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Davinder Singh: facts, questions, and first thoughts

A decorated, trusted, J&K cop, Davinder Singh, was arrested on 11th Jan 2020 by the J&K police while accompanying two known militants and an alleged associate of theirs apparently to Chandigarh or Delhi, presumably to carry out a terrorist attack. The two militants each apparently carried a bounty of Rs. 15-20 lakh on their heads.

The arrest allegedly happened following an intercepted conversation between known militants by the J&K police. According to the J&K police, three AK-47 rifles and five grenades were also recovered from Singh's residence.

Davinder Singh is a man with a past. He is a self-confessed torturer. Most famously, he tortured Afzal Guru, who was hanged in 2013 for the 2001 Parliament Attack. Singh's own words during a subsequent interview suggest that he probably tortured many others - this was essentially his job in the SOG (special operations group) at the time. Apart from torture, he was also accused of being directly involved in terrorism. In 2004 Afzal Guru had, in writing, accused Davinder Singh of making arrangements for the parliament attack, specifically of tasking him with taking one of the attackers to Delhi and arranging his accommodation. Remarkably, Singh's possible involvement in such a major terrorist atrocity was not investigated following this accusation.

Snooping as the new normal

Surveillance is going be a major theme in 2020. The good news is that there will be lots of dissent and protest this year. But how will an authoritarian government without a concept of compromise - or even tactical retreat - deal with widespread protest? Especially if this protest involves a large number of Muslims?

First, protestors will be demonised mercilessly. A propaganda attack must be the first response according to their war manual. We have had six years to see how the violent, communal rhetoric of the "proud to be followed by PM Narendra Modi" twitter army sets the tone of more mainstream discourse. The protestors will be anti-national, extremist, illiterate, puncture-wallahs who can be identified by their clothes. The Sangh twitterati will find evidence of a foreign hand - where there are signs of intelligent life, they see a foreign hand. The importance of a foreign hand is that once there is a foreign hand, nothing is off-limits. The propaganda is to pave the way for a "law and order" response to the protests. Dissenters need to be monitored, controlled and punished. We have already seen this language in use.

Children in Narendra Modi's India

Two recent stories involving children and the anti-CAA protests may have caught your attention: an 8 year old was amongst those killed taking part in the protests; and a video of two young boys went viral - wearing BJP hats, they chant a slogan about shooting "traitors", namely protestors. (We have not linked to this video, since these children are victims too). This prompted us to look back at recent articles we tagged "children". What did we find? The nature of articles we archive means that naturally it was grim. The links are to specific examples, but there are many more.

deshkosh entry on the misuse of sedition laws in Narendra Modi's India

Section 124A of the Indian Penal Code defines "sedition", roughly, to be the act of inciting disaffection towards the government. The sedition law has been used as a tool to stifle protest and freedom of expression by consecutive governments in India. In particular it has been widely misused since the Narendra Modi government came to power at the centre in 2014.

Is the Narendra Modi government the most corrupt in India's history?

To answer this question we first need to define "corruption". Definitions of corruption can be more or less broad. The Merriam-Webster definition is perhaps the broadest: "dishonest or illegal behavior especially by powerful people"[1].

What does acche din mean?

[The recent verdict of the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya title dispute case can be regarded as a rather extreme instance of "acche din" (अच्छे दिन) for the forces of Hindu nationalism. It brings closer a long-standing commitment of the RSS and its various offshoots to build a Ram temple on the site of the destroyed Babri Mosque. The phrase "acche din" has come to be used mainly by the opponents of Narendra Modi, and is now used in a variety of ways.

Thoughts on the Supreme Court verdict in the Ayodhya dispute

Today, the supreme court awarded the land on which Babri Masjid once stood to the Hindu parties in the dispute - essentially to the VHP - the key player in the destruction of the ancient Mosque. With his characteristic eloquence Narendra Modi referred to the verdict as "a new dawn for us".

A few things about history you should quickly learn...

The RSS played a glorious role in the freedom struggle. This struggle was finally successful on Independence Day - May 16th 2014 - when India was freed after 1,200 years of slavery. Now we are free we realise that development = big statues. When the Rs 2,500 crore statue of Sardar Patel is built, we will finally be the most developed nation in the world. [1,2,3,4,5,6]

The caste system worked well until stupid Marxists with "no respect for the ancient systems and philosophy" decided to misinterpret it. In ancient times there was "no complaint from any quarters" against it. Caste is meant "for the material and human resource management of a civilized society". [7]

The Vedas contain descriptions of many scientific and technological wonders, and the basis for modern mathematics. The Rig Veda includes a calculation of the speed of light. There were aircraft and even nuclear wars in ancient India. The Ramayana and the Mahabharata are true accounts of the periods in which they were written. [8,9,10,11,12]

Saffronizing the legal system

Newly appointed Supreme Court judge Adarsh Goel seems to be a long-standing RSS man. No mainstream paper has carried this fact, but he used to be general secretary of the Sangh's legal front organisation "Akhil Bharatiya Adhivakta Parishad" (ABAP), founded in 1992 "to work constantly for the improvement and evolution of a judicial system which is in harmony with the genius of the nation and in consonance with Bharatiya traditions, values and sense of justice and to make the justice delivery system more efficient." (http://www.outlookindia.com/article.aspx?205426-0). It appears Goel also represented the Govt of Delhi in cases related to the 1984 anti-Sikh pogrom (http://www.sabrang.com/cc/archive/2005/june05/cover2.html)...

Report of Sadbhavana Padyatra in Pune on 15th June, 2014

A sadbhavana padyatra or march from Gadital to Gandhi chowk took place in Pune on 15th June to show solidarity with Mohsin Shaikh who was lynched to death by miscreants of Hindu Rashtra Sena earlier this month. The march got a strong response with around 1000 people being present for the march. This march was organized by Rashtriya Ekatmata Samiti which is headed by Baba Addav. Activists and youth walked the distance holding banners and posters saying ‘We are Indians and we are proud of it’, ‘Unity in Diversity’.

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