Note: This post was intended to be a part of another project that accidentally got published. There could be errors. Feel free to point out any problems in comments.
Mapping some connections mentioned in media at various times. Work in progress as new information comes in, or gets disproved.
Stars are people. Pink/white stars are public employees. Red circles are organizations. Green circles are foreign funding organizations.
It is very cluttered. Feel free to move nodes around. Refreshing page will change layout and sometimes is useful to get a less cluttered random layout. Clicking labels will highlight connections to it as well as display some information below the graph. Clicking the "x" next to labels will delete that node (useful for decluttering by taking out anything irrelevant). Reloading the page will serve a fresh random layout with deleted nodes restored. You can also scroll to zoom and drag around if need be.
No matter how you look at this, it is looking extremely unlikely that the member of a think tank chock full of armed forces and intel agency retirees goes abroad and meets anyone without colleagues knowing what he is up to. If the claims of Vaidik being a lone wildcard operator are true, there are worse worries about the quality of our security professionals than what he did.
If you like this map, do comment, I'm thinking of creating such interactive graphs for more subjects.
Focus on trade likely to be the defining feature of Modi's foreign policy
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi touched down in Bhutan on June 15, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was hosting a special Indian guest and his companions in Islamabad, who had come for a Track II dialogue. While the Prime Minister's Office is tight-lipped about editor and columnist Ved Pratap Vaidik's visit to Islamabad, he is believed to have gone to Pakistan as the representative of the RSS, tasked with dispelling misunderstandings about the Sangh Parivar and its south Asian agenda.
Vaidik had travelled to Lahore on his own to meet Sharif in May last year after the Pakistani leader won the elections. In return, Sharif, reportedly, rewarded him with rare access and contacts, which he used extensively during a trip to Pakistan early this year to convince its leaders that Pakistan can do business with India under Modi.
Najam Rafique of the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad, which is hosting the Track II dialogue, told THE WEEK that Vaidik represented not just the RSS, but also Modi. “Vaidik is visiting us as an emissary of the Indian prime minister. On June 23, he is addressing an in-house meeting at ISSI. The agenda is how to revive the Pakistan-India dialogue process and what issues are to be taken up. The Indian side is resisting to discuss Kashmir,” he said. Sources in Islamabad said the Modi government's focus was on trade, especially getting the non-discriminatory trade agreement ratified by Pakistan. Rafique, however, said it might not be easy and would require some arm-twisting by India. “The Pakistani side is insisting that Kashmir should be on the table during the Track II dialogue. But, there is a widespread understanding that trade has to come first,” he said.
Given the sensitivities involved, not all details are on public domain, but Union Minister Arun Jaitley's comment about a possible dialogue with separatists in Kashmir has added to the sentiment that the Modi government will manage south Asia unconventionally, with a surprise cast of characters, if necessary. Darakhshan Andrabi, leader of the Jammu and Kashmir Socialist Democratic Party, who is lobbying Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh for creating an alternative political platform in Kashmiri politics, said the Track II dialogue with Pakistan was aimed at attempting an enabling condition for going ahead with other aspects of life, like trade and development.
Former foreign secretary Shyam Saran said the Modi government's emphasis on trade with Pakistan, the rest of south Asia and the major world powers could well be the defining feature of Indian foreign policy under Modi. “Allowing Pakistani banks in India and the State Bank of India to operate in Pakistan and granting non-discriminatory market access to India by Pakistan will add to India's growth economy status. Much of our diplomatic stalling of the last five years happened because the world, after celebrating our economic growth for some time, suddenly started perceiving us as a low-potential economy hobbled by a weak political structure. India's diplomacy will change dramatically if Modi can create an impression by his initial deals in south Asia and Japan that India will prioritise trade over other differences, whether big or small,” he said.
These priorities will be reflected in External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj's foreign trips as well. Swaraj, fresh from her tour to Bhutan, accompanying Modi, is expected to leave for a meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on June 26, carrying forward the Look East dynamic of Modi's foreign policy. Already, the Bhutan visit of Modi is being interpreted as a message to China not to snatch away India's partners in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
Saran said the September session of the UN General Assembly, which Modi was likely to attend, would give his team another major opportunity in perfecting its trade diplomacy. In Washington, DC, the United States India Political Action Committee, the organisation that facilitated the pre-election US visit of Rajnath Singh and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, is doing unofficial groundwork for Modi's visit. “We are excited about the defence IT sector as a new area, as India plans new investment zones in defence production,” said Sanjay Puri of USINPAC.
An immediate challenge for Modi will be in breaking ice with Italy, which is taking advantage of the football season by selling T-shirts with the names of the Italian marines charged for killing two Indian fishermen off the Kerala coast. “The European Parliament will be headed by Italy from September and there is a possibility that tough Italy-India ties might hurt India-EU ties,” said a European ambassador.
The Modi-Swaraj-Doval team has begun with an intense plan of action. But, given the uncertainties in the world of diplomacy, it may also need some luck to succeed.
Modi's tenure has begun with a bang:
* Neighbouring heads of state at the swearing-in ceremony * First foreign visit to Bhutan, emphasising its significance * Back-channel talks on with Pakistan * Hosted Chinese foreign minister and Russian deputy PM * Talks scheduled with Bangladesh PM * Interactions being worked on with leaders of the US and Japan * Renewed focus on trade diplomacy
As the magic 49 number of days of Modi sarkar comes to a close, it has been a good journey. Looking back at some of the hilarious points of what is fast coming to be known as the U-Turn sarkar.
Should India be entertaining Pakistani VIPs if there is conflict at the border?
That is how the Modi sarkar began. Before, Modi had only contempt for Manmohan Singh's sarkar that apparently did not retaliate strongly enough to Indian soldiers being killed at the border. That too, in Telugu, it seems.
Modi himself had refused the evil Pakistanis in a massive demonstration of patriotic solidarity. Little did Dr. Manmohan Singh know that when people say his silence was a problem, they mean it. He could have tried something as simple as inviting Pakistan's Prime Minister for an important national function. Like so:
Or perhaps I may be wrong, and this may not be a patriotic move so much as the first installment on the election campaign expenses. Even as the poor beheaded jawan's wife was protesting. Sometimes greater good has to be seen.
But at least Modi was right about the other borders I think. Illegal Bangladeshis are such a nuisance. Modi was right to threaten to deport them
but there is a problem. After all, he'd just invited their Prime Minister for his coronation. So he at least tried to get rid of the "illegal" from it, if not deporting.
The solution was so simple, one must really wonder why Dr. Mannu never thought of it. Simply allow them visa free entry - voila! Now they can stay where they are legally!!!
This Modi sarkar is pure genius, I tell you.
What about that evil Gandhi bloodline (excluding the pure blood of Varun Gandhi, BJP). Dr. Subramanian Swamy had Priyanka Gandhi red handed. Multiple DINs! That evil witch and that Karti Chidambaram!!!
Appropriately terrified, Priyanka Gandhi confessed to making multiple applications and offered to pay the fine (and nicely ignored the jail time, thank you very much).
But wait. That was before. Now that Modi sarkar is in place, the greater efficiency showed that Priyanka Vadra may have applied as many times as she liked, but the super efficient (retrospectively as well) Ministry of Corporate affairs had actually issued her only one DIN. What a DIN about DINs. Just like Nitin Gadkari (No, you can't check now, the extra DINs nicely show "not yet issued" now that a better government is in place.)
Modi sarkar had Vadra terrified while UPA2 was in rule.
Then, as they campaigned, they probably thought a panicked Vadra would fight too hard to defeat them, so they kinda.... reassured.
And never let it be said BJP goes back on its word. Robert Vadra remains unscathed.
They had even terrified the couple together. Imagine losing security privileges and having to go through security checks at airports? I bet the couple lost sleepless nights.
Modi Sarkar has brought acche din to the country.
Jaitlet had thought that the Income Tax exemption slab should be raised to 5 lakh before the elections. Now that he got to present the budget, he raised it to 2.5 lakh.
Hey! No need to get outraged! If you ignore the decimal point, 25 is five times 5.
What about investments in railways?
Everything perfect on that front. Just watch.
We have no hesitation in telling you that UPA2 would have totally messed up the privatization of railways and FDI, but now that it is a BJP sarkar and BJP no longer plays dog in the manger with the government, many things that UPA2 wanted to do are now possible without BJP staging a walkout against itself.
Still not convinced? You are a cynical sickular. Try this.
Oh wait. I meant this.
Amazing, isn't it, the things you can do when you can get a dozen newspapers to publish near identical articles without sources that can push things that happened before the election aside? Like this one?
There are many, many such gems. And you cannot blame BJP. After all, they have delivered the only real promise they made before the election - Modi as PM. To avoid confusion, they even avoided publishing a manifesto as far as possible.
So you really cannot claim that they cannot do U-Turns.
Welcome to the opening innings of U-Turn sarkar. May the remaining period be as hilarious as so far... and may worries about the country never plague your dazzled brain.
Note: This post actually has a lot of things missing (mostly because I got tired of doing screenshots). Feel free to nominate your favorites to this collection in the comments. I will update as and when I am back in the mood to play screenshot-screenshot.
Some ideas to get you started. Google up what Jaitley thought about declassifying the Henderson Brooks report on the 1962 war before and after the elections
or Aadhaar cards, or.... you get the idea? Or you could try non-specific U-Turns like strict action against criminal politicians, inflation, using ordinances in non-emergencies and the infamous "Acche Din"!
Let us begin with the video of the king of "carefully presented BJP interviews", Rajat Sharma interviewing Baba Ramdev aide Ved Pratap Vaidik.
Even as respected journalists flee a sinking media, the entire media seems to have let this pass unquestioned. Ved Pratap Vaidik has no authority to engage in dialogue with anyone. This cannot be called a journalistic endeavor, since there is no documentation, or for that matter any new information not previously known being disclosed. It is no documentary type visit bringing insight to an entity. Instead, he seems to have held a bilateral dialogue with an entity we consider criminal.
Is the BJP also legitimizing a track of dialogue between extremists of both countries?
What does Ved Pratap Vaidik have in common with Hafiz Saeed other than organized religious Nationalism with stakes in national politics?
He speaks of their talks as a cultural exchange, asks after his objections to Narendra Modi and views with regard to Modi's potential visit to Pakistan. Now let us get this clearly. India considers Hafiz Saeed to be a terrorist. He is no representative of Pakistan recognized by India to interview for acceptance of the Indian Prime Minister. This undermines India's efforts to pressure Pakistan to curb radicalization against India by giving legitimacy and seeking acceptance from someone we consider to be a terrorist supporter.
Here are some quotes. I leave you to decide for yourself what Ved Pratap Vaidik is up to and what Rajat Sharma is doing when he projects an action clearly against India as some kind of achievement. Not to mention the whole pantheon of Indian media who appear to not have noticed this at all, or have not found it worth questioning.
baatcheet shuru karnese pehle, kuch tasweerein hum darshakon ko dikha dete hain. Lahore ki ye tasweerein hain. subah mein savva ghante lambi mulakaat hui Ved Pratap Vaidik ki Hafiz Saeed se. ek kamre mein sirf Hafiz Saeed or Vaidik sahab the. Vaidik sahab aap.... (Before beginning the talk, we bring you some images. These images are from Lahore. In the morning, there was an hour and a quarter long meeting between Ved Pratap Vaidik and Hafiz Saeed. Only Hafiz Saeed and Vaidik sahab were in a room. Vaidik sahab, you...) ~ Rajat Sharma
And amazingly, after showing images of the meeting, Rajat Sharma completely skips asking what gave Ved Pratap Vaidik the authority to do a one on one meeting with a non-state actor of another country that asked about the acceptability of the Indian Prime Minister in the opinion of someone declared a terrorist in India. He directly moves on to ask details of the meeting as though it were a formal dialogue with any legitimacy!!!
Now, if this were anyone other than a Modi supporter, the TV channels would be rightfully screaming outrage over the fact that the meeting happened at all, let alone got reported in detail over national TV in such glowing terms. The fact that the meeting seeks a terrorist's opinion on the Indian Prime Minister is an insult to India!!! Even if he is a product of an allied religious fanaticism industry. The expectation is that he represents the country now. It is no matter of pride that religious fanatics engaged in harm to the country find him acceptable!
Talk of terrorist associations. There would be more outrage if non-BJP Indian politician had an opinion on Modi. Apparently it is more acceptable to be a terrorist than a non-BJP politician?
Then Ved Pratap Vaidik drops these gems unchallenged by not just Rajat Sharma, but anyone in Indian media so far.
Quoting Hafiz Saeed in first person: media ke baare mein jab baat hui, to unhone kaha ki aapka media mujhe baar baar dahashatgad kehta hain. aapke propaganda se america prabhavit ho gaya aur america aur united nations ne bhi mujhe dahashatgarh ghoshit kar diya.... (when we spoke about media, he said that your media calls me a terrorist repeatedly. America has got influenced by your propaganda and America and United Nations have also declared me terrorist.)
Conveying Hafiz Saeed's view and then the astonishing response to the accusation of Indian media calling him terrorist.
lekin unko maine spasth kiya ki ye sirf media ki wajah se nahi hain. ye uch aisi ghatanayein Pakistan ki taraf se hoti hain ki jikse karan logon ke man mein ye vishwas pakka hota hain i koi na koi badi deheshatgarh takat un sab ghatanaon ke peeche hain, jisse pura hindustan bilbilaa uthta hain. (but I made it clear to him that it isn't only because of media. These are some incidences from Pakistan's side, due to which people believe that there is some or the other big terrorist power behind them, because of which entire Hindustan trembles.)
What. The. Fuck?
India thinks Hafiz Saeed is terrorist because it trembles at the terrorist power behind some incidences from "Pakistan's side" (as opposed to any role by Hafiz Saeed and denied by Pakistan state)? And really? Hindustan trembles, which is why they think he's terrorist? Reminds me of the "hysteria" accusations made at women. "Hey, Hindustan is overreacting because they're terrified, they mean you no harm." And this joker is proudly sharing this with whole country without any questions raised on a channel known to be pro-Modi-sarkar. Makes one wonder if Modi sarkar's plan is to prostrate India!
Descriptions of Hafiz Saeed's grandeur follow. Thousands coming to listen to him, then Vaidik went to meet him. Lived in a dense, upscale locality in Lahore, his security is better than Pakistan Prime Minister's, he has high stature in Pakistan, I got the impression he doesn't want to meet me but he called me, then he immediately said he had heard our complaints in media and asked me to tell him about myself, etc.... note that this man Hafiz Saeed, whom Vaidik is giving glowing details of being allowed to meet, is calling for Pakistanis to fight India for the "freedom" of Kashmir often in his public meetings.
Vaidik is describing discussions of how Hafiz Saeed said we share a common culture. How his mother came to Pakistan pregnant with him. Then Hafiz Saeed asked about Modi's wife and he said that he has no wife in the manner we understand wife and is a bachelor for all practical purposes. Sangh pracharaks are bachelors. Then he described sangh, brahmacharya and so on.
Then Vaidik asks why Hafiz Saeed has enmity with Modi. Erm... WHAT? Hafiz Saeed denied enmity with Modi (which probably means that bhakts on Twitter will like JuD better now). Vaidik asks about the treatment Modi will get if he comes to Pakistan, and Hafiz Saeed says that they will give him an open hearted welcome. So the question is, what visits does Vaidik think India's Prime Minister will do to Pakistan where Hafiz Saeed will provide hospitality.
And Vaidik asks whether Saeed too is a brahmachari and Saeed replied that he has three wives. And so on.
Nor is this a one time connection. Ved Pratap Vaidik confirmed to journalist Aditya Raj Kaul that he had been seeking a meeting with Saeed for a while since his meeting last year got cancelled.
@KanchanGupta He says, "I wanted to understand him". "Last year a dinner meeting with him got cancelled, so met now on July 2nd."
He paints a glowing picture of Hafiz Saeed as a humanitarian messiah who has been defamed. Repeats Saeed's claim that he was framed by Rehman Malik. Bluntly denies allegations of terrorism on Hafiz Saeed's behalf based on HIS OWN interactions in Islamabad and Lahore. Sidesteps questions of calls for jihad in Kashmir that are ON RECORD and states that Saeed made a very favorable impression on him. In short, he openly contradicts India's stand on Hafiz Saeed ignoring all evidence to the contrary. Or perhaps, he simply sees nothing wrong with religious zealots doing humanitarian work and inciting violence using the popularity it brings them. Sound familiar?
This is a far cry from BJP's so far rabid stand against Hafiz Saeed and given that statements of this magnitude are made on National media without any objection from BJP (indeed a defense of his "motives") - from a party that is happy to object to absolutely every pro-Pakistan/pro-terrorist word ever said and rabidly attacks any attempts to raise questions - this raises serious questions about the BJP government's stand with regard to Hafiz Saeed, and more importantly, his views on Kashmir that were neatly sidestepped, but are a core issue. The government's silence on this interview is ominous.
The interview sounds like Vaidik is out to build relationships and there is absolutely no distinction in the importance given to the meetings with Nawaz Sharif and other official government representatives and Hafiz Saeed. In fact, Hafiz Saeed is compared MORE favorably. In a BILATERAL discussion often featuring India's Prime Minister.
Given that there is no censure, nor any specific interrogation of Vaidik after extensive contact with a wanted terrorist in a trip featuring meetings with official Pakistan government representatives, is this rubbish is actually sanctioned by Modi?
This interview and the complete lack of scrutiny is a FUBAR of massive proportions, that a completely prostrated media is happy to ignore. It raises questions about the government's intentions with regard to prosecuting terrorist acts against India, entities that are actively trying to separate Kashmir from India and the overall questions of developing relations between extremists of the two countries. NONE of which can be good for India.
If Hafiz Saeed is innocent or mistakenly accused, his name should first be cleared officially before such overtures. Regardless, abundant public speeches inciting large crowds against India exist, and such overtures seem inappropriate even if he were not guilty in 26/11. And if there is no change in status in India considering him guilty in 26/11, then what Ved Pratap Vaidik did amounts to an action against India's interests.
Goes much to say how much the new government is undermining India's interest that the only place this interview shows is on a channel that did a carefully scripted interview of Modi, the rest of media is silent and there is no censure or even official denial of legitimacy for Vaidik from the government or security agencies investigating in the wake of this travesty.
Update: Hafiz Saeed is a terrorist. Government of India has nothing to do with a journalist meeting him. ~ Arun Jaitley and some other denials and distancing by others. Still no comment on a channel broadcasting a blatantly pro-terrorist show.
India stands at a crossroads. Much depends on how citizens assert themselves. The rise of the right wing in India, apart from bringing about the much hyped Modi sarkar has also emboldened aggressive entities aiming to establish religious dominance with scant regard for law, religion or history. The success of BJP in the elections has validated the methods it used that went unchallenged. The normalization of riots in particular is a matter of concern due to peril to lives and livelihoods of citizens.
The murder of the IT professional, Shaikh Mohsin Sajid in Pune is an example. Objectionable images shared on Facebook led to a rapid mobilization of right wing activists and within a few hours of them being shared, Pune descended in chaos. While media has maintained its sterile coverage, undeniable reports from the ground indicate that Muslim properties were targeted specifically. The murder of the Shaikh Mohsin Sajid by a Hindu Rashtra Sena mob appears to be a well planned act that got celebrated with the message "pahili wicket padli" circulated by activists of Hindu Rashtra Sena. "pahili wicket padli" is Marathi for the "first wicket fell".
While BJP supporters on one hand deny any affiliation with the Hindu Rashtra Sena, the protests in Pune had been called by BJP, Shiv Sena and Hindu Rashtra Sena. BJP, Shiv Sena, Bajrang Dal and other right wing leaders have held places of respect in official Hindu Rashtra Sena events and so far, no one has condemned the Hindu Rashtra Sena outright, while BJP's social media teams have been mobilized to deny affiliation with Hindu Rashtra Sena on one hand, while anonymous accounts bully anyone who condemns the attack on the other hand. And Shiv Sena with the petrol bombs are an NDA ally in the Parliament.
With the Assembly elections approaching in Maharashtra, and BJP's now predictable strategy of inciting communal hostility and leveraging criminals for political profit, how this situation evolves is anyone's guess. Twocircles.net reports:
It was only a week before that the Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chavan was informed by the IB that there were strong chances of eruption of riots in certain cities of Maharashtra owing to the upcoming assembly elections in the state due to which the state government had issued strict orders to the police department to keep vigilance on anti social activities in the state.
According to BBC Hindi, at least 193 Buses in Pune City and around 200 Buses in Kolhapur have been damaged by the angry Shiv Sainiks while protesting against Photo shopped photos of Shivaji uploaded on Facebook.
There are reports that Shiv Sainiks threw petrol bombs along with stones in nearly 11 mosques situated in Pune and nearby areas due to which people in the Mosque were injured. One imam of the mosque was manhandled brutally due to which he was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the hospital where as many students of one of the Madarsa were injured due to throwing of petrol bomb on the Madarsa by Shiv Sainiks. These students have also been admitted to city hospital. Another imam of Mosque in Kandari was beaten up badly by Shiv Sainiks, who is also undergoing treatment in the city hospital.
The areas of Pune which came under the protest of Shiv Sainiks are Landewadi, Bhosari, Nool Mohalla, Panjarpur, Fatema Nagar, Kalewadi, Dande Chauk,Pimpri Gaon, Chinchwad Gaon, Ranjewadi, Kondwa and Vagoli.
Speaking to TwoCircles.net, Maulana Aziz Siddiqui of the Madrassa Darl Uloom Ashrafiya said, “Three students have suffered leg injuries who were briefly admitted to the hospital, but most students have now gone home. But the madrassa has been severely damaged.” He added that situation in Pune is now calm but tense as no one is certain what may happen next. The popular dargah of Hazrat Peer Shah Jalaluddin Shah Qadri which was situated in the same area was also vandalized. Nearly 500 Hindu radicals entered Noor Mohalla of Bhosari area with swords and petrol bombs in their hands and broke doors and windows of Muslim houses.
The prayer hall, ablution area, water tank and around 10 graves in Shahi Qabrastan Trust, Bhosari were vandalized. Five mosques in Hinjewadi area were also damaged. The imam of Aisha Mosque was beaten up brutally who is now recuperating in Inamdar Hospital. Masjid-e-Zainab and Madrassa-e-Shabnam Garib Nawaz were also damaged badly. Three other mosques in the adjacent areas were also desecrated by the rampaging mob.
One of the petrol pumps belonging to a Muslim businessman was totally destroyed. A mosque situated in Talode basti was also damaged. Muslim houses, shops and around 20 bakeries were targeted in Karve road area, Thergaon and Wakad. A group belonging to various Muslim organizations made an emergency visit to the affected areas to assess the overall damages suffered by the community.
The damaged bakeries included Ismail bakery (Karve Nagar),Citizen Bakery (Sinhgarh road), Heena Bakery, Shabnam Bakery, Moti Bakery, Shad Bakery (Dattawadi), Sun Rise Bakery, Indian Bakery (Warje), Welcome Bakery, Sahara Bakery, Patel Bakery (Hadapsar), Supreme Bakery (Malewadi) and Unicon Bakery ( Phirsangi). The visiting group of Muslims estimated the loss of damaged bakeries alone to be more than one crore (ten million) rupees.
While the murder of the "techie" is being painted as outrage of Hindus disturbed by the images, the fact remains that the techie was a victim of a hate crime completely unrelated with the images. He got assaulted mostly for wearing a skull cap and growing a beard. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech or the lack of it. It is nothing to do with objectionable content and political actors making careers out of violence. It has everything to do with a deliberate, political dismissal of the fundamental right to life enshrined in the Constitution of India on the basis of identity. It is hardly an isolated sentiment. We have an MP who openly declared that critics of Modi would have to go to Pakistan without any apology or condemnation by the party in the peak of election campaigning. It is a party that runs by its own rules and has no regard for the Constitution and citizenship of India.
There is no evidence so far that a Muslim had created or circulated those images. This is not my imagination, but the police. The images were put up in a community frequented by Hindus. The images have been uploaded to Facebook from IPs outside India, while inflammatory messages circulated that further incited mobs had been sent from Mumbai. Even as the BJP claims to not be involved in the violence, the wave of fake accounts targeting those who color outside BJP lines has been engaged once more with the clear agenda to divert the issue by comparing it with any and every wrong done by Muslims or perceived to be done by Muslims using its age old formula that Hindu violence will always be legitimate because the past cannot be erased.
It would hardly be the first time the right wingers created outrages for Hindus to fuel communal anger. Be it the Kar Sevaks killed in firing to raise fervor for the Babari Masjid demolition or other dead passengers in the Godhra train tragedy claimed as Kar Sevaks to magnify the "deliberate crime". Given that the publicity of the images happened so rapidly among the Hindutva ranks while leaving others mostly untouched, the possibility that this was a strategy to create riots must also be explored and whoever is guilty regardless of religion be brought to book.
Those seeing insult in obscene images of figures respected by Hindus see nothing wrong with murderous mobs naming themselves as the warriors of the Hindu Rashtra. Apparently, insulting images are worse than murderers when it comes to insult of Hindus. The name of Shivaji is happily being tossed around. I challenge any fan of Shivaji to stand up and tell us when Shivaji assaulted unarmed civilians. Unlike the criminals viliying his name in the name of protecting it, he was not a sadak chaap murderer. I challenge any of the jokers who proudly "avenge" Hindu pride to stand before their parents and say they are following Shivaji when they kill unarmed people. Is this not an insult to Shivaji who struggled against heavy odds to fight mighty armies, yet gave clothes to a young and beautiful MUSLIM widow and saw to her safety? Apparently pointing this out makes the speaker "anti-Hindu" because the new definition of "Hindu" by zealots is "tolerant" people who murder. Anyone remember the Muslim protests in the wake of the Danish cartoon controversy - "Kill those who say Islam is intolerant"? Yes. That. Zealot fascists resemble each other across religions more than those of their own religion.
There are several serious questions that need to be asked about the riots, vandalism and murder in Pune.
How did riots spread so rapidly from images on a community to the streets, including non-standard equipment like petrol bombs? It is hardly likely that members of the community from Pune or those of them who spread the images could result in these numbers. The numbers are a result of a well oiled machinery moving to plan rapidly on receiving a trigger. This, to me indicates an organized spreading of the images so that they reached enough people who would react with anger on the streets.
Several people active on social networks deny seeing the images "spreading" at all. The first they heard of the images was the violence "triggered" by them. Subsequent attempts to see them led to the discovery that they had already been taken offline within hours. How is it that three organizations responded with calls to protest the images within hours of the images being posted and were ready in numbers on the streets well before those active on social networks noticed them - unless this was a coordinated plan?
What was the role of political organizations? How likely is it that three organizations have the exact same reaction to images posted on some obscure community, that almost a week later are still not seen by most people? Again, Twitter is not that trigger happy to block. Where are the images? When is the last time you saw the police blocking something this efficiently? Communications of role holders and local offices of the organizations o the supposed "protests" - BJP, Shiv Sena and Hindu Rashtra Sena - must be investigated for mobilization for organized crime.
The supposed "spread" of the images must be investigated to find out how they exclusively spread among the right wing community th witout being seen by active users of the one place news going viral is instantly noticed - Twitter. Most active profiles on Twitter have not seen the images at all. I fail to understand how this is possible if images spread widely. Clearly, there were specific channels by which it spread as opposed to going viral organically. These channels are unlikely to be Muslim communities, as that wouldn't result in a massive right wing Hindu build up within hours, even if they were inclined to spread them for entertainment - of which there is little evidence in the public space at least. It was organized circulation that led to the propagation of the images among those they would infuriate and regardless of the origin of the images, such propagation is malicious as well.
The organized outrage. The question arises why "protesters" not only got outraged, but got violent, damaged property and arrived to protest "armed" with hockey sticks and petrol bombs instead of placards. To me, this indicates a right wing agenda to create unrest in Maharashtra, specifically, and the organizers of the protests as well as key leaders must be investigated to ascertain the agenda. These are political statements of supremacy and domination and them being made in places not ruled by BJP and heading for elections also indicates a motive to discredit the governments.
It is up to us as a country to decide whether we are willing for our safety to be slaughtered on the altar of deliberate violence, counter violence and more to make communal and political statements to profit fascists at the cost of bystanders.