India! I dare you to be rich

Category Archive: Bad ideas!

The seriously confused Kavita Krishnan, a passionate Indian communist who opposes liberty #2

Following from my previous post re: my correspondence with communist Kavita Krishnan, here’s a brief summary of Kavita’s views and my rebuttal. I will, time permitting, elaborate a bit more. But BFN/DOF contain more than sufficient information to rebut these communist views. 

I wasn't aware about Locke living off the proceeds of slave trade. I'll check that but I wouldn't be surprised. Jefferson had slaves. Even Lincoln did not directly oppose slavery – at least for a long time. It was quite customary to partake in a range of businesses in those days, including slavery. The Bible has slavery, the Quran has slavery, India had (and has) slavery. 

In DOF I've discussed how the concept of liberty has expanded significantly over the years. That some theorists who founded the theories of liberty did not fully understand or practice these theories is not news. Gandhi himself was an extreme racist against "Negros", although he fought British racism against Indians. We can't transpose time, only ideas. And Kavita is therefore very wrong to mix up a lot of outdated and ancient ideas, or try to throw out the baby, as it were, with the bathwater.

The tragedy with the confused thinking of people like Kavita is that their wrong ideas have REAL impacts. They harm REAL people. 


Kavita: I am afraid we differ v much on what we mean by 'liberty', economic included. Liberty isn't, for me, the freedom of a few to accumulate wealth at the cost of the labour of many.

As I mentioned to her:

a) Liberty is comprehensive and

b) The common man's life is made SO MUCH BETTER under even a remotely free system:

"In Prague in 2012 … I asked the taxi driver taking me to the hotel about life under communism and the benefits of the post-communism economy. I asked the driver what has been the most advantageous thing about the end of communism in former Czechoslovakia. His reply, “I can buy any brand of yoghurt I want!” This struck me as a most profound answer, not only because it lent great weight to the importance of economic freedom in people’s lives but because it gave even greater power to what we often refer to as “the mystery of the mundane.”

Economic freedom holds the secret to the prosperity and education of a billion Indians.

There can be NO liberty that does not allow liberty of action. Kavita is willing to impose force to restrict trade. She is definitely not a proponent of liberty.


My question: Do you agree that there should be freedom of occupation? And of trade? These are basic freedoms. Some people (generally the smarter ones, e.g. Bill Gates) will become enormously rich as a result of this process. Is that a problem per se? Clearly such people have not imposed a cost on anyone else. Indeed, the labour involved has benefited through better jobs and opportunities.

I assume that you are OK with freedom of occupation and trade? For that's a fundamental freedom each human should have.

Kavita: why would I not be ok with freedom of occupation? Free trade is however a v different beast…


Kavita: It's well established that theorists of the 'free market' like Locke, lived on the proceeds of slave trade. 'Free' market economy was tied up with colonial plunder, then protectionism, and STILL involves slave like labour in countries like India, Bangladesh and many others.

'Free trade' advocates strangely have a problem with labourers having the freedom to unionise.

Free trade involved the sale of slaves for a very large portion of its origins. And even now it involves the highly unequal sale of labour.

My response: Under no circumstance is free trade related to slavery. If you look into history, it was the classical liberals (votaries for freedom) who helped abolish slavery and they were the ones who brought the first labour unions. There can be no violation of human rights in a free trade system.

Details in my manuscript DOF (

Freedom doesn't mean freedom to harm.

Clearly you have neither read the history of unions nor bothered to read my work.

If someone is free to work (occupation), why is he/she not free to trade the produce of that occupation? And who is anyone else to interfere in this freedom to trade? If I produce a widget and want to sell to someone, who is anyone else to stop me?


Kavita: Libertarians mostly dont seem to encourage the liberty of workers from the third world to travel to the first world! Liberty of trade hasnt meant liberty of workers any time in the world's history…

My response: I am what is called classical liberal. Libertarians (like Bryan Caplan) actually promote unrestricted labour mobility. I don't . Re: labour mobility, each country has taxpayers who pay for its services and governance. They are entitled to impose restrictions on who can come in and access these services. In most cases they are willing to allow talented outsiders who can add value. Millions of Indians now live permanently abroad. But it would be foolhardy on their part to allow uneducated people en-masse. A lot of these countries do take uneducated too. But to allow 1 billion uneducated/ ill-educated Indians to enter USA would doom the Americans to total penury.

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Salil Tripathi is wrong to advocate the continuation of socialism in India’s constitution #2

Now for a somewhat more detailed comment on my correspondence with Salil Tripathi  on twitter, documented here.

Salil informed me that he has criticised Nehruvian socialism in several articles in Guardian, Mint, Asia Inc, FEER (V 2.0), and other publications. All these are available online.

I went to google advanced search and looked within for keywords like "Nehru", "socialism", "socialist", etc. There seemed to be a number of incidental references to these terms, but only one article seemed to display a sense about what Salil stands for.

Extract below. The whole article is worth reading, to get a sense of Salil's take on socialism.


Upsurge In India (1994)
After its independence from Britain in 1947, India tried to follow the Gandhian principles of self-reliance and self-sufficiency under the leadership of Jawaharlal Nehru, its first prime minister. It pursued this course through democratic socialism. But the Indian economy became mired in a complex system of protectionism, permits and licenses. Companies had to seek permission for everything from opening and closing plants to expanding their operations, or as the acerbic former managing director of Tata Iron and Steel Co., Russi Mody, put it, even to go to the bathroom.

Still, the socialist approach worked — for a while. By the 1960s, India had an impressive industrial base. "Thou shalt not consume foreign products" was an unwritten mantra that the bureaucratic babus (low-level clerks) parroted as they made business decisions for Indian companies. But the push for self-sufficiency became twisted into a paranoia of foreign things, which was exploited by politicians, says John Patterson, an international business consultant who lived in India for 11 years. In 1977, the ruling Janata Party, with its fervent commitment to socialism and nationalization, began kicking out multinationals with glee. Not surprisingly, foreign investment plunged. [Source] 


The idea that "socialist approached worked – for a while" – and evidence adduced (that India had an "impressive" industrial base) is laughable. But I agree that Salil has some kind of innate resistance to state intervention. That's probably what he is referring to when he suggests that he has written against Nehruvian socialism.

And now for Salil's recent article which set me off. According to Salil: 

1) "The basic structure [of the Indian Constitution] doctrine, in other words, already contained within it the principles of secularism and socialism." 

The argument used by Salil is an alleged "mandate to build a welfare state under the directive principles of state policy". Later he cites the resolve in the Preamble to "secure all citizens social, economic and political justice" to suggest that "socialism" was already contained within the Constitution's basic structure.

I would like to remind Salil that in this issue has been already fully addressed in the Constituent Assembly itself. Prof. K. T. Shah (Bihar) moved a resolution "That in clause (1) of article 1, after the words 'shall be a' the words `Secular, Federal Socialist' be inserted."and the amended article or clause will read as follows: "India shall be a Secular, Federal, Socialist Union of States."

To this Dr. Ambedkar objected. He said "My objections, stated briefly are two. In the first place the Constitution … is merely a mechanism for the purpose of regulating the work of the various organs of the State. It is not a mechanism where by particular members or particular parties are installed in office. What should be the policy of the State, how the Society should be organised in its social and economic side are matters which must be decided by the people themselves according to time and circumstances. It cannot be laid down in the Constitution itself, because that is destroying democracy altogether. If you state in the Constitution that the social organisation of the State shall take a particular form, you are, in my judgment, taking away the liberty of the people to decide what should be the social organisation in which they wish to live. It is perfectly possible today, for the majority people to hold that the socialist organisation of society is better than the capitalist organisation of society. But it would be perfectly possible for thinking people to devise some other form of social organisation which might be better than the socialist organisation of today or of tomorrow. I do not see therefore why the Constitution should tie down the people to live in a particular form and not leave it to the people themselves to decide it for themselves. 

Ambedkar's second objection is deeply fraught and I strongly object to it – sneaking a "socialist" approach through the Directive Principles. Indeed, the Directive Principles completely contradict Ambedkar's first objection, stated above. Clearly, Ambedkar failed his duty towards India in a number of ways: one of the ways was to allow the ridiculous idea of "directive principles of state policy" to be inserted into the Constitution, the only saving grace being that these are not justiciable.

I REJECT entirely the idea that socialism is part of the Indian Constitution's basic structure. Salil is wrong to make such a deduction. It amounts to the total destruction of democracy itself, to force a particular economic approach/ policy into the Constitution itself.

2) Discarding socialism from the Constitution would provide the government the excuse to dismantle the rather weak social protection the government offers to the poorest. 

This is of course, absurd. The idea that socialism does ANY good (whatsoever!) for the poorest is preposterous. All evidence throughout history is unequivocal: socialism DESTROYS wealth and impoverishes entire nations.

And to suggest that India would not have alleviated, if not eliminated poverty, under a capitalist system, is a severe distortion of the theoretical and empirical foundations of the two systems.

I can see what is going on here. Salil has been seduced into thinking that "socialism" is good. I ask him – show me ONE constitution in ANY free country that has this word embedded into its constitution. A country cannot claim to be free if it forces all policies to be socialist.

In my book, Breaking Free of Nehru, I've elaborated on the massive destruction of liberties and wealth that Nehru's socialism caused India (and continues to do so).

I've also shown how poverty can be ELIMINATED (not just "alleviated) within THREE years in a capitalist system. 

The detailed policies involved have been provided in the Sone Ki Chidiya Agenda.

We DON'T need socialism in India's Constitution. Swarna Bharat Party is committed to removing this offensive phrase from the Constitution.

I hope Salil Tripathi takes some time to read BFN and the SKC agenda to appreciate that liberty is not divisible. You can't, on the one hand, promote freedom of speech and belief, but on the other authorise government bureaucrats to come down heavily on private enterprise and private property – which is the essential concomitant of liberty.

If anything, the word "capitalism" should be included in the Preamble. But I'm with Ambedkar on this – that the constitution should not refer to any policy, but merely provide a framework for democratic action. So no, SBP will not introduce the word capitalism into India's Constitution.

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“Extremist” Hindus and Muslims are like two spoiled bully children who demand our attention (or our life)

Hindu and Muslims (on average, i.e. exceptions notwithstanging: qualification is crucial in these charged times!) seem to be like two spoiled bully children who happened to get two different dolls when small and now can't outgrow these dolls, and insist their doll is the "only" doll worth playing with. (Pardon me for ignoring the Christians, the Buddhists, and whatever else exists: just a statement of fact, in terms of the TIME these issues are taking in our lives today). 

Each of them wants to attract our attention even as significant questions of science remain to apply our minds to. I would rather have done serious scientific research and/ or painting in my lifetime, but it has almost entirely been washed away in dealing with primitive humans. 

It is not as if these bully children are willing to take any feedback or willing to be questioned. Their only way of persuasion is through force, bullies that they are. The extreme ones among these will happily take our lives if we don't agree with them.

Unlike a child who is curious about the world and asks questions, these spoilt children force us to accept as "gospel" truth what someone may have told them when they were really, really, small. It is almost as if they have determined never to use their mind, thereby rejecting the only thing that distinguishes them from animals.

They don't understand the concept of marketing, or persuasion, either. Nor the idea of respecting other humans. Sell your idea to the market! Let INDEPENDENT people who are not obliged to appreciate your doll evaluate competing religions and pick the one they like.

But no. It is almost as if these bullies are afraid that if open competition were to occur, they would (both) necessarily lose – to science. They want to rig the game by indoctrinating little babies so they can create get slaves who promote their "beliefs" without question.

I would be willing to tolerate their addiction to their doll (the one they were first given when they were growing up). But it is very hard to deal with them, given their proclivity to use force.

Here's an example of a grow up bully child.

Shame on such bullies!

Can't persuade through reason. ONLY VIOLENCE! 


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This BRUTAL flogging of Raif (Zaef) Badawi will mark the beginning of the end of Saudi tyranny.

In April 2014, Saudi Arabia shut down the Saudi Liberal Network website created by Raif Badawi.

Not content with destroying freedom of speech, the Saudis are now flogging the young man, aged 30.

He will get 50 lashes each Friday for the next 20 weeks.

FOR EACH FLOGGING OF BADAWI, the Saudis will lose global support of a thousand people. 

Unfortunately, one can't distinguish between Saudi oil and normal oil. Else one would BOYCOTT Saudi oil.

These tyrannical monsters are being fed off our oil purchases.

Let the world find cheaper alternatives soon. That's one way to disable these monsters.


U.S. Rebukes Saudis for Sentencing Blogger to 1,000 Lashes

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IF the Paris killings of journalists are Islam-driven, then it may be time to consider locking out the Islamic world

I'm deeply concerned. Very angry at this – CONTINUING barbarity by followers of Islam.

My FB post:

Likely cause: that this magazine had published cartoons of Mohammed. If true, then it may be time to consider an embargo on Muslims from the Middle East entering the West. If true, it may be time to consider locking out the barbaric Islamic world from all civilisation. Its influence appears to be sheer poison.

This is just not done – to migrate to free societies (which then feed them, e.g. welfare) and then KILL the people who allowed them into these societies. This is EXTREME viciousness. I reject ANY religion whose followers undertake such dastardly acts.

There are people (and I face some of them on my blog on a daily basis) from extreme versions of Islam and Hinduism who JUST DON'T GET IT: that OTHERS ***DON'T*** HAVE TO RESPECT THEIR MOHAMMED OR RAM OR KRISHNA.

The Enlightenment and Reformation has allowed Christ to be mocked. Christians don't go around shooting those who mock Christ. Christ is mocked on a daily basis by some obnoxious people. Let them mock. That's not ground to shoot them.

Why do these people who claim to follow Islam (or some other religions) don't get this basic message of freedom of speech?

At least 12 people were killed in a shooting Wednesday at a French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, which has published cartoons of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad, police told reporters.
Local news media reported that two police officers were among those killed. Currently, the number of injured people is thought to be around 10, of which five are critically wounded, according to Reuters.


Sulaiman Yakub Loving the Prophet (salla Allah alayhi wa sallam) is a necessary requirement of Iman. Defending his honor is a sign of belief. This is done by following his teachings and practice, not by murdering in his name.

Our Prophet was verbally abused and physically harrased multiple times in Makkah. Never ONCE did any of the Companions go and murder those who did such deeds.

Do those who kill others in the name of the Prophet believe that they love him more than the companions?
And even for those who believe that the penalty for blasphemy should be death: by unanimous consensus of ALL the scholars of Islam, this must take place after a legitimate trial, by a qualified judge, appointed by a legitimate Islamic state. Under NO circumstances does Islam allow vigilante justice, for to open this door leads to chaos, confusion and bloodshed.

Muslims: get your act together!! Such acts of terror are not only haram and spill innocent blood, they will come back to harm you and your communities in the short and long run.

And as a result, all of us will suffer.

Sanjeev Sabhlok Sulaiman Yakub, from the killings of a 100+ children to this, to many other acts in repeated succession – now for decades on end – Islam is implicated. There appears to be something deeply poisonous in this religion, even more than the poison in the average religion. I've recently browsed through some "hate speech" embedded in the Quran, and yes, there is more than its fair share in this religion (almost all religions specialise in hate speech, btw). A very divisive religion, indeed.


I have some excellent Muslim friends on FB. And I know of some Muslims who are fighting these extremists e.g. Mike Ghouse. I admire such people's work.

At the same time, I think all limits and bounds of civilisation are being rapidly crossed by SOME followers of Islam. Fanatic Hindus are following fast, on this trail. 

The great problem with the barbaric Middle Eastern nations (where Islam is the only religion allowed) is that they do not tolerate the slightest freedom of speech or opinion. 

Even in India, it is the Muslims who have blocked freedom of speech. There is CLEAR evidence that Muslims forced Macaulay to block freedom of speech while drafting the IPC. 

I think Islam is now DEEPLY and conclusively implicated in the destruction of liberties across the world. 

Unless I see Muslims join me in DEMANDING freedom of speech, I know that the antil-liberaty philosophy of Islam remains a serious obstacle to liberty and progress of India. Just like I criticise RSS and Hindutva fanatics, I object and decry Muslims who won't tolerate free speech.

I have written repeatedly that Indian Muslims must lead the Islamic world by demanding free speech and economic liberty. But how many Muslims have joined me yet on FTI/SCKF/SBP? Only one (and that too, only recently, and he is still figuring out things)


Further notes from this post

Sulaiman Yakub Our Prophet was verbally abused and physically harrased multiple times in Makkah. Never ONCE did any of the Companions go and murder those who did such deeds.

Do those who kill others in the name of the Prophet believe that they love him more than the companions? I have joined SBP and have even volunteered a contribution await bank details to deposit the same but if joining SBP i have to loose my identity then I too will have to revisit the same

Mike Ghouse Sanjeev Sabhlok – hold it please!

I am defending common sense here.

Let’s get those guys and do what the law of the country allows.

New York had 1300 Murders and 3500 Rapes – is it fair to say New Yorkers are rapists and murderers? You cannot blame religion for individual acts.

If a rapists is running around in a neighborhood, everyone is scared, but when you catch him, a sense of safety prevails. If a terrorist kills, everyone is sacred, should we catch the bastard or blame his religion?

Common sense, if we catch the bad guys and punish them, it’s over. If we blame the religion, nothing will happen – and it is downright stupid to blame religion – you cannot kick, kill, hang, beat up or bury it, so why bark at it?

There are always bad people out there – get them. Obama got Osama with a single death and a chopper, whereas Bush killed millions in Iraq and Afghanistan destroyed those nations – and … America with job losses, depressions, divorces, business closures, home bankruptcies and $10 Trillion deficit.

If you are familiar with statistics, you know you cannot call that insignificant percent as representative of Muslims. Bad guys are bad guys, you cannot blame religion.

Prophet Muhammad, like all other religious masters was ridiculed during histime, what did he do? Prayed for the miscreants! We are making a film on that.


Sulaiman Yakub Sanjeev Sabhlok> please do not fall into a trap your ideas r wonderful n perhaps SBP will attract a lot of inteligentia but coming on thick on individuals belief might not work let each one have his space ad long as we are totally agreed on larger issues facing this country. Having divergent views is not a bad thing as long as we can come to a tangible result by consensus

Asim Zaheer Farooqi Unfortunately Sulaiman and Mike, what Sanjeev is saying may actually happen one day. Extremists follow two religions – they follow islam and the extreme ideology taught by some major middle east countries. If the world needs to fix this problem, they first need to fix Saudi Arab. A common muslim believes things being said in Saudi to be islam. It is not. It is plain extremism and promotes covertly even more radicalism. Fixing modern problems of freedom of speech in the muslim world is a two step process. First fix freedom of speech in Saudi and then the rest of the world. You need to fix the root with the basics. So we need to fix saudi with the basics of freedom of speech and religion.

Sanjeev Sabhlok Mike Ghouse, there is a HUGE difference between common crime and organised crime. We detest KKK because it has committed racist crime in an organised manner. Note that this crime, if committed by an Islamic group, is a POLITICAL CRIME – against free speech.

I don't speak like this nor will ever do so, for pathetic "ordinary" criminals who may be found in any particular religion. This, however, is a SYSTEMATIC attack on free speech.

The attack on Malala, the Pakistani school, all represent attacks by SOME Muslims (not all!) on free speech.

Mike Ghouse lives in USA so understands free speech. He vigorously defends free speech. However, most Muslims living outside the West (including in India) don't defend free speech. Blasphemy is a big deal for them. They've even gone and hijacked a UN organisation to resolve that people should respect religion – thereby that blasphemy should be stopped (by force).

No! Respect has to be earned. Islam has not earned my respect, nor has ANY religion. That's why I have no religion.

The problem is that the Muslims continue to fight against free speech, and do not step forward to demand US First Amendment equivalent rights.

Indian Muslims have a key role to play. But they are not playing such a role. Rushdie's Satanic Verses is still banned in India. The RSS is merely following in the footsteps of the Muslims.

The problem DOES start with Saudi Arabia and the Middle East which has ZERO tolerance for other religions and beliefs. People are being regularly massacred if they don't believe Islam.

Why are such people then able to migrate to the West, which has systematically fought for freedom of speech (although rapidly declining in Europe)?

I think Islamic nations must legislate First Amendment equivalent laws, else the West should shut their door on Muslims migrating from the Middle East.

Sanjeev Sabhlok Sulaiman Yakub, I'm glad you are a supporter of liberty (SKC agenda). We DESPERATELY need LEADERS, now. Note that my call is to consider blocking Middle Eastern nations, which are fundamentally illiberal.

There is great hope for India. India DID HAVE a rudimentary free speech protection in 1950 (now virtually eliminated). We are not a theocracy but a republic. All religions are protected.

What we need is Muslims to step up and demand withdrawal of the ban on Rushdie's book – not because they like the book (I've not read it nor intend to read it, so can't comment) – but because they defend the right of ALL people to publish their views.

It is not good enough to be an endorser, now.

Now the time has come to stand up and LEAD.

You will need to do this not as SBP member, but as a Muslim. The Muslims will have to be organised and asked to demand free speech in India.

I'm (personally) against all religions, but that doesn't mean religious people can't join FTI. We insist on protecting their religious freedom.

What I find, though – and I've said so repeatedly – is that Indian Muslims continue to block free speech.

Once Indian Muslims fight FOR free speech, then we can also bring and end to the ridiculous fools called RSS. They are merely copying Muslims.

I've said this MANY times before

Note that I have nothing against people following their religion, so long as it doesn't encroach on the beliefs (or lack thereof) of others. I strongly defend religious rights.

But freedom of speech is NON-NEGOTIABLE.

Now, are you ready to organise a MUSLIM movement in India to demand that all bans, including ban on Rushdie's book, be removed??

Not good enough to endorse SKC agenda (which says precisely this). Someone has to bell the cat, and lead India – and the rest of the Muslim world – to freedom.

Muslim bigotry as the SOLE reason for the growth of Hindu bigotry, RSS and BJP

Sanjeev Sabhlok Indeed, the ENTIRE Middle East is implicated. Islamic nations directly assault free speech at every step.

Sanjeev Sabhlok Ashish Labh reL "many adherents of the religion believe in universal gagging when it comes to criticism or caricaturing of their religion irrespective of where in world it happens". SOME adherents do, not all. There are plenty who oppose any gag on speech.

The problem is that these few who oppose free speech are extremely vicious. The only way they can be curbed is by having all nations agree to the US First Amendment level of freedom of speech.

Or the UN declaration of human rights Article 19 which says: "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions ****without interference**** and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."

Rahul Rana "New York had 1300 Murders and 3500 Rapes – is it fair to say New Yorkers are rapists and murderers?"

Excellent response given by Sanjeev Sabhlok to this typical stupid argument used frequently (by Mike Ghouse this time). Since more people die in car accidents than in terrorist attacks, why don't we declare war on cars?

Mike Ghouse Is Hinduism a violent religion? Did they not kill 8000 Sikhs and a thousand MUSLIMS? It is not the religion, it's the bad hindus like bad muslim or others.

Should America ban Hindus because of what they are doing to Christians?

For every muslim ass, there is a Hindu, Christian Jewsih and Buddhist ass out there,

Sanjeev Sabhlok Mike Ghouse, let's not raise unrelated issues. India has no (recent) tradition of free speech. That, too, is because of Indian Muslims who have blocked it entirely. It is clear to me that the anti-free speech stance of RSS etc. is purely in response to the anti-free speech stance of the Indian Muslims.

You should ask Indian Muslims to support free speech by allowing the ban on Rushdie's book to be lifted.

Re: communal riots in India these matters – within India – have a history of their own that is entirely unrelated to what I'm talking about: fanatic Muslims coming to the West and killing people to block free speech.

I think many Hindus are exercising a very bad influence in the West by trying to reduce free speech protections. But they can't do so in USA.

On the other hand no Hindu in the West has, to date, killed anyone on to block free speech. That is a characteristic PURELY of Islam. Let's call a spade a space and not defend the indefensible.

Instead of downplaying the political crimes of these killers ("others are bad"), please do something to make Islamic societies in the Middle East (and elsewhere) promote free speech.

Alternatively, I believe the West must consider applying broad-brush restrictions on the immigration of Muslims – apart from imposing economic sanctions on Islamic nations.

Sulaiman Yakub, Mike Ghouse etc. – here's a suggestion. Just like I started an Absolute Freedom of Speech page on FB (apart from my writings on this topic), would Indian Muslims start a page called "Indian Muslims against the ban on Rushdie's Satanic Verses"? 

It is ACTIONS of this sort that are now needed. Islam is DEEPLY AND CONCLUSIVELY implicated in being the only major religion that fundamentally opposes freedom of speech. Just yesterday, a senior Muslim leader in India called for the killing of all those who "disrespect" Muhammed. 

Unless liberal Muslims ACT, the situation will get worse. My biggest problem is that the fanatic Muslims are emboldening the fanatic Hindus. Both are growing in power and violence, each drawing support from the other. 

But it all BEGINS with Islam. Of that, I have absolutely no doubt.

Let Indian Muslims break that cycle by demanding an end to all bans, all censorship in India.

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Deliberate/ superstition-based child abuse in Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism

An article in Nirmukta, published today, outlines the ongoing abuse of children in various religions – both due to religious reasons, and due to perversion often found (of course, not exclusively) in religious institutions.

There will surely come a time when children's legal rights will become stronger and punishment for many such activities institutionalised in law. 

[This is a placeholder blog post, for my research/ notes on this topic. This initial post is not well researched, largely being an organised summary of the Nirmukta article, but time permitting, I’ll add to it in future months/ years.]

See Wikipedia entry: Religious abuse (against children)  | Child sexual abuse in religious groups

In the name of God: A profile of Religion-Related Child Abuse – by Bette Bottoms, Phillip Shaver, Gail Goodman and Jianjian Quin (Journaal of Social Issues, 1995)

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment (a book). The author says: "Religion can provide children with a wonderful upbringing, but it is naïve and irresponsible to see religion only as a force for good" (Source).

Inquiry into the Handling of Child Abuse by Religious and other Non-Government Organisations. See an article on this.

Police in U.K. plan to tackle religious-based child abuse.

Child abuse in Christianity

1) A little boy, a toddler, had been starved to death by a small cult in Baltimore for failing to say "amen" at mealtimes [Source]

2) Catholic church covered up child sex abuse, Cardinal George Pell tells Victoria's inquiry

In response I wrote: This place of shame and atrocity on children (the Church) is supposed to be the promoter of the 10 commandments. That is one more reason why I oppose all religion. These are political bodies, all about protecting the "reputation" of the "church" or other such political institution.

Prof.Babu Joseph, an Indian Christian leader wrote in response: If some religionists have gone wrong how can one denounce religion in toto.Like in politics there are bad apples in religion too.The very purpose of religion is reformist.

My problem is that this is not about bad apples but SYSTEMATIC political behavior, that protects criminals. Organised religions SYSTEMATICALLY protect criminals. Just like any (major) Indian political party does.

3) Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

This Commission not only deals (mainly) with abuses in Christian institutions, but in Hindu ones, as well (e.g. the report on a Hindu swami I discussed here).

4) "For decades the higher-ups in the Catholic Church were reassigning known sexual predators to remote parishes rather than having them arrested and prosecuted. Those men in authority thus engaged in willful cover-ups, brash lawbreaking, and the aggressive slandering of accusers—and all with utter impunity. The extent of this criminality is hard to exaggerate: over six thousand priests have now been credibly implicated in some form of sex abuse, five hundred have been jailed, and more victims have been made known than one can imagine. After the extent of the crimes—the rapes and molestations as well as the cover-ups—became widely publicized, many Americans, and many Catholics specifically, were disgusted. Not only were the actual sexual crimes themselves morally abhorrent, but the degree to which those in positions of power sought to cover up these crimes and allow them to continue was truly shocking. The result has been clear: a lot of Catholics have become ex-Catholics. For example, consider the situation in New England. Between 2000 and 2010, the Catholic Church lost 28 percent of its members in New Hampshire and 33 percent of its members in Maine, and closed nearly seventy parishes—a quarter of the total number—throughout the Boston area. In 1990, 54 percent of Massachusetts residents identified as Catholic, but it was down to 39 percent in 2008. And according to an “American Values” survey from 2012, although nearly one-third of Americans report being raised Catholic, only 22 percent currently identify as such—a precipitous nationwide decline indeed." [Source]

Child abuse in Islam

The indoctrination and use of children as suicide bombers in some Islamic socities is one of the most abominable abuses imaginable.

Taliban's attack on girl children who 'dare' to study in school (e.g. Malala) is another example, driven by Islamic extremism.

 When a young girl was sexually abused by a Mullah at a village near Mangaluru the case was about to be hushed up claiming that it was a matter inside the ‘community’. [Source]

This is the kind of indoctrination sometimes practiced in Islam: 

Child abuse in Hinduism

The Hare Krishna movement has been cited in this article (Narendra Nayak's article, cited above). Also:

1) In Chandraguthi near Belgaum young girls are dedicated to the goddess Yellamma(in other words to a life of prostitution).

2) In temples near Vijayapura children are thrown from a height and caught in blankets. In Gulbarga there are instances of child sacrifice, burying of children up to the neck in pits during eclipses etc.

3) An incident had taken place in the heart of Mangalore several years ago in which a five year old girl was sacrificed by a father and daughter duo.

4) I could also recall one incident connected with a so called miracle in which a man, a Ayyappa devotee was photographed dipping the feet of a child into ‘boiling’ oiland claiming that it was due to the protection of Ayyappa that the child’s feet were not being burnt! On seeing that I panicked not because of his ‘miracle’ but because of the fear that some other gullible devotee of the same god could perhaps try to do the same with real boiling oil! So, I had to rush to the Press to debunk the miracle adding that no one should try to replicate that. Luckily this was well publicized in the newspapers and such an incident did not happen.

Child abuse in Buddhism

We could also take up the case of Shambavi, a six year old, said to be a reincarnation of Maitreyi, friend of Dalai Lama in his previous incarnation! Preparations were on to establish a Mutt in her name and she was being taken care of by a lady who claimed to have found her in Varanasi. When we challenged that she changed her tune and said that she was her daughter! A complaint was filed with the Human Rights Commission stating that the place of the child was in a school and not in any religious place. This campaign caught on well and the Commission ruled that her place was in school! Dalai who was supposed to inaugurate the religious institution developed cold feet as he did not wish to be involved in a case of child abuse and backed out! [Source]

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