FATF ‘Grey List’ Isn’t ‘Grey Enough’ For Pakistan!

A new act appears to be unfolding in the Pakistani theater of the absurdities but actually it is just a repeat show, not a new script.

FATF Watch List

fatf pak flagThe global paradise of terrorists has been put in a state of suspended animation by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global body established in 1989 aiming to set benchmarks to promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational mechanisms for countering money laundering, terror financing and other related threats that undermine the integrity of global financial system. The FATF maintains ‘grey’ and ‘black’ lists of countries with weaker systems to counter and combat money laundering and terror financing. However, the FATF does not have the authority or power to take any action against countries that don’t comply with the desired standards.

But getting listed on the FATF watch list has the potential to impact a country’s international transactions, because they come under greater scrutiny. Being in the ‘grey list’ means that Pakistan would find it tougher to access funds from the international markets. It was removed from the grey list in 2015 after being there for three years but its inaction pulled it back in. Now if Pakistan does not prepare a comprehensive action plan to eradicate terrorist financing by June and convince the FATF about its effective implementation it would find itself promoted to the ‘black’ list of willful violators! That would mean almost total isolation from the global financial world.

Pakistan – A Global Liability

fatf pak-1The manner in which Pakistan was re-inducted in the ‘list of shame’ reinforces the fact that the world community sees Pakistan as an avoidable liability rather than a reliable and responsible ally for a peaceful global order.  In the first discussion in the Paris meeting  China, Turkey and Saudi Arabia (representing the Gulf Cooperation Council, as it’s not a full member) opposed the move to place Pakistan on the watch list. But the US pushed for another discussion and convinced the Saudis to vote for the move in return for a full FATF membership. This left only two opponents – China and Turkey – one less than the required three members to stall a move.

At this stage, the Chinese opted out as they did not want to “lose face by supporting a move that’s doomed to fail. Pakistan ‘appreciated’ the Chinese position and ‘thanked’ Turkey for “continuing to support Islamabad against all odds.” Mark the phrases ‘lose face’ and ‘against all odds’ here!  However, Pakistani experts know that grey listing means a ‘major setback for Islamabad’s efforts to improve its global image’.

Looking at past conduct it would be naïve to think that the ‘grey listing’ can force Pakistan to embrace demeanors of the modern civilized world or realize its folly of hobnobbing with jihadis. If the rogue nation recently took some cosmetic steps against terror financing it was just to fool the international community. In 2015 when Pakistan was removed from the watch list was expected to show its intent and ability to “fully implementing the UNSC Resolution 1267” on UN-designated terrorists and get out of the ‘grey’ color. It is not clear why Pakistan has been allowed to breathe easily till June before it is re-inducted into the hall of shame. Given the fact that the jihadi virus has already dangerously penetrated and spread into the Pak society it rightfully deserves a permanent place in the ‘black’ list, although even that would not change its conduct.

In reality, the FATF, Donald Trump, Prophet Mohammad or even Allah can’t cure the disease Pakistan is so affectionately in love with!!

Impact on Pakistan

Although the “grey listing” does not invite legal or penal procedures, it may still cripple Pakistan’s economy particularly its banking sector and force foreign banks to reconsider operations on its soil and further push the country into global isolation. Pakistan would find it difficult to raise funds, pay debts and access global markets.  It would also be harder for foreign investors and companies to do business in Pakistan.  A decline in foreign transactions and foreign currency inflows could lead to further widening of Pakistan’s already large current account deficit (CAD). Just in 2013, Pakistani economy had to be bailed out by the IMF. It can’t keep doing it endlessly.

hafiz masood 1Global financial institutions would be wary of transacting with Pakistani banks and some might want to even avoid Pakistan altogether depending upon their risk perceptions.  Amid intense pressure from global financial regulators like the FATF, banks have been retreating from high risk countries in recent years. The level of due diligence by banks is already high in countries like Pakistan. The financial sector might take a hit if the Standard Chartered (the largest international bank in Pakistan with 116 branches) as well as Citibank and Deutsche Bank, which mostly deal with corporate clients, might decide to pull out.

But Pakistan’s self inflicted misery also brings cheers elsewhere. China would love to extend its financial ‘helping hand’ and bring Pakistan another step closer to being its future colony. It helps China in two important ways: It counters the US influence in Asia by weaning Pakistan away from it and it would enable it to use Pakistan and its Jihadi gangs more effectively against its emerging Asian rival India.

Ostrich Mindset of Pak Leadership

CrisisReflecting its juvenile mental status, Pak leadership has been bragging as usual. The financial adviser of the prime minister boasted, the ‘grey list’ isn’t such a big issue after all and nothing really will happen to Pakistan and claimed that country’s macroeconomic fundamentals are ‘strong’ and the stock market had risen by three percent even during 2015! All he was implying was that the color of the list was not ‘grey enough’, at least for now!

Such bravado is understandable because general elections are due this summer and it can’t afford to tell the citizens that country’s economy is heading towards doomsday. Knowledgeable people and experts of course see through such silly bravado but they don’t count in the rougue state.

The mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, terrorist Hafiz Saeed (with a $10 million US bounty on his head) had recently floated a political party and publically challenged the Pak government to put him again under house arrest. Pak army men were seen paying money to another powerful gang of fundamentalists that blocked the national highway for several days. Such is the clout of terrorists and fundamentalists in the nation, now more correctly famous as terroristan or jihadistan.

trump-2As the Trump administration changed its Pakistan policy and started demanding concrete action against terrorists on its soil, Islamabad started playing its ‘thicker than blood relation with China’ and ‘You can’t allow me to fall’ cards. But now both the US as well as the Chinese doles will come with much bigger premiums. It is also revealing to note that Pakistan recently reversed its policy and agreed to send its troops to fight for the Saudis in the war-torn Yemen!

Isn’t it what is called the ‘blood money’? It puts Pakistan in league with North Korea that sends its citizens as slave labors to Russia and earns money.

But, days of free doles are now gone for international mendicants, even for those wearing suicide jacket carrying nuclear bombs!

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Alarming Fall In Groundwater Levels In India

With declining recharge rates and sharply increasing extraction pace, the groundwater situation needs urgent attention and demands a change in irrigation and cropping methods.


GroundwaterGroundwater is the water that seeps through rocks and soil and is stored below the ground.  The rocks in which ground water is stored are called aquifers.  Aquifers are typically made up of gravel, sand, sandstone or limestone.

Question: What is the most extracted natural resource in the world?  Answer: Groundwater!

Yes, planet earth gives us this invisible asset that sustains a range of human activities. Blinded by Western development model of perennial GDP growth humanity is busy plundering even this resource. And foolishly take its availability for granted without bothering to know how the groundwater reservoirs replenish themselves. It may be surprising for many people to know that India is the world’s largest user of groundwater, oblivious to the fact that since the 1980s the groundwater tables have been continuously dropping.

India annually extracts around 251 cubic kilometer groundwater which is 25% of the total global annual extraction and 26 times the water stored in the Bhakra Dam.  In comparison, together China and the US extract just 112 cu km. Clearly, India’s water resource planning is very bad and farmers find it easy to use groundwater without much attention to which crops to grow. Ninety percent of the groundwater extracted is used for irrigation that covers 60 percent of the total irrigated area.

According to the 2016 Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) report, in the year ending January 2016 barely 3% well structures registered a rise in water level more than 4 metres, 35% showed lesser rise and 64% wells showed decline in water level. It is an alarming finding. The replenishment takes place through rainfall, back flows from irrigation and seepage from canals, other water bodies and conservation structures.

If the situation continues as it is, we are steadily inching towards catastrophe. Water, in any way, is going to be the reason for future troubles and conflicts in ways more than one. As climate change is altering the monsoon pattern, the stress on groundwater resources is likely to increase.

India’s groundwater use was just about 7 cubic kilometer in 1940; it went up to around 270 cubic kilometer at the millennium end. Since 1950, the total share of groundwater in irrigation has nearly doubled.  The groundwater extraction rose sharply during the late 70s and 80s. People connect it with the Green Revolution during which two things happened: one, building of large dams by governments and two, small and marginal farmers bored wells everywhere. Thus, today livelihood of 26 crore farmers and agricultural laborers crucially revolves around groundwater.

In response to the drought of 1972, drilling technology and hand pumps were introduced in India. As a result, by now there are around 30 million groundwater structures in India that are replenished by around 3 million perennial springs in the country, but very little is done to preserve them.

The over-exploitation of groundwater has created a series of problems, particularly in the agriculture-intensive belts across India. The situation is becoming particularly acute in the Northwest, where the groundwater levels have plunged from 8m to 16m below ground.  As the levels fall, rising pumping costs ultimately makes extraction uneconomical; small formers and labourers get directly impacted. The average farmer in Punjab, Rajasthan and Haryana faces the prospect of having no groundwater left for irrigation by 2025.

Groundwater scenario in Punjab – the champion of Green Revolution, shows a heavy deficit that would take up to 30 years only to restore to normal levels. In comparison, the poorer Odisha still has healthier groundwater tables, but there is talk of taking Green Revolution to the Eastern India that would make things worse.

Ground Water Availability  

Groundwater level map of IndiaThe map shows that ground water level has significantly reduced in the north- western region of the country.  There are other pockets across the country where the water level is below more than 10 metres, when sophisticated equipment is needed for extraction.

As of April 2015, the annual water availability of the country in terms of natural runoff (flow) in the rivers was about 1,869 billion cubic meter (BCM)/year. However, the usable portion was estimated as 1,123 BCM/year because of the constraints of topography and uneven distribution of the resource in various river basins.  Of this, the share of surface water was 690 BCM/year and groundwater was 433 BCM/year. Around 35 BCM of ground water is lost to natural discharge – as seepage to water bodies or oceans in coastal areas and as transpiration by plants whose roots extend up to the water table. So the net annual groundwater availability for the entire country was 398 BCM.

The overall contribution of rainfall to the country’s annual groundwater resource is 68% and the rest comes from other resources, such as canal seepage, return flow from irrigation, recharge from tanks, ponds and water conservation structures etc. Given the increasing population, India’s per capita annual availability of water reduced by 15% from 1,816 cubic metre in 2001 to 1,544 cubic metre in 2011.

Ground Water Development

groundwater developmentGround water development is a ratio of the annual ground water extraction to the net annual ground water availability.  It indicates the quantity of ground water available for use. 0-70% is considered safe, 70-90% is semi-critical, 90-100% is critical, and over 100% is considered over-exploited. The table here gives the level of ground water development in different states over the past two decades.

In the states of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan, the annual ground water consumption is more than annual ground water recharge.  In the states of Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh and the Union Territory of Puducherry, the level of ground water development is 70% or above. Over the years, usage of ground water has increased in areas where the resource was readily available.  This has resulted in an increase in overall ground water development from 58% in 2004 to 62% in 2011, as illustrated in Figure 3.

Groundwater Use Pattern

As mentioned earlier, the availability of surface water (690 BCM/year) is greater than groundwater (433 BCM/year). However, groundwater, being available almost everywhere through bore wells, is easily accessible and thus, forms the largest share of agriculture and drinking water supply. Of the extracted groundwater around 89% is used in the irrigation sector, 9% is used for the domestic purposes and the remainder 2% goes into industrial use. Groundwater also fulfils 50% of urban water requirements and 85% of rural domestic water requirements.

Irrigation Through Groundwater 

groundwater use patternMajor means of irrigation in the country are canals, tanks and wells, including tube-wells.  Of all these sources, groundwater contributes the largest share. Wells – dug wells, shallow tube-wells and deep tube wells – provide about 62% of water for irrigation, followed by canals with around 25%.

Over the years, there has been a steady rise in the groundwater utilisation for irrigation while other sources remained stagnated in the volume terms. As can be seen from the image above, the tube-well share has increased exponentially. There is a clear correlation in rise in groundwater use with the onset of the Green Revolution that demanded intensive use of inputs like water and fertilizers to boost crop production. Incentives such as credit for irrigation equipment and subsidies for electricity supply have further worsened the situation.  Low power tariffs have led to excessive and wasteful water usage, leading to a sharp fall in water tables.

Groundwater Contamination

groundwater contaminantionTable here shows the number of states and districts affected by geogenic contaminants as on July 2014.

Ground water is considered contaminated when certain pollutants are present in excess of the limits prescribed for drinking water. The commonly observed contaminants include arsenic, fluoride, nitrate and iron, which are geogenic in nature. Geogenic contaminants are those that occur as a result of geological processes happening within the earth’s crust. Besides, there are other contaminants such as bacteria, phosphates and heavy metals resulting from human activities – from domestic sewage, agricultural practices and industrial effluents. The sources of contamination include pollution by landfills, septic tanks, leaky underground gas tanks, and from overuse of fertilizers and pesticides.  It has been pointed out that nearly 60% of all districts in the country have issues related to either availability of ground water, or quality of ground water, or both.

Government studies have revealed high arsenic content in groundwater of 68 districts in 10 states – Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Assam, Manipur and Karnataka.

Some Key Issues

There are some vital issues related to the groundwater usage; for instance

Estimation of Groundwater Resources

A clearer picture of the state of aquifers in India will be greatly useful in managing the groundwater resources of the country. The current assessment methodology relied on observation of just around 15000 wells and then extrapolating to guess the status of around 30 million groundwater structures; it is neither accurate nor representative. There is a need for more extensive information gathering and shift from development to management of water resources.

Agricultural Crop Pricing and Water Intensive Crops

water use in cropsSince the 80s, roughly 84% of the total addition to the net irrigated area has come through groundwater, agriculture sector being the prime driver. Decisions of cropping intensity and pattern are taken largely independent of the status of groundwater availability in most areas. Another factor was pin pointed by the High-Level Committee on restructuring of the Food Corporation of India in 2014, chaired by Mr. Shanta Kumar. It found that although Minimum Support Prices (MSPs) are currently announced for 23 crops, the effective price support is for wheat and rice.  This creates highly skewed incentive structures in favour of wheat and paddy, which are water intensive crops and depend heavily on ground water for their growth.  Additionally, Indian agriculture is highly water inefficient. The table here above the average amount of water (in cubic meters/tonne) needed to grow different crops in different countries.  As can be seen, India irrigation system is highly wasteful; it uses almost twice the amount of water to grow crops as compared to China and United States.

The Committee also suggested that cropping pattern needed to be diversified by providing better price support for pulses and oilseeds.  This would also incentivize the production of these food grains. For reducing dependence of agriculture on groundwater, other experts have suggested the use of demand management measures in agriculture. For example,

  • Dry-season crop planning for specific areas depending upon the aquifer type, monsoonal rainfall and groundwater table level. This would include some shift towards higher-value and less-water consuming crops.
  • Adoption of modern efficient irrigation technologies such as drip and sprinkler systems.
  • Controlling groundwater extraction through regulatory measures such as restricting the depth of irrigation water wells, establishing and enforcing minimum spacing between irrigations.

Energy Subsidies and Groundwater Extraction

The practice of providing power subsidies for agriculture has played a major role in reckless use and over extraction of groundwater in India.  Moreover, electricity supply is not metered and a flat tariff is charged depending on the horsepower of the pump. So some kind of regulation on the use of electricity is needed to avoid wastage of groundwater. Separate electric feeders for pumping ground water for agricultural use could address the issue.

The state of Gujarat solved this problem through its ‘Jyotigram’ scheme which was launched during 2003-2006 by investing 1450 crore rupees. It involved separation of agricultural electricity feeders from non-agricultural ones and establishing a tight regime for farm power rationing in the rural Gujarat.  By 2006, the state had covered almost all of its 18,000 villages under the scheme of rationalized power supply.  This led to two major benefits: (i) villages receive 24 hour three-phase power supply for domestic uses, in schools, hospitals, village industries, all subject to metered tariff, and (ii) tube-well owners receive eight hours/day of power of full voltage on a pre-announced schedule.

National River Linking Project

Government proposes to physically transfer 178 billion cubic meter water annual across river basins by building 12,500 km water canal network. The estimated cost of the proposal is massive: $120-billion. This is the largest such project in the world — aiming to expand irrigated agriculture by moving water from “water surplus” to “water deficit” basins. The first of the planned canals linking the Kaveri and Godavari rivers was completed on September 16, 2015.

Experts opine that merely transferring water would not solve the problem of falling water tables. It would need a simultaneous increase in the storage capacity to be effective. They also advise working on other plans to reduce stress on groundwater – such as promoting more efficient irrigation, growing less water-intensive crops in the dry season and moving away from water-intensive crops in areas where there is less water.


While government is paying a lot of attention to river cleaning (although nothing much has happened beyond sloganeering) it would be best if groundwater replenishment is coupled with this initiative. Further, MNREGA work can be directed towards strengthening the water bodies that play a crucial role in recharging groundwater reservoirs.

What is needed is action; the time for talk has already passed!

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India’s “Unity In Diversity” Is Unique In The World

partition-of-india-1947When the colonial British were leaving India after gifting Pakistan to Muslims, they were convinced that India a conglomerate of 565 princely States would never stay united as one nation for long; it would fragment into several pieces within next few years. Most Western leaders held the same opinion. Clearly, the myriad diversity – lingual, cultural, traditional, and geographical – was beyond their rational comprehension shaped by the monotheist Christian philosophy that discourages diverse opinions. In fact, they had seen no prior example of such highly diversified but united entity anywhere in the world. But history post-1947 suggests that they needed some extra learning to justify their ‘expert’ title – the Indian ‘unity in diversity’ is still going strong at the age of 70.

Let’s look at the recent history of fragmentations.

End of the First World War gave birth to several new nations – Finland, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Poland, Hungry, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia etc.

The mono-cultural Islamic State of Pakistan could not stay intact even for a quarter century; in 1971 the East Pakistan wing became sovereign Bangladesh. It is still battling to keep together the Balochs, Pakhtuns and Sindhis. Yet, its vengeful jihadi ideology keeps it busy trying to break India! The Muslim Middle East is highly divided and turbulent despite common faith, culture and traditions; it is weird to see Shia Iran standing aloof from rest of the Sunni states as if there are two separate Islams!  The Kurd’s are restless for a separate nation. The dream nation of global jihadis, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was born and gone already despite the hallucination of forming global Caliphate!!

Europeans who lecture the world on democracy and liberalism can’t stay united as one “European Union” despite the common Christian cultural monorail. After Brexit many more nations are likely to leave the EU. In Spain, Catalonians are restless for a divorce. Between 1989 and 1992 Yugoslavia broke into seven pieces. In 1991, the USSR gave birth to 15 nations. Chechnyans are still demanding separation from Russia.

Creation of Israel in 1948 brought misery for the Palestinians. Very recently in 2011, Sudan broke into two pieces.

It is clear, religions can hardly keep united their own “believers” – they can only divide the humanity!! Why is that so? That’s because they have degenerated to the level of rigid and spiritless ‘faiths’ and ‘beliefs.’

In major democracies like the US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Australia arrival of people from across the world has brought diversities over the decades. Now they are discovering new challenges of heterogeneity and multi-cultural social setup despite the romantic ideal of ‘secularism’ to accommodate different “faiths.” They have much to learn about managing diversities beyond their so-called “secularism.” Many people foolishly think that “secularism” unites people of different “faiths.” It is utter ignorance to think that a Bible Believer will not have a discriminating mindset against say a Quran Believer because that discrimination is inherent in his “belief.” The same goes with the Quran believer.

Why Religions Fail, But Dharma Succeeds!

somnath temple quoteStarting from 1000 AD, Mohammadan barbarians repeatedly plundered and destroyed the Somnath temple over several centuries; and it got built that many times! Looters often indulged in mass slaughter and slave taking. But Hindus never lost trust in power of goodness; this is the resilience of trust in Dharma!! Dharma does not live in temples, costumes or rituals – it lives people’s understanding and not in the words of some special Book.  In the 14th century, philosopher Amir Khusro wrote that Gujarati Muslims used to first visit the Somnath temple to pay their respect before departing for Hajj pilgrimage. These unfortunate ex-Hindus had retained the Dharma wisdom despite label change under fear!

Most globe watchers wonder how India has managed to assimilate so much diverse forces into one national mainstream. If they really want to find out the unifying force behind Indian unity, they need to understand the essence of Indian culture (that goes far beyond their superficial ‘secularism’ to downplay religious monoculture) where diversity is a natural part of life.

However, before doing that they first need to understand the limits of their invention called ‘religion.’ Religion fails primarily because it tries to erase the human diversity which is natural – by forcing a uniform mindset on all “believers.” It ignores the natural reality that no two people have the same fingerprints; in fact, no two people can have even the same mindset or the same thinking. Therefore, diversity or dissimilarity is already built-in the humanity at the individual level – as a natural trait. It can’t be erased by inventing artificial god philosophies and forcing them on people.

On the contrary, recognition of this human diversity and its respect is an inherent part of Indian ethos which directly comes from its ancient Vedic philosophy that revolves around “Dharma.” Dharma is easily the most important Sanskrit word of Vedic literature pointing out to the profound idea of truth or reality. In fact, the Reality of nature is the Truth!  Unfortunately, foreign languages have no equivalent words to convey the meaning of Dharma. Even in India misguided foreign educated left leaning people have wrongly translated Dharma in English as “religion.” That’s absolutely absurd.

For the lay people, the Vedic science deals with how the universe or existence is governed by nature’s laws; and how everything happens according to the laws already existing in the nature. If human life is led as per these laws life is good, and going against them automatically brings pain and suffering. For instance, you can’t hurt someone without hurting yourself in some way – it’s a nature’s law.  “Dharma” points to such natural order, the right ethics and adopting them in personal conduct. It is all about right human values and morality, and their practice in life. Thus, all India-born different philosophies of life like Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism etc stress the right human conduct in their own ways. But they all translate into practice of non-violence, non-greed, and understanding the natural law of Karma which means doing good deeds bring good fruits in future and harming others invite pain and misery. Equating these philosophies with what is called ‘religion’ in English Language is sheer ignorance and deceptive as well.

The highly profound Vedic literature and Upnishads resulted from the experience of countless Yogis and sages of the past; they were adept scientists exploring the inner world through meditational techniques. They discovered that everything is interconnected through some divine force that pervades everything and every being – this reality has been also often called God, although not necessary. Thus, Indians  respect all forms of life as well as nature’s rivers and mountains; and see humanity as one big family (vasudeva Kutumbakam) – disregarding diversities. This knowledge permeates throughout India, right from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Meghalaya to Maharashtra.

In fact, in ancient times when the boundaries extended to most of East Asia and to Afghanistan and beyond in the West, the Western and Chinese travelers saw just “One India” everywhere, despite so much diversities. Even early Christians and Muslims who had to escape their homeland to avoid religious persecution and found shelter on the Indian soil merged among congenial Hindus effortlessly despite their foreign appearance and ‘faith’.

Indians practice such a lifestyle in various ways “regardless of their beliefs” – using their own wisdom, knowledge and rationality. They remain their own master, have full freedom to explore and are responsible for everything they do or don’t do. They don’t have to surrender to some specially invented god or his special son or messenger and then robotically indulge in some pre-specified set of “beliefs” and ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ given by unknown strangers.

What is religionFor the programmed minds of Muslims and Christians such an unstructured and open art of living with absolute freedom of thinking and believing is certainly very uncomfortable and confusing – and certainly a big responsibility. But this is what human freedom is all about – taking responsibility to live without imposed alien ideas of others!!

What the West called “Religions” – whether say, Christianity or Islam – initially evolved around teachings of saintly people, like Jesus or Mohammad, to help people lead virtuous life with right moral values – pointing to the same nature’s laws described more elaborately in the ancient Indian scriptures. But the clergy classes turned “religions” into political philosophies of dominance. For the masses, religions degenerated to mere ossified “faith” and “belief” as the basic purpose was lost. Therefore, all we see today is the my-god-better-than-your-god type of scenario.

Religions are Inherently Divisive

Religion worst friction of historySurely, the most basic defect in religions is their “divisive nature.”  By design, a religion can’t unite the humanity – it can only divide people into ‘believers’ and ‘non-believers’ with a rock-solid dividing line. Comically, the force of fragmentation continues even among the so-called “believers” of a common ideology.  Thus, today there are 73 different sects of Islam and 146 subdivisions of Christianity! If each of these cults has its own “truth” and “God” there must be 219 different “truths” and “Gods” which is hilarious and a comedy of collective irrationality!!

Another serious defect in religions is the centrality of some invented ‘god’ – and YOU must BELIEVE in it and then believe the ‘whole package’ given in the so-called holy-book without questioning!! Nothing can get more irrational and restrictive than this. Someone has rightly described ‘religion’ – a religion is just a fiction created around a fictional god. So, religions create yet another division: theist vs atheist. It’s another useless and silly debate. Buddha’s teaching is devoid of god but his followers are among the most peaceful people in the world. Just think of Tibet; although devoured by communist China Tibetans don’t indulge in vengefulness or terrorism. And, all that the Buddha taught was pure ‘Dharma’ – not ‘religion’!!

Yet, another distortion is that a ‘conversion industry’ invariably follows the “faith” to increase the number of ‘believers.’ Thus, there are various types of Muslim and Christian “conversion industries” funded liberally by their respective charities. So quite naturally, thinkers of the Christian West are worried about losing the number race to Muslims in next 25-30 years – due to their rather high fertility rate and pre-Islamic practices of child marriage and polygamy.

Further, in the hands of fanatics or deranged people, “faith” is highly dangerous – it can be more fatal than the deadly cholera or ebola viruses!! On the flipside, it is also true that excessive indulgence in “faith” can also trap people into permanent hallucination. Jihadi terrorism that we see today is a good example of that – religion has turned them into self-destructive “humanoids.” In the past two millenniums, insane “believers” have killed more people in their so-called holy-crusades or holy-jihads than all other wars of the history combined. The history of Islamic expansion since the 7th century AD is nothing but a repetitive tale of human genocide and terror “in the glory of Allah.” For example, explore: 1000 Years of Islamic Jihad in India.

It is fair to say that today there are very few people who really understand the very purpose of their ‘religion’ – which is to establish them in right human values and conduct; the vast majority is just the crowd of ‘believers’ or ‘faithists’ lost in rituals and costumes.

Wise Indian Muslims as well as Indian Christians feel safe in India because the majority Hindu community is inherently tolerant and accommodative by nature and their philosophy is unifying, unlike their own divisive “faith.” They feel further safe because there is no “Hindu conversion industry” with “manipulative sharks” scheming to change their “faith” label. And they are absolutely right!!

Indian Christians and Muslims have the golden chance to re-board the Dharma expressway, from where their ancestors were forced out in the past! Don’t let the ‘imposed foreign faith’ become a barrier for national integration.

You may also like to explore:

World Needs More Dharma, Less Religion!

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Can Trump Really Wipe Out “Radical Islamic Terrorism”?

Rise Of Global Terrorism

After climate change and global warming “radical Islamic terrorism”, as the US President Trump calls it, is another global threat that worries the global community. If climate change and global warming are purely ‘secular’ phenomena the menace of this jihadi terrorism is purely ‘religious’ – a “terror God” is pleased whenever his ‘true disciples’ kill innocent people. However, both do not recognize national or geographical boundaries – like flash-floods, landslides and earthquakes the jihadis also strike suddenly. Although their global brand ambassador, the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), has lost territory in the Middle East its “virtual Islamic Caliphate” continues to thrive in the cyberspace – radicalizing and recruiting Muslims to eliminate ‘infidels’ from the world. Thanks to its high-tech marketing propaganda on the internet and social media platforms, the glamour of jihadi terrorism has spread widely and penetrated deeply in the Muslim societies around the world. Now other jihad corporations are also perfecting the virtual skills for global jihad. Of around 7.6 billion global population, only about 1.6 billion are “believers.” The rest 6 billion are “infidels” – representing a huge unfinished work for the global jihadis!

Walking on the footsteps of the ISIS is the Islamic State of Pakistan (ISP) in the South Asia – the biggest Islamic State in the world, with over 200 million Muslims. While the ISIS was born and gone just in few years the ISP has managed to survive, despite bifurcation in 1971, since its Islamic birth in 1947. It proudly houses mighty terror corporations like the Haqqanis, Taliban, and Al Qaeda along with several dozen other jihadi enterprises. Its ex-President, Pervez Musharraf, proudly declares on TV channels that he has very high regard for the globally wanted terrorist Hafiz Saeed – the mastermind of Mumbai terror attack of 2008. Its secret agency ISI not only runs numerous jihad factories in the country but also actively nurtures terror units in other countries like Bangladesh and Myanmar.  It also has several India focused jihadi outfits like JeM, LeT and HM for whom the presence of over 1000 million “infidel” Hindus in the neighborhood is a mouth watering proposition. The “holy warriors” routinely cross into Indian border and soon get dispatched to hell by the Indian security forces, despite the promise of 72 virgins in heaven by their Pakistani godfathers!

As part of its jihadi agenda, Pakistan ISI is doing its best to radicalize Indian Muslims and exploit the historical Hindu-Muslim fault line. Therefore, the hazard of jihadi terrorism is unlikely to disappear at least from the South Asia, and Hindu India would always remain their sworn enemy for wielding the 1400 year old “sword of Islam”.

Dream of Islamic Dominance!

Although the tradition of violence in the name of Islam is as old as Islam itself, the roots of the current spell of global jihadi terrorism can be traced back to the fight against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in 1980s during the last decade of the cold war era. Using its close ally Pakistan, the US created an army of Afghan jihadis and pitted them against the communists. Reflecting the peculiarity of Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan Muslimun), around 20,000 Mujahideens also arrived from different parts of the world to join the jihad (“holy war”) to drive out the non-Muslim “infidels” from Afghanistan. A big number came from the Middle East including, the rich Saudi national Osama bin Laden. They turned it into a typical Islam vs ‘infidel’ battle. Certainly, the Americans then could not imagine that this jihadi monster, like the Bhasmasur of Indian mythology, would one day turn against them and the whole humanity!

When the communists decided to end their decade long occupation of Afghanistan, the global jihadis like bin Laden went ecstatic. They projected it as yet another historic victory of Islam over the non-believers, conveniently ignoring the fact that the long drawn US cold war policies had already eaten away the might of the mighty Soviets to a significant extent. Thus, the Soviets not only withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989 but the whole communist bloc too fell apart soon thereafter. [It is the same reason why colonial powers like Britain and France had to withdraw from their colonies at the end of second WW2.]

This victory emboldened the hardcore jihadis like Osama bin Laden to prepare for a much “bigger jihad” – reflecting their deep-rooted Islamic dream of conquering the whole world. The deadly Hollywood style September 11, 2001 attack on the US soil was the first quantum leap. Masterminded by Osama, it successfully demonstrated their capability to strike even the mightiest in the world. 15 out of 19 terrorists were from the Saudi Arabia – the motherland of the most suppressive version of Islam, Wahhabism that promotes radicalism and motivates terrorists to do what they do.

In retaliation, the US troops arrived in Afghanistan hunting Osama, and threw away the Pak backed Taliban government. But it took them 10 years to hunt down bin Laden in 2011 because he was living safely inside the radicalized Pakistan. However, even after 16 years of military presence, endless drone attacks and dropping the “mother of all bombs” they have failed to root out the jihadi hazard. On the contrary, jihadis appear to have grown stronger over the years, the credit for which again fully goes to Pakistan which is religiously obsessed to groom terrorism as an undeclared state policy – while posing of as the “biggest victim of terrorism” before the international community. It even wants the world to acknowledge its “high sacrifices” made in the global war or terror!!

Pakistan Turns Into A Jihadi “Islamic State”

Soviets withdrawal from the Afghanistan did not just inflate the ego of the Al Qaeda masters  it also distorted the cocky brains of Pak generals and turned them rogue. Rather than dismantling the jihadi factories after the Soviet departure in 1989 they decided to divert the trained jihadis against its ‘eternal’ enemy India. Thus, Pakistan started infiltrating battle hardened jihadis into Kashmir. It also created India-focused terror groups like JeM, HM and LeT to continue its undeclared war of attrition in the form of bloody Islamic jihad against Hindu India, particularly in Kashmir.

The 2002 Parliament attack and 2008 Mumbai terror attack are like most precious victory trophies for Islamic Pakistan in its jihad against the “infidel” Hindu India. Pak sponsored jihadi violence is a daily feature in Kashmir. Now Pakistan plans to equip jihadis with high-tech weapons for night warfare and is training them to handle even chemical weapons. Winter months always posed problems for the Pak jihadis to cross into the Indian side, so now Pakistan is importing protective winter gears for the jihadis so that they can carry on their violence uninterrupted throughout the year.

On the flip side, the love for jihadis and fundamentalists has already caused un-repairable damage to Pak society which is now badly infected with all types of jihadi viruses while the nation stands exposed internationally as a sponsor of terrorism. Global leaders are worried not only about Pakistan’s future stability as a country but also about terrorists taking control of its nuclear arsenal. They are also concerned about Pak military pushing fundamentalists into the political mainstream to weaken the “somewhat” civilian government.  After North Korea, Pakistan is the only country in the world that threatens its neighbor with nuclear attack on regular basis. It is also an open secret that Pakistan clandestinely supplied nuclear technology to North Korea.

However, the US President Trump has put Pakistan in a very tight spot by demanding that it eliminates terror groups from its soil because they are connected with groups launching terror attacks in Afghanistan. Pakistan, of course, drags its feet pretending innocence! In the past, it was also ‘ignorant’ of Osama and several other top terrorists living in Pakistan!! Lying is an inherent cultural trait of Pak leaders; the world knows it all too well by now. As a result, the new US Afghan policy has dumped Pakistan despite its geographical prominence. Instead, ignoring Pak’s vehement protest the US wants India to play the dominant role in the development of Afghanistan and peace in the entire region. President Trump has coined the term “Indo-Pacific” to further emphasize India’s emerging new dominant role in the global politics along with Japan and Australia.

“Good Terrorists” and “Bad Terrorists”

The global efforts to wipe out terrorism have so far remained ineffective primarily due to the distinction: bad-terrorists vs good-terrorists. Thus, Osama and with his Al Qaeda gang were “good-terrorists” as long as they fought the Soviets in the 1980s. They became “really bad” after the 9/11 attack in 2001!

Between the departure of the Soviets from Afghanistan in 1989 and 2001 Kashmir remained the hotbed of Pak sponsored terrorism because Pak sent “good terrorists” for jihadi violence; they were of course “bad terrorists” for India. Americans remained unconcerned because they had never tasted the hurt of jihadi terrorism. In fact, the global community never bothered to listen whenever India raised the issue of jihadi terrorism. Over the decades, Pakistan has created several gangs of “good-terrorists” like JeM, HM, LeT specifically to hurt India. The Shia Hezbollah group is “good” for Iran but “bad” for Saudis, Israelis and Americans. Hamas is “bad” for Israel but good the Palestinians, Arab nations and Iran.

So, terrorists are always “good” for their godfathers. In fact, they are important pawns in the politics in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and South Asian regions – in the later region, primarily due to the Islamic State of Pakistan. Their biggest advantage is that they can do things and operate in ways not possible for the soldiers of official army whose conduct is governed by international protocols. Thus, Pakistan could launch Kargil invasion using terrorists and mutilate bodies of Indian soldiers or use them to attack Indian soldiers at the border and behead them. It also used trained suicidal jihadis to attack Indian parliament in 2002 and Mumbai in 2008 to kill “as many ‘infidels’ as they could, till death.” Such substandard things are not possible with soldiers.

Realistically, the distinction of good/bad terrorist is unlikely to disappear because they have emerged as strategic assets for most Muslim nations. A country like Pakistan, which is devoid of any positive national goal other then the single point hate-India agenda, can never think of wiping out jihadi terrorism – no matter how hard the US and India try – because it is the only thing to justify its Islamic birth as a nation, nearing its expiry date!

Radicalization Through Social Media

A peculiar angle has emerged with Jihadi violence in recent years due to increasing penetration of Internet and popularity of social media around the world. Now, for instance, global terror groups can use social media and net connectivity to radicalize Muslims (lone wolf tactic) in any country. They can even give online training in bomb making and various ways to create panic, disrupt societies and kill people. Social media is a great channel for brainwashing and radicalization through videos, chats and multimedia material. Thus, people around the world have to be constantly watchful – there is no way to know if the Hafiz Saeed, Assiduddin Owasi or Pervez Musharraf living next door is not a radicalized lone wolf waiting for his chance to attack them.

The global Muslim population is around 1.6 Billion. Imagine if just 0.1 percent of this population is radicalized. That’s staggering 1.6 million potential terrorists threatening humanity.

How To Fight The War “On Terror” More Effectively

President Trump must evolve ways to plug online radicalization along with closing the sources of weapons and terror funding so that as the existing jihadis gets killed, no more crop up to replace them. But it would still not counter the ideology that creates terrorists at the first place.

President Trump’s two predecessors after the 2001 9/11 attack, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, did not see Jihadi terrorism on ideological lines. Republican Bush, however, was close in his description of jihadi terrorism as Islamic fascism of the terrorists who had perverted the ‘peaceful teachings of Islam.’ But he carried on his “War on Terror” as a “war against the evil” – not against the ideology.

His successor Barack Obama, wanting to be more politically correct, further distanced himself from the ideological reference and downgraded Bush’s “War on Terror” to a “fight” – a fight against specific terrorist groups. The phrase “terrorism has no religion” became fashionable among global leaders. He introduced drones to chase and kill terrorists in order to save American casualties. Americans felt relieved at this but he could not wipe out terrorism because as terrorists got killed many more were ready to replace them. The supply chain of fresh terrorists kept working, in fact more efficiently than ever. He failed to realize that the ideologically motivated jihadis are not like other underworld criminals who happen to be Muslims. Thus he only killed terrorists – and terrorism continued flourishing.

Republicans have long condemned Obama for failing to properly assess the threat. Trump and his team are more straightforward and quite close to calling a spade, a spade. Dumping the self delusion of ‘terrorism has no religion’ and the compulsion of ‘political correctness’ they chose to talk pointedly in terms of ‘radical Islamic terrorism’.

Interrogation of captured terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan also revealed that the top brains of terror outfits like the Al Qaeda and Taliban were genuine ideologues, adherents to the fundamentalist Salafi/Wahhabi strain of Islam. This ideology exploits the dual role of Mohammad – a social reformer saint and a political leader who fought wars. It solely focuses on the later and interprets Quranic verses out of context and in a totally distorted manner to glorify violence as a god given duty. In doing so, it entirely throws away the spiritual “essence” of Islam and turns it into a totalitarian political ideology. Irrationality is deeply ingrained in their thinking, which easily enters the domain of insanity. Yet, whether irrational or insane, terrorists do have a political ideology that no sane person would equate with the religion of Islam. In fact, their ideology appears totally alien to even Muslims.

Yet, they have an ideology which must be countered through a well devised narrative. Muslim scholars can make significant contribution here. In fact, they should have prevented misuse of their religion in such as a gross way at the first place. But alone they are vulnerable because of the very real fear of being killed – killing dissenters is a deep rooted practice of the fundamentalists in the Muslim societies. This deep-rooted violent tradition has largely left Muslim societies at the mercy of fundamentalists.

President Trump must collaborate with progressive Islamic elements such as scholars, intellectuals, and Muslim activists and create a vocal global entity that would counter and expose radical preachers and brainwashing experts who prepare the raw material for the terror industry. Saudi Prince’s recent desire to wipe out global terrorism gives some optimism. The Wahhabi scholars of his country can play a vital role in depoliticizing Islam by eliminating distorted interpretation of Quran.

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The Comedy Of Trump’s “Triple Talaq” To Pakistan!

Just when the Indian Supreme Court banned instant ‘triple talaq’ in India on August 22 the US president Donald Trump said the unthinkable. He uttered “Talaq Talaq Talaq” to Pakistan!  Pakistan was shocked. It went into the trauma of confusion and insecurity – as all helpless ‘triple talaq’ victims do. Was the US really ending their intimate relationship of so many decades?

Pakistan had banned ‘instant talaq’ on its soil way back in 1956. It never expected that it would ever face such a humiliating scenario on the international platform. But then Trump is no shut-brained Muslim male controlled by backward looking mullahs and has good reasons to be mad at Pakistan’s lack of loyalty. He was furious at Pakistan’s illegitimate affairs with the likes of Taliban and Haqqani corporations of terror industry – despite being partner in the US fight against terror in Afghanistan since 2002. He was also furious because Pakistan had not learnt any lesson even after the Americans hunted down Osama bin Laden and so many other global terrorists on its soil and put many Pakistanis on most wanted global terrorist list.

If the sudden divorce itself was painful, what was most unbearable was Trump’s falling for India. When Trump said he sees important role for India in Afghanistan, it was like a lightning strike. How could Trump be so callous, how could he never understood its deeply cherished Islamic sentiments! He should have known that Afghanistan is a Muslim country. Therefore, Pakistan alone has the ‘allah given’ license to control it in ‘typical Islamic ways’; like how its military is managing Balochistan since 1948 and how its jehadi babies are playing game of terror in Kashmiris; or how it ran Afghanistan through the Taliban corporate house in the 1990s. Moreover, Pakistan has always considered itself an indispensible US ally without which the Americans can’t achieve anything in this region.

Trump is really bad. He also did not recognize that Pakistan is the worst victim of terrorism!! Thousands of its ‘highly fierce’ Islamic troops died fighting the jehadis and so many of its citizens lost their lives in endless suicide bombings on its streets and mosques. They are still dying. How could Trump say that Pakistan doesn’t fight terrorists? So badly hurt is Pakistan that it stopped talking with the Americans; most talaq victims do that in retaliation and shock! But then it woke up to realize that it has to talk.

Pakistan’s commitment against terrorism is firm like rock. It wants to keep fighting the terrorists for rest of its life! And it’s the only country in the whole world wanting to do that!! But it’s only possible if it continues to produce them – after all you can kill a terrorist only once; it’s pure commonsense. Trump should understand that!

Trump is also so ignorant. He not only could not understand Pak’s heavenly love for jehadis terrorism, he also failed to note its divine hate for India, full of so many kafirs. If Pakistan were a jehadi terrorist it would have by now already blown its suicide vest to destroy India and reached jannat!

Pakistan Must Win Bangladesh War in Kashmir!

If Trump is talking like this it sure must be a devious conspiracy of Modi and Indian devil RAW who poisoned Trump’s ears. They are really bad. Now they are planning to setup high-tech Israeli fencing at the border. In fact, Trump should convince India not to do that; it would deny products of its Jehad factories their ‘right and freedom’ to kill and die to reach ‘jannat’ directly from Kashmir. The fencing would also put Pakistanis at great risk because jehadis would then have no option but to ‘perform their religious rites’ inside Pakistan. Whenever it happens all blames would go to Trump for endangering Pakistani lives!

Lately, India has beefed up its border surveillance and its military has been killing Pak trained jehadis sent there on divine mission and is locking up its agents who pay Kashmiri kids to throw stones at Indian army-men. It is unbelievable how Americans could join hands with such a hostile India. If Modi succeeds in his plan both jehadis and stone throwers would soon go out of job! There is already so much unemployment everywhere. India was really wonderful before Modi became PM in 2014. Modi is really anti-Islam; he doesn’t even practice Muslim ‘appeasement’ like others. Many of its mouthpieces are having a hard time in India. It is really hard to deal with Modi’s India.

Trump is also ignorant of history. He must understand that Pakistan has to win its Bangladesh war in Kashmir! But since India is too mighty, it can’t win a direct war. So it has to depend upon the jehadis to hurt India. In 1971, devil Indians helped East Pakistanis to become Bangladesh. They also captured 93,000 of its army men and grabbed 5000 square km of its land in West Pakistan. How could Indians do such a bad thing to Pakistan – the only country in the world formed in the name of religion. It badly hurt Pakistan’s Islamic pride. Trump should know that Islam was, and still is, the only reason for its existence! He must know that Islam is its only identity.

Pakistan lost in 1971 because it did not have jehad factories and jehadi products then. But situation is changed today. Now it has a thriving terror industry with indigenous brainwash centers and almost ‘Nobel Quality’ professors of jehad science and technology; its products have won worldwide acclaim. No corner of the globe is beyond the reach of its jehadis. In fact, they can go where even American fighter jets and drones can’t reach!

Pakistan is no longer a Muslim country; it is a Wahhabi nation now. In fact, more Wahhabi than Saudi Arabia. If Saudis know Wahhabism in theory, Pakistan actually practices it! So, if ‘not now then when’ it can think of winning the lost war of 1971! Americans should recall how Pakistan helped them train jehadis fighter to drive out the communists from Afghanistan in the 1980s. But they never bothered to dismantle the jehad paraphernalia after the communist left and Pakistan was burdened to look after their welfare.

Now it’s time that the US returned the favour by helping it win the Bangladesh war in Kashmir! But instead it is talking talaq, how ungrateful? Then it is also talking of conditional aid. Can there be conditionalities in marriage, even if it were a marriage of convenience?

Mr Trump must answer!

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India Ends Triple Talaq; Why Shah Bano Failed in 1985?

India got freedom in 1947 from British exploitation. But it took another 70 years for Indian Muslim women to gain freedom from the whimsical ‘triple talaq’, promoted by backward looking clergy in the name of Islam and Sharia. The AIMPLB clearly emerged as the biggest hurdle in granting freedom, equality and dignity to Muslim women..

August 22 Brings Dignity and Freedom For Muslim Women

triple talaq 1August 22, 2017 will be remembered by all Indian Muslim women as the day when they got freedom from the oppressive practice of sudden and arbitrary out-of-court ‘triple talaq’ deliberately sustained by the maulavis in the name of ‘Islam’ and ‘Sharia’. It brought unbelievable sense of relief and freedom for the 90 million women under the veil for the first time in their life. Although not fully out of the oppressive patriarchal shadow, Muslim women can now hope for some sense of dignity and security in their lives. It was something political pundits have never thought feasible, given the deep rooted cult of maulvi appeasement politics in the political establishment.

What is remarkable is that the initiative came from the triple talaq victims encouraged by women groups. But this time they were actively supported by the Union government of the Bhartiya Janata Party, which is staunchly against Muslim appeasement politics. Modi government firmly stood for women’s rights and gender justice in the Supreme Court. Needless to say, lawyer politicians from the Congress Party (the mother of all Muslim appeasement gimmicks) argued for maulavis represented by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) but failed give a single rational argument that triple talaq has anything to do with Islam.

August 22 must also be the darkest day in the life of backward looking maulanas because the SC verdict jolted their patriarchal stranglehold over women of the community. It also gave a severe blow to their uniquely irrational and unethical nikah halala sex business (unheard of in other religions).

Just when the Honorable Judges were delivering their verdict, a woman in MP received ‘talaq, talaq, talaq’ written on a piece of paper in mail from her husband. She refused to accept the divorce and went to the police – an option that did not exist just a day ago! This is the new ‘Empowerment’ the SC gifted to Muslim women – always denied by the clergy class citing Islam or Sharia. This would certainly bring some sanctity in the institution of marriage and a sense of responsibility in Muslim men who grow up seeing marriage as just a social contract for sexual pleasure. While it would be wrong to expect that they would stop treating women like commodity but now at least women have recourse to State help, if they are arbitrarily pushed out of the marriage.

Why Shah Bano Failed in 1985

If a Muslim man could just walk out of the marriage so easily by mere verbal announcement in a secular country like India, even after several decades since independence, it speaks for the political clout of the ossified brained Maulavis who live mentally stuck in the 7th century Middle Eastern society. They hobnobbed with the self-serving appeasement politicians and reduced the community they supposedly represent to the status of a mere ‘vote bank’.

The ugliest face of ‘appeasement’ was on display in the mid 1980s when the Supreme Court ordered maintenance for a triple talaq victim, Shah Bano. It brought furious mullahs on the streets in protest as if the Supreme Court of secular India has launched an attack on their religion. Rajiv Gandhi led Congress government buckled under pressure and went to the extent of negating the SC verdict through Constitutional amendment in order to placate the angry maulvis.

Such has been the clout of radical Mullahs in India which is a secular state and 85 percent population doesn’t practice Islam. A lot of people were left confused why a pilot-by-training and convent educated PM Rajiv Gandhi appeared too eager to please the radical Muslim clergy.

Here is a Little Secret, why Rajiv Gandhi acted the way he did.

In a Lok Sabha TV debate on August 25, an SC advocate Amitabh Sinha revealed a startling secret – on how the then Congress Leaders looked at the Maulavis protest against the SC verdict. He cited the comment of a senior Party leader Arjun Singh: “If they want to remain stuck in a hole, let them be.” And thus, Rajiv Gandhi went ahead with the Constitutional amendment to mollify protesting mullahs and preserve the vote bank.

Thus, as long as the appeasement politicians ruled the central government Muslim women remained oppressed and exploited because the ruling elites could never think of going against the wishes of maulavis for fear of losing the vote bank. Despite the baseless and malicious campaign against the BJP that it fuels Hindu-Muslim conflict and that Muslims would be in trouble if it comes to power, Modi proved that only and he and his party are actually secular. Isn’t it surprising that since 2014 people have not heard of communal clashes and corruption scandals that were regular features for 10 years under the Congress led UPA government.

No surprise if a large fraction of Muslim women go with the BJP in future elections. It would discourage mullah promoted isolationism in the community and a big leap towards true national integration!

Are Muslim Women only Objects to be Used and Thrown Away?

In a recent survey an NGO found that of all divorced Muslim women, 66 percent were divorced orally; 7.6 percent through letter, 3.4 percent on phone. In recent years, social media emerged as another channel to throw away wives whimsically – reflecting the typical use, abuse and dump mindset of the male community.

The Census 2011 data shows that around half of all married Muslim women got married before the legal marriage age of 18; of which around one in seven even before 14. Such early marriages deprive them the opportunity of acquiring education or financial freedom. Child marriage is the proven cause of backwardness and poverty in communities across the world.

Triple Talaq 2If you wonder why women’s status is so weak in the Muslim community, just listen to any typical maulavi or qazi talk and you would soon conclude that all rights and freedom belongs to men alone – as per ‘their’ Islam and Sharia. Many have been proudly declaring on TV channels that even if the man is drunk and utters talaq three times the marriage is instantly over. ‘Their’ Islam is blind to justice for the estranged wife and concern for the abandoned children. As a result, a Muslim man could send the TTT words from Dubai just days after the marriage  or he could wait for 10 years, 20 years… he would still be always fully backed by the qazis whose livelihood depend upon propagating injustice to women ‘in the name of Islam’.

The human civilization has crossed the 20th century and is preparing for the global challenges of the 21st century. But Indian maulvis just can’t shed their ossified mindset; they appear mentally incapable of absorbing progressive modern ideas. They obsessively resist change talks of gender equality and equal rights to men and women – again hiding behind the smokescreen of Islam or Sharia.

‘Their’ Islam and Sharia can impose any injustice or irrationality particularly on women. Nikah halala is perhaps their favorite; it is a mouth watering proposition for sex lover maulvis. It comes in the picture if the divorced woman wants to remarry her previous husband. As per ‘their’ Islam she has to now marry another man, must have sex with him, and get divorced – only then she gets ‘purified’ to remarry her ex husband. What a nonsense logic!! News channels recently exposed how so many maulavis remain ever eager to become ‘one night husband’ for a hefty pre-fixed fee! It doesn’t even matter if these ‘play boy’ maulvis are already married.  This is a frightening and exploitative proposition for helpless and already harassed women. Imagine the immense mental agony, humiliation and exploitation a woman feels while going through such halala marriage for rape. But the ‘Islam’ of these maulvis allows it. Most certainly, like jehadi terrorists these stuck brain maulavis are the biggest enemies of their own religion.

It would be wrong to say that they are issues only of 90 million ‘Muslim women’. They are serious issues that vitiate the social atmosphere and culture of the whole country – which stands for justice, dignity and freedom for all its citizens. Maulvis tend to forget that Muslim women are ‘Indian citizens’ of a secular democracy too and that they have the same Constitutional rights as any other Indian citizen.

Over 22 Islamic countries (including neighboring Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan) banned ‘triple talaq’ long ago. Egypt was the first country to ban it in 1929; Pakistan banned it in 1956 after a weird and unethical behaviour of its then PM. But a secular country India where 85% people are not Muslim had to wait 70 years after independence to ban it. It is really disturbing to see how badly the maulvis have been spoiled by the appeasement politicians during all these decades.

AIMPLB Symbolizes Injustice and Oppression of Women 

AIMPLB mottoThe All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) is a self-declared mouthpiece of ALL Indian Muslims. But don’t conclude that it represents all Indian Muslims or wants to promote education and development in the Muslim community. In reality, it is just a club of cocky and backward looking fundamentalist mullahs, who are highly allergic to progress or change. Even in the 21st century they behave as if mentally stuck in the 7th century tribal society of Arab desert. Symbolizing patriarchy and backwardness the only thing they wants is to maintain their stranglehold on the community. They almost compulsively oppose every talk of freedom, equality and dignity to women. And they always do so, in the name of Islam or Sharia.

women in Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia society is the best reflection of their mindset. The status of women in Sharia society can be judged from the restrictions listed here. There is no dignity, freedom or respect for women as human being. Although the Saudi monarch has just recently announced that Saudi women would be allowed to drive from June 2018, the list of oppressive laws against women is very long. A Saudi Maulvi recently pronounced that a woman’s mental capability is only one-fourth as compared with a man. In a Sharia society a rape victim is highly susceptible to further humiliation. She would be accused of having engaged in illicit sexual relation which carries punishments ranging from imprisonment and flogging to death by stoning. The world ‘rape’ does not exist in the Sharia dictionary. In rape cases conviction can only happen if four male eyewitnesses testify to having seen the act occur.

Making itself an important party to triple talaq hearing in the Supreme Court, the AIMPLB changed its stand repeatedly. It initially wanted the SC to stay away from ‘meddling’ in their personal law (AIMPLB mullahs hallucinate that they are bigger than the highest Court of the land!), then announced that it would itself work towards abolishing this practice within two years, and finally welcomed the SC verdict (at least in public). It had also put forward a weird logic that ‘women are mentally less capable than men’. Implying, thereby, they can’t be trusted or taken seriously. Treating women like commodity and cattle is the foundation of AIMPLB’s deeply cherished Sharia Law that existed in the 7th century Arab land.

AIMPLB’s voice is never heard when rich old Sheikhs form the Middle East come to India to marry young Muslim girls and take them away as sex slaves. It has been also blind to sex rackets of qazis in the name of halala marriages that has been going on since ages as a Sharia Law. No one expects it to speak against polygamy either. It is unthinkable if it would stop opposing the uniform civil code. Its agenda is all about backwardness, suppression of women and politics in the name of Islam and Sharia.

The Way Forward

End of triple talaq should be seen as an important but only a tiny step towards justice and dignity for Muslim women. Talaq is still a privilege of men. However, now it is time to exploit the space created by the SC verdict to fight for further freedom.

The human civilization has crossed the 20th century and is preparing for the global challenges of the 21st century. Human life is all about developing various potentials that lie dormant in us. A religion is meant to help people ‘liberate’ from the shackles of ignorance and destructive thinking. But when it starts to imprison people into rigid thinking and promote irrationality, it becomes a serious obstacle to human growth and social progress. Radical Islamists and terrorists are the best example of that.

It is time for the younger generation of Muslim community to come forward, focus on acquiring modern education and join the national mainstream to enjoy fruits of development and freedom in the 21st century world. The most effective way to lift the mullah controlled Muslim community out of backwardness and patriarchy is to focus on girls’ education and stop their marriages before 18.

Perhaps the best way to integrate the Muslim community into national mainstream is to embrace the uniform civil code. It is opposed by the AIMPLB and obscurantist maulvis because it would weaken their political hold on the community, but embracing ucc would certainly be the most progressive step for the community.

You may also like to know what Wahhabi Islam is.



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India’s Obsession for ‘GDP Growth’ Is Killing Farmers

With an ongoing petition on farmer suicides in the Supreme Court, the debate appears to be heating up again – only to fade away much too soon! And, poor farmers would continue to end their lives.

Citing National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), the Union agriculture minister recently informed the Parliament that 11,400 farmers committed suicide in 2016, compared with 12,602 such deaths in 2015.

The minster also said that in 2016-17, Rs 3,560 crore was paid towards premium under the crop insurance scheme and Rs 3,548 crore was claimed by the farmers. The figures for 2015-16 were Rs 3,760 crore and 4,710 crore, respectively.  He also talked about various Government initiatives and that Rs 10 lakh crore are allotted for farm credit in the current year.

Needless to say, most of this money will go in the pockets of companies supplying fertilizers, tractor, seeds, pesticides and so on. The farmers would remain where they are – in poverty! And yes, the GDP would get bigger!! All government allocations are basically designed to expand the gross domestic product (GDP). It’s all about economic expansion by helping companies, little about farmers and their wellbeing.

Statisticians playing with the NCRB data come to the obvious conclusion that suicides in the farming sector are largely due to economic distress than those in the non-farming community, except for Maharashtra and Kerala. They conclude that it is a regional problem, not a country-wide phenomenon.  Other experts who study demographic surveys tell us that farmers are not the most suicide-prone group in the country. But those farmers who committed suicide needed counseling more than economic palliatives!!

Really? Would that clear their debt burden or increase their income?

Such analyses are hallucinations of chart master ‘experts’ who have never actually walked on a paddy field. They are designed more for media debates in AC studios of TV channels; if at all a channel finds any commercial value in it.  For these number crunchers, farmer suicide statistics at best provide wonderful topics for MPhil or PhD thesis. But neither the government nor the ‘experts’ talk about the root cause of farmers’ suicide that has been going on for 2 decades. Thus, they have no solution.

GDP Centric’ Development

Since the economic liberalization in the early 1990s and weakening of license Raj, industrial sector became prominent for the government. Today this sector contributes the most to GDP growth. As a result, the share of farming sector in the GDP gets smaller each year. Currently, the farming sector contributes only about 15 percent towards the GDP. Moreover, the farmers who kill themselves due to financial distress are among the poorest.  Their contribution to GDP is only miniscule. They are also voiceless and choice less. Why would any policy maker care about them?

Moving from farming based economy to industrial economy necessarily involves shifting more and more people for the farming community of the villages to the industrial sector to become cheap industrial labor force. It also means displacing the tribal communities from their mineral ridden lands and converting them into industrial labor. In reality, farmers and tribals are the biggest victims of India’s GDP growth story since past two decades.

Some months ago, some half-brained pseudo-economists were debating this topic on a TV channel devoted to capital market. One ‘expert’ said something implying that: in order to have ‘lowest cost’ industrial labor, it is important that farming labors and tribals should be displaced from where they live and be forced to migrate to distant towns where they become rootless.

Such brain-dead intellectuals know nothing about human wellbeing, human dignity and what ‘development’ is really about. Their task becomes much easier as ‘GDP growth’ becomes the only national obsession. Unfortunately, we live in a copy cat country that believes in adopting western concepts without Indianization.

Why GDP Growth is So deceptive

The GDP is a pure economic number – the gross tally of products and services bought and sold. Things which aren’t sold, say household work, do not contribute towards the GDP calculation, though they add value to people’s lives. The reason why GDP is so deceptive is bad things can increase it and good things can decrease it.

Natural disasters like earthquake and flood are bad for people. But they increase the GDP because of the cost associated with repairs, clean up and reconstruction. Fast food is another great GDP booster!! As people develop taste for fast food they begin to develop all types of health trouble. It means more visits to doctors and more expenditure on medicines. It means bigger income for hospitals and pharma companies – GDP gets boosted!

Good things lower the GDP!

Imagine if people start practicing yoga, stop eating fast-food and eat only healthy diet. Then they would remain in good health and rarely fall ill. This would mean less business for doctors, hospitals and pharma companies. It would shrink the economy and lower the GDP – economy is depressed!!

If countries evolve some mechanism to eliminate conflicts and wars, the arms industry would collapse. It would badly hurt the GDP numbers!  Likewise if people become good citizens and stop committing crimes, there will be less expenditure on police, jail staff, lawyers and courts. This will also reduce the GDP, but good for people!

A Question: If the GDP is growing at healthy rate of 6-7 percent per annum, why farmers’ suicide not decreasing?

The answer is: GDP is just an economic number; it is not a measure of people’s wellbeing.

Development is a multidimensional process, of which GDP growth is just a dominant parameter. Deception crops up when GD growth alone is presented as development. This is exactly what has happened in India.

Solution lies in creating a better composite indicator of development. Such a composite development index can be easily created following the ideas behind the construct of multidimensional poverty index (MPI).

I hope someone in the NITI elite group is thinking along this line.


You may like to explore further

Why “Development” should Focus on People, Not Economy
Why Is India So Obsessed with GDP Growth?

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