Posted in Socio-Political-Economic

The Invisible Foreign Hand: Conversions

The Breaking India Forces At Work In North East

This is merely the tip of the iceberg: in continuation of posts on the scourge of Conversion in India. Limiting the scope here to North East and Kerala.

The British did not decamp in entirety from India in 1947, with the Christian missionaries in the country opting to stay put spreading the gospel. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru’s Congress government apparently had no issues on that. Prime minister Nehru, with his communist Defence minister and cabinet ally V R Krishna Menon who could be singly held responsible for Sin0-Indian war of 1962, was bent on projecting the secular face of India at the expense of conversion of vast majority of North East Indians to Christianity, in miraculous span of a couple of decades. The  Christian missionaries who were by this time deeply entrenched in the hilly tracts of the east Himalayan states, did not stop with their evangelical work in sovereign Indian soil. They were also actively engaged on the other hand in abetting openly the Nagas to seek their independence from the newly constituted Indian union on the basis of religion to whose ’cause’ the British government claimed to be ‘sympathetic.’ The economic and military support that armed the Nagas to the teeth must have misguided the Nagas. It is no surprise that the British when they left India also generously offered similar ‘friendly pacts’ to small Hindu princes whose kingdoms were unilaterally fused with the union of India, by the sheer will of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, the Home Minister and Deputy PM. Kashmir is a case in point. Kashmir would not have gone to the United Nations if not for India’s last serving British Governor General, Mount Batten. Lessons learned from Kashmir probably helped India when it came to dealing with Nagaland. British journalists were writing of the ‘Naga plight’ in their national dailies (among other concerns of theirs about India whose survival was predicted not beyond ‘five years’ by none other than prime minister Winston Churchill.) The British government no doubt underestimated the newly resurgent independent India, advising the young Indian nation to ‘let go of the Naga.’ Phizo, the chief rebel Naga leader of NNC (Naga National Council) was granted political asylum in Britain. Ever since, Nagaland has been a thorn in our flesh, with our tribal brethren alienated from us on widespread conversion, wanting to sever ties with the Indian republic. Nagas have exercised their adult franchise in the past with rest of India, yet the divisive lines have always been left open like festering wounds.

This tweet gives one a picture of the level of Christian conversion taking place in Nagaland from before 1947 and how it went unchecked for decades after independence, with foreign missionaries pumping in NGO funding and extending moral support.

Once a majority of populace in any state in India is converted to non-Hindu/non Indic such as Abrahamic with Middle Eastern origin, it may be possible to entrap/enroll them in larger schemes such as ‘Breaking India’ missions. Nagaland could never have been independent but would have been absorbed by China. Kashmir can never been independent. Its strategic location would make it the next Afghanistan in no time (if not for India). The buffer states of Kashmir and North East India do not only function as shock absorbers securing and safe-guarding the rest of India, but are also preventing themselves from turning into next casualty, on the strength derived from Force India.

Nagaland geography is another critical point. Sandwiched between China and East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), Nagaland and the even the rest of the north-east, is a security issue for India. The unsolved Naga equation has been an irritant for Indian nation for long. The entire North East India is a sensitive strip.

One cannot help quoting in this context, the UK’s war with Argentina at the start of the 1980s, for Falkland Islands which must legitimately belong to the South American nation. The havoc the British have wrecked in their erstwhile colonies leaving loopholes deliberately unplugged with an intent to cause trouble at a future date, is now coming to surface as evident in Sri Lanka, Malaysia etc where (violent) communal strifes have erupted in recent years. The Englishman played one ethnic group against another before going back home for good. Legacy of the British policy of ‘Divide and Rule.’

The BJP win in Nagaland raises hope. The Nagas have finally come home. It may not be too late either to correct the injustices and mistakes committed by the Congress government for 60 long years in the Seven-Sister-States of India. A ‘Gharwapsi’ is our legitimate right. A reversal of the conditions back to pre-missionary era should hardly raise the liberals’ eyebrows.

The BJP sweep in North East leaves Kerala as the single and only remaining Communist state of India. The 20+ years of Communist regime in the state of Tripura has been brought to a close.

Like the North Eastern India, Kerala too is victim to calculated and widespread conversion (to Christianity).

In the case of Kerala, I am to deal with a peculiar issue here that hardly draws the attention of our government or agencies that it deserves.

I have been been following a few Elephant care groups in the social media Facebook. The unnatural, abnormal concern  of foreign nationals for the Indian elephants sparked my interest. It is with utmost certainty that I can vouch that, one hundred percent all the Elephant care groups in India are Evangelical missions sponsored by foreign church. To mention a case in point: Kerala Suffering Elephants. A quick browsing of the group’s content and members will reveal the vested interest of these foreign Christian evangelists/missionaries strangely in Indian elephants that are employed in service of Kerala Hindu temples (for centuries now as part of local custom and traditions). Now the domesticated elephants in Kerala are not restricted to Hindu temples; Churches and Mosques too use elephants for their festivals, however one finds no mention of Elephants maltreated and misused in non-Hindu places of worship.

The Christian missionaries in India are starting to feel the pinch, as the Modi government has successfully blocked the funding of hundreds of fake NGOs who were dubiously funding conversions in India. Kerala Communist government turns a blind eye to the shocking horror and reality unfolding in the state which could have a drastic impact on the future of the state which was overwhelmingly Hindu even at the time of our independence. Today, the Hindus of the state have been reduced to a minority due to flawed communist policies giving a free hand to overseas missions to carry out uncontrolled and unregulated conversions.

With one after  the other most avenues of funding closed, it is easy guess that the evangelists both local and foreign are targeting the Hindu temples using the Indian Elephants as their front. I am an Elephant lover myself. However it is not difficult for me to blow the cloak of the evangelist missions who are trying to wage a war on India on a different and altogether unbelievable front.

While the concern for the endangered species is appreciated, is it not ironic that almost all the foreign members of the Kerala Elephant  groups happen to have church connections. In a recent post in one more Elephant care group based in Africa, it was revealed how some fake Facebook groups in Europe and USA were duping the gullible, inviting them to fund Elephant conservation.

The multi-pronged threats faced by India from every direction one can think of, is alarming. The missionaries are clearly cooling their heels waiting for the return of the Congress government which will undoubtedly give them a free run with funding for conversion in the country. Unabated conversions were happening until the BJP formed the government. Even as of today, illegal conversions are taking place in every state of India including Tamil Nadu. The last time I visited home, I was shocked to learn two of my friends’ maids had been bribed to conversion by ‘Aseervadham’ church in Anna Nagar, Chennai. In Pulla Avenue, I was witness to evangelists going shop to shop offering bribes for conversions to petty shop owners and pavement stall holders.

This when they talk about the Saffron surge and VHP and Shiv Sena and RSS and Hindutva. Right under the nose of Bharatiya Janata Party.

Posted in Socio-Political-Economic

JOURNALISM AND MEDIA IN INDIA, A SHAME AND FARCE

 

It was not A CROWD Scroll guys, it was a group of seven KERALA MUSLIM YOUTH who beat up and murdered tribal Madhu who stole after all their rice because he was hungry.  And he did not go to them, they came visiting his place. The murderers went on to click selfies with the victim committing the criminal offence, torturing mercilessly the mentally unstable poor man to death . Indian media along with foreign media that went screeching for months endless about beef lynching cases using the word ‘Hindu’ a million times can’t be more quieter now when it comes to mentioning the killers identity. Religious affiliation. The beef lynching cases were hardly one or two, isolated incidents, blown out of proportion by the same media not so long ago.

https://scroll.in/article/869801/it-was-a-merciless-act-says-mother-of-adivasi-youth-murdered-by-mob-in-kerala

The champions of Dalit causes who were in the forefront defending Kanhaiya Kumar of JNU (a PhD scholar in ‘very relevant’ ‘African Studies’ over 30 years of age, drawing a stipend of 25,000/- rupees per month from tax payer money, for over 5-8 years now) along with Umar Khalid (another PhD no-gooder at tax payer expense) who raised anti-national slogans, have gone eerily quiet now. The crusaders for Rohit Vemula who committed suicide, find themselves unable to print that seven muslim youth in COMMUNIST SECULAR KERALA have in fact killed in cold blood a poor SC tribal (Adivasi of scheduled tribe caste).

But this is not the first time that Indian media play mum when minority men happened to commit heinous crime against Hindus. An illegal Bangladeshi immigrant from Assam brutally raped, mutilated and murdered a 29 year old Dalit woman in Kerala only last year. The murderer’s name was shielded maximum possible extent by our media. Whenver (and as in most cases) when the minorities commit crimes in India, it is general media practice in India to omit mentioning the offenders’ faith.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/kerala-dalit-woman-s-rape-murder-convict-ameer-ul-islam-gets-death-sentence/story-2JkzDeKkVJzT9fW6fld15J.html

Leave alone the protection of identity that goes with the worst offender of Nirbhaya gangrape case in Delhi, Mohammad Afroz, who was the one to insert a foreign object (rod) into Nirbhaya – who was let off the hook because he was short of 18 years (the legal majority age) by 6 months, with the courts counting him juvenile delinquent. Activists in India were up in their arms in favour of the mastermind criminal, holding banners for his release. This criminal is now on loose and has supposedly sneaked into southern India. His identity and name were leaked by some good samaritans for public safety and security.

Very recently a Hindu youth was beheaded by a muslim family for the only reason he fell in love with their daughter.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/they-killed-my-son-in-front-of-my-eyes/article22638998.ece

If you study this Hindu newspaper/online report, you can notice, how careful they are not to mention the word ‘muslim’ anywhere when it comes to naming the criminals. As much as possible they desist from referring the killers at all. Journalistic skills. How to write on a gruesome murder yet save the skin of the assailant. It is a one-sided affair. They only stopped short of reporting that Ankit beheaded himself.

Even Pakistanis seem to have an ounce of ethics and honesty surprisingly:

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1625669/3-muslim-family-beheads-hindu-man-love-affair-india/

In contrast, how many times, the word ‘Hindu’ gets used for minor isolated crimes committed by anyone in the majority.

It is suggested to take a peek into the police records nationwide and determine (or rather establish), who are mostly India’s smugglers, drug dealers, pimps, fake note printers, terrorists, other violent offenders. Hindus, Christians commit white collar crimes, admittedly. Presently I am leaving it at that.

But here is a video proof of a Chrisitian NGO suspected of foul play in the case of unexplained death of over 1,590 destitute poor near Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu. So far, no national tv channel has evinced interest in this gruesome case where the dead were buried without civic authority’s approval in cement cellars. Speculation is that this is a racket for bone and organ harvesting.

Why are Timesnow and Republic tv news channels not investigating this (literally) grave issue.

https://swarajyamag.com/insta/gruesome-details-emerge-as-christian-ngo-is-accused-of-organ-harvesting-in-tamil-nadu

After engaging in pedophilia and relentless illegal conversions, this is the next vital news on Christian evangelists sponsored by foreign church in Indian soil, waiting desperately for CBI attention and action. 1590 deaths in record 7 years. Yet the story not picked up by the Hindu, Times of India, Indian Express or Scroll.

Where is NDTV now.

The other day there was a report in NDTV on how Kashmiri muslims were sprucing up a Shiva temple in Kashmir for Shiv Ratri. Not a single Kashmiri Hindu pundit in sight. Either butchered or banished from the valley by way of ethnic cleansing long ago. But these guys were proud, drum-beating how magnanimous really their ‘terrorist’ brethren were.  This is insane! Or is the temple becoming another Ayodhya, turned into ‘their’ place of worship really?

I am searching for a report on how ‘Agraharams’ in Tamil Nadu towns have been taken over by the minority and the Hindu names have been struck down and replaced with ‘their’ names. Even centuries old temples are not spared, converted to ‘their’ worhsip places or religious schools. This was a Whatsapp message by someone who toured Kumbakonam, Tanjore etc taking pictures. The concrete proofs were the photographs which point to a bleak future for the Hindus in very near future. Not a single Ayodhya – we have a thousand Ayodhyas in the making silently and we can do nothing about it in our own country, when we are the majority Hindu. This is secularism and democracy in India.

So this is just a brief compilation by me. Like the tip of the iceberg. India is the only country in the world where the majority Hindu continue to get persecuted, lied to by our own media owned by foreign Christian missionaries who fund them and direct them, where criminals can get away committing heinous crimes against the majority Hindu with the immunity that comes with their minority status,

OWNERSHIP OF INDIAN MEDIA BY CHRISTIAN MISSIONARIES

https://indianpeoplescongress.wordpress.com/2016/05/09/indian-media-is-owned-by-foreigners-is-the-report-correct/

Here is a lengthy read (cut and paste job from Quora in bold indigo, which explains it all): please give it a patient reading, it is an eye opener like none. (Data though not updated).

1. Hindustan Times – Shobhna Bhartia, owner and editor-in-chief of Hindustan Times is a Congress MP from Rajya Sabha.

2. Vinod Sharma, HT Political Affairs editor, is essentially a Congress spokesman on all TV panel discussions, because once his boss’ term gets over, he will be looking out for her RS seat next

3.  Barkha Dutt and Vir Sanghvi, famous Congress stooges (and  intermediaries for UPA allies) who were exposed in the Radiagate  scandal, and are virtual Congress spokespersons in their capacities as  electronic media personalities, are the ones who write opinion and op-ed  columns most frequently (once every week) on the editorial pages of HT.  In return, Barkha and Sanghvi are rewarded with Padma Shris and other  monetary compensation by the Nehru dynasty or Congress party.

4.  NDTV’s promoters are Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy. Radhika’s sister  Brinda Karat is a famous CPM leader (well known for anti-Baba Ramdev  views) and Brinda’s husband Prakash Karat is the CPM Politburo General  Secretary (well known for preferring Congress over BJP). And Prannoy  Roy’s first cousin is the famous far-leftist pro-Maoist-Naxalite  pro-Kashmiri-terrorists “intellectual” Arundhati Suzanna Roy.

5. NDTV’s Barkha Dutt’s reality has already been exposed by me in above section.

6.  NDTV’s Sonia Singh is the wife of Uttar Pradesh Congress MP, Union  minister and ex-princely state ruler, Mr. R. P. N. Singh, who is one of  the fastest rising stars in the Congress party. If you remember, Sonia  Singh is a very high-profile anchor on NDTV whose pro-Congress anti-BJP  bias is legendary.

7.  NDTV’s Nidhi Razdan (high-profile anchor of Left Right Centre) is the  current girlfriend of J&K CM Omar Abdullah (after Omar recently  divorced his wife of several years and mother of his two children,  Payal). Nidhi Razdan is also famous for her legendary pro-Congress and  anti-BJP bias.

8.  CNN-IBN : Rajdeep Sardesai’s wife and co-promoter of CNN-IBN, Sagarika  Ghose, who anchors Face the Nation and is famous journalist of CNN-IBN  (well, her hubby is the owner-editor-in-chief after all) are famous  Congress stooges.

9.  Sagarika’s father Bhaskar Ghose was a famous sarkari babu and was made  the chief of Prasar Bharati (Doordarshan) during Indira and Rajiv  regimes. Bhaskar Ghose was well-known for personal loyalty to the Nehru  dynasty, and now his daughter and son-in-law are rewarded with their own  channel to do Congress propaganda.

10.  In fact Sagarika’s extended family even consists of her aunts Ruma Pal  (former Supreme Court justice and a close friend of the Nehru family)  and Arundhati Ghose (former diplomat and Indian ambassador to various  countries, predictably, under Congress regimes).

11.  Let’s now come to another famous CNN-IBN media personality who also  writes columns frequently for Hindustan Times — Karan Thapar. What you  may not know is that the Nehru family itself is related, through blood  and marriages, to the high-profile Thapar family. India’s Army chief  during the 1962 debacle against China, Gen. P. N. Thapar, is  brother-in-law of Nayantara Sehgal, the daughter of Vijaylakshmi Pandit  and niece of Jawaharlal Nehru. Gen. Thapar’s son is pro-Congress  journalist Karan Thapar. Gen. Thapar’s sister is Romila Thapar, a famous  “top” typical JNU Nehruvian communist ideologue historian, who gets to  write our textbooks and pollute them with pro-Congress Marxist  propaganda.

12. The HIndu – The Worst – N. Ram, owner and editor-in-chief (till February 2012) of The Hindu, was once a vice president of the Students Federation of India. SFI is the students’ wing of the CPM.

13.  P. Sainath of the The Hindu (acclaimed journalist well known for his,  again, unsurprisingly, typical left-wing Nehruvian communism ideology),  is the nephew of Congress politician V. Shankar Giri and the grandson of  V. V. Giri, ex-President of India and famous Congress politician. Giri  was especially known to be one of the first few staunch loyalists of  Indira, and whom Indira fielded for President elections against her own  party’s Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy, and who ultimately became the cause of  the first high-profile split in the Indian National Congress into  Congress (O) and Congress (I) — almost all the pre-independence regional  stalwarts split away to join Congress (O) or form their own state  parties, and the rest including Giri (all the loyalists of the Nehru  family staying on with Indira).

14.  Or even what about little known News24 Hindi media channel? Owned by  ex-journalist and editor Rajiv Shukla, famous Congress MP in Rajya  Sabha, Union minister, industrialist, BCCI vice president and IPL chairman.

15.  Or even what about little known Lokmat (and IBN Lokmat) that is Marathi  newspaper (and channel) in Maharashtra? Owner and editors-in-chief are  the brothers Vijay Darda (Congress MP) and Rajendra Darda (Congress MLA  in Maharashtra, and minister in state govt).

16.  Or even the other bigger and smaller media houses, such as The Times of  India and Indian Express, where the Nehru dynasty has managed to  infiltrate its loyalists such as Dileep Padgaonkar and Shekhar Gupta,  who are essentially paid stooges of the Congress party.

17. Vinod Mehta – Outlook editor has been well known to take anti BJP stand.

The  Congress (in fact just the one single family — the Nehru dynasty) has  been in power for 56 of the last 65 years of independence. This matters a  LOT. Personal relationships have been built, blackmail-worthy secrets  have been spied, monumental wealth has been accumulated … all by the one  single Nehru dynasty (and its family-business-cum-polit ical-party aka  Congress) that helps it maintain its tight irongrip over not just the  entire Indian mainstream media, but also deep into our bureaucracy, our  governmental institutions, and even our journalism and mass media  colleges and grad schools.

We  have probably not even scratched the surface of the network of family  and personal relationships through which the Nehru dynasty has  completely dominated and controlled the entire intellectual, historian  and journalist landscape of India. And we haven’t even talked about the monumental wealth or the  blackmailing secrets. All because the one single dynasty got to rule  over India for 60 years uninterrupted. It matters a LOT.

The  typical JNU Nehruvian communist left-libbers ideologues have really  perpetrated some kind of stranglehold on India’s journalism, media and  intellectual space.

Almost  all pro-BJP (or even centre-right ideologues) journalists have been  slowly thrown out of their jobs due to pressure from the Congress and  the Nehru family.

Even  the great venerable Ramnath Goenka, frustrated and broken by repeated  I-T raids and ED investigations ultimately had to fire Arun Shourie  twice from the Indian Express, which was once the best Indian newspaper  in the 1970s and 80s. That was the team — Goenka the owner, Shourie the  editor, and S. Gurumurthy the fearless journalist, that brought  political heavyweights like Indira Gandhi down on her knees and even  took on corporate honchos like Dhirubhai Ambani. (Ramnath Goenka  inspired the Mithun Chakraborty character and S. Gurumurthy inspired the  R. Madhavan character in the Ambani biopic “Guru”.)

But  very few centre-right ideologues are left in India’s media space today,  that too in minor publications like The Pioneer. Almost all the  mainstream media houses have been thoroughly infiltrated and coerced  into towing the Congress’ line, sometimes just through ideology and  relationships, and not even money power.

The  Congress party essentially owns and controls every single mainstream  media house in India, including Hindustan Times, The Times of India,  NDTV, CNN-IBN, The Hindu, Tehelka, Outlook, etc”

Let us see the ownership of different media agencies.

NDTV: A very popular TV news media is funded by Gospels of Charity in  Spain Supports Communism. Recently it has developed a soft corner  towards Pakistan because Pakistan President has allowed only this  channel to be aired in Pakistan. Indian CEO Prannoy Roy is co-brother of Prakash Karat, General Secretary of the Communist party of India .  His wife and Brinda Karat are sisters.

India Today: Which used  to be the only national weekly which supported BJP is now bought by  NDTV!! Since then the tone has changed drastically and turned into Hindu  bashing.

CNN-IBN: This is 100 percent funded by Southern  Baptist Church with its branches in all over the world with HQ in US..  The Church annually allocates $800 million for promotion of its channel.  Its Indian head is Rajdeep Sardesai and his wife Sagarika Ghosh.

Times group list:

Times Of India, Mid-Day, Nav-Bharat Times, Stardust, Femina, Vijay Times, Vijaya Karnataka, Times Now (24- hour news channel) and many more…
Times Group is owned by Bennet & Coleman. ‘World  Christian Council’ does 80 percent of the Funding, and an Englishman and  an Italian equally share balance 20 percent. The Italian Robertio Mindo  is a close relative of Sonia Gandhi.

Star TV: It is run by an Australian, who is supported by St. Peters Pontifical Church Melbourne.

Hindustan Times: Owned by Birla Group, but hands have changed since  Shobana Bhartiya took over. Presently it is working in Collaboration  with Times Group.

The Hindu: English daily, started over 125  years has been recently taken over by Joshua Society, Berne ,  Switzerland .. N. Ram’s wife is a Swiss national.

Indian Express: Divided into two groups.
The Indian Express and new Indian Express (southern edition) ACTS  Christian Ministries have major stake in the Indian Express and latter  is still with the Indian counterpart.

Eeenadu: Still to date  controlled by an Indian named Ramoji Rao. Ramoji Rao is connected with  film industry and owns a huge studio in Andhra Pradesh.
 Andhra  Jyothi: The Muslim party of Hyderabad known as MIM along with a Congress  Minister has purchased this Telugu daily very recently.

The Statesman: It is controlled by Communist Party of India.

Kairali TV: It is controlled by Communist party of India (Marxist)

Mathrubhoomi: Leaders of Muslim League and Communist leaders have major investment.

Asian Age and Deccan Chronicle: It is owned by a Saudi Arabian Company with its chief Editor M.J. Akbar.

Gujarat riots which took place in 2002 where Hindus were burnt alive,  Rajdeep Sardesai and Bharkha Dutt working for NDTV at that time got  around 5 Million Dollars from Saudi Arabia to cover only Muslim victims,  which they did very faithfully…   Not a single Hindu family was  interviewed or shown on TV whose near and dear ones had been burnt alive  in Godra, it is reported.

Tarun Tejpal of Tehelka gets blank cheques from Arab countries to target BJP and Hindus only, it is said.

The ownership explains the control of media in India by foreigners. The result is obvious.

Latest to join the bandwagon is Kamal Hasan, actor from Tamil Nadu, plunging into politics invoking the divisive Dravidian policies, as if on cue. Will Kamal Hasan address a public meeting in the Chennai Marina and announce it clear to the world whether he is a converted Christian or not. Or if he is funded and fielded by Christian NGOs? Does he or does he not have an offshore bank account in Cayman Islands, the tax haven. Whether he is still a Hindu. Will Kamal Hasan file an affidavit of declaration to this effect in a competent court of law. This is very important if he is to contest next state assembly elections in the state. The electorate in Tamil Nadu must be informed and Kamal Hasan must not deliberately suppress facts which could have the potential to swing votes and decide the future and fate of the state.

Why I will not vote for a Christian or a Muslim: Look at the Kanchipuram videos. And at the silence of the media. The Madhu murder. Lengthening silence on perpetrators of such an inhuman crime. What will happen to us Hindus if we become the minority in the country when the Indian media can connive conveniently and comfortably with anti-national foreign christian conversion missionaries to do this injustice to us right now.

A grand design is afoot to undermine the Hindu majority in general. The picture emerging is scary. Sometime back a friend shared a video in Whatsapp, of a group of youth going about in Malapuram in Kerala, stoning Hindu homes and hailing the desert cult. Am I living in India. Are Hindus still the majority in this country. What is happening to my nation.

The democracy in India depends foremost on the demography of India. India will be a democratic, secular republic only till we are Hindu majority. When Hindu population in this nation drops to below 50%, we will be on our way already to become the next Af-Pak, the No.1 terror nation in the world. Let the Ramachandra Guhas of India who maintain a stoic silence (for a supposed historian and renowned author that he is) on conversions, the Award Wapsi gangs and Indian media ponder on that.

 

 

Posted in Pictures Desi

As She Was: Sri Devi

Sri Devi from my hometown Madras aka Chennai, starred in a Tamil picture for the first time when she was barely 4 years old.  From child artiste, she went on to become leading lady and superstar not only down south but also in Bollywood. Rather than remembering her for ‘Hawa hawaiii’ and ‘Chandni’ , this is what I will remember her always for:  Sri Devi from Tamil films. Can you believe this Sri Devi. Almost no make-up, no glam costumes, none of the farces like nose job… The innocence and dignity of character called Sri Devi. Unlike the diva who banished her true self into oblivion once she set foot in Bollywood. Every single picture of hers was epic. Tamil people mostly do not speak Hindi and know of only her Tamil pictures.  This list is not exhaustive. I have compiled whatever came to my mind.

This is my tribute to the legendary star who passed away last night in Dubai. Untimely death. I doubt whether even her daughters know  the other side of her the way the Tamil audience may.

However i do not underrate her tryst with Bollywood. Daughter of Chennai may be, but bahu of Mumbai. Bombay made her phenomenal, the first all India lady superstar that she was. If not for Bollywood, she would have remained a hidden jewel to the world.

This first number is from her debut picture opposite both Rajni Kanth and Kamal Hasan, directed by thespian director K Balachander. Sri Devi is 13 years in this film.

 

A crime story, Gayathri must have been a heavy subject to handle for 15 year Sri Devi with anti-hero Rajni Kanth but she managed it admirably well.

A cute Jolly Abraham song which was my pre-teen favourite.

 

Also a pre-teen favourite, this is a film where Sri plays village belle.

The landmark and award winning ’16 Vayathinile’ which went on to create 3 superheroes in Indian film industry: Sri Devi, Kamal Hasan and Rajni Kanth. Bharathi Raja became ace film director and Ilaya Raja became south India’s no.1 composer. Village story. Cannot see a classic like this until today, down to earth. A peek into rural Tamil Nad.

This song was a rare mistake of Sri Devi’s in Tamil films but it went on to become a runaway superhit with its catchy tune. I happened to watch the video only in You Tube and was relieved I only listened to this one in radio in my teenage:

Another award winning and thought provoking picture with director K Balachander who was belatedly awarded Dada Saheb Phalke award as if as an afterthought.

Award winning ‘Moondram Pirai’ which was dubbed into ‘Sadma’ in Hindi. My school screened a single film for us every year. That is how I got to watch this picture with my entire school gang in our school’s huge LV Hall, in the second floor. The dozens of lining doors were closed and the hall was darkened before the projector started running. Every time Cheenu (played by Kamal) called ‘Viji’ (Sri Devi character), my friends called me back ‘Viji’ a dozen times! It was also the first time I ever saw a picture with my school friends/friends without adult companionship/supervision. Unforgettable memories about the film. Every girl in my class remembers it even today therefore. Although we did not know then that the Balu Mahendra picture would forever take Sri Devi away from Madras, once it was dubbed into Hindi.

Beautiful melodies from Johny:

 

The cutest one and my all time favourite of Sri Devi. This was also my mother’s favourite (my mother passed away in 1982).

Vaazhve Maayam presented a stylish Sri Devi for the first time to Tamil audience. Sri Devi was changing.

 

 

Crime-Horror film like none other:

 

Priya: Sri Devi in her first foreign shoot in Singapore.

Another favourite of mine:

Posted in History-Culture

The Hindu Gift To World Music: Classical Music Instruments

CARNATIC AND HINDUSTANI

Very few cultures in human race are gifted with rare acumen of producing, creating soulful music. Hindus are one such a gifted and unique species which is why India is home to not just one but two genres of Desi Classical Music: the Hindustani stream of the north and Carnatic classical of the south (apart from native classical dance forms from every other state that merit a separate write-up in their own right).

The aim of this post is to make a brief, if not complete, record of Hindu contribution to world music (by way of music instruments only). So this list is not exhaustive. There is scope for future additions.

India’s native classical instruments comprising the Stringed ones (like Sitar and Veena), Percussion (drums such as Mridangam and Tabla) and Wind (like the Bansuri) command a special place in global music stage, with Sitar and Tabla adapted by a wide range of western music followers. An array of other instruments vastly remain unpopular, although thriving in local scene, with the music tradition dying a slow death in some cases as in rural/folk country.

Hindus revere musical instruments which find a place in ritual worship by way of ‘puja’ (service), the highest respects, tributes, mankind can ever give these finest creations of God who gifted us the basic ‘Sapta Swaras’ (the seven notes of scale) that form the core of all sounds/tunes and beats (raags and taals) in universe. Simply everything is contained in ‘Sapta swaras.’ There is no sound or vibration that is out of scope of ‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Da Ne’ right?

musical instruments along with books and other tools find a venerable place in Hindu worship; this is Saraswathi Puja aka Ayudha Puja celebrated on the 9th day of Navrathri in the south.

We Hindus believe, Veena is the instrument of the very Goddess of learning/knowledge/wisdom Mother Saraswathi. If Saraswathi reigns supreme, Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth/fortunes and Shakthi, the Goddess of power/energy/strength cannot be far behind.

Lord Ganesha is revered as the master of drums.

India thus is this divine home where we view everything – including inanimate objects like music instruments, as life.

Our classical traditional instruments have less and less number of learners, teachers (gurus) and followers these days which is a big concern. This precarious situation endangers the transition of our native and pedigree music passed on over the millennia from our ancestors, to next generation. The music scene in Chennai, the gateway to Indian culture, is vibrant. Chennai is home to Carnatic  attracting thousands of classical music exponents and disciples from around the world during the famous December Music Season (Margazhi). But of late, even here we see vocal music gaining an overwhelming predominance over instrumental music which is kind of sad. Very few youngsters take to Indian instruments these days and interest is waning.

In Hindu culture, music translates to spirituality. Music is essentially a form of ‘bhakthi.’ Bhakthi and Music intertwine in search of the ultimate bliss: Nirvana.  That is why we have Meera Bhajans for instance or even the Thiruppavai-Thiruvembavai (in Tamil Nadu). The ‘Divine Being’ for Hindus revels in soulful music.’ Meera sang to her eternal love Krishna and her renditions are timeless.

Bansuri, the flute, is also the instrument of Lord Krishna, played in India for eons. The western flute version differs slightly from original desi version.  Called ‘Pullankuzhal’ in tamil, the south Indian flute is also a tad different from the northern Indian bansuri. Thus there is not a thing that Hindus did not discover or invent in an ancient civilization that pre-existed the current one.

The amazing north-south sync in the Indian classical music versions north & south of Tropic of Cancer is brilliant: The Sitar of north’s equivalent in the south is Veena. The Mridangam from down under finds a mate in Tabela (tabla) up north. The Nadaswaram (nagaswaram) played in south Indian weddings is substituted with Shehnai or Shenoy without which there is no north Indian wedding.

‘Yaazh’ (as proncounced in ‘Yaazhpaanam’ a Tamil city in Sri Lanka) is a unique ancient Thamizh stringed musical instrument. ‘Jalatharangam’ also specific to India played with bowls of varied sizes with different levels of water, gives a rare musical vibration.

 

Pranaams to Hindustani/Carnatic Classical and Folk Music traditions of Bharath (India)!

Computerized synchronization is killing traditional and native classical instruments of India in such an obscene fashion. Art is dying, artisans are dying because of electronic synthesis of our musical reverberations, even if it can be argued that this is one more step in evolution of music. Is it really possible to produce the ‘ghamaka’ of Veena cent percent with computers? No way! The finest nuances of Veena can be produced only in the instrument.

There are deliberate, steady and systematic designs and manipulations to trivialize, devalue, discredit and even disinherit (us of) and usurp anything and everything Hindu by gene, culture & heritage by some quarters, which is highly alarming. Aryabhatta was indeed the world’s first astronomer. Sushrutha was the world’s first plastic surgeon unquestioningly. Bhaskara did give the world Calculus and Trigonometry and Hindus did invent the Zero concept. Ayurveda to Yoga and Meditation, there is not a field ancient Hindus did not touch or pioneer in. Everything ground to a standstill by 7th century CE. Why. We Hindus never bother about patents either. Vasudeiva Kudumbakam, World is one family for us.

I have a request before I close: Dear Indian parents, PLEASE ENROLL YOUR KIDS FOR CLASSICAL INDIAN MUSIC INSTRUMENT TRAINING rather than aspire for Dance shows in television channels. You will be rendering yeoman service to Bharat Matha, Mother India.

Posted in Food Porn

Say ‘No’ To NonStick CookWare: Cooking In Cast Iron

 

Referring to the ‘Vaarpatta Kadai’ (Tamil) in this post as Cast Iron which is very brittle. Regular Iron Kadai which is ‘Irumbu Kadai’ is Wrought Iron which is not as brittle. Both are good but Vaarpatta kadai or Cast Iron kadai/wok/tawa is better with enhanced taste and less rusting quality as it is heavy and denser and involves slow cooking.

In this post, we deal with only Cast Iron and not Regular/Wrought Iron cookware.

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Not only in Chennai, even in Doha I have moved over to Cast Iron kadais/woks/shallow-to-deep frying pans and Tawas from Teflon-coated Non-stick pans/woks/tawas.  Cast Iron is what my grandma used as I remember from very young years, and my friends in Kerala rebuked me for switching over to the chemical (Teflon) coated cooking pans/woks in last few years.   Could this be a reason for increasing incidences of cancer in India? Because Indian cuisine essentially requires direct cooking over fire to highest temperatures.  We cook for hours this way which may also include pressure cooking.  So in such a scenario, how reliable is even  two or three coats of teflon in the non-stick ware we use in our kitchen? Won’t the teflon melt or smoke?  The manufacturers say ‘no’ but I am a housewife, a full-time cook for my family and challenge me!  Teflon definitely smoulders in a minute of heating, giving out the nastiest chemical/pungent odour, and thinking of that going into our intestines spooks me completely.   Using stainless steel spoons is unavoidable in our cooking – because Indian culinary ways demand so.  Plastic spoons and ladles are not ideal to stir our steaming hotpots.  Usage of steel spoons may also erode the teflon coating in the nonstick pans exposing us to graver health risks.  Teflon nonstick ware now comes with an additional ceramic coating (!) as if enough is not enough. We in India are not the sauce and soup types.  Our cooking blends much of deep frying, shallow frying, wet grinding, dry grinding, roasting, sauteing, seasoning all at nearly 100 degree celsius, a plethora of green vegetables, fresh spices, foodgrains and pulses and meat. What do you think is the best and healthiest choice of kitchenware under the circumstances?

Never discarded cast-iron totally from routine life all these years, was only toying with teflon pans as they come with good finishing and are cook-and-serve line mostly.This is not so possible with cast-iron.  Using the non-stick pan every morning to make omelettes always stayed at the back of my mind and I wanted to put an immediate stop to that – and have almost. Got back to cast-iron so the texture (of cooked food, in this case omelette) is different and better.

Along with cast-iron, I also use regular Iron/Wrought Ironware in my kitchen. This is easily rusty and needs greater maintenance.

CAST IRON WARE – THE TASTE ENHANCER

As for dosas and rotis/chappathis, anyway I was using mostly cast-iron tawas because right from the start, I have had this strongest opinion that the taste changes in non-stick pan and the browning does not happen the way it does with cast-iron. Dosas come out dry in nonstick tawas.

Ofcourse a mild single coat of oil is required for use in cast-ironware from time-to-time which is minimal/negligible.  I use a fresh cut onion instead of tissue paper every time to swipe the cast iron pan/tawa with a tsp of oil which gives it a special aroma especially while making dosas.  (eco-friendly thus, cutting out on tissue use).

 

 

From making daily omelettes in my cute little tiny cast-iron wok to cooking chicken curries and gravies to vegetable stir-frying to bringing stews to a boil and toasting the dosas/chappathis/parathas and even the bakery bread, cast iron it is for us now completely.  Nonstick ware is mostly reserved for use when we have guests as it is quick and easy and user-friendly.  Naturally cast-iron takes time and also a bit of oil – healthy oil.  A minimum of 1-3 tsps of healthy coconut oil/mustard oil/gingely oil/peanut oil is good for our skin in my opinion. Leave out Olive oil which is good only for salads.

Nothing can roast to that adorable golden brown the way Cast Iron can!

WORLD’S MOST ECONOMIC COOKWARE

Cast Iron ware is brittle – in the sense, will break if dropped with purpose. But cast-iron is priced very economically and is available with some old stainless steel utensil sellers in Chennai.  But is limited in edition. A cast iron wok smallest size will not cost over 150-300 bucks and the biggest one, not over 350-850/- bucks depending on the seller.  Whereas one has to shell out 5-10 times these prices for the same size/volume Teflon nonstick ware.

Cast Iron also effectively uses energy even if it cooks slow. The heat spread is even and it is rare for food to get burnt in cast iron. 

I recommend everyone to think of cast-iron in place of teflon coated non-stick ware in order to have a truly healthy kitchen.  I am also using ‘matka’ (clay pots) wherever its possible like when cooking greens/paalak (spinach).  Most in the south do. Thinking of bringing down some copper utensils especially the tumblers from the loft.  I have inherited quite a good collection of brass/copper cookware, my family heirloom from mother’s side.  This includes a 5 box tiffin carrier (lunch box), plates, big pots and pans etc.  Antique, high value today and also healthy choice.  Want to include some of these in everyday cooking from now on.

MAINTENANCE AND USAGE OF CAST IRONWARE

Cast Iron is very heavy for handling.  Needs to be dried completely every time after usage and oiled after scouring clean.  Requires good/adequate space for storing and must not be stacked one over another (to avoid rusting).

When you buy cast iron, it will look mostly very rusty (browning red).  Wash it and scrub it thoroughly a number of times after immersing in water for 1-2 hours. Then wipe dry, coat it in oil and leave for a day.  Again scrub it mildly and wash it and dry it and oil it. Repeat the process for a week for the rust to wear off totally and for the black colour to set in.

Takes time to practice in cast iron.  At first it will be sticky entirely.

For first time use, heat the cast iron kadai/wok/tawa/pan, oil it generously and fry boiled rice to remove the remaining rust off the cast iron.  Repeat the process if necessary.  Cool the pan/tawa, wash it again and dry it. Store it on oiling.

Next, use oil generously and deep-fry papads/potato chips first to get the cast iron kadai into cooking mode once the rust is worn off completely.   Deep fry at least a couple of times. Scrub mild and coat with coat using a small piece of cotton cloth or an onion slice or tissue paper before storing.

Use the cast iron tawas to do chappathis or toast bread first before trying the dosas on.

These are the essential ‘conditioning’ steps to make fit the cast iron ware for our regular kitchen use.

By now, the cast iron kadai/tawa/pan is almost adapted for our regular use.

The final qualifying test is, when you can roast potato/aloo curry comfortably in your cast iron wok/kadai to golden brown without the curry sticking to the sides and coming away comfortably and /or when you make that first thick ‘kal dosa’ nicely without tearing/breaking with the watery rice-urad dal Idli-dosa batter in the cast iron tawa that comes out free with ease.  When your cast iron pan/wok/tawa passes this ultimate test, then both of you are winners and friends for life!!!

For the cast-iron woks/pan/tawas to get completely non-sticky in character except for a minimal use of cooking oil, it will take time.  Atleast a month of regular use for deep-frying and chappathi/roti making is recommended before this non-stick mode sets in.  Once it does, the cast ironware will put all No.1 quality teflon coated branded nonstick ware to shame.  Best Indian kitchenware in my opinion.  Traditionally followed for millenniums.  Why we Indians don’t bother with patenting beats me.

Cast Ironware must not be scrubbed everyday. If you have to, do it mildly.  Otherwise, a mere slapping and rinsing well with running water must be enough – once the cast ironware cools off to room temperature the natural way.  Never attempt cleaning/scrubbing it when it is hot/warm.  This will turn the cast iron to sticky mode once again so that the tedious re-conditioning has to be done with no option.  Always rub in a tsp of oil after use to keep off rust on both sides. Keep over newspaper sheets or other papers on storage shelves/cupboards.

HEALTH BENEFITS

Needless to be told, Cast Iron is an indirect source of iron.  Ancient Indians have included different metals in their eating habits chiefly for their health benefits: Copper for drinking water from, for instance. We source it the way we source vitamin D from direct sunlight.  Nowadays iodine is added to our cooking salt. Iron is likewise best consumed indirectly through our kitchenware for whatever shortfall we may find in our food intake.  Cast Iron is not a chemical like ‘teflon’ in nonstick ware.   We do not know the exact health risks from long term use of nonstick ware but any chemical that goes into our intestines can only harm and not help.  Cast Iron is a healthy choice that way. Prolonged use of Aluminium ware is reported to be responsible for Alzheimer’s.

Wrought Iron (regular iron) kadais/woks/tawas are also easily available in all parts of India along with Cast Iron ware.

Posted in Pictures Desi

Review: Poorna (Hindi) and Talvar (Hindi)

 

Watched back to back two good Bollywood pictures in the 14 hour long flight from America. It is sad that good Hindi films never make it to the headlines and it is the scum (of Khans) that hogs the limelight. Both films seem to be the diagonally opposite: one was of the rural girl Poorna Malavath who made it big from small and miserable village life despite all odds; the other is the sad tale of the upper-middle class girl Aarushi Talwar whose young life was brutally snuffed out one unfortunate evening in Noida, suburban Delhi under mysterious circumstances. Rare for one to get to watch two contrasting stories like these one after another like I happened to, which made it possible for me to make a mental comparison between the two teenagers with hardly a couple of years’ age difference between them in actual life when they were catapulted into national news.  There was nothing common between them even if they’re both from India. Looks like they’re from two entirely different worlds. Each world had its own blessings and woes.

First one was, Poorna (Hindi) produced by Rahul Bose based on the real life story of Poorna Malavath from Nizamabad, Telengana who at the tender age of 13 years and 11 months became the youngest woman in the world to summit Mount Everest in the year 2014. Aditi Inamdar playing the lead as the naive village girl Poorna from Pakala, with Rahul Bose taking on the major supporting role as the Social Welfare Department official, the film is an inspiration in and out and is refreshingly original. Coming close on the heels of Aamir Khan’s Dangal (which probably was inspired by ‘Sala Khadoos”), the celluloid making of Poorna probably risked being labelled a stereotype, but the director-producer seems to have outguessed this, moving away the story line therefore from the predictable and beaten track to chart a different course altogether. Bureaucratic issues and red tape are part and parcel of Indian sports (like it is with any other arena). Untangling yourself from the muddle and raising your standard by itself is a feat, given the complexities that characterize Indian sport. Still, small town achievers have been outshining their urban counterparts in recent years led by none other than the ex skipper of Indian cricket Mahendra Singh Dhoni who hailed from Jharkhand himself.

But rural India is mired with its own socio-economic problems. Reeling under poverty and mounting debts, options are limited for the illiterate peasants who cannot afford a decent square meal a day for their families most of the times. Women of rural India are the hardest hit. Poorna’s cousin and friend Priya has child marriage and the same fate awaits Poorna herself (who is in middle school) that she escapes with determination and half-hearted consent from her dirt poor parents, but largely with the help of a very considerate social welfare officer Praveen Kumar (played by Rahul Bose) who is bent on reforming the education scene in the state. Together with Anand Kumar, another teenager, Poorna overcomes the initial hurdles and bests her own physical limitations to conquer the Everest and set a new world record. What happens however to Priya, the teenage mother who carries twins beyond her physical means is tragic. Post delivery, the minor girl develops jaundice to which she succumbs. A bright young life is wasted. A sad reflection on the state of affairs of rural India, 70 years after our independence from the British. Reality can be harsh in Indian villages where everyday life is a struggle. This an other real life story from ‘Poorna’ is an offshoot that aches your heart.

Poorna Malavath is a beacon of hope to rural girls in India who may think all doors are closed on them. She shows how you can succeed yet in adverse conditions if you are strong willed. May be all is not well with India but India is still a place you can flourish if you know how to tap resources effectively. All you may need is a little push and a bit of external help to knock on the right doors or pull the correct levers that may make things work for you. The civil services administration of India need to work in tandem with rural districts to tap the immense potential that this country has to offer.  Devoted and diligent civil services officers who can rekindle the dying hope may be the answers to our prayers, like  civil servant Praveen Kumar has shown with the success of Poorna Malavath.

Aarushi Talwar’s murder shook the Indian nation in 2008. I followed up the story like the rest of my compatriots because, if Aarushi could be alive today, she would be about my son’s age. Her parents Rajesh Talwar and Nupur Talwar were dentists and had a lucrative practice in Noida.

Both Poorna and Aarushi became recognizable names in India around the same age, for different reasons though.

Looks like Aarushi had everything going for her, given her background, unlike Poorna famished and impoverished hailing from one of India’s most backward districts. Aarushi attended the best school, had affluent parents, moved in a good social circle and was a popular and vibrant teenager unlike the shy Poorna. How could things have gone so wrong for her.

Media picked up Aarushi’s case and went for a toss for all the loopholes it presented. Over years, many theories were invented. On one hand, as a parent my heart went out to the Talwars who were demonized by the media. On the other hand, some found Nupur (Nutan played by Konkana Sen), the mother, very impassive to the camera as did seem her husband Rajesh. The grief was missing even if the distraught parents need not have to prove their love and affection for their only child to the world at large. So many pieces did not fit in the jigsaw puzzle as some questions raised about the Nepali men who were friends of the servant Hemraj remained unanswered. Why did the doctor couple have to have a male servant in their house when they had a single teenage daughter, however elderly the man could be. This was what I asked myself.

A friend who happened to read the book on Talwars was already a big champion for their cause. She argued, no parent could murder his/her own child however wayward the daughter/son might turn out to be. I couldn’t disagree with her.  In fact, the picture is based on the book. The best and logical step would be to disown the child. The Talwars did look rather composed given the nature of the tragedy that had befallen on their beloved angelic daughter. Still, honour killing is not for urban India. Probably the parents’ composure went with their profession and their elite social status. But their cool attitude also could have worked against them and turned the public conscience unfavourable. News hour debates were about the Talwars for weeks. The couple were indicted in the case a few years after the murder.

Finally in 2017, the parents of Aarushi, Rajesh and Nupur have been acquitted by the courts for lack of evidence. The picture ‘Talvar’ (sword) is a convenient pun where the Aarushi character goes by the name Shruti. Shruti Tandon. Daughter of Nutan and Ramesh Tandon. Talvar or sword, says the character of the outgoing CBI officer in the film, is held on the left hand of the blindfolded Lady Justice representing the Police department even as the right hand holds the scale of balance.  The investigation of a civil or criminal case therefore is as important in dispensation of justice as the neutrality of the legal counsels be it the prosecution or defense. In fact the tool of investigation (the cops) is vital and imperative to dispense accurate and impartial justice based on which even the legal counsels may build on their cases (in defense or against). So when the investigation is not thorough, it may lead to injustice or partial justice as the film Talvar powerfully and sequentially portrays.

Directed by Meghna Gulzar, the film is the real life story of Aarushi. Yes, it cannot be real life story of Aarushi because the story begins with her murder. The investigation takes its course in various angles played by Ashwin Kumar, a special officer on the case, played by Irfan Khan. Good research (by the scripted character) shows how sloppy the police department in India can be and how laggard we are when it comes to scientific theories and proofs. How carelessly the evidences are destroyed and how callous the public servants (cops in this case) could be that put the tragic parents even more into trauma. It doesn’t stop for the Talwars (Tandons) with finding their precious daughter bloody murdered. Not allowed to mourn their loss, they are dragged into relentless and cruel controversies by the media for TRP ratings and painted as vicious enough to kill their own daughter in cold blood.

The Aarushi case reminds one of the many John Grisham novels that dwell upon wrongful implications and unjust verdicts based on circumstantial evidences where the guilty go free and the guiltless get framed.

Hats off to the director for the convincing and scene-by-scene construction of the plot with strong and substantiated narratives. Grave slip by the cops. All it takes is common sense to see the truth. How easy it is to jump to conclusions carried away by jingoism and populism. The Talwars were accused only for the lack of evidence and any other angle. Honour Killing sounded sensational. The girl was not violated at least, thank god, but that heightened the mystery. The prime suspect Hemraj (Hempal in the picture) was also found murdered which complicated matters. Too many links were missing. The media never zeroed in on the other suspects in the case with the same gusto that they unleashed when it came to villainization of the Talwars.

All the time the character assassination of Aarushi as well as her parents was actively propagated by media cashing in on the sad episode. The nightmare the parents must have gone through. What right do the media have to pass judgement on a criminal case that was still in courts. How much prejudiced that may make out of the prosecutors, legal counsels and witnesses in the case. The harm done to Aarushi’s case by the media is awful. It preempted investigation into many potential and crucial leads that could have led to the murderer(s).

The film ‘Talvar’ was released in 2015 whereas the Talwars were cleared with acquittal only in 2017. The picture closed with the Talwars (Tandons) convicted. I hope the Talwars finally find peace. And I do hope the real killers of Aarushi are brought to justice (though of this I suppose there is least chance. Krishna (Kanhaiya in the film) must have fled India long ago).  Carelessness on part of responsible public servants can lead to gross miscarriage of justice. After what happened to their dear daughter Aarushi, it is a miracle that the Talwars are even sane. It is time to leave them alone finally to mourn their irreparable loss.  Still, thanks to the media, a section of Indians will continue to hold the Talwars guilty of murdering their daughter Aarushi. The damage the media does.

The pictures could be classic case studies on Indian girls/women from village and city since the turn of the century. The films offer a rare insight into rural India and urban India alternatively in different dimensions. One can’t help comparing even the poor peasant parents with the elites at the same time. One world is steeped in ignorance. Another brims with over-confidence. The unmistakable bold streak in the peasant woman contrasts quietly with masked naivety of the urban woman. After a long time, I had the satisfaction of watching meaningful Bollywood films that are brushed under the carpet by the big banner productions. It is sad, these good stories told are hardly commercially viable.

Posted in Socio-Political-Economic

The Good, Bad And Ugly Of Indian Polity

 

“Budhiyulla Manidhar Ellam Vetri Kaanbadhillai;

Vetri Petra Manidhar Ellam Buddhisaali Illai”

 

As India ushers in Her 70th year of Independence tomorrow, here is a winding post from my end where I have done away with links and have instead copied and pasted texts from various sources, which shall take one through a journey of pre-independent India as well as Her recent past. The good, bad and ugly could be personalities or situations. It is upto us to infer who is who, what is what. Added comments here and there. Purely private. Three entries as of now, but the list shall grow.

Updated: August 14, 2017. Watch this space.

 

1. Mahatma Gandhi, Father Of The Nation 

Not my Hero.

 

2. Nathuram Godse, the Gandhi-assassin:

Nathuram Godse – His Last Speech

“May it please Your Honour”

Nathuram Godse

On 8 November 1948, Nathuram Godse (19 May 1910-15 November 1949) rose to make his statement in court. Reading quietly from a typed manuscript, he sought to explain why he had killed Gandhi. His thesis covered ninety-pages, and he was on his feet for five hours. Godse’s statement, excerpted below, should be read by citizens and scholars in its entirely, for it provides an insight into his personality and his understanding of the concept of Indian nationhood.

“Born in a devotional Brahmin family, I instinctively came to revere Hindu religion, Hindu history and Hindu culture. I had, therefore, been intensely proud of Hinduism as a whole. As I grew up I developed a tendency to free thinking unfettered by any superstitious allegiance to any isms, political or religious. That is why I worked actively for the eradication of untouchability and the caste system based on birth alone. I openly joined anti-caste movements and maintained that all Hindus are of equal status as to rights, social and religious, and should be considered high or low on merit alone and not through the accident of birth in a particular caste or profession.

I used publicly to take part in organized anti-caste dinners which thousands of Hindus, Brahmins, Vaishyas, Kshatriyas, Chamars and B—–s participated. We broke the caste rules and dined in the company of each other. I have read the speeches and writings of Dadabhai Naoroji, Vivekanand, Gokhale, Tilak, along with the books of ancient and modern history of India and some prominent countries like England, France, America and Russia. Moreover I studied the tenets of socialism and Marxism. But above all I studied very closely what Veer (brave) Savarkar and Gandhiji had written and spoken, as to my mind these two ideologies have contributed more to the moulding of the thought and action of the Indian people during the last thirty years or so, than any other factor has done.

All this thinking and reading led me to believe that it was my first duty to serve Hindudom and Hindus both as a patriot and as a world citizen. To secure the freedom and to safeguard the just interests of some thirty crores (three hundred million) of Hindus would automatically constitute the freedom and well-being of all India, one fifth of the human race. This conviction led me naturally to devote myself to the Hindu Sanatanist ideology and programme, which alone, I came to believe, could win and preserve the National Independence of Hindustan, my Motherland, and enable her to render true service to humanity as well. Since the year 1920, that is, after the demise of Lokmanya Tilak, Gandhi’s influence in the Congress first increased and then became supreme.

His activities for public awakening were phenomenal in their intensity and were reinforced by the slogan of truth and non-violence, which he paraded ostentatiously before the country. No sensible or enlightened person could object to these slogans. In fact there is nothing new or original in them. They are implicit in every constitutional public movement. But it is nothing but a dream if you imagine the bulk of mankind is, or can ever become, capable of scrupulous adherence to these lofty principles in its normal life from day to day. In fact, honour, duty and love of one’s own kith and kin and country might often compel us to disregard non-violence and to use force. I could never conceive that an armed resistance to an aggression is unjust.

I would consider it a religious and moral duty to resist and if possible, to overpower such an enemy by use of force. (In the Ramayana) Rama killed Ravana in a tumultuous fight and relieved Sita. (In the Mahabharata) Krishna killed Kansa to end his wickedness; and Arjuna had to fight and slay quite a number of his friends and relations, including the revered Bhishma, because the latter was on the side of the aggressor. It is my firm belief that in dubbing Rama, Krishna and Arjuna as guilty of violence, the Mahatma betrayed the total ignorance of the springs of human action. In more recent history, it was the heroic fight put up by Chhatrapati Shivaji that first checked and eventually destroyed the Muslim tyranny in India. It was absolutely essential for Shivaji to overpower and kill an aggressive Afzal Khan, failing which he would have lost his own life. In condemning history’s towering warriors like Shivaji, Rana Pratap and Guru Govind Singh as misguided patriots, Gandhi has merely exposed his self-conceit.

He was, paradoxical, as it may appear, a violent pacifist who brought untold calamities on the country in the name of truth and non-violence, while Rana Pratap, Shivaji and the Guru will remain enshrined in the hearts of their countrymen forever for the freedom they brought to them. The accumulating provocation of thirty-two years, culminating in his last pro-Muslim fast, at last goaded me to the conclusion that the existence of Gandhi should be brought to an end immediately. Gandhi had done very good work in South Africa to uphold the rights and well being of the Indian community there.

But when he finally returned to India, he developed a subjective mentality under which he alone was to be the final judge of what was right or wrong. If the country wanted his leadership, it had to accept his infallibility; if it did not, he would stand aloof from the Congress and carry on in his own way. Against such an attitude there can be no halfway house. Either Congress had to surrender its will to his and had to be content with playing second fiddle to all his eccentricity, whimsicality, metaphysics and primitive vision, or it had to carry on without him. He alone was the judge of everyone and everything; he was the master brain guiding the Civil Disobedience movement; no other could know the technique of that movement. He alone knew when to begin it and when to withdraw it. The movement might succeed or fail, but that could make no difference to the Mahatma’s infallibility. ‘A Satyagrahi can never fail’ was his formula for his own infallibility and nobody except himself knew what a Satyagrahi is.

Thus the Mahatma became the judge and the jury in his own case. These childish insanities and obstinacies, coupled with a most severe austerity of life, ceaseless work and lofty character made Gandhi formidable and irresistible. Many people thought that his policies were irrational, but they had either to withdraw from the Congress or place their intelligence at his feet to do with as he liked. In a position of such absolute irresponsibility, Gandhi was guilty of blunder after blunder, failure after failure, and disaster after disaster. Gandhi’s pro-Muslim policy is blatantly illustrated in his perverse attitude on the question of the national language of India. It is quite obvious that Hindi has the most prior claim to be accepted as the premier language.

In the beginning of his career in India, Gandhi gave a great impetus to Hindi, but as he found that the Muslims did not like it, he became a champion of what is called Hindustani. Everybody in India knows that there is no language in India called Hindustani; it has no grammar; it has no vocabulary. It is a mere dialect; it is spoken, not written. It is a tongue and a crossbreed between Hindi and Urdu, and not even the Mahatma’s sophistry could make it popular. But in his desire to please the Muslims he insisted that Hindustani alone should be the national language of India. His blind followers, of course, supported him and the so-called hybrid language began to be used. The charm and the purity of the Hindi language were to be prostituted to please the Muslims. All his experiments were at the expense of the Hindus.

From August 1946 onwards, the private armies of the Muslim League began a massacre of Hindus. The then Viceroy, Lord Wavell, though distressed at what was happening, would not use his powers under the Government of India Act of 1935 to prevent the rape, murder and arson. The Hindu blood began to flow from Bengal to Karachi with little retaliation by the Hindus. The Interim Government formed in September was sabotaged by its Muslim League members right from its inception, but the more they became disloyal and treasonable to the government of which they were a part, the greater was Gandhi’s infatuation for them.

Lord Wavell had to resign as he could not bring about a settlement and was succeeded by Lord Mountbatten. King Stork followed King Log. The Congress, which had boasted of its nationalism and secularism, secretly accepted Pakistan literally at the point of the bayonet and abjectly surrendered to Jinnah. India was vivisected and one-third of the Indian Territory became foreign land to us from 15 August 1947. Lord Mountbatten came to be described in the Congress circles as the greatest Viceroy and Governor-General this country ever had.

The official date for the handing over of power was fixed for June 30, 1948, but Mountbatten with his ruthless surgery gave us a gift of vivisected India ten months in advance. This is what Gandhi had achieved after thirty years of undisputed dictatorship and this is what the Congress party calls ‘freedom’ and ‘peaceful transfer of power’. The Hindu-Muslim unity bubble was finally burst and a theocratic state was established with the consent of Nehru and his crowd and they have called it ‘freedom won by them with sacrifice’ – whose sacrifice? When top leaders of Congress, with the consent of Gandhi, divided and tore the country – which we considered a deity of worship – my mind was filled with direful anger.

One of the conditions imposed by Gandhi for his breaking of the fast related to the mosques in Delhi occupied by the Hindu refugees. But when Hindus in Pakistan were subjected to violent attacks he did not so much as utter a single word to protest and censure the Pakistan Government or the Muslims concerned. Gandhi was shrewd enough to know that while undertaking a fast unto death, had he imposed some conditions on the Muslims in Pakistan, here would have been found hardly any Muslims who could have shown some grief if the fast had ended in his death. It was for this reason that he purposely avoided imposing any conditions on the Muslims.

He was fully aware from past experience that Jinnah was not at all perturbed or influenced by his fast and the Muslim League hardly attached any value to the inner voice of Gandhi. Gandhi is being referred to as the Father of the Nation. But if that is so, he has failed in his paternal duty in as much he has acted very treacherously to the nation by his consenting to the partitioning of it. I stoutly maintain that Gandhi has failed in his duty. He has proved to be the Father of Pakistan. His inner-voice, his spiritual power, his doctrine of non-violence of which so much is made of, all crumbled against Jinnah’s iron will and proved to be powerless.

Briefly speaking, I thought to myself and foresaw that I shall be totally ruined, and the only thing I could expect from the people would be nothing but hatred and that I shall have lost all my honour, even more valuable than my life, if I were to kill Gandhiji. But at the same time I thought that the Indian politics in the absence of Gandhiji would surely be practical, able to retaliate and would be powerful with the armed forces. No doubt, my own future would be totally ruined, but the nation would be saved from the inroads of Pakistan. People may even call me or dub me as devoid of any sense or foolish, but the nation would be free to follow the course founded on the reason, which I consider necessary for sound nation-building.

After having fully considered the question, I took the final decision in the matter, but I did not speak about it to anyone whatsoever. I took courage in both my hands and I did fire the shots at Gandhiji on 30th January 1948, on the prayer-grounds in Birla House. I do say that my shots were fired at the person whose policy and action had brought rack and ruin and destruction to millions of Hindus. There was no legal machinery by which such an offender could be brought to book and for this reason I fired those fatal shots. I bear no ill will towards anyone individually, but I do say that I had no respect for the present government owing to their policy, which was unfairly favourable towards the Muslims. But at the same time I could clearly see that the policy was entirely due to the presence of Gandhi.

I have to say with great regret that Prime Minister Nehru quite forgets that his preaching and deeds are at times at variance with each other when he talks about India as a secular state in season and out of season, because it is significant to note that Nehru has played a leading role in the theocratic state of Pakistan, and his job was made easier by Gandhi’s persistent policy of appeasement towards the Muslims. I now stand before the court to accept the full share of my responsibility for what I have done and the judge would, of course, pass against me such orders of sentence as may be considered proper. But I would like to add that I do not desire any mercy to be shown to me, nor do I wish that anyone should beg for mercy on my behalf.

My confidence about the moral side of my action has not been shaken even by the criticism levelled against it on all sides. I have no doubt that honest writers of history will weigh my act and find the true value thereof someday in future.”

Nathuram Godse was hanged a year later, on 15 November 1949; as per his last wishes, his family and followers have preserved his ashes for immersion in the Indus River of a re-united India.

Well, my take is, Nathuram Godse wouldn’t want his ash to be immersed in Sindhu river today and may heave a sigh of relief. He will know, whatever happened in 1947 turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

 

3. ‘SHE’ WRITTEN BY M O MATHAI, PRIVATE SECRETARY TO JAWAHARLAL NEHRU

This article has a short but important history. It was written on June 23, 1977 by no less a person than M.O. Mathai. He was then Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s private secretary. Mathai was an intelligent and competent man from south India, a Catholic by religion, courageous enough to have written two well-known books on his experiences with Nehru and on his times, which became controversial: (1) Reminiscences of the Nehru Age, and, (2) My Days with Nehru. He also wrote the book SHE excerpted below.

SHE

She has Cleopatra’s nose, Pauline Bonaparte’s eyes and the breasts of Venus. She has hair on her limbs which have to be shaven frequently. Physically and mentally she is more of a male than a female. I would call her a manly woman.I met her first in her ancestral home in the winter of 1945. She then had a baby son of crawling age and who was a cry baby. My first reaction was that she was a conceited girl with unhappiness written all over her face. Her second son, born in December, 1946, was an unwanted child. As a baby he had to be circumcised to remove a defect. By 1947 her cup of unhappiness was full and fortune took possession of her face.In the autumn of 1946 her father gave her a small Austin car. She wanted me to teach her driving. In the initial stages I used to take her to the Viceroy’s bodyguard’s Polo Ground for lessons. She was quick in learning. Then I stopped the driving lessons because she was getting into the advanced stage of pregnancy. I told her I didn’t want her to take any risk going into the open roads learning driving. Her second son was born in the middle of December 1946. By the middle of February 1947 she was ready to resume driving lessons. We went into the roads and to Connaught Circus. Then I told her “you just imagine that you know everything, concentrate, consider the person driving a car from the opposite direction is a fool, and go along with confidence driving the car, take a round of Connaught Circus and come back”. She did that and returned in triumph. The driving lessons ended there.Before the middle of 1947 she asked me to take her out to a cinema. From then on we used to go out for pictures as often as I was free – which was not frequent.

She looked forward to taking me out driving over the Ridge with the jungle on either side. She hated small cars. So we used to go in my car which was a Plymouth. She liked to go into the wilds where there were ruins. Drives to regions beyond Qutab Minar were favored. One day, during an aimless drive, she told me complainingly “You do not love me”. I said “I do not know; I had not thought about it”. By the autumn of 1947 I knew she had fallen headlong in love with me without my taking any initiative in the matter. Her face would light up on seeing me. She started talking to me about herself. She said that some time after her marriage, she discovered that her husband was not faithful to her. This came to her as a great shock because she married him in the teeth of opposition from every member of the family. She said she began to lose her saris, coats, blouses, shoes and handbags. She suspected the servants until she discovered some of her lost things on the persons of two women at a party. These women were known to be friendly with her husband. She also found out to which women her husband had given the books stolen from her book-shelves.She made it known rather discreetly what her intentions were about me. I told her I had two inhibitions: (1) I did not like to fool around with married women; (2) my loyalty to her father prohibited anything such as she had in mind. She was immediately forthcoming about No.1. She assured me that some time ago she had stopped having anything to do with her husband. She added: “I can no longer bear the thought of his touching me”. She further confided in me “fortunately he has also gone impotent though he retained his attraction to women”. About No. 2 she was angry with me and asked “What has my father got to do with it? Am I a minor?” 

Since then she spent as much time with me as possible and ridiculed me for my attitude to her father in so far as she was concerned. But I continued to resist gently. I was not mentally prepared or reconciled as yet.On the 18th November 1947 she took me to her room and kissed me full on the lips and told me “I want to sleep with you; take me to the wilds tomorrow evening”. I told her that I had very little experience with women. She said “all the better”. So on the 19th, which was her birthday, we went driving out and chose a place in the wilderness. On our way back I told her that I had some revulsion about milk in her breasts (though she had stopped breast-feeding the child a while ago). Afterward, she did something about it and soon went completely dry. She discovered that I knew little about sex, and gave me two books, one of them by Dr. Abraham Stone about sex and female anatomy. I read them with profit.She was not promiscuous; neither did she need sex too frequently. But in the sex act she had all the artfulness of French women and Kerala Nair women combined. She loved prolonged kissing and being kissed in the same fashion. She had established a reputation of being cold and forbidding. She was nothing of the kind. It was only a pose as a feminine measure of self-protection. She was a passionate woman who was exceptionally good as a wriggler in bed. During the twelve years we were lovers, I was never satisfied with her.Progressively she became hostile to the fat female family friend who used to come to stay. Ever since she saw the family friend welcoming me on arrival with a hug and an innocent kiss on my cheek, she became jealous and livid with rage against the family friend. Occasionally the family friend used to ask me to take her and my “she” to a good cinema whenever there was one in town. My “she” could cleverly see to it that I did not sit near the family friend but only next to her as third in the row.

The day before the next time the family friend was expected to arrive “she” asked me to take her out into the wilds after sundown. In the car I asked her ‘what is the big idea? I have some urgent work to do’. She replied ‘as long as the fat one is here, I will keep away from you because I do not want you to touch me after she has touched you.’ I assured her that I had absolutely no interest in the fat one. Eventually, ‘she’ got used to the fat one’s friendly welcome and departure gestures to me.She tried hard to persuade me to occasionally go up to her room while her husband was there, sit down and talk to them both. I told her that I had no intention of practicing deception. So she used to bring him to my study occasionally.She used all kinds of devices to ensure that her children spent as little time with their father as possible. She told me that she did not want any influence of their father on them because she was convinced that his influence would be bad for them. She concluded by saying: “I do not want my children to grow up as champion liars.” This was one of the reasons why her husband was shifted to a separate room.Once I mentioned to her something which her husband had told me. She said: “Don’t believe a word of what he says. I have learnt it to my bitter cost”. 

She wrote to A.C.N. Nambiar, whom she had known personally for a long time and who was also a friend of her father and mother, asking for his opinion about divorcing her husband. She knew that Nambiar was a dear friend of mine. Nambiar replied to her to say that under certain circumstances it was preferable to have a clear break to living in make-believe. I did not encourage her in this matter, mostly for the sake of her father.One day, she told me that she could not bear the thought of being married to a Hindu. I told her “It is a compliment to the galaxy of great men Hinduism has produced through the ages”.I never encouraged her to come to my bedroom. On one occasion she came. It was past midnight. I was fast asleep, having worked till midnight; she lay down beside me and gently woke me up by a kiss. I asked her “What is the matter?” She said: “I had to come”. I did not know if she had been troubled in mind. I told her: “Let us lie here quietly and do nothing unless you want to”. She said: “On this occasion, I only want to be with you”. She lay there relaxed till about 4 in the morning, and gently tip-toed to her room upstairs. Before going away she told me: “I never told you that once I thought of committing suicide. Such thoughts do not come to me any more. You have given me back my happiness.”

Once, early in our life of love, she told me, “I never knew what real sex was until I had you”. At the height of her passion in bed, she would hold me tight and say “Oh, Bhupat, I love you”. She loved to give and receive nick-names. She gave me the name of Bhupat the dacoit, and I promptly gave her the name of Putli, the dacoitess. In private we used to call each other by these names. About her protestations of love in her romantic excitement, I quoted to her once two passages from Byron’s Don Juan:”Man’s love is a man’s life, a thing apart,It is a woman’s whole existence.In her first passion woman loves her lover;In all others all she loves is love”.She replied, “all right, I want you to tell me as often as possible, not in bed, that you love me”. I tried my best to oblige her. In fact, there was no difficulty, for I had fallen deeply in love with her.One evening, I found her disturbed. When she saw me, she burst into tears. I asked her what had happened. She said that when she came from her dressing room to drink her usual glass of milk, she discovered that there was finely powdered glass in it. The powder was floating on the thick cream. At the first sip she immediately sensed it in her mouth and spat it out. She said that from her dressing room she heard her husband sneaking into her bedroom and making an exit. She controlled herself, put her arms round me and holding me tight, said: “Oh, Mackie, I love you; I am so glad you came up.”

In the Constellation plans on our first visit abroad together, she was all excitement when we were in sight of Mont Blanc. She said softly to me, “I like the Queen Bee, I would like to make love high up in the air”. I asked her:”Didn’t you ever dream of soaring higher up like an eagle and surveying the world? I woke up from such a dream once and found myself on the floor, for I had fallen from the bed without breaking any bones”. She knew I was pulling her leg. On reaching London, she found out the first free meal-time for her, and arranged for me to take her to a quiet restaurant. On reaching the restaurant, I asked her to order the food; I said I would have the same as hers with the addition of six large raw oysters on ice with appropriate sauce to begin with. She said she too would have it. The main dish she ordered was veal. She said “Ever since I arrived here, I have been dying to eat veal”. I asked her if ever she had read Vatsayana’s Kama Sutra. She said, “No, why?” I told her Vatsayana had prescribed veal for young couple for six months before marriage. She had not even read the Ramayana or the Mahabaharata. Her knowledge of the Ramayana was only what her grandmother had told her. In many ways, she was a denationalized person.

She did not like artificial birth-control aids. Once in the early fifties she got pregnant by me. She decided to have an abortion done. She went to the British High Commission doctor whom she knew personally; but he refused to help. So she went to her ancestral home and got in touch with a lady doctor whom she knew personally and in whom she had perfect confidence. On this trip she took her second son with her. After a fortnight the mother and the little son returned with the good news that the boy was cured of his defect in speech in the natural process. Earlier he could not pronounce “R”, and the mother was worried about it; she was in frantic search for a speech-correction expert. On the day of her return, she told me that the whole thing came out without any medication or aid.Was the father aware of her attachment to me? The answer is in the affirmative. Every time he had to go out for dinner, he knew where to find her. Fifteen minutes before the time of departure, she would come fully decked up and sit in front of me in my study. At the stroke of the appointed time the father would pass my study and call her out.

In the winter of 1958 I happened to see something by sheer chance. Immediately after lunch, I went to convey some urgent information to her. She had already closed the door. I knocked; after about five minutes she half-opened the door and peeped out. I discovered that the curtains were drawn and a tall, youngish handsome, bearded man – a Brahmacahri – was in the room. I came away saying “I had something to tell you; but I shall say it later”. That was the end of our relationship. She tried to make me believe several times that the scene I witnessed meant nothing more than some “yoga” and “spiritual” lessons. I gave her the definite impression that I was not interested in her explanations. Gradually she grew bitter against me. In fact, ultimately she became my deadly enemy – which constantly reminded me of the famous couplet of William Congrave:”Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned; nor hell a fury like a woman scorned.”Within a fortnight of the incident I collected all her passionate letters and returned them to her. A year later I came across some more in my old papers. They were also returned to her.There is an erroneous belief among some that she and her husband came together during the last two years of the husband’s life. Enough had happened in their lives that a reunion of hearts was not humanly possible. It is true that she was kind and considerate to him during his illness. Certain things were done during this period and more specially at the cremation and collection of the ashes of the husband and well advertised to give certain desired impressions. They were all for public consumption, for, by that time, she had emerged as a full-fledged political animal.

Well….. no prizes for guessing WHO she was!