Response To An “Angry Tweeter”

Madhu Trehan responds to an open letter to her - and the assumption that she is prejudiced against Modi!

Blog post: Dear Madhu Trehan

Posted on on May 14, 2012


Dear Madhu Trehan

Just finished watching your interview with S Vardarajan of the Hindu, and the chat on the Aarushi/ Hemraj case, with Pinaki Mishra, Harinder Baweja (Shammi?!) and Sonia Singh….

I came away disappointed………I have held you, Ashok Malik and S Vardarajan (in that order!) a tad higher in journalistic proficiency and integrity, over the likes of Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Sardesai, Sagarika Ghose, Sonia Singh, Nidhi Razdan……..Arnab ( poor fellow) seems to have lost his equilibrium after Timesnow was hit with the Rs 200 crore law suit, and to make matters worse Vinod Sharma ( Cong fixture) plays nanny and wags his finger at Arnab, every time he strays….

Amidst this cesspool, Newslaudry [sic] was a breath of fresh air…but the stench seems to be creeping in. Your discussion with Vardarajan came across as dismissive and disparaging of your consumer/audience, the “angry tweeter”!

I wonder if you realize that this “angry tweeter” that u condescendingly refer to, is nine times out of ten, better educated, better informed, better qualified than the so called “luminaries” of your fraternity?…The fact that each one of you is “somebody’s” daughter, son, wife, sister, girlfriend cannot be ignored and is the reason why mediocrity is ruling the roost in Indian media today………and is the only differentiating quotient from the “angry tweeter”.

Pinaki Mishra ( respects), in the chat about the Talwars was lamenting that Judicial jurisprudence demands that a person is innocent until proven guilty, but in this case the media seems to have tried them , declared them guilty and the onus of proving innocence is now on them!

You and Shammi(!) sympathized and agreed with him, I could buy that…but Sonia Singh of NDTV?!! She and her channel have run a campaign against Narendra Modi for the last TEN years…tried him on their channel and declared him a “mass murderer”, regardless of the SC and the closure report filed by the SIT……what happened to “Innocent until proven guilty”?

“Credible” characters like Teesta Setalvad and Sanjiv Bhatt are paraded on Primetime and their word is Gospel…..SIT’S Raghavan, of unimpeachable integrity, appointed by the SC has not been able to find prosecutable evidence against Narendra Modi after TEN years….the Amicus Raju Ramachandran has agreed with most of what the SIT report says except on the Sanjiv Bhatt issue…Sanjiv Bhatts mobile records speak loud and clear….

Bhatt’s contention that Modi said “hindus must be allowed to vent their anger” to his officers ( his phone records show that he was not in that meeting in Gandhinagar at the time!) is enough to pin Modi. Whereas Rajiv Gandhi’s quote during the Sikh riots “When a big tree falls, the earth will shake” is legendary…but its ok to pay homage to his Italian widow?!

Siddharth Vardarajan’s heart bleeds for Geetaben…so does ours…but was it Modi who did it? Riots in Gujarat have been bloody and violent and recurrent, since Modi was probably running around in his nappies!  Maybe we should try him for those too…..

Vardarajan’s heart selectively beats for Geetaben…but not for those women and children that were BURNED ALIVE. Is it because he saw photos of Geetaben and none of the charred BODIES? His heart does not beat for the 5000 Sikhs killed in Delhi in 1984, because there are no graphic and gory pics…or is it because it was so long ago…or is it because it can’t be pinned on Modi?!

Teesta and Sanjeev Bhatt are kosher… regardless of how many lies and false affidavits she produces, or the plotting and planning she does via email with Bhatt, or the fairytales Bhatt fabricates…. The “Ceasar’s wife” principle kicks in only with Anna, Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi……

Ah well…Mr Vardarajan……there are activists and then there are some… Teesta is after all a Padma Shri…any guesses who gave it to her?!

Vardarajan saw photographs and spoke to some Gujarat victims and has concluded that Modi MUST be tried. I wonder why the SC bothered with the SIT and Mr. Raghavan for years, at all? Siddharta Vardarajan knows best…they should have just referred to him! After admittedly reading ONLY 100 pages of the massive report, he had the temerity to come and trash it on NDTV (yes! Any surprises?!).

Proof is actually the casualty of these kangaroo courts of the media… In the Bofors case there is conclusive proof against Quattrochi, but its OK with the media that he disappears with our money with no retribution. Sonia Gandhi and Quattrochi… there some connection? REALLY?!…on the other hand Modi must be tried personally even if there is no direct link to him….contrive a connection!

Why was there total silence in the media, both print and electronic, on the Abhishek Manu Singhvi CD episode? …the High Court injunction was only for airing the contents of the tape…there was no restriction on discussing the issue…the “tweeters” simply took it away!

I hope you get an idea of why “angry”?

Madhu Trehan, I would expect more pithy and pointed questions from you… u must keep the fish on the hook…

Or else we Tweeters will have to be “angry” with you too!!



Dear Rati Parker,

In all fairness, you have been asking me to answer and now there is time before I plunge back into work. It required channelling a serious thought process. Probably the worst format for discussing Narendra Modi and 1984 is twitter. The medium challenges the message on all counts. So I’m glad that you blogged on this. It needs airing on all sides. You say you are disappointed in me. I do see an element of “Why don’t you think like me?”. Well, I am sorry, I just can’t. I cannot measure up to someone else’s thinking. I am, I would guess, three times your age with a journalistic-bent life and a cynicism about politicians that excludes supporting any particular one.

I will have to answer you point by point.

1. But first I must handle what you wrote in your third paragraph:

The fact that each one of you is ‘somebody’s’ daughter, son, wife, sister, girlfriend cannot be ignored and is the reason why mediocrity is ruling the roost in Indian media today……

Yes, I will admit I am my father’s daughter. So are you. When I started the magazine India Today with my father VV Purie in 1975, he owned and ran a printing press (Thomson Press). He visited me in New York and brought a dummy magazine that he and his friend ML Bhardwaj had decided to start for NRIs. This was something my father wanted to do to help his friend who was retiring as Director of the Press Information Bureau. I had graduated from Columbia School of Journalism and was working. I told him his dummy was awful, and on my dining table I made a dummy of the magazine with the red border with my graphic designer friend, Rohit Modi (He was never paid for the logo). My father then suggested that I come to Delhi to start this magazine. At that time, Aroon was busy with the printing press. We were told by Aroon’s accountant, Mr Agarwal, that he had run the figures and there was no way this could make money. My father ignored Agarwal and said, “Let’s put the money in and see how it goes”. It was his vision. I implemented it. Soon after I got it going (with four very young, lovely people – Sunil Sethi, Dilip Bobb, Shirley Joshua and my sister Mandira), I decided I had had enough and wanted to go back to New York to my husband and start a family. In fact, when we did the second issue on over-population, I instructed Mandira to find a pregnant construction worker for the cover. She looked all over Delhi and funnily enough couldn’t find anyone. So my pregnant stomach was put on the cover. My father recognised my hand and was puzzled and half-furious.

Our office was a partitioned area and the loo was so bad that I had to wait to get home for any relief. After I left, a series of editors were tried and all failed miserably. Politically-affiliated and sycophantic. Then the Emergency was lifted. Aroon got interested and he made it the success it became. He has great editorial instinct. My dear Rati, it was work. We started from scratch, with nothing. I had to go to the layout guy’s tiny room in a haveli and beg him to come to work. There are many horrific stories, not least the pressure from Indira Gandhi during the Emergency. Albeit, I come from a background of privileged education but what about the failure of so many children of famous people who never make it? My father was not famous. He abhorred fame for himself and found the pursuit of it downright tacky. But he had vision and guts. And he was grossly irreverent, a trait I adored. You forget that the nature of some professions is that they need readers, viewers, an audience. The consequential result is that you get into the public eye. That fame is a side effect not a goal. Enough of boring you with my story, but I had to answer your point.

(Okay, some detective work for you: What part of the story drops a point, left in a loop and never closed? What’s left out?)

I disagree with you about how everybody who has made it is someone’s relative. They do get a jump-start but it does not ensure success. The wonderful part of this decade is that if you look at the really great young journalists now successful, they all come from what would be called “humble” backgrounds and small towns. It is a new India where the cliques that my generation had from growing up in the same elite schools and social circles are quickly vanishing. I am optimistic about true merit and drive taking over.

2. I do not recall at any point showing any empathy for the Talwars. I do have to allow people with a different point of view to speak. Personally, purely on gut instinct, I believe there is something fishy about the whole thing. I am not comfortable about the Talwars, and their behaviour in my frame of reference and experience does not exude innocence. They worry me. But, since there has been no serious unbiased investigation from the start – in fact, the start of the investigation was seriously botched – I cannot come to any firm conclusion.

3. When we spoke about the “angry tweeter” it was about the deluge of compartmentalisation one sees on twitter. There is an element of Bushism -either you are with us or you are the enemy. Or, you are a paid journalist. If their views do not match yours they have sold their soul.  Are Modi supporters paid too, then? Why can’t we just disagree? As a journalist, I must clarify I fall into neither side. I categorically refuse to be part of any team or political party. Each incident and situation calls for a different response. The Godhra incident, whoever was responsible, cannot but elicit grief and pain at the gruesome deaths. The press, in my view, did not take it up as intensively as it could and should have. We wait for official investigations, which in my view, can be tainted. Justice Tewatia’s Inquiry Commission in April 2002 declared that the attack on Sabarmati Express was pre-planned and pre-meditated. In September 2004, Lalu Prasad Yadav’s committee consisting only of UC Banerjee, the former Supreme Court judge, stated that the fire was accidental. In October 2006, the Gujarat High Court ruled that the panel was “unconstitutional, illegal and null and void” (Wikipedia). There is no reason for journalists to have not carried out their own investigations to come to their own conclusions. That did not happen. There were barely any interviews of survivors of the Sabarmati fire on television channels. I do not recall interviews of families of those who died, which normally should be done. The story developed fast and there was a quick move onto the killings of Muslims. There is a herd mentality where journalists rush to where others have been, instead of going where they should: where no one has been.

4. When I spoke to Siddharth Vardarajan about his article, it was just that – a discussion about his article. It is rare to find a hard-boiled reporter react with emotion and I see that as a good thing, regardless of what moved him. It was excellent writing. Perhaps there is an element of journalism that lay people find difficult to understand. I have a picture in my home where I am standing next to LK Advani and policemen at the time of his arrest. Someone asked me how I could possibly keep a picture of someone who was responsible for the Babri Masjid destruction and the subsequent communal divide and violence. For me, it was the moment for a journalist. There is a sense of detachment in experiencing such events live.

5. The reason that you and many others see a liberal bias in the media is because there is one. Most journalists that I know do not support killings of any one community, nor fundamentalist ideas, nor violent methods to achieve one’s goals. What you see as Narendra Modi being trashed comes from a belief that mob violence is ugly and unacceptable. There is no evidence to show that Muslims in Gujarat had or have Modi’s sympathy or protection. There may have been many riots in Gujarat earlier, but both sides got killed. This one was a pogrom. As we all know, politicians have started riots for political gain. We do not know who started this one. Shouldn’t the followers of Modi too expect the best from Modi as their leader? As we demanded answers in 1984, it is the right of citizens to question 2002.

Can you please answer this, Rati – Should people like you and I accept the killings of one community, shrug and move on? I will not accept the violence on the Hindus who died in the Sabarmati Express and I will not accept the reaction with killing. I know of a bureaucrat in Gujarat who told his family details of what was happening and how he too had participated, encouraged by the atmosphere in his government. His college-going daughter does not speak to him to this day. She lost a friend.

So the question remains: Should we consider Narendra Modi guilty of tacitly encouraging the riots? Or, should we say: there was nothing he could do? Or, he did not know what was going on? Or, should we say: he did his best, but nobody listened to him? Or, can we say he was pained to see Muslim Gujaratis killed and raped by fellow Gujaratis? Or, can we say he has expressed any regret? Should he be tried? I don’t think so. It would be better for voters to show that a leader who can ensure there will be no riots, killings, massacres, would be their choice. And, when a tacit approval is given through ishara, no one is stupid enough to leave a trail of evidence.

6. Regarding Narendra Modi, first, I believe that he was misquoted or rather mistranslated in his statement. His statement on record was, “Kriya pratikriya ke chain chal rahi hai. Hum chahaté hai ke na kriya ho, aur na pratikriya (A chain of action and reaction is going on. We neither want action nor reaction)”. This is different from what was widely reported. The second sentence was barely reported at all. But, from what I have read of and heard from Narendra Modi, it is quite clear that he has an antagonistic view of Muslims. That troubles me.

I will back up a little bit. There was a time, probably when you were too young or not born, when Hindus were perceived as a passive lot and indeed we were. We were a beaten bunch. Not proud of our country, not confident to stand up for ourselves, our religion or country. Indian Muslims could commit the cardinal sin of cheering for a Pakistani cricket team and no one would react, no matter how much they seethed inside. There was a general acceptance of Muslims who believed in Religion before Country. I found this disloyalty unacceptable. Everything changed after the demolition of the Babri Masjid. The militant Hindu was born. Muslims now go out of their way to prove their loyalty to India and if it is Religion before Country, it is done with trepidation and secretly. As for cheering for the Pakistani cricket team? Nobody wants to be lynched.

I do believe that loyalty from citizens is an essentiality to living in any country. We may criticise, rant, catch corruption, rue the useless politicians, but we do it from the root of loving India as one’s own. Could we have brought about the change in Indian Muslims of placing Country before Religion without violence? I believe so. Violence only begets little Osamas being born, set for revenge. I think it is bad strategy, besides the burden of not being humane. India has a history of a country gaining independence through radical philosophy and ideas of non-violence. The nation was moved to action through Ideas and Concepts, new to the world. Who would have thought that Mahatma Gandhi’s tactics, which were considered harebrained by many, would actually work? How and why did we regress into following the worst methods to become proud Hindus? Americans have seduced the world with their capitalistic products: food, soft drinks, film, music, books, science and research. We Indians successfully transformed ourselves from a begging bowl to proud Indians by giving the world brilliant techies, amazing films, bump-and-grind music that plays in uppity stores in New York, food now as common worldwide as Chinese restaurants, fashion that inspires Karl Lagerfeld, an export garment industry that reached the far corners of the market, authors who win international prizes and have bestsellers around the world. We now export cars and I must confess I felt a twinge of national pride when I saw train bogeys, in a small train station in England, with Tata Steel emblazoned on the side.

I am reflecting that we have had choices that we have not seen. We have been blind to options in taking a direction that the world has not taken. With the liberalisation of the economy, we have absorbed the worst of the capitalistic system; greed without a care for other humans or civic and social responsibility. The side effects are the epidemics of crime, rape, road rage, twitter rage, as well as political and corporate corruption. An intangible atmosphere can create disastrous tangible results. We had the choice of creating a humane society while using the benefits of capitalism, and still keeping core values as the cornerstone of our lives.

In every way, we fall into stereotypes unthinkingly. I think of my father who in 1946, after fleeing from Lahore, seeing my grandmother’s Lahore house in flames, losing everything, still going back to Lahore every year to maintain his close friendships with his now-Pakistani friends. I do not advocate turning the other cheek. I do advocate that our confidence and strength come from a sense of morality, humanity and joy of life and goodness. Mahatma Gandhi, the biggest spin doctor of them all, sold an emotion: a sense that we Indians can govern ourselves, we can take decisions, we can sort out our own country without a white boot on our backs.

My question is: do we have to kill Muslims and make them fear us to gain our Hindu identity? I think not. We gained our new self-confidence of being Indian through positive means. There is no reason for us to go around destroying masjids, killing Muslims to gain that self-confidence. I view us Indians as better than that. We were capable of it through the independence movement and we are capable of it now. It requires imaginative leaders who understand the importance of creating a national character by demanding action from the people, based on a humane philosophy where we collectively take responsibility for every human around us. Right now, we are all behaving like spoilt brats complaining about the government. It is a colonial-native attitude ingrained in us. We have not put our own stakes in. We still consider the government as one who has to deliver everything. Yes, of course, but what are we as citizens contributing? We see the government as alien, not ours. No government has been courageous enough to demand from citizens. They are afraid, so in turn we get sops to quiet us down; like brats do when they whine too much.

No mass violence can take place without the approval of the leaders. Rajiv Gandhi made that clear when he made the statement: “When a big tree falls, the earth shakes”. It was and is unacceptable. His personal grief translated into ordinary men becoming killers. I don’t need an investigation or committees that sit for decades to tell me that. His statement tells me all I need to know. He created an intangible, revengeful atmosphere and that statement was more than enough to prove it. Nothing can condone killing innocent people at random to teach a community a lesson. A lesson can be taught in so many other creative ways. (Why did Nelson Mandela come up with the novel idea of a Truth and Reconciliation Committee? Didn’t the black South Africans want to take revenge on their White torturers and rapists? The earth could have shaken and there could have been a chain reaction. But, Mandela turned it around and pulled his country together.) 1984 cannot be a justification for Gujarat 2002. There can be no justification for either killing. I don’t need official reports to decide who was right or wrong. I only have to see what the leaders said and how they behaved at that time. I know that I do not want my country to endorse massacres of any community. Today it is Sikhs, then Muslims, then Christians, then Biharis, then Marwaris, then Punjabis, everyone’s turn can come. Bringing up Teesta Setalvad, Sanjeev Bhatt etc and tit for tatting by choosing which committee reports and judgments match one’s own beliefs, ignores the larger picture for India.

So whether Rajiv Gandhi and Narendra Modi were directly responsible for the massacres is an irrelevant point. Was an atmosphere created by both leaders that turned good men into evil killers? I would say both were responsible. Hannah Arendt reported for The New Yorker in 1961 covering Adolf Eichmann’s trial. (Arendt followed it up with her book, The Banality of Evil.) She wrote that evil does not appear as a monster. It comes in the face of ordinary men. Arendt wrote about how very ordinary people can become quite actively guilty of horrendous crimes. Men who would normally not think of committing heinous acts, but a culture is created where they are made comfortable enough to believe that it is the right thing to do. They know they are safe to do so in that milieu. When a man acts alone (perhaps in a spontaneous, emotional reaction), it is seen as murder. If a crowd does it together, it is seen as “the earth shakes” or a “chain reaction” and therefore acceptable. Leaders of depth and vision could not react like that. Diehard Hindus such as AB Vajpayee and Arun Shourie did not condone 2002.

Am I prepared to overlook Rajiv Gandhi and Narendra Modi’s statements because they could be (or have been) good leaders, which Modi certainly is? No, personally, I am not and will not. I want more for India. Of course I would like Modi to bring investment into India, create infrastructure, have a government that actually works, spread electricity without blackouts – like he has done in Gujarat. But, I want all that without the threat of violence and ethnic division. I want us to stick to the Constitution that our country was based on and not become another Pakistan. I want a confident India who leads the world in ethical and moral superiority. I want to maintain an India that has welcomed all; where minorities’ minds are without fear so we can hold our heads high. I am naïve enough to want it all.

And yes, I am cheesy enough and naïve enough to include this poem:

Where The Mind Is Without Fear

Rabindranath Tagore

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high

Where knowledge is free

Where the world has not been broken up into fragments

By narrow domestic walls

Where words come out from the depth of truth

Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection

Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way

Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit

Where the mind is led forward by thee

Into ever-widening thought and action

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake. 



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  • Illuminating reply

    • I have a question. I am not from the field of journalism, so pardon me for my ignorance of how journalism actually works. To quote you — “There is no reason for journalists to have not carried out their own investigations to come to their own conclusions. That did not happen.” My question is – Is it a correct thing to do for a journalist, to draw a conclusion? How does a common man like me decide that a journalist’s opinions are not biased or he is not ‘jumping’ to a conclusion?

      • angrytweeter

        Wow Lengthy…….. reply. But I don’t see how you have justified most of the questions put across. Good try though.

      • Madhu

        When there are conflicting reports and judgements journalists must investigate. Journalists can put facts out and the reader can come to his own conclusions. Can they be selective facts? Yes.

        • Abhay

          Don’t you think the job of a journalist is to be a watch-dog and not a lap-dog? Even a naive would ,by just randomly cruising through the various channels can make that out.

          • Yogesh Jain

            But the problem we now have is – all channels seems to have a common mind in bashing certain people and upholding anything so-called-sane. Vinod Sharma, Sanjay Jha, Manishankar Aiyar, Salman Khurshid all stink but still they are on the channels day after day. Madhu Trehan is right Journalists can put out selective facts… Also please also note the schools of MSM. NDTV gave rise to IBN7, India TV, Times Now; other is India Today’s Aaj Tak, Headlines Today. When these two group have same ideology on some issue – the whole of MSM other than Doordarshan becomes one nasty combination. Zee has less been in discussion mode and ABP I have to research about – but there ladies go on for discussion regardless of import of the matter.

  • Ashish

    Excellent reply, but you have skirted Rati’s main grouse against mainstream english media – that it is biased in favor of the Gandhi family. Though you have taken pains to point out that you view both Rajiv Gandhi & NaMo as equally culpable for creating an atmosphere of vendetta, you ignore the fact that Rajiv was never considered a mass-murderer by the liberal media. English media didn’t run a vilification campaign against him or considered him unfit to run the country because of the riots. Unless mainstream media in India learns to be unbiased and objective in their evaluation of various riots that have plagued India since its independence, angry tweeters will continue to remain angry..

    • Dinipc

      On the other hand, they welcome making money from the ads on Rajiv Gandhi that the government regularly doles out for them.

      • Yogesh Jain

        I think the biggest problem for media is getting money bags from Congress from last 50 years. Some sane voices are there but get conveniently buried under loads of money thrown to change what is printed or shown. I have seen even Hindi newspapers (e.g.Indore’s Naidunia) taking unabashed side of congress for its partisan support.

  • Ashok Jahnavi Prasad

    Thanks Madhu for saying what needed to be said ! I have always maintained that I would seriously consider abjuring my Indianness-something that is very precious to me-if the Indian state were to either become a totalitarian dictatorship OR if it turned into a theocratic chimera ! I very nearly turned into a Bakunin type anarchist in 1975-25th June to be exact when all my rights guaranteed by the Constitution that my forbears had so assiduously fought for,were arbitrarily suspended. Anyone,any official could shoot us and not have to explain-all because a PM declared corrupt was trying to desperately hold on to her position! We reasoned that as it was not our government,we would adopt sabotage ; flattening the wheels of official cars and inserting sugar in the petrol tanks-with our faces blackened in the darkness that night offered. From a medical student to an anarchist-quite a journey! And then we had to put up with the ignominy of dealing with the compliant Supreme Court that ruled that even habeas corpus was suspended for us-the Indian citizens! Justice Hamidullah Beg disgraced the Court by stating that all detained under MISA were being given ‘maternal treatment’! I recall wryly remaking that now we knew what sort of relationship Justice Beg must have had with his mother! Only one judge dissented-the brave Justice Hansraj Khanna! He was next in line for the CJ’s post-he was superceded and no prizes for guessing who was made the CJ by Indira! One other judge who was on the Bench was PN Bhagwati. I was so upset with him that years later when as CJ he visited London and I was a guest at the party in his honour,I confronted him impudently and just said that I was deeply disappointed with his ruling!He smiled-since then he has I believe admitted he was in error and we both are elected Foreign Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences,the leading learned body in the world. I stress this here to point out to the correspondent that those who have been through state oppression can NEVER ever support what went on in 1984 or 2002 ! Pity no journalist thought of reminding those who were born after the Emergency or are too young to remember it the horrors on the anniversary-25th June! I was deeply saddened!

    I am on record having condemned Rajiv’s deeply insensitive statement in an interview. I personally know several Sikhs who lost family members or had their properties destroyed! And it is a matter of eternal shame that those who encouraged them found places in the Cabinet! Equally I suffered from a sense of deep alienation when the 2002 pogrom happened. I remember I was in Seychelles then and seriously contemplated whether India held a future for me any longer ! I am glad I decided to come back -and make my voice heard!

    Even if the courts find Modi innocent , I would still be worried-after all 3000 people lost their lives and the state which was in a position to stop it did not ! Maybe Modi was not directly responsible -I simply do not know- but my heart bleeds for 3000 people who lost their lives-both Hindus and Muslims! And it happened during Modi’s watch!

    As a philosopher, I have often wondered what sustains a nation -have written about it and lectured ! For a nation to sustain itself,the people must inwardly feel that they all belong to each other ! In my reckoning religions have proved an impediment towards this goal-at least in the Indian sub-continent !

    I carry a deep sense of guilt that we have not been able to instill this sense of belonging within us to bequeath our posterity with a better future-as our parents did !

    The future belongs to Ms.Parker,not to senior citizens like us – we have played our innings! My humble humble request to Ms.Parker is-PLEASE PLEASE TRY TO SEE THE HUMAN BEING BENEATH ALL THESE LABELS-Hindus,Muslims etc ! You will find so much of commonality that perhaps like me you will begin to wonder if there is any real justification in maintaining this superfluous distinction!!!

    • We live in times where we cannot look events in isolation, all those Pant’s & Joshi’s in Uttaranchal hills will tell you what their 3 generations back saw beeing butchered in thousands…….in the name of religion…………..the only thing that can work ….is if religion is practiced at individual level and no time minority or majority uses it as a tool for collective bargaining……………if its applied selectively than we are actually faking and selective in our approach………..I am sure you will differ…but than you need to know the otherside of the story also

      • Add to the fact, this particular community is creating rumours at drop of hat to arouse it’s people and our liberal media laps it all up without unbiased investigation. That “ripping out feotus” phrase now should haunt Arundhati forever.

    • Sir at least we must quote numbers which are now officially known to the union govt…..3000 figure is highly incorrect and false. You being emotional about if India has any future for people like you, I am actually at sea to understand ………if our nation is so flimsy that it cannot accomodate all hoe’s of opinion!! ………….If I recount my own family and relatives……..killed in several wars given the state of affairs…………imagine people like us must vanish from this earth……….

      • Ashok Jahnavi Prasad

        I am quoting from the figures that were cited in the Supreme Court in the trial ! But even for arguments sake if we are to accept that it was not 3000 just 2500 or even 1500 does that really make any material difference! I recall there was a similar controversy between different groups in 1984 about the number of Sikhs who were killed! The fact remains that a substantial number of innocent people were killed and this continued for a length of time when the state should have intervened but for some reason chose not to ! I was not there to testify the count that is being put forward by any group but I am convinced that a large majority of those killed were innocent ! That is what makes me ashamed ! And who said that different shades of opinion should not form a part of our country-if we were to ban all opinions except one,that would be tyranny ! I would like all shades of opinion to flourish-even opinions that I disagree with and to paraphrase Voltaire,I would until my last breath uphold your right to any opinion ! But opinions should NEVER get translated into violence ,terror and trepidation ! That is what happened in 1984 and that is what seems to happened in 2002 !

        My point is that we have to hold the person accountable on whose watch this happened ! In 1984,it was Rajiv-in 2002 I fail to see anyone other than Modi that I can hold accountable. I do not know if Sanjiv Bhatt is telling the truth-but a large number of innocent people died and continued to die for a period of time that is inexplicable.

        Even if you say not 3000 but 1000 people died,that does not obscure the fact that a heinous collective injustice has taken place. And let me quote my childhood icon ML King Jr- Injustice anywhere is threat to justice everywhere ! If the families of the innocent who were killed do not get justice,that would lead to a festering sense of alienation ! The same alienation I felt as a medical student when Emergency was declared !

        And to say that we should overlook what happened as Gujarat has prospered materially is as unconvincing as the argument that we should overlook the Emergency as Indira got India to win the 1971 war-or the even more odious one that stated that Punjab CM Beant Singh’s grandson should be absolved of the rape charges he faced as he had defeated the Sikh terrorists !

        The yearning for justice is very deep in all of us and needs to be nurtured ! That is one reason I would like the wheels of justice to acquire a momentum .

        I think it is irrelevant what Mohammad bin Qasim’s or Ghazni’s did 1300 years ago or their successors continued to do so in later centuries. We do have to ask a very poignant question – should we be held guilty for the crimes our forbears indulged in ! If so then I guess the likes of Udit Raj and Kancha Illiah do have a point when they keep reminding us that we have to pay dues for the injustices that our forbears inflicted on their forbears ! I personally take strong issues with them .

        Today we live in a democracy-or at least try to live up to democratic ideals ! We espouse a sense of nationhood that obligates us to feel the pain of any innocent irrespective of the label which describes that innocent.

        If we lose the sine qua non of nationhood ie that we all belong to each other,then no political boundary would be able to keep us intact.

        My own family was itself involved very deeply in freedom struggle-but what they aspired for was a sense of nationhood where all could belong to each other ! Clearly the anger and hostility that I notice does pain me !

        • Ashok you say you don’t know whether Sanjiv Bhatt is telling the truth or not. Really a no brainer at all; He claimed that he was in meeting; but his telephone records prove that he was not then. Then the conclusion is obvious.
          You say likes of Udit Raj and Kancha Illiah have a point when they keep reminding us we have to pay dues for injustices. Agreed that is why you have a reservation
          You say that happened 1000 years ago is irrelevant – if it is irrelevant – why not mention that this was Muslims had been doing to us.
          The point was all the secular media, Teesta & Co said Modi was guilty on that he instigated the riots, and asked the police to go slow. You still don’t have an shred of evidence even though you it was you instituted an SIT which probed into all the allegations. Having lost, at least loose grace
          Further, if you say that 2002 shold not be overlooked, then why should Naokhali and Great Calcutta Killings be overlooked or why shouldn’t 1921 Moplah Massacres and proclamation of Khillaft be overlooked? Who decides 1984 or 2002 is the cut off poiint? You? or is there any principle involved here? If yes, then I fail to see one. Kindly elucidate the principle on which you base the cut-off year.
          (You here in an editorial you and do not please take it personally).

          • Ashok Jahnavi Prasad

            Far from taking it personally I am in a sense relieved that you have voiced your opinion and perhaps you shall allow me to voice mine!

            Firstly it is not what Teesta says that makes me worried about Modi-and if you read my post carefully you would note exactly what troubles me about Modi ie it was during his watch a large number of innocent people were killed and for some reason the state that should have intervened chose not to do so. Quite frankly apart from what has been enunciated in the Supreme Court I do not know the other evidence she has let alone the authenticity. But we cannot deny that an unacceptably large number of people were killed and it was his watch !

            I recall a lot of Indira supporters claim (they still do) that she was not personally responsible for the Emergency excesses and that not a shred of evidence establishes that .To me that is irrelevant; all the atrocities happened during her watch and it is a matter of shame that we were not able to enforce accountability. I would apply the same principle here.

            I do not know if you are old enough to remember Naokhali atrocity or if you have had a chance to meet with anyone who suffered in that ! I know at least half a dozen who lost relatives-and their unanimous grievance was not against any system but the government that was not able to assign and affix responsibility to anyone. The provincial government had lost its authority. The British representative of the crown at the time was not made aware of the killings until substantial damage had been done. Only then was the army deployed. Which again is in sync with my position- that the first and the foremost priority is to establish accountability from whosoever was on watch and then to enforce it. Over here I fail to see who else I hold accountable- and if any accountability can be established on Naokhali and if the person was still alive I would most definitely want the wheels of justice to be set into motion. Remember ,most Emergency sufferers are dead-as some of the perpetrators. But those who have been determined to be responsible either by commission and omission should be pursued in my opinion-and in that list I include Pranab as my article states. As I believe very strongly that those accountable for 1984 carnage !

            Again I would invite you to read my post again-I DO NOT AGREE with Udit Raj ‘s or Kancha’s position that I who have opposed caste distinctions left right and centre should carry the guilt for my forbear’s sins-never have I even implied that I support their position which I find illogical!

            You mention Bhatt’s telephone records. Quite frankly I base my unease with Modi not on whether Bhatt is telling the truth or not. But let me remind you that states have been known to fudge telephone records-I am in no position to know whether that happened in this instance but I have strong suspicions about a similar presentation of telephone records by Digvijay Singh when he presented the supposed proof of his bonhomie with Hemant Karkare ! However as I pointed out my unease does not hinge on that at all !

            Sure history books are full of details of the atrocities from external invaders and their religions have been identified-but if that was the position in medevial times I do not know how relevant it is as an indicator to present context. Recall that Crusades and Spanish Inquisition happened for centuries- that was the prevalent ethos at the time- and I never known those who suffered at the hands of Spanish Inquisitors carry a grudge against the religious progeny of those who committed-would be a ridiculous proposition if they did!

            Reading your post does make me worried-as I had said I am a senior citizen and if you are representative of the youth as I suspect, you have a bigger claim over future than I do !

            My fervent plea is please just learn to see an innocent killed as an innocent human being and not as a label!

          • //But those who have been determined to be responsible either by commission and omission should be pursued in my opinion-and in that list I include Pranab as my article states. As I believe very strongly that those accountable for 1984 carnage //
            And yet Pranab is acceptable as President?..Modi DARE not aspire to be PM..tad bit hypocritical and extremely biased….hmm?
            That, Ashok, was my point… you n i will be wasting our time trying to establish guilt and accountability…the least we can do is apply the same yardstick…age has nothibg to do with it!!
            btw do have a look at my response to Madhu as well …

          • Rajesh

            hi Rati, to begin with let me state before i begin that i dont have gift of word or a flair for writing. so let me come to the point directly. i was quite happy when i was reading your comments here.. and then i went to your blog as asked me Mr. Ashok (who by the way evoked respect by his views and i totally agree with him). but yeah coming back to the point. lets face.. for a REAL common man like me you are just a person wearing a mask for common man /writer and selectively targeting UPA or congress. i mean its so so apparent your support for BJP.. see this line “Nirmala Sitharaman, in her usual direct and focused manner valiantly tried to bring the debate back to the REAL issue…….”. i mean Rati ji, like every common man of this country i have seen enough debates on tv channels to know .. that all and i mean politicial parties and their spokesperson are evasive when it comes to them. so just one request.. just be honest and say that you support BJP and get rid of mask. and yes you do write well and i have added your blog into my favourite just like newslaundry but lets be honest. huh?

      • Ashok Jahnavi Prasad

        I debated with myself whether to add this to my lengthy response below and decided to do so. In case you have read my last article here you would have noted that unlike most journalists I have expressed strong reservations about Pranab – solely because I believe he should be made accountable and should not escape wheels of justice for his role during the darkest chapter of free India-the Emergency ! For that very reason I would be uncomfortable if Modi is not made answerable for something that happened during his watch !

  • M/s Madhu Terhan…. I nor or anyone has any business to question you on your belief as an individual, however, right or wrong they are. Genesis of Hindu-Muslim clashes goes back to 18th century and the wounds keep coming alive, the last major orgy was 1946 …15th Aug at Calcutta, 5000 Hindu’s were killed on day one of the rioting, these figures are not my creations they are official records…..reason for the riots were Muslim league call for hartal for separation of Muslim nation . As a young person I have seen riots breaking out in Hyderabad for no reason in 1981, some event in kabbah by Iranians triggered `15 days of orgy. I surely have not accepted division of India to make Hindu a second class citizen. Its big shame on journalists to propagate that Sabarmati express bogey no 6 burning was self creation of karsevaks without any proof. All most all journalist were hiding the truth and going by false premises triggered the Hindu backlash for which I only blame journalists for falsification and building a sense of desperation and hate and belief as Hindus as second class citizens . Without Modi at the helm, the riots would have been much bigger and it would have spread all over India. Thanks to his apt handling things got in control. Coming to the disputed structure at Ayodhya…………..the courts have ruled in favour of what Sangh Parivar has been talking about and also Sabarmati express killing has proved entire pseudo seculars to be wrong and in fact blame journalists who forget their profession and become activists. Again my serious question to you is, how can you ignore the other side of the story ?? and give some credence or investigate…some of the instances you are quoting also have similar stories from the other side….as a journalist its your dharma to bring out both sides and leave it to the wisdom of people to judge…..,people don’t look for your part of the wisdom as the gospel.
    Also we must refrain from shallow talk of muslim bashing without knowing about events leading to the situations, its unfortunate that english media does litle homework and gets ino sermon mode……..the wounds of Hindu- Musim divide can only heal if we look at all issues honestly…. comprehensively.
    We require people like Modi at the helm to bring the belief in the rule of law, which is totally absent in the times we are in.
    But M/s Madhu Trehan despite my strong views onthe subject we respect you for the work you have done as a journalist especially your weekly program on the CD was a big time hit .We used to borrow the CD from the sharing library.

    • Mr Madhukar Nikam ….I have no issues with what you have said but I fail to understand one single point of yours. What credence (or investigation) you have to suggest that “Without Modi at the helm, the riots would have been much bigger and it would have spread all over India”. Sorry but I find it quite difficult to digest that his handling of incidents were apt. When 1034 people get killed and 223 reported missing (wiki), it is anything but apt. Even Atalji himself thought otherwise of the ‘aptness’.

      • The riots were so
        wide spread and the collective anger of people was so high that only repeated
        police firing could quell the mobs, most
        of the rioting happened in tribal districts unheard any time earlier. It is
        totally false and bumcum that riots were state sponsored but for the fact that Sabarmati Express
        killings were being falsely being blamed as undoing of karsevaks ..angered the
        people…..and the anger was so large and so loud it was impossible anyone to
        handle. Within 6 hours army was called
        in …never happened anywhere. Journalist shy away to tell the truth that largest
        deaths ever occurred in police firing were that happened in Gujarat. For over
        living memory of people living in Ahmedabad …… there was no year left without
        communal riots…until 2002 riots. Godhra was well known for one sided killings……please
        check if any of my claims are false…..the Ahmedabad Rath yatra of lord
        Jagannath was never been peaceful. Baroda …Surat, Jamnagar….rajkot Porbandar and
        Bhavnagar were always on tender hooks
        for several decades…………………in the same breath as you quoted figures…until this
        riots always Hindu’s were on receiving end, with proportion to the population
        always suffered many times over.

        As far as the role of the army is concern, they felt outnumbered,
        despite a large formation being present in Ahmedabad & Baroda… by itself
        would make one believe the magnitude of anger over Killings on Sabarmati express

        The genesis of all problems in the belief that there is only
        one god and all other forms are worship is false, if live and let live and all
        forms are worship are worship of god if propagated by every religion there will
        never be bloodshed. Historically when I said the trouble started in 18th
        century, it’s because, certain Indian Muslims
        started feeling powerless after British took
        control, fear of getting swamped by
        majority Hindus was the reason of
        conflict. Today, a majority of Muslims
        believe that 1000 years of the their rule on India makes them natural rulers………the
        Islamic belief of Gazwa-e- hind ( capture of
        india)…. And resurfacing of Jesus and destruction of Satan form the core belief . Unless these sort of illogical beliefs exit
        things will remain the same.

        Also kindly look at all riots, on an average over 600 to 1000 riots happen every year, can I
        know who is responsible?? The worst
        riots as per home ministry happened when Jawaharlal Nehru was the PM in 1961, I suppose there was
        no trace of Sangh parivar to blame, its advent of electronic media that riots
        are getting captured and especially the English media is unable to stomach lot
        of ground realities…..and I am sorry to say many of the so called reporters don’t
        have time to fathom the issue nor do they find-out the cause. Till date no
        worthwhile journalist has made any attempts to find out why was the public anger so high that mobs
        became savages…….the story was true even in Pancham mahal & Dang districts……………….which
        are tribal dominated and never known for communal riots…except voting congress
        candidates all throughout their history??

        • Thank you thank you thank you Madhukar Nigam. Our country is filled with illiterate journalist who know more about European history than our own homeland. You nailed it. Muslims secret desire is to have green flag over Indian sub-continent whereas our attitude is , we r happy with what we have, just leave us alone. There is no way to prevent wrath of majority after burning alive of innocent 60 Hindus in Train.

        • crossbow_berry

          A riot taking place with the state machinary turning passive spectator is evident of it’s complicity in the crime commited.Why should the
          police not fire shots or water canons to quell the mobs.Isn’t it their job? You seem to be emotionally attached to the one view point, that you keep on repeating, but two wrongs does not make a right.

          • There was a news item yesterday in The Hindu…….

            Magsaysay award winner Mr Sandeep Panday visits
            a prisoner in Hyderabad hospital yesterday( The Hindu page 3 city edition Hyderabad Dt 26th
            Jun 12), the prisoner is serving life imprisonment for killing an ACP of police
            from a blind range while sitting behind him on a motorbike while they were
            heading to a communally troubled spot. Mr Sandeep Panday say’s let’s forget it
            ,the prisoner has repented ………….Mr Bashir the prisoner was the police constable. The communalism is so deep routed that ….except
            in Modi land no police can dare to say they have acted. Rapid action force was formed only when PAC
            of UP was found not acting honestly………………kindly give that credit to Modi…..

          • Chanakya

            That commission on Bhiwandi 1970 riot has indicted Atal Bihari Bajpayee also. That commission has written stories without any link on which cognizance can be taken. Else Congress would not have spared RSS or Jansangh leaders when Mrs. Gandhi was at helm of Affairs.

        • Karan Anand

          “The genesis of all problems in the belief that there is only
          one god and all other forms are worship is false, if live and let live and all
          forms are worship are worship of god if propagated by every religion there will
          never be bloodshed.” You’re so correct to point out the root of all the problems.
          If you had really believed in the above dictum, you would not have generalized the
          wrong done by a handful of people on the entire community. Know Thyself, Madhukar,
          your heart and your mouth aren’t at the same place. The course of the law should
          have been to bring the accused to the book instead of ‘punishing’ all the others just
          because they also belong to the same community.

          • Dear Anand I am answering you on the ground realities…giving
            one example of Bhiwandi………….

            Most of the communal riots have the origin in religious
            processions not being allowed, as denial was seen as show of
            power……………the story is valid for at least all old cities of
            India…………and many of these curbs were put in place in the mid &
            late 18th century……………these is to be seen as manifestation due to
            loss of Muslim power to the
            majority…………..Trying to look at short cut answers and trying to blame
            right wing Hindu groups for the communal riots will be foolish…….the malice is
            deep routed it originates in the belief that there is only one God and rest all
            are false gods. Some of our journalist
            friends the English media variety ……when faced with facts will quickly denounce
            religion…and religious practices……which to my mind is escapism.

            Bhiwandi is the example that comes to my mind, post 1857
            war, large number of Muslims …the Ansari’s migrated from UP faced with loss of power
            ………..Ansari’s are traditional weavers , Bhiwandi welcomed them…. On arrival in
            hordes they imposed ban on other religious and marriage processions to pass
            through the town…………..communal riots have been happening for over 100 years in
            bhiwandi ……..I suppose neither RSS nor Shiv sena were born then. The communal
            riots post 1960’s have been so frequent that the town had only Muslim
            population left and Hindu’s migrating
            away …………….imagine migrants taking over and locals becoming migrants ………………all
            for the belief that there is only one god and rest of the gods are
            manifestation of Satan. Bhiwandi is a calm town not because there has been
            change of heart…………….but the peace has
            been achieved due to balance of terror. Today,
            four decade long power theft by the looms was put to an end.

            For so long no one could place meters for power supply …………no one dared to stop power theft………… many
            MSEB staff were killed for making attempts to cut illegal power connections. The
            modus is simple vote in block…..people in politics will never dare to touch…..and
            do as you like! I don’t think there is
            anything wrong with people….but certain religion beliefs are not in consonance
            of live and let live…………..unless that fundamentally changes nothing will change………………ask
            any Islamic scholar he will tell you that in next few decades ……………….there is
            going to be a massive war and Satan will be defeated in the battle fields of
            Afghanistan and the Army of believers
            (islam) will conquer Hindustan………………..they will quote you at least 3 Verses of hadith!

          • Karan Anand

            @ Madhukar Nikam:
            The DP Madon Commission of Inquiry : Bhiwandi, Jalgaon, Mahad, May 1970 Toll: 164 (Muslims: 142; Hindus: 20) Probe:
            Bhiwandi has a history of police brutality against Muslims. In 1970, the
            figure of arrests of Hindus and Muslims was 21 and 901 for both
            communities respectively.

            Now if someone infers that Muslims were troublemakers more than Hindus then he is free.

            The figures of deaths were also thrice more amongst Muslims that Hindus
            in police firing. I am not repeating any Gujarat or Mumbai but would
            just recount for major riots that left deep scars on psychology of
            Indian Muslims.

            The figures of deaths of Muslims in police fining in Bhiwandi,
            Firozabad, Aligarh (1978) and Meerut (1982) were 9, 6, 7 and 6. Not a
            single Hindu was killed in firing by police in any of these riots.

            In 1969 Ahmedabad riot, the deaths of Muslims and Hindus were 430 and 24 respectively. I can present a lot more ‘official’
            data but none of them will seem to be correct to you. You have every right to what you want to think and interpret Madhukar.
            I’ll not like to disturb you more. Thank you.

          • Karan Anand

            @ Madhukar:
            Some more ground realities you wanted to make me aware with are herewith. I’m particularly putting in the observances on Bhiwandi, as you gave the example of that town, otherwise I can provide you with data on Hindu-Christian riots of Kanyakumari riots in 1982 and Hindu-Sikh riots of Delhi in 1984.

            “The organisation responsible for bringing communal tension
            in Bhiwandi to a pitch is the Rashtriya Utsav Mandal. The majority of the
            leaders and workers of the Rashtriya Utsav Mandal belonged to the Jan Sangh
            (the predecessor of the BJP) or were pro–Jan Sangh and the rest, apart from a
            few exceptions, belonged to the Shiv Sena.”

            — Report of the Justice D.P. Madon Commission on the
            Bhiwandi, Jalgaon and Mahad of 1970

            “The working
            of the Special Investigation Squad is a study in communal discrimination. The
            officers of the squad systematically set about implicating as many Muslims and
            exculpating as many Hindus as possible irrespective of whether they were
            innocent or guilty. Cases of many Hindus belonging to the Shiv Sena, Rashtriya
            Utsav Mandal (an extension of the local branch of the Jana Sangh) were wrongly
            classified as ‘A’ category and investigations closed and no
            proper investigation was undertaken into several complaints of murders of
            Muslims and arson of their property. No investigation was conducted into the
            composition and activities of Hindu communal and allegedly communal
            organisations operating in Bhiwandi but only in respect of Muslim communal and
            allegedly communal organisations. Deputy superintendent of police S.P. Saraf
            held private conferences and discussions with several leaders of Hindu
            organisations including many who were implicated by Muslims in offences of arson and murder.”

            — Report of the Justice D.P. Madon
            Commission on the

            Bhiwandi, Jalgaon and Mahad of 1970

          • Please put the entire communal riots data of Bhiwandi…don’t select and quote…it does not work

          • Bhiwandi recorded first riot known to public was in 1837, Vitthal & Rukmai idiols were smashed leading to rioting, the one you quoted of 1970 riots were started when Shivaji jayanti procession was not allowed in the town…………imagine …in Maharastra…Shivaji is the greatest hero… his jayanti procession not being allowed that too by migrants who came to etch a living…..something unheard of………you forgot to mention 2006 riots happened when ….police station was being constructed…………the Mob led by Congress supporter & public figure in the garb of Raza academy led the rioting……………you have selectively quoted the report…not indicating the real reason…..1970 riots began with throwing of acid bulbs on the shivaji jayanti procession ……..this is the evidence presented by the police is courts……………I am not sure how much you know about the reverence towards Shivaji………….

          • Karan Anand

            The reason you are mentioning has not been anywhere in the Commission’s report. It says it was deliberate inciting. You have not supported your claim with any reliable evidence. Please provide that.

          • Mr Karan Anand….the numbers quoted by Justice Madan are also not accepted by any govts…they say only 80 were killed, similarly the entire report other than Secular brigade no govt worth its salt has accepted and acted upon………….please look there are worthwhile reports on the net itself which tell you why Bhiwandi has riots………….you have not refered to lynching of 2 police men by the mobs in 1984! I am afraid you are not at all looking at the complete picture but selectively quoting!!

          • Karan Anand

            Madhukar, my friend, any commission’s report that shows the majority community in bad light is essentially wrong and hence, cannot be accepted. The minorities are always the initiators of any communal riots that has taken place anywhere in India till today. We don’t incite them in any of the ways. Never…. anybody who claims so is a traitor. It is in their religion to fight against the infidels, so they will necessarily create disturbances in the otherwise peaceful environment. I’ve never seen an educated and well off member of minority community creating havoc on streets during riots. Maybe you have seen. Getting education, earning a livelihood and living in peace is not their priority. And the pseudo-secular government (the politically correct term),is doling out enough favours to them in gaining these at the cost of majority community. These people are to get rid of for a peaceful society in our country. Would to like endorse something like ‘final solution’??

          • You again get to frivolous argument mostly illogical ….you mean the final solution
            is converting this country into Islamic Caliphate?? Listen buddy …this country has paid enough
            price over several centuries……several times it has been divided on religious
            grounds…at least since 1905 with Bengal partition on communal lines to the
            division of country in 1947……surely this bakwas will not happen ever…how much
            ever one may try hard! Equal rights…does not mean majority losses
            its legitimate equal rights……………whatever killings you are talking is beyond my
            comprehension as your story is stereotype and has no facts…………………don’t you
            think it’s funny argument from your end that those who don’t believe in pluralism
            have right of way………..

          • Karan Anand

            You got it exactly the other way round………..You are a victim of wishful thinking. By ‘final solution’, I meant the thing Hitler did with the Jews. Should we also take the same stance as regards the minorities?? That was my question. And make one thing sure, it’s not the minorities who don’t believe in pluralism. The ‘verbatim cut and paste from a secular site’ does not change the contents of the commission. Your comment is ridiculous. These report will not be published in communal websites as it goes against them. Simple logic. Borrow some reasoning from Dr. Ashok Jahnavi Prasad Sir. He certainly knows things better than you and has rational and unbiased outlook.

          • Chanakya

            Then why Mrs. Gandhi did not take action? It was an opportunity to grill her opposition. The Commission report was more of hearsay stories to please masters but not good at law or to for cognizance. No link of events or link of clearly named accused were provided.By the way,If Minorities does not believe in pluralism, how India got partition?? How Partition vote got endorsement for Pakistan?

          • Karan Anand

            My eyes are opened now. All the riots in Bhiwandi (including the 1970 one) were initiated by the minorities, inspite of being migrants and been allowed by us to make a living. How dare they…..?? They had to be taught a lesson, and I am proud we are doing that since 1837. Even then, the problem is far from over. I cannot collect the data for all the riots taken place there. Even the data available on some of them like the 1970 one, is hoax. The commission must have been influenced by the ruling pseudo-secular government (if i am not wrong, the CM was Vasantrao Phulsing Naik of Congress). I deeply regret what i wrote in my earlier comments. Please forgive me.

          • Mr Anand….freaked-out on your sarcasm, but, the real fun was
            about your verbatim cut and paste of
            justice Madan selectively reported from those funny sites of secular

          • Hello Mr Anand, please quote all official data for every communal riot of Bhiwandi…it makes sense and reasons why….don’t pick up bits and pieces and build your story…………….please confirm what I said of 100 years of communal riots in Bhiwandi…as true or not??

    • If Madhu was Indian & Hindu she would know, How much hatred Baber “inspires” in Indian Hindus- And no one asks, out of gazillion nonsensical mosques in country , why these “militant” hindus were after only Babri?
      We r willing to put past in past, and move forward as one nation, but this ummah, restriction on Tasleema Nasreen, Salmaan Rushdie , not developing relations with Israel due to “muslims” sentimentality just has to go. One nation, one Law, One Rule.
      Tell this peace lesson to families of Jawans who r dying in J&K from Kashmiri Muslims bullet,

      • Madhu

        I am of course an Indian & Hindu. But not every Indian Hindu hates Baber as u say. I choose to live without hate & do not wish other people’s behaviour dictate mine. I will not give Baber that power over me. I agree with you ialso believe in the Uniform Civil Code and the lifting of Article 370. I agree entirely on Tasleema, Salman & Israel. It is because of Jawans and their families that I advocate peace.

        • Ajai Paul Singh

          Dear Madhu

          I am your fan and i agree with your viewpoint but please answer this when non muslim countries have accepted muslims as their part and parcel then why still rage against other religions by muslim activists and why cant other religious groups go to Mecca. No other religion preaches this. If we dont act today there will be no religion left to fight them muslims later on. I would rather be Zero religion but that doesn’t serve the purpose. No muslim will help us or support us if we run in minority and there has been so many examples. Uniform Civil Code is good. Please also talk on kashmiri pandits.

      • Lakshmiji, you are bang on when you say — ‘We r willing to put past in past, and move forward as one nation, but this ummah, restriction on Tasleema Nasreen, Salmaan Rushdie , not developing relations with Israel due to “muslims” sentimentality just has to go. One nation, one Law, One Rule.’ Now can we do it without any bloodshed? I think so. Do our politicians (or the electorate) inspire confidence that they will do so? I don’t think so. Moreover I don’t see how hating Babur, after nearly 400 years of his death, is going to do me or any Hindu any good in coming formative (hopefully!) years.

  • A journalist who does not believe in inquiry reports,investigations and getting to the depth of the matter objectively,is NOT a journalist.Madhu just confessed to not being one.So Modi created an atmosphere of ‘killing’ troubles her(and for the record he did not) but does Sonia trouble Madhu for creating a loot India through corruption atmosphere in the Govt.

    • Madhu

      Yes she does

    • Madhu

      Justice Tewatia’s Commission said Sabarmati massacre was pre-planned & pre-meditated. Laul Prasad Yadav’s Committee ruled it was accidental. Who are we to believe?

      • Madhu…i know you believe in the rule of law….you also know the committee appointed by Laloo was illigal as per law therefore was rejected by the HC and the report was not allowed to be acted upon…………….any evidence has to be legal in character …………………..but, how many journalist have the courage to admit they were wrongly harping as far as Sabarmati Express killing goes? is it not dishonesty to the profession?

      • Abhinav

        Lalu Prasad’s pet committee was formed with the sole motive of winning the Muslim vote in the upcoming Bihar elections. Every other investigation has revealed that it was a conspiracy. Recently, the Gujarat High Court has CONVICTED Muslims who were responsible for carrying it out and acquitted a few against whom no evidence was found. The convicted were sentenced to the DEATH PENALTY.

        You aren’t really that stupid, are you Madhu? “Who are we to believe?” Who’s this “we”? You’re most free to believe what suits your worldview, which you have duly exposed here.

  • payalherechopra

    Madhu, why have you put your private correspondence as an article (or rather a ‘criticle’) on the website ? It’s an easy way out. Keep these things to mails, etc. Anyways, everytime you write you end up exposing your own ignorance and hypocrisy. Just spare us your writing.

  • IndianfromCore

    Dear Madhu, no doubt you are talented,
    informed and industries insider. I respect you for your seniority and hard work
    you have done in past. I salute you for opening newslaundry to show some
    courage. But as any individual like me and you we have set of values and
    preferences, we are bound to be tilt towards person news which suits to our
    ideology and value system. I salute you for opening newslaundry to show some
    courage. What I do not agree with you is your knowledge, experience and definitions
    of free journalism, secularism, democracy and value system. I find them too
    western and not fit into Indian system, this is not only your problem but most
    of the English speaking (especially those who are foreign return with a self
    created tag of world view, and those too poor guys who can speak in English but
    could not put tag of world view as they rarely been out of India). Your days in
    aajtak, tehlka or other ventures had always some tilt in reporting, analyzing
    news or sting operations; which is suitable to few English literate public.
    India is beyond these hardly 2% audience. If you can understand politics you
    might be a different journalist and in case you are a person who put India
    before any individual / organisation / values / definitions you would have
    reported the matter more positively. Your answer to the blog is in self defense
    and not expected from you, you should have not replied point wise but what you
    are and what you stand for.

    You are confused as many other like you
    they are limited in number might be 1% of the population on account of Modi’s
    dealing on gujrat riots. You must have not know what Raj Dharm means – modi practiced
    raj dharma. Some time one had to take bitter pill for the health of the body –
    you cannot count on bitter pill and keep crying about it how worse it tested. Your
    comparing rajiv n modi is senseless as your understanding of india and
    democracy. Rajiv did for an individual and never ever questioned infected there
    are thousand buildings and schemes by government on his name. Modi did for
    someone unknown to him and for the sake of the state of gujrat – please understand
    the difference between state welfare and self welfare.

    • Whenever I hear the word “Raj Dharma” I am reminded of another word “Collation Dharma”. Media use this word “Raj Dharma” again again. But can some one tell me when Raja and Chindu were looting our country did MMS follow “Raj Dharma”. The answer is a big “NO”. What we were told instead was they were following “Collation Dharma”.

  • so much verbosity from Ms Trehan and what comes of it? An apologist defensive piece with such weak arguments. Larger picture…militant Hindu…scared Muslims afraid of getting lynched. Who’s justifying Gujarat using 84′?. Stop the bullshit. An insensitive person like you who pointedly refers to saffron as orange can only be expected to come up with such tripe.

    • Militant Hindu- Does she even know what “Kafir” means . Do we go around killing ppl who don’t believe in Hinduism? Are Vaishnavs/ Shaivites /Sharmas/Guptas killing each other? Look at any “peaceful” Islamist society before coming to us about being militant

  • I had no idea who this lady was, just got a link from Twitter and I consider myself super liberal but reading response from Ms. Madhu Trehan has riled me up so much!!!
    1) You r daughter of guy who founded IndiaToday. After that – you lose all claim to be meritorious. You ve voice which is heard loudest,does this make it correct- No.
    2) India is not like USA ,which has iron rule of Law. Problem is that you journos sit in your cocoons of Delhi office and judge every1 by elusive liberal standard- India was existing before Ravindra Tagore & Gandhi and escaped Islamization by brave Kings-not some one espousing values of liberty- See Iraq,Iran,Afghanistan,Pakistan,Saudi Arabia- This is what we are fighting for.
    3)Only Pogram in modern India is systemic cleansing of KAshmiri Pandits from their homeland and 1984 Congress led riots
    4) Muslims in Gujarat are still living there with full civil liberties
    5) I don’t see Muslims seeking asylum to Pakistan, S Arabia – at least not in front of Delhi embassy but Hindus from Pakistan are asking for asylum from India
    6)India was created out of Partition in 1947 based on RELIGION , in which ALL muslims gave mandate they can not LIVE with Indian Hindus. Why didn’t they all leave? Not out love of homeland-?? it was easier to cast a vote than to actually pack ur baggage and go in strange land.
    7)Have you asked Sindhis from Pakistan how they were driven away in 1948- whereas Hindus had accepted Muslims in India.
    Read right wing Muslim Twiteerati- their dreams of establishing Ummah. Denying and Forgetting doesn’t mean that nothing happend
    8) Hindus due to their religion are tolerant- there is no “believer” vs.”non-believer” nonsense debate so stop espousing your secular ideas to us.

    • Madhu

      You are one angry lady! Do yourself a favour and please do not read anything I write. I would worry about your blood pressure.

      • Dinipc

        Dear Madhu, angry people will read your nonsense and post angry, provocative responses. Deal with it just like we deal with the bullshit liberal media pukes out for us!

      • Madhu even though I like you as person and journalist but I am sorry to remind you that we r living in a democracy. Every one has right to have his/her views. So if you write something then please accept if some one critique it. I will really appreciate instead of doing character assassination you give point to point rebuttal.

    • Karan Anand

      In point no. 6, did you say “ALL muslims gave mandate they can not LIVE with Indian Hindus”? Also, as an observer of writing behaviour, I can observe the small letter with which ‘m’ of muslims started and ‘H’ of Hindus started. Does this signify anything important? An honest introspection will reveal.

  • Confused And Bored Reader

    “now there is time before I plunge back into work” – seems a rather long coffee break for you ! I read a lot of words, but as a whole those words did not answer the questions raised !

  • And I am loath to kill even ANT or a SPIDER ,forget taking on sword and starting this mighty Hindutva mission. But familiarise yourself with India/ world history -these “riots” were started in 700AD not 2002 AD

  • Dear Madhu & Rati Parker

    Let me responsed to a few points you made Rati Parker’s critique of Indian media and Indian (il)liberals today.

    Have you, Madhu, ever wondered why Hindus are more angry today than their fore fathers were? The Hindu recently carried an piece saying that Muslims were finding it difficult to find a house in Mumbai today and the author said that in her father’s time it was not so. That M.F. Hussain’s 70s and 80s painting evoke a more stronger reaction today then when it was painted. No the reason for all this is not internet or twitter or even the BJP/RSS. The reason is stances taken by pseudo secularist media, the general reporting trend, and the illiberal stance of the intellectuals. Let us begin at the beginning. Let me now count the ways.

    1. Remember Salman (no not Khan – Rushdie) and his book which created a storm and the Govt rushed to ban it. Funny isn’t it, that is not banned in Turkey or Egypt and India was the first country to ban it based on the fact that sentiments of people who cannot read can be hurt. (Justice Sachar tells me that Muslim literacy rate is lower than Dalits; remarkable that you get hurt by what you have or cannot read). The next best piece came from the media darling M.S. Aiyar who strikes a blow for secularism by not reading the offending book! . But then Habib gets removed as V.C. of Aligarh Muslim University because students sagitated because the VC made the statement he considered banning Satanic Verses was wrong EVEN THOUGH he disagrees with everything that author had written in the book. There is this UP Minister who in a public speech said that he will be reward any who manages to kill Salman Rushdie 51 lakh rupees. (Oh read the Asian Age, it even carried a photo of the Minister). Incitement to murder one would think. Should he have been arrested? The response: So deafening silently.

    2. Babri Masjid: We were told that by countless historians that there is no temple beneath the ruins. What does the archaeological report of ASI and the ground radar imaging now say? This has been more than adequately covered by Arun Shourie and those interested may refer to his book on Indian historians and Indian controversies. I do not propose to elaborate on this further.

    3. Shah Bano; The funny thing about Shah Bano was not that the Government made any change in the civil procedure; but in the code of criminal procedure. Shah Bano was awarded Rs. 179.20 paise under Section 125 of Code of Criminal Procedure. This section is available not only to a wife, but to parents or children of an individual and was designed to prevent destitution of dependents by a man. Yet now you have a situation where a Muslim parent or a child may and all others, Hindu women, parents, children can seek some amount of maintenance from a man of means; but a Muslim wife cannot. This is courtesy Muslim Men Protection Upon Divorce Act (Not it is women that is being protected by this law). This was a single retrograde step. Yet tomes are written on how unfair the inheritance, alimony laws are for Hindu , Christian and women from other religious groups. When MPs and media personnel say “When secularism came tumbling down….”, it makes puke. (Oh I forget – the finest action by a secular government is to subside Haj. Wonder why Muslims and liberals are not averse to taking Kafir money for performing their non-mandatory religious need).

    4. Genocide: Killing of Muslims in Gujarat was wrong. But it happened, we have to deal with it. But is it a case of genocide as the paid media calls it? If yes then what about genocide of pandits in Kashmir; an entire group which was only 2% of the population was driven out from the homes; mosques blared that we want Kashmiri women (not men); or you have to convert to stay in Kashmir. Yet this is not genocide even though it meet the classical definition of it. It does not matter if media keeps propagating patent falsehoods such as killing of Kauser Bi, ripping of open of her womb, destroying fetus; killing of Jafri’s daughters in front of parents (when the only daughter was in US), manufacturing affidavits, giving credence of false witness (Sanjiv Bhatt and his telephone records). We are to believe that media is acting out of liberal instincts. I say is media is just acting.

    5. Remember Jhajuba nun rape case (which the medical evidence proved didn’t occur any way; the medical report is an real eye opener by itself). How many know that Kandmal violence was triggered by Christians burning Hindu homes – surprised? Read the reports. Yet this trend continues. Recently, HC of Kerala ordered an investigation into a Pentecostal
    Mission which had been accused of sexual harassment, rape, money laundering, FCRA violations. SIT report did find substantive evidences to sustain all the allegations and yet not a murmur in media. Child sex abuse by a pastor in Hyderabad, a big silence. Sexual harassment leading to suicide by a woman and financial misdemeanors by a Church in Gujarat not a sound. Riots in Hyderabad recently on Hanuman Jayanthi. No coverage. You say that media has a herd instinct and did not give due prominence and coverage to Godhra victims. Godhra is is not an isolated case. It is part of a trend.

    Modi today symbolizes all this. He symbolizes vilified Hindu. It is upto to media to listen. But it doesn’t matter if you listen and have a course correction> what is see is a worsening relationship between media and public leading to rupture in consensus. That is why you see the Bushism – either you are with us or against us. Uphold same standards for every for everyone without exceptional-isms ; judge fairly; this far and no further is what people are saying.

    • Abhinav

      Madhu Trehan won’t respond to your comment. Don’t worry, dude. And if she does, she’ll write some other irrelevant-to-the-discussion nonsense with pretty language. Otherwise, your comment is better written than the article.

      • kamal

        like it…

        • Manjesh Hanawal

          I was following Madhu’s shows and got a feeling that she is neutral. But after reading her response here I am disappointed. It looks like no journalist is unbiased, everybody has his/her own opinion which they impose on their readers. Given there were two contradictory reports on Godra train incident, Madhu chose to base her opinion that suits her bias. In such cases is it not fair far a true journalist to just present the facts? But Madhu prefers to justify her bias. In my country its so difficult (or impossible) to find honest journalists. No wonder my country is in such a pathetic conditions.

    • slap on the face of pseudo-secularists … but don’t wait for them to come and defend them or respond them …. no they crossed another milestone of shamelessness

    • Aware Indian

      Outstanding comment, worthy of being published as an article on this website by itself.

      The way these pseudo-secular pseudo-liberals have just decided for themselves that Modi is anti-Muslim and responsible for their deaths during the violent riots in Gujarat in 2002 (never mind the little fact that the Supreme Court of India happens to disagree with them) is just disgusting. Wonder why these pseudo-secular pseudo-liberals do not write equally ferocious articles (with equal frequency) on the supervisory role played by Rajiv Gandhi during the anti-Sikh genocide in Delhi 1984?

      Also read Rati Parker’s brilliant reply to Madhu’s response here: i.e. bit (dot) ly (slash) LQajPs

    • Roark

      Sorry, for being late in my reply…But I just read dis today…An interesting conversation among fellas. I will like to make my points on the matter. To conclude that media is biased on the matter can never be proved. Just because we don’t have a concrete evidence. I agree that the 2002 riots have been discussed more in the media then 1984…One of the prime reason, which no one should disagree upon is the 24×7 media which was not prevalent in those times…But that cant be the reason for forgiving Rajeev Gandhi for his statement. The convicts definitely need to be punished. But, is this the only reason for Narendra Modi being declared a murderer and Congress escaping the brunt of the media ??… I beg to differ… The reasons are

      1) On the face of it, the riots of 1984 were communal as were those of 2002 but the sentiments were completely different. The sentiments in 1984 seem to be against the Sikhs , but they were actually against the anti- national elements. The terrorist activity from the Golden Temple was enough to instigate a Hindu and murder of Mrs.Gandhi added fuel to it…(Although, it can never be justified). On the other hand, there was nothing nationalistic in riots of 2002. They were completely communal.
      2)After reading the above point, no one will agree. I will explain it further. NaMo is unaccepted not only by the muslims of India but also by the Hindus. Yes, we only see the comments on social media but we always neglect the poll results…. How I reached to this conclusion and why?
      This is a fact in our country that both Hindus and Muslims are being used as vote bank politics. But again there is a difference. Congress use minorities for votes but they don’t use them “against” the Hindus. They sympathise with them, befool them and garner votes (which you all term as being Pseudo- Secular). The intentions are just of personal gains. The biggest proof is appointment of Manmohan Singh as Prime Minister despite being a Sikh. But the case against BJP is that, they try to use Hindus against Muslims. The intentions are not just of benefits but to prove there supremacy….. (Can you imagine a muslim prime- minister from BJP…???)….But they have been unsuccessful…..
      Reason 1- Hindus are too divided among themselves. So the possibility that all Hindus will turn vote bank for a particular party are very rare. But there is another viewpoint to it. Hindus are forced to behave “anti Muslim” by BJP, unlikely in the case of Muslims by the congress (as mentioned above). And Hindus don’t like it. I will come to the reasons later. But first let me prove it. If Hindus would have loved to fight aginst Muslims, than after 1992 demolition, BJP would have won hands down (Mind you, AB made a coalition of 24 allies…!!!)….Further, it would have won in 2004, when Congress had very grim, almost negligible chance of winning…..and post poll surveys also suggested the reasons for loss was 2002 riots…..But this, didn’t happen for Congress after 1984…It won with a thumping majority in 1985… So in a way you can say that Rajeev was forgiven, but BJP was not. And if NaMo can’t win 2014, I would say even he is not.
      But the question arises, the reasons for such emotions by Hindus…The reasons are very simple…The Hindus are more literate and rational in their though process than those of Muslims. They are not been brain washed in Madarsas and can analyse the situation rationally. They don’ t want an imposed supremacy of Hindus…Just because we are the majority…They want a supremacy of the country…and that too along with peace…
      Babri demolition, may have affected a group of Hindus in UP and surrounding areas, but in the other part of the country, every Hindu thought it logically…What difference would it have created if, it would not have been demolished?. We have several temples in our country, and no hindu could ever visit all of the in his whole lifetime….So the answer is…NOTHING…You may argue that sentiments were attached…Then, I would say..You are just behaving like Muslims as they behaved illogically in Salman Rushdie’s case…A resurrection of a temple won’t create a big difference….We have many bigger temples in India…..But as Advani mentioned after 1992, “Had there been no Mandal, there would have been no Kamandal”…It was just to polarise the upper class Hindu votes.
      Second, a Hindu don’t want to fight…and never on the name of religion…. There are again reasons for it..Majority of Hindus are brought up in a very non- violent environment….And, even in our culture we have always tried to develop non violence…On the other hand, its not the same for Muslims….An example…”In most of the temples around the country…the system of sacrificing animals have been abolished (barring exceptions)…but a Muslim child is taught to kill on every Id (They may call it anything, but for me its stupidity)….This was also known to Gandhi, that the strength of Hindus doesn’t lie in Violence (which Jinnah never knew)….And, that is why to unite the nation…he never resorted to violence…As they say …”Winners focus on their strengths…Loosers on their weaknesses”…And,I can prove it further…
      Even if we go by our history, than Hindus have been divide into four classes….But only Kshatriyas have actually faced defeat to Muslims…when Babur invaded India and Mughals ruled…Its difficult to find a ruler like Akbar.(Although, he was too rational)…But, there had been no Chanakya and no Birbal till date…Even in Business …You need guts to be a Dhirubhai Ambani…Also Pandavas won, because they had a clever Krishna by there side…So our strength and power is actually knowledge and intellect….We won three wars against Pakistan not because we are physically strong…Because we are strategically and technologically well equipped….In today’s world…dynamics have changed completely…To be powerful, you need economy, technolgy and intellect…That is the reason USA rules….They don’t need army to fight…Technology is more than enough…And, a Hindu knows that perfectly…He has Pakistan and Bangladesh as examples…He will never encourage violence….
      So, whenever he feels that he is being used “against” muslims…he revolts..if not by words…by actions (by voting)….He don’t want to be violent and illogical like majority of the Muslims…To keep his religion before nation…He still feels proud in singing National Anthem…than a religious ritual…And, he knows his strength…so he is not afraid of any religion affecting it…And even a well read Muslim knows….Where does truth stands..?
      So its not about the congress or the media…The muslims don’t support Modi for obvious reasons…But the fact is even Modi has not been forgiven by the well read Hindus….they don’t want a Hindu to behave violently like a Muslim…If a boxer is fighting against a Taekwando expert…he will always want him to stop using his kicks, and begin using punches…And minute the latter do so…Half of the battle is already won by the boxer…!!!
      So, its important for every violent Hindu to focus on his strength of non- violence…Its easy to hurl abuses and slap someone but it needs strength to develop yourself mentally and be powerful….Be shrewd and clever like Krishna…Don’t behave like Dushasanas…!!!

      • Chanakya

        You are a confused soul. First you fix your school level history Knowledge and find out who was Ibrahim Lodi. Muslims entered 200 years before Babur came.

      • Ajai Paul Singh

        You right we modern hindu and Americans is literate enough to focus on growth and technology, then why are they always so vulnerable to threats posed by militant groups. I will tell you why because it is our biggest mistake that we think we are intelligent and can win by technology. Muslims have a strategy to grow in a country and then take over the country by imposing laws and killing the minorities. At the moment they are minority in India so they are demanding, once they will be in majority they demand they will impose like what they did in Kashmir and other Muslim prone areas in India and other parts of the world. I dont have any problem against them being a human but the way they treat others is just undeniable and unjustifiable, so requesting please promote secularism but not on the grounds of innocent people being killed.

  • i haven’t read any of side with on mind mode ,but seen madhu mam work speaks ,read both just as crap i read ,

    read again didn’t take remark on MK GANDHI by madhu ,it will take lot more understanding of then India ,as rati raised Q on biased we see now on MSM ETC ,its because we still don’t have mature media , so we need people like madhu , or say sane voices madhu ans was directed towards riots etc or divide as i call 12-20 % are musalman in India ,as per our current constitution & our promise to minority they will be protected by majority & state ,then MK GANDHI proposed let them make govt but single voting , no separate as demand of then league , he was foresighted to see current state we going though ,
    if current MSM is direcly under a musalman wont he/she will we more responsible towards the non- musalman ? today there is ok i Hindu let be fair to others syndrome , didn’t MJ akabar much more fair to all ? this thought of i am Hindu let be fair to all is ———– , funny !

    must say admire if anyone in so called MSM think for moment , hate/love modi is fine ( so no reporting etc ) hate & love are strong feeling , but hate Gujarat boss one is going to far !!

    if a journo have prejudices he/she must one report on that , or atleast declare that ,

    i don’t like this disqus bad privacy record

  • Suhas

    Don Draper from the TV series Mad Men has a famous quote: if
    you don’t like what is being said, change the conversation. The mainstream
    media is adept at this, and it is disappointing to see a few instances of it in
    this article/letter too.

    A large part of this article is devoted to creating strawman
    arguments, for instance this: “My question is: do we have to kill Muslims and
    make them fear us to gain our Hindu identity?”

    To be fair, it has been suggested by a few that that this is
    exactly what needs to be done. But these few are the fringe lunatics that exist
    in every political spectrum, and even Modi would hesitate to rub shoulders with

    One assertion in the article is that the Indian media has a liberal
    bias. Well, it’s simply not true. There is one party (actually, there are
    several) in this country that opposes the UCC, that upholds the right of Muslim
    clerics to deny rights to their women, that bans books and movies that
    displease a religion. This party has also been trying to greatly raise the
    level of censorship in recent times. That this party is portrayed by the media as
    secular, and not termed illiberal or fascist (epithets reserved for the
    opponent of this party) shows us that most media personnel would not know “liberal”
    if it danced naked in front of them. A truly liberal media would be outraged at
    this govt’s numerous assaults on secularism, freedom of speech and common

    The media frequently portrays the Modi vs Gandhi fight as
    communal vs secular, illiberal vs liberal, when it is actually communal vs
    communal, illiberal vs illiberal. For some reason, the media is quick to use
    Holocaust references while talking about Modi (Hitler, Final Solution etc) but
    none of these are used for the sainted Rajiv Gandhi and the party that kept
    giving tickets to Jagdish Tytler till 2009.

    This dissonance between reality and media pronouncements,
    this willful denial and suppression of obvious facts, is one reason the media
    has so many who hate it. The disagreement of people who chafe against this does
    not find an outlet in mainstream media (because you’re a fascist if you say it)
    and it comes out in the form of angry tweets and blogs, often with dirty
    language. Right-wingers are normally less articulate than lefties, worldwide.

    Another strawman in the article: “But, I want all that
    without the threat of violence and ethnic division”

    While this is a common argument against Modi, nowhere has it
    been shown that his model of development requires the threat of violence and
    ethnic division. There is nothing to suggest that unleashing riots is a
    prerequisite for Modi to replicate his developmental performance at the center.
    How does the argument have any significance if it is not a prerequisite?

  • It is undoubtedly clear that no brand of politicians can be absolved of the responsibility of selling India for a pittance and pitting us against each other.The crux of the matter is that while we wear our religions on our sleeves , we forget what its essence truly is! Broad-mindedness and tolerance , is the core theme and is sorely required for our country to make it across. Going by the agitated attitudes that one sees around , I think India’s opponents don’t need much ammo to set us aflame internally and gore each other to death. If the larger section of responders to your piece , Madhu Ji, think that hate is what they need the most , Let them forget Love and follow their own calling. Narrow minded wolves have nothing to lose , except their lives to one another.
    Bhavishya Puran talks of the vicious times of Kaliyuga , the time is here , NOW!

  • vikram

    Dear Madhu,
    I was a fan of you after you grilled Devil’s advocate. I thought you were different from the usual English Media baffoons. Thanks for the breaking the illusion-you are no different.

    • Vikram Madhu is very good journalist but she don’t want to be another Swapan Das Gupta. Every time poor Swapan Das Gupta appear in any chat show he is introduced as BJP sympathizer. You even see some times criticizing BJP for their wrong philosophy but then also. But have you ever seen the media to do same with Vinod Sharma or Kumar Ketkar.

  • Dinipc

    What? Modi created this cycle of violence? No Ma’am, this nonsensical, idealistic sermonizing doesn’t get us anywhere. Narendra Modi works within the confines and the framework of the present political climate – which has been desecrated by the pandering of Muslims and Christians to levels of utter foolishness. We have created an entire community of an enemy within!! Congress politics of opportunism and greed has ruined the communal fabric of this country. Don’t blame Narendra Modi for just *trying* to set things right, because he cannot do that overnight. It will take decades of hard and honest work to bring India out of the mess that Congress has put us in. Just because you profess to be politically-neutral doesn’t mean you equally berate / praise all political parties. A fact is that everything that is wrong in this country is Congress-created, and no amount of bullshitting will change that!

  • Abhinav

    Madhu Trehan, you seem to be having credible proof which can prove that Narendra Modi is responsible since you apparently know of bureaucrats in his administration who enjoyed killing Muslims. This is serious. You must present it before the courts or the Supreme Court. If you can fix Modi, you’ll most probably be given the Padma Shri or the Padma Vibhushan by UPA 3 and who knows? You might even be the Media Advisor to Prime Minister Rahul Gandhi.

    If you have evidence and you’re hiding it, then YOU also deserve to be prosecuted under relevant sections of the IPC for eclipsing prosecutable evidence which might have sent the Mass Murderer of India’s most peaceful, productive and respectable minority community, to jail or may be even hanged (preferably in public, in Azamgarh), to a massive orgasm of media persons like you.

    If you don’t have evidence, you must learn to shut the F up.

  • Smita

    The tweeter, Rati, is right.

    Madhu Trehan, midway through her reply, admits that the press ignored the Sabarmati burning, and concentrated exlusively on the riots that followed. What stopped Ms Trehan from filling the gap she so clearly saw? Newslaundry could have carried some honest journalistic piece as a tenth anniversary special on the Sabarmati burning, to complement Rajdeep Sardesai’s completely one-sided and Bollywood style melodramatic reporting!

    She goes on to admit that the second part of Modi’s famous quote was conveniently omitted by quoters, and that he should be given the benefit of doubt, in the light of the SIT findings. But then she “thinks” Modi is anti-muslim, and hence, inspite of the fact that he is an efficient and visionary leader, he should not be given a decision making role in our system.

    So, because Madhu Trehan and her “unbiased and fair” tribe THINK/SUSPECT that Modi may be non secular because there was ONE riot barely a month after he assumed power for the first time as CM ( of course, that he may have been unfamiliar with the workings of government at the time is not a concession he may deserve), in which, incidentally, 300-400 HINDUS also died – Ms Trehan is not aware of official stats, or does she choose to ignore them and spread the misinformation that it was a one-sided pogram? — Anyway, it is what our mediapersons THINK that will decide who is worthy of leading the country and who is not?

    All that emotional content is just a lot of fog to mask the truth that our media persons are prejudiced, but won’t admit it.
    Biased and blind as our media is, it does shape our opinions. They must take utmost care to not present facts wrongly, or incompletely.

  • Col (Retd) deepak Raina

    The entire credit goes to Rati Parker for riling Madhu Trehan in to a detailed and some what defensive reply to the charge of mediocrity in the form of ‘baba log’ of media guys ruling the roost in media. Her response is no different from the one which comes from kids of film barons or politicians in India when charged with enjoying similar privileges.

    Regarding Modi bashing by the media I think what comes out implicitly from Madhu Trehans philosophy is that guilt of a person is to be established not in a Court of law but the gut feeling of a person and Madhu,s gut has decided that he is guilty. Let us therefore disband all courts and initiate a mechanism of examining intestines of media anchors to decide the fate of all accused person. However she is at least candid enough to admit that there was hardly any coverage of Sabarmati Express victims by the media which could have restored some balance in the projection of victim hood of only one party. But then, there is nothing new in media feeling the pain of only one section of the society, remember the negligible coverage to the genocide of kashmiri pandits in the valley. Perhaps the media maharajas / maharanis feel that they can propagate their secular credentials and impartiality only by siding with the minorities the rest of the guys can take a long long walk.

    By and large people are no longer susceptible to the machinations of the media, particularly post Radia tapes the sanctity of media and its portrayal of a virgin white image has taken a toss. Looking at the news anchor day after day one knows exactly the kind of long winded questions they are going to ask, their interruptions galore, self righteous indignation to show their political correctness, non sensical aggressiveness for no apparent cause (all of them seem to be now suffering from this ailment except when quizzing a VIP their aggressiveness just fizzles out), and benevolence to a chosen few – (case in point is NDTVs attitude towards Mani Shankar, the guy just rambles on and on with out any one stopping him, a privilege not granted to lesser mortals). The less said about omnipresent participants like Vinod Sharma the better it is, the guy knows only how to create a mountain of goodness for Congress and bashes the BJP with what ever stick he can find. I wonder when is the congress going to reward him with a Rajya Sabha seat and put him and all of us out of our miseries.

  • krawat

    What a crap article.. It sounds as if Madhu has stood from the ashes… as if a child who was deprived of everything made it on her own.. born with a silver spoon, It is as if someone is complaining that we were so poor that we had just one maruti car when I was a child.. self made people are different … they are like Lalbahadur shastri, atal bihari vajpayee, anna hazare & ramdev.. who fought against the odds.. you cannot know that.. you are ill-qualified

  • Bhaskar

    Madhu COME ON .. I never thought you could write such an unbalanced blog.

  • Shashi

    Among all this hullaballoo the question that is screaming to be answered is received a quiet burial. What about the accountability of the media towards the general public in laying the facts of matter as they stand without bias or attempts to peddle half truths. Why does the mainstream media not subject itself to scrutiny from within and bring out all the lies and deceit ? The media’s role is not to sit in judgement which unfortunately it is doing today,but it is to present an unbiased case built out of verifiable facts. After having done so, leave the decision to the general public. While presenting the ugly face of Modi and his alleged complicity in Gujarat “pogrom”, why is there no worthwhile attempt made to expose the falsehoods of Teesta Setalvad and also mention the development In Gujarat under Modi’s rule. This is what agonizes the “angry tweeter”. Let the people decide for themselves, how seriously they weigh Modi’s failings in the light of his successes in bringing a clean and efficient administration to Gujarat. In Gandhiji’s country are we not expected to know the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Why is anybody who is critical of the partisan journalism being dished out on news channels branded as Muslim-haiter and communal? Is is too much to ask of the media to be truthful and unbiased in its reporting.

  • Konark Bisht

    Good article.Her opinion is valuable.

  • Konark Bisht

    Is cheering for other team not your home country is anti national by constitution ? I don’t think it is important but what is important is the loyalty toward the constituion.

  • oompha loompha

    Rati, it is no use arguing with a paanchvi fail champu. Sooner you understand it, better off you’ll be.

  • Come to state is in the verge of a riot..A communal party named muslim league is ruling the state..Media call muslim league secular but BJP communal..

  • Peculiarblend

    Smart. Good times. Thank you ladies

  • Pankaj Kumar

    I am commenting very late because I came to know about this website only couple of days ago and I am hooked to this website. Most of the articles here are of high quality and I appreciate News Laundry for putting up such a nice work.
    Overall I liked Ms Trehan’s point of view. She has some vision of India and I really appreciate about her expectations from society (regarding comment about road rage etc). I am not sure if journalists are allowed to have personal bias or not. But it is unfair to abuse (abuse is different from criticism) somebody if he/she doesn’t like Mr. Modi or anybody for whatever reason.
    At the same time I can see there is definite bias in media and somehow feel that anger against media is justified although it is not always civil. I think this is one of the reason, Mr. S Vardarajan has admitted that media didn’t cover the 1984 riots very well (14 March 2012 interview of S Vardarajan with Ms Trehan on News Laundry). Even after his admission, the Assam riots were not that extensively covered by MSM. I know comparing one riot with other is unfair, but at the same time I feel media has been unfair as well.
    I also like the way Mr. Modi has been scrutinised. Anybody who is expected to take the PM office should be debated well enough. The last thing this country would need a spineless PM like Manmohan Singh (or extremely incompetent as Rajiv and Indira Gandhi) who became PM only because of his connections and his credibility as expected PM wasn’t debated before. After all the debate and considering Mr Modi’s last 11 years of performance as an administrator I think he would be a very able PM and that would be one of best thing for this country.

    Also what I hate most about media is not its biased coverage of some individuals. There is no importance given to very serious issues such as crime against woman (dowry, rape, eve teasing etc), pathetic education system, extreme poverty. These things are just 2 minute news piece and then it begins its Modi bashing.

  • Ajai Paul

    Dear Madhu,

    I totally agree with your viewpoint that you want India to grow on the basis of development but who would teach muslims this. Once they will be in majority there will be no us left to fight. I am ready to be a Zero Religion man but practically at this moment it is not possible so I would vote for Narendra Modi for humanities sake. In your heart you would agree with me, you might not agree with me in writing.

  • Ajai Paul Singh

    I support Uniform Civil Code for all religion in India.

  • Ajai Paul Singh

    I would vote for Mr. Modi because he far better than Rahul Gandhi. He comes in media and faces allegation. He has shown progress in Gujarat. Lets just give him a chance

  • blue_sky88

    i am not a journalist so i cannt write another long article to reply Madhu.
    First of all i want to congratulate you for your frank n unbiased views on most of the burning topics. Secondly i wonder since 2002 why no journalist or politician talks about the people of Gujrat(Both Hindus n mulsims)?
    People who started the riots?Why muslims are not blamed for starting the riots and burning the women n childs??
    Answer i guess is people who talk about these points are labbeled as nonsecular n undemocratic but this is far from truth. We should openly critics those muslims who set the train in fire not because they are MUSLIMS but because they burned alive womens n childs.

  • Rahul Singh

    Madhu maam,

    Despite being a modi fan, I liked your reply to the “Angry Tweeter”..While reading I could imagine your voice with which you would have spoken. It really sounded like an independent voice. Despite all the criticism of Narendra Modi, I loved reading it. I wish every person in India could be as rational as you are. Does not matter one is modi supporter or against him but they need to have an analytical view. In india, people support person first and then justify their actions. like “Modi ne kiya hai to thik hi kiya hoga or Kejriwal ne kiya hai to thik hi hoga and Rahul Gandhi ne kiya hai to bekar hi hoga” attitude. We must see persons action independent of the image we have in our mind for that person. People here are like herds, they simply don’t know why they are supporting Namo or Arving Kejriwal or Rahul Gandhi, they are just supporting.

    Thank you for such a nice read. It was really enlightening. I am a bigger fan of yours now.

    Respect to you, love you.. 🙂