Skip to main content

Saffron outfits' religious conversion is very clumsy, crude, says Madhu Kishwar, feminist-turned-Modi 'bhakt'

By Our Representative
Prominent feminist-turned-Modi 'bhakt', who showed clear signs of getting disillusioned with Prime Minister Narendra Modi by declaring he is under some sort of “black magic”, Madhu Kishwar has now taken strong exception to the recent RSS-Sangh Parivar move to re-convert Muslims and Christians to Hinduism. Commenting on the so-called “ghar vapsi” move being planned by the Sangh on Christmas, December 25, Kishwar, has sharply attacked Hindu groups for being “very clumsy and crude in conversion drives”.
Kishwar, who posted her comment on her Facebook timeline, wants the Hindu groups to get some lessons on how to convert people by first working doing some social work. She insists, “They should apprentice themselves with Christian evangelicals to know the right approach. If conversions are bad, they should be banned for all religious groups. If they represent freedom of religion, then all faith groups should be free to carry out conversion drives.” She adds, “Double standards on this issue under the guise of "secularism" has proved extremely harmful.”
Meanwhile, in an interesting move, Kishwar has shown signs of distancing herself from her “black magic” remark on Modi. In a Facebook post, Kishwar has sought to brush aside the comment she made before scroll.in journalist Vrinda Gopinath about "black magic" remark – which has gone viral on the social media – as “media’s penchant for sensation mongering.” Giving a longish explanation, she does not deny what she said, but regretted, it was nothing but a “lighthearted dismissive comment about black magic”, used as “a banner headline” by the top news portal.
The scroll.in interview, titled “Somebody has done black magic on Modi: Madhu Kishwar: The academician discusses the disappointment with Narendra Modi's government and vents ire against Smriti Irani”, said, she did not want to meet Modi and protest against the appointment Irani as education minister expressed her anguish through social media. “The reason I did not go to him was what if he had said, Madhuji, chodo na? It would have been very difficult to say no, and I did not want to drop this matter.”
It is not known why Kishwar decided to retract from her scroll.in interview, which is one of the biggest hits with a whopping 1.52 lakh views in less than 24 hours. The black magic remark to scroll.in was phrased thus: “Nobody can make sense of all this (making Irani education minister), neither me nor anyone else. It is black magic that somebody has done. I cannot believe this is happening. Maybe Modi has not got a grip yet. Maybe Delhi has disoriented him. But it is too premature to pass a verdict. I am still waiting. I am maintaining my distance.”
In her statement retracting her “black magic” remark, Kishwar – who during her student days in early 1970s was with the CPI-M student wing, Students' Federation of India in the Delhi before turning into a firebrand Left-wing feminist – said, “On December 8, 2014, journalist Vrinda Gopinath came to interview me about the performance of the Modi government and the controversy around Smriti Irani’s appointment as HRD minister.”
Giving details of the way interview was conducted, she said, “I told her it was too early to come to a firm conclusion about Modi as Prime Minister, but as far as appointment of Smriti Irani is concerned, I have not changed my opinion one bit about it being a disastrous choice. And my opinion was shared by a large number of people within the BJP.” Then “Vrinda asked her if she had “any explanation as to why Modi made that choice.”
Kishwar said, “My response (to Vrinda) was, if I could find a reasonable explanation, I would not have been so shocked. She then began hazarding her guesses and asked me if such and rumour about Irani was the likely reason. I said, it doesn’t sound credible to me. She then put forward a couple of other explanations like, 'Is it his arrogance? He thinks he can get away with anything, even a useless puppet.' My answer was the same that they don’t sound satisfactory to me. She persisted and said, 'But there has to be some explanation!'”
Kishwar went on in the Facebook post, “My answer was that none of the likely reasons she had offered appear convincing to me and then I added in a light note, more in jest than venturing an explanation or hazarding a guess. 'Maybe occupying the PM’s office has disoriented him or may be someone has done black magic on him'.” It was my way of saying that like many others, I can’t make sense of his choice of such an unsuitable person to head the most crucial ministry.”
But next day Kishwar -- who wrote the book "Modinama" in praise of Modi's Gujarat days ahead of the Lok Sabha polls -- was shocked “when the interview appeared on a web portal, the lighthearted dismissive comment about “black magic” was used as a banner headline.” She had this advise to the readers: “I am sure smart readers will read the line black magic in the spirit it was intended and not be swayed by the sensationalist intent of the editors of the website.”

Comments

TRENDING

132 Gujarat citizens, including IIM-A faculty, others declare solidarity with Kashmiris

Counterview Desk
A week after it was floated, 132 activists, academics, students, artists and other concerned citizens of Gujarat, backed by 118 living in different parts of India and the world, have signed a "solidarity letter" supporting the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), who, it claims, have been silenced and held captive in their own land. The signatories include faculty members and scholars of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A).

Amit Shah 'wrong': Lack of transparency characterized bank frauds, NPAs, jobs data

Counterview Desk
India's senior RTI activists Nikhil Dey, Anjali Bhardwaj, Venktesh Nayak, Rakesh Reddy Dubbudu, Dr. Shaikh Ghulam Rasool, Pankti Jog and Pradip Pradhan, who are attached with the National Campaign for Peoples' Right to Information (NCPRI), have said that Union home minister Amit Shah's claim that the Government of India is committed to transparency stands in sharp contrast to its actual actions.

Untold story of Jammu: Business 'down', students fear lynching, teachers can't speak

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released report, seeking to debunk the view that people in Jammu, the second biggest city of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) after Srinagar, people had gone “out celebrating” abrogation of Article 370 which took away the state’s special status, has reported what it calls “abominably high levels of fear” across all sections in the town.

Success of 'political' Hinduism: Kashmiris being depicted as antagonists of rest of India

By Anand K Sahay*
There are times in history when facts call attention to themselves; they assert their independence in all its amplitude and are in no need of the crutch of interpretation. Such a moment is visible in Kashmir now. Merely by being on the table, the facts there taunt the regime’s proclamations.

Gujarat's incomplete canals: Narmada dam filled up, yet benefits 'won't reach' farmers

By Our Representative
Even as the Gujarat government is making all out efforts to fill up the Sardar Sarovar dam on Narmada river up to the full reservoir level (FRL), a senior farmer rights leader has said the huge reservoir, as of today, remains a “mirage for the farmers of Gujarat”.
In a statement, Sagar Rabari of the Khedut Ekta Manch (KEM), has said that though the dam’s reservoir is being filled up, the canal network remains complete. Quoting latest government figures, he says, meanwhile, the command area of the dam has been reduced from 18,45,000 hectares (ha) to 17,92,000 ha.
“According to the website of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd, which was last updated on Friday, while the main canal, of 458 km long, has been completed, 144 km of ranch canals out of the proposed length of 2731 km remain incomplete.
Then, as against the targeted 4,569 km distributaries, 4,347 km have been constructed, suggesting work for 222 km is still pending. And of the 15,670 km of minor canal…

Ceramic worker dies: 20,000 workers in Thangadh, Gujarat, 'risk' deadly silicosis

By Our Representative
Even as the country was busy preparing for the Janmashtami festival on Saturday, Hareshbhai, a 46-year-old ceramic worker from suffering from the fatal lung disease silicosis, passed away. He worked in a ceramic unit in Thangadh in Surendranagar district of Gujarat from 2000 to 2016.
Hareshbhai was diagnosed with the disease by the GCS Medical College, Naroda Road, Ahmedabad in 2014. He was found to be suffering from progressive massive fibrosis. He is left behind by his wife Rekha sister and two sons Deepak (18) and Umesh (12),
The death of Hareshbhai, says Jagdish Patel of the health rights group Peoples Training and Research Centre (PTRC), suggests that silicosis, an occupational disease, can be prevented but not cured, and the Factory Act has sufficient provisions to prevent this.
According to Patel, the pottery industry in the industrial town of Thangadh has evolved for a long time and locals as well as migrant workers are employed here. There are abou…

Kashmiris in a civil disobedience mode, are going against 'diktat' to open shops

Counterview Desk
A team of concerned citizens, including Ludhiana-based psychiatrist and writer Anirudh Kala, Mumbai-based activist and public health professional Brinelle Dsouza, Delhi-based journalist and writer Revati Laul, and social activist Shabnam Hashmi, travelled to Kashmir and Jammu to understand the impact of the abrogation of Article 370 and the subsequent security clampdown and communication blockade on the lives of the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).