Can India trust Modi’s ‘anguished’ words in his blog about Gujarat Riots?

Published: January 9, 2014
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Is Modi's 'anguished' blog an apology or is it simply a strategic move to position him as a moderate leader just a few months before the general elections? PHOTO: AFP

In the 1920s, Gandhi withdrew the first non-cooperation movement against the British Raj when the protesters turned violent and killed some policemen in Chauri Chaura, Uttar Pradesh. In spite of strong resistance from fellow freedom fighters, Gandhi cancelled the first serious large scale agitation against the imperial power because it went against his philosophy of non-violence.

Moreover, Gandhi is renowned for observing several fasts during his long public life in order to maintain religious harmony in the country.

Bear in mind, it was much before the arrival of Mahatma – as Gandhi was popularly called – in the political arena, that King Ashoka of the Mauryan dynasty turned to Buddhism in remorse for killing thousands in pursuit of a conquest of a neighbouring kingdom.

King Ashoka was a legendary ruler whose rule extended over the entire Indian subcontinent from the capital of Pataliputra, that is, modern-day Patna. This incident occurred more than 2,000 years ago when the violence shook him so much that he almost gave up his power and became a propagator of world peace and communal harmony.

Penance and compassion, it seems, have been an integral part of the Indian subcontinent’s history. Anyone who intends to rule India cannot last without this cultural asset and redeeming quality.

It is for this reason that the scrutiny of Narendra Modi – the prime ministerial candidate of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) – has to be more intense than any other mortal. One feels the need to assess not only his political credentials but also the contributions that he has made in enriching the pluralistic traditions of the country.

Can a man who, as the chief minister of Gujarat, presided over the killing of more than 1,000 people and remained immune to the sufferings of the Muslim minority in his state, be allowed to become the premier of a multi-ethnic, multi-religious nation?

Modi cannot and should not, escape this question.

Recently, he offered an explanation for the happenings in 2002 and how hurt and anguished he felt after the incident. He even wrote a blog about his 12 years of silent suffering for the communal violence that killed hundreds of Muslims at the hands of Hindu fundamentalists.

This was his first public explanation of an incident that has been described by different analysts as genocide, pogrom, massacre and even ‘ethnic cleansing’.

No other communal riots in post-independence India have attracted so many terrifying adjectives.

As expected, the timing and nature of Modi’s ‘anguish’ laden blog has raised questions.

Is it an apology or is it simply a strategic move to position Modi as a moderate leader just a few months before the general elections?

I am fairly confident that not only his critics but even his hardcore supporters would vouch that whatever the Hindu right-wing leader wrote in his blog was nothing but a strategic move to sugar coat his image before the impending elections.

It seems obvious to the people that by offering this belated explanation for the 2002 religious riots, the BJP leader is trying to reshape the debate about him. Modi wants the Indian public to think that the man who aspires to be the leader of the country has a kind heart.

Unfortunately, Modi’s laboured explanation is too little, too late and does not offer any hope for reconciliation and justice to the victims.

What is even more interesting is the timing chosen by Modi to stage his emotional outpourings. His explanation came only a day after the verdict of a local court in Gujarat which exonerated him from any wrongdoing in the killing of more than 70 Muslims inside a housing society in Ahmedabad. The petitioner was a 74-year-old woman who was seeking justice for the brutal killing of her husband who had been a former parliamentarian.

It seems that the chief minister of Gujarat considers this acquittal from a lower court to be a big victory before his march to the throne of Delhi. Unfortunately, this victory of his is a defeat for the families who have been at the waiting end of justice.

Modi’s blog conveniently overlooked the sufferings of these people who lost their dear and near ones. It is silent on the delivery of justice to them and only talks about his ‘personal grief’ and ‘silent suffering’ over the riots.

So, the question arises whether Modi is morally and conscientiously capable of offering an apology for the tragedy that his Muslim subjects went through under the very nose of his administration. After all, he built his political career on the ashes of the innocent victims of the riots and the religious and social polarisation that took place after the communal violence, benefitted Modi in not one but three elections.

During his three terms as the chief minister of the state, Modi never attempted to reach out to the minority. On the contrary, he played on the prevailing prejudices of the majority against the Muslims and exploited the religious tension to the hilt.

Modi and his administration made no attempt to reconcile two communities who have co-existed for centuries. In fact, he did the opposite. If one were to go back in time and see the language that Modi used after the 2002 riots to win votes, one would see that it was not the language of contrition and anguish; it was the language of revenge or victory.

He even refused to visit the relief camps where the families of many victims took shelter and his refusal seemed to justify the tragedy.

Modi then went on to promote and protect those who were involved in the riots. A female legislator was made a minister despite the charges of murder against her but she was forced to resign later when a court convicted her for the crime and gave her a life sentence.

With such heinous acts under his belt, in my opinion, the BJP leader lost the moral right to apologise a long time ago. But then, why is there no intense media scrutiny of this man who aspires to be the leader of India, when he has been an active participant in such immoral acts?

India’s corporate media treats him with kid gloves and there is hardly any debate about the appropriateness of the man for the post of the prime minister. In fact, for quite some time there has been a concerted attempt to promote Modi as a mascot of development who can usher in a new economic dawn to the nation.

It is obvious that the large industrial houses, which are promoting such a divisive character as the leader of the nation, have their economic interests in mind only and are not concerned about the bigger harm that he and his ideology can bring to the well-being of the country.

There is no doubt that the majoritarian agenda that Modi represents would harm the pluralistic character of the nation. His ascension has the potential to strengthen all the forces that want to see India as a hard-core Hindu nation. It would give legitimacy to his deeds in 2002 and it would set the wrong precedent for the country because Modi is quite literally the anti-thesis of what India has always represented, and the compassion that should define a ruler is definitely not his hallmark.

So perhaps we need to be asking a different question: does India deserve a prime minister who cannot feel the pain and suffering of his own people?

Do you think Modi’s blog is a political strategy to gain votes?

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sanjay.kumar

Sanjay Kumar

The author is a New Delhi based journalist covering South Asian and international politics.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • abhi345

    Even if he didn’t write anything in the blog indians atleast hardcore hindus dont care.He will become PM whether muslims like it or not. No human nor god is going to stop modi from becoming PM. Wait and watch.Recommend

  • SM

    If I had been born yesterday I would tend to believe you, Mr. Author. Now that I know a bit of history, law, and modern arguments for and against Mr. Modi, this authors arguments seems hollow façade to hide his contempt for a right wing party. Every country needs balance, and there was a need for a right wing party because clearly the left wing one would have destroyed India because of its grandiose ideas about India, which was nothing but hollow claims to hang onto power. We all believe in an Idea of India but spare me the totalitarian jibes because BJP ain’t it, and please don’t insult the victims of real fascism and Nazism who really bore the brunt of an evil regime. But obviously a country that doesn’t know its own history cant be expected to know European history. Do you know how people give their mandate, its called vote. And truly, there is no substitute for it, no matter how many hair brained ‘analysis’ is inflicted on the masses. Gujarati people have given that mandate 3 times already to Mr. Modi and if he is able to get it at a national level, good luck to him. This is an election his to lose. The deck is stacked against him at all stages and kudos to him, if he comes on top. That’s because he is a self made man, unlike the prince and princesses whom our dear author have us believe lies India’s salvation, but the thing is, I disagree. And the real question is, will India agree with me, who things Mr. Modi deserves a chance, or with the Author, who things, he does not. Thankfully we don’t live in the totalitarianism of the intellectual either, therefore let the numbers speak, despite all the fear mongering, we will have to wait and see what the masses decide.Recommend

  • Naveen

    India’s big city Post-Modernist Post-Colonial Pseudo-Marxist crowd sound as absurd as religious fundoos of Hindutva brigade. Dear friends, We are going to have a national election not a courtcase in 2014.

    An overwhelming majority of Indians are not (selective) Human Right activists and never will be (human beings by nature are selfish) – all people worry about is the socio-economic interests of their local social group and that of locality. The Party which can keep max number of such local social groups/communities happy tends to win the elections and form Govs. It is here that Congress, unlike BJP or Communists, has done remarkably well .One reason is that Congress lacks a rigid ideology that allows it to be acceptable to all sections across religious/caste/class barriers. Second reason is the organisational spread of Its grassroot networks in every nook & corner of the country- even in most North-East states & Kashmir Valley. If any other party/alliance can beat that in 2014, it will lay claim to Delhi, all else is rubbish.Recommend

  • Haris Javed

    INDIANS!! bring AAP in power and show what you have learned with your continued democratic sessions!! our fragile democratic system failed us to bring PTI in centre.. .Recommend

  • Justice Miscarried

    The fire in the train was possibly caused by a stove but it was blamed on the Muslims to create a basis for the massacre. Modi delayed action by the law-enforcers to let the casualties multiply. The article is a well written.Recommend

  • Realist

    As a Pakistani I really hope modi wins. His anti-Pakistani hostility is extremely well recorded even if in recent months he has kept his mouth shut. So hopefully when he wins, his Anti-Pak reality will become obvious (unlike Congress who hypocritcally kept it under wraps) that way all these greedy aman ki asha activists will just go into hibernation underground and stop yapping away dumb meaningless slogans. I mean no hostility or disrespect towards Indians, I accept it as a reality that their politicians and even most of their populace hates us as evident from the comments on the blog and on their tv channels (the vice versa sentiment also exists in Pakistan) hence lets not pretend otherwise and make meaningless empty statements about peacetalks and tradetalks which everyone knows will lead to nowhere.Recommend

  • Sulfuric Acid

    Oh… Someone in india feels pain for muslims. Glad to see that. Recommend

  • abhi098

    As an atheist I support aap in delhi but I rather live under modi’s facism at the centre than so called secular people.Recommend

  • Hello

    AAP will stop Modi.Recommend

  • vasan

    If Mr Modi wins the election and becomes the Prime minister, let us accept that the reasons are
    1. Corruption by Congress
    2. Violence by Pakistan and support of terrorist activities affecting India which the Congress has failed to tackle properly.Recommend

  • Suman Chandrakar

    lol AAP lost many votes when they supported most corrupt party congress.for me AAP and congress both are same in next election.Recommend

  • Suman Chandrakar

    lol modi means buisness .i don’t think he will give a crap about pakistan after becoming P.M.Recommend

  • Truth Told

    Modi aided and abetted the killing of the Muslim minority in
    Gujrat violence, 2002. He orchestrated the violence and belatedly let the law
    enforcing agencies to halt the blood-letting. No one dared to attest against
    him and against those involved on his behest, as they knew what their fate
    would be if they did. Appeal against clearing him is pending in the Supreme
    Court. His new stance of economic development sans communal discrimination is a
    political ploy to get Muslim vote to help him win the power at the federal
    level. Only communal minded people would try to defend him.Recommend

  • Realist

    I hope so too thats the case because your PM manmohan singh has been begging us for mfn status and superficial economic talks, whilst ignoring the more obvious issues.
    Leave us alone entirely infact. Which includes trolls like you coming over here to comment obsessively on a Pakistani newspaper websiteRecommend

  • uhuh

    I love how Indian’s have rallied the secular cards for years, and now are bending over backwards to rationalise Modi a candidate whose clear banking on the right wing Hindu, and is not even putting up the pretenses of being a secular. Imagine how strong the evidence of his involvement in the coverup of some of the biggest humanitarian crimes has been that hes banned from travelling to US.
    I am happy for you guys coming out so openly and honestly about your the majority’s voting preference. Please dont preach to Pakistanis, you lot are no different when it comes to bigotry and that preference will be obvious when it comes to the votes this time.Recommend

  • Beef Burger Lover

    I really appreciate your honesty and frankness in saying out aloud that ‘hardcore hindus’ will be pulling all the shots in this election. I am glad India’s reality will become clear to the whole world and the whole charade of sham secularism (which was always nonexistent) will crumble for good once Modi comes to power. I am glad we got our own separate country , where we have our own majority representation, and are not under your thumb. I feel sorry for the rest of the minorities and all others that got left behind.Recommend

  • UtkarshSinghNain

    Modi in all his speeches has always been completely secular. He’s stated at his rallies that the only religion for a government should be the constitution. I fail to see how he is not secular, if not even more secular than the Congress.

    Personally, I want to vote for Modi but not for BJP (even more since it showed how regressive it was on section 377). It’s a paradox.Recommend

  • Justice Miscarried

    Modi’s election as PM would set back India for many years. The trust that was built by secularism will be dented and the Muslims will become alienated thereby the fruits of integration would dry out. Ominous times for India.Recommend

  • Faulitics

    To most Indians, Pakistan is relevant only Asa. Trouble making state which creates terrorist incidents. For people like me who follow politics and terrorism, it’s an amazing country. It’s really a “hot” country for people interested in studying terrorism and fanaticism.Recommend

  • Critical

    That report was later proved to be false and 33 muslims were sentenced to prison and they also admitted that they bought petrol and they burned the boggie…and Modi has been acquitted of any wrongdoing by several courts

    Looks like Pakistanis have this selective memory… They ignore the BBC reports,Blood Telegram and various indpendent sources about Bengal genocide but will rather point to a 3rd rated author Sharmila Bose’s book that the genocide never took place…Recommend

  • Crtiical

    Modi shouldnt be Prime Minister because he was reluctant to take action during a riot targeted at a particular community and then said “When a big tree falls,the earth shakes”

    Oops,sorry wrong forum,that was Rajiv Gandhi who was playing golf in Gymkhana while Congress supporters were killing Sikhs….and you know what he used the death of his mother to get sympathy vote,even though 2000 innocent sikhs were killed in the aftermath….

    Maybe Sanjay Kumar should check the background of the party which is paying him to write such blogsRecommend

  • anon

    With the hate mongers and bigoted rabid’s set to win the election in India, this is a sectarian time-bomb that will soon blow up in India too. You have had problems with Sikh terrorists (khalistan movement), naxallites, maoists and go knows what other insurgencies actively going on in your country. A polemic like Modi is just fuel to the fire, you are alot bigger country and crammed population density wise hence, the price will be alot higher. If we are a terrorist nation, you guys are a slum dog nation. Please get out off your airy fairy lala land of delusional fantasies and stop preaching to us. Get your own house in order first.Recommend

  • WoW

    Lets hope SAFMA shuts up after Modi hopefully gets elected.Recommend

  • Anooop

    If Jinnah can change track and become secular overnight, after the bloody Direct Action day call, where more people died than in Gujarat riots, why can’t Modi change track?

    Nobody is going to give the entire reins of India to a single person. Indira Gandhi tried it once and Indians showed their mettle in kicking her out.

    Different people with different agendas will think different of Modi; just like liberals will call Jinnah a secular person, the Right will talk about how Jinnah invoked Islam in his speeches.

    As long as he can prove his worth in office, I am happy. If he tries to undo the system or change it negatively, he will lose.Recommend

  • Rps Hundal

    You know what is the meaning of MNF. India has already given an MFN status to Pakistan. Have a talk with an economics professor at Lahore School of Economics and grasp the term MFN. Cheers,Recommend

  • Anooop

    Gujarat has been violent than for the past 10 years, under Modi..

    I wonder how that makes him unsecular, considering secularim means not mixing governance and Religion. Has he passed laws against minorities, for example?

    if Modi is “unsecular” for riots that happened more than a decade ago, so is PPP unsecular for Gojra riots or whoever that was in charge.

    If you can digest Jinnah as a Secular person after he called the Direct Action day, where more people died than post-Godhra riots many times over, why can’t you apply the same logic to Modi?Recommend

  • Enkay

    The Indian Railways provides not only dining Cars but the reasonably good Catering at all Stations – barring the One Bullock Towns where the Long distance Trans do not stop – and as such Indian Train Passengers DO NOT CARRY KEROSENE, LPG OR WOOD BURNING STOVES IN THE PASSENGER COMPARTMENTS. Yes the Extremist Muslims in Godhra – not the normal Muslims whose behavior I can vouch for – did set fire to the Railway Passenger Bogie carrying YATRIS (People who had performed a Pilgrimage). The so called Liberal and Secular Media along with the Congress Party has done a grave injustice to the Ordinary Indian Muslim by trying to play down the Fire in order to appease a very small percentage of Muslims whom the Congress wants to use as a Vote Bank. I do hope that the truth being suppressed by the Congress and it lackeys comes out and these Indian Liberals and Secular Leaders get their just desserts. At the end the TRUTH WILL PREVAIL. PeaceRecommend

  • Enkay

    I hope to GOD that Pakistan DOES NOT GRANT MFN STATUS TO INDIA as the Indian Imports will destroy many Pakistan Industries just as Chinese Imports have destroyed maybe Thirty to Forty Pakistani Industries.Recommend

  • Ankit Singh

    AAP will bring back india to 1970, does AAP have any vision about india, people of india wants job, gdp growth, industrial growth, farmering sector growth ( recentley BJP ruled state MP won best farming award for 13% gdp growth but media havent highlighted that) ATAL BIHARIJI was bjp pm when india started to grow , that time inflation was only 4% now 10%,as far as AAP freebies will increase inflation just wait for 1 year………Recommend

  • Ankit Singh

    if u r indian hope to know the state government of MP , RAJ, MAHA refuses to send police to gujarat………. if u r indian u should know that……Recommend

  • Ankit Singh

    most of the leader of BJP is against the decision of sec377 ,arun jaitley said that if UPA comes with proposal we will change itRecommend

  • Ankit Singh

    it is better we got separated because i dont want by country run by army aur hafeez saeed clearly say for jiyad against indiansRecommend

  • SM

    I know it must be difficult for you to understand Indian secularism, but India is secular because it is Hindu. I don’t say this, one of the greatest Indian said it once, and that great Indian was Mahatma Gandhi. Secularism in the Indian sense does not mean separation of Church and State as commonly understood in the west, although there is elements of that in the Indian constitution. But Indian secularism survives because Indians tolerate multitude of beliefs without bothering to deem each other Hindu Kafirs, as it is popular amongst Muslims. There is no perfect Hindu and no one aspires to become one, and that is the core of Indian secularism. I dont think Indians have any business preaching to Pakistanis, although the result of the great experiment is visible to all of us. However, to think that if Mr. Modi will come to power and Indian secularism will go to the dogs, that is not going to happen, and the Author of this article should be more confident of Indian secularism than he seems to be. Indian secularism thrives because of its pluralist people, not because it has a secular constitution, although it does help in some ways. Mr. Modi is in some ways the agni pariksha of Indian secularism, and my money is on India.Recommend

  • Anshuman Tripathy

    Yes to BJP only if Modi becomes PM
    Yes to AAP if it comes out with a clear economic policy and stops pleasing the communists
    No to Congress no matter what it doesRecommend

  • Anshuman Tripathy

    LoL..thats funny..lets count the number of minorities as well as people of the majority who died in India and in Pakistan just last year shall we? It wont take too long for you to start feeling sorry for the Pakistan that got left behind after partitionRecommend

  • kublai

    You are one of those that cannot stand anything less than glorifying
    about Modi. He is a necromancer. And rules through fear and prejudice.
    A third rate thug.Recommend

  • Gp65

    Modi did not start the riots. He did everything under his power o get them under control including asking help from neighboring states (who did not spare any police and who by the way were Congress ruled) as well as calling the army. Once army came the riots stopped. Those responsible for the riots (bothHindus and Muslims are in jail. Despite congress in centre controlling CBI not a single case against Modi has been proved and he has been acquitted by all courts.

    Tis was not the first riot in Gujarat and all prior riots were under Congress wat h. However Modi made sure it was the last riot in Gujarat and in the last close o 12 years there have been no riots in Gujarat. All riots before Gujarat 2002 and after have been in Cpngress or UPA allied states.

    If despite knowing these facts you are unwilling to let o of our bias then nothing can convince you. One thing is for sure, Muslim leaders like Maulana Madani the head of Deonand have made it very clear that Congress days of fear mongering are over. Muslms will decide based on a tons on the ground. Muslims Gujarat have already made their stance clear by BJP winning seats in Muslim majority areas in Gujarat.

    If someone Recommend

  • Gp65

    Please name one policy of Modi in the 12 years that he has ruled that discriminates against individual because of caste or religion. You cannot name even one. Provide URL to one speech from Modi where he has tried to cause divisiveness. You cannot find one. Just. Ecause Congress has pinned a label on Modi and his supporters of being right wing Hindu that does not make it so.

    In any case, it is not an individual that protects minorities in India it is our constitution and rule of law. Worry about your minorities of which very few are left. Muslims have flourished in Modi led Gujarat and will do so at national level as well.

    Incidentally Ratan Tata is on record as having very high praise for Modi and he is NOT a right wing Hindu. In the Vibrant Gujarat summit last year, there was participation from 131 countries including Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turkey and even Pakistan.Recommend

  • Gp65

    Tell me why do Sikhs, Parsis, Christians and atheists do not feel that they are under the thumbs of Hindus in India? Have you thought about it? Speaking of freedom of worship an Indian Muslim including Shias and Ahmadis and Barelvis who go to mazaars have a greater freedom of worship in India rather than Pakistan.

    You have your country and focus on making it the best you can instead of constantly trying to distort facts and history to justify Pakistan’s existence. Except for a fringe no one wants to roll back partition.

    In India minorities are treated as equal and their source of protection I not an individual or a party but the constitution. This is why non Hindus have been able o succeed in politics business, movies cricket and we have had non Hindu PM, President, CJ, COAS and so on. No country can match India’s record on this aspect not even UK or USA.Recommend

  • Gp65

    Why would you lame BJP for the article 377 fiasco? It was upto Congress to repeal article 377 since it is the ruling coalition. Have they even introduced a bill to do so? If they had done so and Congress people had voted for the real and BJP against the repeal your concern would have been valid. But Congress does not want o do so for fear of losing minority vote (remember it is Muslim and Christian religious leaders who had gone to the courts to appeal the earlier high court decision). Yet it wants to talk the talk for gay right supporters without walking the walk.

    Personally I would like section 377 to be repealed and gay sex to be decriminalized. I do feel however that the SC judgment was correct since it stopped the high court from legislating from the bench. The courts should just interpret laws not make laws and SC was right to make that distinction.Recommend

  • Gp65

    False. Because of the massive scale of the riots, he asked neighboring states to send reinforcements in terms of police but they failed to do so. Then on day 2 he asked for the army but it was posted on the border in the aftermath of parliament attack and took a day to arrive. After day 3 riots stopped. How much more prompt can a leader be? Also unlike 1984 these were riots during which both Hindus and Muslims died. Do you think he is also anti-Hindu?

    Gujarat had been a communally sensitive state and there were many many riots before 2002. But none after 2002. Had he been indifferent o the plight of Muslims that would not have happened.Recommend

  • Gp65

    Do you know the list of 131 countries who participated in Modi’s Vibrant Gujarat summit last year? Let me name just 4. Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turkey and yes Pakistan.

    Modi had invited Pakistan and Pakistan chose to accept the invitation. These are facts that can be. Necked. But for those who will not let facts get in the way of their opinions …well, what can be said.Recommend

  • Gp65

    He did not trigger the violence. It was triggered by burning of 58 Hindu pilgrims. He tried controlling it by asking neighboring states to send their police force on 2nd day itself.when they failed to do so, he asked for the army. The army came on day 3 and the riots stopped. There have been no riots in Gujarat in close to past 12 years.

    Incidentally Hindus also died in those riots. Are you saying that he is also anti- Hindu?

    Can you quote even a single speech by him that tries to divide people on the basis of religion? You cannot. Can you find. Able policy in the 12 years he has ruled which discriminates on the basis of caste or religion? You cannot. That is the true definition of a secular leader.Recommend

  • Gp65

    Gandhiji said that the best way to demonstrate your regret is tO make sure that that action in question is never repeated. Modi has kept Gujarat free from riots in the past close to 12 year. That says it all. Recommend

  • jssidhoo

    You may be a bit surprised ,as I feel relations with Pakistan might improve . Modi is a down to earth man as he has risen from the bottom , he is a tough man and will drive a hard bargain (as I hope does NS) but I am sure he realizes that there can be no prosperity without peace . The fact that he realizes the importance of peace can be seen from the fact there has been communal peace in Gujarat for the last 12 yrs .A very long stretch of peace in a state that had very frequent communal riots earlier .Recommend

  • jssidhoo

    As a Sikh I am with you Gp65Recommend

  • Rakib

    You say:-(remember it is Muslim and Christian religious leaders who had gone to the courts to appeal the earlier high court decision). It’s BJP’s standard practice of propaganda not to get caught with a lie but to suppress truth as far as possible if there is any opportunity to malign Muslims. On the cases involving Section 377 I provide the details here & know it once & for all that Hindu Manuvadi faction was as much a part of the case as Muslim & Christian fanatics. (1) The Case is called Suresh Kumar Koushal & Ors. v. Naz Foundation & Ors.(SLP (c) 15436/2009). Koushal is a Hindu Astrologer (2) The various petitioners in the case are Delhi Commission for Protection Child Rights, Suresh Kumar Koushal an astrologer, Krantikari Manuvadi Morcha, Trust Gods Ministry, B P Singhal, Apostolic Churches Alliance and Utkal Christian Foundation, All India Muslim Personal Board, S K Tizarawala a representative of Baba Ramdev, Petitioner in person from Joint Action Council Purshottaman Mulloli and petitioner in person Ram Murti. (3) The respondent parties are parents of LGBT persons, Naz Foundation, Voices Against 377, Shyam Benegal, Nivedita Menon and other academics, Shekhar Seshadri and other mental health professionals and other law academics.(4) The parties for the state are Union of India, Home Ministry, and State of Delhi.Recommend

  • rasgullah

    Why is Pakistani paper on internet?Remove it from internet and no one would comment. Recommend

  • Talha Rizvi

    Anoop I clearly understand you. As for the direct action day Just read the book written by commander of the Indian army’s eastern command and you will see who suffered the main losses. Also when are you going to discuss the Bihar riots of 1946 Anoop? Secondly you threatened that Indians will comment every where By all means do so You guys have through your comments validated the creation of Pakistan many times over. Also Anoop kindly tell me how 24% Muslims of Calcutta can overpower the richer, More numerous Hindus who were also better equipped with weapon bought from departing American soldiers after WWII.Recommend

  • WoW

    That doesnt change the point that his entire politics is centered around drumming up ‘hardcore hindu votes’ (as quoted by another indian on this blog. There is his record on whoppin gup anti-pak sentiments. Point is after he gets elected, there will be pressure on the pak establishment to pull back from the peace talks from a man who hates pakistan so much. i dont think modi plans to engage pak as agressively as congress did. Honestly I consider it a win win situation.Recommend

  • Talha Rizvi

    I feel sorry for people like you who down rate others to feel Good about yourself. I thank God that my Grandparents immigrated to Pakistan.Recommend

  • Umm…What?

    Yes and when Hafiz Saeed starts talking about unicorns, pokemons and Justin Bieber, we will all start applauding his speeches for being secular and hence put him up for elections as well. Modi talks the talk, but does not walk the walk. Sectarian violence has been problematic in not just Gujrat but other states as well, and not just against Muslims, but against Christians as well ( I am not pulling this out of the air, but from Amnesty International reports and Indian newspapers) but the fact that there has been so much circumstantial evidence and implications against Modi, the fact that this his name keeps coming up even 12 years later, and also considering his banned from entering the US based on his record, means that this man was accountable AT SOME LEVEL if not intentionally then definitely negligently and recklessly for what happened in Gujrat.Recommend

  • BS Detector

    yes and hafiz saeed is also a poor misunderstood guy like ModiRecommend

  • Two Sides Same Coin

    Hafiz saeed is a peace loving guy like Modi, what are you talking about?Recommend

  • Talha Rizvi

    Barelvis are the actual majority in this country no body can deny them the right to worship as for Indians shedding crocodile tears for Shias the people who got killed in Sonipat,Bharatpur etc. in 1947 were predominantly Shia. The Indians don’t distinguish between Shias and Sunnis when it comes to killing. It is good that you mentioned that we should concentrate on our country you see we don’t go to TOI, The Hindu, Hindustan times and rage troll on articles mind your own business,Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii

    @GP65 and all others saying about long stretch of peace in guj.
    This is not because of controlling of Guj Gov. But fear of unequal retaliation. Also the Guj Gov and police is Firmly in favor of MAJORITY COMMUNITY. They cannot get justice easily. In a system where getting justice itself is a hurculean task what would one do if there is full force to not delivery justice.
    lots of cases ampfully proves that gov. of Guj is discriminateory against minorities.
    any way who cares in guj, there are lot of jokes about gujus where there first love is.Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii

    @GP65 gives ex. of Saudi,UAE, pakistan, turkey partispating in SAFMA or whatever…
    GP65 do you know guj riot is India internal problem, why should they all 4 countries u mentioned preach modi or who ever what he does to you or me. are you or me there citizens??? or u hv subconcious feeling that all muslims in india are all citizens of the 4 countries u mentioned.???
    all 4 hv come to guj through delhi, and they hv come to earn so they will praise to hell to get business.Recommend

  • shrikant1384

    Do read Modinama by Madhu Kishwar to know the real facts.Recommend

  • Beef Burger Lover

    Oh please spare me your drama and fake preaching. Unlike you I read an actual newspaper from where I can point out the specific cases which completely contradict your brainwashed claims. I dont think Sikhs will agree with you considering they got butchered by Indra gandhi in one of their holiest temples, something she got shot dead for later by her own guards. Her son got blown up by another extremist outfit. Then theres is Gujrat, Muzaffarnagar (but I am sure Modi was just misunderstood, and the stories just invented by Pakistan). Then the famous case of Graeme Staimes and his two young sons who got burned alive by a hindu mob. Countless cases of churches being attacked or burnt. Even the Pope criticised India for its anti-christian violence. (if you want i will dig up indian newspaper reports for you)Naxallites, Maoists, assam violence.
    You coconut brained jokers need to get your facts sorted out. Instead of getting your history facts from Bollywood, go read an actual newspaper to see that India’s record and history shows that its minority protection and secularism claims are a sham and a charade they conveniently hide behind. Atleast we Pakistanis are an open book and we dont live in a state of delusion.Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii

    no country needs a Right wing…because it is not a converging idea, it is always a diverging/dividing idea. If you say Right wing idea is needed, then British can also say there was nothing wrong in they treating others in there history too????Recommend

  • HAHA

    Atleast we have some breathing space, and unlike you are not packed like a can of sardines and crammed into a slum dog nation like your population is. Oh wait yes that lovely movie Slum Dog Nation, which showed wonderful scenari on the reality of IndiaRecommend

  • India (Hypocrisy) Shining

    Oh Jinnah = Modi? Seriously?
    I suppose using your logic Gandhi = Hafiz Saeed.Recommend

  • BS Detector.

    India’s secularism is a joke. But right now no Indian will admit it because they are desperate to vote for and get Modi elected, so they will come up with every dumb excuse to rationalise.
    You have candidates openly vying for Hindu votes, and playing the Hindutva card and banking on right-electorate, and still you assert you are just being secular? If India wants to behave like a Hindu nation, i have no problem, and it is every Indian’s right to define their national identity. Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii

    GP65 it was not triggered by burning of 58hindus, it was trigerred by some HINDUS teasing a muslim girl at the station.
    Guj Gov. and police did not probe in fairness for guj people because they do not think muslims in guj are guj….
    get that first cleared up they don’t even have capacity to investigate properly in first case leaving out intentions.
    there has been three train burnings recently why no riots because these hindus were firstly fanatics not normal peacful hindus like me.
    these hindus were people who want to show up that they are hindus in there OWN LAND.Recommend

  • India (Hypocrisy) Shining

    One fairy told me that Hafiz Saeed is also extremely peace loving, and is NOT A RIGHTWING MUSLIM, hes just extremely misunderstood. Hence we should should also give him a shot at the ballot and get him elected. It;s not like Hafiz Saeed passed any bad laws himself.
    Yes Muslims are flourishing in India, just like Hindus are in Pakistan. Each of your arguments are such jokes. we have alot of minority candidates getting elected to parliament as well. Should i use this as a shining example of our sectarian record, when so much work requires to be done in Pakistan. No, because I am not like youRecommend

  • Anshuman Tripathy

    like it or not I was only stating facts…Beef Burger Lover made it sound like the minorities in India are suffering a fate worse than the minorities in Pakistan, when clearly they are not. Heck even the majority is suffering in Pakistan.
    Certain Minorities in India may be economically backward but they are never abused , oppressed and constantly in fear for their lives.Recommend

  • India (Hypocrisy) Shining

    Oh now stop it otherwise you will make them cry. And then they will give you a some fuddy duddy diluted definition of what REAL SECULARISM means and as per that definition Modi is secular man. The definition and interpretation of secularism and Modi that these Indians are giving is SO BROAD and SO MILD that it can also be used to include Hitler and Ku Klux Klan into the mix. You gotta love these creative hypocrites.Recommend

  • Realist

    So? take it back if you want. We dont want ANY peace talks, trade talks, or anything to do with you. Your Congress government, and your foreign minister Salman Khurshid has been BEGGING us for MFN status. Please go elect Modi, I heard he hates Pakistan, which honestly serves us fine. Atleast I really hope he will leave us alone.Recommend

  • BS Detector

    HAHAHAHAHAHA What a joke. When Modi gets elected, he should invite Hafiz Saeed to conduct peace talks with India, since I heard they both like to give crazy speeches to the masses so I am sure they have a lot in common to talk about.Recommend

  • Blame the Victims the Modi way

    Lovely arguments and logic. Should be used to explain the violence against minorities in Pakistan.Recommend

  • BS Detector

    Okay, got it mate! All extremists and terrorists should take note of your sage advice. COMMIT VIOLENCE and MASSACRE ONLY ONCE DO NOT REPEAT YOUR ACTIONS JUST LIKE GANDHI SAID!!!
    Clap Clap at your creative ingenuity!Recommend

  • Rakib

    Not Gandhi but fate of Slobodan Milosevic taught him to stay on the straight & narrow. Coincidentally Slobodan’s Trial began at The Hague on 12 February 2002 & by 06 he was dead in jail. BJP keeps repeating this mantra of no-riots-for-this many-years. So what? Thank you for not starting a riot Sir! The corollary would be Modi can start a riot (just as hold it in abeyance) at will! Now that contradicts the claim, may be a correct one at that, that he did not start the riot. Besides, such long periods of peace have always been there & I have lived thru such stretches & I know.The longest peace I have seen in Ahmedabad was 15 years starting 1969. But nobody went about claiming credit for it! He wants credit for lack of murderous aberration, for just letting things be normal! Wow, should I thank him again for sparing my life!? Law & Order is the first job of a CM. And he knows it well even today that world is waiting for half an opportunity to nail him.If Bajarang dal/RSS/BJP/VHP had tried one more stunt like in 2002 UN would have intervened & Modi’s condition globally would have been same as that of Milosevic. The man won’t do it again out of that fear. That fear is the key.Recommend

  • BS Detector

    Modi. I dont need to read one particular book written by one particular person to get understand your version of Modi, when I have already read countless newspapers (a large number of them Indian newspapers over the years) which have repeated the same facts on the same story about the same person. Modi’s history and reality will always haunt him, no matter how many ways you try to justify it or cover it up. it’s a reality own up it instead of lying and being a hypocrite.Recommend

  • UtkarshSinghNain

    At least the Congress has taken a stand. It also said it would appeal against the SC decision in court. Even the AAP has said that it doesn’t agree with the law and that it is against human rights.

    The BJP has categorically stated it is against repealing the law.Recommend

  • Rakib

    There can be conflicting views of the same person on Modi, that is, one would hate the very thought of his becoming PM of India keeping domestic reasons in mind & at same time one would be happy at the way he is projected in popular imagination as a tough talker when it comes to Pakistan. And if that leads to breakdown in talks such people won’t be unhappy. But then all that is conjecture. There is nothing so good about Indo-Pak relations today that it can be made worse by Modi. Foreign Affairs as such will not impact the results in election-14 in a big way. Issue is only this:- who takes maximum vote-share out of Congress kitty. Right now it’s a toss up among BJP, AAP & Regional Parties with Congress holding some surprises. Modi’s past will be discussed to condemn him or praise him for election propaganda, not because milk of human kindness has suddenly started flowing for Muslims!Recommend

  • ModiLoversDontLikeRealityFacts

    Are you sure you are an Indian? If you are, you need to change your passport quickly, before you get eaten alive by all these rabid Modi lovers who resemble character’s of the series The Walking Dead. Once bitten by them you will also turn into, better to run and hide while you canRecommend

  • Beef Burger Lover.

    The reason Indians comment so obsessively on a Pakistani newspaper and then get insulted by us in return is because they still havent digested Pakistan’s creation (or according to them the break up of Mata/Mother India) They are like an obsessed stalker who got dumped YEARS AGO, but will stand outside your house and follow you around. Recommend

  • Beef Burger Lover

    This is what happens when you live in such a population dense country like Indian crammed with 1 billion people. Pakistan is not perfect, and neither do we pretend to be. The Golden Temple massacre that resulted in Indra Gandhi being shot by her own Sikh guards, the Graeme Staines case of Christian man and his young boys burnt alive by a Hindu mob, the attacks on churchs and nuns in places like Assam and Karnataka, the Ayodhya mosque being burnt down, Gujrat, Muzaffarnagar, the pope’s criticism of anti-christian violence in India, I could go on and on and give you links to INDIAN newspapers/official reports that have verified these incidents, but I can’t be bothered. I can debate with people who disagree.
    BTW Talha Rizvi the commenter, (Talha correct me if I am wrong) and if he is ardently defending Pakistan despite the problems it contains Recommend

  • BS Detector

    Mate, India’s secatarian record and so called secularism is such a joke, that even in the movie Slum Dog Millionaire, they showed a Hindu mob burning down Muslim homes. Clearly even the West considers your secularism to be a sham and that is how it gets portrayed.
    Open your eyesRecommend

  • Rakib

    When it comes to Gujarat the suave thrust & parry of a civilised debate that should either be stimulating or enlightening is completely missing. Modi arouses strong passions. Most volatile are those that have no personal stake in Gujarat or know little of Gujarat’s history or psyche. The dialogue about Modi on Indo-Pak fora now is more like a hundredth rerun of a chess-game played by couple of bored Soviet players in the last century where every move & counter move is known, predictable & already written about. Pakistani do not even want to know how many Hindus died (not only in Train but in riots) or how many honest Cops perished in the line of duty. Hindus are in denial on their latent streak of cruelty that became patent or they rationalise couching words in euphemisms to justify to their conscience. They lie to themselves..The least credible & highly embarrassing arguments may well be of a Pakistani Muslim batting for an Indian Muslim for whom he otherwise doesn’t really care, based on his perception of a two-dimensional picture of Gujarat he might have gleaned from Internet. He may have accurate but selective information, but not knowledge. And has certainly no wisdom to share in this matter.Recommend

  • TSil

    Let Modi become PM and then lot of things will happen,,Recommend

  • Anooop

    Hindus are knocking on India’s doorstep to run away from Pakistan, reported here in ET.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/419691/persecution-forces-60-hindu-families-to-migrate-to-india/

    Indian Muslims are running towards Pakistan. Even Dawood Ibrahim’s family lives in Mumbai, even though he sought refuge in Pakistan, after killing 200 people in Mumbai.Recommend

  • Anooop

    You have accounts, dump your entire life on American websites like Facebook, I am sure.

    But, you have a problem in others coming to Pakistani websites?

    Isn’t this hypocritical?

    This is the list of American website you should not visit : Facebook.com, Google.com, YouTube.com, Gmail.com, Yahoo.com.

    First follow your own advice, then preach to others.Recommend

  • Anooop

    This same mantra was repeated by Jinnah with Nehru Gandhi, when BJP came to power in 1998.

    Clearly, there is something in India which has stopped it from going the way of Pakistan. Is it Religion and culture?

    What else could it be?

    India will and just cannot ever be a Hindu version of Pakistan.

    A Sikh PM, for instance, is never ever possible in Pakistan.Recommend

  • Anooop

    Dude, Sikhs form THE BIGGEST ethnic group in the Indian Army.

    Have you seen the present Army Chief? Guess what Religion he follows..

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d9/General_Bikram_Singh_Chief_of_Army_Staff_India.jpgRecommend

  • Anooop

    How thoughtful of you not visiting other country’s news websites.. Kinda explains one dimensional and bigoted views.

    2013 was greeted by an attack on Shias in Jan in Pakistan, where 200 died. It was repeated in Feb where another 200 died. They form the minorities in Pakistan now and we all know how minorities just vanish from Pakistan in few decades. Hindus are gone, Sikhs are gone, Christians are gone, Ahmadis are gone. Now, its time for Shias.Recommend

  • Apples to apples

    Jinnah called for Direct action. Modi never called for any such thing. Hafiz Saeed is Jinnah’s I heritor and not surprisingly highly respected in pakistanRecommend

  • Gp65

    But the congress has NOT taken a stand. Its actions are not consistent with what it says. The court decision is not wrong because it says simply that per existing laws (section 377) homosexual sex is criminal so if you want to decriminalize it, repeal the act. We can only interpret existing law we cannot change them.

    But congress has made no attempt o introduce a repeal motion for fear of losing minority votes. It’s actions and words do not match and in that case I would judge by actions not words.Recommend

  • WoW

    I agree. If India and Pakistan can’t solve the major thorny issues, then they should just maintain the cold peace, where they do their own within the borders and we do our own. Forcing a peace process which does not address these issues, and in future involves Anti-Pak players like Modi and his, will not only not be accepted by the population but only make the bitterness worse on both sides, and only feed into the propaganda machine of extremists on both sides of the border.Recommend

  • anon

    Like what mate? Dont think anything can get worse then it already is. Yes he should focus on economic prosperity but if Modi tries to be his usual antagonist self and stir up hysteria like he has done before then he will be fuel the fire for extremists on both sides and of both kinds Hindus and Muslims, and things spiral out of control. Keep living in a state of denial, until a breeding ground emerges overnight until its too late.Recommend

  • anon

    When Gandhi was shot by a hindu extremist, it became apparent at the very beginning, that India’s secularism was in name only, when in reality it would was be Hindu’s that pull the shot. Please dont give me an example of your Sikh PM, everyone knows he is puppet and a token PM only. Plus with Modi set to come to power, sectarian violence things are about to go south in India as well. Keep deluding yourself about your sectarian record I suppose Graeme Staines, Ayodhya, Gujrat, Muzaffarnagar Golden Temple attack (and subsequently the Khalistan movement) are just fairy tales of imagination. You guys have just managed to brush all this under the carpet and keep a lid on it. But with Modi coming to power, the fake secularism and the brimming sectarian tension will explode and the ugly reality of India will be apparent for the whole world to see.Recommend

  • anon

    I think you’re the one who needs to practice your own advice, because in case you havent already seen, we Pakistani’s dont obsessively comment insults on Indian newspaper websites. Infact we dont care as to what your Indian newspapers say about us. Indian commenters are welcome to comment on the articles and topics on ET and other Pakistani websites by all means, that is if they can do it civilly, intelligently and in a manner that constructively contributes to the debate on the hand. But if they resort to brainless degrading Anti-Pak bashing which is usually the case (sometimes even when its not related to the article in the first) then they should expect an equally below the belt crass response from the rest of us. If Indian’s have such a problem with us dont come here in the first place. If you want to come here an insult, then expect to be ripped apart in return.Recommend

  • anon

    Why are you so obsessed with us when we dont even care about you in return or bother to comment on your websites and newspapers?Recommend

  • Err…

    Good one. I suppose the Khalistan Movement and the Golden Temple was an alien invasion?Recommend

  • India (Hypocrisy) Shining

    Please get out of your lala fairy land of delusions. You have the same problems that we have so please dont preach to us, get your own house in order first. For every allegationa nd article you quote, I will quote back an equally legitimate article showing you how THE SAME PROBLEM EXISTS IN INDIA. Please help yourself to this:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/13/world/asia/13india.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    Forget Muslims, anti-chrisian violence has also being well documented by India (infact it was highlighted and criticised by pope too). Heard of Grame Staines? That poor guy was burnt alive with his sons by a Hindu mob.
    Stop deluding yourselves and pretending like you live in some first world crime free country. You’re still a Third World Country and you still behave like one. And your problems whether its sectarian violence, poverty or violence against women are no different from those faced by us.
    So please…GET YOUR FACTS SORTED…before you come and preach to us. Denying actual recorded facts only makes you look like a hypocrite
    Peace and cheers!Recommend

  • PeaceLovinNonSectrianKilerModi

    Someone should write an article on Hafiz Saeed, and use the same arguments that Indian commenters used in defence of Modi and lets see how that goes down with them.Recommend

  • Rakib

    Hehehe quite gory!! ..If not traveling when in Gujarat I live not far from Modi’s residence!! I am perfectly safe there. Of course, I might as well be on another planet despite the very short distance. Don’t make hasty conclusions about India, especially of Gujaratis. We are instinctively argumentative. We fight today & will become one tomorrow so that we can fight again the day after! Too, don’t get my post wrong,I have high personal regard for the sterling qualities of the person under the nick gp65, even as we totally disagree on many issues related to BJP/Modi. Such differences are good.Recommend

  • PORK eater

    No body cares about your pakistan..It was in india’s intrest that it was made..Growth of both countries is in front of the whole world to see..Indians are not begging like you..Recommend

  • A Hindu

    You seem to be blind..be aware, you may get a pork burger instead of a beef one..I have seen your comments through out this page..I dont understand why do you need to go deep in india’s internal matters..Why are hell bent upon announcing that india is not a secular country..is it your business? Whether we are secular or non secular..we are living happily..minorities here are well represented and happy..remember 1971 and go to deep freeze..or you may like to stop the drone attacks on your country..Recommend

  • Ankit Singh

    okay which country has low rank on human development index,rampant corruption, polio nation , more illerate people , more bombs , more disease , more child per couple… & many moreRecommend