Mumbai – Demolition of a dream house


Alok Deshpande , The Hindu, may 1,2013

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Campa Cola residents on protest against demolition notice (Source:- Facebook Community ‘Save Campa Cola Compound’)
Mumbai is rapidly becoming a place for chosen few. Chosen, on the basis of money.
The rich, famous and self-proclaimed law abiding citizens of Mumbai were first shocked and then laughed at the misery of families of 75 innocent lives that were lost in a tragic building collapse in Mumbra, near Mumbai, last month.

“How ignorant can one be? Buggers should’ve checked whether the building is authorized or not. Illiterate people, I tell you,” said one of my friends on Facebook chat. He sent laughing smiley (:D) at the end of the chat.

He perhaps didn’t know that, these slum dwellers were purposely told to move inside building, to avoid demolition from civic body. It’s a win-win situation for both builder and a slum dweller. The former gets his construction legalized on humanitarian ground and the latter gets a ‘pukka’ house.

A few weeks after the Mumbra incident, came one of the ‘never heard before’ and ‘never seen before’ housing tragedies (?) of Mumbai. (The media which is usually not bothered about the demolition drives in slums, found its ‘news peg’ among the rich and upper middle class victims of Campa Cola Compound. But that we will save for later discussion.)

Following the Supreme Court verdict, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) slapped the notice of demolition on 35 floors of seven buildings of upper middle class, upmarket locality. The demolition means that 140 families will have no roof from May 2. As you must have predicted, none of them is illiterate or ignorant or poor.

They were not given water connection for past 25 years by BMC, mainly because the structures were unauthorized and that was enough for them to know that builder has cheated on them. Yet, they continued to live in those unauthorized buildings for 25 years. Ignorant, aren’t they? My friend on Facebook, please answer.

When I went for one of the press conferences arranged by these 140 families at the Campa Cola Compound, I was (and still I am) sympathetic to them. (Yeah, despite being a reporter. I do have my opinions). Then I heard one lady shouting. “Do you think we are slum dwellers? How can they throw us out like them?”

Them, I thought. Them?

Why do you think you are different? Don’t you understand that you too were as cheated and fooled by builder as those homeless families by some other builder, when he convinced them to construct slums on open plot? Just to claim that land under Slum Rehabilitation Scheme, few years later. You both wanted a house. The only difference was your class. You managed a house on 17th floor, while the homeless managed a slum besides a dumping ground. Neither his slum’s nor your flat’s plans were approved by authorities. You are no different than him. Remember that! You are all the victims of land sharks, corrupt system and the nexus between builder-authorities and politicians.

Buying a house has become almost impossible in Mumbai, for someone from middle and lower middle class background. A 2 BHK (they don’t construct 1 BHK anymore, it seems) flat will cost you, more than a crore. You need either the money or high ranked contacts. Majority of us have neither of this. (Just some extra information from unverified sources -A woman who purchased flat in a scam tainted Adarsh CHS in Mumbai, was given a loan worth Rs 80 lakh by a respected bank. Well, her salary was less than Rs 20,000. How did she manage that? Interesting, isn’t it?)

After all everyone dreams about a house. Builders, politicians and authorities have used the situation wonderfully in their favour and have kept the housing prices away from the common man’s range. It is the desperation of people that is forcing them to live in worst of the conditions, many a time in unauthorized buildings.

Mumbai is rapidly becoming a place for chosen few. Chosen, on the basis of money.

After the incident in Mumbra, the Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) took a decision to demolish ‘dangerous’ and ‘unauthorised’ buildings. All the political parties in the state, except for Mahrashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP), called for a bandh. “It will make people homeless and they are not guilty,” they said.

You are right! But don’t you think you should have also asked for action against builders and officials who constructed these unauthorized structures? Congress, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Shiv Sena, who had supported the bandh, did not bother to utter a single word against the builders. So obliged they are to the builders, it seems, for reasons best known to them.

Mumbai’s Golibar slum redevelopment is also one of the examples of utter disrespect to law by builders. Forged documents, threats, hooliganism and even an alleged kidnapping, tells the sad story of legitimate slum dwellers here. Alleged involvement of big politicians in the redevelopment has forced ‘independent’ media houses ignore the misery of these people. Then there are examples of Sion-Koliwada redevelopment, Ganpat Patil nagar redevelopment and the list goes on. The builder lobby has gained upper hand everywhere with the help of police, politicians and officials.

So, my dear lady from ‘n’th unauthorized floor, my humble request to you is, don’t say you are different, just because you are rich. You both are the victims. Criticise the system, which has put you in this condition, not the slum dweller.

 

Teen Rapper Arrested on Terrorism Charges for Rap on Boston Marathon Bombing #WTFnews #FOE #FOS


The suburban teenager is being held on $1 million bail, and faces possibly 20 years.

May 2, 2013  |

A Massachusetts high school student faces felony charges for allegedly posting on social media rap lyrics that police say amount to terrorist threats, the Valley Patriot reports.

“He posted a threat in the form of rap where he mentioned the White House, the Boston Marathon bombing, and said ‘everybody you will see what I am going to do, kill people,” said Joe Solomon, who is police chief of Methuen, a city in north Massachusetts.

According to a press release from the Methuen Police Department, 18-year-old Cameron D’Ambrosio posted the alleged threatening rap on Facebook. Police investigated the teenager after one of D’Ambrosio’s classmates reported to Methuen High School authorities the “disturbing verbiage” on his Facebook page. The press release notes that the alleged threats “were in general and not directed towards another person or the school.”

According to the Eagle Tribune, D’Ambrosio was charged with communicating a terrorist threat and faces up to 20 years in jail. He is being held on $1 million bail. All this, for writing some scary rap lyrics on Facebook.

In addition to arresting D’Amrbosio, police searched the teenager’s home and confiscated a computer and Xbox. They searched the Facebook page for additional clues to the amateur rapper’s activities. The Valley Patriot has their findigs:

D’Ambrosio also had disturbing photos and posts on his Facebook page including  “Fuck politics, Fuck Obama and Fuck the government!!”

He also had a “disturbing satanic photo posted as well as a photo of himself on a “Wanted Poster” that reads “Wanted Dead or Alive” a quick perusal of his Facebook page shows D’Ambrosio’s unusual interest in gangs, violence and a criminal lifestyle.

The 18-year-old alleged “terrorist,” whose only crime in this case appears to be posting rap lyrics on Facebook, will be arraigned Thursday.

 

 

Kerala – Environmental Activist is labelled “anti-national and terrorist” #WTF


 ‘Industry-politician nexus is trying to eliminate us’

Author(s): M Suchitra, downtoearth
Issue Date: Apr 24, 2013

Purushan Eloor is an environmental activist and research coordinator with Periyar Malineekarana Virudha Samithy (PMVS), which has been fighting against industrial pollution in the Periyar river, the lifeline of central Kerala. The river is alarmingly polluted by about 280 chemical factories located at Eloor-Edayar industrial estate, the largest industrial cluster in the state.

Purushan was member of the Local Area Environment Committee constituted in 2004 by the Supreme Court Monitoring Committee on Hazardous Wastes, the Environment Working Group of Kerala State Planning Board and the Endosulfan Technical Cell of the Kerala government. Besides, PMVS is an accredited member of the Kerala State Biodiversity Board. But for the past one year, Purushan has been spending most of his time and energy in courts and police stations. He is facing investigations by the crime branch, special branch and the local police for “anti-national and terrorist” activities. Purushan spoke to M Suchitra about how industries and politicians conspire to eliminate environment activists in the locality and how factories continue to pollute the river with impunity. Some excerpts:

Purushan Eloor Purushan EloorWhy are police agencies investigating you and your organisation?

The state government ordered the probe. It is based on a complaint given by the Standing Council of Trade Unions to the chief minister.

What is this Standing Council of Trade Unions?

It is a confederation of prominent trade unions such as CITU, AITUC, INTUC and BMS. The patrons of the council include two state ministers. Its executive and non-executive office-bearers include influential politicians and members of Parliament and the Assembly. The council was originally formed to act as a mediator between industries and the government for the smooth functioning of factories by ensuring adequate power availability.

What are the charges against you?

Receiving huge foreign funds for derailing and destroying domestic industries, purchasing large coffee estates and resorts, uploading visuals insulting the national flag on Facebook, participating in secret camps organised by banned groups like Students Islamic Movement of India, association with those who work for terrorist groups in Pakistan and connections with Maoists.

Is there any truth in these allegations?

Each and every allegation is false and fabricated. Ours is a group of local environmental activists. Our organisation was formed more than two decades ago by the residents of Eloor and Edayar village panchayats, affected by pollution from hazardous wastes discharged by factories. We hold open meetings, agitations and campaigns against the pollution using money from our own pockets. Nothing is about us is a secret. We are ordinary people struggling for a safe environment. About 3,500 families around the industrial estate are affected by the pollution. We have been struggling for more than 20 years.

Then why does the council raise such allegations?

This is an outcome of the nexus between industries and politicians. The present investigation started early last year. First, a series of planted reports against us appeared in Big News, a publication which is not even registered. This was followed by a press conference by the Standing Council at Ernakulam Press Club. It got wide coverage in newspapers and channels. Subsequently, posters tarnishing us were put up everywhere. Then the council approached the chief minister and requested for immediate probe. They also published allegations against us in a blog called patriot.com

What is the basis of the allegation of denigrating the Tricolour on Facebook?

It is an effort to establish that I am involved in anti-national activities. For this they dragged in my friend Muhammedali, a resident of Eloor, working in Dubai. I know him from childhood. We are friends on Facebook, too. Like me, he also hails from a communist family. He was a CPI(M) member and was active in the library movement till he left for Dubai for a livelihood. The First Information Report (FIR) of the Crime Branch accuses Mohammedali of sharing visuals denigrating the national flag and spreading “I Love Pakistan” message through Facebook. The FIR also says by his close relationships with Pakistanis in UAE, he may indulge in anti-social activities. Just imagine, to trap me they tarnished an innocent person who is working far away from his home.

On Facebook have you posted or liked or shared anything against national interest?

Never. Neither he nor I posted or shared or liked anything insulting the flag or propagating anti-national feelings. Neither of us visited any Facebook page that carried the kind of things the FIR says. Interestingly, the standing council even handed over printouts of the photos allegedly posted on our Facebook to the Crime Branch.

How could they do that if you have not posted it?

They were fake.

Doesn’t it amount to cyber crime?

Yes. Mohammedali was extremely shocked. He filed a case in the Kerala High Court against the state government and the Crime Branch, praying for quashing of the false FIR against him. I have also filed a case. Besides, I lodged a complaint in the cyber crimes enquiry cell.

What was the outcome?

Whatever you do on the Facebook–posting, sharing, liking or tagging—will be recorded in its history. It is not difficult to find out whether you have committed a crime or not. After eight months of investigation, the cyber cell found that we were innocent. Since the allegations were serious I wanted to know the origin of all this. Google and VSNL informed the cyber cell that this blog was created in a computer in the office of Cochin Minerals & Rutile Limited, an industrial house producing synthetic rutile.

What does the government say now?

It ended up in an embarrassing position. A few days ago the Kerala Government submitted a statement in the High Court admitting that Mohemmadali’s Facebook did not contain any visual or post against national interest. The regional and national media gave wide coverage to this human rights violation by the government and its police.

Have you bought coffee estates and resorts?

No. But we, 11 friends, have together bought 4.29 acres (1.7 hectares) in Wayanad district. Of the 11, four are from our organisation. What I and my family have in Wayanad is only an old thatched house in a 64 cent plot. Recently, the government conducted a hunt for Maoists in Wayanad forests.

What is the plight of the Periyar now?

The river is dying. There are 15 dams upstream and 282 industries downstream. Of these, 110 are chemical industries. There are a number of scientific studies revealing the dismal plight of the river. Areas surrounding the industrial belt have become one of the toxic hot spots in the world. Most of the factories still discharge their raw hazardous effluent directly into the river. The riverbed has deposits of heavy metals like lead, cadmium, mercury, chromium, nickel, cobalt and zinc. Studies by the Cochin University of Science and Technology have revealed that the river ecosystem has many dead zones. Massive fish kills occur frequently. At times the river flows in different colours. Many species of flora and fauna have disappeared. The industrial cluster is only 20 km from the Kochi backwaters which is a part of the Vembanad Lake, a Ramsar site. All hazardous wastes finally reach the backwaters. On the one hand, water flow has significantly reduced due to dams, and on the other, contamination of water, soil and air has increased. Pollution of the river and surrounding wetlands has almost wiped out the traditional occupations, including fishing and farming.

Which are the main polluting companies?

Most of the companies contribute to toxic pollution. But there are a few companies like Hindustan Insecticides Limited (HIL), Merchem and Binani Zinc which have never bothered to abide by the laws. HIL, a Central government undertaking, has been producing insecticides including DDT and endosulfan since 1956. Production of endosulfan was stopped in 2011 after public protests and verdict from the Supreme Court. DDT is the most notorious of the 12 chlorinated chemicals identified for total elimination by the Stockholm Convention. HIL is one of the few remaining DDT producing factories in the world. Water samples from a small stream called Kuzhikkandam Thodu, where HIL discharges its effluent, have revealed presence of more than 100 organic compounds including organochlorines like DDT and its derivatives, which are classified as persistent organic pollutants (POPs). This stream joins the river.

But did the situation not change after the Supreme Court-appointed monitoring committee’s intervention?

Not much. In 2004, when the monitoring committee visited Kerala, it was shocked to see the situation here. The Hazardous Wastes Rules were notified in 1989. In 1997, the Supreme Court ordered state pollution control boards across the country to show cause as to why industries without requisite authorisation or waste treatment facilities should not be closed down. Kerala State Pollution Control Board never bothered to pay attention to the Supreme Court’s rulings and observations. The committee ordered to close down the factories which do not abide by laws. At least 100 factories would have to close down in this industrial estate. The state pleaded for time to make the factories set up adequate facilities. The monitoring committee also set up a Local Area Environment Committee (LAEC) for auditing pollution and monitoring the functioning of these 100 companies. Some of the companies sincerely tried to reduce the pollution level by setting up new facilities. LAEC was vigilant. At that time there were obvious changes in the pollution level. But many of the companies which started functioning in a better way have fallen back to their old system of discharging raw effluent directly to the river.

Why?

The main reason is inefficiency of the pollution control board. The Board is corrupt from top to bottom. It is not monitoring anything. It is not transparent and people-friendly. Besides, the board is not capable of giving suggestions and guidelines to the industries on how to reduce the pollution level. When it comes to the application of science and technology, the board is years behind. Also, there is always tremendous political pressure to turn a blind eye towards pollution. To reduce pollution we need to know the mass balance which gives you the exact picture on raw materials and amount of water used, production capacity, actual production and quantity of wastes, solid and liquid, and pollution level. In the past 40 years, mass balance has been determined for not even a single company. Then how can the pollution level be reduced?

What does the state government say about reducing pollution?

It is not interested in solving the pollution issues. In 2000, we had raised a demand for a permanent river monitoring station for assessing the pollutions levels. The state government promised us that it would set up the station within six months. Nothing has happened as yet.

Let us come back to the investigations against you. You say CMRL is behind the false charges against you. Was there any immediate provocation?

Yes. This company produces synthetic rutile. The byproducts are ferric chloride and ferrous chloride. Since ferric chloride can be used in water treatment, the company sells it outside. As for ferrous chloride, the company used to discharge it into the river. This was the reason for Periyar’s change of colour at times. When Local Area Environment Committee objected, it had even transported the effluent to neighbouring Tamil Nadu in tankers and discharged it directly into open fields. We had caught them red-handed while doing this. Three years ago, the company started a project in Sabarimala for treating water using ferrous chloride in a stream highly contaminated by E-coli. We objected to it. First, adding chemicals directly into the river or stream is against the law. More than that, the company was using ferrous chloride contaminated with heavy metals. We constituted a fact-finding team. The team found that the project was a failure. The company was using this project for publicity in media. Finally, it had to wind up the project.

You said it was the complaint given by the standing council of trade unions that led to the ongoing investigations. Does it mean that there is a huge divide within the community between factory workers and those who fight for safe environment?

We have never demanded closure of the industries. Our demand is that industries should abide by the law and stop destroying ecosystems. Workers and trade union leaders who hail from Eloor-Edayar area give us moral support. They know what we stand for. They are very well aware of the issues. Their families, too, suffer from pollution. But the real problem creators are top level trade union leaders and politicians. They instigate fear among workers about a possible closure of the industries.

Have the polluters paid any compensation?

We had demanded medical insurance cards for the residents for up to Rs 1,00,000. In the last two years of the previous government we got medical cards which allowed treatment up to Rs 35,000. Companies bore the expenses. But when the present government came to power in 2011, it stopped this scheme.

Why are only residents of Eloor-Edayar region fighting against the pollution? Residents, hotels and hospitals of the Ernakulam (Cochin) city also use the Periyar water though they get treated water. Why are they not bothered about the pollution? Why don’t they join the struggle?

We have tried our best to make them take up the issue. We have met all the residents’ associations in the city and requested them to join the struggle. But they keep away and prefer silence. There are about 280 factories and influential industrialists, politicians who get money from these industries, and there are many other interest groups. Leave city people, even organisations like Kerala Sasthra Sahitya Parishad, which is supposed to be a people’s science movement, has not taken up this issue as it should have.

Why have they targetted only you?

Not only me. They target all those who actively work against pollution. The goons of the companies will do anything. They may even kill you. Recently, Shibu Manuel, who has filed a public interest litigation in the high court for scientific cleaning of the Kuzhikkandam stream was attacked by the goons of the companies. They broke his legs and arms. He suffered serious injuries. He was actively pursuing the case. It can happen to me too. I constantly get threats on my life. The police have cautioned me to take care not to move alone. So the message is very clear: Stop your activism or be ready to die. The industry-politician nexus is trying to eliminate us.

Does all this affect your morale?

Yes, very much. It is really painful to face allegations and investigations after years of fighting for a cause. Everywhere in our country, those who engage in grassroots struggles face similar situations. At times, I have the urge to live a quiet and peaceful life. The cases and courts consume your time, energy and money. All this would divert our attention from the main issues. That’s exactly what the industry-politician nexus wants.

Interviewee:
Purushan Eloor

 

Rape Culture: 3 Reasons Most Men Are to Blame For Misogyny #Vaw


rape, culture:, 3, reasons, most, men, are, to, blame, for, misogyny, Rape Culture 3 Reasons Most Men Are to Blame For Misogyny

The discourse surrounding rape culture and the pervading attitudes of victim blaming are reaching an all-time epoch with each new shared and re-shared story on a new rape case making its rounds on social media platforms. These cases include most recently the Delhi gang rape case, the Steubenville High School football case, and the Rehtaeh Parsons story, all of which have churned our stomachs, broadened our vernacular around synonyms of “deplorable,” and made us shout “why?!”

Why indeed.

Why  we are asked in pictures and Tweets and statuses  are we centering our awareness and education on rape around “not getting raped” as opposed to “don’t rape”? It is a timely question, a highly relevant one, and in many ways the correct one, but one that is far too implicit about the root of the problem and circuitous in its blame.

Thus, I will come out and say it for you, ladies.

It’s men. We are the root of the problem and deserving of the blame.

Though I am sure there are those of us  that poor Ryan Reynolds or Ryan Gosling look-alike who must dash between campus security lights when exiting the gym in his Under Armour tank top or endure the humiliation of answering why he chose to go out in skinny jeans to a club after being sexually violated by a gang of sorority sisters, those circumstances are quite … rare.

No, it’s quite clear fellas that we are the problem. And the problem does not begin and end at rape, but extends to and permeates throughout the entire sphere of gender issues, from domestic violence to gender pay gaps. Misogyny exists because we, men, either push it or allow it.

There are three ways in which we are most culpable:

1. Most obviously, men are almost exclusively the perpetrators:

Except for a very small number of instances, it is men who are committing the most egregious gender crimes such as rape and domestic abuse, running the companies that are most flagrant in their unequal pay and opportunities, and in nearly every country creating the laws and conditions that keep women disadvantaged.

2. Men have perpetuated a culture around manhood and masculinity that is conducive to misogynist behavior:

Especially relevant to rape, we have defined manhood around sexual “conquests,” the who, how, when, and where of sexual intercourse (notice the absence of why). Our virility is becoming increasingly quantitative. This in turn has amplified the pressure on boys and men to “score,” or, in the best case scenario, lie or aggrandize about it, in order to secure their rightful place amongst the pantheon of their masculine brethren. You will find this narrative occurring in your local teenage boy’s locker room or in nearly any all-male social situation. To coincide with this, we have also effectively stigmatized active positive discourse around women’s issues  whether it is by questioning the manhood (there is that word again) of the men who do so or regarding their motives with suspicion. Apparently, it shouldn’t matter to us what women think about any of this.

3. Men’s contribution to the anti-sexual assault movement has mostly been a passive, or neutral, one:

We don’t rape, we don’t physically abuse, and we certainly didn’t ask to make more for the same work than our female co-worker. Maybe, occasionally, we’ll even do so much as “like” a comment on Facebook that supports a woman’s issue. Maybe, during our weekly poker game, when our friend belches out his newest drunken sexual experience with some “random b*tch” (of which he’s also probably bluffing about) we will merely giggle instead of guffaw. And then maybe, afterwards, we will pat ourselves on the back for not being like him. While the neutral measure is obviously necessary given the alternative, it is simply not enough. It is not effective in inducing change.

No longer can we just brush off the actions of the offending fellow male as a purely individual, psychological one (based on the notion that he must just be inherently evil and thus nothing could be done on our end anyways), or rue that biology and history conspired to create, somehow independently of us, a patriarchal, misogynist society that is so prevalent it might be fated or so powerful it can’t be changed. Men can’t just say “well that’s that,” and dust off our hands and put them back on the video game controller while our daughters, wives, sisters, mothers, and friends continue to get raped, abused, persecuted, and repressed. Humanity cannot afford this type of attitude any longer.

Which brings me to the obvious question: Well, what should and can we do that specifically targets men?

For the long term, education around gender needs to be introduced in schools at an early age and extend to the very end of compulsory schooling. Boys need to learn about gender issues around the world and why they should care, that gender roles are not predetermined and do not follow a specific narrative, and how to interact with their female counterparts as equals. Boys need to learn how to be men in the presence of women’s issues, not in the absence of them. Later, issues surrounding sex need to be incorporated, especially around the matters of what defines manhood and masculinity. Preferably, these classes would be taught by the world’s most testosterone-driven professional wrestler, just to drive the point home. But that’s merely a frill.

We also need to alter our conversation when we are around each other because our words and conversations aren’t harmless. In fact, the way in which we define ourselves as men and the accompanying roles we take on are very harmful, as they act as influencers for the type of behavior that typically surrounds misogyny.

Lastly, starting today, we need to openly and actively show that we won’t stand for rape, we don’t tolerate domestic abuse, we can’t fathom why our female colleagues are making less than us, etc. The more male faces we can add to the struggle around gender issues, the better. Social pressure needs to be applied to our male counterparts that this is far from normal and far from okay.

I hope that no one will take this simply as a manifestation of “male guilt” or me saying that men are scum. The truth is quite the opposite, as there are many, many more good men out there than bad ones. But I am claiming we are quite unaware and ignorant of our own subtle complicities and roles in regards to the culture we are very much responsible for creating and sustaining, and often do not take accountability in reigning in or stopping the most arrant of our same-sex offenders.

So take this as a call to arms, if you will. For those men who are just tired, and disgusted, and embarrassed, not just as a man but as a human being, every time you hear about another woman who has been raped, or subjugated and persecuted in some other way, know that there issomething that we can do about it.

We can begin by pointing the fingers at ourselves, and then act accordingly from there.

 

Hindu-Muslim And The Facebook War: Online Communalism #socialmedia


  • Posted on: April 29, 2013, Youth Ki Awaaz

By Nihal Parashar:

I wrote a dissertation titled ‘Building of a Communal State in a Virtual World: Hindu-Muslim relation seen through the lens of YouTube and Facebook. I was trying to interrogate the role of Social Media platforms in the ongoing ‘war’ between the fascists of the two religions. While working on the dissertation I stumbled upon various Facebook pages and YouTube videos which propagated violence. The question which comes to mind is shall we try to ban these pages? But the bigger question is how socially relevant these pages are? If there is a hate page on a certain social media platform, it simply signifies that there is hate in the society as well. The spill over of societal issues could be seen on these platforms. The Facebook pages, with numerous ‘likes’, justify that they are only tip of the iceberg. The problem lies somewhere else. This reminds me of a couplet by renowned Urdu poet Josh Malihabadi which says, ‘Zeb ye deta nahin sarkaar ko, paaliye bimaariyon ko maariye bimaar ko’ (This does not suits government when it kills the people affected with a disease but does nothing to eradicate the disease).

social media

A PHOTO SHARED BY THE PAGE ‘KARZ APNA CHUKANA HAI, BABRI MASJID WAHIN BANANA HAI’

Today I came across another such page. The title of the page is ‘Karz apna chukana hai, Babri Masjid wahin banana hai’, loosely translates in English as ‘We need to pay back by building Babri Mosque at the same place’. It was time to revisit my thesis and add few more notes.

The era in which we live is extremely complex in nature. The extraordinary problems are of varied forms which certainly requires extraordinary answers. We did not inherit a peaceful society from the previous generation. The previous generation was also not fortunate enough to inherit a perfect society from their predecessors. It is less likely that we are going to present a better society to the future generations. But this does not mean that we all must stop looking for better answers to questions of the present era.

The Communal aspect of the Social Media platforms is a result of the dissatisfaction in the society. There are few similarities in the pages which claim to represent different religions. The administrator of most of the pages lack sense of humour (they make you laugh at times although for a different reason altogether) and poses a great sense of anger. The posts are written to stimulate a feeling of hatred for the ‘other’community. They use each and every possible mythological symbol for the purpose. The admin and followers do not hesitate to turn most of the current social and political developments into an occasion to revisit the history and look for reasons to criticize the behaviour of the‘others’. They take solace in the religious past to condemn the act of others.

Apart from these, the most common similarity for such pages in India is Narendra Modi. You will find posts related to him on all the Hindutva pages as well as Islamic fascists pages, with obvious love and hate on the respective pages.

fb

SCREENSHOT FROM THE PAGE ‘INDIA IS A HINDU NATION’ WHICH IS STEREOTYPING ISLAMIC COUNTRIES THROUGH THIS IMAGE AND MANY OTHERS ON THE PAGE

The social media gives a sense of pseudo-anonymity to the person on the front end. You are hero for the moment. And fighting is an extremely honourable job, as per our social and religious norms. Are we living in 10000 B.C? What is the importance of civilization if it is not able to generate the basic understanding that fighting is not going to solve any problem. A good hearted soul said that non- violence is older than the mountains and oceans. Seems our civilization has taken wrong route and a peaceful world seems a distant dream.

Rise of communalism on different social media platforms is going to shape many young individuals, still in early teenage, that may come across certain posts which may plant the seed of prejudice in their fertile minds. The human mind is amazing, especially in the early years. It distinguishes right and wrong in a very young age and for the entire life it only justifies the decision of the tender age. It needs to be extremely elastic to revaluate its decision in a later year. If an individual has a certain point of view on a certain issue it is totally related to his personal journey. Social media may act as a tool for the same. But in no circumstance it can be the culprit.

What must be done to take care of the rise of communalism on the social media platforms? Shall we agree with an Indian minister’s idea of asking Facebook and Google to screen the content on the websites? This does not have a very simple answer as well. Like all extraordinary questions it deserves an extraordinary answer.

‘We need an inclusive society’– Is this an accepted statement? We need to answer this. If it is an accepted statement then we certainly need to look for a community of peace-builders who believe in the humanitarian values. There will be the fascist forces to ridicule this idea. But an inclusive society will also accommodate them. No, I am not talking about utopia. I am talking about my society, which rests its hope on you, O reader.

With anti-reservation, anti-women comments, candidates embarrass Loksatta- Kractivism IMPACT


loksatta

SUDIPTO MONDAL, The Hindu, April20, 2013

One candidate asked to withdraw nomination, two others reprimanded

The Loksatta Party, which is set to make its debut in the Karnataka Assembly elections promising “clean” politics, has run into trouble with three of its candidates taking positions that appear to run counter to its stated ideological vision and standpoint.

Phanisai Bhardwaj, candidate in Bangalore South, has said on his facebook page: “Apolish [abolish] reservation for particular community in education as well as jobs.” The comment was on a digitally altered photograph posted by him showing two lanes of a road. One is clogged with traffic, while the other is completely free. The empty road has one man, identified as “SC/ST” walking past stationary vehicles on the other road. The road clogged with traffic is titled “general.”

Mr. Bhardwaj is also part of a group, ‘Centre for Men’s Rights,’ which believes that men are the oppressed sex and fights against Section 498 (a) of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalises cruelty to a woman by her husband or his relatives.

Rupa Rani, candidate in Rajajinagar here, has shared a photograph titled “Save the Holy Cow” posted by her facebook friend “Saffron.” The photograph shows the seer of the Ramchandrapura Math and Sangh Parivar ideologue Raghaveshwara Bharathi petting a cow.

Meenakshi Bharath, candidate in Malleshwaram, has posted a photograph showing Muslim men showering rose petals on a troop of RSS workers clad in khaki knickers and wielding lathis. She posted Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s speech also on her facebook profile.

Party sources, who wished anonymity, said Ms. Bharath’s repeated public endorsement of leaders such as Modi caused embarrassment to the Loksatta in the past as well.

Founder Jayprakash Narayan said Mr. Bhardwaj’s position on women was “unacceptable.” He said: “He is not talking Loksatta language or ideology.” He was asked to withdraw his nomination soon after.

On Ms. Rani’s post, Mr. Narayan said there were already laws against cow slaughter across the country. “But if you are going to make anti-cow slaughter and vegetarianism cultural symbols, then it is wrong,”

On Ms. Bharath, he said: “I don’t think Mr. Modi is an untouchable. The Loksatta Party doesn’t embrace any political party or individual, nor does it see them as untouchables.”

Party spokesperson Anand Yadwad said Ms. Rani and Ms. Bharath were asked to remove the offensive posts. “We have told them that they cannot take such anti-party stand.”

Elsewhere on the blogsphere, online activists are posting and re-posting the Facebook posts of the three Loksatta candidates as part of a campaign titled “Expose Loksatta Party — Anti-Women, Anti- SC/ST, shaking hands with Hindutva forces.”

Kamayani Bali Mahabal, who started the online campaign, said: “What kind of scrutiny does the party put its candidates through?” Activist Manohar Elavarathi, who first discovered these controversial Facebook posts, said: “Progressive political movements are built from the bottom up by accounting for inequalities arising out of caste, class, gender and communalism. I don’t know how a middle-class oriented party like the Loksatta can achieve that.”

 

Margaret Thatcher dead: 10 key quotes from Glenda Jackson’s speech on the former PM #Video


10 Apr 2013 19:18

 The Labour MP ripped in to Margaret Thatcher’s record as Prime Minister during today’s Commons debate

 1. “Thatcherism wreaked the most heinous, social, economic and spiritual damage upon this country”

2. “It’s a pity she did not start building more and more social houses after she entered into the right to buy, so perhaps there would have been fewer homeless people than there were”

3. “During her era London became a city Hogarth would have recognised”

4. “We were told it was going to be called Care in the Community. What in effect it was was no care at all in the community”

5. “Everything I had been taught to regard as a vice – and I still regard them as vices – under Thatcherism was in fact a virtue”

6. “If we go back to the heyday of that era I think we will see replicated again the extraordinary human damage that we as a nation have suffered from”

7. “People knowing under those (Thatcher) years the price of everything and the value of nothing”

8. “I’m beginning to see possibly the re-emergence of that total traducing of what I regard as being the basis of the spiritual nature of this country, where we do care about society, where we do believe in communities, where we do not leave people to walk by on the other side”

9. “If we go back to the heyday of that era I think we will see replicated again the extraordinary human damage that we as a nation have suffered from”

10. “A woman (Thatcher) not on my terms”

 

Check out all the latest News, Sport & Celeb gossip at Mirror.co.uk http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/margaret-thatcher-dead-10-key-1823133#ixzz2Q8SoKyE8
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कॉमरेड शालिनी को भावभीनी श्रद्धांजलि , Tributes paid to Comrade Shalini


उनके अधूरे कार्यों और सपनों को पूरा करने का संकल्‍प लिया

shalini - shoksabha.jpg

लखनऊ, 4 अप्रैल। कॉमरेड शालिनी जैसी युवा सांस्कृतिक संगठनकर्ता के अचानक हमारे बीच से चले जाने से जो रिक्तता पैदा हुई है उसे भरना आसान नहीं होगा। उन्होंने एक साथ अनेक मोर्चों पर काम करते हुए लखनऊ ही नहीं पूरे देश में प्रगतिशील और क्रान्तिकारी साहित्य तथा संस्कृति के प्रचार-प्रसार में जो योगदान दिया वह अविस्मरणीय रहेगा।

का. शालिनी की स्मृति में आज यहाँ ‘जनचेतना’ तथा ‘राहुल फ़ाउण्डेशन’ की ओर से आयोजित श्रद्धांजलि सभा में शहर के बुद्धिजीवियों तथा नागरिकों के साथ ही दिल्ली, पंजाब, मुम्बई, इलाहाबाद, पटना, गोरखपुर सहित विभिन्न स्थानों से आये लेखकों, संस्कृतिकर्मियों, सामाजिक कार्यकर्ताओं और साहित्यप्रेमियों ने उन्हें बेहद आत्मीयता के साथ याद किया। उन्हें भावभीनी श्रद्धांजलि अर्पित करने के साथ ही सभा में उन उद्देश्यों को आगे बढ़ाने का संकल्प व्यक्त किया गया जिनके लिए शालिनी अन्तिम समय तक समर्पित रहीं।

शालिनी पिछले तीन  महीनों से पैंक्रियास के कैंसर से जूझ रही थीं और गत 29 मार्च को दिल्ली के धर्मशिला कैंसर अस्पताल में उनका निधन हो गया था। वे केवल 38 वर्ष की थीं।

राहुल फ़ाउण्‍डेशन के सचिव सत्‍यम ने कहा कि का. शालिनी का राजनीतिक-सामाजिक जीवन बीस वर्ष की उम्र में ही शुरू हो चुका था। गोरखपुर, इलाहाबाद और लखनऊ में प्रगतिशील साहित्य के प्रकाशन एवं वितरण के कामों में भागीदारी के साथ ही शालिनी जन अभियानों, आन्दोलनों, धरना-प्रदर्शनों आदि में भी बढ़-चढ़कर हिस्सा लेती रहीं। जनचेतना पुस्तक केन्द्र के साथ ही वे अन्य साथियों के साथ झोलों में किताबें और पत्रिकाएँ लेकर घर-घर और दफ़्तरों में जाती थीं, लोगों को प्रगतिशील साहित्य के बारे में बताती थीं, नये पाठक तैयार करती थीं। गोरखपुर में युवा महिला कॉमरेडों के एक कम्यून में तीन वर्षों तक रहने के दौरान शालिनी स्‍त्री मोर्चे पर, सांस्कृतिक मोर्चे पर और छात्र मोर्चे पर काम करती रहीं। एक पूरावक़्ती क्रान्तिकारी कार्यकर्ता  के रूप में काम करने का निर्णय वह 1995 में ही ले चुकी थीं।

इलाहाबाद में ‘जनचेतना’ के प्रभारी के रूप में काम करने के दौरान भी अन्य स्‍त्री कार्यकर्ताओं की टीम के साथ वे इलाहाबाद विश्वविद्यालय के छात्रों के बीच और इलाहाबाद शहर में युवाओं तथा नागरिकों के बीच विभिन्न सामाजिक-राजनीतिक गतिविध्यिों में हिस्सा लेती रहीं। इलाहाबाद के अनेक लेखक और संस्कृतिकर्मी आज भी उन्हें याद करते हैं।

पिछले लगभग एक दशक  से लखनऊ उनकी कर्मस्थली था। लखनऊ स्थित ‘जनचेतना’ के केन्द्रीय कार्यालय और पुस्तक प्रतिष्ठान का काम सँभालने के साथ ही वह ‘परिकल्पना,’ ‘राहुल फ़ाउण्डेशन’ और ‘अनुराग ट्रस्ट’ के प्रकाशन सम्बन्धी कामों में भी हाथ बँटाती रहीं। ‘अनुराग ट्रस्ट’ के मुख्यालय की गतिविधियों, पुस्तकालय, वाचनालय, बाल कार्यशालाएँ आदि की ज़िम्मेदारी उठाने के साथ ही कॉ. शालिनी ने ट्रस्ट की वयोवृद्ध मुख्य न्यासी दिवंगत कॉ. कमला पाण्डेय की जिस लगन और लगाव के साथ सेवा और देखभाल की, वह कोई सच्चा सेवाभावी कम्युनिस्ट ही कर सकता था। 2011 में ‘अरविन्द स्मृति न्यास’ का केन्द्रीय पुस्तकालय लखनऊ में तैयार करने का जब निर्णय लिया गया तो उसकी व्यवस्था की भी मुख्य जिम्मेदारी शालिनी ने ही उठायी। वह ‘जनचेतना’ पुस्तक प्रतिष्ठान की सोसायटी की अध्यक्ष, ‘अनुराग ट्रस्ट’ के न्यासी मण्डल की सदस्य, ‘राहुल फ़ाउण्डेशन’ की कार्यकारिणी सदस्य और परिकल्पना प्रकाशन की निदेशक थीं। ग़ौरतलब है कि इतनी सारी विभागीय ज़िम्मेदारियों के साथ ही शालिनी आम राजनीतिक प्रचार और आन्दोलनात्मक सरगर्मियों में भी यथासम्भव हिस्सा लेती रहती थीं। बीच-बीच में वह लखनऊ की ग़रीब बस्तियों में बच्चों को पढ़ाने भी जाती थीं। लखनऊ के हज़रतगंज में रोज़ शाम को लगने वाले जनचेतना के स्‍टॉल पर पिछले कई वर्षों से सबसे ज़्यादा शालिनी ही खड़ी होती थीं।

कवयित्री कात्यायनी ने उन्हें बेहद हार्दिकता से याद करते हुए कहा कि हर पल मौत से जूझते हुए शालिनी हमें सिखा गयी कि असली इंसान की तरह जीना क्या होता है। आख़िरी दिनों तक शालिनी अपनी ज़िम्मेदारियों और राजनीतिक-सामाजिक गतिविधियों के बारे में ही सोचती रहती थीं। अक्सर फोन पर वे साथियों को कुछ न कुछ जानकारी या सलाह दिया करती थीं। शुरू से ही उन्हें अपने से कई गुना ज़्यादा दूसरों का ख़्याल रहता था। उन्हें मालूम था कि मौत दहलीज़ के पार खड़ी है मगर मौत का भय या निराशा उन्हें छू तक नहीं गयी थी। स्वस्थ होकर ज़िम्मेदारियों के मोर्चे पर वापस लौटने में उनका विश्वास और इसे लेकर उनका उत्साह हममें भी आशा का संचार करता था।

कॉ. शालिनी एक कर्मठ, युवा कम्युनिस्ट संगठनकर्ता थीं। आज के दौर में बहुत से लोगों की आस्‍थाएं खंडित हो रही हैं, लोग तरह-तरह के समझौते कर रहे हैं, बुर्जुआ संस्‍कृति का हमला युवा कार्यकर्ताओं के एक अच्‍छे-खासे हिस्‍से को कमज़ोर कर रहा है, मगर शालिनी इन सबसे रत्तीभर भी प्रभावित हुए बिना अपनी राह चलती रहीं। एक बार जीवन लक्ष्य तय करने के बाद पीछे मुड़कर उन्होंने कभी कोई समझौता नहीं किया। उसूलों की ख़ातिर पारिवारिक और सम्‍पत्ति-सम्‍बन्‍धों से  पूर्ण विच्छेद कर लेने में भी शालिनी ने देरी नहीं की। एक सूदख़ोर व्यापारी और भूस्वामी परिवार की पृष्ठभूमि से आकर, शालिनी ने जिस दृढ़ता के साथ पुराने मूल्‍यों को छोड़ा और जिस निष्कपटता के साथ कम्युनिस्ट जीवन-मूल्यों को अपनाया, वह आज जैसे समय में दुर्लभ है और अनुकरणीय भी।

अनुराग ट्रस्‍ट के अध्‍यक्ष और चित्रकार रामबाबू, आह्वान के सम्‍पादक अभिनव सिन्‍हा, आख़ि‍री दिनों में शालिनी के साथ रहीं उनकी दोस्‍त और कॉमरेड कविता और शाकम्‍भरी, जनचेतना की गीतिका, लेखिका सुशीला पुरी, नम्रता सचान, आरडीएसओ के ए.एम. रिज़वी आदि ने शालिनी के व्‍यक्तित्‍व के अलग-अलग पहलुओं को याद किया।

भारतीय महिला फेडरेशन  की आशा मिश्रा ने कहा कि शालिनी जिन मूल्यों और जिस विचारधारा के लिए लड़ती रहीं, आखिरी सांस तक उस पर डटी रहीं। छोटी उम्र में जितनी वैचारिक समझदारी, कामों के प्रति गहरी निष्ठा शालिनी में दिखती थी, इसके उदाहरण कम ही देखने को मिलते हैं।

देश के अलग-अलग हिस्सों  से बुद्धिजीवियों, साहित्यकारों, एक्टिविस्टों द्वारा भेजे गये कुछ चुनिन्‍दा शोक-संदेशों को उनके आग्रह पर उनकी ओर से पढ़ा गया। एकीकृत नेपाल कम्युनिस्ट पार्टी (माओवादी) के सांस्‍कृतिक प्रभाग के प्रमुख निनु चपागाईं ने कहा कि उनकी पार्टी के सांस्कृतिक कार्यकर्ता जनचेतना, अनुराग ट्रस्ट और राहुल फ़ाउण्डेशन के साथ एकजुटता व्यक्त करते हैं ताकि वे कामरेड शालिनी के अनेक दायित्वों को पूरा कर सकें। उन असंख्य लोगों के ज़रिए जिनके लिए उन्होंने क्रान्तिकारी साहित्य उपलब्ध तथा कराया तथा सांस्कृतिक संघर्ष के अनेक मोर्चों पर उनके कार्यों से आने वाले अनेक वर्षों तक परिणाम मिलते रहेंगे। ‘पहल’ के सम्‍पादक ज्ञानरंजन ने कहा कि हमारे सारे वैचारिक मोर्चों पर काम करते हुए शालिनी ने जो बलिदान दिया वो अपने आप में एक मिसाल है। इतने कठिन समय में ऐसा कोई और उदाहरण हमारे सामने नहीं है। साहित्‍यकार शिवमूर्ति ने अपने संदेश में कहा कि कामरेड शालिनी का निधन संघर्षशील आम जन के लिए एक अपूरणीय क्षति है। एक लम्बे समय से मैं उनके व्यक्तित्व के विभिन्न कोणों से परिचित था। उनकी मृत्यु पूर्व लिखी गयी लम्बी कविता ‘मेरी आखिरी इच्छा’ पढ़ने से उनके निडर और क्रान्तिकारी विचारों और दृढ़ इच्छाशक्ति का पता चलता है।

पी.यू.सी.एल. की कविता श्रीवास्तव ने शालिनी, उनके कार्यों, उनके लेखन, उनके विचार और उनके साहस को क्रान्तिकारी सलाम करते हुए कहा कि शालिनी का ब्‍लॉग मेरे जीवन में हुई कुछ सबसे अच्छी बातों में से एक है। वरिष्‍ठ लेखक-पत्रकार अजय सिंह ने कहा कि मेरे लिए शालिनी और लखनऊ में हज़रतगंज के गलियारे जनचेतना पुस्तक स्‍टॉल जैसे एक-दूसरे के पर्याय बन गये थे। शालिनी हमेशा हल्की व दोस्ताना मुस्कान से स्वागत करतीं, और नयी-पुरानी किताबों व पत्रिकाओं के बारे में बताती थीं। स्टूल पर सीधी, तनी हुई बैठी शालिनी की मुद्रा मेरे ज़ेहन में अंकित है। प्रगतिशील वसुधा के सम्‍पादक राजेन्‍द्र शर्मा ने अपने सन्‍देश में कहा कि कामरेड शालिनी ने एक साथ कई मोर्चों पर जूझते हुए जनसंघर्ष की एक व्यापक परिभाषा गढ़ी थी। उन जैसी ईमानदार साथी का इतना आकस्मिक निधन स्तब्धकारी दुर्घटना है। हमारी कतारों से एक उज्ज्वल ध्रुवतारा अस्त हो गया।

कवि नरेश सक्सेना, मलय, विजेन्‍द्र, नरेश चन्द्रकर, कपिलेश भोज, लेखक सुभाष गाताड़े, डा. आनन्द तेलतुम्बडे, चन्‍द्रेश्‍वर, वीरेन्‍द्र यादव, मदनमोहन, भगवानस्‍वरूप कटियार, प्रताप दीक्षित, शालिनी माथुर, शकील सिद्दीकी, गिरीशचन्‍द्र श्रीवास्‍तव, अजित पुष्‍कल, फिल्‍मकार फ़ैज़ा अहमद ख़ान, उद्भावना के सम्‍पादक अजेय कुमार, बया के सम्‍पादक गौरीनाथ, सबलोग के सम्‍पादक किशन कालजयी, समयान्‍तर के सम्‍पादक पंकज बिष्‍ट, जनपथ के सम्‍पादक ओमप्रकाश मिश्र, प्रो. चमनलाल, पत्रकार जावेद नकवी, दिव्‍या आर्य, डा. सदानन्‍द शाही, शम्‍सुल इस्‍लाम, मुम्‍बई के हर्ष ठाकौर, लोकायत, पुणे के नीरज जैन, सीसीआई की ओर से पार्थ सरकार, जन संस्‍कृति मंच के महासचिव प्रणय कृष्‍ण, जलेस के प्रमोद कुमार, सामाजिक कार्यकर्ता अशोक चौधरी, वी.आर. रमण, डा. मीना काला, मोहिनी मांगलिक, हरगोपाल सिंह, नाट्यकर्मी  राजेश, डा.  साधना  गुप्‍ता सहित अनेक व्‍यक्तियों ने का. शालिनी के लिए अपने शोक-संदेशों में कहा कि उन्होंने तमाम कठिनाइयों से लड़ते हुए जिस तरह जीने की जद्दोजहद जारी रखी वह सभी नौजवानों और खासकर उन स्त्रियों के लिए एक मूल्यवान शिक्षा है जो इस देश को बेड़ियों से आज़ाद कराने का लक्ष्य लेकर चल रहे हैं। क्रान्तिकारी आन्दोलन की दशा को ध्यान में रखते हुए, उनकी कमी को पूरा करना आसान नहीं होगा।

इस अवसर पर शालिनी के अन्तिम अवशेषों  की मिट्टी पर उनकी स्मृति में  एक पौधा लगाया गया।

सधन्यवाद,

(रामबाबू)

कृते, जनचेतना तथा अनुराग ट्रस्‍ट

(सत्‍यम)

कृते, राहुल फाउण्‍डेशन

फोनः 0522-2786782 / 8853093555 / 8960022288 / 9910462009

shalini - shoksabha1.jpg

 

Madhu Kishwar to script Ashutosh Gowariker’s next


mkishwar

April3, 2013,

Ashuthosh Gowarikar today chose an unlikely scriptwriter for his next film. The writer is none other than Madhu Kishwar whose name got viral due to her Modinama series. The details about the film are not yet known.

Madhu Kishwar, whose archaeological and paleontological evidence suggests her existence as a feminist, is reported to have impressed Gowarikar with her writing skills.  Gowarikar who is known for his tele serial like and never ending films hopes to end the financial draught his films experienced in the box office by partnering with Kishwar. He told us

” She is fantabulous! Look at the way she brings characters in her Modinama series. Who else can white wash a person (Modi) as beautifully as she does. She has perfectly forgotten that people have common sense, this is exactly the kind of the person we want in Bollywood.  Look at her characterization of people and the way she fits them to into the story, this is what we did in historical cinema like Jodha Akbar. She belongs to the same school of thought to where I belong. Nobody can last long till my movie is over, same with her articles too.”

He became further eloquent talking about her imagination

“The way she make conspiracy theories can even make Subramanian Swamy shame.  Look, she calls Togadia a congress agent, I don’t think even if one consume all the weed in the world, he will be able to think as great as her”

Madhu Kishwar agreed to the offer as the film doesn’t have any ‘ism’ in the title and it doesn’t have any left liberal mousetraps. Bollywood hopes the film will be a hit as Kishwar has got the perfect mix of misogynism and retrogressiveness recently. There have been unconfirmed reports that Ekta Kapoor wants to  televisionise Modinama and she is in discussion with Kishwar about adding a mother in law in to the plot to complete the masala.

Source- http://www.naklileaks.com

 

FB’s confession pages become a headache for colleges and cops


Two days after the Fort-based Government Dental College approached the cops against an anonymously uploaded Facebook page, the Cyber Crime Cell said on Saturday that it receives at least three such complaints every day

Jyoti.Shelar @timesgroup.com , Mumbai Mirror

TwodaysaftertheGovernment Dental College (GDC) dean filed a police complaint regarding an anonymously uploaded Facebook page, ‘GDC Mumbai Confessions’, that contained obscene comments on female students and criticism of the teachers, the Cyber Crime Cell said on Saturday that at least five more colleges have been at the receiving end of abusive online ‘confessions’.
The college ‘confessions pages’ have become a raging trend online over the past three months, and the anonymous revelations discuss substance abuse, love affairs on the campuses, disinterest in academics, difficultyinapproachingtheoppositesex andderogatoryremarksontheteachers and the college management.
Mumbai Mirror had reported on Saturday the complaint filed by Dr Mansing Pawar, dean of the Fortbased Government Dental College (Abusive,sexistFBpageondentalcollege leads to police complaint).
While the page largely contained obscene comments on the female students, it also made fun of some of theteachersandthedeanaswell.One comment mentioned how a particular teacher couldn’t speak English, while another post said the dean was only interested in installing tiles on the campus and ignored problems such as staff shortage.
In a first-ever crackdown on the abusive confession pages, the Cyber Crime Cell issued notices to the administrators of confession pages of five colleges over the past week, asking them to remove the objectionable content. Sources said the confession pages of Mulund-based Holy Angels High School and Junior College, and Jai Hind College, Churchgate were amongst those that are being monitored by the cops.
Senior Inspector Nandkishore More from the Cyber Crime Cell said, “We have been getting at least three complaints daily against these confession pages for the past several months. The local police stations are flooded with complaints as well. Notices have been sent to five administrators.”
Moresaidtheadministratorswere beingpulledupfornotbeingvigilant. “The investigations have revealed that each post is uploaded through a particular link generated on the page. Each confession has to be approved by the administrator/moderator before it goes online. It is the administrators’jobtoensuredefamatorycontent doesn’t get uploaded,” he said.
While the cops said no abusive content will be allowed on the confession pages, the concept has divided the netizens and experts in human behaviour.
Psychiatrist Dr Harish Shetty said suchforums,whicharesoeasytomisuse,candamagethesociety.“Itcanbe a torture for those named, especially women who are easy targets on such forums,” he said.
Dr Akash Akinwar, a gum surgeon from Government Dental College, who was maligned on the ‘GDC MumbaiConfessions’page,calledfor aban on anonymous posts. “Nobody has the right to insult or abuse anyone,” he said.
On the other hand, Sonali Patankar from Responsible Netism, a movement initiated by Ahaan Foundation, said banning confession pages would ‘never work’. She said, “Banning such pages will give rise to other platforms.However,peoplecertainly need to know the consequences of irresponsible online behaviour.”
Rupa Roy, principal of a wellknown school in central Mumbai, said confession pages should be supervised better instead of being banned.
She said, “My school has a confession page which my colleagues and I scan through regularly. In fact, one of the teachers is also on the group. The aim is to maintain a page that is funny, but not derogatory or abusive.” WHAT ARE COLLEGE ‘CONFESSION’ PAGES 
Confessional pages have become a trend on Facebook and other social network sites. Most colleges have confession pages that are administered by students themselves. Normally, Facebook requires users to provide their names or handles, but a confession may be posted anonymously and only the administrator of the page will know the identity of the person uploading the post.
Besides the common problems faced by the students, confession pages talk about substance abuse, disinterest in academics, placements, and difficulty in approaching the opposite sex. Often, the ‘confessions’ brag about love affairs or indulge in abusing women students and teachers.THE CONFESSIONS 
Indian Education Society ‘Confessions’
#379: Bhai style marnaa band kar! tu hero nahi hai! and nobody even luks at you! tujhe lagta hai all girls look at you only kya re! u dnt look gud! thank god that pretty girl left you! hope u get who i am tlkng abt!
Balmohan Vidyamandit (BMVM) ‘Confessions’
#78: Our School Wastes Paper By Making Sooo Many Notices Telling To Save Water This Year..! 😐 :\
Jai Hind College Confessions #825: Roll no[xx] of fybfm i love you:* I WOULD LIKE TO TAKE YOU ON A DATE

Confession pages of two city based colleges that have come up on the cops’ radar

 

 

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