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Indian Muslim

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    By IANS,

    Ahmedabad : As his puppy analogy while talking about the 2002 post-Godhra riots raked up a controversy Friday, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi later clarified saying all forms of life are valued.

    "In our culture, every form of life is valued and worshipped," Modi said in a comment on micro-blogging site Twitter.

    Modi, in an interview to newswire Reuters, was asked if he "regretted" the 2002 riots. Responding to this, Modi said: "Even If I am in the back seat of a car and a puppy comes under the wheels, will it be painful or not? Of course, it is. Whether I'm a chief minister or not, I'm a human being. If something bad happens anywhere, it is natural to be sad."

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's comment using a puppy analogy while talking about the 2002 post-Godhra riots raked up a controversy Friday. The BJP - as well as Modi himself - said he has been misinterpreted.

    Modi, in an interview to Reuters, was asked if he "regretted" the 2002 riots. Responding to this, Modi said: "Even If I am in the back seat of a car and a puppy comes under the wheels, will it be painful or not? Of course, it is. Whether I'm a chief minister or not, I'm a human being. If something bad happens anywhere, it is natural to be sad."

    The comment did not sit well with many, with leaders from several political parties slamming him for comparing the riot victims with puppies.

    The Congress said the comments were callous and regrettable.

    "Giving the analogy of a puppy getting crushed under a car in a very casual manner is very regrettable. It's a very callous way of referring to human life," Congress spokesperson Sanjay Jha said.

    "It is a very sad, humiliating and disturbing statement. He is saying Muslims are worse than even puppies? He should immediately apologise to the people of this nation," said Samajwadi Party's Kamal Farooqui.

    Janata Dal-United leader Shivanand Tiwari said the comments showed "he is not an inclusive leader. He is selective".

    The BJP, however, came out in his defence and said the comments were misinterpreted.

    "It is despicable to say Modi compared a community to dogs. It's absolutely unfortunate and I only wish that much before more comments are made and interpretations are made, people should read the interview and in what context it was made," BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said.

    "This is a complete misinterpretation leading to unwanted controversy which doesn't exist. I appeal to all to read the interview fully and understand it before getting your retorts ready," she said.

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    By IANS,

    Srinagar : A shutdown called by the separatists and selective restrictions by the authorities marked Martyrs' Day in Srinagar Saturday, as floral tributes were paid to those who laid down their lives in 1931 protesting autocracy.

    Authorities imposed restrictions in five police station areas of Khanyar, Nowhatta, S.R. Gunj, Rainawari and Safa Kadal in the old city to maintain law and order.

    Though officially these restrictions were termed "preventive measures", the restrictions halted life in areas where they were imposed.

    Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, accompanied by Finance Minister Abdur Rahim Rather, Rural Development Minister Ali Muhammad Sagar, Lok Sabha member Sharief-ud-Din Shariq and senior police and civil officers paid floral tributes at the martyrs' graveyard at Khwaja Bazaar in the old city, where a contingent of state police presented a guard of honour to the chief minister.

    On July 13, 1931, a large crowd gathered outside the central jail where Abdul Qadeer, a Pathan butler who had raised his voice against the autocratic rule of the Dogra Maharaja, was being tried in-camera.

    As the crowd stormed the jail, guards opened indiscriminate fire, killing 28 people. Those killed in the central jail firing are known as the martyrs of 1931.

    Separatist leaders called for a general shutdown Saturday because of which markets, public transport and other businesses remained closed in the city.

    Government offices, educational institutions, banks and post offices are, however, closed as the Martyr's Day is also observed as a public holiday.

    Senior separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik and others have been placed under house arrest by the authorities to prevent their participation in separatist protests.

    Spontaneous stone-pelting incidents occurred Friday evening at Nowhatta area of the old city, where young people engaged security forces in clashes till late in the night.

    The protests were held against the house arrest of Mirwaiz Umer Farooq who could not deliver the Friday sermon at Jamia mosque in old city.

    The day was especially important as the first Friday of the Holy Muslim month of Ramadan, which started here Thursday.

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    By Mohit Dubey, IANS,

    Lucknow : Breaking the ritualistic fast in the holy month of Ramadan would also mark a break with tradition in the one-time city of nawabs here. After the prayers, devout Muslims could eat pizzas, burgers, or even pancakes!

    Ten mosques in the city - the capital of Uttar Pradesh with a substantial Muslim population 0 under the Hussainabad Trust, finding that city palates have changed and that fewer people now stay for their food at the mosque after the evening namaaz, and that large quantities of food go waste, are set to serve food that is more in tune with modern and younger tastes -- pizzas, burgers, French fries, pancakes and even chowmien -- to "rozedaars", or people observing the fast.

    A worried management has decided to "shape up the menu in such a way that fasting devotees stay back and relish the food when they break their fast in the evenings," said an official, explaining that the Roza Aftaar, the meal that marks the breaking of the fast, had a new menu.

    The matter of dwindling rozedaars staying back to break their fast at the mosques was brought to the notice of the management and the city administration by the general secretary of the erstwhile royal family of Avadh, Shikoh Azad.

    Following this, the secretary of the Hussainabad Trust and the additional district magistrate (West) Hari Pratap Shahi, formed a "nigrani committee" which deliberated and decided on the menu for the Roza Aftari. This committee also included people from the civil defence. A budget of Rs.10 lakh has been sanctioned for the new-look Roza Aftaar this year, which is Rs.4 lakh above last year's budget, Azad told IANS.

    Traditionally the "dastarkhwaan" (meal) of the Roza Aftaar includes biryaani, shaami kabab, bun and butter, aloo patties, aloo kachalu, bananas and dates.

    Other than the pizza and burgers, the menu this time in these ten mosques would also included pancakes, spring rolls and boiled eggs.

    Talking to IANS, Azad said that 600 poor people would be fed roti and 'daal saalan' each day in the holy month.

    "The idea of the changed menu is not only to do away with wastage of food, but also offer the best to the people who are fasting in the name of Allah," a management committee office bearer said.

    Orders have been placed with prominent local eateries to supply in bulk pizzas and pancakes, while local 'khaansaama's (chefs) have been recruited for cooking the other delicacies.

    The Muslim population in Lucknow is around 25 percent of the total 4.8 million people in the city.

    Lucknow was established as capital city by the Shia nawabs of Awadh in the 18th century. The nawabs traced their ancestry to Persia (modern Iran).

    (Mohit Dubey can be contacted at

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    By TCN News,

    New Delhi: "Ma'm, Kya Pakistan mein Hindus rehte hai?" (Ma'm, Do Hindus live in Pakistan?) asked a student.

    "Haan, Beta. Pakistan mei Hindu, Sikh, Christians, sab rehte hai" (Yes my son, there are Hindus, Sikhs, Christians and people of other religions in Pakistan), replied Saeeda Diep, a renowned Peace Activist and Chairperson, Institute of Peace & Secular Studies, Lahore from Pakistan.

    What do people from Pakistan think about us? came another question.

    To which, she replied, "Pakistanis know about your country and culture because they have access to Indian TV channels but unforunately, no Pakistani channels are permitted in India so Indians only know what the news channels portray.”

    Saeeda Diep with students of Columbia school

    Several other questions, some related to political issues and controversies, were posed to Saeeda ji during 'Aman Chaupal', an initiative of Aaghaz-e-Dosti for Indo-Pak peace and friendship. This was the first Aman Chaupal wherein Saeeda Diep Ji , a renowned peace activist and Chairperson of Institute of Peace & Secular Studies (IPSS) interacted with students from classes 6th-12th on 10th July 2013 at Coumbia Foundation Senior Secondary School , New Delhi.

    The interaction was entirely in Hindustani as according to Saeeda ji, speaking in English would be very "artificial".

    Aaghaz-e-Dosti, an initiative of India-based Mission Bhartiyam, works to create unwavering bonds of peace and friendship between India and Pakistan. Under this initiative, it has launched Aman Chaupal with the aim to enhance people-to-people communication. Like in our traditional baithaks or chaupals, people from Pakistan or those who have been to Pakistan share their experiences. It is an interactive session meant to address and arouse curiosity.

    First Aman Chaupal was organized at Columbia Foundation Sr Sec School, Vikaspuri, New Delhi. In her address to students of Columbia Foundation Sr Sec School, Saeeda Diep ji talked about the general stereotypes and misconceptions that people have about Pakistan and Pakistanis. She tried to show them the side of Pakistan that Indians never get to know because of lack of communication and a biased or as she had put it, "hawkish" media. The session was entirely devoted to a question-answer format wherein Saeeda ji had answered students' questions.

    It ended with the Principal, Deepshika Dandu, sharing her personal experiences with Pakistanis during her stay in a foreign nation. She remarked that, "In a foreign nation, Indians and Pakistanis often form a transnational community bounded by a shared culture, language and experience."

    On the same day, Second Aman Chaupal was also organised at South Asian University, New Delhi. It began with a meeting with the President or the Vice chancellor of the university, Prof. G.K. Chaddha. Prof. Chaddha gave a very warm welcome to Saeeda ji. The conversation which was entirely in punjabi revolved around their personal experiences, memories, and about the university.

    After the meeting, Saeeda ji had also interacted with a small group and answered their questions.

    This programme was co-ordinated by Aaghaz-e-Dosti team consisting of Ravi Nitesh, Devika Mittal and V Arun Kumar.

    The organisers said, “In this current scenario of disturbed relations, Aman Chaupal is an important resource for peace and friendship. It is important for people to know what the other side is because miscommunication has been the most dangerous weapon. So they plan to organise Aman Chaupal in several other schools in India as well as in Pakistan.”

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    Dr Mohammad Manzoor Alam,

    On July 7 a series of low-intensity bomb explosions in the Mahabodhi Budhist temple at Bodh Gaya in Bihar killed two persons and injured several others.

    Next day, as usual, the newspapers said it was the handiwork of Indian Mujahideen, an amorphous group that, according to intelligence agencies, specialises in such terror.

    There was no ground for bringing in a “Muslim terror” group in the picture. It was merely out of old habit that led to the needle being pointed towards Muslims even though there was no clear reason why an Indian Muslim group should target a historic Budhist site. In India there is no record of Muslim-Budhist conflict.

    To Muslim eyes it looked like Chattisingpura massacre of Sikhs in Kashmir by security forces personnel during Bill Clinton’s visit. The killers passed on the blame to “Muslim terrorists” and quickly gunned down several innocent young Muslims saying they were the people who had killed the Sikhs. The real culprits were found later.

    The media’s indecent haste jeopardised Muslim-Sikh relations, but thanks to the patience and wisdom of both sides it did not turn into a Muslim-Sikh conflict. That the real criminals were soon found out also helped.

    Media’s irresponsible conjecture has every potential of creating a Muslim-Budhist confrontation in India. The long shot logic is that Indian Mujahideen may have carried out the attack to avenge the persecution of Rohingya Muslims by Budhists in Myanmar. Who said that it was a revenge against the persecution of Muslims in Myanmar? The Times of India in its July 9 edition wrote, “Some say it was an IM strike against ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.”

    Who are those “some” who are saying so? Are they police or intelligence men? No. Then, who are they? The fact is that there is no source for it and it is merely a communal conjecture on the part of the writer himself.

    On one of the bombs was written, “To protest Iraq war,” according to this report. The point here is that Iraq being a Muslim country, it must have been the handiwork of a Muslim group. But how is Iraq related to Myanmar? Or to a Budhist temple in Gaya? Iraq war’s responsibility lied with the US and Britain, not with Myanmar or Gaya.

    As if to put its weight behind the Rohingya guess, The Times of India used a bold headline in red saying, “Using Rohingya Factor to Stoke Trouble.” The text that followed did not specifically say that the bombs were planted to avenge attacks on Rohingyas.

    Meanwhile the fact remains that even after five days of the blasts India’s premier intelligence and security agencies, NIA, IB and NSG have not got a clue to who was behind the attacks. Why can’t we think of some Hindutva terror group as did Digvijay Singh? In the past Sangh terrorists have created such havoc, particularly to polarise Hindu vote. Interestingly, a watch used as a timer to trigger the blasts had a lotus mark on it. Lotus is the symbol of BJP. So, why can’t this enter the thought of media’s reporters and writers as the first flash?

    (Dr Mohammad Manzoor Alam Chairman Institute of Objective Studies.)

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : Accusing the Congress of dividing the nation on religious lines and ruining the economy, the BJP said Saturday that the people will "never forgive" the party.

    Addressing the media here, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi criticised Minority Affairs Minister K. Rahman Khan's proposal for setting up a task force to oversee terror cases involving Muslims.

    "His (Khan) proposal for setting up of a special task force to oversee the terror cases against the members of the Muslim community is a recent addition to the party's ongoing strategy to polarise India," Lekhi said, adding that a perception was sought to be created that Muslims were being targeted in false cases.

    "The Congress has once again demonstrated its intention to divide India on religious lines," she said.

    Lekhi said that there were reports suggesting the alleged involvement of Khan in Amananth Co-operative Bank scam in south India.

    "There are reports of alleged Rs.2 lakh crores worth of scam involving encroachment and sale of wakf properties," she said.

    Accusing the Congress of taking the Muslim community for a "royal ride", Lekhi said the party, since independence had ensured that the community didn't prosper.

    "The Congress along with a coalition of corrupt parties has sought to create a false sense of insecurity amongst the minorities and thereby hampered mainstreaming of all citizens," she said.

    Reacting to accusations terming Ishrat Jahan shootout case in the BJP-ruled Gujarat as fake, Lekhi said that the Congress was misquoting facts pertaining to shootouts.

    "The NHRC (National Human Rights Commission) data firstly, shows that there are more fake encounters in Congress-ruled states and, secondly, more Hindus have been killed in fake encounters," she said.

    "After inflicting such deadly wounds as price rise, inflation, rupee devaluation, corruption, lawlessness and communal hatred for nearly 10 years, the Congress party must be defaced and exposed," she added.

    "India will never forgive this party," Lekhi said.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh Saturday slammed Gujarat Chief Minister for saying he was a "Hindu nationalist" and said asked him to be a "nationalist Indian".

    "Shouldn't we all be nationalist Indians rather than Hindu nationalists or Muslim nationalists or Sikh nationalists or Christian nationalists," Digvijaya Singh asked in his tweet Saturday.

    Attacking the BJP's Election Campaign Committee chief for showcasing himself as a Hindu nationalist, Singh tweeted: "Don't divide this great nation on basis of religion which (Veer) Savarkar and Jinnah did. They were the original authors of the two-nation theory."

    In an interview to a newswire agency, Modi had said: "I am nationalist. I'm patriotic. Nothing is wrong. I am a born Hindu. Nothing is wrong. So I'm a Hindu nationalist. So yes, you can say I'm a Hindu nationalist because I'm a born Hindu."

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    By TCN News,

    New Delhi: Popular Front of India strongly has condemned the statement of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for “comparing the thousands of innocent Muslims killed in Gujarat genocide in 2002 with puppies.”

    PFI demanded an apology from Narendra Modi for this “shameful statement.”

    “It is very shameful that Modi has justified his role in Gujarat Genocide-2002 by mentioning the 'clean chit' given by the Special Investigation Team,” a press statement by the PFI said.

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    By TCN News,

    Bhopal: The Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) while vehemently condemning Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s reported comments about 2002 pogrom, wherein thousands of Muslims were massacred when he lorded over the affairs of the state, has demanded his apology forthwith.

    SDPI national president A. Sayeed in a statement said Modi’s analogy to 2002 pogrom of a puppy getting crushed under a car in a very casual manner is very reprehensible and shows his pervert mentality. It is a mockery and insult that first he master-minded mass murder of innocent Muslims, now he is engaged in to influence justice system. His “love” (hatred) for Muslims can be gauged from the fact that he stopped distribution of Centre-sponsored minority scholarships for Muslim students in Gujarat.

    Sayeed pointed out that in the reported interview Narendra Modi has very proudly stated that he is a "Hindu Nationalist". It may be noted that the Hindu part comes first and the Indian next. And he explains this by saying that he is born a Hindu and he is a "Nationalist". But for others and more specifically for the Muslims the Sangh Parivar emphasises that the Indian or Nationalist should come first and their religion next, otherwise their loyalty to the nation is suspect. Is this not an attempt to divide India on the basis of religion. What a partisan and biased logic?

    He said that Modi aspires to be Prime Minister of India, being propped up by the Sangh Parivar. He recalled that even the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had asked him to follow his “Rajdharma” (duty of protecting the subjects) but he (Modi) did not care two hoots for it. Does he want to become Prime Minister of Hindutva forces only. Will his dream of attaining summit success materialise in a plural society which India represents.

    Sayeed also called upon the Muslim scholars, leaders and general mass to realize how the Indian elites and fascist groups are estimating the Muslim community. It is the responsibility of the Muslim scholars and leaders to come forward to uplift, strengthen and empower the community instead of serving their political masters.

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    Teesta Setalvad

    Seven days before Reuters published its exclusive, a privilege denied by PM aspirant to an Indian news agency or channel, we had been contacted persistently by a Reuters correspondent while I was in New Delhi (July 5).

    Not Ross Colvin or Sruthi Gottipati who now carry the journalistic honour of grabbing moments with a man who rarely likes to be questioned, especially if the questions are persistent like say those of Karan Thapar in 2007. Thapar keen to get to the bottom of what Modi actually felt about 2002, did not simply casually record –as Reuters has done – Modi’s response but asked, insistently, whether Modi actually regretted the mass reprisal killings that had taken place, post Godhra, on his watch. Modi simpered, dithered, glared and admonished…when none of that worked, and Thapar persisted, Modi did what he does best. He walked out.

    Not so with Reuters, that managed its exclusive but failed to, conspicuously, persist with any accurate, difficult or pinching questions.

    The young man from Reuters who finally tracked me down in the Sahmat office at 29 Ferozeshah Road last week was clueless, he said, about Gujarat 2002. Apologetic about this ineptness, he kept saying that his bosses had asked him to track down the SIT report. They had not bothered to contact us directly.

    We insisted that he, read Reuters, do what fair journalism demands, look at the SIT Clean Chit in context; examine also the Amicus Curaie Raju Ramachandran’s report that conflicted seriously with the SIT Closure and Clean Chit (opining that there was material to prosecute Narendra Modi on serious charges).

    Both the SIT and the Amicus were appointed by the same Supreme Court. We insisted that Reuters examine the Supreme Court Order of 12.9.2011 that gave us the inalienable right to file a Protest Petition, we pointed out that Reuters must read the Protest Petition itself that we filed in pursuance of this order on 15.4.2013, peruse the arguments that we have been making before the Magistrate since June 25, 2013.

    We tried, as best as we could, to communicate that Reuters should read the SIT Clean Chit in the context of these overall developments.

    No, No said Reuters that had possibly already bagged the interview by then.

    Who says a politically important interview should address all developments and facts, in a nutshell, tell the whole and complete story? Much better to perform a tokenism, throw in a few questions about 2002, not persist with questioning the man charged with conspiracy to commit mass murder and subvert criminal justice with the complexities and gravity of charges and legal procedures that he currently faces – and which are being argued in Open Court in Ahmedabad. Easier to be glib, grab headlines in all national dailies including by the way the one in Telegraph which is the only newspaper to report that Modi used “kutte ke bacche” not puppy as an analogy for which creatures may inadvertently get crushed when a “road accident happens.” Never mind that many have been convicted for criminal negligence when they drive and kill.

    On business and development, too, while Reuters plugs the man themselves in the first paragraph of the interview, there are no real probing questions on Foreign Direct Investment, the Gujarat government’s back out to solar power companies (reported two days ago in the Economic Times) and so on….

    So quite apart from the more than despicable “kutte ke bacche” comment that Modi reportedly made, quite apart from the fact that he chose Reuters for his debutante mutterings not a national agency or channel, what is truly tragic about the whole exercise is the compliant journalism that it reflects.

    The Reuters interview is not a dispassionate or thorough exercise that attempts to genuinely probe opinions and views. It is a sensational tokenism.

    (Teesta Setalvad is the secretary of Citizens for Justice and Peace.)

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    Separate line for Muslim voters in Panchayat elections has also been made for convenience of those fasting.

    By Zaidul Haque,,

    Kolkata: West Bengal State Election Commission has allowed time relaxation to the Muslim Vote workers and has made special arrangement for sehri and Iftar inside the polling both area. For the first time in West Bengal State Panchayet Election is being held during Ramzan.

    However, although State Election Commissioner issued a notice but most of the polling offices could not arrange for the same, several Muslim organisations alleged. It should be mentioned here that vote workers generally get food and snacks when on duty and since Muslim workers would not have snacks or lunch, as fasting is on, arrangements for Sehri and ifatrs have instead been made.

    State Election Commissior Mira Pande claimed that sepcial arrangement for Namaz, sehri and Iftar have been made. She told media persons that nearly 9% of the poll workers currently engaged are Muslims.

    Commission needed at least five government workers in every booth, so they have tried to decrease the Muslim workers number during due to the holy month of Ramzan. Commission directed all the district authorities to keep the Muslim workers in reserve bench as much as possible.

    First phase of voting was done on 11 July in Purulia, Bankura and West Medinipur district. In these districts Muslim population is not as large.

    State election Commission, however, made arrangement for a separate line for Muslim voters for their convenience as fasting has already begun. They assured that the same system will be followed in rest of the phases, when elections in Muslim dominant districts of Malda, Murshidabad, etc would take place.

    Second phase of the Panchayat Election will be held on 15 July in Burdwan, East Medinipur and Hooghly distrcit, third phase will be held on 19 July in Howrah, North 24 Parganas and South 24 Parganas, fourth phase would be on 2 July in Nadia, Murshidabad, Malda and Birbhum, and finally in the fifth phase on 25 July elections will be held in Coochbehar, Jalpaiguri, North Dinajpur and South Dinajpur.

    Muslim organisations have welcomed the move, but urged the State Election Commission to maintain the same guidelines for the rest of the phases and to direct the respective presiding officers to execute the order.

    All India Minority Youth Federation (MYF) rasied complained to the state Election commission office that most of the presiding officer ignored the direction of the Commission regarding time relaxation and Iftar, Sehri arrangement. Secretary of the MYF Muhammad Kamruzzaman alleged that he got information that in the first phase the direction was not properly implemented at several places and urged the election commission to direct the presiding officers for proper implementation.

    They have also demanded to arrange for more non-Muslim vote workers in Mursdhidabad, where nearly 70 percent voters are Muslims. Anjuman-e-Islamia of Coochbehar distrcit appealed to the State Election Commission to arrange for a separate hall for Muslim voters.

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  • 07/13/13--10:35: Guerrillas kill Kashmir cop
  • By IANS,

    Srinagar : Separatist guerrillas Saturday killed a head constable of the Jammu and Kashmir Police, an officer said.

    Head Constable Sonaullah Zargar, who was on vacation in his native village, was killed in a forest in Kupwara district, a police officer said here.

    "This (Saturday) morning, Zargar, son of Abdul Gani and resident of Hardoona Vilgam village in Handwara tehsil, had gone to a nearby forest along with his wife for collection of firewood," the officer said.

    "The duo was intercepted by some unknown militants in the forest and Sonnaullah was killed by the militants in a gruesome manner," he said, adding that his wife was not harmed.

    The area has been cordoned off and the body of the head constable was handed over to his relatives for last rites, police said.

    Zargar, earlier posted in Srinagar, had come to his village to meet his family. He is survived by his wife and four children, police said.

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  • 07/13/13--10:38: Ramadan 1434: Madrasa
  • By Swastik Pal,,

    Zakaria Street in Kolkata is a densely-populated Muslim area. This Madrasa is the only means of education for many. Here the evening classes continue after the iftari and the prayers. Underneath the portraits of Jawaharlal Nehru and Maulana Azad, some of the questions on the black board reads- Who was Alexander? Who is the author of Meghdoot and Shakuntala? Name of the Guru of Sikhs?


    Ramadan 1434: TCN series

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    By TCN news,

    Hyderabad: Advocate Adam Malik, president of Majlis Bachao Tehreek (‘Save Majlis Movement’, breakaway faction of Majlis-e-Itehadul Muslimeen) breathed his last after a heart attack on Friday 4:0 p.m. Adam Malik who was on Ramzan fast after Friday prayer started complaining about chest pain. He was shifted to Apollo hospital at Kanchan Bagh where he died due to heart attack.

    The news of his sudden death created distress among MBT cadres whom along with party convener Khayam Khan, spokesperson Farhatullah Khan, and counselor Amjedullah Khan crowded his house to pay their last respects. Siasat Urdu daily editor Zahid Ali Khan, state JIH chief Khaja Arifuddin, MPJ president Hamed Mohd Khan, WPI secretary Azharuddin and many other political and religious leaders visited his house to console the family and MBT workers.

    Adam Malik was a political activist since a very young age, he was part of Muslim league in Andhra Pradesh and later joined Majlis-e-Tameer-e-Millat, in 1993 when MIM veteran Amanullah Khan formed MBT Adam Malik joined the party and remained a close confidant of Amanullah Khan. After Amanullah Khan’s death in 2002, Adam Malik was elected unanimously as second president of the party the post which he held till his last breath. He contested elections two times on MBT ticket in 1996 from Secundrabad parliamentary constituency and in 2004 from Charminar constituency. He is survived by his wife and three sons.

    His funeral prayer was held on Saturday at Mecca Masjid after Zohar prayer which witnessed huge congregation of local Muslims, after which he was buried at a grave yard near his house in Baba Nagar

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    River erosion and flood are two root causes of backwardness of inhabitants of lower Assam.

    By Shahnoor Rahman for,

    To be fair to to the government and its several agencies, it often tries to analyse and find solutions to problems that affect larger population with urgent and permanent remedies. However, there is one problem which is root cause of all other problems causing severe backwardness of whole of lower Assam which can also be called as silent but mightiest dragon engulfing socio-economic pillar of poor innocent people of lower Assam. By breaking their spines not only once, but several times in their lifetime, making them all time beggars and are being laughed as 'Bangladeshi Miya' when they go to nearest town/city with only old Lungi, Tupi and Kurta to sell themselves as world's cheapest labourers, who are crushed by everyone and used by everyone are the victims of 'river erosion and flood'.

    A ferry across the stream of river cost an individual Rs 2 and is the only mean of communication with the world.

    Dear valued readers, I am going to tell you a story today which is about my own native place. I also suffered one day, but luckily Almighty saved me as we could shift our home as my father was a government high school teacher. As we were being crushed repeatedly by mighty Beki river, one of the right bank tributaries of Brahmaputra River. I am going to write this sad story feeling the amount of pain my previous neighbours are feeling who could not afford to shift their home from that hell spot. Actually it is not a story, but it is very painful harsh reality of people who had been suffering unlimitedly because of river erosion by river Beki, a tributary of mighty Brahmaputra originating from Manas traced from Mathanguri, cutting across Barpeta district. Peculier feature of this Beki river is that this river is always curved (beka), so her name is Beki and changes its direction in each summer season to take new curvy route. Perhaps, she loves to renew its courses in each new season. Problems of river erosion caused by this river are supplemented by flood, which takes away almost all ripe rice and all other mature crop plantation. This river is very gentle and beautiful in winter, but becomes very violent and destructive as the monsoon sets in. It takes away at least 500 Bigha areas per year in western part of Barpeta district and makes it part of the river. Ultimately converting them to riverine sandune (char) after a gap of 30-50 years, killing economies of around 1000 families per year who are owners of this eroded lands. Nobody except those who have really suffered can guess what could be the height and intensity of these problems and statuses of those poor downtrodden people whose everything have been looted by this demon river Beki which is nicknamed as sorrow of Barpeta district. These poor people after losing everything face a series of economic, mental and psychological trauma, they become victims of every worst conditions and hardships of life. They neither have any money to buy land and food to save life. Health and education become distant dreams for them to fulfil. Modern amenities of life are simply imaginary for them. They don’t get any help from anyone, but political parties do best to use them by drawing their votes in their favours promising their remedies. They are often left with no other option than becoming beggars, settling somewhere in newly arisen riverine islands compromising everything in their lives.

    Seeing no way out to find two seqaures meal a day, if they decide to move towards cities in Guwahati, Lakhimpur, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia etc in search of job as underpaid unskilled labourer working 18-20 hours a day without provision of any basic amenities of life, they are tagged as Bangladeshis and harassed endlessly.

    Their only fault for suffering is that they are born in those particular misfortunate areas where there is no road, no medical facilities, no transport facilities and no educational institutions except few deformed one/two L.P. Schools over an area of 100 sq km areas. In addition to river Beki, lower Assam is also prone for damage caused by river Brahmaputra and Manas. So, we can estimate now that river erosion and flood is the root of severe socio-economic backwardness of lower Assam.

    The main road of Kuntisar village, a Char across Dhubri town, from the river bank.

    But a very sad part is that this problem is age old problem since the British time, but history cannot trace any evidence that ever any government, any NGOs or any agency have tried to find permanent solution to this root cause of all problems. Government has not yet given any rehabilitation to the inhabitants of these hell spots who are equally sons and daughters of mother Assam and contributing maximum part of domestic products of Assam like eggs, chicken, fish, muttons, bamboo goods, cereals, pulses and vegetables.

    It’s the high time that we must also feel the pain of these people and pressurise the government to implement new technologies to solve the problems permanently and declare displaced people as 'internally displaced' and implement schemes for their welfare.

    (Shahnoor Rahman is a MBBS final year student at the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital, Guwahati and can be contacted


    TCN ground reports on life and condition in Chars:

    Heart of Darkness! – I

    Heart of Darkness! – II

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    By IANS,

    Thiruvananthapuram : Kerala's Malappuram district is gearing up to host India's largest Ramadan prayer congregation August 4 where believers would take a pledge against terrorism and alcoholism, the organisers said here Sunday.

    "With the spiritual experience of the holy night of Ramadan, we teach the people the message of co-existence and moderation," Sayyid Ibrahim Khaleel Al Bukhari, chairman of Ma'din Academy, organisers of the meet, told reporters here.

    The mammoth meet will take a pledge against terrorism and alcoholism besides extending a message of harmony, tolerance, love and affection, he said.

    Billed as the third largest congregation of its kind in the world, the prayer meet will be held at Malappuram's Swalath Nagar.

    At the last edition of this religious get together, a record 700,000 people had offered prayers and more than 100,000 attended the Iftar party held afterwards.

    Apart from the main venue, 20 sites on both sides of the National Highway 213 have been identified to accommodate the devotees.

    The programme would be telecast live. Special screening centres have been set up in cities like Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi in India and other major cities in the Middle East.

    Ma'din Academy is one of the leading charities in Kerala which runs more than 25 educational institutions.

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    By TCN News,

    New Delhi: Faisal khan of National Alliance of People's Movement, who started Khudai Khidmatgar has written an open letter to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi over his ‘puppy’ remark. He writes, “The ideology of hate propagated by you and your party is apparent to anyone who is not blinded by hate. The intemperate language used by you reflects lack of civility.”

    He further writes, “You claim to be a devotee of Sri Ram but your practices are opposite to his preaching and life. Your actions reflect extreme arrogance and highly bloated ego.”

    Full text of letteer:

    Dear Mr. Narendra Modi

    It is normal to address as ‘Dear’, though because of your acts of commission and omission in public life, you are not exactly dear to me. However, because I attach utmost importance to human life, and do not compare it with cat and kitten, therefore, despite being strongly opposed to your politics of hate, your life is also dear to me!

    The ideology of hate propagated by you and your party is apparent to anyone who is not blinded by hate. The intemperate language used by you reflects lack of civility.

    To serve your hidden agenda of making India a fascist state, you use the cover of Hindu religion. The ideals, values and teachings of Sri Ram do not interest you. The most cherished human values of love and sacrifice, which are integral to every religion, are alien to you.

    Have you ever thought about the following quotes?

    Ramahu kewal prem pyara, sabahi maanprad aap amani, sab nar karehi paraspar preeti....!

    It seems that you are not at all concerned with the values represented by these quotes. You claim to be a devotee of Sri Ram but your practices are opposite to his preaching and life. Your actions reflect extreme arrogance and highly bloated ego. Instead of helping forces of peace and inclusive growth for our society, your actions have caused strife and bloodshed and brought misery to the disadvantaged sections, especially Muslims affected by 2002 Gujarat riots.

    Your actions continue to increase the gulf between different sections of Indian people. You use religion to achieve power and position for your party and yourself. With the help of money and power, you buy the loyalty of the selfish people belonging to other religious denominations and make a show of it to project yourself as the leader of all people, whereas in reality you serve only your personal vested interests and those of the fascist forces.

    Faisal khan

    National Alliance of People's Movement

    Khudai Khidmatgar

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    By Shaik Zakeer Hussain,,

    Banglore: For their living, the brother duo Ali and Arif Vakil work for their family owned real estate company Vakil Housing. However, it is not their entrepreneurship that makes their story interesting, but it is their fascinating creation called Sufi Comics; a fruit borne out of their lifelong passion for comics and Islam.

    With an impressive combination of the increasingly popular medium of comics and the treasure trove of wisdom found in the Islamic traditions, the brothers have carved a niche for themselves and have set a new benchmark in this genre.

    In this Interview with TCN’S Shaik Zakeer Hussain, Ali Vakil, the younger of the two, talks about the idea behind Sufi comics and more.

    Could you tell us something about yourself and what Sufi Comics is all about?

    Our roots are from Gujarat. We grew up in Dubai, but for the last 10 years we've been in Bangalore. We used to run a mailing list prior to the blog. However, after we came to Bangalore we converted that list to a blog We used to put up comics on this blog, and realized that it's getting popular and deserves its own website, that's when we started

    If I have to describe what Sufi Comics is, then the short version would be "Comics for the soul". A slightly longer version is "They are short spiritual anecdotes from Islamic history & tradition." After every comic we've got verses of the Qur'an and traditions on the topic of the comic.

    So if my understanding is correct, through these comics, you are trying to present Islam to the world; to both Muslims and non-Muslims?

    In a way yes, but we are more focused on the spiritual values taught in Islamic teachings rather than explaining the rituals of the faith.

    Mohammed Ali Vakil (right) & Mohammed Arif Vakil at the Comic Con Express Exhibition

    And is that the reason why it is named Sufi Comics, or is there other reason for this name?

    Yes exactly, that was the reason for naming it Sufi Comics.

    Great! What made you brothers take up comics to spread Islam's spiritual teachings? Had you seen others doing this before? Where did you get your inspiration from?

    As Indians growing up in Dubai, our introduction to Indian culture came from comics like ACK (Amar Citra Katha), we also read a lot of other comics like Tin Tin, Asterix, Phantom etc. Looking back we realized that the medium of comics is very powerful, and can have a more lasting impression than just text (especially for the younger generation). These days learning has become very visual.

    Islam also has a very rich tradition of art, so we thought of using an art form to narrate these stories. In our latest book the inspiration came from Persian & Turkish miniature paintings. The Qur'an & Hadith are written by hand in Islamic Calligraphy. And no, we had not come across anyone putting these stories in comic format.

    Your latest book is on Rumi I suppose?

    Yes, in our next book we are going to illustrate the poems of Rumi.

    40 Sufi Comics

    That’s interesting. Are you brothers the only two behind these comics or do you get assistance from others? And also how do you decide which anecdote or which Hadith would go into the comic? Could you throw some light in that direction?

    The art in the second book was done by Rahil Mohsin, and the calligraphy was done by Muqtar Ahmed. The content is done by my brother and me, many of the stories we learnt when we grew up in Dubai at our Madrasah. We also read a lot and looked for stories that resonate with us. I & my brother select the Qur'an verses & Hadith.

    Talking about the art: Did you brothers go to an institute to learn how to draw comics?

    Both me & my brother are Chartered Accountants, and had no formal training in art. I got interested in art while I was reading the book "How to think like Leonardo Da Vinci". In the book it encouraged learning art 'cause it helps to improve the power of observation. I started learning from YouTube videos. I really enjoyed art, and wanted to do something useful with this skill, that's when I thought of drawing Sufi comics.

    Do you both draw and are your illustrations hand drawn or are there any special tools that you use?

    Yes, we both draw. Some of my brother's comics are available on our website The illustrations are all hand drawn. I first would do it on paper & then scan it. Later on I got a tablet pc and started drawing directly on the computer.

    The Wise Fool of Baghdad (Excerpt)

    How did you brothers market your books, apart from of course publishing these strips on your popular blog?

    We used to spread the word on Facebook, and participate at Comic Con exhibitions. These were the two primary ways. We participated at Comic Con San Diego in 2012, which is the biggest in the West. We became the first Indian publisher to participate.

    Great! How has the response to your books been so far?

    The response has been really good. We got orders from several countries including Tanzania, Pakistan, US, UK, Australia. What is very encouraging is that our comics have been translated in 9 languages. It's done by volunteers. Once the comic gets translated we put it up on our website. You can browse the languages from the top bar on

    So what's next for Sufi Comics? Do you brothers have any specific plans for it?

    Our next project is Rumi, and most of our efforts are going into that project. But we're also working on coming up with the 2nd volume of "40 Sufi Comics".


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    By TCN News,

    New Delhi: Campus Front of India today held a protest at Jantar Mantar against the liking of Gujarat communal genocide as ‘accidental puppy death’ by self-styled Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi and his insensitive and communal comments.

    Speaking at the protest Ubaidurrahhman, Delhi State President of Campus Front said, “We demand Narendra Modi to apologize for these comments. On one hand one after the other his mischieves are coming out as he was claimed to have a complicity in Gujarat Genocide (which he liked to accidental death of a puppy), his role in Ishrat Jahan’s cold blooded Murder has been exposed again and again. And on other hand he is making communal and insensitive remarks about victims of his crimes.”

    He added, “Not only this shows that Modi has scant regard for the dignity and honor of deceased people (who are dead, thanks to complicity or at the least mismanagement of Mr Modi), the Gujarat genocide were planned one, not an accident and it were given a push by biased Gujarat state machinery under self-acclaimed Back-Seater.”

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