Skip to main content

Anti-corruption rally in Delhi seeks investigation into Kalikho Pul's "dying declaration", Sahara-Birla diary

By Our Representative
In an effort to create public opinion in favour of the campaign on charges of corruption in high places in the suicide diary of former Arunachal chief minister Kalikho Pul, several civil society organizations took out a rally in Delhi, culminating at Jantar Mantar, seeking “credible investigation” about facts mentioned in it.
Noted anti-corruption crusader and Swaraj Abhiyan president Prashant Bhushan, who is also a top Supreme Court advocate, told the rally that “there could be an ominous connection between Sahara-Birla diary and Pul's diary.”
Called Bhrashtachar se Azadi, the rally saw the late Arunachal chief minister’s widow, Dangwimsai Pul, saying that her husband in his dying declaration had “written in detail about corruption in politics and judiciary.”
“I'm not fighting for justice for only him but for all Indians”, she said, adding, “Instead of trying to suppress the evidence and dismiss it, we need a proper and independent investigation into it. BJP government is not investigating the allegations.”
A joint statement issued by civil society organizations in the wake of the rally by the organizers said, there is “lack of action on allegations of corruption contained in the Sahara-Birla diaries.”
It alleged, “The Sahara-Birla papers show that the Prime Minister was the largest recipient of black/bribe money (Rs 25 crore from Birla and Rs 40 crore from Sahara, as per the records presented to the Supreme Court.”
Anjali Bhardwaj, co-convenor of the National Campaign for People’s Right to Information (NCPIR), said, the Modi government has “not implemented” two anti-corruption legislations – the Lok Pal law and whistleblowers’ protection law – and has instead “diluted these laws.”
Well-known right to information activist Aruna Roy, who is also a winner of the Magsaysay award, insisted, “The government is trying to silence us and stop us from speaking, from questioning, from expressing our views. We must fight together to protect our right to protest and resist.”
Others who spoke on the occasion included Yogendra Yadav, well-known political analyst, who is with the Swaraj India Party, and CPI-M leader Prakash Karat.
The statement – jointly issued by NCPRI, Bhushan-led Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reform (CJAR), Medha Patkar-led National Alliance of Peoples’ Movements (NAPM) and the anti-corruption team of Swaraj Abhiyan – said, “Instead of promulgating rules to operationalise the whistleblowers’ law, the government moved an amendment bill in Parliament in May 2015.”
Amendment, it says, “seeks to severely dilute the Act by removing safeguards available to whistleblowers from prosecution under the Official Secrets Act”.
The statement further says, “The government has not reintroduced the Grievance Redressal Bill, which had the support of all parties including the BJP but lapsed with the dissolution of the Lok Sabha in 2014.”
Pointing towards “lack of action on allegations in the dying declaration of Kalikho Pul”, the statement said, Pul’s “shocking allegations of corruption against senior sitting and retired judges, lawyers and politicians need to be investigated in a credible manner.”

Comments

ALSO READ

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.

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".

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.

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.

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.

Poor response to tenders for Gujarat's bid for the world's tallest statue, no international firm shows interest

By Our Representative
The Gujarat government’s claim that its decision to build the world’s highest statue in the world, in the memory of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, would attract “tremendous” response top international construction companies, has gone phut. The state government floated international tenders in August to build the statue, which is slated to be 182-metres high. Despite the “international” character of the tenders and big claims, well-informed Sachivalaya sources close to Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi say, “not one international firm has come up to offer to carry out the construction activity.”