Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Gujarat and "the pogrom"

Five years after Godhra and the pogrom

The article is filled with subtle insinuations and some damning ones using clever jugglery of words, wild exaggarations and suggestive associations.

What else can we expect from a political formation that draws ideological inspiration from M.S. Golwalkar who wrote in We, Our Nationhood Defined, 1939: "The foreign races in Hindusthan must entertain no idea but those of the glorification of the Hindu race and culture, i.e. of the Hindu nation, and must lose their separate existence to merge in the Hindu race, or [they] may stay in the country, wholly subordinated to the Hindu nation, claiming nothing, deserving no privileges, far less any preferential treatment — not even citizen's rights." Gujarat is today's laboratory for testing and realising not Mahatma Gandhi's vision of Hindu-Muslim amity and communal harmony but Golwalkar's 1939 vision. The Sangh Parivar organisations make no bones about this.

The ideological categorization of Sangh Parivar in the last para is a well orchastrated campaign. The anti-dote suggested is Gandhi's vision of Hindu resistance to Islamic aggression.

Gujarat is today's laboratory for testing and realising not Mahatma Gandhi's vision of Hindu-Muslim amity and communal harmony but Golwalkar's 1939 vision.

Now lets look at what Gandhi wanted the Hindus to do. Full article posted here ( link via greatbong)

Gandhi urges his subjects to end life

Report appalling India riot toll

So by similar categorization, it is fair to say that Gandhi's vision of Hindu-Muslim unity is for Hindus to commit mass suicide.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Election strategy for Congie victory

A long countdown has begun

Khare once again outlines what the Congress must do to achieve elctoral success. He starts off by terrorizing us for BJP's electoral success. Then the Left is touted as the saviour of "aam aadmi". And then his prescription for Congress:

1. The UPA allies must be mindful of "coalition dharma" i.e. they must support Congress unconditionally.
How about the Left?

2. Congressmen must stop petty politicking.

3. Sonia Gandhi must learn many lessons.

4. The advisers must function as eyes and ears of "high command".
I thought that is exactly what the boot-lickers did. They supported Sonia Gandhi and not Congress as is evident from the glee they expressed when the Prime Minister's public meetings in Punjab were poorly attended as compared with Ms. Gandhi's rallies. Khare here is clearly working on the assumption that Congress is Sonia and Sonia is Congress.

5. The partymen must drop factionalism and the institutionalised small-mindedness.
Khare tells us Congress is a terrible organisation but he clings on to this dead weight.

6. Congress needs a massive purge.
Khare says Congress must not be Congress any more.

7. Ms. Gandhi will need to let the party know what plans she has for her son, Rahul Gandhi.
Hail the dynasty. At this point, let us understand why Rahul is important for Congress.

The current state of suspended expectations is demoralising to the cadres and the leaders alike. The party needs to be educated that young Rahul Gandhi has no magic wand, and that organisational revival hinges on hard work and dedication from one and all.

Khare says Rahul Gandhi is not the answer; every single congressman must work hard for the party's revival. So Rahul is irrelevant. Then why do we need to ressurect him? Khare contradicts himself too many times just like most communists. But Khare is special because he can do that within the space of a few words.

8. Sonia Gandhi must not function as the Leader of the Opposition.
Whatever that means. Did anyone see BJP?

9. Start preparing for next parliamentary elections, which are two and half years away.

10. Re-discover the rationale of the arrangement put together in May 2004.
Stick to the UPA coalition of opportunistic politics.

11. Dont render Dr.Sonia-sharan Singh a lame-duck Prime Minister.
Has he not been one from the start?

Congress crushed; N.Ram squeaks

Moderate setbacks to Congress

N.Ram calls the Congress performance in polls as "moderate setback" while Indian express calls it
crushing defeat.

Anti-incumbency verdicts seem to be the rule in Indian elections

N.Ram starts off with an excuse for Congress' defeat. Its never Congress' fault if they lose. For some reason, this logic doesn't work with BJP.

BJP ... has however failed to capitalise fully on the negative factor and score a convincing victory

Yes, BJP's victory is no victory. Lets celebrate for Congress' increase in vote share.

...chauvinistic politics of the SAD and the BJP

Here goes the b.stard with baseless allegations. Why is SAD/BJP politics chauvinistic? Any reasons? Is it because it is not an ally of CPI(M)?
What the heck, let me go ahead and call N.Ram a bloody terrorist.

This can be attributed to a combination of factors: `anti-incumbency' (which is not much of an explanation and only begs the question), the inescapable in-feuding, and, most importantly, a lethal rise in the prices of essential commodities.

N.Ram does a full u-turn and says anti-incumbency is not a sufficient justification and goes ahead to list the real reasons. By now, he must have realised his communist priorities of supporting only the left.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Parties' response to Rail Budget

Left concerned at privatisation of subsidiary services

This report matches with The Chindu template - the party responses to an event are presented in an order starting with CPI(M) followed by CPI, Congress and, if space permits, BJP.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Karat spits; N.Ram swallows

A principled stand: Karat

"Let me put it this way. It was because of us that the Government in U.P. was not dismissed," he(Karat) said.

N.Ram reproduces this in his editorial.
Crisis defused
...only the frontal opposition of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and its warning of a political "breach" with the UPA minority government saved the situation.

Sonia wins "decency" award from Khare

A way out of the logjam
Seeing the numerous awards being doled out to film personalities, Khare decided to come out with an award for politicians - the "decency" award. After licking Sonia's boots clean, he awarded the "decency" award to Sonia for having the most "decent" pair of boots. Meanwhile, Man-moron ran to the nearby church to buy a baptism certificate to come back just in time to be anointed as the PM.

Karat first among equals: Comrade N.Ram

Majumdar's body donated to city hospital

I feel like I am reading PD. In the esteemed red-lettered yellow pages of The Chindu, Karat takes precedence over all other comrades. With Karat cited on a daily basis, you would have thought that CBCNN is the official blog of Karat.

"Karat first" policy

Karat hails poll announcement

It has long been the editorial policy of The Chindu to publish any opinions on major political events with CPI(M)'s, preferably Karat's views followed by CPI's. Space permitting, any other party's or person's views may be included based on "editorial judgement".

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Anonymous sources on CBCNN

BJP's allies not with it on U.P.

A senior BJP leader said: "If President's rule is imposed, the Congress would commit a constitutional sin and we will get the electoral benefit even as a crack will appear between the Congress and the Left.

spindianexpress has shown us how the commies use anonymous sources to peddle their pet theories. CBCNN is using the same tactic here. Some senior BJP leader mysteriously whispers in the ears of a special correspondent his views. Suprisingly, these match with the correspondent's pet theories. Hallucinations, anybody?

Karat's new photo

Congress fails to convince Karat

Finally, we have a new photo of Karat. CPM is one hate-filled party, its agenda always being anything but BJP. Here too, the reason for opposing President's rule is:
The party thinking is that only the Bharatiya Janata Party stood to gain from an ouster of the Mulayam Singh Government.

CBCNN hails Maoist conclave

Maoists to resist formation of SEZs

The congress, attended by over 100 Maoist leaders from 16 States, was intended to fine-tune the course of armed revolution.
...transform the People's Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) into a People's Liberation Army (PLA); and advance guerrilla war into a mobile war.

CBCNN can't hide its loyalties. Notice the tacit support it lends to this terrorist organisation.

The Maoist party called upon people to revolt and oppose the government programmes.

The Maoist opposition is to all government programmes and not just SEZs. It wants to create PLA in India, directly reporting to the Chinese PLA ofcourse.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Castiest Christian clash; CBCNN blames police

Orthodox march lathicharged

The headline suggests that the police acted without provocation against the faithful. Notice the absence of the word "Christians". And the carefully inserted "allegations".

The violence began at 4.30 p.m. when some protestors allegedly threw stones at the police.
They allegedly mobbed and beat up two police officers.

But the allegations by Church authorities become facts mysteriously.

The Church authorities said journalists had assaulted one of their members in front of the police.

RSS is Stalinist: Khare

It is neither high nor commanding

the RSS being assigned the institutional role of the old-fashioned Stalinist political commissars.

The Nehruvian-Stalinist Congress is not the one associated with Stalin but it is RSS. That is Khare for you.

Also notice this: if Congress is bad, BJP is just as bad, emphasizes Khare. You cant miss Khare's tone deriding BJP, while conviniently ignoring the nepotism epitomised by Congress.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Contradicting editorial stance on banning movies

The Da Vinci Code:

Clearance and the Code
CBCNN hailed the tolerant stance of Catholic bodies but lamented on the Government's procedure for clearing the film. It also wondered how the Government would have reacted if the clergy demanded a ban.

The movie was released and the inevitable mayhem followed. State governments imposed a ban. This when Christian nations did not have any problem with the movie. The Christian groups went on a rampage in India. CBCNN meticulously covered all the events. A few are given below:

`The Da Vinci Code' banned in State
Goa bans The Da Vinci Code
The Da Vinci Code banned in Pondicherry
Tamil Nadu suspends screening of The Da Vinci Code
Christian groups attack Imax theatre
`Da Vinci Code' banned (in Punjab)

But there was no editorial by N.Ram lambasting the ban by state governments and the violent threats by the Christians. When cornered, the communists scoot.

A lumpen foot soldier, A Srivatsan writes about the ban on DVC.
Films and the politics of convenience

And boy, is he sermoning!

The issue in focus is not which community the government supports and which it does not. In fact, such a discussion distracts from the important issue of allowing multiple views to circulate and foster tolerance of contestations and criticisms.

All the other movies in the list attack Hindu sentiments and they have not been banned. The only movie to be banned involves Christian sentiments. The author is cleverly asking us to ignore government support for Christians because it is *** a distraction ***.

In all these incidents, the films were not banned but screened. Rajaji's response to Parasakthi is worth recalling in the present context. He was unhappy with Parasakthi but allowed it to be screened. He said the course of freedom could not be dammed and things could go on until people learnt themselves about what was worthless.

But the Da Vinci Code movie is banned. So, the state government is wrong, isnt it?

But the State Government can suspend the exhibition of a film if it considers that it will cause a breach of peace. This arrangement has its logic and use. Hence discussion on how a State Government can ban a film like The Da Vinci Code, which is certified by the Central Board of Film Certification, is not entirely valid.

There you go. The State Government is justified in banning Da Vinci Code.

This was evident in the case of Fanaa, a harmless Hindi movie twisted and banned for untenable reasons.

And for further justification, the author is indulging in misinterpretation. Fanaa was not banned by the Government. It was a boycott by the community for social and economic reasons. The Gujarat police offered protection but the theatre owners acted in their best interests. Emphasis : the state did not enforce a ban.

Did The Chindu write an editorial on Fanaa and Parzania? You bet.

Fanaa : New heights of intolerance
Parzania : When bigotry blocks the truth

Soon after he expressed support for the Narmada Bachao Andolan, the State's movie houses were forced to withdraw his hugely successful Rang De Basanti, after party workers from the BJP and the Congress staged protests against him and declared they would not allow his films to run in Gujarat.

Both BJP and Congress protested against Amir Khan. So it is evident that the people of Gujarat entire the political spectrum boycotted Amir Khan. Inspite of all this, the government did not enforce a ban of the film to gain some political score or indulge in sectarian appeasement.

Five years later, his regime shows neither remorse nor respect for the rule of law — which is a good part of the reason why cinema owners in Gujarat are terrified of showing Parzania.

Baseless statement. Just as Gujarat collectively decided to boycott Fanaa, it decided to boycott Parzania. If the regime did not respect the law, it would have banned the movie just like the Tamilnadu government which "suspended" (why this bloody euphemism?) the Da Vinci Code. While Gujarat is willing to ignore communal violence and move ahead with development, The Chindu is indulging in slander and character assasination of Gujarati Hindus.

Is there a difference between the State Government banning films and people boycotting films?

How is it that the State Governments of Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Nagaland, etc which banned Da Vinci Code are more tolerant than Gujarat, which did not indulge in banning the films Fanaa and Parzania?

Why is it that the Gujarati Hindus and Modi are sinister, bigoted and intolerant whereas the Christian groups, which went on a rampage against Da Vinci Code, are peace-loving?

Chindu's hypocrisy

When hard news is a casualty

The Hindu's policy of not promoting astrology and keeping out features like astrological forecasts (from the time of Kasturi Srinivasan who described predictions in newspapers as "mass cheating", though he himself personally believed in astrology...

The Chindu never mades bones of its hypocrisy.

The Chinese success story

Hu's African tour a huge success: China

The huge success of Mr. Hu's tour ...

Chinese utopia

Subsidy extended for aged rural parents in China

Karat opposses FDI again

Karat opposes FDI in retail

The never ending story of Karat in "The Chindu".

Karat opposses FDI

Karat opposes FDI in retail

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Forward Bloc protesting against its own govt.

Price rise: Forward Bloc plans protest

The All-India Forward Bloc — one of the four Left parties supporting the UPA at the Centre — on Saturday said it would launch a nationwide people's movement against price rice as the Government had ``miserably failed'' to keep the prices of essential commodities under check.

Reality check: Forward Block has 3 seats out of the 543 seats in the parliament. It contested in 10 seats and had to forfiet deposit in the remaining 7. A nationwide movement.

A protest against its own govermnet policies?

Karat is back

Centre should not go ahead with SEZs: Prakash Karat

Its been an extraordinarily long time since Karat appeared on "The Chindu". Anybody got news on what he has been doing for past 10 days, not appearing on the yellow rag.

Here he is opposing SEZs. He supports SEZs in West Bengal inspite of the strong protests. He opposes SEZs in rest of India even though there has been no objection whatsoever. And Karat blames SEZ policy. Beats all common sense.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

"People's Democracy" editorial on Chindu

CPI (M) objects to Mulford statements on Pranab's Iran visit

Curious readers ask what is the difference between "People's Democracy" and "The Chindu". Actually, very little. One is the official mouthpiece of CPI(M), the other unofficial.

CPI (M) opposes divestment

CPI (M) opposes divestment

What's news?

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Celebrate China's sattelite launch success

China launches satellite

CPI(M) blaming righ-wing is short-sighted

It is a peasants' movement in West Bengal: Citizens' panel

A group of concerned citizens "with a Left orientation" who visited Singur and Nandigram on a fact-finding mission have observed that the struggle against the Government take-over of agriculture land for industry was a "land issue" and the protests there were a "mass uprising" which should not be mistaken for right-wing politics.

Finally the truth is out. The bloody communists blame their mistakes on "Saffron brigade".

Did Sena lose Maharashtra municipal elections?

Sena celebrates despite some losses

The Shiv Sena-BJP alliance has lost a large number of the seats it won in the last election

I was left wondering if Sena actually won or lost in the municipal elections. The article only lists the failures of Sena and BJP and completely ignores the fact that it has emerged as the victor.

Thankfully, there are other newspapers out there. I found a more balanced report on rediff.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Lavalin deal in Kerala

CPI (M’s) Bofors: Lavalin deal could dent Marxist image

Popular perception associates middle-class heroes with intellectual corruption, hardly ever with financial corruption. When Rajiv Gandhi became prime minister he was called Mr Clean. Bofors exploded that image. The Congress never recovered from the blow.

Among political parties the Communists enjoy a reputation for steadfastly maintaining middle- class morality. Allegations circulating in the grapevine, such as collusion by some of their leaders with stock market manipulators, have never been sufficiently authenticated. Now nemesis might catch up with the CPI (M). The Marxists might soon get their own Bofors-like scandal.

The scandal revolves around the deal struck between the Kerala government and the Canadian hydroelectric firm, SNC Lavalin Co. Controversy surrounded the deal ever since it was signed in October 1996 by the CPI (M)-led LDF government in Kerala. But it was only last week that it acquired the dimensions of an impending crisis.

Responding to a petition the Kerala High Court, on January 16, ordered the CBI to probe the deal. The CBI of course might well succeed in cover-up, as it does almost unfailingly with political corruption. But that should provide small comfort to CPI (M). Bofors remains unsolved but that has not prevented mud sticking to the Congress party.

In the Lavalin deal the Kerala Power Board signed an MOU in 1995 with Canada’s SNC Lavalin Co, appointing it as consultant for modernizing and replacing generators in three hydroelectric projects in Kerala’s Idukki District. The Congress-led UDF government was then in power. In February 1996 the contract was expanded to include the project’s supervision, technical assistance and sourcing of funds. The project was specified for completion within 3 years. The Consultancy fee was set at Rs.20.31 crore.

But rot set in around October 1996 when the CPI (M) headed the government. The late EK Nayanar was Chief Minister. Pinarayi Vijayan, the present state secretary of CPI (M) and rival of the current CM VS Achuthanandan, was the Power Minister. A high powered official team led by Pinarayi visited Montreal to revise the Lavalin contract.

The consultancy contract was expanded to include a supply contract for procuring equipment. The consultancy fee remained unaltered. But for buying equipment an additional Rs.149.15 crore was committed. It might be mentioned that Lavalin itself did not manufacture power equipment.

The contract also became a tied deal. An accompanying grant for the Malabar Cancer Centre Hospital was negotiated. Lavalin committed itself to mobilize Rs. 98.3 crore for the hospital. Mr S.Varadachari, then Principal Secretary, Finance, questioned the tied deal and the grant offer as a ploy to bypass accepted norms of tendering. His file noting enraged Pinarayi, who declared that the secretary should have his head examined.

The signing of the contract was rushed through in 1997, ignoring the lower offer for the same job by BHEL, a public sector undertaking. So much for Marxism!

In June that year Pinarayi Vijayan signed the new MOU with Lavalin in Montreal in the presence of Chief Minister Nayanar. Lavalin pledged to complete the cancer hospital in four years. By March 1998 Kerala’s power board as well as the cabinet had formally approved the deal, including the grant to the hospital.

The recommendation of an experts committee headed by E. Balanandan, a veteran Marxist leader and reputed expert in powerrelated matters, was ignored. This panel had assessed that the costs were excessive and BHEL could have delivered effectively.

By July 2005 the Congress was back in power. The Comptroller- Auditor General (CAG) pointed out serious breach of norms, undue haste, and complicity in the deal. Its report stated that the total cost of hydroelectric projects renewal at Rs. 374.5 crore incurred heavy losses to the exchequer.

In January 2006 the State Vigilance and Anti- Corruption Bureau ruled the deal out of order because no tenders had been invited. In February the Vigilance department recommended charge-sheeting top officials.

In March 2006 a writ was filed in the High Court demanding a CBI inquiry. The Congress government in power decided to hold the inquiry. This was followed by the usual kind of cover-up. Vigilance claimed a crucial file involving Pinarayi was missing. The SP who investigated the case went off on long leave.

Nevertheless, the Vigilance Director, Upendra Verma, submitted an FIR, without consulting the government. It was the last phase of the Congress-led government’s tenure. The Left government was expected to return to power. The Congress government tried to shift Verma. The Election Commission blocked the move because the model code was in force. In July 2006 the CBI found a prima facie case and asked the State Vigilance to hand over files.

A contempt of court petition in the high court alleged that CBI was softpedaling the probe. The CBI somersaulted and told the court that as a central agency it could not investigate the case because the Central Government had not issued the necessary orders for transferring the case. The High Court criticized the State Government for assuming there was no need for a CBI probe. The court directed the incumbent Government to respect its predecessor’s commitment in court. On January 16, 2007, the Kerala High court decreed that the CBI must probe the Lavalin deal.

The evidence is damning. The cancer center received less than Rs 9 crore. Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, a Pinarayi loyalist, was an unofficial member of the Power Board when the deal was finalized. He is also on the board of the cancer hospital from which the grant money vanished. Of the Rs 98.3 crore pledged to the hospital only Rs. 12 crore was paid to Technikalia, a company in Chennai.

Why was this company authorized to receive the grant? An account had been opened in the SBI Thalasserry branch, where the hospital is located, to credit the grant. The CAG reported that the entire Rs.374.50 crore spent on the renewal projects was wasted because no renewal goals were reached. Some of the replaced equipment is already unserviceable.

Not an extra megawatt of power is being generated from the three hydroelectric projects. This scandal has rocked Kerala. As Malayala Manorama calculated, if the estimated loss is divided among the state’s population, every Malayali pocket has been picked to the tune of Rs.106! The national media of course remains too preoccupied with more pressing national and international issues, such as the Bachchan wedding and Shilpa Shetty.

So how will Comrade Karat and company respond to this exposure? Will they simply let the law take its own course? Or will they conduct an inhouse inquiry? Perhaps Comrade Surjeet who has NRI family members in Canada could help them follow the trail?

Bigoted "Anti-Hindu"

When bigotry blocks the truth

which is a good part of the reason why cinema owners in Gujarat are terrified of showing Parzania.

"The Anti-Hindu" shows what a bigoted paper it is.

Allot 15 % resources to Muslims

Tax corporates and the rich: Left

It also emphasised the need for a sub-plan allocating 15 per cent of the total resources on all development programmes for minorities, especially Muslims.

The communists once supported the partition and now they are paving the way for it. The Chinese national newspaper obviously supports this "Muslims first" policy.