<SiteLock

The Meteoric Rise of L. Murugan, the new BJP Chief of Tamil Nadu


Keerthi Nathan

keerthi nathanThe past week, BJP unit of Tamil Nadu was suddenly brimming with a lot of activity after being dormant for a few months. Mr. L. Murugan had been appointed the President of the BJP State unit of TN much to everyone’s surprise. Mr. L. Murugan is also the Vice Chairman of the National SC/ST Commission. The post of State President of BJP TN unit had been lying vacant since September 2019 when Mrs. Tamilisai Soundararajan (former BJP TN President) was appointed the Governor of Telangana.

History of BJP in Tamil Nadu

Let us first analyze by tracing the current scenario of BJP in Tamil Nadu and how they have come a long way since the premiership of Mr. Narendra Modi. Before 2014, the BJP in Tamil Nadu was virtually an non-existent force barring a few instances such as winning four assembly seats in the 2001 TN Assembly Election thanks to its alliance with the DMK. But since then the party had been on a wane and used to consistently poll around 2% - 3% of the vote share. Cut short to 2014, the country was witnessing a phenomenal wave in the form of Mr. Narendra Modi and anti-Congress sentiment was running high primarily due to the anti-incumbency and corruption scandals.

Read more...

Chithralekha: An Icon of Resistance


Carmel Christy K J

The road gets narrower as you go to Chithralekha's grandmother's house where she used to live at the rear end of the village in Edat, Kannur in Kerala. The road ends at her house and there is no way to go further. Dalit houses at the end of the village is not an exception in India.1 Villages are designed in such a way that the upper-castes do not need to cross Dalit houses as they pass. It was not just about the possibility of them seeing or touching Dalits. It was also about a well-designed ecological and geographical exclusion. Houses are arranged in such a manner that wind blows from where upper-caste houses are situated to the Dalit houses. The idea was that upper-castes should not get polluted by the wind that has breezed over lower castes. The caste order decided not just access to the material and cultural resources, but also to the flows of nature.

ch book 1

It is in such a place where caste decides even the nature you can access that Chithralekha, a Dalit woman, decides to drive her autorickshaw on public roads in 2004. Her entry to the public roads which is in principle shared by all invites the wrath of the people from castes above hers and other guardians of the caste order. Ayyankali's fight against the casteist order more than a century ago did result in accessing public roads for Dalits in Kerala.2 If the public roads have become accessible to all and the right to work is ensured, how will one explain attacks against Chithralekha?

Read more...

Reading 'Guja-ratri: Reflections on Moditva'


Noel Mariam George

noel mariamThe book 'Guja-ratri: Reflections on Moditva' attempts to uncover the darkness that has engulfed the country since the rise of Motiva through a series of 17 articles. The attempt of this review is to look at the book through three conceptual frameworks.

Deconstructing the Binary of Dalit-Muslim

The book begins with Ambedkar’s quote that marks the impossibility of the constitution of an inorganic category like the Hindu; until there is a Hindu-Muslim riot. The Hindu, in that sense is a politically constituted category without the social. Raju Solanki attempts to look at this contradiction to prove why the idea of a Muslim- Dalit antagonism is in fact two types if exclusions in the guise of conflict. The Muslim- as the political contradiction is the ‘excretion’ of the nation; while the Dalit as the social contradiction, is the ‘excretion’ of the Hindu Social order. The riot then cannot be understood as an entropic, anarchic process; but rather as a systematic production of ‘conflict’ that only furthers the regime of selective criminalisation by the brahminical state.

Read more...

Urgent Appeal: Help a meritorious Dalit girl student secure her admission in UK University

 

Round Table India

T Siri Chandana, a BSc (Maths, Physics, Computer Science) student from Adikavi Nannaya University in Rajahmundry,  Andhra Pradesh, has received offers of Admission and Excellence/Merit Scholarship from three Universities in the UK: University of Salford in Manchester, Wrexham Glyndwr University in Wrexham and Solent University, Southampton to study Master's program in Computer Science/Information Technology (pl see attached images of the offers)

ss1

Siri Chandana has been a brilliant student throughout her scholastic career, having scored 97% marks (Grade A) in her tenth board exam, 92% in junior college (Grade A) and 88% (Grade A) in her BSc (MPCs) in 2019. She has also received several prizes, honours for her participation in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. Despite coming from very hard circumstances- having lost her father at a young age, around ten years ago- and facing financial difficulties, she has remained focused on her education, supported and encouraged by her mother and family.

Read more...

The Elitist Turn in Cultural Studies

 

What do they know of Kathakali, Who they only Kathakali knows? Mistaken Modernities in Kerala

Umar Nizar

umarThe cultural ecosystem in southern India, has been at the forefront of heralding an Indic future, from APJ Abdul Kalam on the Veena to TM Krishna performing live at the beaches of Kerala and TN, the southern matrices of intermeshed artistic borrowings have helped create a superstructural buklwark. This is supposed to keep alive the notion of an unending, continuous tradition whose flame has to be preserved at any cost for sustenance of tolerant notions of the Upanisadic 'Vasudaiva Kudumakom' as well as some sort of Harappan humanism.

The concept of 'invention of tradition' as propounded by Eric Hobsbawm and articulated in the modern revivalist efforts to claim an 'in order to have been' future anterior temporal status for South Indian cultural (Bharatanatyam, Kathakali, Kutiyattom, Carnatic music) , political (Tamil Cinema, Dravidian rhetoric), aesthetic (Akam-Puram classifications of Sangham literature) and linguistic forms (Malayalam as classical language) forms the locus of this study. How much of the de facto classical in modern south India, such as the classical status of Malayalam and its cultural ecosystem comprising Kathakali, Kutiyattom, Mohiniyattom etc, is classical at least in a Foucauldian sense, stamps of credibility from global arbiters such as UNESCO notwithstanding?

Read more...

Save Nation! Save Constitution!!

 

On March 4, 2020, hundreds of Dalit, Adivasi, Muslim and Christian minority groups and leaders from different parts of India assembled in the country's capital to condemn and peacefully protest the imposition of unconstitutional Citizenship Amendment Act through the implementation of the NRC and NPR, countrywide. The BJP's election manifesto in the general elections of 2019 promised to implement the NRC across India. This was reaffirmed on 19 November 2019, by the Home minister Amit Shah in the Rajya Sabha.

4th march

The unleashing of violence by anti-social elements under the political backing on the citizens of the nation, and particularly the women from marginalised religious and caste communities around the country and particularly in South East and North East Delhi and central public universities, viz. Aligarh Muslim University, Jamia Milia Islamia and JNU, have led to a state of unprecedented insecurity among the people. The Government's move to carry out the NRC has already claimed several human lives and property, causing colossal damage and lives and country's exchequer, which stand to be assessed with objectivity. The citizens, especially the marginalised minorities fail to comprehend the necessity for this irresponsible and anti-people, anti-marginalised, anti-minority move of the Government of India, after having been voted to power twice by the very people now being targeted. In response to an RTI query, the Prime Minister's Office attributed the validity of CAA to Section 3 of the Citizenship Act 1955.

Read more...

Tribals Boycott Census and National Population Register (NPR)

 

Neetisha Xalxo

Tribal groups in a meeting in the Indian Social Institute, Delhi on 23rd February 2020 expressed their concern that the Indian government is determined to mark Tribals as Hindu. And with the same agenda only mainstream religions are mentioned in the census 2020. Sarna, Koytur and other Tribals' religions have got no place in the column for religions in the census. As a result the Tribal's religious identity is in dire danger. Therefore there will be no other option than identifying Scheduled Tribe as Hindus. And automatically this country will be identified as a Hindu majoritarian state.

trbials against caa

This step of government is a serious attack on the diverse culture of India. Consequently the indigenous communities of this country will lose their identity.

Read more...

Other Related Articles

Serious Men - Not so Serious about Dalit Realities
Monday, 19 October 2020
Neeraj Bunkar The recently released ‘Serious Men’ is an Indian Hindi language comedy drama film directed by Sudhir Mishra. The film is based on a book of the same name by Manu Joseph. This movie... Read More...
Storming Libraries, ‘Achhe Din’ and the New Education Policy
Tuesday, 04 August 2020
N Sukumar and Shailaja Menon The NEP 2020 has been rolled out amidst the Corona pandemic with the grandiose dreams of unleashing India's potential as a world teacher (Vishwaguru). Ironically, a few... Read More...
Presidency University engages with Dr. Ambedkar
Sunday, 02 August 2020
Ekalavya Ravidas The historic Hindu College of Calcutta, later named as Presidency College and currently known as Presidency University, has conventionally been an academic space almost exclusively... Read More...
A reply to Mr Katju
Wednesday, 22 July 2020
  Archana Sigh & Arvind Mr Markandey Katju in an article for FirstPost worried about the cause of Scheduled Castes, saying reservations are psychological crutches for them and the caste... Read More...
Eklavya and Karna: An Understanding of Discrimination against Marginalised in Indian Education System
Monday, 11 May 2020
Ritu Mahabharata and Ramayana are considered as the biggest epics (Mahakavya) of India. These are back in popular discussion with the reruns of their TV serials on Doordarshan amid the Covid-19... Read More...

Recent Popular Articles

Storming Libraries, ‘Achhe Din’ and the New Education Policy
Tuesday, 04 August 2020
N Sukumar and Shailaja Menon The NEP 2020 has been rolled out amidst the Corona pandemic with the grandiose dreams of unleashing India's potential as a world teacher (Vishwaguru). Ironically, a few... Read More...