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The horrific rape of an eight-year-old girl in Jammu has shaken the country.

The rapists including an ex-bureaucrat and a special police officer tortured the child--who was given sedatives and raped repeatedly after being kept confined in a the temple in Kathua.

It was a pre-planned crime that was aimed to scare the nomadic Muslims living in the region, says police charge-sheet. The DNA reports have corroborated the involvement of Sanji Ram, Special Police Officer Deepak Khajuria and others.

If that is not enough, they called a person to rape her once more, before she was to be killed. When the accused were arrested, the BJP (and some Congress too) leaders came out in support of rape accused.

They took out a 'tiranga yatra' in Jammu. Lawyers in Jammu supported the accused and resisted the charge-sheet in the court. The lawyer fight the child's case was threatened. BJP leaders including ministers kept speaking in favour of the rapists.

But the question that haunts us is that how could these people turn so evil that they planned to plan the horrible crime of kidnapping a child--the age of their granddaughter, and rape her in a temple!

Still, the BJP leaders came out demanding release of the monsters involved in the crime. There were rallies. The media was not interested. It took nearly three months, a charge-sheet, outrage on social media, that finally this case has got the attention.

The photographs of the accused, the story of the victim--nothing was carried in mass circulated English and Hindi newspapers for months. It was absolute silence. After candle light vigils and protests on April 12, finally media picked it up.

Still, BJP leaders on TV, were involved in hate speak and weird counter arguments. The incident shows how there is now a breed in India that has lost all sense of morality and can go to any extent to further their power, influence, authority and ideology. Right-wing Hindu extremism has reached Nazi level in India in 2018.

Time to wake, before it's too late. 
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In a shocking incident, a man beheaded his daughter-in-law for defying 'Rajput traditions'.

The woman--Uma Rajput, was hacked to death by her father-in-law, as she 'dared to go out for work'.

In a patriarchal society, this had brought 'dishonour to his family', felt the accused. He publicly killed his daughter-in-law, by attacking her with a sword.

The incident took place in Alwar in Rajasthan. India Today reports, "The woman was on her way to work at a factory in Shahjahanpur village in Alwar district when her father-in-law brandished a sword and allegedly chopped her head off."

"As the woman was attacked, none of the passersby came forward to help her. She died on the spot. Subsequently, police took her body to the mortuary of the local hospital. The victim, identified as Uma, is survived by her husband Mukesh Rajput and two children", India Today further reports.

"Both Uma and Mukesh worked to run the family and provide for the education of their two children. When questioned, family members and neighbours of the woman said that her father-in-law Maamraj was upset with her for working in a factory", the report adds.
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In a shocking incident, a man beheaded his daughter-in-law for defying 'Rajput traditions'.

The woman--Uma Rajput, was hacked to death by her father-in-law, as she 'dared to go out for work'.

In a patriarchal society, this had brought 'dishonour to his family', felt the accused. He publicly killed his daughter-in-law, by attacking her with a sword.

The incident took place in Alwar in Rajasthan. India Today reports, "The woman was on her way to work at a factory in Shahjahanpur village in Alwar district when her father-in-law brandished a sword and allegedly chopped her head off."

"As the woman was attacked, none of the passersby came forward to help her. She died on the spot. Subsequently, police took her body to the mortuary of the local hospital. The victim, identified as Uma, is survived by her husband Mukesh Rajput and two children", India Today further reports.

"Both Uma and Mukesh worked to run the family and provide for the education of their two children. When questioned, family members and neighbours of the woman said that her father-in-law Maamraj was upset with her for working in a factory", the report adds.
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Child marriages are widely prevalent in India.

One of the biggest social evils, the practice of child marriage is yet to be checked in the country.

Millions of minors tie the knot every year because of social acceptance in several regions.

The latest figures suggest that 27 percent of girls, or nearly 1.5 million girls, get married before they turn 18 in India.

Though there has been a decline in number of child marriages in India, compared to last decade, the figure is still mind-boggling. In rural parts of the India, child marriages are more common.

In Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and other North Indian states, tens of thousands of children are made to tie the nuptial knot on the day of 'Akshay Tritiya'.

UNICEF claims that the steps to check child marriages have brought the numbers down, yet, the practice is so widespread that it is difficult to stop it.

India leads the world in child marriages. It recorded six times more child marriages that Bangladesh. It is far ahead of Nigeria, Brazil and Ethiopia that are other countries on the list.

While India is on the top, the other countries in the list include Bangladesh, Nigeria, Brazil, Ethiopia
Pakistan, Indonesia, Mexico, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Tanzania. Clearly, in seventy years, India hasn't done enough to eradicate social evils. 
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Caste is the fundamental identity in India, at times, even stronger than religion.

Every day, there are incidents of casteist violence and oppression all over the country.

Many people who pretend to be modern and flaunt their liberal credentials deny that caste exist and vehemently say that they don't believe in caste.

But when it comes to marriage, they always go for a match from their own caste. It's a harsh reality. Caste groups hold events regularly, organise their conventions in cities and towns, inculcate sense of pride among their members.

They also hold introductory meets for youths so that the youngsters marry within the caste. The so-called 'honour killings' are just an example of this deep-rooted caste phenomenon in Indian society.

Casteism is a mental ailment. People afflicted it with are conditioned from childhood. It's like apartheid, even worse. Here, the race is same, religion is same and even skin colour is same. But hate overcomes everything.

A girl is writhing in pain on the floor after she was made to drink poison by her own family. Sushma was given this punishment as she loved a man outside the community and wanted to marry him.

This incident occurred near Mysuru in Karnataka. Sushma wanted to marry a Dalit youth. Hence, the family decided to kill her. Her father forced poison down her throat. See report

And that's so common that it doesn't prick the conscience of people or shock the nation, anymore.

It is no aberration but a regularity. It happens in rural parts, it happens even in town and big cities of the country.

Just see the matrimonial advertisements and you find how caste functions. Everyone wants to marry within caste.

And those who are exceptions--say 'Caste no bar', yet don't want to marry Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe  (ST) or Other Backward Caste (OBC).
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Will it now be acknowledged that 'White Supremacist Terror' is one of the biggest threats to the society?

It is a threat to society, not just in United States of America (USA), but outside too [including Europe].

As many a 17 persons including mostly students and staff, were shot dead in the massacre that has shocked the entire world.

Nikolas Cruz, a former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, entered the school premises, opened fire, killing 17 people and injuring over 14.


Cruz used an AR-15 style rifle for the coldblooded murders on the school campus.

In fact, a month before the shooting, FBI had received a tip that Cruz had made a threat but due to 'error', this information wasn't taken seriously.

Most of the victims in the horrific school shootings were students who were teenagers.

Alyssa, Martin, Nicholas, Jaime, Luke, Cara, Gina, Alaina, Meadow, Helena, Alex, Carmen, Peter--they were all in the age group of 14-17. There were others Chris, Scott and Aaron, from the staff.

WHEN TERRORISTS DIDN'T FIT 'MEDIA-CREATED IMAGE'

There has been a long list of White men involved in shootings, massacres and killings in United States of America (USA).


Gun violence is one of the biggest problems for America. However, these people are often termed 'insane shooter', 'gunman', 'madman', but NOT terrorist.

The list of these 'gunmen' is long:

Anders Breivik killed 77 persons in Norway
Devin Kelley who killed 26 people in a Church
Wade Michael Page who killed devotees in a Sikh Gurdwara
Dylann Roof who killed nine blacks
Timothy McVeigh who killed 168 in Oklahama
James Holmes who killed people in a theatre
Robert James Talbot, Esteban Santiago, Alexandre Bissonette, Chris Harper Mercer, among others.

1. Victims of Florida School Shooting, names and photos
2. Wikipedia page on Stoneman Douglas school shootings in Florida
3. Florida gunman said he wanted to be a 'professional school shooter' and FBI were warned
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It is not easy to describe what is happening in India [and Indian media] right now.

Top media houses that were once looked upon and had set standards of journalism, have fallen into disgrace.

They not just promote fake news but reward journalists who fan hatred through fake stories based on rumours or tweets of parody accounts.

Ethics have been thrown off the window. Any false claim can be made and any incident can be twisted to suit the agenda. Each and every day, many anchors on several TV channels are trying to outdo each other in how much fake news they can spread and how much they could do to divide Indian society on religious lines.

This is just unbelievable. Till a few years ago, one couldn't even imagine that Indian media would fall to such levels. Journalists who refuse to toe the line are being shown the door. However, those who spread venom day in and day out, are getting rewarded.
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'You don't look like Muslim'.

Many people have heard it time and again from non-Muslim friends.

This is because it is deeply embedded in the minds that Muslims are backward.

It's a bias, they have grown up with. Either at home or through media, the society--it's conditioning.

Backward, on what social indicators? How the entire Muslim community can be termed backward?

And aren't Hindus backward? But many Muslims also keep repeating the line 'Muslims are backward'.

Either its sex ratio or discrimination with women and girl child, infant mortality rate or malnutrition, dowry deaths or other many more indicators, Muslims aren't backward.

Yes, as far as education is concerned, Muslims are a bit behind. But there are Hindus too, large sections who are far behind. Visit rural parts of the country or tribal hamlets, you'll see the poorest of poor--sans proper clothes, malnourished and without bare minimum facilities.

More people who die of hunger or the poor and homeless who die because of natural factors--heat or cold in extreme seasons, while sleeping in the open, are Hindu.

Muslims are more urbanized and have a different social system, a parallel economy, that helps them survive. But by parroting the sentence that Muslims are backward, we too fall in this trap.

It is defaming Muslims for no reason. There are tremendously educated people among Muslims, there are actors and sports persons, there are Muslim achievers in all fields just like in Hindus or Sikhs, Christians or Jains.

Yes, benefits of schemes don't reach large section of Muslim masses just like certain other sections. Often, state policies and lack of due representation are among the reasons. But that doesn't make Muslims 'backward'.

Muslims are trying hard to progress despite the fact that they are under-represented in jobs, in politics, and don't get reservation. Still, the community members are working hard, trying to move despite all odds.

But we should get rid of this 'backward community' narrative. It is not at all true that Muslims are backward. There is poverty, there are issues, but terming 'Indian Muslims' as a whole is backward, is wrong.

It has no basis. It is just an attempt to sully the image of Muslims.

Photo courtesy ShutterStock in Hindustan Times. LINK
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Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

A member of parliament (MP) says that Muslims should leave India and yet there is no action taken against him by his party.

Forget, even the talk of disciplinary action, there is no need to even dissociate or distance itself from his statement (by the party).

In any mature democracy, a responsible political party would be ashamed that its leader made such a fascist, communal and racist comment but NOT in India.

It's normal here, unfortunately.

Vinay Katiyar doesn't have any qualms in making hate speeches or outrageous comments because speeches that seem to rival Nazi hate propaganda and threats against minorities, are considered normal in India.

Katiyar has been an MP for several terms. Besides, he has been national general secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which claims to be the biggest political party in the world on account of its membership.

Just days ago, he made another vicious remark during Kasganj violence. He said that pro-Pakistanis were involved in violence. The word 'Pakistani' is directed at Muslims time and again to show him/her their place because of being a religious minority and doubt the Muslims' patriotism.

If, in the world's biggest democracy, the senior leader of the main party can make such statements and get away, you can have an understanding about the manner in which democracy functions in the country.

Katiyar, 63, hails from Kanpur. He has been a member of Lok Sabha from Faizabad, several times in the past. Right now, he is a member of the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the parliament. There are specific laws against hate speech in India.

The privileges-clout enjoyed by politicians ensure that they can get away with anything--spreading hate or even instigating communal riots. Media hasn't been too harsh on him for the 'outrageous' statement.

It is commonly said that such people should be ignored but the problem is that he is no 'fringe voice' and ignoring has brought us to the situation where there are dozens of hate-mongers, as no one has fear of law. Besides, abusing or threatening Muslims is a sure-shot way to succeed in right-wing politics.

1. BJP's Vinay Katiyar continues his hate-mongering, says Muslims should leave India
2. Katiyar demand for Muslims to leave India shows BJP is cranking up hate machine for 2019
3. Outrageous statements shouldn’t be taken lightly: Katiyar said Taj Mahal would be turned into temple
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That's the real power of pen, or byte, in our times--destroying lives.

Irresponsible reporting and you ruin lives just because you want to create sensation or because of your biases (communal) against certain sections of society.

A girl was wrongly termed 'fidayeen'. 'a bomber'. On Republic day, the news flashed on TV screens. Suddenly, there was fear and alarm.

All the major issues were now forgotten, as this 'sensational news' was on TV channels. By next day, it was forgotten. There were no follow-ups or no apologies for wrong and misleading reporting.

So what happened to the girl? How she was termed a bomber? The fact is that there was not even an FIR registered in this case. She was not even arrested. Yet, it became national news on Republic Day, creating panic and fear.

Some websites reported how the girl returned to Pune. Others mentioned that the news was a hoax. Hoax? And all fell for it?* There, she said that how this incident affected her career.

"The J&K Police have sent an email to Pune police clearing me of all the falsehoods. Unfortunately, because of the wrong and biased media reports and campaign against me, on 27 January, the college abruptly cancelled my admission for the nursing course".

However, even in these reports, her name was mentioned, which again demonizes her. How irresponsible and shabby, journalism can be in India. It's just a reflection of it. And this has been the norm here for decades.

Why media does it, again and again?

Come Jan 26 and Aug 15, when security is at its peak, such stories appear, year after year same pattern. This year too there was flash on channels 'fidayeen girl from Pune caught', without any confirmation.

All over India hundreds of people are stopped during security check on R-Day or I-Day. Four-wheelers, scooters, all sorts of vehicles are checked. This is rotuine.

Now you cleverly write, 'Suspect caught, terror link not ruled out'. Who can deny this? Those reporters who never get a scoop other wise, can sell this to boss as page 1 story. Power of pen! Happens in all states, cities.

Of course, security agencies feel good, it shows their alacrity on important days, that they are working hard, no blame either, journos doing it for them. Communal bias is another aspect.

The 'other' is always a suspect and while putting pen to paper, this is reflected. So what if lives are ruined! As far as victim is concerned, once the ordeal is over, they are so exhausted and relieved that they don't even think of taking legal steps.

Besides, when there are dozens of media houses, agencies, newspapers, channels. How many can you drag to courts? And once again it requires resources--money, links and power. If you don't have it, you can't do it.

Besides, it affects the person's own life. Hence, the victim also tries to rorget and forgive. That's how the world goes. This is how journalism works in the country.
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