Monthly Archives: DECEMBER 2017
ANOTHER BJP MINISTER TURNS SANSKARI
No boy will marry girl who comes to mandap in jeans: Union Minister Satyapal Singh
In what appears to be a controversial remark, union minister of state for human resource development Satyapal Singh on Sunday said, "No boy will be ready to marry a girl who comes to the mandap (wedding stage) in jeans.”
The minister, sharing a stage with UP CM Yogi Adityanath at a function in Gorakhpur added, "Similarly, no saint will be revered if he gives up his traditional attire and wears jeans.”
”Koi aadmi agar kehne lage ki main jeans pehenke kisi mandir ka mahant ban jaaunga to log pasand karenge kya? Koi pasand nahi karega. Ya koi ladki jeans pehenkar ke shaadi ke bedi pe jaayegi to kitne ladke usse shaadi karna chahenge?”
He was making those remarks in context of the appropriateness of attire in Indian culture and was addressing a group of students at the concluding ceremony of the foundation fay of the Maharana Pratap Siksha Parishad (MPSP), the academic arm of Gorakhnath Temple.
The minister hailed the MPSP for preserving the values associated with Hindu culture and rendering services in the field of education and health. The Gorakhnath temple also runs hospitals, blood banks and Ayurvedic treatment centres.
Satyapal Singh released two books with Adityanath on the occasion. These were: ‘Bhartiya Sanskriti’ and ‘Gorakshpeeth : Yoga Evam Sant Parampara’. Both volumes have articles of the chief minister.
Singh said it was the good fortune of Uttar Pradesh that Yogi Adityanath was given its reins.
Satyapal Singh is the Minister of State in the Ministry of Human Resource Development and Minister of State in the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation. Singh is a former Mumbai Police commissioner who quit his job to join politics. Earlier this year, he was made a part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cabinet.
'If not Vande Mataram, then will you salute Afzal Guru?' asks Vice President Venkaiah Naidu
Hinduism is our culture, our tradition, Ashok Singhal a finest proponent of Hinduism: VP
INDIA'S VICE PRESIDENT Venkaiah Naidu once again stoked the controversy over Vande Mataram and asked if those objecting to it actually wanted to salute Afzal Guru instead of their Mother India.
Naidu said Hinduism is "our culture, our tradition”, which has been passed on from generations, and condemned those objecting to saying or singing ‘Vande Mataram.’
"If not the mother, who will you salute? Afzal Guru?” the Vice President of the Republic of India said.
References to Afzal Guru are often made by BJP leaders to underline alleged overt or covert support to Pakistan/terrorists by not just Muslims in India but also by the larger liberal, left or secular elements in Indian polity.
Naidu's comments came on a day when India was shocked by a video that had gone viral of a man killing a Muslim man in cold blood, hacking him and then burning him, and later circulating the video of the gory killing. In the video, the accused is heard spewing hatred against Muslims, referencing Love Jihad and efforts to 'distort' history through films like PK and Padmawati. Many have raised the question if such hate crimes were not being prompted by anti-Muslim venom by rightwing leaders.
References to Afzal Guru are often made by BJP leaders to underline overt or covert support by not just Muslims in India but also by the larger liberal, left or secular elements in Indian polity.
Interestingly, Naidu was speaking at an event where he released a book on former Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) chief late Ashok Singhal, who had famously proclaimed after the victory of Narendra Modi in 2014 that Delhi had come under Hindu rule after 800 years. Singhal had also compared Modi's rise to power with the rule of Prithviraj Chauhan, considered to be the last independent Hindu ruler in the sub-continent.
Ashok Singhal headed the ultra right VHP and was in the forefront of the movement for the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya. He also famously described Modi’s victory as return of Hindu Raj in India.
Naidu thought it fit to describe Ashok Singhal as one of the "finest proponents of Hinduism” who "sacrificed” 75 years of his life for the benefit of future generations. Singhal headed the ultra right VHP and was in the forefront of the movement for the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya.
The VHP had earlier demanded abolition of the National Commission for Minorities, and had actually passed resolutions seeking an "immediate scrapping of both the Minority Commission and the Minority Affairs Ministry.” The VHP's stand is that the "very idea” of these institutions "gives credence to a separatist mindset”. The resolution was passed in a meeting of VHP’s Central Governing Council held at Vadtal (Gujarat) on June 24 and 25, 2017. That it was a considered opinion of the VHP was clear from the fact that this particular VHP council meeting was attended by around 250 representatives of VHP from all over the country, besides leaders of its "sister organisations”, including Bajrang Dal and Durga Vahini.
The VHP had earlier demanded abolition of the National Commission for Minorities, and had actually passed resolutions seeking an "immediate scrapping of both the Minority Commission and the Minority Affairs Ministry.”
Certain other RSS affiliates like Swadeshi Jagran Manch also oppose several union ministries.
How minorities would react to Vice President Venkaiah Naidu's hailing of Ashok Singhal, a dyed in the wool leader of the VHP, is yet to be seen. Singhal, the international working president of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) for over 20 years, died in November 2015.
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MAMATA, KEJRIWAL LEND SUPPORT
Yashwant Sinha protests at police ground against BJP-led Maharashtra govt
Veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha has pledged to continue his protest supporting the cause of farmers in Maharashtra, a day after he was released from the police station for leading a march in the connection.
The former Union minister, who has had frequent run-ins with the current BJP leadership, was detained last evening while protesting against the state government's "apathy" towards the farmers of Vidarbha. He was taken to the district police headquarters and later released.
Sinha, a former Union finance minister, is leading a protest by hundreds of cotton and soybean farmers who are demanding compensation after their crops were damaged by pests.
However, the 80-year-old leader refused to leave and sat on a dharna at the police ground, where he spent the night. He said he will not budge from the venue till all demands raised by farmers are met.
"The district administration held talks with us till late last night but didn't accept our demands. We won't budge from this venue till demands of farmers are met," Sinha told reporters.
On Tuesday evening, two opposition Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Arvind Kejriwal also came forward and tweeted in support of senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha. The former finance minister has accused the Maharashtra government of his party of apathy towards farmers of the Vidarbha region.
Photos showed the 79-year-old leader sleeping on a wooden cot in the open ground last night, surrounded by farmers.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has tweeted, "I am concerned about @YashwantSinha Ji former Union Finance Minister in jail. I am sending our MP Dinesh Trivedi to meet him. @YashwantSinha is fighting for the cause of farmers. He has our full support."
"Why has Sh Yashwant Sinhaji been arrested? Insane. He shud be released immediately," Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said also on Twitter.
Pavan K Verma, who is the national spokesperson of the Janata Dal (United), a BJP ally, said it was "worrying that senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha has been arrested in Akola, Maharashtra, on orders of a BJP government, for the crime of protesting against the administration's apathy towards cotton and soybean farmers in Vidarbha."
Sinha accused the BJP of reneging on promises made to farmers while addressing them at the Kapus Soyabean Dhan Parishad organised by Shetkari Jagar Manch in Akola on Sunday,
"Before coming to power, the BJP had promised to give 50% over and above the minimum support price (MSP). But after coming to power, the party forgot the promise,” Sinha said.
The Parishad has sought purchase of all farm produce by the government at an MSP of Rs 50,000 per acre for cotton farmers affected by the pink bollworm disease besides the resolution of issues related to farm insurance and relief to drought-affected villages.
The former union minister said, "My protest is not political. I have had no words with Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. Neither has he reached out to me, nor have I tried to talk to him.”
He added that he will not get involved in any party politics. "I am fighting for the farmers. I don’t want to get diverted from the issue. It is nothing to do with any politics.”