Month: October 2005

Attack on Delhi: Stop Blaming Pakistan

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf that he expected Pakistan to honor its promise to end cross-border terrorism. And this comes at a time when both countries are decidedly allowing not just the line of control to be deregulated, but also the manufactured cultural division across borders be illegitimated. Any impediments to that will only result in suspension of the planned facilitation. There is no good reason why such a movement needs to be postponed at this point. Crucial to remember here is that such intense acts at promoting mutual friendships have come not out of some vacuum, rather with concerted efforts by people across borders to challenge the status quo. People of Pakistan have clearly seen through the empty barrels of Benazir Bhuttos and Nawaj Sharrifs. Indian population has also collectively rejected the right wingers like Vajpayee and Advani. Empty rhetoric aimed at insulating people of shared cultural past (and political heritage too in their drives against colonial powers) have finally been attacked widely. Artistes have exchanged places despite threats from …

India’s violent freedom struggle: Who appealed for the peasants?

In a world driven by infotainment, the dividing line between what has been written and how they have been interpreted becomes blurred by the day. Although a critical scholar, by no means I claim a post-modern critique of illusory truths. There indeed have been revolutionary struggles for the better and there indeed have been reactionary efforts to suppress them. Avoiding mind contact with the same not just amounts to an intellectual privilege, but also leads to callous indifference. Let’s then visit the original documents. You may not find them anywhere else on the web. But I am sure my romance with the keyboard to bring back what might have been forgotten in a deliberately fast-paced world of ours, will surely be a small contribution towards the continuing struggles. In understanding that the freedom struggles in India was not as exotic as is often portrayed. That it was a gory revolutionary war on the imperialists, the homegrown reactionary landlords and the alien capitalists. It was violent. Despite pleas from the reformist pacifists, the peasants, farmers and …

Top 10 cited authorities

Alright. So who are the top 10 authorities cited in American academic journals? They are in the following order: 1. Karl Marx 2. V. I. Lenin 3. William Shakespeare 4. Aristotle 5. The Bible 6. Plato 7. Sigmund Freud 8. Noam Chomsky 9. Hegel 10. Cicero I chanced upon this while viewing the video Rebel Without a Pause. What struck me most was I almost always believed that it was Marx, Bible and Chomsky in that order. It still is in that order. But well, I had no idea some others too went in between. Especially, Lenin at No. 2!

India’s Freedom Struggle and Baji Raut, the Youngest Martyr

Much has been written about the anti-colonial struggles of Indians which finally ensured that the Sun indeed set on the British Empire. 1947 steadily but surely set the world on a new order to march for freedom with rekindled hopes.Ironically, the first martyr of this struggle was not some giant figure of world history ever studied (like Gandhi, Nehru, Bose etc), but a 13-year young revolutionary from Orissa, whom the historians have conveniently let go from the collective memory. Historians, they say, are more powerful than God. They have the power to even change the past. So the mainstream history teaches us how to be passive, how to live by leaders, how to wait and watch, how to calm down to pragmatism, how to compete for our own survival. It teaches us to be mature like the successes, not restless like failures. For it tells us who the successes in the world were and how history is always narrated through their voices. And yes, we have learnt from history, that not all of us are …

Lesser Gifts of the Western Gods

The other side to child labor. Does it provide for a hope?This postcolonial report won the “One World Broadcasting Trust / Unicef 1998 Advancement of Children’s Rights award”. And now available for direct viewing online. Click here to watch. Also important to remember that Titu makes a living, nurtures a dream and does not give up. The reality is indeed more interesting than any fiction. And more painful. Recent Oscar fancies include child prostitution in south Asia. Indeed, the movie Born Into Brothels: Calcutta’s Red Light Kids got India the Oscar she needed as much as late Mother Teresa got the Nobel Prize that India deserved! Apparently the story of Sonagachi was not meant to be shown to Indians, because the film makers think it would violate the identity issues of children (as though Calcuttans don’t have cyber cafes on the streets). Makes one wonder about the socio-economic parameters and where the line is drawn between ‘subject to exploitation’ and ‘right to make a living’. More importantly, one needs ponder the grueling reasons behind any …