HOME | ABOUT US | Speaker | Americans Together | Videos | www.CenterforPluralism.com | Please note that the blog posts include my own articles plus selected articles critical to India's cohesive functioning. My articles are exclusively published at www.TheGhouseDiary.com You can send an email to: MikeGhouseforIndia@gmail.com

Saturday, March 17, 2018

India Bulletin, March 18, 2018

What can we do for India?

India is at a dangerous curve now – you can laugh all you want to laugh. But if we don’t wake up and restore our democracy, each one of us will lose at the end.

Here are a few things we can do;

The survival of democracy hinges on accountability of the actions of the elected, and that will remain intact with significant opposition.  Whether it is the US, India or any democracy, evil decisions have been made when the same party runs the admin and the two houses. We are responsible for making sure checks and balances are in place. I urge even the BJP members to vote for opposition parties just so we have strong opposition. Democracy is what has allowed everyone to flourish, and we cannot abandon that value by giving a landslide victory to any party anywhere.

India has a bad reputation with the US Commission on Religious Freedom (USCRIF). India has not allowed the commissioners to visit India to verify the "alleged” violations of religious freedom in India.  If the government has not done anything wrong, we will get a clean chit, and if we have wronged, we have to fix it.  We are a democracy; we should not prevent anyone from an inquiry.

India risks in-flow of foreign directs investment, if Modi government does not take the responsibility to stop the lynching, harassment, rapes, and injustice to fellow Indians, the investors may pull out of India, as they did with the Apartheid South Africa.  There is a word brewing out there that someday the conservatives want to test our loyalty. They want to know if ever India and US were to be at odds, would we be loyal to America? I know, most of us were not loyal when the US levied sanctions on India upon Pokhran blast, I did a three-hour radio talk show on the topic and was embarassed with the attitudes of fellow Indians Americans. 

What makes you invest in a community or a nation? Apparently, profits and security for your investments are the essential reasons.  If a country is messed up with civil strife and religious conflicts, it is bound to create chaotic situations caused by lynching, harassment, and discrimination of people.  It is in our interest to work for religious freedom across the globe. Let every Indian has the freedom to eat, drink, wear or believe whatever the hell he or she wants to feel.  If you make life difficult for one, all will be paying for it.

We need to reign in on loonies like Yogi Adityanath, in his Raj, you will see more farmers will be committing suicides.  Their bread and butter income comes from selling the animals they raise, if they are afraid to sell it or walk with the animal, their source of income is cut off – giving them no choice but commit suicides.

 On the other hand, the Cows are considered mother by the Hindu community, but they show utter disregard for her.  The farmers will chase them out of their crop fields which will put them on the streets eating trash, and when they die, they will rot on the streets. No one will dare take the cow anywhere for fear of lynching.  However, the beneficiaries are a wealthy few BJP members who will sell the animals to the slaughterhouse for export income. What a hypocrisy! The farmers will lose out both ways as more arable land will be out of crop productions.

 Modern India was built on freedom, a great foundation that gave people the freedom to get along with each other.  But with the injection of religious politics by that infamous Rath Yatra by Advani, Indians were pit against each other for political gains.  A few Hindus may rejoice lynching Muslims, raping Dalit women, burning Adivasis, beating up on Christians – but at the end, the ones who cheer will also meet the same fate in the hands of the tyrants.  We need to have a strong opposition that pushes the government to do the work and not dupe Indians about things that don’t put food on their tables.

The majority of Indian Americans enjoy the freedoms we have in America; we have complete freedom to eat, drink, wear and believe whatever the hell we want, let's work on the similar liberties to our fellow humans in India.  None of us like to be discriminated, why should we allow that to happen to others?

I have urged the Hindu America Foundation to take the lead and work on getting the visas to the commissioners. If they don't want to do it, then the average Indian American needs to take up the issue. We have to save India by doing the right thing and free ourselves from lousy label put on us.

If the investors pull out of India, every Indian will be hurt. We have the responsibility to correct ourselves and ensure prosperity to India for ages to come. 

Mike Ghouse

Pluralism News from the Center for Pluralism, March 18, 2018


Religious freedom in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh

Friday, March 9, 2018 –Washington, D.C., -- The South Asia working group’s initial report to the International Religious Freedom Round-table. There is a dire need to address the violations of religious and political freedoms in South Asia comprising the nations of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Full report   http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/religious-freedom-in-india-pakistan.html

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar owes an apology to Hindus

His statements are fodder for conflicts. To suggest that Indians will go to civil war, no matter how supreme court decides is ridiculous.  He does not respect the majority of moderate Hindus and Muslims who have accepted the verdicts of Supreme court in the past without creating a mess.  http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/sri-sri-ravi-shankar-owes-apology-to.html

Nupur Sharma’s take on Aamir Khan

It was a delight to hear about Mahatma Gandhi, my take is fairly identical to yours.  I am inspired by him – saw him in my dream twice, way back in early 70’s and again early 90’s., both the times, he pats on my back and say, beta tujhe bahut kaam karnay hain. Every year on his birth and death, I publish something or the other about him.  My work on Pluralism is inspired by him.  https://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/nupur-sharmas-take-on-aamir-khan.html

BJP and Congress Trolls

The difference between BJP and Congress parties is same as between GOP and Democratic party in America.   For example, the Republican would say, “We will win the war, chase Bin Laden to the far ends of the world and catch him” They display confidence, even though they know they cannot do it, but the frightened public falls for that line. On the other hand, Democrats will not exhibit that confidence; because their reasoning minds hold them from making tall claims, but Obama got Bin Laden without making a big deal, but Democrats would not have made the statement about GOP.  Check out every statement made by both sides and study it yourselves.  Both are wrong; there should be a right mix of optimism and pragmatism. https://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/bjp-and-congress-trolls.html

Meaning of the sound OM (Aum)

I am pleased to share the “Aum” or “Om” sound and its essence. Every faith has evolved over a period of time and has gained wider meaning as the societies interact with each other. http://centerforpluralism.com/hindu-the-meaning-of-om-aum/

Caste Systems – books to read

Caste System in India may have originated with the idea of division of labor, that each person will do what he is capable of. However, it was really a piss poor attitude of men in power to keep the others oppressed to serve them in a variety of ways. The Caste system is an instrument of oppression. Eleven books are recommended to understand it. https://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/caste-system-books-to-understand-it.html

Democracy in Peril by Swami Agnivesh

A democracy is in peril when the people believe, willingly and eagerly, in illusions and falsehoods. This happens because they renounce the rational outlook and embrace a magical worldview in which someone with a magic wand comes and solves their problems. 

Asaduddin Owaisi – The villain of Indian Democracy and Indian Muslims

Tipu Sultan could have chased the British out of India but for Purnaiah, who compromised Tipu’s position. Now,  Asaduddin Owaisi of AIMM is doing precisely that; weakening the rightful Muslim representation in governance.  Of the 29 Muslim contestants in Uttar Pradesh, 19 could have easily won had Owasi not poked the elections with his divisive candidates. Look at the chart how thin the losses are. He is pure rhetoric and that will not change the lives of Indian Muslims but generate ill-will  http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2018/03/owaisi-villain-of-indian-democracy-and.html

I am offended by your attitude.

If you criticize India, I have a problem, not with you but with your attitude. But, I have no problem if you criticize the governments run by Congress or BJP. Governments come and go, Prime Ministers come and go, but India remains a nation, and a nation is made up of people, and we have come a long way – to the point of respecting the otherness of others, giving dignity to each human. 

If you don't criticize your government, it amounts to giving them free reigns and amounts to chamchagiri. By criticising Rahul or Modi, we will be putting them on their toes to do the right thing.  We do have a percent of bad guys like all other nations, but they are less than one percent of the population. The country is not the same as the government. We have had crooks as ministers, religious men, teachers, generals, business and civic leaders; they are exceptions and not the rule. So, if you criticize India, you are barking at the wrong tree, you are wasting your time. Criticize the individuals; I am okay with it, and not their nation, religion or race. If not, be ready to engage in a dialogue. If you cannot, take a hike.

Mike Ghouse

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