Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Rizwan Ahmed takes over as UP's first Muslim police chief

 The New Year in Uttar Pradesh dawns the advent of the state’s first Muslim director general of police, with chief minister Akhilesh Yadav naming 1978 batch Indian Police Service officer Rizwan Ahmed as the new police chief.

Ahmad, who was heading the railway police set up in the state, assumed office of the DGP, in Lucknow on Tuesday evening, following the retirement of Devraj Nagar, who had taken over the reins of the state police barely a few months back.

Ahmad too will superannuate in the next three months when he turns 60. However, in view of the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, there was every possibility of him getting an extension, since the poll notification would in all likelihood be issued around March 2014.

While Ahmad had been in the race for the top job over the past few months, he was seen an unlikely choice, essentially because UP Chief Secretary Jawed Usmani also happens to be a Muslim. Going by the traditional logic, successive governments avoided having the chief secretary and DGP of the same caste or creed. And given the significance that governments have been giving to caste an religion over merit or seniority, even Ahmad used to feel that he may not be considered at all.

However, it was Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav who used his veto to handpick Ahmad, overlooking the claim of other aspirants -- A L Banerjee, Arun Kumar Gupta and Ranjan Dwivedi.

Evidently, Mulayam’s final decision is understood to have been influenced by his desperation to woo back Muslims, who were appearing to be terribly disillusioned with the ruling SP because of the government’s poor handling of the Muzaffarnagar riots.

Apart from the communal violence  that took more than 50 lives, most of whom were Muslims, the UP government was also harsh on those who were rendered homeless and had sought refuge in relief camps set up for the victims. As many as 34 children died in the relief camps because of the inadequate arrangement to protect them from the biting cold.

And no sooner than Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi sneaked into these camps unannounced to highlight the plight of the victims, the state government not only ordered closure of the camps, but also uprooted the victims. 

Mulayam, who was widely seen to be doing all the backseat driving behind his chief minister son, even went to the extent of labeling the camp inmates as “conspirators planted there by the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party.”

Having drawn much flak on account of these controversies, Mulayam hopes to retrieve his apparently lost Muslim support with one stroke -- appointing a Muslim as the state’s first Muslim police chief.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Shahriar Kabir’s documentary evidences truest, cruelest nature of Islamic fundamentalism

“The Ultimate Jihad” – latest documentary of Shahriar Kabir, noted journalist, filmmaker, human rights activist from Bangladesh and also leader of anti-fundamentalism struggle, has evoked a good response from the audience in Kolkata who witnessed it on Saturday, December 21. Terming the rough treatment of Debjani Khobragade, Indian diplomat stationed in the United States, of late by the indigenous governance there as a novel American endeavor to caution India, Shahriar Kabir stated that it was the fallout of a bitter disagreement between India and United States over the nature of Islamic fundamentalism in the Indian subcontinent. United States is making all efforts to strengthen Jamaat as the spokesperson of “soft religious bigotry” against the all-encompassing fundamentalism championed by Talibans – a notion refuted by India, known to bear burnt of Islamic terrorist attacks always. 

Now the question remains of the authenticity of American analysis of the changing reality. Kabir prefers to term it as not wrong only but also as the greatest blunder perpetrated by the “West” hitherto also.    On the word of him, whether it is Turkey or Iran, from Baluchistan in Pakistan sharing international border with Afghanistan to Darul Uloom Deoband in Uttar Pradesh or even New Delhi or Hyderabad or Lahore or Karachi, there is no difference between Islamic fundamentalist notions – there is nothing as soft or hard, modern or mediaeval, and at the end of the day, it is nothing but anti-non-Muslim hatred that reigns fundamentalists altogether.  Jamaat-e-Islami in Bangladesh happens to be the branch of an international parental organization and in this context it is akin to Islamic Brotherhood in Egypt or Syria and Taliban in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. Jamaat also enjoys the support of Al-Qaeda, it is worth mentioning. Truly, Jammat cadres are opting for western dress in Bangladesh these days but it is to hoodwink commoners to conduct their divisive jobs both overtly and covertly. The documentary states with conviction how any insensate job is done to flex the invincibility of Islamic fundamentalism and each such job earns patronage through millions of petro-dollar from Arabia.    

According to him, prior to the advent of Sheikh Hasina 159 anti-India terrorist camps used to exist in bangladesh. Those were under the direct supervision of Pakistani brains and became the main basis to operate terrorism in India. Hasina has devastated all these and all these have been included in Kabir’s in his latest documentary “The Ultimate Jihad.” The documentary also contains interviews of a Muslim youth (used by ISI in Pakistan as a pawn for terrorism) and Hafiz Sayed, infamous terrorist leader in Pakistan.

The documentary also contains the testimony of Irfan Ara, Saudi terrorist, that Rs. 65, 000 crores has been given to Islamic fundamentalists in South-East Asia. He also said that deployment of army remains the only way to save Hindus in Bangladesh.