Skip to main content

Why it is necessary to disprove Modi and his henchmen, who think: Hate, violence, discrimination must to cling on to power

By Fr Cedric Prakash sj*
In a powerful speech to world leaders on September 19th, Antonio Guterres, the Secretary General of the United Nations, kicked off the UN General Assembly 2017. We are living in a world in pieces, he warned the leaders; going on to add, "our world is in trouble. People are hurting and angry. They see insecurity rising, inequality growing, conflict spreading and climate changing."
Guterres went on to outline seven key threats facing the world, and the major challenges to resolving them: the risk of nuclear conflict, international terrorism, unresolved conflicts and violations of international humanitarian law, climate change, rising inequality, cybersecurity, and the refugee crisis. He concluded with an appeal, "my message to world leaders today: only together, as truly United Nations, can we build a peaceful world and advance human dignity for all."
The words of the UN Chief which revolved around peace and human dignity, could not have come at a more appropriate time, when several so-called world leaders are spewing the venom of hate, violence, war and even indulging in it. The world observes yet another International Day of Peace (Peace Day) on September 21. The day is to commemorate and strengthen the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples. It is therefore necessary to remind ourselves that each one of us is called to be a channel of peace and that we need to have the courage to hold our leaders accountable in ensuring peace for all.
Very significantly, the theme for this year's Peace Day is Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All. This theme is based on the TOGETHER global campaign that promotes respect, safety and dignity for everyone forced to flee their homes in search of a better life. TOGETHER brings together the organizations of the United Nations System, the 193 member countries of the United Nations, the private sector, civil society, academic institutions and individual citizens in a global partnership in support of diversity, non-discrimination and acceptance of refugees and migrants.
Many will certainly doubt whether some key leaders will take this timely theme seriously. Aung San Suu Kyi and Myanmar's military junta continue with the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya Muslims in their country. More than 400,000 Rohingyas have fled to neighbouring Bangla Desh in just about a month. Appeals from all over the world to stop this genocide have been ignored. In total violation of the past track record, India has closed the doors to the persecuted and helpless refugees. The war in Syria is in its seventh year. Violence continues in South Sudan, Somalia, Central African Republic, Congo and other parts of Africa. The hopes for lasting peace in Colombia, Venezuela and elsewhere in South America remains an illusion. Trump continues to breathe war on several nations across the globe. Duterte in the Philippines has no qualms of conscience in legitimatising violence and murder of his people.
Modi and his henchmen in India seem to be proving that hate, violence and discrimination bring them power. The brutal murder recently, of well-known journalist Gauri Lankesh is a case in point. In the not too distant past, the country has also witnessed the gruesome killings of rationalists and intellectuals like Dabholkar, Pansare and Kalburgi and of several other journalists, human rights and RTI activists. It is said that on November 17 (Modi's birthday) the Sardar Sarovar dam in Gujarat was lit up and 2,00,000 people (comprising farmers, fishers, potters, pastoralists, tribals, Dalits and small enterprise holders) had to be submerged for the Narmada Mahotsav to be a success. The violence against minorities in India continues unabated.
Pope Francis has consistently and unequivocally asserted the need for peace. In a letter to the International Meeting Paths of Peace held in Germany from September 10 to 12 he wrote, "what we may not and must not do is remain indifferent, allowing tragedies of hatred to pass unnoticed, and men and women to be cast aside for the sake of power and profit. Your meeting in these days, and your desire to blaze new paths of peace and for peace, can be seen as a response to the call to overcome indifference in the face of human suffering. I thank you for this, and for the fact that you have gathered, despite your differences, to seek processes of liberation from the evils of war and hatred. For this to happen, the first step is to feel the pain of others, to make it our own, neither overlooking it nor becoming inured to it. We must never grow accustomed or indifferent to evil."
Some leaders, however, obviously do not care with being Together for Peace and ensuring Respect, Safety and Dignity for all. Many people across the globe lack the respect, safety and dignity and the peace, which they rightly deserve. It is therefore incumbent on each one of us to make real once again the immortal lyrics of John Lennon, who in 1969, in the wake of the anti-Vietnam war protests sang,
"All we are saying is give peace a chance
All we are saying is give peace a chance"
---
*Indian human rights activist

Comments

TRENDING

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam*
RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

By Our Representative
Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book, "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Contempt of court? UP CM taking 'personal vendetta' against Dr Kafeel Khan: Activists

Counterview Desk
Demanding that the Uttar Pradesh government immediately release well-known paediatrician Dr Kafeel Khan, a group of more than 100 academicians, activists, researchers, doctors and lawyers have said in an open letter that he is being “targeted at the behest of the chief minister”, wondering, “When is an act of challenging the government a threat under the National Security Act (NSA)?”

ASI has 'no funds' to protect five centuries old Goa church, a World Heritage Site

Counterview Desk
The century-old All-India Catholic Union (AICU), the largest Laity movement in Asia, has blamed the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) for neglecting the historic Bom Jesu church by keeping its ceilings  open to the vagaries weather, with no steps  taken to protect the five century old monument from damage on account of impending rains on the lame excuse that there are "no funds". In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, AICU simultaneously asks the Government of India to devise a "comprehensive" national social security safety net, universal health Insurance and medical Infrastructure so that the “calamity” that has befalenl millions of migrant labour and jobless rural and urban poor in “the Covid pandemic-driven lockdown is “never repeated.”

A locked up offer? Govt of India 'not serious' in involving NGOs: IIM-A survey

By Rajiv Shah
Was the Government of India serious when it asked 92,000 civil society organizations (CSOs) in early April to “assist” state governments and district administrations in taking care of food, shelter and other needs of migrant workers, known to have been affected by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’ sudden 21-day lockdown in order to “combat” the spread of Covid-19 virus, announced on March 24?

Will Govt of India, ICMR end 'perverse' practice of extracting profits from ill-health?

By Asmita Verma, Surabhi Agarwal, Bobby Ramakant*
The Epidemics Act, 1897 gives the central and state governments authority to impose any regulations which may be necessary to contain the outbreak of a disease. Some state governments such as Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhatisgarh have already used this power to bring private healthcare facilities in their state under government control.

Coping with Covid-19? Options before small, marginal farmers of rainfed regions

By Biswanath Sinha, Kuntal Mukherjee*
The global crisis due to Covid-19 has hit after reaching in western Europe. India’s response to curtail the spread of the disease was quite decisive. It announced a Janata curfew on the March 22, followed by a complete national lockdown from the midnight of March 24.

Savarkar 'opposed' Bhagat Singh's, Netaji's dream of India, supported British war efforts

By Shamsul Islam*
In a shocking development, the student wing of the RSS put the busts of martyrs Bhagat Singh and Subhash Chandra Bose with Savarkar's on one pedestal at the University of Delhi late in the night on August 20, 2019. Bhagat Singh sacrificed his life for a socialist-democratic-secular republic and Netaji raised Azad Hind Fauj (INA) consisting of people of all religions and regions for armed liberation of India.

'Violation' of migrant workers' human rights: Legal notice to IIM-A director, govt babus

By Our Representative
Taking strong exception to the police action against protesting migrant workers off the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A) on May 18, senior Gujarat High Court advocate Anandvardhan Yagnik, in a legal notice to the IIM-A director "on their behalf" has said that the workers had only been seeking to to go back to their home states, Jharkhand and West Bengal, for the last more than 20 days because they were not paid their “earned wages because of the lockdown.”