The Hindu – Government against “thinkers”, fosters atmosphere which destroys critical thinking: Sitaram Yechury

Tagging his comment with a cartoon on Twitter, Mr Yechury said the government was against the spirit of inquiry

New Delhi – India, 15 October 2019. The government was against “thinkers” and fosters an atmosphere which “destroys” critical thinking, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury on Tuesday said, a day after Indian-American and JNU alumni Abhijit Banerjee was awarded the Nobel Prize along with two others in Economics.

Tagging his comment with a cartoon on Twitter, which showed Nobel laureates from West Bengal, Rabindranath Tagore and Amartya Sen asking Mr Banerjee to join “the club” and to keep his award safe as well as thoughts to himself, Mr Yechury said the government was against the spirit of inquiry.

“RSS/BJP government believes in FIRs against thinkers and attacks on Universities. They foster a climate that works to destroy critical thinking, reason and the spirit of inquiry. Our Constitution speaks of a commitment to scientific temper but that would threaten the RSS/BJP government,” he said.

Mr Yechury said the government should focus on feeding the poor and building a robust public distribution system.

“First feed our poor. Increase subsidised food allocation through public distribution system. But the Modi govt is busy in destroying our social fabric, and in PR and tamashas. The facts on India’s Hunger problem are stark. The Economy crashing is not just numbers. It is about lives, but the Modi govt does not care,” he tweeted.

https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/govt-against-thinkers-fosters-atmosphere-which-destroys-critical-thinking-sitaram-yechury/article29689690.ece

The Hindu – Gauri Lankesh murder: Rahul, Yechury plead not guilty in defamation case filed by RSS worker

Both the leaders have also been granted permanent exemption in the case and the matter will be heard on September 21.

Sonam Saigal

Mumbai – Maharashstra – India, 04 July 2019. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury pleaded “not guilty” before the Mazgaon court on July 4 in a criminal defamation case filed against them by a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) worker for making allegations against the Sangh after the murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh.

Metropolitan magistrate P I Mokashi granted bail to Mr Gandhi on the surety of ex-MP Eknath Gaikwad and Mr Yechury was granted bail on the surety of CPI (M) party worker Shantaram Mankaumare.

Both the leaders have also been granted permanent exemption in the case and the matter will be heard on September 21.

Fight of ideology

Addressing the press outside the court, Mr Gandhi said, “this is a fight of the ideology. I will keep fighting and I am enjoying my fight.”

Complainant advocate Dhrutiman Joshi alleged that Mr Gandhi, while speaking to a reporter outside the Parliament, had linked the RSS with the Gauri Lankesh murder.

Mr Gandhi had allegedly said, “Anybody who speaks against the ideology of the BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party], against the ideology of the RSS is pressured, beaten, attacked and even killed”.

Mr Yechury also allegedly made a statement that it was the RSS ideology and RSS men who had killed Gauri.

Earlier, the text of the statements was submitted to the court. The Byculla police is investigating the case lodged under Section 500 (punishment for defamation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) in September 2017.

On February 21, metropolitan magistrate P K Deshpande recorded, “Upon perusal of the material placed before the court, I find the statements defamatory in nature. Mr Gandhi and Mr Yechury had no right to make such statements without verifying facts.

No investigating agency can conclude that RSS or its followers were involved in the alleged murder of journalist Gauri Lankesh. I find sufficient grounds to proceed against them for offence punishable under Section 500 of IPC.”

https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/gauri-lankesh-murder-rahul-yechury-plead-not-guilty-in-defamation-case-filed-by-rss-worker/article28281157.ece