Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Yogi versus Modi

There is one upmanship between Yogi Adityanath and Narendra Modi.
When Yogi became CM and shut abattoirs, word spread that it was Modi’s idea. Yogi did not contradict that.
Change of name is an easy way to get publicity. BJP members wanted Mughalsarai Junction to be changed to Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhaya Junction on 5/8/2018. That happened along with change of city name to Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhaya Nagar.
Yogi announced change of name of Allahabad to Prayagraj. It was also a demand of BJP members. That generated publicity for a few days.
Modi unveiled Statue of Unity, statue of Vallabhbhai Patel, on his birth anniversary on 31/10/2018. It is world’s tallest statue at 182 metres/597.11 feet. It is almost double the size of Statue of Liberty which is 93 metres tall. In China there is a Buddha statue 153 metres tall. The height of statues includes that of pedestals.
Soon there was talk of 202 metres tall Statue of Ram in Ayodhya. On 6/11/2018 Yogi announced change of name of Faizabad district to Ayodhya district. Faizabad city retains its name. He also announced building an airport named after Ram and a medical college named after Dashrath. The programme at Ayodhya had 3,00,000 lamps, double of 1,50,000 lamps at Modi’s programme at Varanasi. Yogi said he visited Ayodhya six times in one and a half year since he became CM. No UP CM has done that. It seems Yogi was also hinting at Modi who had not visited Ayodhya in recent years.
Some months back there was an advertisement which had photos of Yogi as CM and Nitin Gadkari as Surface Transport Minister. There was no photo of Modi. There was speculation about that.
Yogi has backing of RSS. He did not contest Legislative Assembly elections. He was an MP. RSS wanted him as CM. He became an MLC. BJP lost Gorakhpur held by Yogi in Lok Sabha by-election.
Supreme Court has not heard Ayodhya Dispute case and it may hear in January. There is pressure on Modi to bring an ordinance to facilitate building of Ram temple in Ayodhya. Some are offended that Supreme Court said Ayodhya Dispute is not a priority for us. They say it is an insult of all Hindus.
Yogi sees himself as a rival to Modi. RSS wants Ram Mandir. Some members are impatient. They talk of a situation like that of 1992. Yogi will figure prominently regarding Ayodhya in coming days. More publicity for Yogi means less publicity for Modi. Yogi will fancy replacing Modi as PM.

Civil War in CBI

CBI’s No. 1 Director Alok Verma and CBI’s No. 2 Special Director Rakesh Asthana have accused each other of corruption and the fight is out in the open. Both were appointed by Narendra Modi.
Rakesh Asthana on 24/8/2018 had sent a note to Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha with a dozen or so complaints against Alok Verma and Additional Director A. K. Sharma. The note was also sent to CVC. Soon there began an investigation in Rakesh Asthana’s role in around half a dozen cases. On 15/10/2018 CBI registered an FIR against Rakesh Asthana and others in a bribery case. CBI serarched DSP Devender Kumar’s office on 19/10/2018 and on 22/10/2018 it arrested him.
The FIR mentions RAW Special Director Samant Kumar Goel but not as an accused.
Devender Kumar is accused of fabricating a statement of Sana Sathish Babu which mentions TDP MP C. M. Ramesh assuring Sana he will talk to CBI Director and some days later saying he met CBI Director regarding Sana’s case, investigation is closed and he will not be called again.
C. M. Ramesh said he had not met even a constable of CBI in his entire life and even the CBI has found the statement fabricated.
On 19/10/2018 Rakesh Asthana wrote to CVC mentioning that the bribe was paid to Alok Verma to settle the case in favour of Sana.
The feud between Alok Verma and Rakesh Asthana begins in October 2017 if not before that. Alok Verma opposed Rakesh Asthana’s promotion as Special Director. CVC and Supreme Court rejected his objection. Thereafter Alok Verma took away some important cases Rakesh Asthana handled and gave them to A. K. Sharma.
CBI has been known for corruption and cover-ups. Many cases which state police handled were given to CBI and the guilty were not charged. In stamp paper case the amount got reduced from 37,000 crore rupees to 3,000 crore rupees. In cases against Mayawati and Mulayam Singh Yadav, CBI went slow when Congress needed their support. In one case murder became suicide.
These are interesting times. CBI is rotten. Many times it acts together with ED and other agencies. Some years back Supreme Court referred to CBI as cages parrot. That time Ranjit Sinha was the Director. This time CBI is in self-destructive mode. Most people had lost faith in CBI long back. This infighting confirms that.

Me Too India

October 2018 has seen many accusations of rape and sexual harassment against many men. Tanushree Dutta accused Nana Patekar of sexual harassment. He sent her legal notice for defamation. Vinta Nanda accused Alok Nath of rape. He sent her legal notice for defamation. Sandhya Mridul and Deepika Amin accused Alok Nath of sexual harassment.
Vikas Bahl sent legal notices to Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane for siding with an accuser of sexual harassment. He called them opportunists.
Simran Suri, Saloni Chopra, Rachel White and Amrita Puri accused Sajid Khan of misbehaviour. Sajid Khan is out of Housefull 4 as director and Nana Patekar is out of Housefull 4 as actor.
Harnidh Kaur accused BCCI CEO Rahul Johri of sexual assault of a female author when he was Executive Vice President and General Manager (South Asia) for Discovery Network Asia Pacific. BCCI Committee of Administrators asked Rahul Johri not to attend ICC meeting in Singapore from 16 to 19 October.
Subhash Ghai has an anonymous accusation of rape against him made public by Mahima Kukreja. He denied the allegation. TV actress Kate Sharma has filed a police complaint against him for molestation.
Vinod Dua had accusation of sexual harassment against him by Nishtha Jain. He denied the allegation. His daughter Mallika Dua said she supports Me Too but stands with her father.
Rajat Kapoor had three anonymous accusations against him posted by Sandhya Menon on Twitter. He apologised. His film Kadakh was dropped from MAMI festival.
Natashja Rathore, Mandakini Gahlot, Ishita Yadav, and Ira Trivedi accused Suhel Seth of sexual harassment of themselves and Anisha Sharma accused him of sexual harassment of a 17-year old girl.
Ira Trivedi accused Chetan Bhagat of sexual harassment. Chetan Bhagat posted a screenshot of e-mail sent by Ira Trivedi and said claim of him sexually harassing was false. The last line of e-mail was “Miss u kiss u.” Chetan Bhagat asked “So who wanted to kiss whom?”
Abhijeet Bhattacharya, Anu Malik, Kailash Kher, Luv Ranjan, and Varun Grover are among those accused of sexual harassment.

Geetanjali Arora had no empathy or sympathy for women who said they suffered sexual harassment many years back. It was a case of doing favours to each other. She does not me too stories. She gave a tight slap to anyone who tried to molest her then and there. Strong women don’t have sob stories.

Anyone can accuse anyone of rape or sexual harassment. Victims of sex crimes should file police complaints. Allegation on Twitter or Facebook should not be a ground for dismissal or resignation.

Mobashar Jawed Akbar was abroad when accusations began against him. He was in Nigeria. He went to Equatorial Guinea and returned to India on 14/10/2018. Women journalists have accused of him of harassment many years back when he was an editor. He denied the allegations, hinted at political conspiracy, and threatened legal action.
Some political parties demanded resignation or sacking of M. J. Akbar as Minister of State for External Affairs. Most were silent. BJP leaders know if M. J. Akbar is asked to quit other ministers can also be accused of sex crimes and they will have to quit. Narendra Modi, Arun Jaitley, Rajnath Singh and others can be targets.
Sometimes there is duplicity and hypocrisy in dealing with accusations. Those who constantly say a woman should be believed no matter what suddenly change their tune when their favourite man is accused. Then they say both sides should be heard.

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