Sunday, 13 August 2017

India-Pakistan-Bangladesh Relations



The Kashmir Problem: Kashmir is not a problem at all; it is the symptom of a problem. The main problem is the mistrust between the estranged brothers. These brothers were estranged by the division of India by power hungry politicians. If the mistrust between the estranged brothers is solved, then Kashmir will find its own solution.

Indian Sub-continent has developed a mixed culture
The Sanatan Dharma, popularly known as the Hindu religion, naturally developed in the Indian sub-continent and its surrounding countries over thousands of years. The Adivasis of India are still maintaining their own cultures and their cultures are older than Hindu cultures; but a lot of exchanges have taken place. Many outsiders came over long periods of time, conquered some parts, settled down here and got mixed. The Jews also came to India and settled here. The Orthodox Christian missionaries arrived in the southern parts of India within 100 years of resurrection of Christ and started preaching. Islamic preachers came to India many years before Islam came here as a political force in the beginning of the eighth century, and were allowed by Hindu kings to preach. This is how the subcontinent developed a mixed culture over many centuries. 
Khawaja Moinuddin Chishti is revered by both the Hindus and the Muslims in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Kabir had both Hindu and Muslim followers. The Baul singers of Bengal belong to both the Hindus and the Muslims as well.
Many Muslims are experts in “Sastriya Sangeet”. Some of them start their programs by performing “Swaraswati Vandana”. The great monk Swami Vivekananda proclaimed: “India will prosper only when an Indian will have a Muslim brawn, a Hindu head and a Christian heart”. 
The great poet Iqbal sang: “Hindustan is the best country in the world”. The great poet Kazi Nazrul Islam sang: “We the Hindus and the Muslims are two flowers in the same stalk; the Muslims are the eyes of the nation and the Hindus are the soul. As the Sun and the Moon play on the lap of the mother sky, we Hindus and Muslims also play on the lap of mother India; we have the same blood in our veins and we have the same umbilical chord”.
Syed Muztaba Ali was a great Bengali litterateur, a scholar in several classical languages, a widely travelled man and he taught in several foreign and Indian universities. In one of the books he wrote: “The inhabitants of North West Frontier Province and Eastern Afghanistan are the most civilized people in the world”.
The politicians and religious bigots have turned these wonderful places into killing fields.
“Madhuban mein Radhika nache re” was composed by Naushad, the lyricist was Shakeel Badauni, it was sung by Mohammad Rafi and the lips were given by Dilip Kumar (Muhammad Yusuf Khan). What a beautifully woven multi-cultural fabric! But power hungry politicians and religious obscurantists have turned the Indian sub-continent into a killing field.

Urdu is an Indian language
Urdu originated in North India and spread to other places. My senior colleague Mukherjee-da a Bengali Hindu was born and brought up in pre-partition Lahore. His father was a science teacher in a Lahore college. Mukherjee could read, write and speak Bengali with proper Bengali accent. He could also read, write and speak Urdu with proper accent. He told me: “We Bengalis think that Bengali is the sweetest of all the languages in the world; but being a Bengali myself I am of the opinion that Urdu is much sweeter than Bengali”. I was very surprised. 
Ghazal devolved out of Urdu and it is enjoyed in both India and Pakistan. This cultural link shall have to be strengthened. Before partition both the Hindus and the Muslims of North India felt a strong affinity towards Urdu and many Hindus considered Urdu as their mother tongue. But after the blood letting partition, a chasm has developed in this affinity. This chasm can be bridged by increasing the frequency of Ghazal performances by artists of both countries performing both in India and Pakistan.

Terrorism across India Pakistan border
States must not sponsor cross-border terrorism; it backfires and seriously hurts the sponsoring country. It is indeed grievously hurting the sponsoring country. Still the sponsoring is continuing unabated due to narrow shortsighted political strategy.
India, Pakistan and Bangladesh shall have to learn to be good neighbours for their mutual benefits. I very much hope that the younger generations of these countries will take the lead and normalize the relations. Cultural, educational, commercial and industrial cooperation will benefit all of these neighbours.

Floods and draughts in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
These occur annually in these countries and cause devastations. These can be controlled by connecting rivers in these countries through canals, construction of reservoirs and rain water harvesting. Water is a very scares resource. Joint river commissions compromising experts from these countries ought to conduct joint river surveys during summer, monsoon and winter and devise water sharing mechanisms for their mutual benefits. For sharing the Brahmaputra water, China has to be involved. To achieve this, state sponsored terrorism shall have to be stopped.
Indus river water treaty between India and Pakistan has survived several wars between them. This is a beacon of hope in an otherwise very ominous environment. I very much hope that the younger generations will establish good relations between them for their mutual benefits.

Religious intolerances and obscurantisms in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
These are very serious problems in these countries. These problems are also seriously affecting the Middle East, parts of Africa, China, Europe and other regions of the world. 
“Dharma” in Sanskrit means the rules that maintain law and order in the society. During the cave age, there were few rules because cave age people did not have evolved social interactions. As the human brain developed in the course of thousands of years, wise persons among them devised certain rules to control individual lives and maintain order in the society. These rules grew into formal religions in course of time. All sane persons know about it. As the formal religions became rigid, they created havocs and led to killings of human beings by fellow human beings all in the name of the Creator. What a heinous crime to commit in the name of the Creator. This heinous crime is still being committed in the modern Internet age. Does it not strike your minds as absolutely nonsense?
The persecutions of religious minorities are still going on in the Indian sub-continent. In one country, the religious minorities have almost been cleansed, even a sect of Muslims have almost been finished. In another, the cleansing is going on. In India, all politicians are vote hunters on religious lines and create communal disharmony. Some parts of China are very much disturbed due to religious obscurantists. I very much hope that the persecutions of religious, linguistic and cultural minorities all over the world will be stopped one day by the younger generations.
Some of my Pakistani friends think that if the Indian part of Kashmir becomes a part of Pakistan, all problems between India and Pakistan will be solved. I think they are wrong and re-dividing the Indian subcontinent based on religious demography will only pander to the religious sectarianism and will further diminish the scope of secular principles in India. There are about 200 million fellow Muslim citizens in India and it risks undermining them if the narrow logic of religious partition is brought forth again.
Why are the Pathans, Balochs and Sindhis agitating in Pakistan? Why was Bangladesh carved out of Pakistan by sacrificing three million lives? Why are Arabs fighting among themselves? If all people in the world become only Muslims or only Christians or only Buddhists or only Hindus, will peace prevail in the world?
It is in Pakistan’s interest that India does not get further disintegrated; because, if India disintegrates, it will create a domino and disintegrate Pakistan too and the Indian subcontinent will become a towering inferno.
If religious obscurantism and cross border terrorism are not stopped, the Indian subcontinent and parts of China may end up in a nuclear disaster. Religious obscurantism may destroy the Human civilization.
Human knowledge has progressed from Cave Age to Internet Age and is progressing further; but religious beliefs are still mired in myths. It is very easy to whip up emotions on religious lines. Power hungry politicians are utilizing these for their hunts for power and the clergy will not allow people to think freely, because they don’t want to lose their stranglehold on society.

Muslims are an integral part of the Indian subcontinent
The Arabs, then idol worshippers, have been coming to India for trading since ancient times. They came as a political force in the beginning of the 8th century AD; since then Muslims have been coming to India and settled all over India. Hindu Muslim interactions helped to develop a mixed culture.
I consider myself to be a Hindu, a Jew, a Buddhist, a Christian, a Muslim etc. at the same time. 
Although overwhelming majority of soldiers and leaders of the 1857 revolution were Hindus, they declared Bahadur Shah Zajar as the Emperor of India. It is a sad fact that highly qualified though extremely nefarious politicians divided India after a prolonged carnage in 1947 and since then the estranged brothers have been fighting among themselves.
In the Second World War, about 6 million Jews were murdered. They were usually murdered in Concentration Camps by the Nazis. The Nazis were an organized force; so they kept the records of the killings. 
In the Indian subcontinent, mass killings were started by goons in 1946 when India was still under the British rule. During this time, neighbours raped neighbours, neighbours mutilated the limbs before murdering neighbours. It is reported that about half a million people were killed due to partition; but this is very much an underestimated figure. This carnage was usually locally organized; so no records were kept. The casualty was definitely more heavy, because India was more populous than Germany and its surrounding countries. Moreover, in the Second World war it was only the Nazis that exterminated the Jews, whereas during the partition of India, both Hindus and Muslims were engaged in killing one another. This mass killing is the bloodiest blot on human civilization in peace time.
When the Jews were being exterminated, the Second World War was going on; but in India when neighbours started exterminating neighbours, no war was going on; this extermination took place in peace time.
The Nazis transported the Jews to concentration camps and subjected them to firing squads or put them in gas chambers. The bodies of living Jews were not mutilated. But in the Indian subcontinent neighbours chopped off their neighbours’ limbs before murdering them. Such barbarities were not committed by the Nazis. The barbarities committed by the goons before, during and after partition in the Indian subcontinent far exceeded the barbarities committed by the Nazis on the Jews. The barbarities committed by the Nazis are still being remembered by the world with horror; but the barbarities committed in the Indian subcontinent have been forgotten by the world and even by the people of the Indian subcontinent.
In today’s Indian subcontinent, we celebrate the birthdays of the very persons who divided India after a genocide to satisfy their hunger for power. What a queer mentality we have!
My father, a freedom fighter, was firmly of the opinion that the genocide before, during and after partition could have been avoided or minimized had the leaders were not so hungry for power. Whenever I am in a vacant mood and think about the genocide, I seem to hear the cries for help and the wailing of hapless people being butchered, and I feel an excruciating pain in my heart.

Conclusion
1 to 9 and 0 were invented in ancient India. The Arabs learnt these from India and spread these to Europe. Scholars in ancient India conceived that all objects in the Universe were composed of extremely small particles called “Paramanu”. Astronomers in ancient India postulated that the Earth moves round the Sun. So, the Indian subcontinent has a tradition of knowledge and learning. 
Population of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is now more than 1.6 billion. This vast population’s contribution to modern science is very insignificant. Only five persons originating in this subcontinent have been awarded the Nobel Prizes in Science subjects so far. Out of the five Nobel laureates, only Prof. C. V. Raman was an Indian citizen, two were American citizens, one was a British citizen and the surviving one is an American citizen when they were awarded the Nobel Prizes.
“Veda” means knowledge. In the holy Quran the most repeated word is that of the all Merciful Allah; the second most repeated word is “Ilm” or knowledge.
How many gold medals does this vast population get at each Olympic? Do these facts not cross your minds? You are so engrossed in committing hara-kiri among yourselves that you have no time to think about these hard facts. 
My appeal to the younger generations of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is please discard the old baggage, discard the myths present in all religions, think yourselves as human beings, come forward to solve all the problems facing India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, so that ordinary people, mostly poor, of this subcontinent can live with dignity and as good neighbours. 
Hail the subcontinent; Hail Mankind!

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Some suggestions on how to increase harmony among all religions in India

I am very apprehensive that the obscurantists of all religions are bent on destroying the earth in the name of religions.
I have used the word “earth” (and not the “world”) intentionally; because according to our present knowledge, our earth is the only planet in the universe known to support life. There is a theory that it is not a universe, but there are multi-verses.  It amazes me when I think of the complexities and the innovative power of the human mind.
  • Whoever created the universe, or the multi-verses as the case may be, must have created all human beings; but the different religious communities address the same Creator by different names.
  • The Jews, the Christians and the Muslims believe that the Creator doesn’t have any form. The Hindus also believe that the Creator doesn’t have any form; however an ordinary person cannot think of the Creator without any form; so for the convenience of ordinary persons different forms of the Creator have been imagined.
  • On Mahalaya Day , All Souls Day, Sab-e-Barat Day, the Hindus, the Christians and the Muslims respectively remember their ancestors. This shows the similarities among different religions. Such similarities have to be highlighted.
  • The Prophets of all religions ought to be respected by all, because they are the messengers of the same Creator.
  • The gist of all religions shall have to be taught in our schools, so that the students can realize that all religions talk about the same Creator.
  • Many Hindus in India celebrate Christmas by lighting up their homes and feasting. All Hindus, Buddhists and the Muslims should be encouraged to light up their homes during Christmas and exchange greetings.
  • The Buddhists, Christians and the Muslims should be encouraged to light up their homes during Deepavali and exchange greetings.
  • The Hindus, Christians and the Muslims should be encouraged to light up their homes during Buddha-Purnima and exchange greetings.
  • The Hindus, Buddhists and the Christians should be encouraged to light up their homes during Eid and exchange greetings.
  • Although I have mentioned only about the Hindus, Buddhists, Christians and the Muslims, the main festivals of all religions ought to be celebrated by the followers of all religions.
  • As the Creator is the same, we are all brothers and sisters created by the same Creator. So, how can we kill one another in the name of the Creator?
  • Inter-religious marriages should be encouraged without having to undergo religious conversions. As an example, when a Hindu person marries a Muslim, the persons may not change their religions. These marriages may be solemnized by observing both the Hindu and the Muslim customs. The children of such marriages may declare their respective religious faiths after attaining adulthood; some may declare themselves agnostic.
  • If the above suggestions are followed, the differences among different religious communities will get blurred after a few generations and we will unite for the survival of mankind on our earth.
  • The non-believers shall have every right to express their opinions freely.


The Big Bang theory of Creation
Scientists postulate that the whole universe was created due to a Big Bang that occurred 13-15 billion years ago. A mini Big Bang experiment was conducted by CERN deep under the ground in 2012. So, the Big Bang is an experimentally proven fact.
But the scientists also postulate that all matters were present when the Big Bang occurred. Why should all matters be present just before the Big Bang occurred and what was it like before the Big Bang? The present day scientists cannot explain this phenomenon. Maybe, the scientists will be able to explain this phenomenon more completely in the future. Till then we, those who are believers, are entitled to believe that there is a Creator.


The Cave Men and Women
It is a historical fact that initially all men and women lived in caves. They gradually learned to speak due to natural evolution; learnt cultivation and settled down in different parts of the earth. They learnt to write many centuries (maybe thousands of years) after they started speaking. The Vedic people did not know how to write; the Vedas were written many centuries after they were composed.
The Cave men could not speak in the beginning, because their brains were not properly developed. The human brain gradually developed due to natural evolution. When the Human brains developed sufficiently they started thinking about the creation of the universe. They learnt how to light up a fire; it protected them from cold weather and wild animals; so they started worshipping fire. They realized that Sun rays sustain life; so they started worshipping the Sun. This is how the human civilization developed over thousands of years. All great preachers of all religions started thinking and preaching at the ages when their brains were sufficiently developed.
These are scientific and historical facts. Can we, whatever may be our religious beliefs, deny these facts?
Discrimination Against Women
All religions discriminate against women. Why? Are the women not created by the same Creator? Why there are no women heads in different religions?
There are some women heads in some Hindu sects; but they all are heads of Hindu sects having local influences only.
Why there are no women priests in any religion? I understand that some organizations in West Bengal are training women to perform Durga Puja. Some women may have already started performing Durga Puja as well; but these are only taking place locally.
All religious men strive to do good things believing that these will help them to enjoy good things in the heaven and may even help them to have company of beautiful women there. Can good things not be done without expecting any returns?
If religious men can aspire to enjoy the company of beautiful women in the heaven, then can religious women aspire to enjoy the company of handsome men in the heaven?
All religions believe that the Creator is a man. Why can’t the Creator be a woman?
To My Dear Muslim Friends
Our dear Muslim friends and co-citizens are the second largest majority community in India. In fact the Muslims are the second largest majority community in the world after the Christians. So, they are not a minority community in India at all.
Our dear Parsi friends are indeed a minority community in India. I understand that there are only about 70 thousand Parsis in India. Those who migrated to Europe from Persia have lost their identities. But those who came to India are able to maintain their identities. It amazes me when I think of their enormous contributions to industry, higher education and research and health services in India. I have never heard of any movement by Parsis fighting for their rights; because most of them are highly educated. So, lack of proper education is the real cause of the backwardness of a community and not their numbers. All communities in India, including our Muslim friends, shall have to try to emulate our wonderful Parsi friends.
I understand that their numbers are gradually dwindling while the numbers of other communities are alarmingly burgeoning. I feel very apprehensive about the very survival of our Parsi co-citizens. The Central government and our Parsi friends shall have to take some immediate corrective steps.
Within a century of the demise of the Last Prophet, the Arabs went right up to the south of France. They established the first university in Europe in Spain at Cordova in the tenth century when Haroon-al-Rasheed was the Khalifa, the Muslim civilization was at its zenith. During the golden period of Muslim civilization Omar Khayyam composed his Rubaiyyat. Ilm (i.e. knowledge) is the most repeated word after the all Merciful Allah in the Holy Quran. All my educated Muslim friends know it. Then, why are infernos raging in the Middle East, Pakistan and also in some parts of India? Does not this burning question cross your minds? With due respect to you, I dare to suggest that these infernos are due to lack of Ilm.
Lack of Ilm is causing intolerances among different religious communities all over the world and may ultimately destroy the mankind. So, let all of us try to learn Ilm. All holy books of all religions shall have to be interpreted in the true spirit of the word with Ilm. This will help the development of the human civilization further.


Madrasa Education
I don’t know the syllabus of the Madrasa system. In each Madrasa, facilities must be present to teach English to all students and facilities must also be there to teach Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Accountancy, Economics etc. to those students who want to learn these subjects, so that the students passing out of Madrasas can pursue higher studies in these subjects to enable them to be gainfully employed. If the futures of these children, they are all my grandchildren, are bleak, then the future of the nation will be very bleak indeed.


Teachings of Classical Languages
All classical languages are very rich in literature. So, all classical languages ought to be studied for the proper understanding of civilization. Let Hindu and Christian scholars teach Arabic and the Holy Quran in Muslim institutions. Similarly, the Christian and Muslim scholars ought to teach Sanskrit and the Vedas and Upanishads in the Hindu institutions. The Hindu and Muslim scholars ought to teach Hebrew, Greek, Latin and the Bible in Jewish and Christian institutions. This will help to integrate different religious communities.    


Can the same religious affinity unite all followers of that particular religion?


Hindu religion
It is mainly confined to India and its neighboring countries only. Few lakhs are present in some South East Asian countries although many centuries ago they were the majority community in these places. Recently a few millions have migrated to Australia, New Zealand and some Western countries. Even the Hindus confined in India are divided into many castes, sub-castes, Dalits, Maha-dalits etc. Sometimes, the upper and lower castes resort to killing one another. Honour killings are also sometimes taking place. Dowry deaths are reported as well. These are heinous crimes against humanity. These are many other bad things that the Hindus practise even today.


Christian religion
It is divided between the Catholics and the Protestants. There were 2 popes, all Catholics, engaged in fighting with each other for about 39 years, resulting in the loss of human lives (Inquisition was a heinous crime on humanity). The Protestants are also divided into several streams. The killings between the Catholics and the Protestants in Northern Ireland went on for more than a decade.  European countries had been engaged in fighting among themselves for centuries up to the end of the Second World War, although all of them are whites and mainly Catholics.
I understand that the White and the Black churches run parallel in USA. The recent invention by the Indian Christians of the term “Dalit Christians” does not glorify Christianity at all; it is an insult to Christianity.


Islam
It is divided between the Sunnis and the Shias. They are engaged in killing one another in the Middle East and in a neigbouring country. The Sunnis are also divided into several streams. They also kill one another at any pretext. Communal infernos have engulfed almost the whole of the Middle East consuming human lives. These things are going on unabated for several years. One neighboring country of India is very much disturbed with communal killings. Sometimes, people praying inside the mosques are also being killed. Honour killings are also sometimes reported. Another neighboring country of India is simmering with fire; this simmering fire is consuming human lives quite often. If this is not checked in time, it will erupt like a volcano.
Are the Black African Muslims, the Indian and the Bangladeshi Muslims treated as honourable members of the Muslim brotherhood fraternity while working in the Middle Eastern countries? Are the Arab Muslims united? The recent invention of the term “Dalit Muslims” by the Indian Muslims does not glorify Islam; it is an insult to Islam


Situations in India
Islam had come to India several centuries before it came as a political force. Mosques were allowed to be set up and preachings started. This peaceful coexistence continued for several centuries. The conflicts started when it came as a conquering force. Akbar tried to unite the Hindus and the Muslims; but Aurangzeb increased the chasm. The 1857 revolution united the Hindus and Muslims temporarily. Our political leaders supported the Khilafat movement for a short term gain and that was the beginning of mixing of politics with religion in modern India. This led to the partition of India in 1947 and caused the genocide before and after partition.
Had the Creator of Pakistan and the first prime minister of India succeeded in their ICS examinations, India would not have been divided and the subsequent carnage would not have taken place at all.
When the Hindu code bill was introduced in the Parliament towards the end of the 1940s/beginning of 1950s, some Muslim scholars of Lucknow and Varanasi wrote to the first Prime Minister of India urging him to bring a Uniform Civil code for all Indians, irrespective of religious affiliations, as suggested by the Indian constitution. Although our first Prime Minister was one of the panel members who composed the Indian constitution, he did not pay any heed to the urgings by the Muslims scholars and this was the beginning of the practice of vote bank politics in independent India. This has led to the present very serious situations in India with religious obscurantists of all religions thriving all over India. If all political parties do not unite to stop this menace, India will start burning like Pakistan and Bangladesh and ultimately leading to the destruction of the Indian subcontinent and a very large part of the world.
Had Japan not bombed Pearl Harbour, USA might not have joined the Second World War with full might. Then Azad Hind Fauz would have been able to end the British rule in India and Netaji would have become the Prime Minister of independent India and the division of India could have been avoided; because the Hindus, the Muslims, the Christians and all other Indians used to believe, respect and love Netaji; he never indulged in politicking. This would have prevented the genocide before and after partition and prevented the creations of two countries fighting forever.
The heinous crime of killing human beings by human beings will be stopped if the points suggested by me in the beginning of this blog, are seriously considered by all human beings cutting across all religious barriers. I am fervently praying that by the grace of the Creator common sense will dawn on all human beings so that they stop killing one another to save the mankind, - by far the best of all the creations by the Creator.


Religious Conversions
All religions are different expressions of the same truth. All religions talk about the same Creator. So, where is the need for conversions?
Originally there was no caste system in the Hindu religion; the caste system gradually developed over a very long period of time. In the beginning it was very flexible; a non-Brahmin could become a Brahmin when he acquired sufficient knowledge. As the Hindu religion started decaying, all sorts of bad practices crept in. The caste system is a heinous crime on humanity. The reforms started in the eighteenth century; still a lot of horrible practices are being practised even today.
The terms “Dalit Christians” and “Dalit Muslims” have recently been introduced in India. I understand that there are no caste systems in the Christian religion and in Islam; so, how can there be any “Dalit Christians” and “Dalit Muslims”.
The Dalit Hindus who were converted to Christianity and Islam are being termed and treated as well as “Dalit Christians” and “Dalit Muslims”. What a mockery of religions! Some of the Dalit Hindus might have converted themselves to other religions sincerely believing that their social statuses would go up in these religions. Most of them were lured or forced into conversions, and all of them have been deceived; otherwise how can the terms “Dalit Christians” and “Dalit Muslims” exist? The terms “Dalit Christians” and “Dalit Muslims” are slurs on true Christianity and true Islam. These  terms are results of the heinous crime of vote bank politics. The practice of vote bank politics divided India and this heinous practice is going to totally disintegrate India whatever is left after partition.
The Creator created the human beings with the same religion i.e. human religion. We the human beings have interpreted the human religion differently to suit our own conveniences.
Religious conversions are total negations of all religions; so religious conversions are totally immoral. All immoral things are heinous in nature. So, how can a really religious person commit an immoral act and a heinous crime? All immoral and heinous acts shall have to be condemned and totally discouraged. I sincerely hope that all these common senses will dawn in the minds of all my dear religious preachers of all religions.
Religious conversions are the root causes of intolerances among human beings; these caused untold sufferings  to the mankind in the past, destroyed the cultures and civilizations of many ethnic people all over the world and are leading to the extinction of mankind.
Every religion has many myths. Many highly educated persons of every religion believe in these myths. These very persons sneer at the myths of other religions and are engaged in converting them into their religions replete with many myths in the garb of civilizing them.  What a silly and obnoxious thing to do, and this is causing chasms in society.
I was born in a Hindu family; I could have been born in a Muslim, a Christian or any other religious family and in any other country as well. Hindu religion has many myths; so how can I sneer at the myths in other religions?
Very old civilizations and ethnic communities in USA and South America have been destroyed. Many of the Adivasis in India have lost their cultural identities due to conversions. The Creator created human beings and the human beings created their own cultures depending on the parts of the earth where they grew up. So, why should one religious group destroy some other religious group’s beliefs, myths and cultures? The Creator does not want it; the Creator wants different religious groups to flourish with their beliefs and cultures; that is why the Creator created the different groups; otherwise the Creator would not have created such communities at all. I want all religious communities, including our Adivasi communities, to blossom undisturbed by others and live with mutual respect and dignity. Left to their own, the Hindus, the Muslims, the Christians, the Buddhists and all other religious communities in India, and in fact all over the world, will live peacefully with their neighbours with the dictum “love thy neighbor”.
The bigots, who are in a hurry to go to their respective heavens (swarg, behest, heaven etc.) are creating unrests and religious infernos in the Indian subcontinent and in other parts of the world destroying thousands of years old wonderful creations of civilizations. Some of the bigots are quite educated, but all of them are being controlled by power hungry politicians and clergy from behind. Without active or passive support by political parties, no religious bigots or terrorists can survive in the Indian subcontinent or anywhere in the world.
I consider myself to be a Hindu, a Muslim, a Christian, a Buddhist etc. at the same time. I have been thinking like this since my college days. I feel the Creator has always encouraged me to think like this. I do believe in the Creator, I do believe in human religion and I don’t believe in any other religion.
A non-believer has every right to live with dignity, because a non-believer has also been created by the same Creator who created a believer.
With due respect to preachers of all religions, I beg to know whether the same Creator created all human beings or different Creators created different human beings?
Human “Ilm” i.e. knowledge has always been expanding and progressing; that is why we have progressed from Cave Age to Net Age. We cannot allow bigots, intolerant, hate-mongering and imprudent preachers of all religions to destroy the diversity of human civilization. I fervently hope that the vast, sane and the silent majority all over the world will unite and save the diversity of human civilization.

Jai Jagat!

Saturday, 16 July 2016

How to reduce the level of corruption in India

In India, we have a limping legislative system, an almost non-functioning and defunct executive system and an infinitely time consuming judicial system. Our political system is very corrupt and that is why the whole society is very corrupt. I am suggesting below some methods to reduce the level of corruption in our society.

State funding of election expenses

Free and fair elections are absolutely essential for the good governance of our country. To run a political party and to contest elections, a lot of money is required. Almost all political parties collect the lion’s share of this money through black means, but all of them deny it. This is the root cause of all corruption in India.

So, all elections shall have to be state funded. For parliamentary elections, the parliament has to decide before each general election how much money will be required for each rural, semi-urban, urban and metropolitan seat. Each registered political party shall get the money in proportion to the percentage of votes obtained by it in the last general election. The above system shall prevail for state assembly elections and each state government will decide before elections how much money will be required for each seat.

At the end of the elections and at the end of each financial year, each political party shall have to submit its audited accounts to the Election Commission. If any political party fails to satisfy the queries of the EC, then the EC can initiate penal proceedings against that party, up to and including criminal proceedings against the state head / central head of that political party (depending on whether the election was to a state assembly or a parliamentary seat) and against the candidates in the seats involved. The penalty should also include the provision of deregistering the political party in extreme cases of violation. This alone will help reduce the level of corruption in our country to a very low level. If required, an election cess may be imposed by the parliament to fund the elections. However, this may not be necessary as the money presently spent by the political parties are genuine Indian currency, even if they are black. State funding may not be in vogue in other countries, but we can introduce it in India.

Civil Service

Above average students join the Civil Service, but ultimately almost all of them, barring some rare exceptions, become door mats of the ruling political parties in the Center and in the States in the course of their career. Due to this, the Executive System has become almost defunct. To prevent this, BDOs, SDOs, DMs, all other IAS, IPS and state Civil Service officers, all senior engineers, revenue officers, etc. shall have to be allowed to work according to the laws of the country. The promotions and punishments of these officers shall have to be decided after thorough discussions by the State/Parliamentary Standing Committees attached to the ministries under which these officers work. The ministers will take policy decisions; but the implementation of these policies shall have to be carried out by the Civil Servants according to the laws of the country. We follow the British system of governance. The British ministers, including the Prime Minister, dare not interfere in the functioning of the Civil Servants.

Vigilance Commissioner, LokPal, Lok Ayuktas, etc

These institutions are not necessary at all. These are manned by retired Civil Servants and retired judges. So, these entail extra revenue consumption. Our aim should be to minimize revenue consumption, but maximize revenue earning. Who will monitor the functioning of these functionaries? Already there are allegations against a Lok Ayukta. We shall have to allow our Civil Servants to follow the laws of the country in letter and spirit and they shall have to uphold the Indian Constitution.

To our dear Civil Servants

You have taken oaths to uphold the Indian Constitution. So, why not uphold it? The MLAs, MPs and ministers also take oaths to uphold the Indian Constitution; but most of them don’t follow their oaths; some of them even have criminal cases against them. I am sure none of you had criminal cases pending against you when you joined the Civil Service. Thousands of our country men and women laid down their lives during the freedom movement and the movement gained momentum and at last we achieved freedom.

During the British days, all eligible citizens of the entire British Empire could compete for the ICS and IP. Each candidate was allowed only two attempts and there were no reservations whatsoever. Had India not attained Independence, most of you would not have been selected at all. You are very lucky that India became Independent before you were born. So, why not uphold the Indian Constitution? The Indian Constitution does not mandate anyone to take or give bribes or to buckle under political pressure. You are public servants and not personal servants of the ministers, Chief ministers or the Prime minister. So, why do you allow yourselves to be treated like doormats? Don’t you have any self-respect? By upholding the Indian Constitution, you will regain your self-respect and the respect of the public at large.

My father told me the following incident: Tamluk and Contai sub-divisions of Midnapore district in the then Bengal declared independence from the British rule in 1942. During this period, these sub-divisions were severely ravaged by high tidal waves, cyclone and incessant rain. The then Relief Commissioner of Bengal wrote to the then British Governor of Bengal seeking his consent to send relief materials to the affected areas; but the Governor refused and wrote back, “Tamluk and Contai sub-divisions have declared Independence; so I don’t want relief materials to be sent to these places.”. The Relief Commissioner wrote back, “The Union Jack is still flying high in Midnapore town which is the headquarters of Midnapore district. The distressed people of Tamluk and Contai sub-divisions are British subjects. I owe allegiance to the British Crown. It is my duty to send succour to the distressed British subjects. If you don’t agree, I am going to overrule you and send succor to the distressed British subjects.” The Governor agreed. I very much hope that you dear friends will follow the Relief Commissioner’s example.

Appointments of Governors

The ruling party at the Centre has been using the Governors as its agents since Independence. A democratically elected state government in the South was wrongly dismissed by the Centre in the 1950s. The dismissals of state governments peaked during the rule of a very powerful Prime Minister. Repeated interventions by the Supreme Court has checked this very bad practice to some extent. To stop this bad practice altogether, let us change the procedure so that the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha shall have to be consulted and his consent obtained before appointing a State Governor.

Appointments to other very important posts

At present only the Chief Election Commissioner is a Constitutional Authority; the other to Election Commissioners shall have to be made Constitutional Authorities too. The CBI Director shall have to be made a Constitutional Authority. The CBI shall also have the authority to start prosecutions on its own. All ECs, CBI Director and CAG shall be appointed after taking the consent of the Leader of the Opposition of the Lok Sabha.

Conducting Elections

MLA and MP elections are conducted by the Central Election Commission with the central security forces. In spite of this, reports of booth capturing, intimidation of voters, murdering and maiming of voters are reported during elections. The Civil and Police administrations in all states are totally politicized. In some states they have become slaves of the ruling parties. Anarchies prevail in these states throughout the year. The basis of our democracy rests primarily and heavily on Gram Panchayat and Municipal elections. These elections are conducted by State Election Commissions with the State police forces. Compared to the CEC, the SECs do not have any authority at all. So, these elections are nothing but a total farce. So, how can democracy take deep roots in India? So, the posts of the SECs shall have to be abolished and all elections shall have to be conducted by the CEC with the respective State police forces. The State police forces shall have to be allowed to function as per the laws of the land and they shall have to maintain the rule of law all throughout the year. This will reduce violence during election times to a great extent. The deployment of Central forces need hundreds of crores of additional expense. So, this money can be saved and utilized for other more meaningful causes such as improvement of infrastructure.

Our Armed Forces

The jawans and junior officers of our armed forces march into sure deaths without batting their eyelids. But when the officers advance in their ranks, some of them get involved in corruption. Very senior officers are being alleged to be involved in corrupt practices. That day may not be far off when a serving General/Admiral/Air Chief Marshall will be interrogated by CBI/NIA. Let the selections of Brigadiers and right up to the General level officers be discussed in the Parliamentary Standing Committee attached to the Defense Ministry and the decisions taken. Same procedures shall be followed for the selections of equivalent rank officers in the Navy and Air Force as well. We are purchasing defense hardware not usually used by the supplying countries or they are selling the same hardware to other countries as well. So, there is hardly any secret not available to our neighbours. So, all defense purchases must be cleared by the Parliamentary Standing Committee attached to the Defense Ministry.

Public Sector Banks

General Manager level and right up to the Chairman level officers shall be appointed after clearances by the Parliamentary Standing Committee attached to the Finance Ministry.

Public Sector Undertakings

GM level and right up to the Chairman level officers shall have to be cleared by the Parliamentary Standing Committees attached to the respective ministries.

Bring back black money stashed outside India and recover NPAS of banks

FICCI estimated 5-6 years ago that between 40-50 lakh crore rupees were stashed outside India and they urged the Central government to bring back that money and utilize it for the development of infrastructure There is hardly any progress on this front. No political party is really interested in bringing the black money back; because almost all of them receive money from the big tax evaders, black money holders, money launderers etc. They create ruckus inside and outside the House only to fool the public. Lakhs of crores of rupees are piling up as NPAs in our public sector banks; big borrowers are involved in it; but our leaders are not really bothered about their recovery. At the same time, thousands of farmers are committing suicide because they are unable to pay their loans mostly due to crop failure. Our leaders shed crocodile tears, but do nothing to prevent such things from happening and the same heartrending incidents keep on repeating. What a cruel country is our India!

To our dear politicians

Free and fair elections at regular intervals are absolutely essential to govern our country and you are needed to contest elections. Thousands of our freedom fighters laid down their lives during the freedom movement and lakhs of our country men were murdered and many millions were displaced during the partition, losing all their properties across the newly created borders. The Non-cooperation Movement gained momentum, Azad Hind Fauz entered India, the Indian jawans of the Navy revolted in Bombay and Karachi harbours and at last we achieved freedom.
My father, who was a freedom fighter, used to lament: “We fought for freedom, but our power hungry leaders divided India.” When he used to narrate this, tears would be rolling down his cheeks. The countries created by the partition are still bleeding and I shudder to think how long these separated brothers will keep on bleeding. Almost all of you, barring very few exceptions, were very lucky to be born in independent India and enjoying power and pelf without having to undergo struggles during the freedom movement. The peoples’ representatives shall draw good salaries and perks; but they must ensure that not a single rupee is misspent from MLA and MP funds. You all are our Nation’s Vigilance Commissioners and must ensure that money is not wasted from our government’s expenditure. Those of you who are MLAs, MPs and ministers have taken oaths to uphold the Indian Constitution. Don’t you feel any urge to uphold it? Ordinary people don’t respect you at all; but they are mortally afraid of you, because you can do a lot of harm to them. One must realize that however powerful one may be, one has to die one day leaving everything behind. Then why not earn the admiration and respect of the people? Then our country will again become a very civilized country, become economically very powerful and earn the admiration of the world.

George Washington led the US independence war, became its first President and retired after two terms as the President. He set the norm that a President must retire after two terms; this is still being followed with one exception during the Second World War. Abraham Lincoln prevented the division of the US. In modern India, we are yet to see such great leaders. Sadly, it’s a very bitter truth. We as a nation cannot face bitter truths; this is bogging us down. We are still busy disintegrating the already moth-eaten India in all sorts of manners to satisfy our personal lust for power; our visions are limited only up to the next elections. Division of USA was prevented, but India was divided with catastrophic human calamities. Is it not a fact?

Whatever comments I have made about our civil servants and politicians are all in sorrow and not at all in anger. I respect our politicians who are senior to me in age and particularly those who took part in our freedom struggles. I don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings.

Disturbances in Jangal Mahals. Kashmir and North Eastern States

Disturbances in these areas are mainly due to corruptions (financial and vote bank politics). As per the Central government report, per capita expenditure of the Central government is the highest in Jammu & Kashmir; but the conditions of the people there are not good; so where does all this money go? They want the Army and other Central security forces to be withdrawn from these areas, as if these forces went to these places on their own. They have made the state police forces totally ineffective to create total anarchies, so that they can thrive on corrupt practices. The hapless people, the state police forces (they are all local people) and Central security forces are getting killed on a regular basis. All these things will be checked to a great extent, if the administrative system is corruption-free and strictly enforces the laws of the land to improve the conditions of the people in these areas. Kashmir disturbances have religious colours with the involvement of Pakistan. Pakistan has to realize that its involvement in disturbing Kashmir is causing many more disturbances in Pakistan leading to loss of human lives.

The disturbances in the Jungle Mahals started due to the abject poverty caused by corruption prevailing in these areas. There are no religious colours in their movements. Their movements are justified, but their methods are wrong. The above reasons apply for all disturbed areas, but in Kashmir Valley and some North-Eastern states religious and ethnic corruption are extra factors. Religious and ethnic corruption have divided India, it has started infernos almost all over the Earth and may ultimately destroy the whole of mankind.

I wish I could spend the remaining few years of my life among my adivasi friends in our Jungle Mahals. They are so simple and civilized. Those who grew up in nature’s lap are always simple and innocent. The people of Kashmir and North Eastern states are also simple and civilized; the power-hungry politicians have created unrests in these areas.

When communal flare-ups were raging all over India (pre and post partition), everything was peaceful in Kashmir Valley. Communal flare-ups started in the Valley perhaps in the 1980s and all the Kashmiri Hindus and the Kashmiri Sikhs were forced to leave the Valley. Why and who started these communal flare-ups? We have to thoroughly discuss the reasons; only then we can solve these problems permanently. Can Kashmir Valley survive as an independent country? What about the parts in Pakistan and under Chinese control? If Kashmir becomes independent, what will happen to Ladakh? If Kashmir becomes independent only because it is a Muslim majority state, then what will happen to the about 20 crore Muslims living in the rest of India? Has anyone thought about the consequences? We shall have to discuss all these consequences openly and thoroughly and also with our friends who demand Kashmir’s independence.Will becoming a Muslim majority nation solve any of the problems faced by the Kashmiris? The countries in Arab and Middle East are all Muslim countries and yet they are involved in bitter strife amongst themselves.

If Kashmir becomes independent, the North Eastern states may also demand their own independence. Then will India, already moth-eaten, survive? If India does not survive, will our power hungry politicians survive? If India does not survive, it may have a cascading effect on the rest of South Asia. North-Eastern Frontier province, Baluchistan and Sindh may want independence from Pakistan and so Pakistan itself may not survive. Same may happen to Myanmar as well.

Let us have no-holds barred discussions on these issues. We cannot solve major problems with a local vision; for major problems, we have to keep the whole of India and its neighbourhood within our focus.

In conclusion

My appeal to all our dear politicians: Please help to reduce corruption in our society, give up on practicing vote-bank (communal, ethnic and caste) politics, demand state funding of election and also demand good salaries and perks for yourselves.

My heart cries out for Kashmir Valley, my heart cries out for Jungle Mahal and the North Eastern states. My heart also cries out for Pakistan, the Middle East and for all the other places where human beings are engaged in killing fellow human beings. I also feel an excruciating pain in my heart for the happenings in my dear Bangladesh which has started to burn due to political corruption. If levels of corruptions (political, communal, ethnic, caste and financial) are high in a country, that country will be a hot bed of all types of terrorism including religious terrorism.

My foregoing suggestions will definitely reduce the level of corruption in our society and make our administrative system effective. In thorough public discussions, many better suggestions may come up; then these better suggestions ought to be implemented.

I very much hope that my suggestions will generate thorough public discussions nationwide. May my fellow citizens live happily and with dignity.