Skip to main content

29th "NRC-related" suicide in Assam, as Nirod Baran Das takes his life by hanging on a fan

By Our Representative
Reporting 29th case of National Register of Citizens (NRC)-driven suicide in Assam, one of India’s human rights campaign sites has said that, on October 20, tragedy struck Kharupetia town in Darrang district of Assam, when a retired school teacher and advocate Nirod Baran Das “took his life by hanging himself to a fan in his home.” The report adds, “The NRC process has so far claimed over two dozen such lives in the past four months alone.”

Suspension of MPs from Lok Sabha is replication of Modi's undemocratic mindset during his rule in Gujarat

By Shaktisinh Gohil*
What happened in Parliament yesterday was unprecedented event in the history of India – it was an effort to tarnish the country’s Parliamentary tradition. The ruling party has the primary responsibility to see to it that Parliament functions normally by holding constructive dialogue with the opposition.
In the past, when the Bharatiya Janata Party was in the opposition, for days together Parliament would not be allowed to function normally, yet the speaker would never suspend anyone. Yesterday’s order by the speaker to suspend 25 members of Parliament from the Lok Sabha took the entire country by surprise.
What happened in the Lok Sabha actually reflects the mindset of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his chief ministership in Gujarat, when he sought to establish a similar unparliamentary practice. In the Lok Sabha, Modi only replicated a Gujarat model which he had propped up through undemocratic ways.
Between 2002 and 2013, as chief minister of Gujarat, there was not one budget session of the state assembly when he did not suspend opposition MLAs. Earlier, there weren’t any such instances of suspending opposition MLAs with such frequency. During the Congress rule, a senior BJP MLA crossed the floor, snatched a document which chief minister Amarsinh Chaudhury was reading, tore it to pieces, and threw it on him.
Yet, this MLA was not suspended for long, nor was any punishment proposed against him. Breaking this high parliamentary tradition, Modi would use his brute majority in Gujarat to suspend the entire opposition several times over during assembly budget sessions. Despite the existence of the speaker’s chair, it was clear from his behariour as to who was pulling the strings.
On March 2, 2012, as Leader of Opposition of the Congress legislative party, when I sought to place before the House certain details of how Modi uses corrupt ways to favour certain selected industrialists, the treasury benches created a furor and made a plea to suspend me.
My behaviour was fully in line with best parliamentary traditions, nor did I indulge in sloganeering or rush in well, hence the speaker was not ready to suspend me. At this point, Modi – acting through a proposal by minister, seconded by another minister – ensured my unlawful suspension for the entire budget session.
According to Gujarat state assembly rules, first the speaker should name an “unruly” MLA, and even after this he refuses to keep quiet, he should be asked to go out. Only after this if he refuses to obey can a proposal be brought in against the MLA to for suspension.
Despite this clearcut provision in the rules, Modi went against the law, and he suspended the opposition leader. It seems clear that Modi wants to repeat his unplarliamentary ways in the national Parliament.
In the past, raking up a large number of issues -- including the telecommunications scandal in which Sukhram was an accused, or the 2G scam, or Railway Minister Bansal, against whom where were no proof and was totally innocent – the BJP, when in opposition, would not allow Parliament to function normally for days together.
This type of behaviour was justified by Arun Jaitley, who said that it was a “tactic of the parliamentary practice”. Now that the BJP is in power, why adopt a totally different stance?
We are witnessing yet another Gujarat model here: The BJP, when in opposition, would hinder Parliamentary work till the resignation of a certain minister, against whom there was no proof, was solicited. But now, when it is in power, it is refusing to seek the resignation of its chief ministers against whom there is clear enough evidence.
A Gujarat minister, who was found guilty by a lower court of stealing crores of rupees worth of minerals, was allowed by Modi to continue in the council of ministers, even though he was a convict and a criminal. Modi also allowed another minister to remain in his council of ministers, though he was a TADA detainee under section 302, and also involved in several other criminal offences. Modi and moral have been irreconcilable entities in Gujarat – this is the Gujarat model he wishes to implant on India.
The speaker’s job is not to teach opposition a lesson, but to manage and regulate the ruling party. In Gujarat, Modi always tried to work out ways so that the speaker violated parliamentary practice. It seems Modi wants to repeat this model in the country’s parliament, too.
It hasn’t ever happened that the ruling party indulges in sloganeering and the opposition members are not allowed to speak. Yet, in Gujarat, after Modi became chief minister, when several senior MLAs were speaking on tribal issues, he instigated certain ruling party MLAs to indulge in sloganeering, so that they could not speak in the assembly. This is another Gujarat Modi, which one may witness in the country’s Parliament, too.
Under Modi’s rule in Gujarat, the state assembly met for the least number of days compared to previous years, yet Congress MLAs were suspended frequently. Data of 10 years under Modi rule show that as many as 259 MLAs were suspended from the state assembly.
If the country’s people and concerned citizens do not wake up to the despicable event in Parliament, Modi wouldn’t hesitate to further strangle the democratic traditions of the country.
---
*National spokesperson, Congress

Comments

Trending

India failing to dictate diplomatic preferences of Nepal, Bhutan, is unfairly blaming Beijing: Chinese daily

By Our Representative
In a sharply-worded editorial, a top Chinese media outfit, described by BBC as state-run, has said, commenting on India's foreign relations with its neighbours, that "speculation and suspicion" is "certainly not diplomacy". Published in "China Daily", the largest circulating English Monday-to-Saturday newspaper with branches across the world, the editorial notes (September 20) that "several recent events" in Nepal and Bhutan, are "gnawing worrywarts in New Delhi".
The editorial -- which comes close on the heels of a sharp critique of India's foreign policy in a state-supported Russian media outfit, Sputnik International, calling India's anti-Pak diplomacy as having "gone awry" following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "half-baked" push for anti-terror drill down "others' throat" -- says, the " worrywarts" include "Nepalese troops taking part in a joint…

Ahmedabad, GIFT, Adani city get 1.68 lakh acre ft Narmada water; Gujarat's rural areas just 4.27 AF: Letter to CM

Counterview Desk
Well-known farmer rights leader Sagar Rabari, in an open letter to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, has demanded a transparent account of Narmada water, saying, while he has received a "routine reply" from him to his earlier, the data emerging from his RTI application show huge quantity of water being directed to Ahmedabad, the 10 km stretch of Sabarmati for the Ahmedabad riverfront, and nearby elite urban areas, including the Adanis' Shantigram township and GIFT City.

Gujarat BJP MLAs, youth leader "incited" attack on North Indians: Cong releases video

Counterview Desk
Senior Gujarat Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil, currently in charge of Bihar and national spokesperson, All-India Congress Committee, has sent a legal notice to chief minister Vijay Rupani threatening criminal case and civil defamation suit for accusing him with "baseless statement" that he was responsible for attacks on north Indians in Gujarat.

17 lakh Jharkhand elderly, widows, differently abled do not receive pension: Public hearing told, aadhaar is a hurdle

By Our Representative
Hundreds of elderly, widows, single women and differently-abled persons from different districts of Jharkhand gathered near the Raj Bhavan in Ranchi for a public hearing organized by the Jharkhand Right to Food Campaign and Pension Parishad demanding the right to universal social security pensions ahead of World Elderly Day on October 1.

Ethnocide in Caribbean island filmed following award winning docufilm on Jamaica's anti-colonial Indian roots

International awards winner for Best Feature Documentary Linda Aïnouche for “Dreadlocks Story” (2014), which shows how Indians are entangled in the Jamaican society, and how Hinduism was a source of inspiration for the Rastafari movement, is all set to release her new documentary, “Marooned in the Caribbean”, which aims at documenting the awful desolating living conditions that Raizal people, the native inhabitants of San Andres Archipelago, endure.
Sons of slaves, these islanders have fallen prey to what the Colombian government calls Colombianization. “It’s a process”, according to her, “which kills the Raizal culture; it’s the killing of the Raizal soul. Colombianization subjugates Afro-descendants of San Andres to an ethnocide.”

Explorer, director and producer, Linda Aïnouche writes exclusively for Counterview: ***
Nobody escapes from blood and thunder in Colombia, and definitely not in the archipelago of San Andres, situated closer to Managua and Kingston than Bogota. The Raizal p…

India to deport Rohingya refugees, as the world moves towards prosecuting Myanmar for genocide

By Tapan Bose*
Seven Rohingya Muslims refugees who were held at a detention centre in Assam since 2012 will be handed over to Myanmar. The Supreme Court of India has refused to stop their deportation. The new Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gagoi said, "We are not inclined to interfere on the decision taken".

An elite Kutir set up by Modi far from the "madding" crowd: This Gandhi museum is formal, unapproachable

By Rajiv Shah
Have you ever heard of a Gandhi museum, sough to be projected as the “largest” on the Mahatma, yet totally inaccessible, in sharp contrast to Ahmedabad’s humble, approachable and unassuming Gandhi Ashram on the banks of Sabarmati, set up by the Mahatma during the heydays of the freedom movement? It exists about 30 kilometres away, its idea was conceived by none other than a person who has today become even more inaccessible than he ever was: Narendra Modi, India's Prime Minister.

Accused of being RSS plant, Modi man, Hyderabad Urdu varsity chancellor asks President to probe "irregularities"

Counterview Desk
Refused entry in the Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU), the central university's newly appointed chancellor Firoz Bakht Ahmed, who claims to be grand nephew of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, has, in a letter to the President of India, said that MANUU vice-chancellor (V-C) Dr Aslam Parvaiz has accused him of being an RSS plant and a Modi man, whose sole aim is to "interfere in the working of the university".

History less known: Kasturba's role as an independent woman and a freedom fighter in her own right

By Nandini Oza*
Even the most deserving of women do not find a place that equals their worth in history. Kasturba is one such woman whose contribution to India’s struggle for freedom has been exemplary, and yet, it has not received the recognition it deserves. Kastur Makhanji Kapadia was born in the year 1869, the same year and in the same town of Porbandar in Gujarat as Gandhiji. In fact she was older than Gandhiji by a few months.

Post-MJ Akbar resignation: #MeToo movement and fears of backlash

By Sheshu Babu*
For the last few days, #MeToo movement has picked up momentum and many women are coming out with horrific tales of severe harassment in their past lives. They are not afraid anymore to expose famous persons including those at ministerial levels. As a senior journalist Neeraja Chowdhury opined (“An exit, a beginning”, October 18, 2018, indianexpress.com), "The #MeToo revelations are like the eruption of a volcano which was imminent, given the journey working women have covered. It was not easy to make public what they had gone through,and take on powerful men.”