Monday, July 7, 2014

Amid Modi’s Centrist Shift, an Aide With a Turbulent Past Rises

This is disturbing, no idea why Modi needs to appease to the right, however, his centrist approach may affect the extremists of his party to come to the center, in which case this approach may be considered, even though it is the case of good end with through bad means. this is not good for Modi, the Modi he is defining himself to be.

Mike Ghouse


Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagging a train run in Kashmir.CreditGovernment Information Dept/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
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MUZAFFARNAGAR, India — Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s new junior minister for agriculture, Sanjeev Balyan, is a first-time officeholder famous for precisely one thing: After two Hindu men were killed in an altercation with Muslims in his district last summer, he rallied crowds of angry young men from his caste, urging them to protect their own kind.
At the time, the police listed Dr. Balyan, a veterinarian, as one of 14 politicians who addressed a crowd that was armed with bamboo clubs and sticks. Their report summarizes the politicians’ message in blunt terms. “Wherever we will find people belonging to the Muslim community, by killing them, we will get our revenge,” the report says.
A week later, mobs of armed Hindu men descended on local villages, leaving around 60 people, mostly Muslims, dead and prompting tens of thousands of Muslims to flee their homes. Dr. Balyan, who had been jailed before the violence, was charged with incitement.
It was an echo of the episode that has haunted Mr. Modi’s political career for more than a decade. In 2002, not long after Mr. Modi had taken office as chief minister of Gujarat, riots broke out after Hindu pilgrims burned to death in a train. Some Hindus blamed Muslims for setting the blaze, and weeks of bloodletting followed. More than 1,200 people died, most of them Muslims. Mr. Modi, who has close ties to right-wing Hindu organizations, was long blamed for failing to stop the killing.
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Timeline of the Riots in Modi’s Gujarat

Explore key developments in the 2002 riots in Gujarat that shadowed Narendra Modi’s ascent to the prime minister’s office.
As he campaigned to become prime minister earlier this year, Mr. Modi assiduously avoided religious issues, hewing to the economic growth platform that carried him to a landslide victory. In his early days in office he has tried to set a conciliatory, centrist tone, and some of his decisions since taking power have disappointed his far-right backers.
So it is curious to find Dr. Balyan in such a high-profile post, unless you consider the raw math of political payback. On the heels of an ugly episode of religious polarization, Dr. Balyan won election to Parliament in a landslide, delivering this sugarcane-producing region in the politically vital state of Uttar Pradesh into the hands of Mr. Modi’s center-right Bharatiya Janata Party for the first time in 15 years. His presence in the cabinet is a reminder that stoking such divisions remains a way to win votes, something that Mr. Modi still needs to do in order to build up a team of regional allies in the coming months and years.
“You see,” said Neerja Chowdhury, a political analyst, “it is one ballgame to win an election and an entirely different ballgame to run a country like India.”
The violence that tore through the Muzaffarnagar district last August began with an ordinary quarrel. Gaurav, an 18-year-old Hindu man from the Jat caste, was eating in a marketplace. A 24-year-old Muslim cloth merchant on a motorcycle asked him to move his bicycle. He refused, according to Gaurav’s father, Ravindra Kumar.
Sharp words were exchanged — and the Muslim man slapped Gaurav, who returned later with a group of relatives. In the brawl, the cloth merchant was fatally stabbed, and Gaurav and his cousin Sachin, 24, were beaten to death, their bodies sprawled on the dusty, bloodstained road.
By the next day, political parties had gotten involved on both sides, demanding that the guilty parties be arrested. A Muslim member of Parliament from a lower-caste party attended the last rites for the cloth merchant, according to Mohammad Irshad, a local imam. Though the Bharatiya Janata Party was not traditionally strong in the region, high-ranking officials became regular visitors to the Jat areas, making the three-hour journey from New Delhi.
But the true local champion was Dr. Balyan, 42, whose father is a Hindu activist and farmer from a nearby town. Divendra Singh, a cousin of the dead Hindu men, said Dr. Balyan managed to remove the names of several relatives, including Mr. Singh, from the criminal complaint about the Muslim man’s death.
Alok Priyadarshi, Muzaffarnagar’s rural superintendent of police, said that the authorities were prompted to take action after a group of 14 politicians addressed a gathering of thousands of men armed with sticks, four days after the deadly brawl, which “turned the situation from bad to worse by whipping up passions.” Of the 14, 12 were affiliated with the Bharatiya Janata Party.
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Anshul Panwar, 31, a farmer who said he attended the gathering, described “such immense anger amongst the Hindus around here,” and recalled that Dr. Balyan “was talking like the rest of the leaders, that we must do our all to save the honor of our daughters and sisters.”
Dr. Balyan and the other leaders were detained several days later in what the police described as a preventive measure. In June, investigators submitted charges against them for “promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion,” and disobeying and obstructing public servants, said Manoj Kumar Jha, who headed the investigative team.
In an interview in his new office in New Delhi, Dr. Balyan played down the importance of the charges, which he described as “the kind of case which can be slapped against anyone for political reasons.”
He said he bore no responsibility for the violence because it broke out when he was in jail.
If he had not been behind bars, he said, “I would have tried my best to make sure the riots didn’t happen.”
The weekend after the gathering brought another huge meeting of Hindu men — and a burst of violence. Groups of men armed with machetes and clubs coursed through the streets of Kutba Kutbi, Dr. Balyan’s home village, some chanting “Go to Pakistan, or go to the graveyard,” said Muslims who fled the village that day.
They set fire to the mosque and Muslims scattered, some taking shelter on their roofs and others plunging into sugarcane fields. As Muslims fled the village, “We saw body parts lying about,” said Mohammad Shahid, 29. Eight men and one woman were killed in that one village, residents said, listing out the names.
Indramani Tripathi, a top civil official in Muzaffarnagar, said, “I have never seen anything like it, and I hope and pray I never see such a situation again.”
His junior minister for agriculture, Sanjeev Balyan.CreditSonu Mehta/Hindustan Times, via Getty Images
None of the village’s Muslims have returned to their homes. Though Hindus from Qutba occasionally pass through the new Muslim settlement, they do not stop, and the two groups regard each other with cold distrust, braced for new violence. Mohammad Jafar Siddiqui, 32, grimaced when asked about Dr. Balyan’s new post.
“For his role in shedding the blood of innocents,” he said, “he was rewarded with a ministership.”
Discussions of last September’s riots have been, to a great extent, eclipsed by the seismic political events of the spring, when the Bharatiya Janata Party made a stunning showing in Uttar Pradesh, winning 71 out of 80 parliamentary seats.
But voters in Uttar Pradesh were not exactly swept up in the Modi wave, with 62 percent of them saying they would have voted for the B.J.P. regardless of its leader, according to the Center for the Study of Developing Societies. Indeed, in his campaigning Dr. Balyan often explicitly departed from Mr. Modi’s centrist message.
“I will not talk of development; this is not the time to talk development,” he told one crowd, in April, according to The Indian Express. “The verdict from this area must be one-sided. You know what to do. There is nothing more for me to say.”
Asked what had caused this major shift in voting patterns, virtually everyone in the Muzaffarnagar district pointed to the riots. And political analysts, searching for an explanation of why Mr. Modi had selected a junior minister with such a controversial past, reached the same conclusion: The position needed to go to a Jat, and he was available.
On a recent afternoon, Dr. Balyan’s father, Surendra Singh, was lounging on the veranda of his farmhouse in Qutba with a group of friends. They swelled with pride as they discussed the new minister. “This boy is fast in his work like a cheetah,” said one man. “He is as swift and agile as a cheetah.”
To a question about the B.J.P.’s victory, Mr. Singh responded cheerfully.
“Let me tell you a small story,” he said, and launched into a detailed narration of Gaurav’s death, which he said had set off the chain of events that culminated in his son’s election. It wasn’t hard to get details, since Ravindra Kumar, Gaurav’s father, happened to be sitting beside him.
“There was total polarization — the Hindus were on one side, and the Muslims were on the other side, and it worked in his favor,” Mr. Singh said. “Because of what happened to that family, the Hindus united. And for the next 100 years, we will make sure this remains a B.J.P. bastion.”

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Poet translates Gita into Urdu couplets

The work was done in 1935 and the book has been avaialble

Poet translates Gita into Urdu couplets

Noted Urdu poet Anwar Jalalpuri, who has translated the Shrimad Bhagwad Gita into over 1,700 Urdu couplets, says the sacred scripture is the biggest literature on worldly education in the country.
Urdu Shayari mein Gita was released by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav recently. The book not only translates ‘shlokas’ (verses) in chaste Urdu ‘shers’ (couplets) but also comes across as an effort to recapture the essence of the sacred text. — PTI

Mike Ghouse 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

10 Indians With The Most Unfortunate Names

OMG, I am still laughing... its unfortunate that parents give odd names - may be it is a good name in one language but it is really bad in other languages. I have always wondered about such names... of course what is in a name!

Enjoy and if you know other names, write in the comments section below.


10 Indians With The Most Unfortunate Names
Courtesy Daily Moss

Some Indian parents always want their kids to be incredibly different from others, so they try to give the kids unique names. But, it turns out that many of them are not too creative. Mind it, choosing a right baby name is always tough!

One of the worst things about having a funny name is that you can’t change it, and you are going to live with the ‘odd name’ for your whole life. Sometimes, your name is too embarrassing that you don’t even want to introduce it to others, and you feel humiliated everytime when your friends call your ‘name’.  And some of your evil friends will literally mock you. You can’t blame your parents too, they had given unique names because they loved you, and there is always a reason.

Lucky people out there, here are some of the most funniest Indian names that will make you say ‘thanks parents’. Tiger Shroff, yours is very unfortunate too.

1. His father knew it but he didn’t care much about history.

This guy said he never had problems getting a visa, but had been interrogated by immigration staff many times. Adolf Lu Hitler Marak once said he is a different guy because of his name.

2. Imagine that awkward feeling he must be having everytime he remembers his surname.


3. Napoleon + Einstein = genius


4. Some people landed up in controversy for intentionally mispronouncing her name.

One political disadvantage of having a funny name.

5. No no…not our PM Modi. He is a surgeon.


6. Anu is a nice name but it doesn’t go well with ‘apostrophe’.


7. Bihari…what? But, does it matter when you have over 32 years of working experience?


8. So you think your life is too hard?funniestIndianname

9. And this


10. And finally, we come to know that our Bollywood star Jackie Shroff isn’t too creative in ‘naming babies’.



What’s your lucky name? Now, tell us some of the funniest names you have ever heard of. There is a comment section below for you to entertain us.There was this Goan lady by the name of Rosemary who married Mr. Lele. She got so sick of introducing a herself as Rosemary Lele that she divorced and left. A year later she ended up marrying Mr. Marlow.

Huggendra Singh

Fuckruddin Randwalla.  |

Devendra macchar

Dilip Kamchor

Monday, June 16, 2014

Dilip Kumar's Autobiography released - Dallas edition


Dilip Kumar is an Indian Phenomenon and is one of the three original icons of Indian cinema; they set the standards of acting in India. Indeed, he is the only living legend of India Cinema.

In the last 50 years, almost every major actor has taken pride in acting like Dilip Kumar - from Amitabh Bachhan to Rajendra Kumar and several in between.

His autobiography is released now, and in the synopsis, two things caught my eye.

The story he tells about his sister dressing down his barber for sitting in the drawing room, and Dilip apologizing to the Barber for the mistreatment and having words with his sister.

I see a whole lot more about this man here - humility for one, and treating people with dignity and respect and considering others on par. The age old saying, great men are humble beings is so true.

Some 20 years ago he was here in Dallas with AFMI - two things happened during his stay.

First he was booked in Richardson Omni Hotel, probably for proximity to the venue, it was not a five star hotel - Taj Bhai and I were assigned to take care of them, when we checked them in - Saira Banu went around checking the pillows... she was not happy with the room size and its furnishings and made it known, she was looking to be in a five star hotel. Indeed, once Lata Mangeshkar was placed in Lowes Anatole for precisely that reason, and a few others have done it too.  Amitabh Bacchan would have demanded the whole floor.

I was absorbing it all, and before we could do something about it, Dilip said to Saira - this program is for charity, the money saved is going to benefit the education of children, let's stay here.... Need I say more about his humility?

Second item involved Raj Sharma - a budding actor of Dallas. I was in charge of setting up meetings with Dilip including the media. So, Raj walks in as scheduled, touches Dilip's feet and sits down on the floor - a Indian tradition to show respect to the elders... within a few seconds Raj said to Dilip - that he is going to acting school and will be an actor soon... amazing thing happened then.! Dilip got up, gave a hand to Raj, pulled him up and asked him to sit face to face across on the other chair.... and said, "We are now on par".

There were a few more rich conversations in those 2 or three days with Dilip, and will write some other time. In the limo we spent nearly 4 hours on the road, and had some great conversations. Dilip and Saira were in Bangalore before they came here, that was a historic week in India - every where Milk was seen flowing from Ganesh and they had just seen that... then I had a conversation about Pluralism and some of the remarks he made, made me a greater fan of him. I was completely taken back receiving Saira Banu at the airport, she was the kashimir ki kali hoon may, mujh se na rootho babuji... and I saw the auntiji in Saira and wondered for a long time about our images of people years ago... and thought of Rip Van Winkle story.Mike Ghouse is an Indian American Public Speaker, thinker and a writer committed to offer pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

# # #

Why Dilip Kumar refused to work with Nargis in Mother India

Arindam Mukherjee  New Delhi, June 16, 2014 | UPDATED 19:36 IST

Film actor Dilip Kumar's autobiography is a delight for lovers of Hindi cinema. Titled 'Dilip Kumar: The Substance And The Shadow', and narrated by veteran journalist and writer Udaytara Nayar, the book is rich with trivia and anecdotes from the life of the veteran actor. In this book, the thespian opened his heart for the first time to speak about acting, family, co-workers and lovers, the people who influenced and changed his life.

Many Bollywood celebs including, Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, attended the autobiography launch.

Here are 10 nuggets, among plenty else, from the book:

1. On his first appearance on the screen in Jwar Bhata: "When I saw myself on the screen, I asked myself: 'Is this how I am going to perform in the films that may follow if the studio wishes to continue my services?!' My response was: 'No.' I realised that this was a difficult job and, if I had to continue, I would have to find my own way of doing it. And the critical question was: HOW?"

2. On his love for Madhubala "Did it happen with me? Was I in love with Madhubala as the newspaper and magazines reported at that time? As an answer to this oft-repeated question straight from the horse's mouth, I must admit that I was attracted to her both as a fine co-star and as a person who had some of the attributes I hoped to find in a woman at that age and time... She, as I said earlier, was very sprightly and vivacious and, as such, she could draw me out of my shyness and reticence effortlessly

3. On his break-up with Madhubala, the actor says the relationship soured during the making of Mughal-e-Azam. Remembering the most sensuous scene from the movie he says: "The outcome was that halfway through the production of 'Mughal-e-Azam' we were not even talking to each other. The classic scene with the feather coming between our lips, which set a million imaginations on fire, was shot when we had completely stopped even greeting each other."

4. The actor refused a role in Mother India because he had romanced Nargis in his previous two films. "When Mehboob [Khan] sahab discussed Mother India with me in the early 1950s, I thought it was a brilliant and timely concept and it had to be made at any cost. The role he could offer me was one of the sons of heroine Nargis and I pointed out that it would be an incongruous casting after all the romancing she and I had done in earlier films, such as Mela (1948) and Babul (1950).

5.  On his love for outdoor shooting, he reminisced the making of Bimal Roy's Madhumati. "To us - Pran, Johnny Walker, Bimalda, Hrishida (Hrishikesh Mukherjee) and me - the time after 'pack-up' was very interesting. We got over the pressure of the day's work by spending the evenings in cheerful conversation and poetic exchanges while the cooks in the unit readied our dinner. Pran and I got along famously talking in Punjabi while Bimalda and Hrishida tried to outdo us in Bengali... It used to be a little awkward the following day when Pran had to brim with hostility as the negative character in the script. I must say he was amazingly true to the character Ugranarayan."

6. A stickler for rehearsals before his performance, Dilip Kumar says that actress "Devika Rani had advised me and all the actors she employed at Bombay Talkies that it was important to rehearse till a level of competence to perform was achieved. In the early years, it was a necessity for me to rehearse, but, even in the later years, her advice stayed with me when I had to match a benchmark I had mentally set for myself. In fact, I am aware that I am known for the number of rehearsals I do for even what seems to be a simple scene."

7.  On his famous hairstyle, and his barber: "The poor man [his barber] always had a problem with my hair which grew at jet speed, demanding fortnightly trimming. He was constantly crestfallen by my hair's refusal to be combed back and kept in place the way he wanted...The barber came home one afternoon and I had instructed him to wait if I did not reach the house on time. He took the liberty of sitting in the drawing room and my eldest sister took it as impudence on his part and gave him a dressing down, which was in progress when I made my entry. I apologised to him and I found him more bewildered than angry. Later, I took up the matter with Sakina Aapa [elder sister] and we had an unpleasant spat."

8. The evening of 23 August 1966, when Dilip Kumar met Saira Banu and fell in love: "When I alighted from my car and entered the beautiful garden that leads to the house, I can still recall my eyes falling on Saira standing in the foyer of her new house looking breathtakingly beautiful in a brocade sari. I was taken aback, because she was no longer the young girl I had consciously avoided working with because I thought she would look too young to be my heroine. She had indeed grown to full womanhood and was in reality more beautiful than I thought she was."

9. The actor learned how to play a sitar for the movie Kohinoor (1960). The movie "will remain etched in my mind for the efforts I made to learn to play the sitar. It was another chance for me to test my flair for the comedy genre in acting... I enjoyed the making of Kohinoor also for the camaraderie that grew between me and Meena Kumari after Azaad as we, who were known for our forte with  emotional drama and tragedy, came together for another light-hearted film.

10. Amitabh Bachchan was mesmerised by Dilip Kumar's performance in Gunga Jamuna. "Recently, while we were chatting casually, Amitabh Bachchan mentioned to me that he had repeatedly viewed Gunga Jumna as a student in Allahabad to understand how a Pathan was effortlessly playing a rustic character of UP and speaking the dialect with such ease," said the actor in his book.