Religious minorities in India have long faced persecution and resentment by dominant religious groups, but new developments indicate that the discrimination is not solely attributable to religious groups as government entities also become complicit in the acts.
Reports indicate that tribal Christians living in rural areas of India have been continually denied services due to their faith and minority status.
Christians who reside in India’s eastern state of Orissa, an area known for intense fighting between religious groups like Hindus and Christians, have claimed they are being denied access to government scholarships for education based entirely on their religious affiliation.
Local residents expressed anger over claims that authorities in the Kandhamal District have continually denied to issue government documents that are needed for local Christians to attend primary schools, colleges and universities. The injustice is the product of a government program that was created to help disadvantaged people in a Hindu dominated area of the country, according to reports from Christian Solidarity.
This most recent controversy centered on education has increased tensions in an already volatile situation in the Kandhamal District, where over 100 people died in anti-Christian protests in December 2007.
One of the hopeful students affected by these latest developments is Prakash Pradhan, from the Kandho tribe in Pikoredi village. He explained how local government officials told him he would not receive the required documents to attend school because he was a practicing Christian.
Meat-eaters “easily cheat, lie, forget promises and commit sex crimes”, according to a controversial school textbook available in India.
New Healthway, a book on hygiene and health aimed at 11 and 12 year-olds, is printed by one of India’s leading publishers.
Academics have urged the government to exercise greater control.
But the authorities say schools should monitor content as they are responsible for the choice of textbooks.
“This is poisonous for children,” Janaki Rajan of the Faculty of Education at Jamia Millia University in Delhi told the BBC.
“The government has the power to take action, but they are washing their hands of it,” she said.
It is not known which Indian schools have bought the book for their students, but correspondents say what is worrying is that such a book is available to students.
“They easily cheat, tell lies, forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit sex crimes,” it says.
The chapter, full of factual inaccuracies, refers to Eskimos (Inuit) as “lazy, sluggish and short-lived”, because they live on “a diet largely of meat”.
It adds: “The Arabs who helped in constructing the Suez Canal lived on wheat and dates and were superior to the beef-fed Englishmen engaged in the same work.”
Ambrose Bierce once noted, regarding India and their British conquerors, that:
In India one hundred thousand beef- eating and brandy-and-soda guzzling Britons hold in subjection two hundred and fifty million vegetarian abstainers of the same Aryan race.
“Tell bad words”? Proper English, which a good English-language textbook would use, would use “say bad words”, but it’s still a lie, like the rest of the garbage these vegeterrorist propaganists are pushing. (Don’t try to tell us the Inuit, who HUNT WHALES for their diet, are lazy and sluggish…) The rest of the bullshit needs no comment.
Starbucks inaugurated its first store in India on Friday in a historic building in southern Mumbai as the Seattle-based coffee giant seeks growth in Indian market.
“It is perhaps the most elegant, beautiful, dynamic store we’ve opened in our history,” chief executive Howard Schultz said in an interview.
After over six years of studying the local market, Starbucks is making a rapid-fire entry into Asia’s third-largest economy. The company, in a joint venture with Tata Global Beverages, plans to open two additional stores in Mumbai next week on Wednesday in the Taj Mahal Palace hotel and on Thursday in the Oberoi hotel across town before launching in New Delhi early next year.
Source: The Hindu. Read full article. (link)
It was one small step for woman – and it wasn’t very successful as Australian Prime Minister fell flat on her face when her heel became stuck in the grass in India.
Julia Gillard was on a goodwill visit to India when she took the tumble in what was her third faux pas involving her shoes this year.
She famously lost a blue suede shoe during an Aboriginal demonstration in Canberra in January and just two months ago she slipped out of one of her high heels while walking on stage at a function at Sydney’s Custom House.
This is why nations shouldn’t elect women as prime ministers.
There are disturbing reports coming from the northern India which detail the premeditated attack and assault of a Christian preacher and his daughter.
The pastor, referred to as Raju, was trained by Michigan-based Mission India and was in his home with other worshipers when the attack allegedly took place. Reports indicated that they were confronted by a mob of around 20 Hindu radicals.
Dave Stravers of Mission India, explained that he received word that the attackers broke into Raju’s home. The mob then began to ransack his home with clubs and other weapons. After destroying his possessions the attackers then focused their brutality on Raju, and then his daughter after she questioned her attacker’s motives.
After the attack, the Hindu radicals took Raju and wife to a nearby Hindu temple and forced then to worship the idols of the temple.
‘I would like to be an actress in Hollywood and win an Oscar. The only difference is my height.’
Bollywood just isn’t good enough for her!
‘I’m not looking for a boyfriend – but if I was, he’d have to be prepared to carry me around everywhere,’ she explains.
In a papoose?
On Aug. 30, 2012 U.S. astronaut Sunita Williams is set to embark on a spacewalk, the fifth in her career. Next month, Ms. Williams, who is of Indian origin, will take command of the International Space Station, where she is stationed for six months.
But what has captivated greater interest than Ms. Williams’ latest space journey in recent months is Sherlyn Chopra, an Indian model and actress who in November is set to be the first Indian to grace the cover of Playboy magazine.
Recently, my Twitter feed has been rife with folks comparing the two women, with many arguing Ms. Chopra’s achievement is more noteworthy than that of Ms. Williams. For instance, Twitter user @Sushoban recently wrote: “wd argue that Sherlyn Chopra has taken a huge step for India and Indians. More imp than, say, Sunita Williams.”
The BBC dubbed Ms. Chopra as a woman who “defied convention,” spawning this title for her in the blogosphere.
Ms. Chopra, told the BBC she wanted to pose for Playboy because “power derives from money. I always wanted to make a lot of money on my own, to have power from that.”
“If total freedom comes with the perceived notion of being a whore, then so be it,” she added.
The standard-bearer of the hamburger, McDonald’s, is bowing to local demand and is opening a meat-free restaurant in India.
The global chain, whose best-known product is the Big Mac burger in a bun, says it will be its first vegetarian outlet.
McDonald’s, the world’s second biggest food outlet after Subway, increasingly adapts its range to local demand.
Both India’s Hindu majority and Muslims can eat the same meat-free dishes.
Religiously observant Hindus see cows as sacred and avoid beef, while Muslims view pigs as unclean and avoid pork.
According to the AFP news agency, McDonald’s will open the outlet in the middle of next year, near the Golden Temple in the Sikh holy city of Amritsar in northern India.
Religious authorities forbid consumption of meat at the shrine.
“At the moment, India is still a very small market – we just have 271 restaurants in India, and across the world, we have nearly 33,000.”
The chain plans to open another vegetarian outlet in north-western India, near the Vaishno Devi cave shrine in Kashmir, which is a Hindu pilgrimage site that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors a year.
McDonald’s has moved to provide more salads and other healthier foods with less sugar, salt and fat in them, in response to public concerns about diet.
In India, its menu is typically 50% vegetarian.
Its signature dish in the country is the McAloo Tikki burger, which uses a spiced potato-based filling. It accounts for 25% of total sales.
A bag carrying diplomatic mail from India has been found on Mont Blanc in the French Alps, close to where an Air India plane crashed 46 years ago.
The jute bag was recovered by a mountain rescue worker and his neighbour after some tourists spotted it on a glacier last week.
The Indian embassy in Paris told the AFP news agency that it would begin efforts to retrieve the bag.
The Air India plane flying from Mumbai to New York crashed in January 1966.
All 117 people on board died.
The bag recovered from the glacier has markings saying “Diplomatic mail” and “Ministry of External Affairs”, as the foreign ministry is called in India.
Proprietor Rajesh Shah claims he was unaware that the name may cause offence as it derives from a nickname given to his business partner’s grandfather.
The ‘Hitler’-store has provoked outrage among residents and the small Jewish community in Achmedabad in the Gujarat province.
BTW, India has states, not provinces, Daily Fail. Can’t journalists get any news stories completely right in all their facts, these days? Sheesh! (They even misspelled Gandhi as ‘Ghandi’ in the description of the above pic… A British newsrag really ought to know better…)
Mr Shah says no harm was intended when they named the shop.
‘Frankly, until the time we applied for the trademark permission, I had only heard that Hitler was a strict man, he told the Times of India. ‘It was only recently that we read about Hitler on the internet.’
He says Hitler was a nickname given to his business partner Manish Chandani’s grandfather due to the man’s strict nature and has nothing to do with the German dictator.
After a visit by Jews from the local synagogue expressing their concern, Mr Shah has said he is willing to change the name but only if he is compensated as he and his business partner has run out of money.
Mr Shah claims all their funding of 40,000 rupee ( £454) had been spent on signs, business cards and advertising for ‘Hitler’ and that someone would have to pay for the re-branding of the clothes shop.
Ha! Good on him; I’m sure the Jewish community in India does not consist of poor people; let them pony up!
If you think your job is the pits then spare a thought for Devi Lal.
The ‘sewer diver’ from Delhi, India, is paid a measly £3.50 a day to wallow in filth unclogging the city’s drains.
Devi, 43, is provided with a bottle of bootleg booze to dull his senses before he begins his odious chore.
Scandalously the city does not bother to provide protective clothing so Devi and his colleagues are forced to spend hours a day in the filthy water in just their underwear.
According to Harnam Singh, the chairman of the Delhi Safai Karamchari Commision, (Delhi cleaners commission) almost 70 per cent of the manual scavengers die on the job.
An estimated 61 sewer divers have died in last six months alone.
Even though India banned the practice in 1993, government agencies still use thousands of manual scavengers to clean drains through out India.
India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. But poverty remains widespread with an estimated 42.5 per cent of the children suffering from malnutrition.
According to 2010 data from the United Nations Development Programme, an estimated 37.2 per cent of Indians live below the national poverty line with 68.7 per cent surviving on less than $2 a day.
Earlier this week Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced his country will be spending £52 million on a space mission to Mars.
I’ve quoted the entire text, so you don’t have to go read the article and see the pictures, unless you want to, of course.
I want to know how government agencies are getting away with breaking the law and not getting sued by anyone! There’s an opportunity for a lawsuit if I ever saw one… Of course, then again, this is India we’re talking about here, a notoriously corrupt Third World country; one with grinding poverty but planning a Mars mission…
What; ethnic strife in the most ethnically and religiously diverse country on the planet? Say it ain’t so, India!
Like a fever, fear has spread across India this week, from big cities like Bangalore to smaller places like Mysore, a contagion fueling a message: Run. Head home. Flee. And that is what thousands of migrants from the country’s distant northeastern states are doing, jamming into train stations in an exodus challenging the Indian ideals of tolerance and diversity.
What began as an isolated communal conflict here in the remote state of Assam, a vicious if obscure fight over land and power between Muslims and the indigenous Bodo tribe, has unexpectedly set off widespread panic among northeastern migrants who had moved to more affluent urban cities for a piece of India’s rising prosperity.
Police in the Indian capital Delhi have stopped prominent anti-corruption campaigner Baba Ramdev from marching to parliament to stage a protest.
Baba Ramdev and his supporters have been detained for allegedly “violating prohibitory laws”.
Known as the yoga guru, Baba Ramdev says he is campaigning for the recovery of bribe money allegedly held overseas.
He is also demanding stronger anti-corruption laws. He has millions of supporters across India.
His daily TV programme is watched by people across the country.
Last June he held a nine-day anti-corruption hunger strike before the police evicted him from Delhi.
His latest protest – attended by several thousand people – was held at the Ramlila ground in Delhi, the venue of his protest last year.
No country has as many stray dogs as India, and no country suffers as much from them. Free-roaming dogs number in the tens of millions and bite millions of people annually, including vast numbers of children. An estimated 20,000 people die every year from rabies infections — more than a third of the global rabies toll.
Packs of strays lurk in public parks, guard alleyways and street corners and howl nightly in neighborhoods and villages. Joggers carry bamboo rods to beat them away, and bicyclists fill their pockets with stones to throw at chasers. Walking a pet dog here can be akin to swimming with sharks.
A 2001 law forbade the killing of dogs, and the stray population has increased so much that officials across the country have expressed alarm.
Actions have consequences…
China has said it will land an exploratory craft on the moon for the first time next year, as part of an ambitious space programme that includes a long-term plan to put a man on the moon.
China’s third lunar probe will blast off in the second half of 2013 and attempt to land and transmit back a survey of the moon’s surface, state television reported late Monday.
India’s government has cleared plans to put an orbital probe around Mars next year to study the red planet’s climate and geology, a report said Saturday.
The mission would mark another step in India’s ambitious space programme, which placed a probe on the moon three years ago and envisages its first manned mission in 2016.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is expected to launch the Mars Orbiter as early as November next year, the semi-official news agency said.
Hundreds of millions of people have been left without electricity in northern and eastern India after a massive power breakdown.
More than half the country was hit by the power cuts after three grids collapsed – one for a second day.
Hundreds of trains have come to a standstill and hospitals are running on backup generators.
The country’s power minister has blamed the crisis on states drawing too much power from the national grid.
The breakdowns in the northern, eastern, and north-eastern grids mean around 600m people have been affected in 20 of India’s states.