Silencing the Crowd | Indian express

They first came for an advertisement for Tanishq – and the mighty Tata Empire did not resist a community campaign against the image of an interfaith home. A year later, the crowd formed their outrage over Fabindia, for the publicity of a festive collection she called Jashn-e-Riwaaz. The public display of sectarianism was endorsed by Bengaluru BJP MP Tejasvi Surya, who accused the clothing brand of “Abrahamizing” the Hindu festival of Diwali, and warned him of the “economic costs. “. Other self-proclaimed advocates of Hinduism have embarked on this ridiculous battle by closely reading the foreheads of the mannequins in the ad – and dismissing them for not wearing bindis. Instead of ignoring this absurd campaign, Fabindia withdrew the ad.

That Hinduism and Hindus must be defended against a phrase in Urdu – a language born in the heart of northern India, one of the 22 languages ​​listed in the Constitution, spoken and written by freedom fighters and poets, lovers and lyricists, a thread interwoven in the DNA of this diverse country – is a laughable proposition. But he brings the threat together in the hands of an indignant crowd who tweet first, think later. It becomes dangerous when hatred and bigotry are so easily amplified by social media – and when the right to take offense is allowed by politicians who, it seems, only wish to speak the language of polarization and the division. And so, a crowd of trolls, determined to burn down the shared ritual and common ground of diversity, transform into a self-defense force.

Of course, such intolerance feeds on the complicity of politicians like Surya and the discouraging lack of confidence in the state to defend the citizen or the businessman. But he is also emboldened by the silence of the biggest names in India Inc, who have enormous means to defend themselves. Their reluctance will not earn them a reprieve – it will not protect the bottom line or prevent a campaign of slander, like the recent tarring of Infosys as “anti-national” or the labeling of Fabindia as an example of ” Make in ”native. India “like any business, as the“ anti-Hindus ”reveal. It is time for Indian businesses as a whole, not just individual businesses, to take a close look at the results of such a surrender. that the crowd will not stop at a single advertisement. By removing “Jashn-e-Riwaaz” – Urdu for a “festival of tradition” – or by removing an advertising campaign in the hope of silencing the crowd, this narrows the space for both freedom and enterprise, and sets the stage for another salvo from the tyrants of the new India.

October 16, 1981, forty years ago: Bhindranwale is free

After 26 days in detention for questioning in the murder case of Lala Jagat Narain, Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale was released in Ferozepur. He received a jubilant reception from his supporters and supporters. Sant Bhindranwale was released from custody at 2.30 pm Judicial magistrate GK Rai formally heard the advice of both parties and, in a tactfully drafted order, authorized the release. No deposit or bond was required. The absent leaders were Sant Harchand Singh Longowal, President Akali Dal (left), and Prakash Singh Badal, opposition leader in Punjab Vidhan Sabha.

Visas for Canada

Indian nationals who intend to visit Canada will now need to obtain a visa. However, there will be no change in the procedures for applying for immigrant status in Canada. The Canadian government’s decision was also announced in Ottawa by Employment and Immigration Minister Lloyd Axworthy. Axworthy visited New Delhi earlier this month and had extensive discussions with the Indian government following reports that large numbers of Sikhs have entered Canada seeking political asylum, alleging complaints persecutions for asking for Khalistan in India.

The grief of the PM

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi has expressed disapproval of the habit of Chief Ministers of Congress (I) and other party men visiting Delhi whenever she leaves or returns from a trip abroad. Congress (I) was embarrassed by an article in The Indian Express of October 10 noting that on the day of Mrs Gandhi’s return from the Commonwealth Conference in Melbourne, 10 of the 13 Chief Ministers of Congress (I) had come to Delhi to be part of the welcome party, and when the Prime Minister left, an almost equal number of them had come to greet her.

October 14, 1981, forty years ago: PM-Akali talks

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi will meet with the Akali delegation on October 16. Besides the Akalis, Ms. Gandhi will also meet with key Hindu leaders from the Punjab before she leaves for a 10-day overseas tour. The Prime Minister’s secretariat is busy organizing its meeting with Akali leaders. Ms Gandhi does not depend on the advice of Interior Minister Zail Singh or Punjab CM Darbara Singh. While Zail Singh was in favor of a dialogue with the Akalis, Darbara Singh was not very enthusiastic about it. Ms. Gandhi knows the views of these two leaders. She can therefore seek advice from Swaran Singh, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, to resolve the entanglement in the Punjab. It is possible that Hindu leaders will be invited either on October 16 or earlier. This is deemed necessary, especially after the assassination of Lala Jagat Narain, which had generated a lot of tension in the state.

Evasive zia

Pakistan does not appear to have decided yet what to do with the five hijackers who forced an Indian Airlines Boeing to land in Lahore two weeks ago. In an impromptu interview with reporters after a function in Rawalpindi, President Zia-ul Haq avoided responding directly to a question about Islamabad’s decision on India’s demand for the return of the hijackers. The decision would be made later, officially, said the general. Indian Ambassador Natwar Singh made a formal request for the return of the hijackers led by Gajendra Singh from Dal Khalsa within hours of their arrest in Lahore on September 30 by Pakistani commandos.

Credit for Ghana

India will provide Ghana with credit assistance of Rs 50 million according to one of the five agreements signed between the two countries to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the economic, commercial, scientific and cultural fields.

October 13, 1981, forty years ago: anti-graft campaign

Five organizations, including Citizens for Democracy and Lok Sevak Eangh, founded by Jayaprakash Narayan, decided at a meeting in New Delhi to launch a nationwide campaign against corruption. It was in commemoration of Jayaprakash Narayan’s birthday on Sunday. The meeting passed a resolution, forcing Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to remove AR Antulay from the poet of the chief minister of Maharashtra. Other organizations that also sponsored the anti-corruption movement were the People’s Union for Civil Liberties, the Delhi Voters’ Council and the Hindustan Andolan.

Visa problem

The government said it was not involved at this stage in the issue of China’s refusal to grant a visa to Arunachal Assembly Speaker TL Rajkumar. Rajkumar is a member of the delegation of Indian parliamentarians, which is due to leave for Beijing later this month to attend a conference on population control. Responding to questions, an official spokesperson said the government was aware, however, that the Chinese government had denied Rajkumar the visa. The delegation was invited to raise the issue with the United Nations which sponsored the conference. UN authorities were in contact with the Chinese government in this regard, the spokesperson said.

Purge in Egypt

Eighteen Egyptian officers with “fanatic religious leanings” were dismissed from the army following the assassination of Sadat by Muslim fundamentalists, official sources said. The sacking was the first measure reported by the government to purge the army of religious extremists. “Eighteen army officers have been assigned to civilian posts because of their fanatic religious leanings,” the statement released by official sources who would not be publicly identified said.

September 27, 1981, forty years ago: the Dhaka protests

The Indian government has dismissed reports from Dhaka that 18 Bangladeshi citizens were killed inside Bangladesh’s borders in an attack by Indian security personnel earlier this week. No Indian security personnel were involved in the reported incident, a spokesperson for the Union Foreign Ministry said. The spokesperson said there had been no request from the Bangladeshi government in response to local Indian officials’ request for a meeting to address the issue. He said around 5,000 people belonging to tribal communities had entered India from Bangladesh in the past few days. Meanwhile, the government of Bangladesh had lodged a strong protest with India alleging border violations by 500 criminals in the areas of Chittagong Hill Tract.

CM refuses the fees

Denying corruption charges against him, Bihar Chief Minister Jagannath Mishra launched a counteroffensive against Karpoori Thakur who he said was trying to “give authenticity to his fabricated lies based on his information on an imaginary report from the Ministry of the Interior “. In his lengthy reply, Mishra accused Thakur of earning more than 2 crore rupees from contracts awarded by the Bihar Electricity Board. Denying having played a role in increasing the price of alcohol from 75 paisa to 1.80 rupees per liter, the price was settled by the excise service after negotiations with the manufacturers. He also said Union Home Secretary Giani Zail Singh told him that no investigation had been opened into the charges against him.

Storm warning

The movement of ships to and from Calcutta Port and Haldia Port Complex and normal work in these wharf systems have been disrupted by severe cyclonic storms. A danger signal has been hoisted at Calcutta’s ports and the Haldia wharf complex to warn ships, fishing boats and trawlers of a severe cyclonic storm.

September 21, 1981, forty years ago: violence in the Punjab

Twelve people were killed and several others injured when police opened fire to disperse a mob of sword-armed Nihangs, who attacked security forces after Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale surrendered to police and was taken to Ludhiana. The crowd torched a police jeep, a truck, three makeshift police stations, a makeshift canteen and an unknown number of police beds and effects. A Punjab armed police jawan was reportedly killed when Nihang attacked him with a sword. The Bhindranwale had specifically called on his supporters to remain peaceful after his arrest.

Problems of Congress (I)

The Congressional High Command (I) is puzzled by the reluctance of many Karnataka leaders, including Chief Minister R Gundu Rao, to comply with his directive and step down from party positions. Although the AICC (I) formulated “one man, one policy” a few months ago and ordered all ministers to relinquish their party positions, many have refused to do so. Among the failing is the CM who continues to chair the Coorg (I) District Congress Committee.

Sivakasi explosion

The death toll in the Sivakasi explosion in Tamil Nadu on September 19 rose to 31 with the death of one of the two seriously injured admitted to hospital. RB Thaba, director general of explosives control, will be in Sivakasi to investigate the incident. Arunachalam, owner of the firecracker manufacturing unit in which the explosion took place, has been taken into custody.

Mansarovar pilgrims

The group of Indian pilgrims in Mansarovar and Kailash were warmly welcomed by Chinese authorities when they entered China. They were greeted by Chinese authorities at the Lipulekh Pass at a height of 17,800 feet.