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Roma community to officially be a part of Indian diaspora?

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New Delhi: The 20-million strong Roma community spread across 30 countries as Indian diaspora may soon get India’s official recognition title. This comes as a direct result of the recommendations initiated in a conference by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Antar Rashtriya Sahayod Parishad (ARSP).

After External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj stated that the people of the Roma community, whose ancestors are believed to have migrated some 1,500 years ago, were children of India, an international conference here ended with a recommendation to recognise them as part of the Indian diaspora.

You are the children of India who migrated and lived in challenging circumstances in foreign lands for centuries. Yet you maintained your Indian identity,” Sushma Swaraj said while inaugurating the three-day International Roma Conference and Cultural Festival 2016 here earlier this month.

“A strong 20-million Roma population is spread over 30 countries encompassing West Asia, Europe, America and Australia,” she said.

Romas are said to be descendants of Dom, Banjara, Gujjar, Sansi, Chauhan, Sikligar, Dhangar and other nomadic groups from northwest India.

According to some scholars, the first migration followed the invasion of Alexander the Great who carried ironsmiths skilled in making weapons in large numbers in the 5th century BC.

An introductory paper released ahead of the conference organised by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Antar Rashtriya Sahayod Parishad (ARSP) said that many Roma scholars, anthropologists and historians researching their origins have approved their roots in India.

“When the Greek scholar Paspati heard the Roma call the Cross Trushul under the clear sky of Constantinople, he realised it refers to Trishul, the trident of Shiva, the god of cosmic dance. Long last, here was their origin,” ICCR president Lokesh Prasad said in his keynote address at the conference.

“The Roma scholar Dr Vania of Paris called his people ‘Ramno Chave’ or sons of Rama,” he said.

Chandra told reporters that even today these people use words like naak (nose), kaan (ear) and aakh (eyes).

These people are now known variously as “Zigeuner” in Germany, “Tsyiganes” or “Manus” in France, “Tatara” in Sweden, “Gitano” in Spain, and “Tshingan” in Turkey and Greece, “Tsigan” in Russia, Bulgaria and Romania and “Gypsies” in Britain.

However, these people have not been accepted by society in various parts of the world and continue to face persecution of various types. They continue to live on the fringes of urban centres.

“Perhaps the most devastating persecution of the Romani occurred during World War II when they were among the first targets of Nazi atrocities, according to the BBC,” the introductory paper says.

“An estimated two million Romani died in concentration camps and through other means of extermination, even unethical medical experiments.”

According to a paper presented at the conference by Valery Novoselsky, vice president and commissioner of culture of the Serbia-based World Roma Organisation, prominent personalities of the Roma community include Yul Brynner, Charlie Chaplin, Michael Caine and Elvis Presley.

While film and stage actor Brynner, of Russian origin, started his adventurous life playing guitar in Romany circles and working as a trapeze artist in circus, Chaplin was born in a Gypsy caravan in the British West Midlands and not Walworth, London, as was believed, according to Novoselsky.

On actor Michael Caine, he stated: “Born Maurice Joseph Micklewhite, it was a tradition of his Romanichel family to call the first-born son Maurice.”

Elvis Presley’s ancestors went to the US from Germany in the 18th century and their original surname was Pressler.

“They were part of the Sinti people commonly known as ‘Black Dutch’, also called ‘Chicanere’ and ‘Melungeons,” Novoselsky stated.

“Roma people are an Indian nation, the autochthonous territory of southeastern and western Europe, but also in other parts of the world, with all attributes that make them a special national entity,” Jovan Damjanovic, president of the World Roma Organisation, said at the conclusion of the New Delhi conference.

“We would like to be treated as the Indian diaspora and can make a contribution to our country of origin’s growth,” he added.

So, can the Romas be seen as part of the Indian diaspora?

“The conference was meant to create further awareness globally about the Romas and provide useful pointers towards developing educational and scientific structures and help in finding solutions for challenges being faced by the Roma community across the world,” said Vikas Swarup, spokesman of the external affairs ministry under which the ICCR falls.

“The conference has made certain recommendations to the government. The government is currently in the process of evaluating those recommendations.” (Aroonim Bhuyan, IANS)

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“If Jinnah is secular than Laden is the world’s best democrat”, Ahmar Mustikhan

The recent emotional reunion between Kulbhushan Jadhav and his wife and mother has garnered enough global attention.

Ahmar Mustikhan has come in for full support of Kulbhushan Yadav and his family
Ahmar Mustikhan has come in for full support of Kulbhushan Yadav and his family

NEW DELHI: In a recent Facebook video, Ahmar Mustikhan has communicated his views on the recent meeting of Kulbhushan Yadav with his wife Chetna and mother Avanti. Mustikhan is a renowned writer, analyst, and veteran Baloch journalist. He is also the founder of a non-profit organisation known as ’American Friends of Balochistan’. Through this organization, Mustikhan expresses his views on atrocities of Pakistani army been hammered on Baloch people.

Kulbhushan Jadav is an Indian national, who is been sentenced to death by the Pakistani Army court.. Wikileaks
Kulbhushan Jadav is an Indian national, who is been sentenced to death by the Pakistani Army court. Wikileaks

Kulbhushan Yadav is an Indian national, who is been sentenced to death by the Pakistani Army court. The recent emotional reunion between Kulbhushan Jadhav and his wife and mother has garnered enough global attention due to the mental torcher experienced by both the ladies at the Pakistani foreign office. The cold-shouldered response from Pakistan’s side was fiercely condemned by the Indian people and called it a violation of the human rights of the women. Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj even called it a “propaganda weapon” used by Pakistan.

MustiKhan in his video referred Pakistan as “Chapal Chor Pakistan” (Slipper thief Pakistan) because Pakistan’s foreign office had confiscated the slippers of Kulbhushan’s wife on the pretext of security concern. The women were even asked to remove their mangalsutra, bindi, and bangles for the same reason. Later on, Pakistani media didn’t let any stone unturned by harassing both the women and calling them murderer’s wife and mother.

Also Read: Clerics help Pakistan pedophiles target minor Hindu, Christian girls

On this basis, Mustikhan viewed that a Hindu or an Indian can never get Justice from the hands of Pakistan. To support his views, he quoted a historic event of 1927 which is related to a Hindu Marwari merchant, Raj Shivratan Chandraratan Mohatta. The merchant had built a very splendid mansion in the love of his ailing wife and named it ‘Mohatta Palace’ and was considered as the most beautiful residence of Karachi at that time. But Muhammad Ali Jinnah got his eyes on his house and forced him to vacate it. Soon, the house was taken over and turned into Pakistan’s first foreign office. After the capital was relocated to Islamabad from Karachi, the mansion was transferred to Jinnah’s sister, Fatima Jinnah. So, this was the case of the first foreign office of Pakistan, as stated by Ahmar Mustikhan.

According to MustiKhan, the Indian people who crib about Narendra Modi are directly supporting the views of Pakistani Generals and militants. These are the same army generals who have the blood of millions of innocent people on their hands.  When Modi was elected as the Prime Minister of India, some people called him as the “Butcher of Gujarat”. MustiKhan also denounces the view that Kulbhushan Yadav and Ajmal Kasab are similar offenders, as claimed by the Pakistani media. But he openly challenges the Pakistani government regarding any proof related to Yadav’s case, whereas Kasab’s heinous act was captured live on CCTV cameras. Here, MustiKhan openly exposes the double face strategy of Pakistan.

Also see: Ahmar Mustikhan views on Kulbhushan Yadav’s meeting with his mother and wife

MustiKhan even said, “If Jinnah is secular (as people says in Pakistan) than Laden is the best Democrat.” With his all these efforts, he is trying to make people aware of the war crimes against the people of Balochistan and has even requested the Indian people to support his cause of peace and harmony.