Category: Politics

April 12, 2016 /

In fact, one of the failures of politics within the ‘University of Ideas’ has been its inability, while pointing out the horrors of Indian nationalism in Kashmir, to demonstrate the problems of nationalism within the so-called mainland.

April 11, 2016 /

I would contend that it is because of the legitimization of hierarchy by various canonical Islamic texts that the Muslims who arrived in India (Arabs, Afghans, Mongols, Turks, Persians, etc.) were not in the least bit surprised by caste: they were only too familiar with the hierarchies they found here. Rather, it could be argued, that they skilfully adapted to the caste order and even Islamized it.

April 8, 2016 /

As the philosopher Walter Benjamin noted, in a context not entirely dissimilar to one we are living through, “even the dead will not be safe from the enemy if he wins.” Rest assured, the casteist Hindu Right and the merit-wielding technocrats will not care whether the dead came draped in red or blue.

April 7, 2016 /

On the eve of 2016 Assembly elections, with utmost urgency and anxiety we want to present some issues before you. The Assembly Elections 2016 run the risk of ruining the age-old communal harmony and brotherhood of Assam and divide people along communal lines. BJP’s failure to get a stronghold in Assam, which is home to multiple ethnic groups have instigated its mother organization, RSS, to incite communal conflicts among various groups.

March 28, 2016 /

The fear of criticism breaking solidarity is an enveloped fear; well cushioned in caste hierarchies and privileges. It is an arm chair fear, resulting from the fear of doing the boring but radical work of patiently explaining, convincing and converging.

March 26, 2016 /

I reached the protest site after the initial violence had taken place. Large number of students were staging a protest inside the premises of VC’s guesthouse.The students demanded the sacking of VC Appa Rao for his involvement in the institutional murder of Rohit Vemula. Earlier that morning Appa Rao resumed the post after ensuring support from the state and ABVP.The students were provoked by ABVP students who were already stationed in support of the VC because of which violence escalated and chaos prevailed.

March 25, 2016 /

The Gospel of love reinforces the idea of Justice. Love demands justice, whereas the high priests, Pharisees, Sadducees and the scribes in connivance with the Roman rulers were known for their acts of exploitation and discrimination against the poor.

March 23, 2016 /

It is a matter of debate whether my lack of belief in the existence of an Omnipresent, Omniscient God is due to my arrogant pride and vanity. It never occurred to me that sometime in the future I would be involved in polemics of this kind.

February 5, 2016 /

Among all categories of workers in the globalised world economy, migrants have negligible or most limited capacity to exercise power to prevent or resist the multiplicity of oppression and exploitation. The underlying assumption is that owing to their vulnerability, social oppression and powerlessness, they cannot self-organize and hence, there is a need for trade unions of the host countries to organize them.

February 4, 2016 /

Before HIV funding oiled and co-opted “queer”, before it re-created and held in place caste hierarchies – Indian collective queer spaces were found in hamams, and bastis, and parks. It was found in villages where the only visible queer was the local (Dalitbahujan) transfemme community. She was the one that poor, Dalitbahujan queer femmes and trans men sought out and befriended and asked for help. Before the globalized repeal IPC-377 campaign cemented the meaning of what queer caste neutrality looks like – it was queer Dalitbahujans who were being beaten, tortured, raped and killed by the police, by the public and the state. While the sexuality rights consultancies and speaking engagements went to Savarna queers, it was Dalitbahujans who arrived in masses and protested police stations and courtrooms, and were lathi-charged, beaten and arrested.

February 2, 2016 /

Former Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis argues that the nation-state is dead and democracy in the EU has been replaced by a toxic algorithmic depoliticisation that, if it is not confronted, will lead to depression, disintegration and possibly war. He calls for a launch of a pan-European movement to democratise Europe, to save it before it is too late.

January 31, 2016 /

I remember hearing you speak after your release from prison after more than nine years. Keeping aside the mental and physical torture, those years gifted you solitude, within the cocoons of which you could read and write quite a lot, you had said. Yes, solitude is indeed the most cherished thing for a reader.

January 28, 2016 /

Generations of Kashmiris have already answered the rhetorical question, “Hum kya chahte?” (What do we want?) with “Azadi”—freedom from India. If there is to be any possibility of reconciliation, it cannot be answered with another question: “What about Kashmiri Pandits?” This latter question can be—should be—part of the answer to another question, “Azadi ka matlab kya?” (What does azadi entail?) But for that to happen, the first question must be heard, and answered.

January 26, 2016 /

On India’s Republic Day, just 5 days away from the Gawkadal massacre, we shall hear Jumlas from Narendra Modi. We shall hear his rhetorical and controvertible claims on how India is rapidly evolving as a major superpower in the world and a worthy contender for a permanent place in the Security Council. Nobody expects him to speak against his party ideologues who lynched Mohammad Akhlaq or abetted the suicide of Dalit student Rohit Vemula.

January 23, 2016 /

Who is a dalit?

Members of scheduled castes and tribes, Neo-Buddhists, the working people, the landless and poor peasants, women and all those who are being exploited politically, economically and in the name of religion.

January 22, 2016 /

We have been looking at anger as an antithesis to peace for far too long. Non-violence has been understood as the most acceptable means to peace and peace has been in turn construed as absence of conflict.

January 20, 2016 /

Rohith Vemula’s ‘suicide’ is not the desperate reaction of a despairing victim to casteist atrocities. For the same reason, and contrary to what many might imagine, Vemula’s ‘suicide’ has nothing to do with anomie-bred existential nihilism. Rather, it is an act of revolutionary affirmation

January 20, 2016 /

A whole population that challenges the Indian rule is identified as an enemy that can be dealt with only through exceeding violence. On the ground, a cobweb of military installations and camps acts as an instrument for the military to identify, persecute, and maintain a hold on the local population. In Kashmiri rural areas, one finds an army camp after every three kilometers and in some places, the pervasion is even deeper.

January 18, 2016 /

For those who are using Rohith’s letter to simplistically assert that he died due to “personal problems,” sit up and open your eyes, ears, and mind to what is being said and what is not being said in this letter. Read between the lines, in the loops of his “y”s and “g”s and in the indented spaces separating his neat paragraphs.

January 17, 2016 /

The value of a man was reduced to his immediate identity and nearest possibility. To a vote. To a number. To a thing. Never was a man treated as a mind. As a glorious thing made up of star dust. In very field, in studies, in streets, in politics, and in dying and living.

January 17, 2016 /

It is a well known fact that people have been threatened of being kicked out of the balang if they were to take part in festivals of other groups. The word ‘blei thaw’ is quite familiar to us with the degrading connotation it carries. So we already have people in our state who have developed their own version of the ideology of ‘incompatibility of differences’; given the right motivation they could very soon take the next step, i.e., violence (not in thought but in actual deed)

January 15, 2016 /

I grew up in Shillong in the 1970s.
My sister went to Loreto, me to Pine Mount, and in that insular world of ours all that mattered was the grades we got in school and the prizes I won for the (mostly Bengali) songs I sang at Ananda Sammelan.
Then we left.
Then we chose to leave.
Then we had to leave.

January 14, 2016 /

It is now only a matter of months until the Rio Olympics, an event inevitably wrapped up in the glamour of that most festive of world cities. The reality, however, is rather less glossy. Indeed, behind the fanfare, some of the city’s poorest people, many living in Rio’s notorious favelas, are being uprooted to make way for the games.

January 11, 2016 /

There has to be a systematic overhaul of public health delivery system in Meghalaya with health rights at the core of such a structural change. Accountability and transparency is an important structural change that requires immediate attention if the health sector is to improved.

December 28, 2015 /

Security personals sexually harassed and assaulted more that 40 women and gang-raped at least two during an anti-Maoists operation in the villages of Pegdapalli, Chinnagellur, Peddagellur, Burgicheru, and Gundam in Bijapur, South Chhattisgarh between October 20 and October 24, 2015.