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Another Indian Scholar Murdered by Fanatics
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: September 01, 2015 01:22AM

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http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-34105187

Who killed Dr Malleshappa Kalburgi?

So who killed Malleshappa Kalburgi, a leading Indian scholar and a well-known rationalist thinker?

Police say they are still investigating the motive for Sunday morning's killing. Two men arrived by motorcycle at the scholar's home in Dharwad in Karnataka state. One knocked on his door, entered the house claiming to be Dr Kalburgi's student, had a brief conversation with the teacher - then shot him dead and escaped on the waiting bike.

The death of a "straight-talking, rationalist researcher of ancient Kannada literature", as a newspaper described him, has shocked the nation. Police are exploring whether the killing is linked to last year's remarks by Dr Kalburgi against idol worship, which had angered right-wing Hindu groups.

The former university vice-chancellor had been given police protection after Hindu hardliners protested against his comments. Some of these groups actually celebrated the professor's killing on social media yesterday.

Many believe Dr Kalburgi made many enemies within his own Lingayat community - an influential Hindu sect that dominates life and politics in Karnataka - with his outspoken remarks about its traditional beliefs and practices.

Lingayatas, a middle caste, comprise 12-14% of Karnataka's population, and dominate politics in the state - most of the state's chief ministers have belonged to the community, which are now also the Hindu nationalist BJP's main support base. There are some 2,000 powerful Lingayat community mutts, or monastic establishments, which also run professional colleges.

As Raghu Karnad writes perceptively in The Wire website, Dr Kalburgi's murder may have more to do with the "fine rivalries and high political stakes within Lingayat caste politics".

Dr Kalburgi was a scholar of the vachana verses, the founding literature of the Lingayats. Vachanas are like daily rituals, helping people to lead their daily lives.

He had "frequently riled the Lingayat orthodoxy" with his interpretation of the verses and had received death threats from conservative members of his community.

"What Dr Kalburgi was giving was a liberal interpretation of the verses, which was more cosmopolitan and modern in its approach", says an expert. This, writes Karnad, had "implications not only for the theology of the Lingayat establishment, but for its enormous political and financial power".

In 1989, community hardliners had threatened to kill him for writing a "Kannada-language book they claim blasphemes a 12th century saint", according to a civil rights group report.

Dr Kalburgi was given protection by police and a group of 43 local writers and academics had formed a committee in support of the book. Recently, he had irked the hardliners again by saying that Lingayats could not be called Hindus.

At a meeting to mark his death yesterday, there was an overarching concern, writes Karnad, that a "culture of lethal violence might overwhelm the hallowed culture of discussion and questioning in Lingayat society".

Dr Kalburgi's killing comes two years after the murder of another prominent rationalist-thinker, Dr Narendra Dabholkar, in the western city of Pune. His killers have still not been caught.

But Sunday's killing reminds me of the fate of Perumal Murugan, the well-known writer in the Tamil language who earlier this year announced his decision to give up writing forever after wrathful protests against his novel Madhorubhagan by local Hindu and caste-based groups. "Author Perumal Murugan has died," the Tamil writer and professor posted on Facebook then.

This time a thinker actually has been killed.

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BBC article - some information about Bhutan
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: April 15, 2016 06:39AM

BBC -"(Bhutan) is one of the world's poorest nations."

[www.bbc.com]



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Bhutan measures quality of life by Gross National Happiness (GNH) rather than Gross Domestic Product (GDP), striking a balance, the government says, between material and mental well being.

The rating is looked after from the Gross National Happiness Centre, run by a man who knows his fair share of the opposite too.

Many Bhutanese are famously satisfied with their lives.

But even the prime minister has suggested the concept is overused, and masks problems with corruption and low standards of living. Nearly 7% of young people are unemployed and it is one of the world's poorest nations, in GDP terms


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But not everyone is happy
The country has not been idyllic for everyone.
Slavery was only abolished in 1958 and, after a series of policies preferential to the Tibetan-based majority Bhutanese culture, clashes broke out with the minority Nepalese community in 1990.
Tens of thousands of them fled to refugee camps in Nepal and their status is still in dispute. Some of those left behind say they still face discrimination.

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Re: Travel Hazards and Issues India Nepal Bhutan
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: April 15, 2016 06:42AM

Reality Hits Charming Bhutan BBC October 2013

[www.bbc.com]

Bhutan carries a severe debt and desperately needs money.

If Bhutan becomes a tourist hub, beware of cult charlatans and moocher
monks. Ditto for fellow travelers turning themselves into
spiritual mentors and using Bhutan as one item on their
"resumes".

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Re: Travel Hazards and Issues India Nepal Bhutan
Posted by: Misstyk ()
Date: April 16, 2016 11:10AM

Bhutanese monks are considered the most aggressive in trying to snag Western women for sex. Women have reported rape attempts by Bhutanense monks at Bodh Gaya, and the Bhutanese "lamas" staffing Kalu Rinpoche's main center in France were fired by the young Kalu Rinpoche after he received many complaints of pressure for sex. One rape case was reported to police and the lama was jailed.

Never assume that any Asian monk is harmless; bear in mind that the Buddha faced a constant challenge in getting his monks to observe the Vinaya, even with no women present, and was very reluctant to allow women into his order, with good reason. He knew his monks. Nothing has changed in that regard.

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Re: BBC article - some information about Bhutan
Posted by: Misstyk ()
Date: April 17, 2016 08:48AM

corboy Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> BBC -"(Bhutan) is one of the world's poorest
> nations."
>
> >
>
Quote
Bhutan measures quality of life by Gross
> National Happiness (GNH) rather than Gross
> Domestic Product (GDP), striking a balance, the
> government says, between material and mental well
> being.
>
> The rating is looked after from the Gross
> National Happiness Centre, run by a man who knows
> his fair share of the opposite too.
>
> Many Bhutanese are famously satisfied with their
> lives.
>
> But even the prime minister has suggested the
> concept is overused, and masks problems with
> corruption and low standards of living. Nearly 7%
> of young people are unemployed and it is one of
> the world's poorest nations, in GDP terms

>
>
>
>
>
>
Quote

But not everyone is happy
> The country has not been idyllic for everyone.
> Slavery was only abolished in 1958 .

The Gross National Happiness measure overlooks some very serious ills. Domestic violence is rampant in Bhutan, with many women reporting that they deserve to be beaten by their husbands if they burn the dinner while cooking, or commit other small transgressions.

[www.huffingtonpost.com]

Also, it was revealed a few years ago that sexually-transmitted diseases were common among monks, including child-monks. 12-year-old monks were found to have herpes and other STD's. [Child rape is common in Buddhist monasteries all over Asia.] Teen and young-adult monks, it was discovered, seek out psychiatric care for depression and other mental health concerns.

Any measure of Gross National Happiness that overlooks such serious matters can't be taken seriously. However, to Bhutan's credit, at least it's practicing a level of transparency is going public with these issues, and is seeking solutions. The same can't be said of the Dalai Lama's administration, or the governments of Nepal, India or China in Tibet.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/17/2016 09:03AM by Misstyk.

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Re: Travel Hazards and Issues India Nepal Bhutan
Posted by: Misstyk ()
Date: April 17, 2016 09:24AM

[www.huffingtonpost.com]

Addendum to previous post: link to article on monks.

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India: Cows Protected While Women are Raped w Impunity
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: June 28, 2017 08:44AM

Why are Indian women wearing cow masks?
By Geeta Pandey
BBC News, Delhi

[www.bbc.com]

Quote

A photography project which shows women wearing a cow mask and asks the politically explosive question - whether women are less important than cattle in India - has gone viral in the country and earned its 23-year-old photographer the ire of Hindu nationalist trolls.

"I am perturbed by the fact that in my country, cows are considered more important than a woman, that it takes much longer for a woman who is raped or assaulted to get justice than for a cow which many Hindus consider a sacred animal," Delhi-based photographer Sujatro Ghosh told the BBC.
India is often in the news for crimes against women and, according to government statistics, a rape is reported every 15 minutes.

"These cases go on for years in the courts before the guilty are punished, whereas when a cow is slaughtered, Hindu extremist groups immediately go and kill or beat up whoever they suspect of slaughter."

The project, he says, is "his way of protesting" against the growing influence of the vigilante cow protection groups that have become emboldened since the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, came to power in the summer of 2014.

"I've been concerned over the Dadri lynching [when a Muslim man was killed by a Hindu mob over rumours that he consumed and stored beef] and other similar religious attacks on Muslims by cow vigilantes," Ghosh said.

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In recent months, the humble cow has become India's most polarising animal.

The BJP insists that the animal is holy and should be protected. Cow slaughter is banned in several states, stringent punishment has been introduced for offenders and parliament is considering a bill to bring in the death penalty for the crime.

But beef is a staple for Muslims, Christians and millions of low-caste Dalits (formerly untouchables) who have been at the receiving end of the violence perpetrated by the cow vigilante groups.
Nearly a dozen people have been killed in the past two years in the name of the cow. Targets are often picked based on unsubstantiated rumours and Muslims have been attacked for even transporting cows for milk.

Two weeks ago when he launched the project on Instagram, the response was "all positive. It went viral within the first week, my well wishers and even people I didn't know appreciated it."

But after the Indian press covered it and put out their stories on Facebook and Twitter, the backlash began.

"Some wrote comments threatening me. On Twitter people started trolling me, some said I, along with my models, should be taken to Delhi's Jama Masjid [mosque] and slaughtered, and that our meat should be fed to a woman journalist and a woman writer the nationalists despise. They said they wanted to see my mother weep over my body."

Some people also contacted the Delhi police, "accusing me of trying to instigate riots and asking them to arrest me".

Ghosh is not surprised by the vitriol and admits that his work is an "indirect comment" on the BJP.

"I'm making a political statement because it's a political topic, but if we go deeper into the things, then we see that Hindu supremacy was always there, it has just come out in the open with this government in the past two years."
The threats, however, have failed to scare him. "I'm not afraid because I'm working for the greater good," he says.

A positive fallout of the project going viral has been that he's got loads of messages from women from across the globe saying they too want to be a part of this campaign.

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Master Shashi Dubey - report of Indus Routes travel gone wrong
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: July 05, 2018 11:59PM

"master shashi dubey" "indus routes" trauma

[www.google.com]

[forum.culteducation.com]

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Slum Tourism Orphanage Tourism -Beware do background checks
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: July 21, 2018 10:13PM

Slum tourism
Orphanage tourism

If a guru, ashram or monastery claims to do social service for the poor and needy and offers volunteer opportunities, do some background research.

Before you pay to volunteer abroad, think of the harm you might do
Ian Birrell

[www.theguardian.com]

"india" slum tourism

[www.google.com]

"india" orphanage tourism

[www.google.com]

"cambodia" "orphange tourism"

[www.google.com]

"laos" "orphanage tourism"

[www.google.com]

"nepal" "orphange tourism"

[www.google.com]

Slum Tourism

[www.google.com]

"india" "slum tourism"

[www.google.com]

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