Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Category: India

Target Taj Mahal

There are some BJP members who want to erase all signs of Muslim Rule including Taj Mahal. For them it is not a symbol of love. One member referred to Taj Mahal as a blot on Indian culture. The talk caused outrage. UP CM defused the situation by saying Taj Mahal was built by the sweat and blood of Indian labourers.
UP tourism booklet mentions 20 sites and Taj Mahal is not one of them. The justification for that is Taj Mahal is famous and other sites need publicity. That is a good argument. People from all over the world come to see Taj Mahal. It does not need publicity.
The destruction of Bamiyan Buddhas caused worldwide outrage against the Taliban. For many outside India, Taj Mahal is the symbol of India. Taj Mahal is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many tourists come to India to see only Taj Mahal. Shah Jahan was not an invader. He was born in India. He did not imprison his father. His son imprisoned him. He was a ruler, not a traitor. He is not known to persecute Hindus or demolish mosques.
Babri Mosque demolition caused riots all over India and protests outside India. There were plans to demolish Kashi and Mathura mosques. Taj Mahal as a target is a new development.
There is an agenda. It goes beyond Taj Mahal. If they succeed Ahmedabad, Akbarabad, Allahabad, Aurangabad, Faridabad, Feroz Shah Kotla, Ferozepur, Ghaziabad, Khuldabad, Hoshangabad, Hyderabad, Murshidabad, Muzaffarnagar, Muzaffarpur, Nizamuddin, Osmanabad, Sahibabad, Secundarabad, Tughlaqabad, Akbar Road, Babur Road, Humayun Road, Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, will have change of names. Urdu will be banned. Biriyani will be banned. Fatehpur Sikri, Red Fort, Qutub Minar and Char Minar will disappear.
Muslims are around 15% of population. There will be resistance by Muslims and others to change of names and destruction of monuments. There was not much opposition to change of name from Aurangzeb Road to A. P. J. Abdul Kalam Road. There was resistance to change of name from Akbar Road to Maharana Pratap Singh Road and Akbar Road remained. People can continue to use old names. Names like Baroda, Bombay, Calcutta, Calicut, Connaught Place, Crawford Market, Lamington Road, Princess Street, Warden Road, Salt Lake Stadium continue to be used.

One Election for India

On 4/10/2017 Election Commissioner O. P. Rawat told reporters Election Commission is ready to hold simultaneous Lok Sabha and Legislative Assembly polls from September 2018 onwards. The government wanted to know about the possibility of holding simultaneous polls and the Election Commission has replied to the government.

It is good to have simultaneous polls for Lok Sabha, Legislative Assemblies and local bodies. Modi government wants to hold simultaneous Lok Sabha and Legislative Assembly polls but local body polls also should be held on the same day. One polling booth is enough for casting votes for different polls.

Holding simultaneous polls has problems in a parliamentary democracy. India should go for a new Constitution and presidential democracy. Simultaneous polls were the norm in India till 1967. After that the cycle got disrupted.

Simultaneous polls has to be a process spread over five years beginning in 2019. Lok Sabha and Andhra Pradesh and Telangana polls are due that year. Other Legislative Assemblies should be allowed to complete their five year terms and Legislative Assemblies elected after that should have their terms expire in 2024. Similar should be the process for local bodies. From 2024 India will have simultaneous polls for Lok Sabha, Legislative Assemblies and local bodies. Lok Sabha should elect President who will have executive powers and Vice President. Ministers should be appointed by President after approval by Lok Sabha. Legislative Assemblies should elect Governors who will have executive powers and Lieutenant Governor. Ministers should be appointed by Governors after approval by Legislative Assemblies. Ministers are individually responsible to President or Governor. They continue to hold power in case of death or resignation of President or Governor. There need not be Prime Minister or Chief Minister.

Elections to Lok Sabha, Legislative Assemblies, and local bodies shall be held every fifth year from 2024 onwards on 26 April, or on 27 April if 26 April is Sunday. Vote counting should be next day at 8 a.m. New Lok Sabha, Legislative Assemblies, and local bodies will begin their terms on 1 June.

Rogue Nation

There is fake news, paid news, and false propaganda.
One channel has referred to North Korea as a rogue nation and India should be concerned about it. North Korea can hit India with missiles. The news report sounded American propaganda.
North Korea is not a threat to India. North Korea is not India’s enemy. India has no border dispute with North Korea. India should be concerned about China and Pakistan. They occupy Indian territory. North Korean missiles will have to fly over China to come to India. That will be violation of China’s sovereignty. China is stronger than North Korea.
North Korea has developed missiles and nuclear weapons for its defence. It knows what happened to Iraq and Libya. Syria would have gone the same way. Russia prevented it.
Libyan mess has resulted in immigrant crisis in Italy. Greece has immigrants from Syria and other countries. Immigrants who came as refugees have committed rapes and other crimes in Austria, Germany, Sweden and other countries.
It was foolish on the part of Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan to give up their nuclear weapons when they split from USSR. Iran should not have stopped its nuclear programme. India should not have gone along with sanctions against Iran. Nuclear Iran would have been a threat to Pakistan.
USA abets, arms, sponsors and trains terrorists. It calls them freedom fighters. Al Qaeda, Taliban, Al Nusra, Mujahuddeen and other groups were supported by USA.
It is wrong for India to condemn North Korea for nuclear weapons. USA had condemned India and imposed sanctions for nuclear tests in 1998.
USA, UK, France and Norway are rogue nations which helped Israel become a nuclear power. Israel supports terrorists in Syria. Israel is a rogue nation.
USA wants to sell arms to Japan and South Korea. American military industry wants to profit from war.
USA is not concerned about democracy. USA has toppled many democracies. There is no democracy in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. Saudi Arabia buys arms from USA and USA is happy about it. Saudi Arabia kills civilians in Yemen and USA is silent about it. No talk of Saudi Arabia as a rogue nation.
Regime change in the name of removing a dictator has led to instability in Iraq and Libya.
India should resist American domination. India should continue to do business with North Korea. India should remember how USA treated Devyani Khobragade. India has to act alone against Pakistan and China.

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