World Sikh News – Will India’s Supreme Court protect Guru Nanak Mutts in Puri?

Published 3 days ago – Jagmohan Singh

Puri – Odisha – India, 17 September 2019. India’s Supreme Court will take up the case of demolition of all Mutts within a radius of 75 metres of the Jagannath Puri Temple today.

Under pressure from Sikh activists world­wide, the Naveen Patnaik government of the Indian state of Odisha has temporarily halted the demolition drive which was to demolish the Mangu Mutt and Panjabi Mutt relating to the visit of Guru Nanak Sahib, though with­out giving an official word about their intentions.

The DSGMC delegation met the Deputy Commissioner and was able to get verbal assurances only while the Orissa Sikh Pratinidhi Board Sikh leadership indulges into doubletalk and squabbles about the historicity of the places.

Thanks to the timely intervention of advocate-activist Sukhvinder Kaur and historian Anil Dhir, the uproar by Sikh Twitterati across the globe, the push provided by the tweet of Panjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, the Puri administration has stalled the demolishing since the last four days.

The Indian Supreme Court will take up a Public Interest petition today filed by InterContinental Association of Lawyers through its chairman Debasis Misra, seeking the quashing of the Odisha government order dated 16 August for the demolition of all structures within 75 meters of the Jagannath Puri Temple.

Though this petition was not specifically for the shrines related to Guru Nanak, all Mutts that the Odisha government proposes to demolish structures ‘for providing facilities to pilgrims’, the decision in this matter is likely to impact the Mangu Mutt and Punjabi Mutt which are so far intact.

Speaking exclusively to The World Sikh News, Sukhvinder Kaur said, “It seems that the importance of the Mutts and its history was not even known to the administration. Apparently, only after a score of media reports and social media intervention, the relevance of the Mutts came to be known to them.”

Senior BJP leader Dillip Mohanty has extensively tweeted to the Odisha government urging immediate stoppage of the demolition campaign.

Reliable sources in Puri have informed WSN that the Puri Collector Balwant Singh Rathore told the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee delegation that “the administration is now considering to preserve four rooms of the Mutt, but the remaining portion of the shrine will be de­molished.

The shrine where the images of Lord Jagannath and Shri Chand Ji, along with the Mahant’s Gadi, his per­sonal room and the Rosaghara (Kitchen) will be allowed to re­main.”

Panjabi Mutt, Puri, clearly, these are time-wasting tactics. WSN fears that the Odisha government which has so far not put out an official word on the subject is probably banking on the judiciary taking a decision which will enable them to complete the demolition.

Shockingly for the Sikhs, the Odisha Sikh Pratinidhi Board has issued a face­book post down­playing the Mango Mutt and its role. They said that the Mutt holds no relevance to the Sikh faith.

Sukhvinder Kaur speaking to WSN said, “It is sad, that while the administration has taken cognizance of the importance of the Mutt, the Pratinidhi Board is in a denial mode.”

Will the Naveen Patnaik government respect Sikh sentiments?

I do not know about these Mutts and their relevance for Sikhi but I am very much against the knocking down of historical buildings
Man in Blue

Will India’s Supreme Court protect Guru Nanak Mutts in Puri? – Outrage among Panjabis after Hindi writer terms Panjabi as a language of brawl and abuses

Sikh24 Editors

Chandigarh – Panjab – India, 17 September 2019. A wave of sharp outrage among the whole Panjabi community is being observed worldwide over the highly objectionable comments about the Panjabi language by Ludhiana based Hindi writer Sardar Panchhi and Himachal Pradesh resident Hukam Chand Rajpal.

The whole social media is being observed flooded with posts in favor of Panjab language and criticism of Hindi writers Sardar Panchhi and Hukam Chand Rajpal.

Urdu poet cum Hindi writer Sardar Panchhi reportedly termed Panjabi language as a language of brawl and abuses in a function held at the Language Department of Panjabi University (Patiala) on September 13 ie on Hindi Diwas.

Tejwant Mann, president, Panjabi Kendri Lekhak, who was present at the event, raised objections over the comments. However, he was heckled and deterred from speaking.

Following this, Hukam Chand Rajpal, a Hindi writer, allegedly, threatened Mann and said, “You wait for two years, we will show what Hindi language is.”

Several photos of demonstrations in favor of Panjabi as a mother language have surfaced over social media and these demonstrations are likely to get intensified in coming days.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that Sardar Panchhi has apologized for his poisonous comment against the Punjab language.

Outrage among Punjabis after Hindi writer terms Punjabi as a language of brawl and abuses

Gent Dampoort – Antwerpen Zuid

Dampoort Station
27 Augustus

Platform and shelter for passengers

Direction Gentbrugge station

Direction Antwerpen and Eeklo

The train to bring me to Antwerpen Zuid

Antwerpen Zuid
27 Augustus 2019

Antwerpen Zuid station seen from the viaduct

Antwerpen Zuid Tram-stop Line 4 and 10

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Pieter Friedrich – Adios Modi: Urging Houston City Council to Boycott “Howdy Modi”

“Modi’s hands are stained with blood,” I stated at Houston City Council

Houston – Texas – USA, 17 September 2019. I attended the Houston City Council meeting to speak against the upcoming “Howdy Modi” event and urge city officials to decline participation.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will be visiting Houston, Texas on 22 September for a mega-rally dubbed “Howdy Modi.” City leaders, including Mayor Sylvester Turner, plan to attend the partisan Indian political event, which some have termed a “pep rally” for Modi.

“Modi’s hands are stained with blood,” I stated at the city council meeting. “Those who shake his hand in welcome cannot wash their hands of complicity in his crimes.”

“Howdy Modi” is being organized by leaders of US branches of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). The RSS, often referred to as a paramilitary, is infamous for its members dressing in uniforms which strongly resemble those worn by members of the Hitler Youth.

It was founded in 1925, the same year that the Nazi party was reformulated with Hitler as its leader. In addition to drawing inspiration from the Nazis, the RSS modeled itself after Mussolini’s fascist movement in Italy.

M S Golwalkar, who headed the RSS from 1940 to 1973, wrote glowingly in support of Nazi racial policy. Golwalkar described those who refuse to “glorify the Hindu Race and Nation” as “traitors” and called it treason for an Indian to convert away from Hinduism.

In 1939, he further wrote, “To keep up the purity of the race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic races, the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here.” He called this “a good lesson for us in Hindustan to learn and profit by.”

The RSS has been repeatedly accused of instigating violence. It has been banned several times, the first time following the assassination of M K Gandhi by a former RSS member. In 2002, Human Rights Watch named the RSS and its subsidiaries as the groups responsible for an anti-Muslim pogrom that killed 2,000 in the Indian state of Gujarat.

In 2012, Swami Aseemanand, a full-time RSS worker, confessed to orchestrating several terrorist bombings which claimed hundreds of lives from 2006 to 2008.

In its June 2019 report, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom warned that the RSS’s agenda “to alienate non-Hindus or lower-caste Hindus is a significant contributor to the rise of religious violence and persecution.”

In my remarks protesting the City of Houston’s participation in “Howdy Modi,” I urged them to instead say “Adios Modi.” My full remarks were as follows:

  • Last month, a white supremacist terrorist murdered 22 people in El Paso, Texas.
  • His evil act was inspired by the murder of 51 people at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.
  • That man’s evil act was inspired by the murder of 77 people in Norway in 2011.
  • In Norway, terrorist Anders Breivik left a manifesto that describes how he was inspired by other extremist and nationalist groups around the globe.
  • Breivik pointed to the RSS in India.
  • He praised the “right wing Hindu nationalism” of the RSS and its goal of making India a “Hindu nation.” He praised the RSS for how “they dominate the streets… and often riot and attack Muslims.” He said the goals of white supremacists and the RSS are “identical” and that they should “learn from each other and cooperate as much as possible.”
  • The RSS is a fascist paramilitary founded in 1925, the same year that Hitler published Mein Kampf. The RSS developed with inspiration from the Nazis. And it produced Narendra Modi.
  • In 2002, Modi presided as soldiers of the RSS massacred 2,000 Muslims. They gang-raped women, hacked people to death, burned people alive. Leaders of the pogrom later confessed on camera that Modi sanctioned their violence.
  • For this reason, Modi was banned from entering the USA for over 10 years.
  • Today, under Modi’s iron-fisted regime, Christians, Dalits, Muslims, Sikhs, and every Hindu who disagrees with the hate, violence, and supremacy of the RSS lives in fear of their lives.
  • Modi’s hands are stained with blood. Those who shake his hand in welcome cannot wash their hands of complicity in his crimes.
  • Bishop Desmond Tutu once said, “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
  • So what then if you roll out the red carpet for the oppressor?
  • The philosopher Plato said, “Silence is consent.”
  • So what then if you raise your voice in support of the oppressor?
  • Rather than “Howdy, Modi,” the City of Houston ought to be saying, “Adios, Modi.”

Pieter Friedrich is a South Asian Affairs Analyst who resides in California. He is the co-author of Captivating the Simple-Hearted: A Struggle for Human Dignity in the Indian Subcontinent.

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Dawn – US welcomes PM Imran’s ‘unambiguous, important’ statement on Kashmir

The US State Department on Thursday commended Prime Minister Imran Khan’s “unambiguous and important” statement, in which he warned citizens against joining the fight in occupied Kashmir.

Islamabad Capital Territory – Pakistan, 20 September 2019. Prime Minister Imran on Wednesday said that anyone wanting to go and fight in occupied Kashmir would do a great injustice to the Kashmiris by undermining their legitimate cause.

“Such an act would be an act of animosity towards the Kashmiris,” he had said while speaking to the media.

Acting Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Alice G Wells, while welcoming the premier’s remarks, said: “Pakistan’s sustained commitment to counter all terrorist groups is critical to [regional] stability.”

The statement by Wells comes ahead of the address by the Pakistani and Indian prime ministers at the UN General Assembly on 27 September 2019.

Prime Minister Khan has already announced that he will highlight the Kashmir issue in his address, exposing the ethical and legal bankruptcy of India’s 05 August decision to annex the occupied valley.

Indian diplomats in New York and Washington have informed Indian journalists that Indian premier Narendra Modi will not talk about the 05 August action or its consequences. Instead, he would repeat New Delhi’s claim that Pakistan may send militants into the valley to take advantage of the volatile situation.

Prime Minister Khan has already made it clear that Pakistan not only opposes all such activities but has also increased its vigilance to prevent militants from taking advantage of the situation. Islamabad fears that India may use infiltrators to carry out violent attacks inside Kashmir and blame Pakistan.

‘India is stuck’

Prime Minister Imran, in response to a question on Wednesday, said that India, while stationing 900,000 troops in Kashmir, had always blamed Pakistan for instability in the occupied region.

“Anyone going from here will give them the pretext to blame Pakistan for cross-border terrorism and infiltrating terrorists,” he said, adding that India has previously accused Pakistan of cross-border terrorism.

“The entire world’s attention was drawn towards us, Pakistan. Now India is stuck.

“And the pressure is building up day by day.

“Now this is what I am going to say: anyone making any such attempt [to cross over into Kashmir to fight] would be an enemy of Pakistan as well as an enemy of Kashmiris,” he asserted.