Pakistan: (By Fatimah Hassan, Pakistan Press Foundation) Pakistan is one of the countries where the profession of journalism is dangerous because t
USA: The American Sikh Council (ASC) wants to congratulate the Farmer (Kisan) Union leaders, each and every farmer, farm worker, and every Indian who participated in the world’s largest Tractor Rally protesting and participating in India’s Republic Day parade on Tuesday January 26, 2021 to display their public dissent against the draconian Farm Laws which were unconstitutionally enacted by the Modi government.
Over two hundred thousand farm tractors with trolleys in tow, some of which were over 30-mile-long rolling protests on several highways, entered New Delhi in the early hours of January 26, 2021. Over a million unarmed peaceful protestors marched into Delhi on tractors and walked to show their defiance against the dictatorial and autocratic shenanigans of the Modi regime against its own people.
The residents of New Delhi showered the entering protestors with flower petals and jubilation like rock stars. This was a genuine display of affection for the brave farmers and all other protestors for holding their head high while suffering the cold elements for more than two months steadfastly.
The protestors did a remarkable job of keeping the discipline considering the organizers had to control over a million people with no help from the authorities. Along the route of the march not a single store was looted, there was no rioting, no women were molested, while the authorities tried every underhanded tactic to derail and malign the protestors with the help of the national media which has sold its conscience to the PM long ago.
Based on several news reports the Indian government had allowed the Tractor Rally to participate in this annual function on certain designated routes. Albeit their hypocrisy is unbelievable because the same highways were quietly riddled with massive barricades setup overnight to stop the rally. The well-organized march was challenged by the police and thousands of protesters were tear gassed, beaten up with batons and several peaceful protestors have been shot for no apparent reason.
The Police have acted worse than thugs. Multiple videos clearly show how the police in plainclothes infiltrated the protesters and had broken windows, punctured tractors tires, removed parts, siphoned off diesel, out of hundreds of tractors, simply to stop the protestors, even when the government had clearly allowed the protest rally to happen. Protestors apprehended over a dozen of the police thugs with their police ID cards. Nothing can be more disgraceful! This kind of highhanded behavior is to be expected from the world’s largest dictatorship. The reality is that a super corrupt and untrustworthy government which never keeps its promises, verbal or written is capable of doing anything ignoble.
Napoleons have come and gone but the country and its people should be given utmost priority, instead a handful of puny leaders without any relevant leadership skills in governance are trying to ram very ill-advised laws which have been written up by their crony capitalists friends to permanently suck on the entire population with no qualms of its dire consequences. Modi cannot be so callous as to not understand the gravity of the situation he has put the entire country in, simply to massage his personal ego. Over 150 farmers and other protestors have died since November 26, 2020, yet India’s leader Modi has not condoled their deaths even once!
This colossal ongoing ‘people protest’ has got even more entrenched and millions more will be joining the already over a million protestors blockading the capitol for the last two months. The Indian government should stop believing in their own immorality, and see the reality facing them starkly. If the laundry of list of laws (which include the three Farm Laws, new Labor Laws, etc.) negatively impinging on the economic lives of farmers, farm laborers and the over a billion working class people are not rectified for their genuine prosperity, then the day is not far when civil society will implode, making conditions uncontrollable for the ruling regime.
The ‘divide and rule’ narrative which has always been at the foundation of Brahmanical ideology is now part of modern Hindutva but the public angst is on full public display wanting no part of the BJP/RSS medieval hate ideology. The cabal of the political upper-caste or the permanent caste majority rulers cannot be taken for granted. The age of information has educated even the ordinary workers are politically aware, therefore will demand the devious electronic voting machines be removed to have fair and honest elections, bringing in a better cadre of politicians who look out for their issues and not the crony capitalists.
The American Sikh Council (ASC) is extremely concerned for the welfare of all people of India, especially the farmers and the poor, who may not fully comprehend the impending doom being foisted on them by a dictatorial government. It is about time the rest of the world recognized the true nature of that government, something which has been on full display for the last two months.
Hypocrisy and antics of the Modi regime to stymie the Peoples Protest!
The American Sikh Council (ASC) is shocked how the leaders of the Indian government mock and patronize the farmers in general while demeaning and disrespecting them continuously with the collaboration of the media, because today the ‘cat is out of the bag’ and even a 5th grade student understands the gravity of the incredibly determinantal effects of the three Farm Laws enacted unconstitutionally.
How can a government which is feigning to be honest, yet is downright corrupt, hold itself up in the court of public opinion, while pretending to do right by the farmers? The proof is in the pudding and out in the open for the entire world to see.
In the last two months the leaders of all the farmer’s unions have collectively given non-stop statements after every one of the ten sham meetings with the government and being completely transparent about their wants even holding meetings with the press. Every normal, ethical and democratic government always holds press conferences in such situations, but the Modi regime has not held a single press conference apprising the public about its intent or progress, rather treating the peaceful protestors as enemies of the state with an air of disdain.
Two well-known examples show the world class corruption and dismantling of all the four pillars (legislature, executive, judiciary and media) of the Indian government.
The infamous Gujarat Genocide of Muslims in February 2002 which involved the then Chief Minister Modi and currently India’s Prime Minister. After many investigations, but especially after the shocking evidence presented with eye witnesses by Journalist Rana Ayoub there is simply no doubt about the perpetrators and their direct and nefarious role in the murder of thousands of overwhelmingly innocent Muslims, men, women and children. Yet the judiciary ignored and belittled Ayoub’s findings and let all the major criminals get away scot free, while some of them rule India.
The other longstanding blemish on India has been the demolition of the Babri Masjid in December 1992. The Supreme Court of India came out with a verdict finally in November 2019 handing over the disputed site to the Hindu majority, who claimed that their god Ram was born at the location. The verdict was based on over a thousand pages of mythology, simply to appease an emboldened majority populace.
At a bare minimum unless and until the judiciary and media are genuinely independent and conduct themselves ethically the country is eventually doomed.
It is shocking that out of 545 elected members of parliament 163 have criminal records and 123 have serious criminals’ records, totaling 286. It is mind-boggling that over 52% of India’s elected legislatures are certified criminals, yet the Indian government is calling anyone but especially all religious minorities who question them, as traitors, terrorists, conspirators, anti-national, etc., except themselves. https://adrindia.org/
The new election laws which came into place in 2018 take the cake! Modi has put in place what are called Election Bonds which are in the following denominations; $13 (Rs.1,000), $133, $1,333, $13,333 and $133,333 (Rs. One Crore). Any Indian citizen with a PAN card can purchase any amount towards helping a specific political party. There is absolutely no transparency whatsoever, as the bank(s) do not have to divulge who the purchaser was of the Election Bond, thereby opening the floodgates of untaxed/unaccounted money to find a safe passage to help the ruling party. In the previous election out of $186 million funds raised, over 73% were received by BJP to elect Modi.
Furthermore, the Indian government is always quick to point out the ‘foreign hand or foreign meddling’ in any issue they do not like, yet the same election law enacted in 2018 allows any foreign entity to purchase Election Bonds, freely. Very strange indeed, as this is not only allowing any foreign government but any crooked crony capitalist who want to curry massive favors to freely indulge in skewing the election results. Example: Amazon or Walmart can use this legal loophole to take advantage and help elect the government they want and change the entire market in their own favor. That is exactly what the special interest corporate monopolistic traders like Ambanis and Adnanis have already done. No wonder Modi has no intention of backing down from the three ‘Farmers Laws’ even though they spell the death knell for all ordinary Indians.
While most western countries by design still use paper votes rather than electronic voting machines (EVM) from local to national elections, India has used the EVMs in 2014 and 2018 giving Modi of the RSS/BJP a landslide win. The EVMs were manufactured in Japan where they still use paper votes, but today the genie is out of the bottle. The RSS/BJP party’s incredible deception has been publicized by the alternate media, as to how they have refigured the EVM software to give extra votes to BJP regardless of who the constituent voted for, making millions of bogus votes favoring the current incumbent for high office.
These unbelievable frauds being perpetrated on a grand scale on Indian citizens are the reasons why more Indians are waking up and supporting this particular farmers’ protests.
From a purely farmer led protest by Sikhs of Punjab, today this massive public dissent has become a people’s movement of all concerned Indians who understand that a gargantuan swindle is being perpetuated on them by the Modi government, which will put over a billion Indians on the street who will literally starve.
Just one of the three diabolical ‘Farmers’ Laws’ known as ‘The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020’ should terrify all Indians. This law will affect all Indians, the rich but especially the poor who are over a billion.
Hoarding of essential commodities is a crime at the moment. The new law will remove commodities such as onions, tomatoes, etc., out of the law of hoarding unless there is a major calamity like a war. In essence a procurer could hoard an unlimited supply of perishable and non-perishables and charge an exorbitant price legally and face no backlash.
On non-perishable items such as oil, beans, and other grains the price limit will be at least 50% price rise. In other words, the procurer could raise the price by 49% every year without any penalties whatsoever.
On perishable items such as fruits and vegetables the price limit will be at least 100%, allowing the wholesaler/retailer full rein to raise the prices by 99% every year without consequences.
Principally prices would skyrocket in geometric progression on all essential food commodities within a very short period, that over a billion Indians would not be able to afford basic food, completely destabilizing the economy, worsening the inflation, very quickly Indians will be on the streets and potentially creating serious civil unrest at a national scale.
The current status-quo of ‘goonda-raj combined with crony capitalism’ has been taken to the extreme and must be reined in immediately before the drivers of Hindutva take the country down the slippery slope of no return, because then they will have no choice, but to blame the Hindutvadis and not any other!
Supporting the world’s largest people’s protest in India!
It has been over 55 days since farmers, farm laborers, middlemen, common citizens, men, women, children, and even the handicapped have camped out on five major highways blockading the Indian capital of New Delhi. By now the entire planet is aware of the largest protest by farmers and others, happening peacefully in the world’s largest ‘democracy’.
This protest is incredibly peaceful, disciplined, organized, well-fed, entertained and much more all by the protesters themselves. This protest has become the envy of the world as an ideal example of how a real protest must be led, putting the Gandhis’ of yore to shame.
The farmers of Punjab have shown the world an incredible example of true servant leadership, while making sure they are fighting for ‘Sarbat the Balla’ (Welfare of All) in this monumental people’s protest. The Sikhs in particular and Punjab have endless ongoing unresolved issues vis-à-vis the Indian government. Those unaddressed grievances are genuine and must be resolved sooner than later. But, right now the entire focus is to repeal the three morbid Farmers Laws, with the help of every Indian citizen. Millions of ordinary Indians of every religious hue are joining and the protests are getting bigger by the day, even though the government is using all the tools of state apparatus to stop people across India from reaching New Delhi.
The RSS/BJP party of the Modi government with the help of the massive Ambani/Adnani media machine at its disposal, is trigger happy to belittle and malign the farmers and especially Sikh farmers leading the protest as Khalistanis backed by an unknown foreign country, Hindu farmers as Marxists backed by China, Muslim protesters as Pakistanis and the list of crass allegations is endless.
In the last one week the Indian government out of desperation is using its National Investigation Agency (NIA) to harass and intimidate many of the leaders of farm unions, various independent journalists, well-known actors/singers, ordinary Sikhs helping serve langar and many others. The current government has no experience and has never dealt with a unique protest of this kind and that too led by Sikh farmers from Punjab.
Even though the farmers of Haryana have had a huge role to play, but being Hindus primarily have not been targeted yet, by the government. The Modi government is only looking for the lamest of excuses to label and malign Sikhs as Khalistani – antinational so that they can arrest them to quell and derail the massive protest, which has really shaken the government.
It is critical that the focus should be to fully support this mass protest, while no organization of any kind, in or out of India should interfere in this protest in any shape or form. Outside meddling in the current protest can derail the collective focus because the Indian government enjoys harassing even legitimate dissenters by arresting and detaining them indefinitely. Since Sikhs are the primary targets it is imperative that the collective unity and discipline be maintained to help make the ‘People’s Protest’ a complete success.
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