Tag Archives: Raj Thackeray

An open letter to Uddhav Thackeray – By Rajdeep Sardesai

Dear Udhavjee,

At the very outset, my compliments for the manner in which you’ve literally ‘stolen’ the headlines from your cousin Raj in the last fortnight. After the Assembly election defeat last October, there were many who had written you off as a weak, namby-pamby politician, who would be better off doing photography. But now, it seems that the ‘fire’ which burns inside Bal Thackeray is alive in the son too. After years of struggling to establish yourself, you have finally discovered the mantra for success as a Shiv Sena leader: find an ‘enemy’, threaten and intimidate them, commit the odd violent act, and, eureka!, you are anointed the true heir to the original ‘T’ company supremo.

 Your cousin has chosen to bash faceless taxi drivers and students from North India, soft targets who are totally unprotected. You’ve been much braver. You’ve actually chosen to target national icons: Sachin Tendulkar, Mukesh Ambani, Shah Rukh Khan, powerful figures who most Indians venerate. Shah Rukh is no surprise since the Sena has always been uncomfortable with the Indian Muslim identity. Forty years ago, your father had questioned Dilip Kumar’s patriotism for accepting an award from the Pakistani government. You’ve called Shah Rukh a traitor for wishing to choose Pakistani cricketers in the IPL. That your father invited Javed Miandad, the former Pakistani captain and a close relation of Dawood Ibrahim, to your house is a matter of record that we shall not go into today.

 I am a little surprised that you chose to question Ambani and Tendulkar though. The Sena has always enjoyed an excellent relationship with corporate India. Why then criticise India’s biggest businessman for suggesting that Mumbai belongs to all? After all, no one can deny that Mumbai’s entrepreneurial energy has been driven by communities from across India. The diatribe against Sachin is even more strange. He is, alongwith Lata Mangeshkar, Maharashtra’s most admired and recognised face. Surely, you will agree that Sachin symbolizes Maharashtrian pride in a manner that renaming shops and streets in Marathi never can.

Of course, in-between some of your local thugs also attacked the IBN Lokmat office. I must confess that initially the attack did leave me outraged. Why would a political outfit that claims to protect Maharashtrian culture attack a leading Marathi news channel? But on reflection I realized that we hadn’t been singled out: over the last four decades, the Shiv Sena has targeted some of Maharashtra’s finest literary figures and journalistic institutions. That you continue to live in a colony of artists while attacking artistic freedom remains one of the many tragic ironies in the evolution of the Sena.

Just before the Assembly elections, you had told me in an interview that you were determined to shake off the Shiv Sena’s legacy of violence. You spoke of the need for welfarist politics, of how you were saddened that rural Maharashtra was being left behind. I was impressed by the farmer rallies you had organized, by the fact that you had documented farmer suicides in the state. I thought that Uddhav Thackeray was serious about effecting a change in Maharashtra’s political landscape.

I was obviously mistaken. Farmer suicides still continue, the after-effects of drought are still being faced in several districts, but the focus is now squarely on finding high profile hate figures. You claim to have a vision for Mumbai. Yet, on the day the Sena-controlled city’s municipal corporation’s annual budget revealed an alarming financial crisis, your party mouthpiece, Saamna, was running banner headlines seeking an apology from Shah Rukh Khan. You asked your Shiv Sainiks to agitate against Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Mumbai, but why have you not asked them to wage a war against the water cuts that have made life so difficult for millions in the city? At one level, I can understand the reasons for your frustration. The Congress-NCP government in the state has been thoroughly incompetent: the last decade has seen Maharashtra decline on most social and economic parameters. Yet, the Shiv Sena has been unable to capture power in the state. Your war with cousin Raj has proved to be self-destructive. The Assembly election results showed that a united Sena may have offered a real challenge to the ruling alliance. In fact, the Sena and the MNS together garnered around 43 per cent of the popular vote in Mumbai-Thane, almost seven per cent more than what was obtained by the Congress-NCP combine. Yet, because your vote was split, you won just nine of the 60 seats in the region, a result which proved decisive in the overall state tally.

Your defeat seems to have convinced you that the only way forward is to outdo your cousin in parochial politics. It’s a strategy which has undoubtedly made you a headline-grabber once again. Unfortunately, television rating points don’t get you votes or goodwill. There is space in Maharashtra’s politics for a regional force, but it needs to be based on a constructive, inclusive identity.

 Tragically, the Shiv Sena has never offered a serious social or economic agenda for the future. Setting up the odd wada pav stall in Mumbai is hardly a recipe for addressing the job crisis . Why hasn’t the Sena, for example, started training projects to make Maharashtrian youth face upto the challenges of a competitive job market? Why doesn’t the Sena give regional culture a boost by supporting Marathi theatre, literature or cinema? The wonderful Marathi film, “Harishchandrachee Factory”, nominated for the Oscars, has been co-produced by Ronnie Screwvala, a Parsi, who like millions of other ‘outsiders’ has made Mumbai his home. Maybe, I ask for too much. Tigers, used to bullying others for years, will never change their stripes.

Post-script: Your charming son, Aditya, who is studying English Literature in St Xaviers College, had sent me a collection of his poems. I was most impressed with his writing skills. Let’s hope the next generation of the T company will finally realize that there is more to life than rabble-rousing!

Jai Hind, Jai Maharashtra!

About Rajdeep Sardesai

Rajdeep Sardesai comes with 20 years of journalistic experience during which he has covered the biggest political stories in India. Prior to setting up his own channels, he was the Managing Editor of both NDTV 24X7 and NDTV India and was responsible for overseeing the news policy for both the channels. He has also worked with The Times of India for over five years and was the city editor of its Mumbai edition at the age of 26. During the last 20 years, he has covered major national and international stories, specialising in national politics. He has won numerous other awards for journalistic excellence, including the prestigious Padma Shri for journalism in 2008, the International Broadcasters Award for coverage of the 2002 Gujarat riots and the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award for 2007. He has won the Asian Television Award for talk show presentation and has been News Anchor of the year at the Indian Television Academy for six of the last seven years. He is presently the President of the Editors Guild of India. He has done his Masters and LLB from Oxford University and has also played cricket for the Oxford University team.

The original letter can be found here

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under MNS, Raj Thackeray, Shiv Sena, Uddhav Thackeray

Images – Peace Rally Mumbai [Must See]

[splashcast c ARDE1277KU]

 

2 Comments

Filed under Delhi, India, Media, Mumbai, News, Politics

An article worth reading….by Neh

Author: Neh

Don’t blame Pakistan or the terrorist. They had the courage and pride to inflict damage to a country they believe is there enemy. We have to blame so called Indians like the Thackeray’s and the people who follow them (Marathi Manoos) who are making our society weak. These people unlike the rest of India have never had to struggle and have lived off the wealth created by outsiders. They have negligible contribution towards the growth of Mumbai which was created by outsiders who believed in national pride, hope, hard work and continuous struggle for progress. Mumbai was created by British, Gujaratis, Marwadis, Parsis and companies like TATA’s whose wealth came from their flagship company “Tata Steel” in Bihar. In fact most of these people don’t know or care about Indian History, have never stepped outside Maharastra and are not aware that Mumbai wasn’t even a part of Maharashtra. It was part of Gujarat before and the population of marathis in Mumbai was negligible before independence (http://www.mumbaispace.com/cityinfo/history.htm).

Lack of enterprise, ethics, courage and hard work has resulted in a society which demonstrates incompetence in every area and has the potential to adversely effect the Nations growth and prosperity. Some of these examples amply demonstrate this:-

1.) WEAK & CORRUPT POLICE:- 14 maharastrian policeman died without killing a single terrorist !!! This is because it is more of political force then a law enforcer. Why do they have fancy names likes ATS when they can’t protect themselves, leave alone protecting others, thier jeeps get hijacked by terrorist!! In fact at CST when a brave photographer (Anil Singh – who shot the photographs of the terrorists) informed armed policemen about the terrorists , they ran away. Inspite of all this we make these people National heroes and people like Sharmila the wife of Raj Thackeray sends SMSs glamorizing the non existent contribution of marathis in saving the city by stating that all policemen killed in Mumbai were Marathis.
2) WEAK & CORRUPT POLITICIANS:- Pratibha patil – our president Mrs. Pratibha Patil – the cosmetic head of state? So much has happened. Mumbai and India was attacked and at war and Mrs. Patil was not to be seen anywhere? Why? Shivraj Patil – The worst home minister ever seen , he was more bothered about his dressing then the terrorist attacks on India. RR Patil – Mr Patil spoke and behaved as if he was featuring in a pulp Bollywood movie, during the 60-hour-long terror attack and its aftermath, with irresponsible sound-bytes serving as dialogues,” Clown, what happened to your statement “goli ka jawab goli se doongi”? Vilasrao Deshmukh , and the list goes on
3) LACK OF ENTERPRISE:- Inspite of all the opputunities available you sont have a single Industralist from the state who has been able to create jobs at a mass level. There are many parts in Maharastra where shop keepers close from 12 noon to 4 in the evening and treat customers as if they are doing a favour by selling to them, when outsiders are more successful in competing with these incapable people they are beaten up. In most organisations in Maharastra the most incompetent people are generally the Marathi Manoos who were hired because they were easily available and are able to retain there jobs because of the support from local politicians.

This is not a simple problem. A weak society influenced by paranoid cowards, completely detached from reality, confused and megalomaniacs like Raj Thackeray has the potential to completely destroy the country to take india to fragmented pre-1947 india , which was a period of intense repression from foreign forces where we saw large scale genocides, large scale destruction of hindu temples and blatant conversion of temples into mosques.

5 Comments

Filed under Delhi, India, Media, MNS, Mumbai, News, Politics, Raj Thackrey

How Low Can Raj Thackeray Go

Sharmila Thackeray , Wife of Raj Thackeray is busy forwarding an SMS these days. It reads like this:

“All those who had lost their lives while saving this city are Marathis. MNS workers are busy donating blood, helping police for rescue operations and lifting bodies.”

Pathetic.

Shame on all those who call Raj Thackeray a Leader.

Click here to read original post

40 Comments

Filed under Delhi, Media, Mumbai, News, Politics, Raj Thackrey

The cost of life…[Mumbai Attacks]

“Terrorists take over Mumbai” “Attacks in Mumbai” – Breaking news headlines flaring throughout the day.

Aww… tell me something new. We all got used to this. The common man is going to wake up and go to work the next day as if nothing happened.

But then something caught my eye, as I fleeted through the news. These guys attacked Taj & Oberoi hotels, and were asking for folks with American and British passports.

Now that’s something different. These guys finally found a way to get to the media, so much so that CNN & MSNBC have decided to stop guessing about Obama’s next man in the transition cabinet. Imagine pictures of Hemant Karkare, Vijay Salaskar, & Ashok Kamte (the men from the Indian Anti-terrorist Squad, who lost their lives in this attack) being flashed across American channels.

That is media attention.  And how did these terrorist manage to get that – simple, Stop focusing on cheap Indian lives.

I bet this is going to get much more attention than the serial blasts that happened over the last 6 months.

Jaipur, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Delhi, Guwahati – These are not the list of developing Indian cities. This is just the list of cities which saw serial blasts rip through their busiest areas killing the common Indian man – bad strategy I would say. Com’on who cares for a cheap Indian life?

(A, B, D, G, H, J… see, these poor guys missed out a city that starts with C, then E, F… )

Awww… and after this, I loved the way, our ‘honorable’ politicians, dressed for the cameras, came out and said –

“This is a tragic moment for our Nation. My prayers go out to the people who have been injured and killed. We shall initiate a CBI inquiry into these attacks and the intelligence failure. The govt. will provide 5 lakh rupees to the next of kin of the deceased”

Did you happen to notice the cream colored bandhgala, and the green one a few minutes later, which the home minister, Shivraj Patil wore for the press briefing? And yeah… 5,00,000 rupees for one Indian life – see, that was indeed cheap. Who cares?

And now, the creative terrorist has done something different. Why focus on those many cheap Indian lives, when few Americans and Britons can give a better coverage? Paradigm shift, Hmmm. The news also said that around 100 people lost their lives in this attack. Now that is like collateral damage. Com’on, They will anyway get 5,00,000 rupees. Don’t worry about that.

Shocking, gruesome, horrible, carnage, massacre – these are few of the adjectives used to describe the event. Analysts are surprised at the incredible planning.

I am surprised; They don’t get the basic fact – This happened in India.

 What does the Indian government do after each terror attack? Vote bank politics take over, with an eye on the next general elections. The victims and perpetrators of terror are classified based on religion, race, and ethnicity. Statements are issued accordingly. The motive – get the maximum number of votes. It is important that the future is secure – the future of the politician, the minister, the government.

After all, who cares for a few hundred cheap lives in a billion plus population with a birth rate of 22 per 1000? And yes, the common man – who cares? He is going to pay the taxes to sustain the privileges of the bureaucracy. He is going to go back to work the next day, irrespective of what happened.

Sad and depressing – that is the truth. The life of a common Indian man is cheap and dispensable. It is not me, but the politicians and government who say so…

Last heard:

Shivraj Patil – “Damn those guys, why did they have to ask for British and American passports? Now that America is watching, I need a new Armani.”

Manmohan Singh – “Thank goodness, they didn’t ask for Italian passports. Madam will be happy. Now what do I wear, blue turban, green turban, or… black, that will go well with the black suit”

LK Advani – “yaaaaay… now let them talk about Hindu terrorists. Hello… CNN … I am giving a press briefing”

RR Patil – “Female reporters at my press briefing should be wearing sarees only. Indian culture…”

Raj Thackeray – “First we have to find out if these terrorists were originally from UP and Bihar”

(This post can also be viewed at http://ns360.wordpress.com)

3 Comments

Filed under Delhi, India, Media, Mumbai, News, Politics, Uncategorized

Locals hold 90% jobs in Maharashtra

According to the Maharashtra government’s own records, there are about 1.6 lakh units across micro, small and medium industries which together employ 10.86 lakh people. Of these, 91% of the non-supervisory jobs and 97% of the supervisory posts are held by locals.

Atleast this data should be enough for Raj Thackeray and his “Gang” members to drop their bogus claims that north indians are taking jobs away from Marathi Manoos.

2 Comments

Filed under Bihar, Delhi, India, Indian Politics, Maharashtra, MNS, Mumbai, News, Raj Thackrey, Uncategorized

The Crisis of Identity continues…

I will take a step back to do some thinking on the “Sons of the Soil” concept.

AD 1947 – The great Indian nation stretching from the Karakoram ranges to the Arakan Yoma ranges was being divided. Religion formed the major criteria for partition – Hindu or Muslim. Muslims in the sub-continent had acquired an identity – being a Pakistani, which was different from being one amongst the few million Indians.

AD 1952 to AD 1961 – Potti Sriramulu dies in a hunger strike. He wanted a separate state for the Telugu speaking community, free from Tamil hegemony. Nehru assures of separate statehood. The Indian nation is divided into states based on Language. Every Indian had one more criteria to identify oneself with –Language.

AD 1979 – A commission headed under Parliamentarian Bindheshwari Prasad Mandal was established to identify the socially and educationally backward, and finally ends up suggesting affirmative action practice under Indian constitution to backward communities. Mandal Commision ends up giving us one more characteristic to identify ourselves – Caste.

One should not forget that we are already born with 2 characteristics the whole world recognizes – Color and Sex.

Nature divided us on the basis of sex; the world divided itself based on race, and color. We then divided ourselves on the basis of religion, language and now caste. How further can I go, to identify myself uniquely?

But hey… as I ask myself this question, one cranky guy has opened up a can of worms – Son of the Soil.

Now what is that? How do I identify myself with a particular soil?

I just reached a point of frustration.

Can’t I just lead my own life? Can’t every common man live a life without being bothered to prove his identity & his loyalties?

Why do you need to classify me as a Southie or Northie? Why do I need to identify my loyalties to a particular state, a Bihar or a Maharashtra?

Is it hard being just an INDIAN?

Contributor – Narayan (This post can also be viewed in ns360.wordpress.com)

Leave a comment

Filed under Bihar, Delhi, India, Maharashtra, MNS, Mumbai, News, Politics, Raj Thackrey, Uncategorized