The News – Civilian would have been declared traitor for co-authoring book with Indian counterpart: Rabbani

Islamabad – Islamabad Capital Territory – Pakistan, 25 May 2018. Veteran PPP leader and former Senate Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani on Friday said if any civilian had co-authored a book with an Indian counterpart he would have been declared a traitor, referring to “The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and The Illusion of Peace” co-authored by former ISI and RAW chiefs.

Speaking in the Senate, he said it was surprising to see that on one hand Pak-Indo relations are at their worst and on the other hand opening of a book co-authored by former spymasters of both the countries is taking place.

Authored by former ISI chief Assad Durrani and former chief of India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) A S Dulat, the book discusses important issues between the two nations.

It also sheds light on Kargil Operation, Abbottabad Operation against Osama bin Laden, arrest of Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav in Pakistan, Hafiz Saeed, Kashmiri freedom fighter Burhan Wani.

He asked whether Assad Durani had sought permission from defence minister before writing the book.

According to Geo News, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani has sought response from Defence Minister Khurram Dastagir.

The Tribune – Toronto Blast – Diaspora left shaken, ‘never expected this’

Varinder Singh, Tribune News Service

Jalandhar – Panjab – India, 25 May 2018. The first-ever IED blast in the peaceful Greater Toronto Area (GTA) has left the Punjab diaspora and others in a state of shock.

The GTA and its suburbs, Brampton, Etobiko and Mississauga, have thus far been considered peaceful. Mississauga has a large Muslim population with Indians, particularly Punjabis, co-existing with Canadians and Pakistanis for decades.

“None of us had ever expected this kind of an incident at a place considered safe for all. We have never witnessed or heard of communal tension here,” Manan Gupta, a Brampton-based community activist told The Tribune over the phone.

Ajmer Singh, a trader from Etobiko, said the incident had left him shattered. “We have been sending our children to restaurants till late in the night without fear. We’ll have to be cautious now. I have never heard of a blast during my 25 years of stay here,” said Ajmer Singh.

Sukhwant Thethi, a Brampton-based Liberal Party leader, said: “I am most concerned for the patrons and staff of my friends at Bombay Bhel in Mississauga. I thank all first responders for their quick action”.–never-expected-this/595341.html

To Zelzate and Sas van Gent (NL)

Sas van Gent (NL)
12 April 2018

I have only 1 km to walk according to this signpost
But Zelzate – Klein Rusland is further away

Leaving the Netherlands already ?
See you soon Zeeuw Vlaanderen !

Boundery marker – here ends/starts the Netherlands
From Zeeuws Vlaanderen to Oost-Vlaanderen
Note the Gent – Terneuzen goods line

The Dutch lion is not much different from its Flemish counterpart

Zelzate (Be)
12 April 2018

The Gent – Terneuzen goods line running parallel to the canal

The province of Oost-Vlaanderen welcomes you
On the right the goods line, on the left the canal

To see all my pictures:

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Daily Times – Sikhs in the Hindutva crosshairs

Human Rights activists the world over must take cognizance of RSS groups in India harassing minorities, especially the Muslims and Sikhs in the name of Hindutva

Op-Ed, 26 May 2018. The election of Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Narendra Modi as Prime Minister (PM) of India has allowed the extremist Hindutva ideology to disturb the country’s social order.

The ideology’s origins can be traced back to a secular, diehard Hindu named Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, who in his 1923 essay ‘Essentials of Hindutva’ presented a new, distorted version of Hinduism, and what it meant to be Hindu. Savarkar stressed that India is exclusively for Hindus and they must safeguard their religion, apparently from Muslims.

Again in 1928, Savarkar published a pamphlet ‘Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?’ and put forward the concepts of ‘Indian Nation’ and ‘Greater India’ and defined a Hindu on the basis of race, culture and nation. The essays and books of Savarkar served as the Bible for his followers and they relentlessly followed those arguments.

If Hindutva was confined to only the promotion of Hinduism as a religion or belief, there would be nothing wrong with it. Unfortunately, the progenitors of Hindutva took it upon themselves to denigrate Muslims as well as other religious groups, driving the Indian society to fear and hate.

In 1939 another extremist Hindu, M S Golwalkar, put forward a new book titled We or Our Nationhood Defined. Golwalkar defined the Hindu religion and nation, he also used virulent language especially aimed at Muslims.

On September 27, 1925, Dr Keshav Baliram Hedgewar, a physician by profession and a Hindu by religion, was deeply influenced and impressed by the teachings of Savarkar and laid down the foundations of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) or the National Volunteers Movement in Nagpur, Maharashtra, then under British India.

Ostensibly, Dr Hedgewar was driven by the notion of ‘Hindu Rashtra’ or the ‘Hindu nation’ and wanted to organise the’Hindu nation’ primarily to preserve its identity. It was driven by intense hate and antipathy towards Muslims and Islam. Instead of teaching Hindus the notion of civic nationalism, they were given a distorted, radicalised version of Hinduism flanked by extreme sentiments of Hindu nationalism.

Hindutva appeared to have been placed on the backburner by the Indian Congress, while BJP, in its earlier rule under Atal Bihari Vajpayee, did not display a penchant for extremist Hindutva policies. It however, has received ascendancy in the government of Narendra Modi, who is himself a pracharak of the radical ideology.

The latest victims of Hindutva ideology besides Muslims, Christians and low caste Hindus, the Dalits, appear to be the Sikhs. Its community leaders have expressed grave resentment and anger over the RSS’ malicious designs of Hindutva, aimed at establishing hegemony of Hindus over India.

Sikhs in India were suppressed under Indira Gandhi, when she ordered a massive crackdown on the Golden Temple in Amritsar, the holiest of Sikh shrines through Operation Blue Star onJune 1, 1984. She paid dearly when two of her own Sikh guards assassinated her.

Since then, the Sikhs have been supressed. Now however, they are being directly targeted. This is happening to the extent that concerned voices have been raised by large Sikh community leaders in Australia and Canada.

The RSS’ Ghar Wapsi (return to your home) campaign, is an ongoing movement which aims to bring converted Muslims, Sikhs and Christians back to Hinduism. This law is a repeat of the past Shuddhi (purification) movement

Modi is constrained to support the repressive policies of the RSS in pursuit of the Hindutva diktat. During the 2014 general elections, Modi reached out to his parent organization, the RSS and Sangh Parivar for electoral support.

Following his victory, the progenitors of Hindutva demanded their pound of flesh: implementation of stern Hindutva doctrines and placement of extremist Hindus in important positions in the Indian government; thus the National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and the heads of the IB and RAW are in the same category.

The RSS’ ghar wapsi (return to your home) campaign, is an ongoing movement which aims to bring back converted Muslims, Sikhs and Christians to Hinduism. Many low caste Hindus, the Dalits had converted to escape the repression by high caste Hindus, the Brahmins.

This law is a repeat of the past shuddhi (purification) movement. Readers may recall that on September 24, 1990, then BJP president LK Advani launched “a crusade in defence of Hindutva”, which culminated in the demolition of Babri Masjid on 6 December 1992.

Since 1996, the BJP’s election manifestoes for Lok Sabha elections pledge to espouse Hindutva in these terms: “The cultural nationalism of India … is the core of Hindutva.” This explains the Modi government’s systematic purge of educational and cultural institutions.

The ‘Ghar Wapsi’ movement is also based on getting Sikhs into the folds of Hindutva, and aimed at converting the Christians and Muslims so they return to their ‘original religion’. The movement has gained momentum during the current Modi regime.

The recent visit of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to India was marred by his ostensible support for the Sikh community. He was greeted by mocks and jibes, facing embarrassment.

Human Rights activists the world over must take cognizance of RSS groups in India harassing minorities, especially the Muslims and Sikhs in the name of Hindutva. This cannot be a reflection of “Shining India”.

The Hindu – BJP on the way out, says Punjab CM

Special Correspondent

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 27 May 2018. Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday said that a united Opposition would oust the BJP-led government at the Centre in the Lok Sabha elections due in 2019.

Captain Singh was talking to press persons in Shahkot during a roadshow ahead of the Assembly byelection in the constituency on Monday. He said that anti-BJP forces were coming together and would throw the BJP-led Central government out as the people were completely fed up with it.

“People want a change, they want a future, they want a government that delivers,” he said, adding that the BJP-led government would face the consequences of its ill-conceived policies.

“The economy has been destroyed, industry is fleeing, law and order has collapsed,” he said.