Bangladesh doing more to fight Islamic Jihad than Mamata’s Bengal

This may shock many, but Sheikh Hasina’s Bangladesh seems more intent in curbing Islamic Jihad than Mamata Banerjee’s Bengal.  This is despite the fact that Bangladesh isn’t a great example of a State that protects its citizens against Islamic extremism.

Here is why.

Bangladesh has always been in news because of Jihadi terror targeting minorities on its soil.  On June 10 2016, a Hindu ashram inmate, Nityaranjan Pandey was hacked to death. On July 1, a Hindu priest, 70 years old Shyamonanda Das was hacked by machetes by three men on a motorcycle in Jhenaidah district, in Bangladesh. Before this, another Hindu priest was hacked to death in the same district.

More than 40 people have been killed in attacks in Bangladesh since February 2013.  Those killed include religious minorities (Hindus, Christians ) bloggers, academics, and gay rights activists (Read ) The number of those who killed in Islamic terror keeps going up with attacks like July 2016 Dhaka attack in which 29 people including 20 hostages (18  foreigners) were killed.

 

Multiple mobs of Muslims attacked Hindu temples and homes recently (Read )

Contrary to what experts and retired army officers think, Bangladesh Government denies any role of ISIS or Al-Qaida in these waves of attacks. It believes that is the work of local hard line Islamists groups. It is important to note that the Bangladesh Government acknowledges role of Islamists unlike our Bengal Government which denies any communal angle to incidents of mob violence against Hindus in the state.

Bangladesh has also been in news for the counter measures it has been taking against Islamic terror.  Bangladesh police detained about 900 people as a part of crackdown on militants after the series of terror attacks. They managed to kill the Dhaka terror attack planner (read ) In a police raid  called as Operation storm 26, nine militants were killed on July 26 ( read ) In  a series of other raids, the Bangladesh paramilitary Rapid Action force  killed 11 militants (read )

As is well known, in May 2016, Bangladesh executed Motiur Rehman Nizami, head of banned Jamaat-e-Islami party, after his conviction for genocide, rape, and massacres (read ) it has weathered the protests by Muslims against the execution.

What is happening in Mamata’s Bengal?

On January 29, 2015 in Kolkata’s suburb Usti more than 50 Hindu shops were ransacked, looted and gutted by jihadists. Police mostly watched as bombs were hurled at Hindus.  The victims were detained while attackers roamed free.  The media remained mute and so did CM Mamata Banerjee whose duty is to protect life of every citizen.

“While the situation for Hindus in Bangladesh is certainly dire, life has become increasingly difficult for Hindus in West Bengal, home to a Muslim-appeasing government and a breeding ground and safe haven for terrorists. For several years, West Bengal has suffered under apparent Muslim-planned riots designed to implement shariah, extract government concessions and grab more territory. “ (read )

In February 2015, The alleged abduction and rape of Tuktuki, a teen from rural West Bengal, by Muslim goons predictably failed to evoke media response and also that by the State Government of Bengal.  No prizes for guessing why.

“There are three points that need to be made in the context of Tuktuki Mandal’s tragedy. First, Hindu girls in their teens are being increasingly abducted and raped, or forced into marriage, by Muslim goons in those areas of West Bengal where there has been an extraordinary spike in the Muslim population, largely on account of illegal immigration from Bangladesh..” (read)

On 23rd April 2015, Muslim mobs in Falta (south 24 Paraganas District) unleashed large scale violence against Hindus. 50 Hindu houses and 10 shops were looted and damaged.  (Read )

On January 3 2016, 1.5 Lakh Muslims assembled near Kaliachak taxi stand. The mob blocked national highway, ransacked vehicles, burnt BSF van, and attacked the police station. The police ran away. The mob then destroyed and looted properties owned by Hindus. It molested Hindu women.  Despite this act of arson the Mamata government could arrest only nine and they could get bail since charges framed by police were not serious at all.  (Read)  All this happened despite the fact that Kamlesh Tiwari, who had allegedly said offensive things about the Prophet, had already been booked and arrested.

The fact is that in Bengal Police and BSF couldn’t protect themselves from the Muslim mob.

What has the Mamata Banerjee Government been doing? Has it been taking measures to prevent Jihadi violence or punish the culprits? No, her government has been doing the opposite.  It is turning a blind eye to growing Islamist violence and even encouraging the Jihadi terror elements.

 

Mamata Banerjee approved academic degrees of 10,000 unrecognized and Saudi funded madrasas and honorariums for Imams.

“In June of 2014, Mamata Banerjee made a highly questionable appointment, Rajya Sabha, to the upper house of the Indian Parliament.  Despite multiple warnings from the District Intelligence Bureau that had red-flagged him for instigating violence against Hindus, including alleged participation in the Kolkata and Canning riots and sheltering known terrorists, she selected Hassan Imran to serve as MP. Imran is a founder and self-admitted member of the radical student group, the Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), a recognized terrorist organization banned by the Indian government.“ (Read )

Pakistani gunsmiths trained locals in Bengal to manufacture guns used in Dhaka attack.

The AK-22 assault rifles made under the supervision of Pakistani gunsmiths at illegal arms manufacturing units in Malda (Bengal) were used in terror attack by Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) in Dhaka. This is based on the confessions made to NIA (National Investigation Agency) by one of the six terrorists arrested in connection to October 2 2014 Khagragarh blast in Bengal’s Burdwan District. The accidental blast had killed tow terrorists and revealed the existence of full-fledged explosives manufacturing units run by JMB that also carried our Dhaka attack.  The Mamata government of Bengal allowed such terrorist activities. (Read )

The Indo-Bangladesh border along Kaliachak (of the infamous Muslim mob attack on police station and BSF unit) Baishnavnagar in Malda is transit route for illegal arms, narcotics and Fake Indian Currency Notes. (Read )

Mamata Banerjee’s criticism of demonetization of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes is clearly not without a reason. The scrapping of old notes by PM Modi government must be hurting the Islamic terror operations in Bengal. The fact that Mamata Banerjee is willing to co-operate with even CPM (her arch rivals) and anyone willing to oppose demonetization is also very telling. TMC and Communists treat Muslims as their vote bank.  80% of fake currencies are sneaked through 172 Km border along Malda district (read )

Several districts of Bengal are known as terror hubs with bomb making activities going unchecked. There are no signs that the state government will do anything to punish the guilty.

The Bengal CM recently supported ‘Triple Talaq’  (read ) It is clear that for Mamata Banerjee vote bank politics is more important than gender justice and safety of its citizens.

Taslima Nasrin, the exiled Bengali writer from Bangladesh, couldn’t live in Kolkata. She was forced flee from Bengal following death threats. Mamata Banerjee’s Bengal continues to be in that state.

In our main stream media UP and Bihar are often painted as examples of lawlessness depending on political convenience of media owners. Bengal’s poor record in law and order gets shielded. The truth is that people in Bengal, particularly, Hindus face violence by Muslim mobs, emboldened by their rising numbers and a state government that lets them run riot -just like those in UP.

The Mamata government hasn’t performed its constitutional duty of preventing terror and protecting its citizens. Instead, it has shown a blind eye to Islamic extremism with an eye on Muslim vote bank. Mamata Banerjee is willing to cooperate with anyone who is ready to oppose gender-justice, counter-terror, anti-black money measures by Modi Government.

Clearly, Sheikh Hasina’s Bangladesh has done more for curbing Islamic Jihad than Mamata Banerjee’s Bengal.

This article was first published at: https://www.myind.net/bangladesh-doing-more-fight-islamic-jihad-mamatas-bengal#.dpuf

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‘Dangal’ in SP’s Yadav Family, Triple Talaq, and BJP in UP

The Dangal in Mulayam Singh’s Yadav clan and Samajwadi Party and Tata’s tussle with Cyrus Mistry have pushed everything else in the background. The US Presidential race between Trump and Hillary is in its decisive phase. The post ‘surgical strikes’ situation at LOC remains tense. BSF recently countered Pakistan’s transgression. The ISI spy ring involving Pakistan High Commission’s staffer has been busted. All these and equally important issues like Triple Talaq have been pushed into the background.

If newspaper headlines and news channels’ tickers reflected public mood or political realities, we would not have had Narendra Modi led BJP and NDA sweeping the 2014 polls. Had the criticism of PM Modi’s Pakistan policy in media been founded on facts and logic, the surgical strikes would not have happened. The financial meltdown of 2008 and Brexit also would not have happened.

About four months back, UP elections looked to be a difficult challenge for BJP. BJP had swept the Lok Sabha polls in 2014 with UP contributing a lion’s share to the tally. But subsequently, BJP had lost Bihar to the Mahagathabandhan of Lalu Yadav and Nitish Kumar. It was unable to counter the caste arithmetic and propaganda about reservations. In UP, the BJP couldn’t decide on a CM candidate. The party had been out of power for over a decade. Despite Amit Shah’s undeniable credentials as a great election manager the going seemed to be tough for BJP.  Read https://www.myind.net/elections-bjps-tough-road-ahead

In June, this author had argued that BJP needs to play to its strengths and not weaknesses like caste arithmetic. He had summed up the challenge as: “BJP is without an overarching emotive promise which can galvanize this fractured society to come out its nooks and crannies, to come together and vote for it”

Now there is a big shift in public mood.

The surgical strikes against Pakistan have resonated with people throughout the country cutting across sub identities like caste, language and religion. The Modi government and India’s brave Army fulfilled the fervent wish of every Indian ( Read https://www.myind.net/aftermath-uri-attacks-what-india-expects-pm-narendra-modi ) and the nation gave an overwhelming approval to the government and the army (Read https://www.myind.net/strategic-restraint-surgical-strikes-pakistans-terror-camps-what-next )

The Congress led opposition soon realized this and started doubting the ‘surgical strikes’ themselves. When this backfired, Congress claimed that surgical strikes had happened during the UPA regime too.  When this too didn’t impress people, it started telling PM Modi and BJP ‘not take political advantage of army’s success’.  These are sure signs that Congress and opposition have realized that they have lost credibility and considerable public support.

The Triple Talaq issue is now unraveling. The Modi government came out convincingly against continuation of this regressive practice under the pretext of religious freedom. PM Modi said “Can’t allow lives of Muslim women to be ruined by triple talaq” (read ).  He also said that this is not a Hindu-Muslim issue.  His government has framed this issue in terms of ‘compatibility with India’s constitution and gender justice’.

So far, the Samajwadi Party had assumed that Muslim votes would accrue in its account. The Mulayam-Akhilesh feud has left Akhilesh government doddering. Its election prospects now look much worse than before -whether the patch up happens or not. It is difficult to see how even its ‘own Yadavs’, leave alone Muslims, will feel assured enough to vote for it.

Mayawati’s BSP was ascending earlier. But BSP has been plagued by large scale attrition of senior leaders -some no doubt disgruntled by larger allocation to Muslim candidates.

The triple talaq issue is bound to make some Muslims think again. Those who are with Mullahs and Maulvis will remain opposed to the BJP. Out of the 18% share of Muslims in UP, 9% will be women. Even if half of them and some men rethink, we are talking about a probable swing of 4 to 5% away from parties which don’t oppose Triple Talaq.  Mayawati has told the Modi Government to leave Muslims alone -in other words let Muslim women suffer until the Mullahs see light. Her ‘target constituency of young Muslims’ are not going to be very convinced about her stand.  Her idea of attracting Brahmins is also going to be difficult. The Samajwadi Party is not in a position to take a stand on the issue and it may default to support for continuation of Triple Talaq. Congress is an insignificant player in UP. It is still hedging the issue. It would like to get Muslim votes, but it also is in a race to get Brahmin votes. This hedging is not going to make it more popular.

Coming on the back of surgical strikes, Modi government’s stand on Triple Talaq must have further cemented BJP’s core support base. In a multi-cornered election a 4 to 5 % swing of votes and consolidation of broad support bases will be decisive factors.

PM Modi has led the charge for BJP on Triple Talaq. His hugely popular Pakistan policy and credible development appeal are big strengths for the BJP.  The opposition parties, which so far relied on caste and religion vote banks, will find it tough to face the BJP.  It is for BJP to take advantage of confusion in the ranks of opposition parties and surge ahead.

 

Image Credits: ANI News

This article was first published at https://www.myind.net/dangal-sp-yadav-family-muslim-vote-bjp-rise#.dpuf

Trapped by Congress Ecosystem, RSS Punching Below Its Weight

The tamasha by Congress after the recent surgical strike is a stark reminder that the philosophy and agenda of our national development remains trapped by the Congress ecosystem. This ecosystem is a complex web of nodes and of favors and disfavors.

Congress ecosystem and its big lie

Apologists of Islamic extremism and terror form one node of this ecosystem. They rationalize various acts of gender injustice and terror as ‘resistance to oppression’ or ‘ must allow religious freedom’   or as in ‘it isn’t Islam at all’. The other node of this ecosystem is formed by the Left who paint Hinduism as a regressive and upper caste force but have no problem with brutal oppression of women, Muslims from other sects, and religious minorities in Islam dominated regions. The third node of the Congress ecosystem is that of a section of educated Indians who equate West with science and progress, prefer market economy, and have no problem in accepting Vatican certifying Teresa’s miracles and canonizing her. These nodes maintain connections with some media owners and journalists and artists through a system of ‘give and take’. The ‘connected’ journalists easily rationalize horrible violence and gender injustice.  The artists give a ‘humane’ face to Islamic terror and violence by producing movies with sympathetic storylines but they are very precise in linking any social ills to Hinduism when they produce other movies.

The ecosystem co-opts Jihadi, Evangelist, and Naxal forces to keep the pot boiling over.  It isn’t difficult to guess how they keep their wheels greased despite being out of power. They have their counterparts in media, institutions and governments the world over. They cooperate to keep any nationalist upsurge and mobilization in India on back foot. They oppose ISIS only as a symbolic gesture but turn a blind eye to JeM, JuD, LeT and other terror outfits.

There is something really very important that unites these forces. They are united in their agenda to propagate the lie that India was not a nation before the British ‘united it and gave it independence’ in 1947. This lie is the biggest stumbling block to asserting our true identity, claiming our great legacy and progressing to being a great nation again.

We, the majority of Indians who wish to see India and Indians prosper, have to face this disinformation onslaught all the time. Save some media web sites, TV channels and social media we too are trapped in the Congress ecosystem.  Even our Army isn’t spared by the Congress ecosystem.

Now guess who is saying what is given below.

” Humanity can live a happy, peaceful and beautiful life only when we understand and follow the principles of loving and respectfully accepting the plurality inherent in nature; move with a sense of coordination, cooperation, empathy and dialogue and; adopt the path of non-violence and constitutional middle path instead of practicing unilateral fanaticism and violence in our practices in matters related to ideological and religious conduct. “

” Leaving everything related to the nation’s future in the hands of government is not going to prove very effective. All prevailing policy systems across the world have proven themselves as incomplete and half baked visions. The system in our country too has been suffering from the same problem since our independence “

“The resurgence of a self reliant, strong, prosperous and secure nation, giving benevolent and flourishing leadership to the world, is possible only when an egalitarian, organized and enlightened society with self esteem strives towards this end.”  Imported words like ‘inclusive’, ‘secular’, and ‘tolerance’ pale insignificant when compared to the brilliance of the all encompassing world view and a vision for development.

“It is this self-centered collective greed that gives rise to exploitation, suppression, violence and fanaticism. Precisely, operating on the basis of such selfish interests by the western countries is responsible for a new incarnation of terror and fundamentalism that has emerged today in West Asia in the form of ISIS terrorizing the whole world. Can you guess who is diagnosing terror so well?

“We will have to drive out even the smallest of the remnants of our caste based, regional and linguistic egos which breed such prejudices.  Each one of us must test each of our act, whether big or small, on the simple ground that each member of my great Hindu society, and each son/daughter of Mother Bharat, is my own brother and sister. We must ensure that each of our temples, cremation ground and community water source must remain open to. We should ensure that all should participate in all functions, celebrations as well as festivals of great heroes and personalities. ….” Can this come from allegedly ‘Brahminical’, or an ‘upper caste dominated’, or ‘anti-Dalit’ or a ‘divisive’ organization?

“For sustainable development, (our) philosophy encourages least use of energy, maximum employment, sensitivity towards environment, ethics, and the wholesome approach to agriculture. It suggests a decentralized and self reliant economic and industrial order.” Isn’t this model of sustainable development better than western model of replacing one kind of (ever growing) consumption by another?  Can you guess who is articulating this?

All the above are quotes from Vijayadashami speeches in 2014, 2015, 2016 given by RSS Sarasanghachalak Dr Mohan Bhagwat. (Please see references 1, 2, and 3 below)

Could you guess correctly?

RSS vision and actions

Do you see hate towards any religion in these speeches? Do you see any upper caste hegemony? Do you see anything anti-modern? What you see is desire to be a healthy society and a nation. What you see is an examination of what is good for us and what isn’t -irrespective of whether it is modern or ancient.

Dr Bhagwat draws upon our Hindu civilization’s timeless (Sanatana) knowledge and wisdom enunciated by greats like Swami Vivekananda and Yogi Arvind and rishi, muni, and sages from ancient times to tell us what we need to do to fulfill Bharat’s role as guiding light to the world troubled with war and avarice, by arrogance and fear, by disease and dispossession.

RSS has indeed backed up its vision by actions in some areas. RSS is well known for its relief activities during natural disasters like earthquakes and floods. It has been doing a lot of developmental and educational work in Adivasi areas and in eastern states through organizations like Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram.  (Reference 4)

But what do we read in our main stream media? What is the perception among educated Indians and our current ‘thought leaders’?

From Dr. Bhagwat’s recent speech our media picked two points. They ‘noticed’ that Swayamsevaks were wearing the new uniform with full trousers. They also juxtaposed Dr. Bhagwat’s defense of ‘gaurakshaks’ with PM Modi’s criticism -leaving out that both said essentially the same thing. Both emphasized need to abide by the law.

Did we hear or read in main stream media about RSS’ work in Madhya Bharat for ending discrimination against Dalits in surveyed villages as mentioned by Dr Bhagwat in his recent speech? No.

There is only one entity which has been subjected to more sustained and vicious abuse and vilification than PM Narendra Modi -it is Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi have all maligned RSS. Minor functionaries of Congress keep repeating lies about RSS.  Here is a short list abuses used to defame RSS – ‘killer of Mahatma Gandhi, divisive force, communal, instigator of communal riots, Brahminical, against minorities, regressive and fundamentalist, behind saffron terror, like Islamic State’

A section of educated Indians thinks that RSS is rooted in past. This is the age in which film stars and sports persons become our ‘thought leaders’ due to their audience pull. How many of them stand up for Hindus of Kashmir, Kairana and those in Pakistan? How does it stack with their alacrity in supporting Pakistani artists?

One can and one must read Dr. Bhagwat’s speeches (see references below) in order get a full import of what RSS is and what it is trying to do. But even the most diligent of us can get swamped by the prevalent disinformation onslaught.

So, why is RSS allowing the battle of perception against it and against Hindus?

This is the age of disinformation.  Most large media are controlled or funded by political, religious (Non-Hindu), or business interests. Their information mix consists of ‘curated facts’, half-lies or total lies. The mix is tailored to the interests of those who control or fund.

That’s the reason we read only about ‘trousers or gaurakshaks’.

That’s the reason Durgapuja is banned in the West Bengal, where it is major religious festival of Hindus. It’s like banning Ganesh Visarjan in Maharashtra.

That’s the reason not just RSS but ‘Hindu’ is still a ‘regressive’ ‘parochial’ word in Hindustan, but a Maratha morcha is a sign of ‘awakening’

RSS has strong philosophical foundation rooted in our Dharmic civilization. It has a very large and disciplined organization.  Can’t it project itself better? Can’t it fight disinformation with information?  Can’t it do whatever it takes to alter the public discourse?

Caste politics is preventing Hindu unity

Jats, Patidars, and now the Marathas want caste based reservations.  We are getting into a bigger mess due to percentage games for political gains by various parties. BJP too has played along. If RSS wants to eradicate castes, will reservations help or hinder its work? Who will tell them that their own caste leaders have let them down? Who will tell them that clinging to caste identity will keep them backward.  Can’t RSS mobilize public opinion about futile nature of these demands.  How will it unite Hindus?

We hear that Bihar elections were lost ‘due to Dr. Bhagwat’s proposal to form an impartial and independent panel to examine the current system of reservation’. Whether the analysis is right or wrong, it shows that we remain trapped by the Congress ecosystem.

BJP threw in towel on reservations some time back.  RSS too is trapped by the Congress Ecosystem.

RSS and BJP workers are getting killed

Read about this recent incident . Many such killings have been going on in Kerala, Karnataka, and West Bengal, and UP. It is the job of the respective state government to bring culprits to book and to protect its citizens. If a state government is failing the Center shouldn’t be a mute spectator.

But shouldn’t RSS use its considerable strength to put pressure for necessary actions?

RSS is punching well below its weight

A vanquished Congress with just 44 MPs is often able to put Modi Government on the back foot and RSS in defensive mode. It continues to use its ecosystem of favors and disfavors despite being out of power for over two years.

Alert and nationalist social media activists and a handful of web sites are the only counter-weights to the public discourse heavily skewed against Hindus and in favor of India’s enemies.

The fact is that RSS is punching well below its weight. It has huge resources and it can get more if it wishes. It may have to rethink its model ‘we are an organization for character building and our Swayamsevaks should do what is necessary for country on their own’.

One reason RSS is punching well below it weight is that it is trapped by the Congress ecosystem and it is kept in defensive mode.

Only once in a while we seem to break out of the Congress trap. It happened recently after surgical strikes against Pakistan based terror camps. It happened once before, at the time of 2014 elections.

We need to break out of the Congress trap permanently.

If RSS doesn’t take a lead in this, who will? 

RSS project in Madhya Pradesh for empowering Dalits is welcome. It may be a sign that it is indeed rethinking its model. Modi ji’s promise of Congress Mukta Bharat won’t get fulfilled unless the Congress ecosystem’s trap is broken.

Time RSS starts using its intellectual and organizational strengths. Time it launches more wide ranging projects.  Perhaps it is a better way to build further strength and breaking out of the Congress ecosystem’s trap.

Time we break free.

References

(1) Vijayadashami 2014 speech by Dr Mohan Bhagwat

(2) Vijayadashami 2015 speech by Dr Mohan Bhagwat

(3) Vijayadashami 2016 speech by Dr Mohan Bhagwat

(4) A summary of RSS work

(5) Battle for Congress Mukta Bharat is far from over

Image Credits: ANI News

– This article was first published at https://www.myind.net/india-needs-break-free-congress-ecosystem-progress#.dpuf

Pakistan: What next after surgical strikes?

(Image source myind.net)

Indian Military lived up to the mandate given by PM Modi and his government to protect India against infiltration early today (September 29) morning in a stunning surgical strike 3 Kms inside LOC with Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. It destroyed 7 terror launch pads and eliminated 2 soldiers and about 38 terrorists who were getting ready to cross over to India. (source)

Indians have been angry with Pakistan for its terror war against India through attacks like 26/11, Patahnkot and Uri -just to name a few.  They expressed their anger and hope that their Government would match words by deeds (Read).

As the details of the daring operation started coming out Indians took to social media pouring out their joy and expressing their pride in their defense forces. In equal measure, they are expressing their happiness about having a real Prime Minister and his capable government who walk their talk.

For a while, Modi Government gave an impression to the world that it was banking on diplomatic efforts and  communication campaigns to deal with Pakistan. It described Pakistan as ‘Ivy League of terror’ and ‘following a toxic curriculum’ (Read ), and ‘exporter of terror’. It invited Pakistan Government ‘for a race in poverty reduction and development instead of violence’. It ordered reviews of Indus Water Treaty and MFN status of Pakistan. It pulled out of SAARC meeting in Pakistan. It started conducting naval exercises in Arabian Sea. All this, while Pakistan continued to violate ceasefire and to gather next batches of terrorists for crossing over to India. Pakistan may have thought it could continue and get away with its duplicity.

Even the world powers thought India will not escalate the situation beyond rhetoric.

May be not. Calls from John Kerry Secretary of State and Susan Rice, NSA of US to their counter parts in India may have been about these surgical strikes. It is possible that Modi Government kept USA in loop over the developments on ground.

There are reasons to believe that today’s surgical strike isn’t one-off event. Ever since assuming power in 2014, the Modi Government has been following a long term plan. On one level, the plan consists of offers to talk with Pakistan. Modi’s  impromptu visit to Pakistan was at this level.

At another level, India continued its diplomatic efforts to isolate and encircle Pakistan. Modi Government’s consistent efforts in documenting Pakistan’s role in various terror attack and pacts with Afghanistan are a part of this.  It is trying to contain China, Pakistan’s staunch ally,  through counterweights of US, Japan, and Vietnam at the same time showing willingness to make some concessions to it. It is trying to consolidate its friendship with Russia. It is using its trade and arms purchase power to extract help from various countries.

While doing all above and more, Modi Government has worked on our defense preparedness. It sorted out One Rank One Pension issue which was a big issue for our armed forces. When PM Modi told Arnab Goswami of Time Now that ‘our job is to talk (with Pakistan) the defense forces’ job is to protect our country on our borders’ it wasn’t rhetoric. He had articulated his doctrine in dealing with Pakistan. Not many got it right. Not many get it right even now.

Today’s surgical strike is just an element of this new doctrine.

PM Modi recently asked Pakistan in his Kozikode speech ” Is PoK is with you now? Is Bangladesh with you now? Sindh is with you. Balochistan is with you. But are things right there? Your leaders are making you fools in the name of Kashmir.”

He asked Pakistanis to think about which country got independence in 1947. PM Modi says one day the time will come when Pakistan citizens will take to the streets against terrorism. (Read )

It is unlikely that Paksitan will learn a lesson and stop terror. So does this ‘new doctrine’ include ‘an all out war’ with Pakistan? Probably not.

What next after the surgical strikes?

In Pakistan, its powerful army gets a chance to overthrow Sharif Government calling it ‘incompetent’ in dealing with India. There might be a military coup in Pakistan.

In appealing to people of Pakistan Modi is helping Pakistan’s endgame along. Pakistan is an unnatural and unstable state which can’t take care of its own people. It is propped up by external forces which are being used by Military and  Terror armies to draw sustenance. Pakistan’s so called ‘Islamic Identity’ hasn’t worked -it lost the then East Bengal, Baluchistan is raring to go, and Sindh wants to go too (Read https://www.myind.net/pakistan-has-endgame-begun )

One can expect protests in Baluchistan and Sindh to grow. There will be more efforts to contrast Pakistan’s lack of development with India’s progress and growing stature. There will be efforts to overcome Pakistani’s indoctrination of ‘Hate India’.  One can expect more unrest among common Pakistanis all over that country.

Modi’s  diplomatic efforts will be for exposing the illegitimacy of Pakistan. Like he reached out to Pakistani people, his communications will be addressed to citizens of world to build public pressure on their respective governments to stop helping a terrorist state. A military coup will turn world’s public opinion more against Pakistan.

PM Modi is likely to use trade diplomacy and economic means to persuade world powers. There may be efforts to show CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) to be unviable because of internal unrest and there may be an offer of a package deal with China.  A well governed India will be positioned as an attractive partner to China. Indian Navy’s overseeing of Arabian Sea will also be leveraged.

America’s real politic revolves around trade and arms trade. Everything else is mere posturing. So does many western powers’ and Russia’s. India’s defense requirements are huge and an economically strong India can pay. Contrast this with Pakistan which needs American aid to buy a batch F-16 fighter aircrafts.

Muslim countries of Gulf which didn’t help Muslim refugees from Syria are unlikely to help Pakistan much more, give that their economies need rebuilding after the reverse oil shock (of falling prices)

Like Uri was seized as a tipping point with respect to international opinion for our surgical strikes, there will come a tipping point in average Pakistani’s opinion about their own government and India. There may be some covert strikes in Pakistan. One of the goals of such strikes will be to safeguard nuclear weapons from terrorists and rogue elements. World powers will surely have stakes here.

As this author said before, Pakistan’s endgame has begun. PM Modi will hasten it slowly (as they say one should). It keeps collateral damage low and improves chances of success. We should build on our strengths, learn strategic thinking, and have patience to achieve our goals. Let us support the Prime Minister by doing our part.

This article was first published by myind.net here

A silent revolution is going on in India’s noisy democracy

India is leapfrogging into future, ahead of advanced economies. It has been charting a unique course. It opted for democracy and universal franchise. It missed the manufacturing bus but it took the services flight. It ushered the green revolution and milk revolution. It started with a government dominated economy and switched a market economy. It has now taken up unfinished work in manufacturing and agriculture. It has followed a bewilderingly zigzag course.  It is becoming increasingly clear that India is getting its act together under the leadership of PM Modi and his government.

India’s Aadhar has entered record books as the world’s largest identity database. ISRO’ satellite launching capabilities have attracted commercial inquiries from some countries. Our UPI (United Payment Interface) technology is being patented. The world sees India as an island of growth and a responsible global citizen. But much more is happening.

A silent revolution is going on in India’s noisy democracy. So silent that it easy to miss it amid our politics of protests.

India’s capacity to transform itself is getting better.

It is well known that PM Modi is a big advocate of technology. But we need to take time to understand the scope of what is going on.  No other big society or civilization is absorbing technology in so many fundamental ways. It is so pervasive that it is not merely about technology anymore.

Indian State is modernizing. India’s leaders are driving changes from top. That’s not all. Indians are changing their ideas about themselves. Technology is coming to aid of our democracy.

By leaps and bounds

People have got used to convenience and speed of online shopping, online ticketing and internet banking. Gone are the days of cheques lost in transit and physical share certificates not getting transferred due to mismatch of signatures. Certificates of birth, education and documents like vehicle registration, driving license, and passport will soon exist only in online form via the Digilocker. When fingerprint and IRIS scanners become ubiquitous through smart phones and terminals, signatures and paper copies of identity cards etc will be replaced by Aadhar based authentication.  Already, a payment bank and a telecom operator have launched their e-KYC based on Aadhar. No Indian will be excluded from this convenience since almost everyone has Aadhar identity.

 

A unique 12-digit code assures every Indian that what is meant for her will reach her and no one else can impersonate her. When voter cards get linked to Aadhar and when Voting machines get equipped with scanners bogus voting will be gone.

This may take time but people, who by now have good sense of what technology can do, will start demanding the above. They will no longer be content in receiving subsidy benefits in their MUDRA or other bank accounts.  They will want all that is possible.

Today shipment of a parcel by courier or even a passport being issued can be tracked online. The Supreme Court has directed all states to upload FIRs (First Information Reports) within stipulated time limits. When FIRs are online, people will surely demand to know progress on them. Tomorrow, when they file a police complaint they will want to track its handling by police on their phones.

Similar changes and demands for quicker and quality services meant for personal businesses and small, medium, and large enterprises will be there. Quicker registration, transparent approvals, consolidated returns and their processing will be demanded by businesses. Internet banking and credit and debit cards will be supplemented by UPI (United Payment Interface) for person to person transfer of money which will be of great help to personal businesses who can’t afford payment gateways for cost and procedural reasons.

The UPI adds the last mile convenience to MUDRA and other types of bank accounts seeded with Aadhar for paying and receiving payments and for obtaining or repaying loans.  Imagine craftsmen and artisans who don’t have credit card terminals or payment gateways selling their wares online (thru e-commerce platforms) or offline and getting paid instantly through the UPI. Imagine farmers selling their produce via the National Agriculture Market and getting paid via their UPI accounts. Imagine budding authors and artists selling their works and getting paid via UPI.

The GST (Goods and Services Tax) implementation has begun. GST will run on its network called the GSTN. The GSTN will be a super database that captures all business transactions involving goods and services provided from one corner of county to the other. GSTN will help to bring convenience to tax payer businesses and individuals and also to the tax collectors. Furthermore, GSTN’s Big Data that captures Indian economy in almost real time can be leveraged for policy making and spotting specific interventions needed. The possibilities of what can be done are huge.

Digitization of land records based on GIS (Geographical Information System) mapping is going on. If this is integrated with authenticated property ownership databases of local and state governments, a revolution similar to Aadhar can be brought to property and land transactions. This will enable genuine and faster real estate transactions, reduction in black money generation, and reduction in litigation.

India is moving from data deficient state to data rich state.

The ‘data riches’ of India and demands by people will create new business opportunities in private and government sector.  These will range from personal services to non-intrusive detection of tax evasion and other illegal activities through data analytics as needed by the governments.

Digital Infrastructure

All these services will ride on India’s vast mobile and fixed line network that is getting upgraded to 4G and the National Optical Fiber Network (NOFN). The NOFN plans to bring internet broadband to 600,000 village gram panchayats. Though this program is much behind schedule, there is no doubt that Modi Government will revisit the program’s technology strategy for speedy implementation.

India’s own GPS (Global Positioning System)  called GAGAN (GPS-Aided Geo Augmented Navigation) has been launched. It will provide high precision information of latitude, longitude, altitude, velocity and time of vehicles or devices equipped with GPS receivers. This will bring all round improvement in navigation and tracking on land, in air, and on seas. For example, it is expected to significantly reduce the time interval that must be kept between successive takeoff or landing of aircrafts. This will have direct impact of airports’ capacity to handle traffic.

Under the National Supercomputing Mission a supercomputing grid of over 70 high performance facilties will power research in academic and R & D for solving multi-disciplinary problems using tools like Artificial Intelligence and big data analytics.

Citizens will demand better services and better laws because they now know it is possible

As citizens’ taste power of information and technology, their demands will cover bigger and bigger circles of public services like town planning and land use, construction permits, roads, sanitation, providing birth and death certificates, law and order services and many other services provided by local, state, and central governments. Many of these services are already provided online but citizens will demand speed and quality because they know it is possible.

Authentication (of people, entities, and properties) and capturing transactions and movements will result in better surveillance and prevention of crime. It will also help in faster investigation and better prosecution and conviction rates. Law enforcement will receive a big boost.

Today India has abundance of laws and a huge deficit of their implementation. This will change. As laws start getting implemented their flaws will come to surface and citizens will demand better laws.

If you listen in on social media you will find that our Judiciary is being criticized for what are seen as its opaque, feudal, whimsical, quixotic and glacial ways.  Demand for fairness and speed will create public pressure on our courts too.  In future, we should be to able track repeated postponements of court hearings. We should be able to see if courts follow their own norms. We should be able to have ‘distance trials’ of at least of civil suits and avoid repeated visits to courts. We should see judges using modern tools of searching legal databases and coming to quicker and fairer judgments. We should see much more from our courts.

Modi Government is driving sweeping changes top down. It is showing a glimpse of what is possible. The possibilities are enormous and Indians want it all.  They will demand more and more. For this, they will have to participate more.

 

Challenges

India is now on a different course. The inevitable missteps and hurdles will have to be overcome. There will be concerns about privacy and data thefts. These will have to addressed. India’s enemies may resort to  cyber warfare (read https://www.myind.net/scorpene-leaks-hurt-india-india-ready-cyberwar ). India’s digital economy will have to be made resilient to cyber attacks.  We will need technical, managerial, leadership pools of high caliber.

Technology can be a binding force or it can unleash breakaway forces. Therefore we need a strong cultural firmament and modern practices based on our Dharmic principles to hold this all together.

All such challenges will have to be overcome.

Yet, it is evident that India is leapfrogging ahead of advanced economies through pervasive use of technology in governance and public services. Indians are switching from being beggars of State to being participative and being demanding citizens.  This is a massive change. The world hasn’t seen anything like it.

(This article was first published by myind.net here: https://www.myind.net/silent-revolution-going-indias-noisy-democracy#.dpuf  Image source: myind.net )

The Scorpene leaks: Is India ready for cyber war?

The  massive leaks of ‘signature data’ of six Scorpene submarines’ to be supplied to Indian Navy by DCNS, a company two thirds owned by the French Government, has rocked our defense establishment. The news of the data leak was published by ‘The Australian’.

Submarines are vital parts of any modern navy because of their ability to sneak underwater and strike. Stealth capabilities are essential for a submarine’s sneak and surprise attacks. When a submarine moves it emits engine and propeller noise, creates acoustic waves underwater, and emit infra read (heat) and other electromagnetic radiation.  Every submarine has characteristics patterns of the above signals. A submarine’s presence, location, and movement can be determined if its ‘signatures’ are known.

If ‘signatures’ of the Scorpenes meant for Indian Navy have fallen in enemy hands, their stealth capabilities are practically nullified.

‘The Australian’ reported (source ) that

“The leaked DCNS data details the secret stealth capabilities of the six new Indian submarines, including what frequencies they gather intelligence at, what levels of noise they make at various speeds and their diving depths, range and endurance – all sensitive information that is highly classified. The data tells the submarine crew where on the boat they can speak safely to avoid ­detection by the enemy. It also discloses magnetic, electromagnetic and infra-red data as well as the specifications of the submarine’s torpedo launch system and the combat system.”

Ascertaining the truth

The veracity of the leaked data is being ascertained, but the fact is that not just India, but Australia, Malaysia, Chile, and Russia are worried about the leaks of sensitive information related to their defense purchases from DCNS which are part of the leaked data.

It is quite likely that the India-bound Scorpene submarines’ stealth capabilities are severely compromised as per these posts in The Quint , Quartz  and Livefist Defense

On the other hand, Vice Admiral (Retired) Arun Kumar Singh says the leaked information would be commercial in nature and that INS Kalvari’s (one of the Scorpenes) noise ranging trials -which help pinpoint its audio fingerprint or signature -hasn’t been done yet. So according to Vice Admiral Arun Kumar Singh there is little possibility our Scorpene ‘signatures or ‘fingerprints’ falling into wrong hands.  (Source )

India’s Defense Ministry and Indian Navy’s experts will assess the extent of damage to Indian Navy’s preparedness levels over next a couple of decades and will decide what all needs to be done to contain it.

In the worst case scenario, Indian Navy faces a setback of a decade of efforts.

Was it a data theft or a hack?

‘The Australian’ further reports that the Scorpene data was ‘written’ in France for India in 2011 and was possibly removed from France by a former French Navy officer, a DCNS subcontractor. The data then was taken to a company to in Southeast Asia for a regional Navy. It was passed a third party to another company in the region before being sent on a data disk by regular mail.

From the above it appears that it was a data ‘theft’ by an insider and not a ‘hack’ as stated by Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar: “The Navy Chief has been asked to analyze as to what exactly has been leaked,” Parrikar told reporters today. “This came to my knowledge at 12 midnight. It looks like a case of hacking,” Parrikar said, adding that the, “first step is to identify if it is related to us.” (Source )

There is a critical difference between a theft and a hack. In modern digital world, a hack doesn’t need any physical access to a factory or a dockyard, design and engineering office, or a laboratory. Hackers can breach target computer systems from anywhere in the world and not just access data but they also trigger mala fide operations.

India’s preparedness for cyber warfare

Countries like China are developing massive cyberwar capabilities like espionage, intellectual property thefts, and decapacitating enemy operations.  For example, M. K. Narayanan, India’s then National Security Adviser, said his office and other government departments were targeted on December 15, (2010) the same date that US companies reported cyber attacks from China. (Source )

The successive Congress governments have undermined India’s defense preparedness in not just conventional military warfare but it also in cyber warfare.

If Scorpene data theft can cause so much damage, the consequences of cyber warfare can only be apocalyptic.  

Not much information on India’s cyber war readiness is available. One hopes that India’s defense preparedness plans include strong cyber warfare capabilities.

 

This article written by me was first published by myind.net here https://www.myind.net/scorpene-leaks-hurt-india-india-ready-cyberwar#.dpuf

The only political solution in Kashmir

What troubles NC, Congress, and Communists is the loss of power. This is their problem all over India. In J & K, they get active support from Pakistan. There lies the rub.

(This article written by me was first published on myind.net here on August 25, 2016 )

Our security forces continue their grim battles against Pakistan supported separatist stone throwers in some parts of Kashmir. They aren’t just battling the violent mobs. They are battling our politicians from Congress, NC and other parties whose main concern seems to be the use of pellet guns. These politicians are unmoved by large number of deaths of our security men.

Senior politicians like Omar Abdullah have no answer to the question how should security forces deal with stone throwing mobs -they don’t want guns, they don’t want pellet guns. They seem to say -do away with security forces, except of course their personal security cover.

Ever since the all party meeting on Kashmir, the air is thick with the talk of political solution to Kashmir. Omar Abdullah wants it. The Kashmir Congress Chief G A Mir wants it. CPM also wants it.

Even the venerable Supreme Court has advised a ‘political solution’.

But what is the political solution to the Kashmir issue?

No one has suggested any formulation of a potential political solution. And since our main stream media don’t ask tough questions to anyone who is opposed to Modi Government, we can only guess what they mean by a political solution.

 

To the above opposition parties: A ‘political solution’ might mean any combination of the following:

1. Remove army. Let police handle local law and order. It is easier to browbeat police to let terrorists and criminals escape.

2. No pellet guns. No normal guns. Use lathis to deflect stones being hurled at you. AK 47’s and bombs are the prerogative of the terrorists only.

3. Kashmir has autonomy under Art 370. That is not enough. Let it secede from India. But Indian State must fund expenses of Kashmir’s ruling dynasties and their fellow politicians.

4. Development promised by Modi and PDP-BJP governments is not what Kashmir people want. They don’t care about education, jobs, and infrastructure. Their main concern is what will happen to their beloved politicians and separatist leaders. Pakistan and China are better for their human rights.

5. Until the above “Dream State” is achieved, ask Mehbooba to resign. Send BJP packing.  Give us the power in Kashmir.

It is interesting to know that the lone voice against this chorus of ‘political solution’ comes from the democratically elected Chief Minister of J & K, Mehbooba Mufti. She said,

“Kashmiris are not stone-pelters: 95% people are innocent but suffer due to selfish 5%” (source ) she then appealed to the center to take care of the 95% who love peace and harmony.

It is good that the PDP’s partner BJP is letting Mehbooba do the talking.

There lies the rub. What troubles NC, Congress, and Communists is the loss of power. This is their problem all over India. In J & K, they get active support from Pakistan.

They can’t countenance a democratically elected government cooperating with center for development and for eliminating terrorists like Burhan Wani.  Their masters won’t allow it.

What does one make of PM Modi receiving a memorandum from Abdullah and others? He said, ” All political parties should come together to find a solution” (source ) He has also said that ‘doors are open for dialogue…and for solution within the framework of the Constitution”

Now any solution must be via the State Government of J & K as per the constitution. The PM seems to be telling “let’s talk (you talk) but I am going to go by the Constitution. So should you. Let a democratically elected State Government do its job. Go back to your barracks”

In the meanwhile, note that the CPRF has submitted to J&K HC that alterative to pellet guns will be worse (real guns) ”

“Pellet guns were introduced in 2010 as an accepted weapon of riot control,” it said, “In case this [pellet shotgun] is withdrawn, the CRPF would have no recourse in extreme situations but to open fire with rifles, which may cause more fatalities.”  (source)

 

The Center and the State Governments have a lot to do -arrest the spiral of violence, let law rule and to strengthen security operations substantially for prevention, detection, and elimination of trouble makers. As the PM himself told the J & K delegation, “development alone can’t solve all problems” (Read https://www.myind.net/burhan-wani-and-chinks-indias-armor-police-judiciary-and-media )

The Center and the State Governments also need to send a convincing message that no power can cause any further partition of India and that the might of Indian people and State will come down heavily on those who support such antinational activities or indulge in them.

For now, let Abdullah and his co-delegates be happy that the PM gave them 75 minutes, received their memorandum, and that he did not mention stone pelting unlike what FM Arun Jaitley did.

The only ‘political solution’ to Kashmir issue is to let the respective governments, which have been formed through political processes of elections, do their jobs.

– See more at: https://www.myind.net/national-conference-and-congress-are-not-able-cope-loss-power-kashmir#.dpuf