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New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal found himself on the back foot on Wednesday when several of his claims targeting Finance Minister Arun Jaitley with regard to the CBI’s alleged raid in his office were disputed by the Centre and some legal experts.
Targeting secretary Rajendra Kumar Singh, CBI officials swooped on Kejriwal’s office at the Delhi Secretariat over a 2002 corruption case, triggering a string of angry responses from the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader who took office in February 2015, seizing Rs 2.4 lakh and documents related to three immovable properties from Kumar’s official residence.
Here are some facts that expose Kejriwal’s stance:
- ‘Delhi government has no jurisdiction over DDCA’
Centre on Wednesday disputed Kejriwal’s claim that that the CBI raided his office in search of a Delhi District and Cricket Association (DDCA) file related to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley saying that the state government has no jurisdiction over the cricket body.
The real reason for the raid, Kejriwal alleged on Tuesday, was a report of the commission that probed the affairs of DDCA, which he alleged was a den of corruption. Jaitley had been involved for a long time with the DDCA, he said.
“They wanted the file of DDCA… Jaitley figures in it. They came looking for that file,” he told reporters on Tuesday, adding that he was about to order a commission of inquiry into the DDCA scam.
Disputing the claim a senior government functionary reportedly said, “The cricket body is registered as a company and, therefore, comes under the jurisdiction of Registrar of Companies. Only a politician with authoritarian mindset can claim to have the competence to investigate affairs of companies.”
Besides, there is no reason why even after the CBI raid he cannot order the probe into the DDCA scam.
— Dr. Munish Raizada (@DrMunishRaizada) December 16, 2015
- CBI’s raid was legal
Kejriwal’s allegation that the CBI raiding team entered his chambers and rummaged through his papers without informing him in advance were questioned by legal experts who say the agency was not legally bound to do so.
CBI lying. My own office raided. Files of CM office are being looked into. Let Modi say which file he wants?
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) December 15, 2015
Kejriwal tweeted on Tuesday that the CBI should have shared its information with him first about his secretary Rajender Kumar.
According to legal experts, had the CBI informed Kejriwal about the raid, it would have violated Article 14 of the Constitution, opening the possibility of the suspect being forewarned and thus giving him an unlikely advantage over the probe agency.
“Where there are allegations of an offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 against a public servant, whether high or low, whether decision-maker or not, an independent investigation into such allegations is of utmost importance and unearthing the truth is the goal,” the Supreme Court has ruled.
- ‘CBI can’t raid honest AAP’
Following the raid, Kejriwal said that the CBI should not have raided the office of the Delhi Chief Minister who hailed from an ‘honest’ party like AAP. First of all, CBI has clarified that it did not raid his office. Secondly, even if the CBI has indeed raided his office, the AAP leader who claims to be heading a non-corrupt party should not be worried and have faith in his and his government’s much vaunted ‘honesty’.
Del CM @ArvindKejriwal was hailed as `Crusader agnst corruption'. Why protest raid on offr CBI probing for graft after taking search warrant
— GAURAV C SAWANT (@gauravcsawant) December 15, 2015
Arvind presents Rajendar as epitome of honesty. CBI finds incriminating evidence. Better to allow courts to judge instead of politicising.
— Rahul Kanwal (@rahulkanwal) December 15, 2015
- Apparent contradiction in his stand
In 2012 when Kejriwal was still an anti-corruption activist had said that if CBI announced on the front page of a newspaper that it would raid a person, then it would not be successful. Now when he’s entered the corridors of power, he says the exact opposite.
While the AAP leader wants the CBI to be independent, he expects CBI to give him a prior warning about its operations.
Check out the two tweets below contradicting Kejriwal’s stand:
If CBI had any evidence against Rajender, why didn't they share it wid me? I wud hv acted against him(2/2)
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) December 15, 2015
"In India, to be born as a man is a crime, to question a woman is an atrocious crime, and this all because of those women who keep suppressing men in the name of feminism."
Feminism, a worldwide movement that started to establish, define and defend equal rights for women in all sections- economically, politically, and socially. India, being a patriarchal society gives a gender advantage to the men in the society thus, Indian feminists sought to fight against the culture-specific issue for women in India. Feminism itself is nothing but a simple movement that pursues equal rights for women (including transwomen) and against misogyny both external and internal. It states nowhere that women should get more wages than men, that women deserve more respect than men, that's pseudo-feminism.
Pseudo feminists state that women deserve more respect and rights, any other gender deserves no respect. They feel that women should be the ones ruling the world and at higher positions. When feminism takes a turn for extremities it becomes pseudo-feminism and people who label themselves as feminists will bash anyone who speaks against even the wrongdoings of a woman. They'll bash women who're wife and sisters for not speaking up and support any women criticizing political leaders even if it's completely irrational. This is where hypocrisy and pseudo-feminism merge with each other.
They take advantage of the rights given to women to protect themselves to threaten other genders. The rights given to women are supposed to make them feel reassured that they can reach out to the judiciary if their rights are being hampered not to threaten to make the victim sound like the culprit.
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Indian Feminist Movement has made significant progress however, even in the modern world women are still unsafe and are discriminated against when it comes to getting a job, land ownership, and access to education. While filling the official papers it is still asked "Wife of /Daughter of:….."
People in India still continue the practice of sex-selective abortion, abandoning the girl child, not letting girl child study instead they should learn household chores, they are seen as a burden to the family. Such injustices make feminism such an important movement, gender equality is worth fighting for to create a safe environment for women. Feminists over the years have been criticized for focusing on the rights of privileged women and not giving equal representation to poorer and lower caste women, which has led to separate caste-specific feminist organizations and movements.
Some notable milestones in the Feminist Movement
- Raja Ram Mohan Roy campaigned against Sati Pratha (practice in which a widow sacrificed herself by sitting atop her deceased husband's funeral pyre) and child marriage
- Savitribai Phule started the first school for girls at Bhidewada in Pune city in 1848.
- In 1972, SEWA, the biggest trade union for women was set up by Ela Bhatt for women working in the informal sector.
- The Chipko Movement was launched and led by women in 1973.
- #MeToo movement against sexual harassment and abuse was started in 2006 and revived in the year 2015.
People in India still continue the practice of sex-selective abortion, abandoning the girl child, not letting girl child study instead they should learn household chores, they are seen as a burden to the family.Unsplash
Feminism is often misunderstood as pseudo-feminism and hence, becomes the target for public hatred and is accused of wronging other genders under the façade of feminism. It is misunderstood by Indians as female domination instead of gender equality. Indian society and Indian feminists believe that only men are perpetrators of a heinous crime like rape and they refuse to even recognize the men who say they were raped and it's the toxic masculinity in the society that believes how can a woman rape a man? Reality is different from what we believe, women can be the perpetrator too, women threaten to file a case of domestic violence, or sexual assault against innocent people just to fulfill their ego.
Thankfully feminism and pseudo feminism are two separate concepts and feminism is just about equality and not judgment. Indian society and feminists actually need to understand the difference between the two and stop tarnishing the Feminist Movement as a whole.
Keywords: Feminism, World, India, Pseudo-Feminism, Gender
Kerala is a land of many good things. It has an abundance of nature, culture, art, and food. It is also a place of legend and myth, and is known for its popular folklore, the legend of Yakshi. This is not a popular tale outside the state, but it is common knowledge for travellers, especially those who fare through forests at night.
The legend of the yakshi is believed to be India's equivalent of the Romanian Dracula, except of course, the Yakshi is a female. Many Malayalis believe that the Yakshi wears a white saree and had long hair. She has a particular fragrance, which is believed to be the fragrance of the Indian devil-tree flowers. She seduces travellers with her beauty, and kills them brutally.
Yakshi idol in Veroor, Sri Dharamashastha temple Image source: wikimedia commons
The Yakshi is believed to live in a palm tree which can appear like a palace. Victims are taken here before they are killed. Travellers on highways are often advised not to stop near heavily forested areas, or speak to anyone who closely resembles a Yakshi. Some believe she can change form, while other hold to the belief that she doesn't. after securing her victim, the only trace left behind is body parts like hair, nails, and teeth.
They say, like other ghosts, a Yakshi's feet will not touch the ground. This is something to look out for. Mysterious deaths have been reported across the rural areas in Kerala, and all these have been attributed to the legend.
Keywords: Legends, Yakshi, Urban legend, Ghost, Kerala, Myth, Vampire
The LGBTQ+ acronym stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and others. In India LGBTQ+ community also include a specific social group, part religious cult, and part caste: the Hijras. They are culturally defined either as "neither men nor women" or as men who become women by adopting women's dress and behavior. Section 377 of the India Penal code that criminalized all sexual acts "against the order of nature" i.e. engaging in oral sex or anal sex along with other homosexual activities were against the law, ripping homosexual people off of their basic human rights. Thus, the Indian Supreme Court ruled a portion of Section 377 unconstitutional on 6th September 2018.
But the question is, "was India always against homosexuality"? Has the concept of homosexuality being unnatural existed forever? No, in Indian history and Hinduism homosexuality has never been an offense, in fact in several instances it has been depicted how people embraced their identity, be it sexual identity or gender identity. Section 377 was brought to India by the British in 1862, while India was colonized. Even after the Independence, it was only in 2018 that the Supreme Court ruled it as irrational and illogical.
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Homosexuality in Ancient India
When Supreme Court decriminalized homosexuality in India, there was an uproar about it being a western ideology and liberalism. But in reality, homosexuality has existed since the time of the Vedas. The Gay and Lesbian Vaishnava Association (GALVA) researched and discovered that it was around 3102 B.C. (during the Vedic Age) that homosexuality or non-normative sexual identity was recognized as "Tritiya Prakriti", or the third nature. Ancient India not only made mentions of homosexuality but accepted it as well.
Hinduism is the most vastly followed religion in India. Hinduism does not explicitly mention homosexuality however it does contain a homosexual theme and characters in its text. There have been various instances in our scriptures and texts that have introduced us to LGBT+ characters such as the androgynous form of Shiva and Parvati Ardhanariswara meaning "the half-female lord". One of the most popular and ancient texts on sexuality, eroticism, and emotional fulfillment of life, "Kamasutra" has a complete chapter dedicated to homosexuality and homosexual sex. Numerous Hindu sculptures and temples have statues depicting homosexual activities.
Numerous Hindu sculptures and temples have statues depicting homosexual activities. Facebook
Our Mughals were Queer
Mughals are often seen under the light of cruelty, rigid ethics, nobility, and polygamy. Simultaneously, Mughals are also the ones credited for the emergence of Sufism, abolished jizya tax, love beyond religion, classes, and gender.
In the Baburnama written in memoirs of our very first Mughal ruler Muhammad Babur, several instances documented Babur's infatuation and affection towards a teenage boy named Baburi. We also have multiple Persian couplets as evidence of Babur's affection for Baburi. Mughals engaged in homosexuality and pederasty, and they believed that later was a form of "pure love".
But as time passed homosexuality was suppressed more and more though people practiced it in secret if revealed they were punished. According to the Fatwa-e-Alamgiri Sharia-based text of the Mughal Empire, there is a common set of punishments for homosexuality, which could include 50 lashes for a slave, 100 for a free infidel, or death by stoning for a Muslim.
British Raj and Independence of India
In 1862, Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that criminalized homosexual sex came into force. Even after Independence in 1947, the section remained a part of the Indian Constitution. There were protests all over the country to give people of the LGBT+ community basic human rights but it was not until 2018 that The Supreme Court of India ruled the portion of Section 377 has unconstitutional and struck it off. One judge said the landmark decision would "pave the way for a better future.". With Section 377 gone are LGBT+ people allowed to fall in love freely? No, people are still afraid to love because of the stigma in our society when it comes to homosexuality; they are seen as lesser humans.
ALSO READ: Significant Support for Rights for LGBTQ+
Although the Supreme Court has decriminalized homosexual activities, same-sex marriage remains illegal in the country. Homophobia is still prevalent in India, and homosexual children would rather commit suicide than come out to society with their true identity, that's how harsh of a world we live in. Lacking support from family, society, or police, many gay rape victims do not report the crimes. In 1977, writer and Indian mathematician Shakuntla Devi published "The World of Homosexuals". It was the first study in the Indian context; the book contains interviews with homosexual men set in the years of Emergency. She wrote, "rather than pretending that homosexuals don't exist it is time we face the facts squarely in the eye and find room for homosexual people." We've had small victories in our fight against homophobia and getting LGBT+ community the rights they deserve as humans, but we still have a long and exhausting fight ahead of us.