Thursday 25 April 2024

On The Recent Islamophobic Speech of Prime Minister of India – Ten Questions To Attorney General For India, R. Venkataramani


Respected Sir,


1.           Have you thought about the infamous election speech delivered by the Prime Minister of India in Banswara, Rajasthan on Sunday, 21 April 2024?


2.           Are you outraged over the Prime Minister’s blatantly Islamophobic speech?


3.           Do you agree that it violates The Model Code of Conduct?


4.           Do you agree that it violates Section 123(3) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951?


5.           Do you agree that it appeals to communal feelings and constitutes a Hate Crime?


6.           Are you aware that a large number of complaints have been filed by individuals/ civil society organizations/ political parties against this speech of the P.M. with the Election Commission of India (ECI); as also the Police Commissioners in Delhi and Rajasthan amongst other places?


7.           Has the Government of India taken your opinion on this issue?  If so, what has been your stance?


8.           Since the ECI and the police department have not taken any action; and the judiciary is beyond approach during this period of election, would you like to rise to the occasion and fulfil your constitutional duty and make your own stance clear to the Prime Minister?


9.           Do you share this wisdom that with the Prime Minister’s speech and the accompanying hate campaign against the Muslim community, the social fabric of society could get ruptured paving the way for a civil disorder?


10.       Do you agree that the consequences for these developments would mean suffering on a large scale?


The Attorney General for India, a Constitutional body, stands as a pillar of the country’s legal system. Your silence on these questions would only mean acquiescence.


Thank you,

Yours sincerely,

P.S. Sahni

Member, PIL Watch Group


Monday 22 April 2024

Were Delhi Chief Minister Kejriwal To Die In Tihar Jail For Deficient Treatment, A Murder Case Against Indian Home Minister Would Be In Order




P.S. Sahni


Kejriwal has accused authorities at Tihar prison and Enforcement Directorate (ED) of depriving him of medication (Insulin) and of lying to a Delhi Court that he was intentionally eating high sugar foods (mangoes, sweets) to have his blood sugar levels raised.


The lowest depths to which court proceedings were allowed to continue – without admonition from the Special Judge – can be seen from the fact that it was the ED. which was submitting the details of Kejriwal’s diet. The Special Judge did not object to ED arguing at length on medical issues. In fact, jail authorities are not supposed to inform ED about Kejriwal’s diet.


Besides Type II diabetes patients are prescribed mango (150 Gms) as it has a low glycaemic index. The Chief Minister could also take sweets too, within the prescribed amount. These items are not banned for diabetic patients. In fact, the court proceedings have sent a wrong and un-scientific message to over hundred million diabetics in India. ED’s statements are at par with Baba Ramdev’s opinion about allopathy – highly condemnable.


The real issue raised by the INDIA Bloc parties about the electoral bond scam indulged in by the Modi government is being sought to be side-tracked. Kejriwal’s court proceedings are being manipulated through projection of Kejriwal as a cheat who eats mangoes, sweets in jail to get his blood sugar levels raised; as this may get him bail on medical grounds. Kejriwal’s blood sugar levels have ranged from 250 mg/dL to 320 mg/dL during the day and he has reportedly 3 spikes. His fasting sugar is 160–200.


Indeed 1400 million Indians are witnessing a slow motion ‘cold-blooded murder’ of an INDIA Bloc leader for daring to expose corruption in high places. The old messy way of physical police encounters in public streets are a passé.  

Saturday 20 April 2024

“Is Palestine Burning?”




P. S. Sahni


[Benjamin Netanyahu asked the Chief of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) at the War Cabinet Meeting somewhere in Circa 2027, May 1st.]


IDF Chief: Sir, we have killed over 200,000 Palestinians so far. Worse, Hamas is alive and kicking; besides our intelligence reports indicate that it had managed to dig a tunnel over 240 feet deep in the Negev Desert, roughly thirteen km south-east of Dimona city. A suicide squad of Hamas fighters have with them about one million pounds of high explosives laid 100 feet beneath the underground facility directly below the nuclear installations!   


Netanyahu: How could it happen right under our nose? Intelligence failure again? Collusion?


IDF Chief: Permit me to present a holistic view. The air space over the Dimona facility is closed to all aircrafts and the area around it is heavily guarded and fenced off. Constructed in 1958 with French assistance, it underwent a major expansion in 2021. Air defenses protect the facility and are full proof. True, it is vulnerable to attacks from Iran, in October-November 2012 Hamas fired rockets at Dimona. Also, in July 2014 Hamas again fired rockets towards the area surrounding the facility. Yes, even as late as April 2021, a Syrian surface-to air missile landed in the vicinity of the place. All along we have been worried about Hamas using its artillery rockets to shell the Dimona reactor. Dimona is approximately 80 km away from the closest point to the Gaza Strip.


Just to recapitulate that in February 2008 two Hamas fighters crossed from Hebron, in the West Bank and reached Dimona in the south.  The separation barrier could not really protect us. That’s the truth.


All along we were aware of the capabilities of Hamas fighters to use air and ground routes to strike. In all fairness we were able to protect the nuclear facility at Dimona from 1958 till date.


Ultra Right-Wing Member: So, you did not keep the possibility of construction of a deep tunnel by Hamas to reach the Dimona facility? The whole world is aware that Hamas has constructed a 500 km long tunnel network in the small area of Gaza Strip. Why, then, the complacency? And now you present us with a fait accompli.


IDF Chief: You recall that a technician, Mordechai Vanunu who worked at the Dimona Reactor and had defected to the UK in 1986 where he made public the details of the secret nuclear reactor and the buildings underneath it. Remember that Hezbollah was established in 1982; and Hamas in 1987. A Hezbollah operative got in touch with a French civil engineer and learnt about a long underground tunnel extending from Dimona reactor to a point 100 yards away from the Israel-Gaza Strip border. The French had constructed this tunnel in the 1960s; it was to function as a mass quarantine centre to escape the ill-effects of radiation. The tunnel never got to be used and was all but forgotten.


Scapegoating can be left for a future date. Let us first ensure our very own survival. Permit me to present the whole issue threadbare. In the first place Israel has never officially accepted to the international community that it has a Dimona reactor. Secondly, we are not a signatory to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. If Hamas is able to use the explosives we have had it. We will face the embarrassment that Israel has cheated the whole world since 1958 about its nuclear reactor. Worse, Hamas – whom we have managed to project successfully as a terror group rather than a freedom fighter organization – would be credited with being instrumental in letting the world know about our secret nuclear program. Besides, with the genocide of Palestinians we have committed, the entire world community – barring half a dozen western democracies, is already spitting at us.


On the positive side, Mr. Netanyahu you would get yet another solid reason to postpone elections as you have done since 7 October 2023. Remember public memory is short. Besides the intelligence reports indicate that were you to hold elections anytime, you would be booted out of power; your pending corruption cases in the Supreme Court could get you life imprisonment. Moreover, the International Criminal Court could award you 30 years of incarceration. Lucky for you, capital punishment is not an option for ICC.


True the explosion at Dimona would have consequences – mass deaths, injuries, destruction, congenital defects in newborn babies in the future generations; besides air, water and soil contamination with radio- active material leaking out and spreading far and wide.


Remember that as time passes by masses forget even mass tragedies. Take the U.S bombing of Japan. Has the U.S ever faced any Nuremberg-type trial? Recall that in 1945 the Allies called for unconditional surrender of the Imperial Japanese armed forces, the alternative being “prompt and utter destruction”. The Japanese government ignored the ultimatum.


Sir, I am at the end of my briefing. Israel today stands at the same point of deflection as Japan stood on 26 July 1945. Hamas deadline is fast approaching – think fast and decisively – are we surrendering to Hamas or are we getting Israel destroyed.


Netanyahu: Quick, get me to the U.S President on the hotline


IDF Chief: Sir, we had kept him informed all along about the mess we are in. The FBI has safely deposited him at an under-ground facility, since the President feared that the security of even the Oval Office would stand compromised in such troubled international times.


Netanyahu: How about getting to the French President?


IDF Chief: He, too, was kept in the loop all along. The only message he has for you is that we should not confess even in a court of law that the Dimona reactor was built with French assistance.


The War Cabinet Meeting ended with a consensus note: No to surrender to Hamas; the death and suffering of several hundred thousand Israelis is a small price we have to pay. We will re-built Israel all over again as the Japanese did after WW-II. As the meeting ended a loud explosion of unparalleled magnitude was heard instantly; apparently a Hamas mole within the War Cabinet had sent a message to Hamas about the green signal to go ahead with the explosion. Rest is history.

Sunday 14 April 2024

“Modi Will Go To Jail If INDIA Bloc Wins Polls” Vs. “Give Me 5 More Years To Put Congress Netas In Jail”



P.S. Sahni


The corporate press comes in handy when there is a media war between ruling class parties. The Economic Times reported:

“Talking to reporters in Patna on 11-4-2024 Bharti raised the issue of electoral bonds and said BJP leaders in Bihar as well as the PM will be put behind bars for raising donations through the scheme by mis-using central agencies”.


Even reports:

“Modi will go to jail if INDIA bloc wins polls, says Lalu’s elder daughter Misa Bharti”.


It is just as well to recall what PM Modi has said in the past about sending opposition leaders to jail:

·      On 27 November 2023 media reported that “Our Resolve is to Send Corrupt BRS Leaders To Jail” (Syndicated feed carried by NDTV). 

·      The Business Standard dated 10 April 2019 states: “give me 5 more years to put Congress netas in jail-Modi”.

·      The India Today dated 8 May 2019 states: “PM Modi targets Robert Vadra, says will send him to jail if voted to power”.

·      The ZEE BUSINESS dated 11 April 2024 reported the PM as saying: “the corrupt will have to go to jail”.


The BJP Chief, J.P. Nadda said about Misa Bharti’s comment that such remarks against the PM reflect the frustration of the opposition leaders. Again, Ravi Shankar Prasad, former Union Minister and local BJP MP, advised Misa against passing derogatory remarks towards the PM, reported the TNN, 11 April 2024. The question which arises is if PM can talk of throwing named opposition leaders in jail why can’t Misa Bharti say that she would put BJP leaders in Bihar as well as the PM in jail? Secondly, if such comments show the frustration of the opposition leaders, why is it that the PM’s remarks of similar nature do not represent his frustration against the opposition leaders?


There is another question. The Union Minister, General (retd.) V.K. Singh inquired of Kejriwal (4 January 2024, ANI):

“Why does Kejriwal fear enquiry if he has not done any wrong?”


Anyone can ask the PM as to why is he worried about facing an enquiry in the electoral bond scam if he has done no wrong?


In fact, much earlier the Business Standard dated 27 December 2015 reported:


The AAP leader retorted by asking why Jaitley was “afraid” of a probe if he had done no wrong (reference is to the city government’s enquiry panel into DDCA affairs).


The Way Forward For All Ruling Class Parties


In a democracy there should be no place for any leader to threaten oppositional netas with being thrown in jail. Besides every accused is considered to be innocent till the court convicts that person. It is the job of the police, investigative agencies to collect evidence, file FIR, move court, frame charges and make arrests only if absolutely needed. The moment a political leader of stature threatens oppositional netas with incarceration there is seen a subtle attempt to influence the police, investigative agencies and even the courts. If the PM and his/her cabinet colleagues (present or former) start/join a public campaign advocating jails to be the rightful place for leaders of opposition parties this could constitute a media trial; even the party chief may get emboldened to join this cacophony. The ruling party should stay distanced from the police-judicial system so that the citizen’s trust in this system is not decreased.

Friday 12 April 2024

Indian Bureaucracy – Then and Now


P.S. Sahni


“Even the cream of the talent in the country in the administrative field often collapses at the slightest pressure … forging of records, fabrication of ground[s] of detention, ante-dating detention orders, and callous disregard of the rights of detainees as regards revocation, parole etc”

       From the Shah Commission Report, 1978


In normal times if a citizen petitions the administration for any work and many other people or organizations support the issue raised in the petition, the bureaucracy is supposed to set in motion the process of taking action. The petition can be sent by speed post or it can be received at the concerned office. The office is supposed to give a diary number. Many times the issue gets raised in the media and there are officials in the government of India particularly in the Union Home Ministry who keep clippings of print media. In the good old days, the lowest level gazetted officer would prepare a note when the issue was of public importance. This note passes from the section officer to the under secretary, then to the deputy secretary, then to the joint secretary and again to the additional secretary. Finally, it reaches the secretary who may consult the Minister for opinion. The Ministers generally give oral advice to escape any future enquiry. An upright officer can ask for a written opinion by the Minister. That is protocol in normal times.

Meanwhile citizens and organizations can go to the office and ask for a reply to their petition. Presently anyone can file an RTI application and demand a reply. I have a very simple question. Is there not a single gazetted officer left in India who can stand-up to the powers that be? It is so obvious that the electoral bond scam has been raised by so many people, lawyers, political parties, organizations; also the petitions have been received in this or that government offices including the following constitutional/statutory bodies:


1.     National Investigation Agency

2.     Central Bureau of Investigation

3.     Income Tax Department

4.     Enforcement Directorate

5.     Central Vigilance Commission

6.     Securities and Exchange Board of India

7.     Reserve Bank of India

8.     State Bank of India

9.     Comptroller and Auditor General of India

10.   Election Commission of India  


Is it the case that no bureaucrat in India has shown the courage and do the needful expected of a public servant? Are we back to the period 1975–1977 when bureaucrats behaved the way as concluded by the Shah Commission. In 2 months’ time we would be entering the 50th anniversary year of the declaration of Internal Emergency. But the situation is the same today. Only a mass movement can reverse it.


When TMC leaders protested at the office of the Election Commission of India, New Delhi recently they were detained by the police and taken to the police station. They were only demanding the transfer of some officials. They were not even challenging the authority of the Election Commission of India. I remember my friend Inder Mohan sitting on a dharna at this very office over the Kashmir Elections in the last decade of the 20th century. In normal times the demand of transfer of officials raised by a large number of organizations is addressed and looked into by the powers that be. Since there is no declared emergency, the people are flabbergasted.


राजा बोला रात है
रानी बोली रात है
मंत्री बोला रात है
संतरी बोला रात है
यह सुबह सुबह की बात है

- Gorakh Pandey