Forgetting Minorities Rights Day is NOT Good Governance

By Shah Ahmed,,

Ever since Narendra Modi took over as the Prime Minister of India, the right wing groups including the RSS and those affiliated with the RSS are ruling the roost…not a single day goes by without a provocative statement from the RSS, VHP, Bajrang Dal and other right wing fringe groups that threatens the secular fabric of the country.

Isolating Moscow will not help India or the West

By Amit Dasgupta,

By all accounts, the Russian economy is in imminent danger of collapse. After a period of relative economic stability under President Vladimir Putin, the rouble is now in free-fall. The central bank has announced an increase in interest rates from 10.5 percent to 17 percent. It failed to stabilize the rouble. This has reduced the purchasing power and seriously affected ordinary Russians, as the bulk of food and consumer goods are imported.

Hindutva diminishing India’s official ideology

By Mohammed Naseeruddin,

The Constitution declares India to be a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic. Hence secularism is an essential part of our “official Ideology”.

The secular or communal political parties, whoever is in power, are constitutionally bound to follow this dictum. But for the past six months, it has been noticed that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the parent organization of ruling Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) dictates its own agenda to diminish our ‘Official Ideology’ that relies on participative democracy and religious neutrality.

Fascist war against humanity

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat,

The slaughtering of over 140 children by the Pakistani Taliban is a grim reminder of how religious rights have no faith in democracy and its order. That they can kill anyone at their own will and the authorities are left to react once they have done their ‘duty’ shows how powerful have they become so far. Further, this reflects that the war on terror has failed on all counts. Just a day before this incident, we saw the infamous Sydney siege where a gunman kept hostage to so many visitors of the café keeping the authorities guessing his motives and resulting in killings of a few of the hostages. The killing spree of the gangs and thugs in the name of religion continues world-over and it is a matter of great concern as at the end of the day as it is the common person who is becoming the victim of their hate mission.

Sultanpur Lodhi: the site where Guru Nanak attained enlightenment

This is first part of a two-part Travelogue. Read here Part Two Sultanpur Lodhi: the site where Guru Nanak attained enlightenment

By Jaspal Singh,

It has been an amazing day. For years I have been planning to go to Sultanpur Lodhi, where Guru Nanak lived for 15 years and where, as the legend goes, he achieved enlightenment and felt the need to travel and inform himself, learn and teach.

How is Ghar Vapasi Different from Forcible Conversions?

By Ram Puniyani,

Propaganda around conversions has been one of the major political tools during last few decades. It was Niyogi Commission report which investigated the conversions in Adivasi areas in 1950s, then the Meenaxipuram conversions of Dalits into Islam, the and then the gruesome murder of Pastor Graham Stewart Stains on the charges that he was doing the conversion; are few amongst the big spectrum related to the phenomenon of conversions. As such the regular propaganda by communal forces that Muslim Kings converted people into Islam by sword has been made the part of ‘social common sense’ by now. On regular basis around Christmas time one saw the anti Christian violence in Adivasi areas a decade ago, and in that context rather than focusing on the violence against religious minorities, the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee called for a National debate on Conversions.

Can Modi really take on the Hindu hawks?

By Amulya Ganguli ,

The sudden cancellation by the saffron hotheads of the religious reconversion programmes to welcome the minorities into the Hindu fold suggests that Narendra Modi has finally decided that enough is enough.

India says sanctions against terrorists ineffective; Pakistan vows to go for their 'jugular'

By Arul Louis,

United Nations: The killing fields of Peshawar inspired anew an international resolve at the Security Council to combat terrorism by adopting Friday a resolution urging nations to choke the flow of resources to the extremist organisations and to increase cooperation to fight them, even as India criticised the ineffectiveness of sanctions against them.

Peshawar school song: Where have all the flowers gone?

By Saeed Naqvi,

Ever since US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage threatened to bomb Pakistan to the stone age unless it joined the post 9/11 global war on terror, Pakistan has faced an existential tragedy of choice. It was being called upon to kill the very mujahideen it had trained to become hardened Islamic fighters, also at America’s behest, to help expel the Soviet Union from Afghanistan.

Distancing the Dalai Lama: Is Vatican playing into Beijing's hands?

By Amit Dasgupta,

Nobel laureates gathered in Rome last week were dismayed that Pope Francis had surprisingly refused to grant an audience to the Dalai Lama so as to not incur Beijing's inevitable wrath. Earlier the meeting was to be held in Cape Town to commemorate the first death anniversary of Nelson Mandela.