrest Manorama because they are empowered to do so under India’s Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA), the 1958 emergency law under which the armed forces are deployed in internal conflicts and enjoy broad powers to arrest, search, and shoot to kill. This 50-year-old law also provides security forces immunity from prosecution and has thus protected members of the Assam Rifles-as well as soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir, and other states in India’s northeast-responsible for killings such as Manorama’s from being brought before a civilian judge to be prosecuted for murder and other offenses.

Manipuris have long campaigned for the repeal of the AFSPA. Demanding that the act be scrapped, human rights activist Irom Chanu Sharmila has been on hunger strike for nearly eight years. Her protest began after Assam Rifles gunned down ten civilians on November 2, 2000. She remains in judicially ordered custody, force-fed through a nasal tube.


Sharmila has been on hunger strike to demand a repeal of the AFSPA since November 2000. © 2007 AFP/Getty Images

After Manorama’s killing, 32 organizations formed a network called Apunba Lup in a campaign to repeal the AFSPA. The most heart-wrenching protest was by a group of Manipuri women, members of the Meira Paibi (“torch bearers”), who on July 15, 2004 stripped naked in front of the Assam Rifles camp in the state capital, Imphal, wrapped in a banner that said, “Indian Army Rape Us.”

Forced to respond, the state government of Manipur ordered a judicial enquiry by retired district judge C. Upendra Singh. Judge Upendra Singh submitted his report in November 2004. Almost four years later, the report is yet to be made public. As court proceedings continue, no action has been taken.


Women protest the killing and alleged rape of Thangjam Manorama Devi with a banner reading “Indian Army Rape Us” at the army headquarters in Imphal in July 2004. © 2004 AFP/Getty Images

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh meanwhile promised justice in the Manorama case and a review of the AFSPA. In November 2004, he set up a committee headed by B.P. Jeevan Reddy, a retired judge of the Supreme Court. The report was submitted in June 2005. While the Jeevan Reddy committee report has also not been made public, the contents were leaked, and it is now known that the committee recommended repeal of the AFSPA. The report however remains with the cabinet in New Delhi for consideration, and no action has been taken.

In the Manorama case, Assam Rifles said that it ordered an internal inquiry. The army and paramilitaries never reveal the findings of internal inquiries, and thus it remains unknown if any member of the Assam Rifles was found responsible for Manorama’s killing and whether they were appropriately punished. Making a concession to public outrage, the defense ministry did release a statement on July 28, 2004 saying only that the court of inquiry had found some “lapses” by Assam Rifles personnel. In an interview with Human Rights Watch, a spokesman for the Assam Rifles said he could not say what action was taken by the court of inquiry “because the concerned officials from that time are no longer in Manipur and the records are not available.”

Meanwhile, Manorama’s family is still waiting for justice to be done. It may be a long wait. Political leaders and government officials may privately agree that Manorama’s killing was unlawful, but the Indian state has failed, yet again, to hold soldiers responsible for a serious human rights violation accountable.


Shrine in memory of Thangjam Manorama Devi outside her house. © 2008 Human Rights Watch

Continuing Security Force Abuses

After Manorama’s death, the security forces appeared to curtail their human rights violations. This did not last long. Since 2006, extrajudicial killings, torture, and other abuses have once again become common practice. According to Human Rights Alert, an Imphal-based voluntary group, in 2006 there were 17 cases in which security forces allegedly extrajudicially executed civilians; in 2007, 12 cases were documented by the group; and as of July 2008, at least 23 such cases had been listed.

For this report, Human Rights Watch investigated several cases of alleged extrajudicial killings committed by the security forces since 2006. In one case, Mohammad Ayub Khan and six others, traveling in a van, were stopped during a routine check by the 19th Assam Rifles on August 26, 2007 at Gwaltabi in Ukhrul district. The soldiers found that Ayub Khan, a mason, was carrying a large sum of money. He explained that this was cash to pay his workers. The soldiers insisted that the van, with all its passengers, be driven to the Assam Rifles camp at Litan. At the camp, Ayub Khan was separated from his co-passengers, who were released. When Ayub Khan’s family heard of the detention, they went to the camp but were not allowed to enter. His brother filed a missing person complaint at the Litan police station, saying that Ayub Khan was last seen in the custody of the 19th Assam Rifles.

On August 30, 2007, the Litan police contacted the family. They said that the Assam Rifles had informed the police that a person had been killed in an armed encounter. They suggested that the family check to see if the unidentified person was their missing relative. The family identified the person as Ayub Khan. The Assam Rifles issued a statement claiming that a suspected militant had been shot in an armed exchange and weapons had been recovered from him. Ayub Khan’s father, Mohammad Karimuddin, told Human Rights Watch that the Assam Rifles are lying:

How can there be an armed encounter with someone who is already in custody? There are witnesses who saw my son being detained. If they [Assam Rifles] thought my son was a militant, they could have arrested him. But they only wanted his money and did not want the truth to come out. So they killed him. They know that no one questions the army in Manipur.

Police Abuses

The behavior of the army appears to have encouraged the Manipur state police to act similarly. The culture of violence has become so deep-rooted that the police have in recent years committed the same abuses as the army and paramilitary forces. In several of the recent cases documented by Human Rights Watch, the alleged perpetrators belonged to the Manipur police. The Manipur state police chief, Yumnam Joykumar Singh, told Human Rights Watch: “My people have been told not to commit human rights abuses and none has occurred.” However, in the same conversation claiming that many of the militants were not political fighters but petty extortionists, he also said, “I have told my people. These fellows must be eliminated. Nothing else can cure us of this disease.”

The message to eliminate militants seems to have resonated with the police. Human Rights Watch was repeatedly told that police commandos were among the worst human rights violators in Manipur. Leitanthem Premananda was picked up on January 30, 2006 and, according to relatives, executed later that same day. Together with their neighbors and friends, the relatives formed an action committee to protest the killing; the police threatened retribution. On February 10, 2006, two leaders of the protest committee, Pechimayum Yaima Singh and Leikapokpam Bisashini, were arrested by the Manipur police. Pechimayum Yaima Singh remained in custody for two months. “My family was very worried,” he said. “Finally, we were released. But we had to promise that we stop the protests, and were threatened that we would be arrested again if we followed up on this case.”

Abujam Shidam, a well-known member of the opposition Manipur People’s Party, was arrested on January 7, 2008. While in custody, he says he was tortured by police commandos claiming to be members of a joint interrogation cell.

I was blindfolded. They started beating and kicking me, saying that I must admit I was a member of the PLA [militant group called People’s Liberation Army]. They filled buckets of water and poured it on my face. They pressed on my joints with their boots. I kept shouting that I was not a militant, but they would not stop.

While the legal impunity under the AFSPA does not formally extend to the state police, police commandos now routinely get away with serious crimes including torture, and fake “encounter killings.” As one activist described it to Human Rights Watch, “The long-term pernicious influence of the AFSPA on Manipur society is its trickle-down effect. One can argue that the rampant corruption in civil administration is a fallout of the climate of impunity generated for many decades by AFSPA in Manipur.”

Armed Groups

Indian officials and many Manipuris point out that the armed groups, commonly called “UGs” (short for “underground”), also commit serious human rights abuses. Some of these groups have a tremendous hold over Manipuri society, with ordinary citizens forced to build alliances with one group to ensure protection from the rest. Many impose a variety of diktats, including a ban on some television channels, on women wearing western clothes, the use of drugs, tobacco, or alcohol and implement such orders with force. Some groups have been responsible for attacks on ethnic minorities. For example, in March 2008, militants killed 14 migrant laborers from other Indian states and left behind a note warning others to leave Manipur. In January 2006, armed cadres belonging to United National Liberation Front (UNLF) and Kangleipak Community Party (KCP) allegedly raped 21 Hmar tribal girls in Manipur’s Churachandpur district. Militants have also been responsible for the indiscriminate use of landmines, bombs, political killings, and attacks upon those they consider to be informers or traitors.

Manipuris complain most about militant groups’ culture of extortion. The state is unable to provide protection from these extortion demands-in fact, many government officials pay themselves. Recently, there has been a spate of abductions by militant groups to recruit children into armed groups involved in fighting. At least 24 school children were reported missing in June and July 2008, leading to widespread protests. One faction of the militant group People’s Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (PREPAK) admitted that that they had recruited some of the missing children.


Protest against attack by militants in Imphal, the capital of Manipur. © 2008 Human Rights Watch

Impunity

Manipuri activists do not dispute the need for strong law enforcement to end the violence perpetrated by militants. Some want the army to remain deployed to combat the UGs, while others want the army withdrawn. But all want the AFSPA to be repealed because of the open license it provides for abuses.

More fundamentally, Manipuris want the culture of impunity to end. Not only has the failure to punish Manorama’s killers shattered any existing faith in the justice system, many Manipuris feel it has also emboldened security officials to take the law into their own hands and to believe they can get away with murder. As one government official admitted to Human Rights Watch, “Known criminals are sometimes killed, but it never happens to innocents.” In this way the security forces have become judge, jury, and executioner-and have become comfortable in adopting this role.

The more or less free rein given to government forces for decades in Manipur and other parts of the northeast has had a significant impact on the country generally. Similar polcies have since been adopted to stamp out armed separatist movements in various other parts of India. Some argue that this is the only way to ensure that separatists who they “know” are guilty do not evade justice. But in the world’s largest democracy, many in the security forces appear to believe it is easier to kill suspects than to gather evidence to secure convictions, while others kill for money or promotions, as they are often rewarded for their actions.

The Indian government, while claiming a firm commitment to the protection of human rights, has consistently ignored violations by its security forces, at best attributing such acts to a few “bad apples.” As this report demonstrates, however, the problems are systemic and require systemic changes in law, policy, and practice. And even assuming the problem is “bad apples,” they are rarely investigated, let alone tried and convicted. This culture of impunity, fostered both by a lack of political will and by laws shielding the perpetrators, has led to an atmosphere where security forces believe they can get away with the most serious crimes without the threat of punishment.

Not only has the Indian government disregarded the demands of Manipuris and the findings of its own government-appointed committees, it has ignored concerns and recommendations by United Nations human rights bodies. For example, in 1997 the UN Human Rights Committee said that the continued use of the AFSPA in Manipur was tantamount to using emergency powers and recommended that the application of these powers be monitored to ensure compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

The UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions, Philip Alston, reported to the UN Human Rights Council in 2007 that despite the government of Manipur ordering “numerous inquiries into the alleged extrajudicial executions, none of them ultimately reached any meaningful conclusions.” In 2007 the Committee on the International Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination called for India to repeal the AFSPA and to replace it “by a more humane Act” in accordance with the recommendation contained in the leaked Jeevan Reddy committee report. The Committee on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women in February 2007 urged India to provide information on the steps being taken to abolish or reform the AFSPA and to ensure serious investigations and prosecutions of acts of violence against women by the military in so-called disturbed areas.

Key Recommendations

  • The government of India, the state government of Manipur, and all militant groups should place human rights protection mechanisms at the center of any attempt to resolve the conflict and ensure compliance with international human rights and humanitarian law.
  • The government of India should repeal the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 as recommended by the government-appointed Jeevan Reddy committee.
  • The government of India and the state government of Manipur should investigate and prosecute government officials, including members of the armed forces, police, and paramilitary, responsible for human rights violations.
  • The government of India should arrest and prosecute to the fullest extent of the law all those found responsible for the 2004 murder of Thangjam Manorama Devi.
  • Armed groups should publicly denounce abuses committed by any militant group and ensure that there is appropriate accountability for such abuses.
  • Armed groups should immediately stop the abduction and recruitment of children into their forces.

Methodology

In early 2008, Human Rights Watch travelled to Manipur to investigate the human rights situation. With the assistance of human rights activists and lawyers, we investigated 18 cases of torture and extrajudicial killing since 2006. We interviewed government officials, army officers, police officials, politicians, lawyers, journalists, and human rights defenders. We conducted over 60 interviews in Manipur and supplemented with follow-up research through August 2008.

For Manorama’s case, we met with Manorama’s family, the lawyers who are pursuing her case, and Judge Upendra Singh, who conducted an investigation into the incident.

Most interviews with victims or their families were conducted privately. In some cases we used local NGO partners as translators. We also held group discussions with some activists, such as the members of the Meira Paibi.

Since there is an ongoing dialogue between the government and some of the groups operating in the hill districts of Manipur, counter-insurgency operations have reduced in scale. Most of the operations are in the Manipur valley to contain the Meitei and Muslim groups. Our investigations were thus limited to the valley areas.

In order to protect victims and others who might face reprisals by either side for speaking about them, names and any information that might identify them, such as places where interviews were held or specific dates of those meetings, have in certain cases been withheld.

Role of Jews in world history

January 3, 2013

Interesting revelations!! What is the ultimate truth only God knows!!

Commentary By Jayne Gardener
SOS KASHMIR

I always used to wonder what it was about Jews that made people throughout history despise them. If they were indeed “God’s chosen” I thought, they had to be the unluckiest people in the history of the world.

Why were they persecuted throughout history? Why had the Nazis herded them into cattle cars and taken them to “extermination camps” to dispose once and for all of the “Jewish problem?”

I suddenly recognized that if Hitler had developed a “Final Solution” to the Jewish question, that there had to have been a “Jewish Problem.” Could the Jews have in any way behaved in such a manner that would make the countries in which they resided turn against them, or were they just unfortunate, innocent victims?

I set out to find answers for my questions, mainly turning to the Internet, but also reading various books on the subject. What I found became increasingly disturbing to me. I had not known that throughout history, the Jews had been expelled from 79 countries, some countries more than once. I had not known that many of the claims they made about the Holocaust that I had believed unquestioningly for so long were in fact fraudulent.

Historical Fact.JPG

The books I had read and the movies I had seen about the “Holocaust”and wept over were nothing but thinly veiled attempts to garner unwavering sympathy for the state of Israel and an excuse to extort billions of dollars from Germany and 1.25 billion dollars from the Swiss banks. I discovered that a book I had read many times as a teenager and cried about, Anne Frank’s Diary, had been at least partially written by someone other than Anne Frank.

I learned that the confessions at the Nuremburg Trials and the executions of so many German “war criminals” were extracted under torture and the defendants were being tried, judged and condemned by their very accusers.

I learned about the “false flag” operations, especially the Lavon affair and the tragedy of the USS Liberty, an American ship that was attacked by the Israelis during the 1967 war. 34 young American men were killed and many more wounded. To add insult to injury, the Israelis claimed that it was simply an unfortunate case of mistaken identity, something the survivors of the Liberty have always vehemently denied. They, however, were threatened with court martial if they were ever to tell their stories.

I learned about the Jonathan Pollard spy case and other incidents of Israeli Jews spying against their supposed “closest ally.”

Gaza.JPG

I became shocked and horrified as I learned about the treatment of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories at the hands of the Israeli Defense Forces and the Jewish settlers. Israel purports to be the only democracy in the middle east, but it’s only a democracy for Jews. Non-Jews are not considered equal. I was saddened to see pictures of innocent Palestinian children burned beyond recognition or suffering from serious gunshot wounds after being targeted by the IDF for no other reason than that they are Palestinian.

I found out about the Jewish history of avariciousness, larceny, lying, manipulation and their questionable and usurious business practices.

I learned about their roles in the radical homosexual movement, the radical feminist movement, the pornography industry as well as their over-representation in the abortion industry.

I discovered their role in organized crime, in the slave trade, in the civil rights movement and in Communism, an ideology that is responsible for the deaths of untold millions and the repression of many millions more.

I learned that it was Jewish supremacists behind the war against Christianity and Christmas. It is they who want God out of the Pledge of Allegiance and all symbols of Christianity removed from public life. They have driven Christianity from the public schools despite Christianity being the majority religion.

They have taken Christmas out of the public school calendar despite the fact that it is a statutory holiday and it is named Christmas.

I read about the anti-Genteelism and hatefulness of the Babylonian Talmud and their utter disrespect for, and hostility towards Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary and Christianity and Christians in general.

I learned about their “chutzpah” in claiming that Gentile lives were worth no more than the lives of barnyard animals but that they considered Jewish lives to be akin to God Himself. It’s okay to steal from a Gentile or to kill a Gentile, but Jewish lives are sacred.

I learned of their control of the majority of wealth, the media and academia despite them making up less than 2% of the population (even lower in Canada ). They are behind the ridiculous political correctness movement and hate crime legislation that was drafted so as to silence anyone who might figure out their agenda and attempt to shed light on it.

Men like German Rudolf, David Irving and many more, previously recognized as great historians, were arrested, charged with hate crimes and incarcerated simply for having made academic inquiry into a specific period of history. Other so called “revisionists” or “holocaust deniers” have been intimidated, harassed, assaulted and smeared simply for trying to get at the truth.

It is patently clear that the war in Iraq is due solely to Israel wanting to hobble her enemies by destabilizing their governments in order to achieve hegemony in the middle east. It would be unthinkable for Israeli Jews to die for this cause, so they manipulated the US into the war with the help of the Jewish Zionist ” Israel firsters” in the Bush administration in order that the blood of way too many young American men and women is shed instead.

It is they who control the middle eastern foreign policy of the most powerful country in the world, the USA . It is they who control congress, the senate and the puppet president, George W. Bush.

They have such control in movies and television that we are now subjected to endless programs and Hollywood movies that mock Christianity, Christian values and degrade the traditional family.

After sober reflection on what I had discovered about Jewish supremacy and Zionism, I had to abandon all my previously held notions as to the history of Jewish persecution. What I have trouble understanding is why they continue this behavior in whichever society they live, knowing that eventually they will overplay their hand and their perfidy will be exposed yet again. Has history taught them nothing?

As more and more people become aware of what is going on and who is responsible for it, anger is going to rise as it already has in the former Soviet Union and eastern European countries. They may control television, movies and the print media, but they don’t control the internet.

At least not yet. Blogs and websites devoted to “outing” the Jewish supremacists will ultimately be their downfall. If everyone who sees this information passes it on to at least one other person, the crimes and misdeeds of the Jewish supremacists and Zionists will be exposed. Please, do your part. Pass it on. Our world as we know it is counting on you.

Islamophobic and Anti_Hindu crime in New York takes life

December 31, 2012

by Annie Robbins and Alex Kane
ZoneAsia-Pk

A horrific crime if we’ve ever seen one–and a reminder that Islamophobia affects many communities outside Muslim ones.

From the AP:

A woman who told police she shoved a man to his death off a subway platform into the path of a train because she hates Muslims and thought he was one was charged Saturday with murder as a hate crime, prosecutors said.

…..

“I pushed a Muslim off the train tracks because I hate Hindus and Muslims ever since 2001 when they put down the twin towers I’ve been beating them up,” Menendez told police, according to the district attorney’s office.

……

Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Friday urged residents to keep Sen’s death in perspective as he touted new historic lows in the city’s annual homicide and shooting totals.

“It’s a very tragic case, but what we want to focus on today is the overall safety in New York,” Bloomberg told reporters following a police academy graduation.

What kind of perspective is Bloomberg referencing? If someone said “I shoved a Jew in front of a train because I hate Jews,” would Bloomberg be touting drops in the city’s annual homicide and shooting totals? Quite an insensitive comment, at the very least.

After this news broke, Twitter was aflutter with people pointing to Pamela Geller as one culprit pushing anti-Muslim sentiment in the city. Geller’s organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, recently put up a new crop of ads that features the World Trade Center burning with a Qu’ran verse printed to the right of the towers.

Geller’s role in promoting anti-Muslim sentiment of the sort that leads to Islamophobic hate crimes should not be in dispute. But what should also be highlighted is how New York City’s own police force has promoted anti-Muslim bigotry time and time again, from surveillance of Muslims that places the whole community under suspicion to training officers with an Islamophobic flick.

Friend of Mondoweiss Lizzy Ratner made this point in her excellent piece on Geller in The Nation:

Though Geller and her crew are fringe elements, they are not random or spontaneous, idiopathic lesions on the healthier whole. They are, quite sadly, part of this country, outcroppings of something big and ugly that has been seeping and creeping through the body politic for years. In the decade since September 11, anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry has become an entrenched feature of our political and social landscape. It lurks in the hidden corners of everyday life-in classrooms and offices and housing complexes-as well as in the ugly scenes that occasionally explode into public consciousness. In the special registration of Middle Eastern men after 9/11. In the vicious campaign against Debbie Almontaser, the American Muslim school teacher who tried to open the Arabic-language Khalil Gibran International Academy (KGIA) and was tarred as an extremist. In the attack on the Park51 Islamic center, more commonly (if less accurately) known as the Ground Zero mosque. In the New York Police Department’s selective surveillance of Muslim communities. And that’s just New York City. All of these instances should have called on our horror and outrage, and in all too many of them, society hasn’t lived up.

This crime appears to be the latest manifestation of New York City’s Islamophobia. This time, it cost a life.