Showing posts from October, 2016

It is our responsibility to fight the indifference and darkness around us: Shashi Shekhar

To explain what I am trying to say, let me share two heart-rending stories. In the first, at the beginning of the week, a woman leaves her home in Gurgaon for her workplace. To board the Metro she enters the MG Road station from gate number two. She is surrounded by a sea of humanity. CCTV cameras keep an eye on every corner of the station and so do the soldiers of the Central Industrial Security Force. Suddenly a stalker attacks her with a knife.In the presence of hundreds of people, the assailant stabs her 30 times. The woman cries out for help. She tries to escape and writhes in pain, but no one comes forward to help her. The attacker keeps stabbing her till she dies. Hailing from a remote place in the North-East to make a living by doing odd jobs in Delhi, neither the woman nor her loved ones would have thought she would meet such a tragic end in the national capital. Gurgaon: Stalker stabs and kills woman at MG Road metro station The second story is from Muzaffarpur

Ramesh Babu - Kerala will turn into dogs’ own country, says anti-stray campaigner

He says the powerful anti-rabies vaccine lobby is behind the chorus against the culling of violent strays...“Recently a senior IAS official wrote an article saying in India rabies vaccine business is worth Rs 7,000 crore...Kerala is their biggest market. They want strays to multiply so that their business will thrive.”  Indias 20,847 deaths are over one-third of the world’s total - the highest incidence of rabies globally -  BBC For almost two decades Jose Maveli, a Kochi-based activist, has been rescuing abandoned children and helping them piece together their lost childhood but lately he has been in the news for the wrong reasons. The 66-year-old activist has floated a statewide movement to eradicate stray dogs and is facing eight cases under the prevention of cruelty to animals act. He was arrested and released on personal bail in seven of these cases. After the death of a 90-year-old man, who was mauled badly by a pack of violent canines in Varkala in south Kerala la

Eric Sherman - What The Dakota Access Pipeline Protest Says About Race And The Sad State Of American Democracy

We are witnessing a critical moment of resistance in  Standing Rock.  Over 200 tribes have coalesced, uniting in peaceful protest. Thousands of people have come together to ask only for what is theirs ― land and water, yes, but also basic human rights. They demonstrate because their sacred home has been routinely and callously violated by a profit-hungry, colonial machine. Colonization still thrives in America. It simply cleverly hides behind the glossy PR of opaque, faceless corporations. The Dakota Access Pipeline is a literal tentacle that reaches deep into the pristine, but untapped natural resources of the vast Bakken Formation, leeching oil to the unquenchable refineries of south Texas. Death to the colonized happens more slowly than 200 years ago, but just as inevitably, as communities relegated to the surrounding reservations are excluded from access to quality health care, non-toxic surroundings, and economic opportunity. Be cautioned that the media will inevitably co


For King and Another Country: Indian Soldiers on the Western Front, 1914-18 ;  by  Shrabani Basu Reviewed by Kate Imy (University of North Texas) Published on H-Asia (October, 2016) As a journalist and author of popular nonfiction, Shrabani Basu has an eye for a good story. This proves to be a major asset throughout her impressive new book, For King and Another Country: Indian Soldiers on the Western Front 1914-18. Any narrative of India’s contributions to the First World War benefits from the dramatic realities of the historical events. Over 1.5 million Indians including combatants and noncombatants served in the conflict, resulting in the loss of over 72,000 dead or missing (p. xxi). South Asians served in all fields of battle—from Singapore to France, Hong Kong to Mesopotamia—although Basu focuses almost entirely, as her title suggests, on the western front. Yet she recognizes that British concerns about sedition and revolution during the war spanned the globe, leading to decision

Sam Alexander - “The pain we feel is capitalism dying”

I was drifting through cyberspace recently, not really absorbing the words in front of me, when I came across a sentence that tripped me up, so to speak, and forced me to pay attention.  That sentence read: “The pain you feel is capitalism dying.” The writer went on to explain that it hurts because we are inside this dying system, we are inside this unsustainable form of civilization while it is undermining the life support system we call Earth, and what is perhaps most unsettling about this is that it’s not yet clear what comes next; nor is it obvious that the global problems we face even have smooth, painless solutions. The hour is dark and a bright new dawn is not guaranteed. The words left an impressio n on me I think because they describe that strange, existential ache that we probably have all felt at some time or another, when contemplating how we should live our lives in a world that seems so tragically off track. I am referring here to the emotional or what one might even

Kashmiri Pandit Sangarsh Samiti (KPSS) Letter to Prime Minister - Security Concern of Non-Migrant Kashmiri Pandits living in Kashmir Valley

NB:  A petrol bomb was thrown last evening (Oct 28) on a Kashmiri Pandit's house in Kulgam in south Kashmir. The handful of Pandits in south Kashmir, especially, have been feeling very threatened after the killing of militant commander Burhan Wani. In several cases, policemen guarding Pandit camps have been attacked and their weapons snatched.  Repeated requests to PMO and HMO from the local Pandit activist, Sanjay Tickoo, have gone unheeded.  Please see the latest appeal to Mr. Modi by Sanjay Tickoo.  It is the government's responsibility in Kashmir - and elsewhere in the country - to protect and ensure the safety of the minorities. In 1990, the government utterly failed to do so, leading to the mass exodus of the Pandit community. This time as well, the current government has shown no interest so far to provide adequate security to the minority Pandits. If any member of the minority community in Kashmir is harmed, the blood will be on the government's hands -  Rahul

Shobhit Mahajan - An Infinity of Questions

In May, 1543, as the Polish polymath  Nicolaus Copernicus lay on his deathbed, he was presented with the printed version of his magnum opus, De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium . With this work, Copernicus managed to not just overturn centuries’ old dogma regarding the structure of the cosmos, but also relegated human beings from the centre of the Universe to an insignificant corner. The beginning of what is called the Scientific Revolution can also be dated to the publication of this important work which proposed a heliocentric instead of a geocentric world. The Scientific Revolution is when we take science as we now know it to begin. Bacon, Gilbert, Galileo, Harvey, Boyle, Hooke and Newton were amongst the pioneers of this new approach to understanding nature- an approach which placed experimentation and mathematical formulation at its heart while also adopting a mechanistic view of nature. Institutions like the Royal Society and the French Academy of Sciences also played an imp

Supreme Court slams Govt, says can’t let you decimate the system

NB:  The Modi government wants a pliable judiciary dominated by the executive, but of course only as long as that executive is largely controlled/dominated by the RSS. In India the fascists will subvert the constitution through an accumulation of surgical strikes, and one of the most devastating, if they succeed, will be a subjugated, brainwashed judiciary . (Comment by a friend) Questioning if the Central government wants the entire judicial system to be “locked out”, the Supreme Court said today that it “cannot allow the executive to decimate the system” by what it called was its “inaction, inefficiency or unwillingness” to appoint judges. Lashing out at the government for sitting over the files of judges’ appointments despite clearance by the collegium nine months ago, a bench led by Chief Justice of India T S Thakur said that the government can niether “scuttle the working of the institution” nor be allowed “to bring the entire system to a grinding halt”. Resist degrada