Former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh and president of Jai Samaikyaandhra Party, Kiran Kumar Reddy, has opted out of the contest in the May 7 election in the State.
Though Kiran was expected to file his nomination from his home turf Piler Assembly constituency in Chittoor district on Saturday, he opted out at the last minute and instead fielded his younger brother Kishore Kumar Reddy as the JSP candidate.
Kiran’s decision not to…
The Election Commission on Saturday revised the poll percentage of the April-17 second phase election in Jharkhand to 63.45 per cent from 62 per cent which was announced on the polling day.
The revision of the percentage was done after getting the final poll percentage from Ranchi (63.74 per cent), Hazaribagh (63.75) and Jamshedpur (66.38), an Election Commission release said in Ranchi.
62 per cent polling recorded in Jharkhand
BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi addresses an election campaign rally at Kakoijan in Bongaigaon district of Assam on Saturday. (PTI Photo)
As both BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi were addressing rallies in Assam on Saturday Modi challenged Rahul Gandhi to ‘face-off.’
Virtually throwing a challenge…
बसप के सांसद शफ़िक़ुर रहमान बर्क़, द्वारा राष्ट्रगीत का संसद मे अपमान एक बहुत हीं निंदनीय घटना है । इसमें दोष भारत को इस्लामी साम्राज्यवाद की नज़रों से देखने का है, भारत तब भी था, जब इस्लाम नहीं था। भारत मैं कई राजनितिक व्यवस्थाएं आई और चली गयी। भारत आगे बढ़ता गया शक आये हूण आये, सब भारत में विलीन हो गए । भारत कभी रुका नहीं, कई दर्शनशाश्त्रों का यहाँ जन्म हुआ, द्वत, अद्वेत, सांख्य, विषिष्ट अद्वैत, यहाँ तक की नास्तिक (महर्षि चरक ) आदि को भी भारत न स्वीकारा ।
इस्लामी साम्राज्यवाद जहाँ भी गया, वह उस देश, देश की संस्कृति को पदाक्रांत करते हुए आगे बढ़ा, न तो उस साम्राज्य में किसी और मत / दर्शन के लिए जगह थी, और न हीं किसी प्रकार की सहिष्णुता थी। भारत एक मात्र ऐसा देश था, जिसने इस असहिष्णु साम्राज्य के रथ को न सिर्फ रोका, बल्कि इसके पतन की शुरुआत की । भारत कमजोर हुआ पर उसने गौरी, अकबर, औरंगजेब, टीपू सुल्तान आदि के इस्लामी साम्राज्य को कभी पूरा नहीं होने दिया| पृथ्वीराज चोहान, महाराणा प्रताप, गुरु तेग बहादुर, गुरु गोबिंद सिंह, शिवाजी, मराठा, सिख सबने अपनी अपनी तरह से इस साम्राज्य के रथ को रोका ।
औरंगजेब के पश्चात् (1707 ) मुग़ल साम्राज्य का मराठा सेनाओं ने तक़रीबन अंत भी कर दिया, 1761 मे पानीपत का तीसरा युद्ध मराठा सेनाओं और अहमद शाह अब्दाली ( जो की अफ़ग़ानिस्तान से था ) मैं हुआ, इस युद्ध मे भारत के हीं मुस्लिम राजा (शुजा उद दौला - अवध का नवाब, आदि ) इस्लाम के नाम पर अब्दाली के साथ हो गए|
आनंदमठ ऐसा हीं एक उपन्यास है, जिसमे इस काळ- खण्ड की विवेचना की गयी है, इसको सिर्फ मुस्लिम विरोध के रूप मैं देखने उचित नहीं है, यह एक राजनितिक व्यवस्था के विरोध की बात है । पर - वन्दे माँ तरम- गीत आनंदमठ का हीं गीत नहीं रहा, वह अंग्रेजी साम्राज्य के विरोध का ध्येय वाक्य भी बना । यदि वन्दे मातरम आनंदमठ का हीं गीत रहता, तो शायद अंग्रेज कभी भारत से न जाते । वन्दे माँ तरम - इस देश की अपनी परम्परा का द्योतक है, यह धरती हमारी माँ है, सारे देवी देवता अगर हैं तो उनका निवास इस धरती में हीं है, यह मातृभूमी हमें सुजल, सुफल, शितलता देने वाली है । यदि किसी को इस गीत से आपत्ति है, तो शायद वह व्यक्ति इस देश की आत्मा को समझ हीं नहीं पाया है, ऐसे हीं लोग भारत के विभाजन के लिए जिम्मेदार थे ।
वन्दे माँ तरम ।
Bangalore: Govindaraja Nagar unit of RSS along with Yadava Seva Pratishtan and Rashtrotthana Blood Bank, organised Blood donation Camp on Sunday, March 17. The blood donation camp was held as part of 107th Birth year of Second Sarasanghachalak of RSS Guruji Golwalkar and 150th Birth Year of Swami Vivekananda. The camp was held at Nachiketa Manovikas Kendra at Govindarajanagar at Bangalore. More than 100 volunteers donated blood on the occasion.
THE profoundness of Dharma as the overarching basis of life transcended all Indian religions – namely Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism. Says Professor Gavin Flood on Hindu concepts: “Dharma is an important term in Indian religions.(1) But a concept like Dharma is entirely absent in other civilisations. Because of that the colonial scholars wrongly perceived ‘Dharma’ as equivalent of religion. But religion is a Western concept; the Indian concept is neither religion nor even Hinduism nor any ‘ism’ — it is Sanatana Dharma, the eternal law of the universe, which cannot be formulated in any rigid and final set of tenets.”(2) The West knew religion but it had no familiarity with the idea of Dharma. In India people knew that Dharma was common to all religions in India, which was known to all in the country down to illiterate villagers through wandering priests, bards and the like.(3)
Therefore Guruji had been arguing, emphasising and asserting that Dharma, which is an overarching idea, should not be equated to religion which is a narrower concept. Yet the Indian intellectual discourse ignored his plea and the Constitution which was amended three years after Guruji’s life time actually legislated Dharma as equal to religion. When Guruji was endeavouring to explain to the people of India the truth about Hinduism, Hindus, their past and their history, and about the difference between Dharma and religion, particularly in the context of the Semitic religions and their attitudes, secular intellectuals refused to understand the deeper and profound implications of his thoughts. This was essentially because of the basic belief of the people of this country that all religions are alike, leading to the well meaning but not so correct use of the principle of the word “Dharma” in the concept Sarvadharmasamabhava in the sense of equal treatment for all faiths. This idea of Sarvadharmasamabhava had led to total intellectual and political confusion in the mind of even informed people about the very meaning of what ‘religion’ was and what ‘Dharma’ meant. There was a popular tendency to equate ‘Dharma’, which was common to all faiths in India, with ‘Panth’, that is religion.
The principle of Dharma commonly shared by different religious tenets made religious differences minimal. In the process the religion itself also became known by the suffix “Dharma” like ‘Hindu’ Dharma, ‘Jaina’ Dharma, ‘Sikh’ Dharma, ‘Buddha’ Dharma, which meant that there was nothing like separate dharma for each religion, but the common idea of Dharma was interpreted by different religions and masters in their own way, namely Dharma as interpreted by Buddha was Buddhism, Dharma as perceived by Mahavira was Jaina Dharma, Dharma as understood by Guru Nanak was Sikh Dharma and so on. Then came the intervention of the Semitic faiths, which having had no experience of sharing any common idea, much less anything akin to the concept of Dharma, with other religions – even with other Abrahamic faiths with which they shared common history – brought in a different, and exclusive, concept of a religion. Dr S Radhakrishnan, the philosopher statesman of India had described the exclusiveness of the Semitic religions as debilitating. Not only the idea of different religions in India never suffered from any exclusiveness, as none of them denied the right of the other to exist, the idea of Dharma was common to all the Indian faiths. But with the advent of the Semitic faiths in India in addition to the Indian religions, the very common idea of Dharma got mixed up with religion. This was how the Dharma got substituted for religion in popular Indian parlance. So, despite the fact that Dharma was common for all religions in India, the word Dharma itself became synonymous with religion. This is where the catch came.
Dharma equated to religion in the Hindi version of the Constitution
The meaning of Dharma in the distorted popular discourse that followed the Semitic religious interpretation of Indian religions later entered the Constitution of the country though after Guruji’s life time. When the Constitution was amended in the year 1976 to include the word “Secular’ as one of the attributes of the Indian State, the Hindi version of the Constitution of India translated the word “secular”, that was considered neutral to religion, to read dharma nirapekshata to characterise religion neutral state, namely the secular state. But this had perverted the meaning of Dharma in the Indian context. Dharma nirapekshata — which was intended to convey that the Indian State is religion-neutral – in effect had the effect of making the Indian State Dharma-neutral, namely neutral to Dharma. Neutrality to Dharma meant keeping equidistance from Dharma which would mean that the State would keep equal distance both Dharma and Adharma! The State in our conception cannot be neutral to Dharma and Adharma. But the State has to adhere to Dharma – Rajadharma. By wrong popular use, the great concept Dharma got mixed up with religion for lack of clarity between the two.
‘Dharma’ as different from ‘religion’ was the far reaching message of Guruji
The first challenge that Guruji faced in his struggle against the popular notion that Dharma was equal to religion was how to preserve the concept of Dharma as common to all sections of the people of this country regardless of their faiths and how to make everyone understand that Dharma in this sense is different from religion in the sense in which the Semitic/Abrahamic faiths have been understood in the West. To initiate a debate on this fundamental issue, Guruji had go into elementary things about what was ‘Religion’ and what was ‘Dharma’. He struggled all alone and fought relentlessly to keep the difference between Dharma and religion in the discourse. He kept on insisting and repeating, as is evident from his discourses, that Dharma is not religion in the sense in which the latter word is meant in the West. It was in an utterly confusing situation that Guruji had to initiate the process of clearing and recovering the mind of India. He saw that the restricted meaning given to the idea of religion in the Abrahamic/Semitic parlance had begun influencing the different belief systems in India and created differences among them. Guruji compared the Semitic idea of religion which was based on one single book, one single prophet and one single God(4) with the Hindu view that all religions were different paths to reach the same God, and pointed out how the Hindu society itself, thanks to the influence from outside, has begun to perceive its diversity in worship as differences. Guruji said that “the narrow concept of religion [meaning the Semitic concept] seems to have had its effect upon us” and that “the Semitic concept of religion bred intolerance and divided people in the name of religion.” Guruji explained how Hindu Dharma had integrated and assimilated the diverse streams of faiths and beliefs by the idea of Dharma.(5) While Guruji was endeavouring to raise the level of debate to important issues and not persons or politics, the discourse in the country, either intellectual, political or judicial, never rose to the heights to which Guruji had endeavoured to lift it, even though it had shown enormous propensity to misunderstand and misrepresent Guruji. Guruji thus had to struggle against the shallow discourse that had no objective other than immediate political or other gains, even though it risked and prejudiced the long term interests of the nation. The impediment that Guruji faced in his mission to recover the true meaning of Dharma was more from the Indian intellectual establishment’s colonial training to mix up ‘Religion’ with ‘Dharma’.
Guruji’s views on Dharma accepted by judiciary and in politics decades later
But it took a long long time for the Indian establishment to realise the difference between Dharma and religion. Only after Guruji’s life time, the general Indian discourse started becoming conscious that there is a world of difference between Dharma and religion and that Dharma is a higher, overarching principle of life on earth. With the result, in the judicial pronouncements as well as in political discourse today, Dharma is freely and unreservedly used as different from religion and worship. The highest judiciary in India today speaks about Dharma thus: “‘Dharma’ is that which upholds, nourishes, or supports the stability of the society, maintains social order and secures the wellbeing and progress of mankind.”(6) It is precisely in these terms Guruji expounded the idea of Dharma, namely, “the power which brings individuals together and sustains them as a society is called Dharma.”(7) The understanding about Dharma as distinct and different from religion permeates in the political discourse of India. Many political leaders including a self-professed non-believer like M. Karunanidhi, who heads the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam [DMK] that has clearly visible anti-Hindu tendencies, talks of “Coalition Dharma” in politics.(8) Atal Behari Vajpayee, as Prime Minister, spoke of “Raj Dharma”.(9) So Dharma is not only a national idiom for value based order in the society but also a political idiom for an ethical and moral principle that stood above religion and worship.
So, despite the Hindi version of the Constitution continuing to equate Dharma with religion, the highest judiciary has accepted that Dharma is not but above religion – though long after Guruji’s lifetime. Likewise the Indian political discourse which had distorted the meaning of Dharma as religion too has begun talking of Dharma as a higher principle than religion.
 Michel Danino French Scholar http://veda.wikidot.com/dharma-and-religion
 Sociology of religion in India Volume 3 of Themes in Indian Sociology Volume 3 of Contributions to Indian Sociology Series; Author: Rowena Robinson; Editor: Rowena Robinson; Contributor: Rowena Robinson; Publisher: SAGE, 2004; ISBN 0761997814, 9780761997818
 Bunch of Thoughts 1980Ed p137
 Ibid p135-37
 The Global Ethic by Justice M Rama Jois (Former Chief Justice, Punjab & Haryana state, India) available at: http://www.scribd.com/doc/8499774/Dharma-Global-Ethics
 Bunch of Thoughts p.60
 The Hindu newspaper dated 31.10.2006
NDIA is making headlines once again in the world press, but not for anything India or Indians have done. First, British prime minister David Cameron paid a visit, his second in two years, and though he came here on business – Business with Capital B – he found time to pay a visit to Jallianwala Bagh to pay homage to hundreds of Indians killed in cold blood there by a mad British Commander way back in 1919, almost a hundred years ago. But for the unexpected visit, nobody would have taken notice of Cameron’s visit, except the usual mad-for-foreign crowd that go mad at such things.
The second big event of the week was the triumph, if you can call it that, of India and Indians at the presentation of Oscars in Hollywood. A film, Life of Pi, in which Indian actors, including a young boy, feature prominently, received three awards, including one for director Ang Lee, who is not an Indian but a citizen of Taiwan. Ang Lee thanked everyone profusely and ended his speech with a graceful namaste, as unusual ending on the part of a Chinese. This is the second time a film with an Indian them and a large number of Indian actors have figured prominently in what happens to be an Indian story in recent Oscar awards.
Let me take Cameron first. Did he have something more in mind when he made a trip to Jallianwala from Delhi? Was he angling for Sikh votes back in his country where the Sikhs figure prominently in certain areas? It doesn’t seem likely. Actually, Cameron didn’t really offer an apology for the massacre at the hands of British troops – all he did, going by the photographs, is to stand stiffly before the monument in silence, like a Guards officer outside Buckingham Palace in London – and later issued a statement of regret, a century too late. After all, it was his own army, or his country’s army, that had been responsible for the unprovoked massacre in cold blood, though for the British it may have been one of those imperial incidents they have learnt to take in their stride.
But the shooting was not done by British soldiers. There was not a single British officer in sight, except Brig-General R.E.H. Dyer, who was in charge and who ordered the shooting. He was very much an Indian himself, born and bred in India, admittedly of British parents, who had spent his entire life in India—in a military career that had brought him so far. His family belonged to the famous Dyers of Murree, now in Pakistan, who had set-up a brewery in Solan, near Simla, where they brewed the famous Dyer-Meakin beer. Dyer had gone to school in Simla, knew Urdu very well, but, for some reason, was not a happy man. What provoked him to such a step is not known. Dyer died in England, a rich man, after collecting a lot of money from his admirers, most of them MPs, who had no regrets whatsoever about their friend’s role in the ghastly atrocity.
Actually, the story is not as simple as it is made out to be. You have to go back sixty years to 1857 when the story began to take root. The uprising of 1857 shook up the British establishment, for it had almost cost them their empire. For the first time after taking over the reins from East India Company, they had to face a widespread rebellion, in which Hindus and Muslims came together to put up a fight against them. This was, as they say, a wake-up call, and they had vowed never again to fall into the trap. They never really trusted Indians after 1857 and did everything possible to keep Hindus and Muslims apart. Thus was born the Indian National Congress, an essentially Indo-Anglian operation, or rather a Hindu-Anglian operation, with most of ropes in the hands of the Britishers. A few years later, came the Muslim League, which, together with the Congress, set the tone for British imperial policy in the sub-continent.
The Britishers, especially uneducated army men like Dyer, saw a mutineer in every Indian and this panic reaction to any large-scale demonstration by Indians always set off bells ringing in army messes, and later in the government. Dyer must have seen red on that Baisakhi day in Amritsar and gave an order to shoot at sight. This is what they were to !do again and again whenever they were confronted by large gatherings of Indians on the war-path.
I have a feeling that the British never really believed in Gandhi’s non-violence and never really understood or tried to understand his truth and non-violence claptrap. At least, the army did not. They were always on the alert and ready to strike at the shortest notice, and strike hard until it hurt. They also used British forces – not Indian soldiers – whenever they felt things were going to far, as, for instance, during the Quit India movement.
I was a student in Pune at the time, and we were always watched by British army men and intelligence agencies, not Indian police or Indian army men, at almost every step. We had taken out a procession the day after Gandhiji and others were arrested and found ourselves suddenly surrounded by rifle-toting red-faced British soldiers, whose faces could be seen clearly under their khaki helmets. At a road junction, not far from Lokmanya Tilak’s house and office, we were halted by a posse of these soldiers, a full company of British troops with fingers on the triggers. One step forward, we were told on the loudspeaker and they would fire without further notice, that is, shoot at us, or may be shoot us, as they had done in Jallianwala Bagh less than 25 years earlier. I have a feeling that they meant what they said, for a soldier in panic is worse than a tiger at bay.
We have been led to believe that it was Gandhiji’s non-violent movement that brought us freedom, and, but for him, we would still be chains, I don’t believe it at all. I have spoken to Britishers, including men who had held high posts in India and England and were close to the British establishment, and they always had a glint in the eye whenever they spoke about these matters. What really shook the British were people like Savarkar and Bhagat Singh, men who had seen through the British game in India, and never trusted them. They were treated brutally. Bhagat Singh was hanged and they would have hanged Savarkar too but he was one step away from any assassination, and could not be nailed. They tried everything in their bag of tricks to eliminate him but the man was too much for them. They hated his guts, and the guts of people like him, but could do nothing. For Gandhi, they had nothing but contempt, though they kept him in good humour for other reasons.
After Jallianwala, the British really stepped up their “Divide and Rule” tactics and encouraged men like Jinnah at every step. The transformation of Jinnah from a nationalist into a communalist was their biggest achievement, which ultimately weakened Hindus and led to the Partition of India.It was the British who created Jinnah and he did precisely what they wanted him to do. For they had made up their minds to split up India before handing if over to the Hindus, whom they feared, and who, they believed would use their strength in a massive industrialised India to rise again in the world and pose a threat to the West.
Mohammed Ali Jinnah was the creation of the British, along with the so-called Macaulay’s children – actually Macaulay’s intellectual inheritors – the English – speaking westernised Indian hordes, who were neither Hindus nor Westerners but somewhere in between, like all inheritors, led by the likes of Jawaharlal Nehru, who was as much a creation of the British as Jinnah. Between these two, India would be paralysed for ever, so the British believed, and they were not far wrong.
Jinnah Partitioned India physically, while Nehru did so politically and culturally, until the Hindus realised they were being fooled by this “secular” crowd, which was nothing but a fifth column left behind by the west. Now Nehruism is being elevated into an “Idea of India” by some stupid men residing in the west, who, too, like Nehru & Co., despise Hindus and would rather be bootlickers of West than genuine self-respecting children of the soil.
I have a feeling that Gandhiji must have realised that he and his non-violence must have made him play into the hands of the British, but by then, it was too late, No wonder, he died a broken man, long before he was killed.
I was in England at the time of our Independence, some of us had been invited by India office – the office of the secretary of state for India, the ultimate seat of British power in India – on the eve of Independence to have tea with the secretary of state, a man called Lord Pethick-Lawrence. I asked him how he felt.
“Do you really want an answer?” he asked.
For man who had just lost an empire, he seemed quite at peace with himself, though like other Britishers, he did not show it!
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