THE HIDDEN HAND
The reasons behind upsurge in communal polarization of Indian society
22.11.19 - Markandey Katju
The reasons behind upsurge in communal polarization of Indian society



ALTHOUGH THE Constitution of India declares India to be a secular country, the ground reality is very different. In recent years, particularly after the Hindu right wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power in 2014, Indian society has been considerably polarised on religious lines. Consider the following facts:

1. Lynching and atrocities on Muslims continues unabated. Most Hindus are either indifferent to this, or even sometimes inwardly happy. One terrorist less. The perpetrators are rarely, if at all, punished.

2. In many schools in India Muslim children are being conveyed overtly and also by suggestions, by Hindu teachers and fellow Hindu students, that Muslims are fanatics, terrorists and foreigners

3. By delivering the disgraceful Ayodhya verdict the Supreme Court has conveyed the message ‘Jiski laathi usi ki bhains‘ (might is right) and that naked aggression will be overlooked and even sanctified.

4. West Bengal, which was till recent years a model secular state, has largely been polarised on religious lines. Many Hindus have joined the BJP there. Tamilnadu, Kerala, Andhra, Odisha etc may also soon follow suit.

5. Most Hindus have become communal. This I know from personal experience. My own Hindu relatives and friends, when they are sure there is no Muslim present, often spout venom on Muslims. 

6. Most institutions in India have been ‘saffronised’. History has been perverted, secular rulers like Akbar and Tipu Sultan depicted as communal just because they were Muslims. Science has been sought to be perverted, e.g. in a National Science Congress speakers claimed Ravana had 24 types of airplanes and airports in Srilanka (Modi himself spoke nonsense that head transplant surgery and genetic engineering was known in ancient India). The Indian media has largely prostrated itself before the present rulers. Several senior journalists who refused to toe the govt line were sacked.

7. BJP leaders shamelessly defended lynchers of Muslims, e.g. former Union Minister Jayant Sinha who garlanded the lynching accused. 

8. Hate speeches against minorities go on with impunity, and Muslims live in fear in many places.

9. After the Babri Masjid demolition, other Muslim religious sites, e.g. in Kashi and Mathura, are in danger. Even Jama Masjid, Delhi has been claimed by Sakshi Maharaj, MP, to be a Hindu temple, which must be restored. 

10. Muslims are attacked for marrying or having an affair with a Hindu girl (called love jihad), for sporting a beard, wearing a skull cap, and for refusing to say ‘Jai Shri Ram’, and berated as anti nationals, traitors, terrorists and Pakistanis

11. Names of some cities and roads have been changed e.g. Allahabad and Mughal Sarai, and others may follow.

12. In the 542 member Indian Lok Sabha (the lower House of Parliament) there are only 27 Muslim members i.e. 5% of the total seats, although Muslims comprise over 15% of India’s population. Of the 303 BJP MPs only 1 is Muslim.

13. Even the NRIs in America  (where I am presently staying) have become polarised, and many new RSS ‘shakhas’ opened here

It is clear that in recent years polarization of Indian society on religious basis has witnessed an exponential upsurge. Earlier too there was communal feeling, but it was largely latent, erupting only on occasions. Now under BJP rule from 2014 it has become open, virulent. and continuous. What is the cause? 

Some people say that it is because of reaction among Hindus who were earlier suppressed due to appeasement policy of Congress towards Muslims who were treated as a vote bank. Others say that Muslims are inherently fanatics and bigots, who often resort to terrorism, etc. But what is the truth?

The truth is that 99% of all people, whether Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Jain, Parsi or Buddhist are good people. Most Muslims, like most Hindus, are peaceful, upright and law abiding. So it is absurd to say that all, or even most, Muslims are bigots and terrorists. 

In fact there was no communal feeling before 1857, as I have explained in my article ‘The Truth about Pakistan’ published in the Pakistani newspaper The Nation some years back. Before 1857 Hindus and Muslims lived harmoniously, Hindus used to participate in Eid and Muharram, and Muslims in Holi and Diwali. 

Communalism was artificially created after suppressing the 1857 Mutiny (in which Hindus and Muslims fought together against the British) by the British rulers as part of their divide and rule policy (see BN Pande’s ‘History in the service of Imperialism’ online), and this was continued even after Independence, but now it has increased exponentially.

There are two reasons for the recent upsurge in communal polarization in India, one internal, and the other external. Let me explain

Internal causes of polarisation

The Congress Party, by its Muslim appeasement policy (to get Muslim votes) created a strong reaction among many Hindus, who though forming 80% of the Indian population, felt they were being ignored, and all the Congress cared for was the 15% Muslims.
 
This naturally created a backlash, which helped the BJP to come to power in 2014. Of course the scandalous corruption by most Congress leaders and Modi’s ‘vikas’ slogan also helped.

However, now the Indian economy is tanking, with huge dip in GDP, manufacturing sector, IT, real estate etc on the rapid decline, and record unemployment as admitted by National Sample Survey, a Govt of India organization (12 million Indian youth are entering the job market every year but jobs are shrinking), child malnourishment (every second Indian child is malnourished, according to Global Hunger Index and UNICEF), 50% Indian women anaemic, farmers suicides (already well over 300,000) continuing unabated, almost total lack of proper healthcare and good education for the masses, etc.

The present Govt of India has no inkling how to resolve these massive problems, so to divert public attention from them it has to have a scapegoat.
 
This scapegoat is the Muslims, who, like the Jews in the Nazi era, are blamed for all social evils. Muslims are vilified as fanatics, anti-national and terrorists. The Indian media, which has largely been ‘Modified’, dutifully obliges by spreading communal hatred. 

Propaganda is such a powerful thing that even good people’s minds can be poisoned. For instance, Germans are ordinarily very good people, but during the Nazi era almost the whole German nation went mad, their minds poisoned by Hitler and Goebbels. Similarly, by the communal propaganda and other wicked techniques of the BJP most Hindus have been made Muslim haters in recent years.

Some people deny that BJP is anti minority, and they refer to Modi’s statement ‘Sabka saath, sabka vishwas‘ but everyone knows this is hypocrisy and empty rhetoric. BJP’s entire politics is based on hatred of minorities, particularly Muslims. BJP is dominated by an organization called the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh), which is rabidly anti minority (see the book ‘Bunch of Thoughts’ by the former RSS leader M. S. Golwalkar). Only by spreading and increasing religious hatred can the BJP thrive.

External causes of polarisation

This world really consists of two worlds, the world of the developed, highly industrialized countries (North America, Europe, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and China), and the world of the underdeveloped countries (which includes India).

The national objective of India must be to transform and uplift itself into the ranks of the developed countries, for then only can it abolish poverty, unemployment and its other massive problems.

However, this transformation will be opposed tooth and nail by the developed countries, which have an unwritten rule that underdeveloped countries must not be allowed to join the ranks of the developed countries. Why this is so needs to be explained.

Cost of labour is a big chunk of the total cost of production. So if the cost of labour is less the cost of production is less, and one can sell his product at a cheaper price and eliminate his business rival by underselling him i.e. by selling the same quality goods at a cheaper price. There is competition in the market, and one businessman eliminates another not with guns, bombs or tanks but by underselling him.

For instance, after the 1949 Revolution, the Chinese leaders built up a massive industrial base in China. That massive industrial base, coupled with the cheap labour available in China, enabled the Chinese to undersell the whole world in consumer goods. Today the supermarkets of Western countries are packed with Chinese goods, which sell at less than half the price of goods made by Western manufacturers (because the Western labour is expensive). Consequently many Western industries, which could not face the Chinese competition, had to close down.

Now coming to India, the situation in 1947, when India became independent, was that there were then very few industries and very few engineers. This was because of the policy of the British rulers who did not want India to become an industrialised nation, and wanted to keep it backward and feudal. However, after Independence there was a limited degree of industrialisation in India, a heavy industrial base (steel plants etc) were set up, engineering colleges like IITs were established, etc. The result is that today India is very different from the India of 1947. Today it has all that is required to become a highly industrialized nation—a huge pool of technical talent (its IT engineers are largely manning Silicon Valley, and American Universities are full of Indian Professors in Engineering, Science and Mathematics) and immense natural resources.

But if India in fact becomes a highly industrialized country then with its cheap labour it will undersell the Western industrial products. Our labour is even cheaper than Chinese labour, so we will even undersell the Chinese if we get highly industrialized. So if India gets highly industrialized who will buy the expensive products of the industries of the presently developed countries ? Will they not have to close down causing massive unemployment? 

India is presently the most developed of the underdeveloped countries, and with correct modern minded leadership it can become a highly developed country in 15-20 years (with modern minded leaders after the Meiji Restoration of 1868 Japan took only this much time to transform itself from a feudal to a highly developed country). But if it does, will it not greatly damage the industries of the developed countries with their expensive labour?

So developed countries will strongly oppose India’s joining the ranks of the developed countries. And how do they do that? By supporting and inciting religious and caste conflicts. In other words, by making Indians fight with each other. I strongly suspect their hidden hand behind the increased religious polarisation of Indian society.
 
 
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India.

 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

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Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

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Comment by: Shiva Raje

Really Great, Well written sir

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Is India headed to its own ‘French Revolution’?
15.11.19 - Markandey Katju
Is India headed to its own ‘French Revolution’?



All indications are that some kind of French Revolution is coming in the Indian subcontinent. Consider the facts :

1. Everything has collapsed in India, all state institutions have become hollow and empty shells, and largely corrupt, while the Indian economy is tanking and the people's distress is growing, with record and rising unemployment (12 million youth entering the job market in India every year but jobs becoming less, as the National Sample Survey, a Govt of India organisation, admits),  appalling level of child malnourishment (every second child in India is malnourished, as Global Hunger Index and UNICEF reports indicate), 50% of Indian women anaemic, almost total lack of proper healthcare and good education for the masses, farmers suicides continuing unabated (well over 300,000 already), etc and our political leaders totally unconcerned, seeking only power and pelf (see my articles 'Why celebrate Republic Day when the Constitution has become a scarecrow' and 'A storm is brewing in India, but chess players can't see it' published online)

2. Just as before the French Revolution public debt had reached colossal heights, so also is the situation in both India and Pakistan. Pakistan had to go begging to the IMF for a 6 billion dollar loan (which increases its debt to 106 billion dollars, much of its revenue going just to service it). The Indian Government forced the Reserve Bank of India to give it 1.76 lac crore rupees to cover its fiscal deficit.
 
This reminds one of the situation in France before the Revolution, when the French monarchy kept taking loans from Dutch bankers to cover its huge deficit, until the time came when the bankers refused to give any more loans, realising the same would never be recovered.

3. Swarms of millions of locusts descended on Karachi recently, and the Sindh Agriculture Minister Ismail Roohi (in pic) made a heartless comment that people should eat biriyani made of locusts.
 
This reminds one of the remark of Foulon, the French Controller of Finance under Louis 16th, who said that if people did not have food to eat they should eat grass. After the storming of the Bastille on 14th July, 1789 Foulon tried to hide, but was caught, his head cut off, grass stuffed into it, put on a pike, and paraded through the streets of Paris with a poster "Here is the man who wanted us to eat grass". So Ismail Roohi should watch out

4.  In Kanpur a truck carrying fishes overturned, and people nearby rushed to grab some. Similarly, in Odisha, a truck carrying hundreds of chicken crashed, and people rushed to grab some.
 
This reminds one of a scene in Dickens' novel 'A tale of two cities' where a barrel of wine being carried on a vehicle in a Paris street broke up, and nearby people rushed to swallow some of the wine spilled on the street. One person dipped his fingers in the red wine and wrote on a wall 'Blood', symbolising the bloodshed and guillotine which was coming.
 
5. The imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra reminded me of the tennis court oath on 20th June, 1789 in Versailles during the French Revolution (see my article 'Imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra is unconstitutional')

6. Skyrocketing food and fuel prices are common to both the situation in France in 1789, and in India and Pakistan today

7. The King and aristocrats in France were totally oblivious of the approaching storm. On 14th July 1789, when the Bastille was being stormed, Louis 16th wrote in his diary 'rien' (nothing) i.e. nothing was happening. Similarly Indian politicians are blissfully unaware of the rising tide which will one day engulf them (see my article 'Wake up Bourbons' on my blog Satyam Bruyat). They have no genuine love for the country, and are only interested in power and pelf by hook or crook. For their vote banks they polarise people, and spread caste and communal hatred. 

In Pakistan, the PPP and PMLN are perceived as corrupt, and Imran Khan, who professed accountability and transparency, abandoned all his principles by giving PTI tickets to dubious 'electables', taking help of religious extremists in the elections, and sacking Atif Mian, the renowned economist from the Economic Advisory Council only because he was an Ahmadi. As for Maulana Fazlur Rahman, who led the 'azadi' march recently,  he is a well known reactionary thug and opportunist.

The Indian Prime Minister Modi, who is an expert in gimmicks like Yoga Day, Cow protection, Ram Mandir, Swatchata Abhiyan, abolition of Article 370, etc (which he resorts to in order to divert attention from the terrible economic crisis India is going through, which his rabidly anti minority government has no inkling how to solve) said in the Howdy Modi function in Houston recently that everything is fine in India (he said it in several languages), when the truth is the reverse, nothing is fine in India, the economy is tanking, Kashmir situation getting worse, etc. It was like the Nazi Propaganda Minister Dr Goebbels saying that Germany was winning the war, when everyone knew it was losing.

8. Rousseau, the philosopher of the French Revolution, and mentor to its leader Robespierre, wrote in his 'Discourse on Inequality' " It is surely contrary to the laws of nature that a handful of people gorge themselves with superfluities, while the starving multitudes lack the necessities of life ".

In India 7 individuals own as much, if not more, wealth than the bottom half of its 1.35 billion people (one of the 7 owning an estimated 3.5 lac crore rupees=$50 billion, and who reportedly spent thousands of crore rupees recently on his daughter's wedding)

Surely this monstrous and glaring inequality is unacceptable, and cannot continue for long, when tens of millions of Indian children do not get enough to eat. 

9. The parliamentary system India has adopted runs largely on caste and communal vote banks. Casteism and communalism are backward feudal forces which must be destroyed if India is to progress, but parliamentary democracy further entrenches them. So it has to be replaced by another system which enables India to rapidly industrialise and modernise, but such replacement requires a revolution.

10. India's national objective must be to transform and uplift the country from the ranks of the underdeveloped countries into the ranks of the developed, highly industrialised countries, for only then can it abolish massive poverty, unemployment, malnourishment etc. But there are powerful forces and vested interests, both internal and external, which will oppose such transformation tooth and nail, as they do not want India to become another industrial giant like China.  Hence it can only be achieved by a mighty historical popular upsurge, i.e. something like a French Revolution.

Anyone with even a little idea of history can see it dawning in the horizon.
 
 
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India.

 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





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ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES AND TENNIS COURT
Imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra is unconstitutional
12.11.19 - Markandey Katju
Imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra is unconstitutional



IN MY OPINION the recent imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra under Article 356 of the Indian Constitution was unconstitutional, and needs to be declared as such by the Supreme Court.

In the recent elections to the 288 member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly the BJP got 105 seats, the Shiv Sena got 56, NCP got 54, and Congress got 44.
 
Although BJP and Shiv Sena had fought the election in alliance, after the elections the alliance fell apart on the issue of who will be the Chief Minister.

A file photo of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray with BJP President Amit Shah and Devendra Fadnavis.

  
No single party got a majority in the House, and no alliance could be formed claiming a majority. Hence the Governor of the state recommended President's rule, which was imposed.

Now a similar situation had arisen in UP in 1996 where also President's rule was imposed soon after the Legislative Assembly elections for the same reason viz no party, nor combination of parties, had a majority in the House.

The imposition of President's rule was challenged in the Allahabad High Court, and a Full Bench of the High Court, of which I was a member, held the imposition unconstitutional, vide H.S.Jain vs Union of India.

The reasoning which the Full Bench gave in that case squarely applies to the imposition of President's rule in Maharashtra too.

What was held by the Full Bench was this: it has been held in the authoritative judgment of the Supreme Court in Bommai's case, (1994) 3 S.C.C. 1 (in paragraphs 109, 120, 383 and 391) that imposition of President's rule should not be resorted to unless all other recourses have failed.

In paragraph 112 of my decision in the Full Bench I observed
"The Governor should have sent a message to the House under Article 175(2) of the Constitution, after summoning it under Article 174(1) stating that despite his best efforts he was unable to find out who is the person who can command the confidence of the House, and hence the House itself should inform him about such person. The Governor in this message should have asked the House to assemble and decide within a reasonable period of time about this matter, and then inform him. In this message the Governor could have also warned the House that if it did not make up its mind within a reasonable period of time, the House may have to be dissolved".

In paragraph 128 of my decision I observed that in a case of a fractured electoral verdict where no party or combination of parties appeared to have a majority in the House, "the only legal alternative left for the Governor is to ask the Assembly to inform him the person in whom it has confidence. Who can be in a better position than the House itself to inform the Governor in whom it has confidence?"
-----------
If elected representatives are not allowed to meet in the House, should they meet in a tennis court, as happened in France during the French Revolution of 1789?
-----------
In paragraph 131 of my verdict I observed "Although this course of action has not been expressly mentioned in the Constitution, it logically flows out of Article 164(2), and is the only democratic alternative short of dissolution. In today's era of fractured verdicts, it is the only logical method."

I referred to Article 6 of the Japanese Constitution which states "The Emperor shall appoint a Prime Minister as designated by the Diet" ( the Japanese Parliament is called the Diet), and observed "Although we do not have a similar provision in our Constitution, while judicially interpreting it we can borrow from the democratic spirit of the Japanese Constitution".

Thus, when the Governor of Maharashtra, Bhagat Singh Koshyari (in pic), could not find any party or combination of parties which appeared to have a majority in the Assembly, before recommending imposition of President's rule he should have sent a message to the House under Article 175(2) , after summoning it under Article 174(1), asking the House to assemble, deliberate, and then inform him within a reasonable period of time in whom it has confidence, so that he could be appointed Chief Minister. 

In Bommai's case it was held that imposition of President's rule was a very serious step, and is a last option, to be resorted to only when all other recourses have failed.
 
In Maharashtra, as in UP in 1996, there was an option left, as referred to above. Hence without resorting to it, recommending imposition of President's rule straightaway was clearly unconstitutional.

Some people may ask what use such a step would have been when the political leaders were unable to come to a compromise?
 

On the 20th June 1789 at Versailles in France, the National Assembly swore the Tennis Court Oath in which they vowed not to separate until a written constitution had been established for the country.

 
The answer was given in paragraph 134 of my judgment
"In my opinion if the elected members are permitted to come together and meet in the House, then a Socratic debate may take place, and it is possible that a solution may emerge. When 2 or more persons are sitting separately they may not be able to resolve their differences, but when they come together it is possible that by discussions and negotiations some compromise may come about. This is the democratic method also. The elected representatives may put pressure on their leaders to give up their intransigent and uncompromising attitude, and adopt a more flexible approach". 

It must be remembered that elections are a costly affair, and frequent elections are a recourse which a poor country like India can ill afford. Also, frequent elections were one of the causes of the collapse of the Weimar Republic and Hitler coming to power in 1933. Hence every effort should be made to avoid them. 

If elected representatives are not allowed to meet in the House, should they meet in a tennis court, as happened in France during the French Revolution of 1789?
 
 
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India.

 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





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WHY THIS HUE & CRY?
Withdrawal of SPG security cover for Sonia and Rahul
08.11.19 - Markandey Katju
Withdrawal of SPG security cover for Sonia and Rahul



A big hue and cry has been raised by Congressmen over withdrawal of SPG ( Special Protection Group ) security cover for Sonia and Rahul Gandhi (though they will still get Z+ security), alleging it is an act of political vendetta. Indian official sources say this was done only after getting reports from multiple intelligence agencies that there was no security threat to them.

Be that as it may, the question which needs to be considered is whether public figures need such high security at all?

It is my belief that if public figures do not do misdeeds, they will hardly face any danger from anyone, and will not need security. That is my personal experience.

When I was a Judge of Allahabad High Court (1991-2004) I would almost daily go for morning walks for several miles on the public roads without any security guard (I only carried a cane to ward off stray dogs). I never received any threat from anyone, though I sometimes even confirmed death sentences. I would go daily from my residence to the High Court and back on a car without any security.

When I was appointed Acting Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court (in August 2004), on leaving my residence on my car I saw a policeman on a motor cycle in front, and a gypsy vehicle with half a dozen policemen with automatic rifles behind my car. I asked my secretary, who was travelling with me, who these people were? He said they are my security. I said I don't need any security, so tell them to buzz off. My secretary replied that under the police regulations a Chief Justice or Acting Chief Justice must have security, so I had no choice in the matter, as the police, and I too, were bound by the rules.

Shortly after I became Chief Justice of Madras High Court (in pic) in November 2004 I went by train from Chennai (the principal seat of the High Court) to Madurai, where a new bench of the High Court had been set up. A huge contingent of policemen were at the Madurai railway station to receive me. From the station I went by car on the 10 mile route to the Madurai High Court bench premises. I saw policemen posted every 100 or 200 yards throughout this route saluting me.

In the evening I called the Inspector General of Police (southern range) and told him he should not have posted these policemen at the railway station and en route to the High Court premises.
 
I told him police are for the protection of citizens. But by posting half the police force of Madurai to stand saluting me meant that it had given robbers, thieves and cut throats a field day, as the citizens were left unprotected. I said I had no ego problems, and requested him not to do this again.

The first Prime Minister of India, Pt Jawaharlal Nehru, used to jump into a crowd without security, and yet there was never any threat to him.
 
The famous Chief Minister of Tamilnadu, K.Kamraj always refused any security, and so did Dr BC Roy, the famous CM of West Bengal. This was because at that time most politicians were upright. The need for security arose only thereafter when politicians started doing misdeeds like corruption.

It is widely perceived that Sonia Gandhi was totally corrupt and looted hundreds, if not thousands, of crore rupees, and took them to foreign banks or other secret havens abroad.
 
Though technically Manmohan Singh, as PM, was head of the Indian Government, it is well known he was only a dummy, and the real ruler was Sonia.
 
In fact Manmohan Singh told me this himself, first when I attended a reception given to him by the then Cabinet Secretary BK Chaturvedi, and second when I went to him to ask for pardon to Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar, who I thought had been wrongly convicted (the exact words used by Manmohan Singh to me were "Justice Katju, I am not a free man").

Scam followed scam during the UPA rule, not of crores but of lacs of crores of rupees. Though there may not be direct evidence, there is overwhelming circumstantial evidence that Sonia was the main beneficiary of this loot. She (and Rahul) were the be all and end all in the Congress party, and all other Congressmen were non entities. 
 
Sonia had evidently been taught by her mother-in-law that the Nehru-Gandhi family were the royals who by divine right had the right to rule India.
 
Everyone in Congress had to blindly accept their leadership, and they treated other Congressmen with disdain, one proof of which was when the Assamese Congress leader Himanta Biswa Sarma (who later joined BJP in view of his ill treatment) went to meet Rahul, he could get an audience only after a long wait, and then too for only a few minutes during which Rahul was feeding his dog. 

Indira Gandhi, and thereafter her descendants, treated Indians as gullible fools, who would accept the rule of the 'Royal' family, no matter what misdeed they committed. The Italian and American Mafia pale into insignificance compared to them.

So why should Sonia and Rahul get any security, far less SPG security? If they have done no misdeed, they should openly say so, and refuse heavy security, like upright Congress leaders in the early years after Independence such as Pt Nehru, Kamaraj, and Dr BC Roy
 
 
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India.

 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

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_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





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Why are policemen scared of lawyers in India?
05.11.19 - Markandey Katju
Why are policemen scared of lawyers in India?



RECENTLY some policemen in Delhi were said to have been physically assaulted in Tees Hazari, Karkardooma and Saket district Courts in Delhi, which instigated them to hold a demonstration of several hours before the headquarters of the Delhi Police Commissioner near the ITO building demanding protection from such assaults. Several were seen carrying posters reading 'Hum police hain, ghulam nahin' (We are policemen, not slaves). Their agitation has been supported by police organisations all over India.

Now it seems strange that policemen, who do not seem scared of any other section of society (except, perhaps, politicians) are scared of lawyers. Lawyers don't carry lathis and guns, as many policemen do, then why are the latter scared of them?
 
Even when there is a police lathi charge on lawyers, it is usually consequential to a prior assault by lawyers on policemen, with fists or by stone pelting. Policemen are not wearing bangles, so if they are assaulted upon they are likely to retaliate, but usually they are not the ones who began the incident.

The reason why policemen are scared of lawyers is that lawyers have a weapon called 'istagaasha' or criminal complaint, of which policemen are dreadfully afraid. 

A criminal case in India can be started in one of two ways (1) by filing an FIR (first information report) in a police station under section 154 Cr.P.C. or (2) by filing an istagaasha or criminal complaint before the judicial magistrate, under section 200 Cr.P.C.

Now policemen are not scared of an FIR because that is submitted to others of their own fraternity, and members of one's own fraternity tend to gang up with each other. So the matter is 'manageable'. 

But a criminal complaint before a judicial magistrate is an altogether different cup of tea. It is presented before a judge (a judicial magistrate), and lawyers and judges belong to the same legal fraternity. A magistrate's sympathy is therefore likely to be more with the lawyers who appear daily before him in court rather than with policemen.

On receiving a complaint by lawyers of a police atrocity, whether true or concocted, the magistrate will issue summons to the police accused under section 204 Cr.P.C. and begin a criminal trial, which may end up by the accused policemen being sent to jail, and/or their career damaged or ruined.
 
So the moment a summons is issued against him by a magistrate, a policemen is like a fish out of water, flopping about hither and thither. That is the real reason why policemen are scared of lawyers.

Many lawyers have imaginative minds, which also scares government servants. Let me give an example.

When I was a lawyer in Allahabad High Court (1971-91) there was a leading senior lawyer of Allahabad District Court (let us call him AB), who though having a huge practice never filed income tax returns, and never paid any income tax.

Once a young exuberant and upright Income Tax Officer was posted in Allahabad, who issued a notice to AB to appear before him.
 
When AB appeared, the ITO said "Mr AB, everyone knows you are a top lawyer in Allahabad District Court with a roaring practice. Yet you never file income tax returns and never pay any income tax", and having said so, made a best judgment assessment and levied a huge demand on AB as tax and penalty.
 
AB kept pleading that he was a poor lawyer with no practice, will be ruined by this huge demand as he had no assets, etc etc but to no avail.
-----------
-----------
A few days thereafter the ITO received a letter from a lawyer (not AB) stating that his client, a young woman, had been impregnated by the ITO under a false promise of marriage which he had not kept, and now his client has delivered his child, for which he must pay a huge amount of compensation, otherwise legal proceedings for rape etc will be commenced against him.

The ITO was bewildered and shocked, as he had never till then even had an affair with any woman, far less impregnating anyone.
 
He went from lawyer to lawyer seeking advice, and ultimately someone told him to go to AB. He did, and fell at AB's feet, apologising profusely. Consequently, a compromise was reached. The ITO recalled his order imposing tax and penalty on AB, and the legal notice too was withdrawn.

No wonder government servants in India give lawyers a wide berth !
 
 
Justice Markandey Katju is former Judge, Supreme Court of India and former Chairman, Press Council of India.

 

Disclaimer : PunjabToday.in and other platforms of the Punjab Today group strive to include views and opinions from across the entire spectrum, but by no means do we agree with everything we publish. Our efforts and editorial choices consistently underscore our authors' right to the freedom of speech. However, it should be clear to all readers that individual authors are responsible for the information, ideas or opinions in their articles, and very often, these do not reflect the views of PunjabToday.in or other platforms of the group. Punjab Today does not assume any responsibility or liability for the views of authors whose work appears here.

_______________________________________________________________

Most shared Punjab Today articles:

 

KYUN KE HUM HAIN HINDUSTANI

Three Women of 1984

 FROM 1984 TO BARGARI - Hurt & angry, we’ve tried rage, anger. Did we miss karuna?   

REVISITING 1984 – RIOT AROUND A POLE     

KARTARPUR SAHIB: A CLARION CALL FOR PEACE IN AN AGE OF CYNICISM

If it could happen to Arun Shourie, imagine what could they do to you?

Healers & Predators – The Doctor is In, & is very corrupt

Amarinder, Badals, AAP — Every party in Punjab is now an Akali Dal

Welcome to 1947. Happy Independence Day. Would you like to step out?

In Pakistan, a donkey pays for democracy – bleeding, its nostrils ripped apart

WOOING THE PANTH: Amarinder a little less Congressy, Akali Dal a little more saffron

"Captain Amarinder Singh ji” and "Rahul”: Reading Sign Language In A Relationship

The Comrade In Punjab - Lost, Irrelevant, Asleep, Even Bored!

WATERS ROYALTY - The Loot that Rajasthan Committed

AMARINDER GOVT's LOVE FOR FARMERS, AND MY DAD's FOR HIS SCOOTER

OF SUNNY KID & HORSE SENSE: The Punjab-Punjab Ties  

TRUDEAU VISIT AND RIGHT-WING MEDIA MACHINE         

 OF NIRMAL SINGH'S EYES 

Mr. CHIEF MINISTER, PLEASE CALL OFF JANUARY 7 FUNCTION         

MR PRESIDENT, PLEASE TAKE BACK HIS GALLANTRY MEDAL       

A SAFFRON JOURNEY VIA CANADA

BAD, BAD WOMAN!

 


 

_______________________________________________________________

Punjab Today believes in serious, engaging, narrative journalism at a time when mainstream media houses seem to have given up on long-form writing and news television has blurred or altogether erased the lines between news and slapstick entertainment. We at Punjab Today believe that readers such as yourself appreciate cerebral journalism, and would like you to hold us against the best international industry standards. Brickbats are welcome even more than bouquets, though an occasional pat on the back is always encouraging. Good journalism can be a lifeline in these uncertain times worldwide. You can support us in myriad ways. To begin with, by spreading word about us and forwarding this reportage. Stay engaged.

— Team PT





[1] 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 122 [next]1-5 of 610


Comment by: Prakasg

Very nice article sir ...loved reading it...

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