The Obfuscation Game

Normally when the Army is called in to maintain order in the immediate neighborhood of Kolkata, police personnel are injured, places of worship are desecrated, shops of a particular religious community are targeted for looting, and communities escape their home in fear of violence we would consider it to be headlines/breaking news-worthy. Perhaps not as earth-shaking as Shiney Ahuja’s maid withdrawing rape accusations or Formula 1 racing coming to India, but definitely worth front page real estate. Yet if I look at the home pages of NDTV and IBN and TOI (at the time of writing), I find not one mention of these events.

A search on Google news on “Deganga” throws up a handful of articles (thirty one at moment of writing) in mainstream media, and an overwhelming majority of these are so deliberately vague that they sound like a parent trying to explain to a nine-year old kid where babies come from. We are told about the Army staging flag marches (one might think this is a rather regular occurrence in a state like Bengal deserving only a passing mention), groups of people (my friend Rimi told me that’s how the local Bangla papers reported it) fighting each other over a “local issue” , violence over ambiguous disputed structures——–like it is some small passing thing of no importance, or at least nothing as worthy of prime placement as one of the headline items I see on the page of IBN namely “Aamir Khan is India’s national treasure“.

Despite the standard fig-leafs of “one particular community”, Pioneer (and no doubt because it is well known to be right-leaning) [Link and Link] gives us the most information among mainstream media outlets. That of  dwellings being targeted by armed mobs “of a particular community” and of Hindu temples being desecrated and of the law enforcement machinery helpless and under attack from these lumpen elements, backed by the Trinamool Congress, which has necessitated the calling in of the Army. This incident is of course an extreme flare-up in a ceaseless battle of attrition raging in Bengal’s border districts where illegal migrants from across the border have altered the demographics of the region, bringing with them the culture of religious persecution that characterizes  Bangladesh, as a means of asserting their numerical and political superiority—-certainly something that deserves a little bit more seriousness than the “slanging-match between two groups of people over some triviality” angle that most mainstream media outlets are taking.

Which brings us to another question. Why this obvious shoving under the carpet? And why do media outlets talk of “communities” without taking names? One reason, many of our “liberal” friends will say, is that violence and criminal activity have no religion and hence attaching religious descriptors means giving a communal angle. Well there are two problems with this argument. First of all, it is not a universally enforced standard—the same media has no problem in citing the religion of those who murdered Ehsaan Jaffri in Gujarat or tore down the Babri Masjid. And they well should because these acts of barbarity were done in the name of religion. When gangs of football fans fight over a disputed goal, newspapers report it as “East Bengal fans clash with Mohun Bagan fans” and not “groups of people fought”.Why? Because they are clashing over a football rivalry and the cause of the conflict is defined by their club-affiliation. Similarly, when groups are clashing because of their religion, when shops are being picked out for looting because of the religious affiliation of their owners and when religious places of a particular religion are being targeted, why the hypocrisy in hiding the very basis of the selection and conflict?

Some would say that giving prominence to communal incidents have the potential of “provoking” further incidents and hence they should be downplayed. As pointed out previously, this principle of not naming principals is applied selectively. Most importantly, the job of the press is to report the truth—if “communal” riots are taking place, then suppressing the adjective is suppressing the truth. Sure the press have a responsibility—-they should not spread half-truths, conjecture without supporting evidence or use provocative, innuendo-ridden language when the atmosphere is heated but couching reports in deliberate vagueness, that too only when it is politically correct to do so, should not be approved practice.

There is of course a far greater danger when the mainstream media tries to downplay such events. That being that it strengthens extreme voices from the Hindu right, who accuse Indian mainstream media of having a strong “liberal pro-minority” bias, so ideologically rigid so as to not being averse to obfuscating or relegating to the sidelines news that does not fit into their general narrative.

And how does the Deganga reporting provide them credence?

By proving them right in at least one case.

This in turn compromises all the genuine reporting the mainstream media does (and yes they do do it) and calls into doubt their political motivations, further giving credibility to right-wing  advocacy websites and blogs, who when they write all kinds of  politically slanted, communally-colored “eyewitness reports” can say, with some degree of legitimacy, “Look guys this is the genuine news. You saw how the mainstream media plays down incidents involving Hindus. Well we do not, that’s why only we have the story and no one else. Come here sirs and madams for the alternative truth”.

And once this credibility is established, the distinction between mainstream media and extreme media is blurred and a dangerous equivalence established, with each side being shown to be as colored as the other.

[Note: People, and you know who you are, are told not to post links to blog-posts (or copy-paste entire posts) or report ” facts” regarding the incident. Not a comment on the “truthiness” [apologies to Colbert] of your comment, but my comment-space is neither for propaganda nor for reporting. Its is, to repeat, the private comment space of a private blog and not an “open medium for expression”.  People interested in Deganga can Google it and reach your pages. Any links or copy-pastes will be removed. Unlike Sepia Mutiny, I do not have interns so please do not ask me to spend time cleaning up after you.]

145 thoughts on “The Obfuscation Game

  1. Thought provoking post in the morning Arnab. Interestingly the first google ad says – How to convert to Islam.

  2. wonder if the media will refer to DABANGG fans and K-JO die hards clashing as “Groups of people” fighting! 😦

  3. Well writen and thoght proviking

  4. Latest updates on the Deganga riots at the newspaper-link below.

    The Pioneer’s Dr.Chandan Mitra and Kanchan Gupta deserve kudos for not obfuscating the facts.

    Such “religious cleansing” and pogroms are unprecedented in Bengal’s history. Or are they?

    [GB adds: Kindly read what I wrote on in the post regarding posting links. Also, kindly read the post because you posted the exact link I have in the post.]

  5. Bengal Voice,

    Kindly read what I wrote on in the post regarding posting links. Also, kindly read the post because you posted the exact link I have in the post.]

  6. I challenge the liberal [expletive removed] who write reams when you write about ground zero mosque and flotilla incident to comment on this post

    [GB adds: No I will not accept your challenge to publish the comment in its entirety. Because hate speech is not allowed here]

  7. Disturbing… to say the least.
    Any idea how the hindu-bengalis, living out of Bengal, can act to have a tangible effect in this matter?

  8. The problem is this concept of who is liberal? Liberalism is supposed to mean, among other things, equality under LAW. People who talk of “taking actions in context”, “misguided youth” and other such terms are not liberals in any sense – they are apologists for gundagiri. Anyways, shocked to hear about this happening. At the same as time as Amir’s being crowned India’s treasure, no less.

  9. Of course, why not? had it been done by the “other” community, you would have allowed them to spew venom here, would you have not?

    I understand your compulsion, you have to be in the good books of the main stream media, have to sell your books – so it is better for you to lick the ass of the anti-Hindu, MSM. Good for you, good for your book.

  10. “One reason, many of our “liberal” friends will say, is that violence and criminal activity have no religion and hence attaching religious descriptors means giving a communal angle.”

    True and very well written. We know these people. People who will say that Islam had nothing to do with 9/11 (yes, Buddhism had), but will magnify any news of the opposite type, i.e., if the victims would have been Muslims. NDTV dare not say that Muslims vandalized Hindu places of worship. Sugarika will castrate anyone who writes that. 🙂

  11. yourfan2 – right, Islam had also nothing to do with Bali, London 7/7, Madrid,M Mumbai 26/11 was a Mossad / RAW conspiracy, Mumbai 26/7 were children playing with stoves, Godhra 25/2 was an internal job etc etc

    As I said, had the opposite happened, all hell would have broken loose.

    Just watch how NDTV is castigating TJ Joseph !! All the MSM has become “Saudi Secular”, rich with Saudi money, they have sold their souls. But do not worry, we are still not dead, we will continue to speak the truth and propagate the truth, expose the media

  12. The question is, why does the media do it? Not their ostensible stated reasons (which you showed don’t make sense), but the actual reasons — you stopped short of an analysis of them.

    Secondly, since you seem to say that only one direction is “politically correct”, doesn’t this validate the claim that there does exist a bias? 🙂

    Finally, what can those of us who are not extreme do about this? In an environment where simply observing the existing bias gets you called “extreme”, “fundamentalist” etc. (which you too will be, BTW, like it or not, true or not), is the only course to therefore simply ignore it and move on?

  13. Ano,

    Valid questions.

    “In an environment where simply observing the existing bias gets you called “extreme”, “fundamentalist” etc. (which you too will be, BTW, like it or not, true or not)….

    And on top of that I shall get comments like—>”I understand your compulsion, you have to be in the good books of the main stream media, have to sell your books – so it is better for you to lick the ass of the anti-Hindu, MSM. Good for you, good for your book.” [Refer to comment a few comments above]

  14. Some Nostalgic Moments September 9, 2010 — 5:04 am

    Are we not reacting too much too early…just wait for a day or two when in a nearby village “people from a particular community” do the same to the “most pious religion” followers….then we will see the news being made and reported… google is showing 98 news items….GB ur words are being taken seriously btw….so congrats….

  15. Thanx GB, for this update. Truly atrocious the way media is covering up this incident – I had no clue this was happening. Seems even the fourth estate is giving out on us. What does this leave us with now?

  16. Dear greatbong,

    Yes, local bengali media is writing with the term “a group of people”, or “a gang of lumphen” instead of mentioning the name of religious communities. Structure is also mentioned as a small club building or “a sitting place for “adda”.
    For your kind information, similar flare up was regularly happening nearby bus stand and railway station of Chandrakona Road at the beginning of August, 2010. It even occurs now also quite frequently.
    One thing is common here that people comes from Bangladesh and started living on government lands nearby bus stands and railway stations. Their next target is building a place of worship after developing a “para” of having 10-15 families.

  17. Some Nostalgic Moments September 9, 2010 — 5:19 am

    God i am totally in shock….i thought u were joking and may be over-reacting….but seriously the news is so vague….only hint of hindus being victim comes from “Advani calls up Chidambaram, expresses concern over violence in WB”….man are we still in India,a hindu majority nation….why is the whole world so afraid of Islam…..

  18. Hi GB,

    U have not mentioned the details clearly and google doesn’t throw up much results.

    I understand your point, but still I want to know more about the incedent.

  19. @BIIIG FAN,

    The two links posted in the article to Pioneer are the best links you will find on the topic.

  20. Mainstream media will get its chance soon. Two years back,on this very same forum, I remember predicting these events beginning around 2014. I guess its better that a earlier than planned exposure, will allow the Bengali Hindus a better chance to handle this while they are still in sizeable majority (which obviously is decreasing every year).

    You can blog about these regularly from now on, like your movie and cricketing posts.

    Also, when the next one happens, do give a link to one of those “right wing” blogs…. just for laughs.

  21. Don Ayan de Marco September 9, 2010 — 6:07 am

    Sonar Bangla going ‘Article 370’ way?

  22. When UGC gave out notice against ponytail management, none of the major media houses dared to report or discuss it! Even a joker like ponytail has so much influence!!

    Its failure of mainstream media, that despite CWG scam, Manmohan and sonia are retaining their posts.

    They are not scared of media, Only chappals scare them.

  23. See, no “liberal” has dared commented on this article. They simply do not have the balls. But wait, let 1, just 1 from the other community get injured, and they will all drive down in hordes like vultures 🙂

  24. Sire,

    Just wanted to say this

    You are the national treasure.

  25. We need someone like Gopal Patha to teach the minorities a lesson!

  26. correction: lately, media houses have reported the UGC Notice except TOI.

  27. Sheesh I thought stuff like this happened only in Singapore. Thanks to a timely forward I came to know of this issue.

    There are still no major news reports on this. Indian Express does have a report on it, but again it points to the “local dispute”. A mis- or under-statement, if there ever was one.

  28. Re Anurag: We need someone like Gopal Patha to teach the minorities a lesson!

    After living in SIngapore I often thought that Lee Kuan Yew should be brought in to help solve our country’s problems. I’m sure he’d have a nice brute force strategy to deal with these kinds of issues.

  29. The mainsream TV Chanel that does not toe the “left-liberal pro-some communities bias” is Times Now…Everybidy here sould give it a try..Have you guys ever seen the commentspace on the UK Telegraph blogsite?? Going by the comments the people over there seems to have had enough of a particular community…A few weeks earlier a book called “Deutschland schafft sich ab” was launched here in Germany
    (Germany abolishes/dismantles itself) It talks of of rapid Islamification of Germany and how it is creating massiv social and financial problems..The book sold over 70,000 in its first week.More than 18 percent of the Germans are ready to vote for the author if he were to stand in an election..Wait how the gunpowder keg explodes in India as soon as US and NATO withdraw from Af-Pak

  30. Wowwww…GB kudos to u…u have actually named the gorilla in the room this is indeed the biggest problem with MSM indian media at the moment….this “saudi secular” media is slowly strangling hindus in india..slowly but surely…dont know if u will allow this but i gotta let everyone know..if u want to know the real situation visit the following sites:

    overall –

    in detail – google hindusamhati

    i have not posted links but feel its my duty to let people know about these sites to give them an alternative to MSM…both sites are quite balanced and truthful

  31. Thanks GB for doing a post on this. I was following this news since yesterday in Pioneer.

  32. There is no way out. West Bengal will soon be going the East Bengal when Islam will rule us. We are a doomed race-because liberalism is the pill we only take

  33. Have a question :

    1) If the religion of the 2 bodyguards who assassinated Indira Gandhi had not been made public and their motives (Operation Bluestar) not been allowed to spread … would the 1984 riots been as widespread and violent as they were ? Remember 1984 was way before any news channel or internet. Doordarshan and AIR was strictly under Govt of India. ? If obfuscation was practiced in right earnest … could the situation been averted ? The counter argument being Congress MPs were leading the riots and using govt machinery and therefore the govt was not interested in controlling the mobs and thus they did not bother about hiding the facts about Beant Singh and partner. But I am sure … the Sikhs who were killed by the mobs … will wonder that maybe if the names and religions of the killers was not revealed … it would have done a greater good. After all Indira Gandhi was dead and the 2 would have been hung anyways. Some innocent lives could have been saved had obfuscation been practiced.

  34. Suddenly your comment space becomes kosher after you have released a book and became more popular in MSM….

    Agreed to an extent that its your private space but then do you hand out a list of Do’s and Dont’s when you invite people for a get-together … It’s an unwritten rule that you should not litter somebody’s private space .. But in case they do the host just smiles and clean it afterwards…

    Its you who said that the most interesting feature of your blog is your lively comment space and you are the one who is “killing” it !!!

  35. Kudos to GB for highlighting this. Indian express has reported that a 200-strong army contingent is holding a flag march in Deganga because of… hold your breath… “a local dispute”! Can you beat that???

  36. GB,

    The reportage on this issue is actually very reminiscent of the old radio news days when all clashes were between a “group of people” and “another community”.

    I don’t consider myself a liberal by any means but I will play Devil’s advocate:

    1. Under-reportage of this issue is probably in the best interests of all, in balance. With Ganesh chaturthi and Durga puja around the corner, and with the Babri masjid judgment expected any day now, the religious zealots in this country are already girding their loins. Over-the-top reportage could be just the spark that blows up this tinderbox. And YES, GB, in a perfect world we would have balanced, nuanced and sensitive reportage. But until that day comes, informally suppressing (as opposed to institutionally suppressing) these incidents is perhaps the most prudent course of action.

    2. As a response to the noxious Animesh, majority communities around the world must bear a greater burden of the polite self-censorship and, yes, compromise than their minority bretheren. This applies to minority races, religions, gender, castes, nationality etc and the most civilised countries in the world exist as cosmopolitan havens only because of this new “social contract” as it were. With minority status comes greater sensitivity and, to put it bluntly- prickliness. Ask any Indian abroad. Ask your Muslim friends in India. Ask any north-Indian in Mumbai or south-Indian in Delhi. It’s universal! So rather than pretending it isn’t so, we should acknowledge it and act accordingly. Under-reporting such incidents is part of that pattern.

  37. This Lexferanda dude is totally right. I think we should all agree that unless these news are provocative and should be suppressed. Of course this also means that media should stop harping on Babri and Gujarat riots as it needlessly adds fuel to fire of jihadi propaganda. In fact I am sure that Jihadi Factories in Land Of Pure have dispensed with in house promotion material and have just got connection to NDTV, IBN etc. So in interest of fairness the suppression should be “secularized”, unless of course “new social contract” demands that innocent kaffirs be shot and blown up by soldiers of One True God&trademark;

  38. Lexferanda,

    A few points about the under-reportage. The job of the press is to tell the truth, fairly and without bias. The job of the press is not to “censor” the truth. It’s that simple. The moment we expect the press to “censor”, we open ourselves to the subjectivity of the prejudices that define those that constitute the press. For example, if two mosques had been desecrated and Muslim businesses targeted in looting, the same media channels “underreporting” would be “breaking the news” with hysteric abandon. Why? Because the suppression of truth is and will remain a subjective decision.

    Coming to the Sikh riots, it wasnt the reporting of the religion of the assassins that was responsible for the riots. Its when the most powerful man in the country justified rioting as “ground shaking”, when members of the ruling party come out in full pride calling for Sikhs to be killed and when the police are asked to look the other way and when the perpetrators are never punished. *That’s the problem.*

    And oh this “minorities should not be held to the same standards as majorities” argument flies in the face of equality of all and again introduces subjectiveness, which I think cannot be allowed in a “free and equal” (at least on paper) society. And FYI, in many of the places where the most intense violence is happening, Hindus are the “minorities” and so you want to re-consider how you phrase your sentence. [This is of course the problem when you argue for a fundamental inequality between two classes of people]

    And oh I presume you would take the US as a civilized country. Now if a bunch of “minority” people went and firebombed two churches, targetted Christian shops and families for looting creating a situation that needed the deployment of the US military about 20 miles from…say…Boston, do you think even the most liberal of media outlets (NYTimes for instance) not mention the religion or the names of the people and try to suppress the news by putting it in the inside pages?

    As I said in my post, when the press starts suppressing truth and it is patently obvious that it is, that in itself gives license to the “noxious elements” to emerge as the source of information. Once they do so, they can now say anything they want and people will believe what they say.

  39. Quite distressed to hear this, as I’ve been brought up outside Bengal and recently I’ve decided to relocate to Kolkata permanently.

    All this years I’ve maintained (and still) do that Bengal is a gone case. The districts in the state seems to be plagued with either Naxalism or Islamism.

    Naxalism will go away gradually, but Islamism will do the damage. Kashmir, Assam, Kerala and now Bengal.

    Our best chance is that some resistance develops that salvages as many districts as possible.


    Many self proclaimed “liberal” Bengalis (well that’s almost all Bengalis that have some education(sic)) leave no chance to demonize other groups that have brought up some resistance. These “liberals” forget that their forefathers were kicked out of East Pakistan (that includes my folks as well).

    It will be treat to see the reactions as the menace spreads. The maps shows that Deganga is a stone’s throw from Barasat and probably a hour from Kolkata. Deganga, then Barasat/Barrackpore, and then Dum Dum and you are in Kolkata.

    Lets see how it pans out.

  40. I would normally consider myself weel informed about Indian current affairs. The fact that I did not even hear about this incident itself points out the attitude of the media. As I speak I’m calling one of my friends at the Telegraph and ….boy those wont be kinds words ……

  41. GB,
    Please do not call it riot, riot happens when both temples and mosques are burnt, both community suffers. This is an attempt at genocide in a small area and it will be repeated in increasingly larger scale.

    But here is a thing. If media is not reporting correctly then it means that it does not serve the purpose we believe it is supposed to. Then there exists a void. Obviously, your liberal clan may not like what rises to fill the void, but it serves a need. You are a liberal, you can watch your liberal fanatics in spin-this-tv and CNN-Bring-Dynasty-In channels, not everybody can afford your luxury of watching it from a distance and writing “balanced” posts about it.

    Oh, I do understand that balance is important. Like pure milk, we have lost the stomach for pure truth, so truth should be “balanced” I guess. Un-balanced truth disturbs people, forces them to think, inspires them to ask questions to the powers-that-be and thus need not be mentioned. Liberalism, socialism, communism – all sorts of “ism” that well-fed westerners can afford to believe in are imported as holy ideals into malnourished subcontinent and in our inferiority complex affected brains they got interpreted as convenient excuse for doing nothing. Any truth that has the potential to force through this hard armor of reluctance and laziness has to be balanced out, right? So the truth kept being balanced to the point where expressing the basic survival instinct has become a matter of guilt. It is these practitioners of politics of guilt who populate the media. If an entity can not serve it’s purpose, it is redundant, all p

    One more question, when is the last time media reported something correctly? Obviously, I am not referring to the no of miscalls Salman sent to Ash’s phone. I am refering to the type of subject matter under discussion.

  42. Couple of days back I saw a picture of Mamta offering Namaz. The path Bengal has taken, it won’t be long when offering namaz won’t be a political stunt – it will be a reality.
    And all those Sens, Roys and Jees will be found only in other parts of India creating a small minority like we see the parsis today.

    My bet is on Bengal being the first state to have only Islamic parties fighting state elections among the states of JK, BH, UP, KL and AS.

  43. @Dibyo

    “I would normally consider myself weel informed about Indian current affairs. The fact that I did not even hear about this incident itself points out the attitude of the media. As I speak I’m calling one of my friends at the Telegraph and ….boy those wont be kinds words ……”

    I think your action is a good illustration of the malaise that has gripped Bengali “liberal” Hindus.

    Good that you are going to call Telegraph. But what about the situation on ground?

    Beyond a point media reporting will not matter. If we Bengalis Hindus do not have political options backed a strong stick we will cede block by block and then district by district.

    Ironically it is the Bengali “liberal” Hindus in the mainstream media (incidenatlly they predominate disproportionately vis-a-vis Bengali population) that have the lions share in brining the mainstrean media to such pass.

    However, the stage has passed where even a pro-Hindu media intervention will do any difference. Because ground situation borne of demographic reality is out of control.

    For years I’ve been hearing about this problem only from Bengali villagers fleeing to Delhi-NCR and working as housemaids and office boys (only to be branded Bangladeshis) as the problem was confided to rural hinterland.

    To be fair and give credit where it is due…I’m for the first time witnessing literate Bengalis (sorry university degrees, followed asinine one-sided “liberal” garbage does not means educated) talking about this issue.

  44. @Von Runstedt : The ground situation can change only through mass awareness and dispassionate view of matters……. And who better than the media can do that ? A good example is how Arnab raised the issue and mdae us aware of this problem and set us thinking about it. Hence that is the starting point. And dont bracket everybody as a liberal….. especially when you hardly know me …..

    I say the time has come for a strong leader to emerge from Bengal again …. another renaissance ….. call me a hopeless optimist, but I get the feeling it’s coming soon ….

  45. crap topic…want next article on quran burning or treatment of director vijay kumar

  46. @Dibyo

    “And dont bracket everybody as a liberal….. especially when you hardly know me”

    Don’t take it personally, but somehow I get a feeling we Probashis (especially those of us that have spent our lifetimes out of Bengal) have a clearer sense of this danger coming. I don’t know how to explain, but that’s how it is.

    I’m sick and tired of my Kolkatan relatives (wife’s side), friends and colleagues that presume (or pretend?) that Bengal is a secular paradise with religion of peace adherents overflowing with love and kindness for their kaffir brethren.

    My parents homes are in interiors of Nadia district (that’s where they settled after migrating to the Indian side after partition) and I used to spend my summer vacations there (2 months every year…as my father served in the Armed Forces). Though of course, now the durations of my visits are smaller, but then as an adult one is perceptive enough to see the changes.

    Lungi clad louts crowding the trains on Sealdah-Ranaghat/ Krishnanagar /Shantipur lines, openly challenging you and laughing at your helplessness as they flout all civic norms, tease womenfolks and in general nuisance to all passengers.

    “I say the time has come for a strong leader to emerge from Bengal again …. another renaissance ….. call me a hopeless optimist, but I get the feeling it’s coming soon ….”

    We can just hope and then throw our support in all forms if such an rallying point emerges.

    One message to the “liberals”…if you wish to preserve your liberty to remain “liberals” act now. Hardliners will either go down fighting or create their own safe zones. “Liberals” will not even know what hit them.

  47. Good to see awakening among you people. Just keep this passion up till 2014, when we will have a new sunrise. Ohm NaMo Namayah 🙂

    GB, I challenge you again to publish my whole post 🙂

  48. I was reading through it… did not find – Islam, muslim, or related words…Introspection?

  49. All:
    The time for talking was over a few years back (if you recall my comment series in early 2007). Now you have to ready to do your part, get in touch with me. And trust me you have your work cut out for you, and its all legal.

    How many of you here are from N. 24 Pargana district, South 24 Pargana district, Barasat Town area (imp), Dum Dum (imp), Burdwan district, Hooghly district and East Midnapore area?

    Let me know if you are interested.

  50. Thank you GB, for saying what needs to be said. It’s truly a shame that more people don’t have the testicular fortitude to call the media out on its ineptness.

  51. @ Rishi Khujur

    “How many of you here are from N. 24 Pargana district, South 24 Pargana district, Barasat Town area (imp), Dum Dum (imp), Burdwan district, Hooghly district and East Midnapore area?”

    So the areas are identified? Good. 🙂

    I’d wager majority (if not all) of Bengali posters in this blog hail from these districts. I assume posters here know how to contact you, particularly people that maybe have kinsfolk in the affected areas.

  52. very thought provoking indeed!

    well written!

  53. I agree. As a recovering leftie, I am still in denial. Shell-shocked that this is happening so close to Kolkata. Just got this latest news update from google alert. Sorry for the link dada, but please don’t delete it.

  54. @ Von Runstedt

    Any avid (and honest) observer knew where the assaults are going to come, and will come in future. The cat has always been out of the bag. The question was/is who is willing to put the proverbial ‘bell’ on it.

    And what are we willing to put on the line to achieve that.

  55. Von,
    if you wish to preserve your liberty to remain “liberals” act now.
    Liberals have long sacrificed their common sense and honesty at the alter of liberalism. That is the price you have to pay to be known as “holier-than-thou” liberal. If you try to retain your sanity and join the liberal clan, you will be another greatbong – na udhar ka na idhar ka. 🙂

    Where are the posters from Muslims-hence-secular community? Would not we get “But Islam is a peaceful religion” or “we are all Indians” or “we are all human” or any other such pearls of wisdom? Oh, I got it, we have to wait till some arrests are made (if at all) or Muslim victims are found.

  56. Read online edition of today’s Anandabazar. There is a front page heart-wrenching news about some stray jackal that died of hunger after being captured by the airport authorities, but no mention of the subject of this post. Maybe, its not a big deal after all !!

  57. Dib,
    Jackals do not have religion, so Anandabazar does not have a problem with it’s picture.

    The last time I opened their site, I happened to read an article by one of those antel directors famous for showing bare back of heroines or menstruation. He described how he found peace in Osama Bin Laden’s smile. I closed it in disgust. There is really nothing to be expected from Anandabazar except that it would continue to serve as a symobol for our deep-rooted trouble.

  58. Sadly, it’s not “fashionable” in this country to talk about the majority community, to talk about their rights and to put out screaming headlines when they are at the receiving end of nasty communal politics. If the reverse had happened, the supposed icons of broadcast media would have gone hoarse on how innocents are being “butchered” by goondas of majority community.
    Why Deganga…how many times have we seen someone talk passionately about the plight of Kashmiri Pandits…How many have ever raised their voice against the blatant flow of illegal migrants from Bangladesh that now threatens to convert Assam and large part of Begnal into an Islamic state…
    And we can’t blame any other community for the current mess…It’s Jaichands from our own community, who continue to mislead, misinterpret, and misrepresent facts, both current and historical, in the name of secularism…

  59. GB … Regarding your last comment … If the job of the press is to just report the truth without biases … it is the job of the people to react responsibly towards it … the problem is that the same news item is read and interpreted and used by people for their own benefit which is human nature and thus maybe Jack Nicholson was right when said that you handle the truth.
    We do not live in a utopian world and all elements of society are not responsible. So maybe sometimes for the greater good, some under reporting is necessary.

    Coming to the point I had raised on the 1984 Sikh riots … Rajiv Gandhi’s remark was made on 19th November … by when the rioting had reasonably subsided. Wikipedia’s time line of events say that on 31st Oct , 9 20 am was she was shot and in the 11 o clock AIR news , the religion and names of the assassins were announced. As i said , any way not much can be done when the ruling party goes ahead with a genocide / pogrom … and as deplorable an act that was … could the people have been manipulated so easily if the religion and motive of the assassins was not so openly announced ?

  60. GB … Forgot to ask you one thing … Why is this piece titled “The Obfuscation Game” and not “Underreporting of Hindus being selectively massacred by Muslims within 150 kms of Kolkata”

  61. @Prasun banerjee

    because it is a blog & not the headline of any MSM outlet. Its the content which is important here, not what tagline it comes with.


    it couldn’t have been put in a better way. Fabulous post.

  62. Excellent post !!!.
    I remember media tried to do the same thing when Godhra train burning incident happened. Then next day after the incident happened there was hardly any coverage in leading newspapers (I had no access to TV then so I cannot say about it). Train burning incident was reported in page 6/7 towards the bottom. It was hardly a 50 word news which said that 59 people burned to death etc etc. Either TOI or HT even blamed that victims for the incident as they were karsevaks coming from Ayodhya.

  63. I think this issue should be discussed with hindu religious heads/community leaders of bengal. If they get united and talk firmly abt the illegal migration of bangaldeshis, it will make a difference. But i fear, bengali hindus have no such gurus/leaders/spiritual guides and Tagore is dead long ago..

  64. Well, your post has had an effect.

    There are news posts on this

    BJP demands action on Deganga violence – IBNlive.
    More violence in Deganga, Army holds flag march – Indian express
    Army flag march continues at Deganga, WB – IBN Live
    Army out after Deganga rioting – Times of India
    Curfew as tension grips WB district – Hindu

    Granted, none of these papers mention that it is Hindu property destroyed, but it is a start.

  65. I fail to see what ‘truth’ has to do with fact. Isnt that a matter of perspective? How can we, being the readers, commentors and sole writer, discuss the media giving out the ‘truth’ when that itself is not. Arnab, fact is one thing, truth another, and journalism/reporting quite something else. As the writer of this piece, how can you comment and say that the media should report the truth. Isnt that in itself comparable to expecting perfection? Doesnt that too change with perspective? And at the end of it, isnt that what we are fighting/rioting/genociding (i know its not a word) about. To get out version of the truth out.

  66. In the last line, i meant ‘our own’ version of the truth out.

  67. You are right that hindus should be called hindus and not a group especially when they are targeted because they do not follow a certain way of life ( read islamic). the illegal migrants from our B Desh may well turn out to be our own taliban created this time by the marxists.

  68. Last para of :

    Says it all. About the psedo-secular, ‘liberal’, fundamentalism, hypocrisy and delusion. Explains the modus operandi of Suzanna A Roy, Suga Rika Ghos, NDTV and other ‘liberal’ media. Also explains why these people love to lick MF Hussians ass, but will run 100 m faster than Usain Bolt to cover someone’s face when he says something about M and M’s. Bet Anandabazar Patrika did not report that incident where a prof in Kerela had his hand cut off by people who thought he was offending I too.

    Consequently, the obfuscation game is explained.

    PS. People tended to dismiss Rishi Khujur’s warnings since 2008 about what lies ahead for Bengal, as fundamentalist tripe. Events like these vindicate him, and bolster GB’s legendary thesis: The Algebra of Infinite Fundamentalism.

  69. Malay wrote: “Report from FoxNews

    Thanks for this Malay. This is an awesome article/interview with Bengal’s only hope. The interviewer/journalist Ms.Phyllis Chesler is a veteran American author, professor and feminist.

    Unlike the Indian MSM, it appears that even the American media realises that Mr.Tapan Ghosh’s Hindu Samhati is the only viable, non-political organization working hard to protect the rights of beleaguered Hindus, especially women, in Bengal.

    I did google “Hindu Samhati” to see their latest photos and reports from Deganga on their website. Wow!! I am amazed at the passion of their youth activists.

    Bengal finally has a ray of hope.

  70. @ malay
    wow! Phyllis Chesler wrote a good one.

    @ Von
    At the end of the day, we cannot wait to educate every single pseudo liberal and pseudo secular to respond to the threat perception. They will be victims soon too and then they may self realize or not.

    We have to keep working on putting the bell on the cat with ‘what we have, and that ‘what we have’ is a very sizeable number, if we actually do some organized and coordinated work (rather than just fume).

    All skill sets are needed in this.

  71. @GB

    “not as earth-shaking as Shiney Ahuja’s maid withdrawing rape accusations or Formula 1 racing coming to India”

    –Truth hits hard when its closer to home isn’t it?

  72. One of the first responses to counter such rabid (and increasingly voilent) fanaticism is to start voting for the BJP. The BJP might not be perfect but it is the best bet we have.

  73. Do not make liberal out to be a bad word…Its a good thing.. I am a liberal.
    all it means is broad mindedness, believing in equality, freedom, tolerance..

    Now, in the garb of liberalism, some people do/say crazy things (non-liberal things, sometimes). Hell, what philosophy has that not happened to?

  74. When I asked my father why such biased reporting happens in Indian media, he said “In a road accident we, indians, always blame the heavier vehicle no matter who did the mistake. We like to support the underdog no matter what the situation is. I don’t know the reason for such behavior in Indians but it is the plague which is killing the idea of India right now.”

  75. @Sadaf,

    I think you like to see yourself as a libertarian, not a liberal.

  76. @Dib
    No, I like to see myself as a liberal. I am not a minarchist.

  77. There was one incident where Sharad Pawar remarked that he himself added one or more fictional muslim names to the list of people who were killed during one of the Mumbai blasts, so as to defuse the resulting sectarian tension.

  78. case of vanishing posts.

    [GB adds: Yes indeed. Take hate speech elsewhere.]

  79. indigestible facts = hate speech.

    very greatbong.

  80. gorgonzola rostopopolus September 10, 2010 — 7:26 pm

    @ dib
    “resulting sectarian tension” ?

    when did Hindus and Muslims become sects?

    f****ing pseudoseculars and their imitation of western terminology without knowing a f**** of what they are talking about.

  81. Yes Ashwani,

    My space. My rules. If you want to spew your digestible facts, do it on your own space. Very much “sense of entitlement”.

  82. The depth of the idiocy of the hindus, especially the bengali ones, is breathtaking. wasnt just six decades back that we had a bloody partition which resulted in the wiping out of the hindi monrity of easy bengal – official census numbers show that the hindu population of that region hss declined from abt 30% in 1947 to less than 10% now. That number undrrlines thr colossal human suffering a community had to undergo simply because they were not muslims. And here we are, within a generation of this tragedy, dumbly watching as the seeds for a repeat of the same are being sown; and mind you, a good chunk of the bengali hindus (>20%?) are east bengalis who were witnesses/victims of the original tragedy. Well, those who dont learn from history, are condemned to repeat it- i console myself by arguing that bengali hindus deserve this bengalis deserve it, after all this kind of profound stupidity should not go unpunished.
    the intriguing thing in all this is that the hindu movement in bengal was quite strong in pre-partition era. The horrors of partition which should have providef a fillip to the movement, paradoxically ended up almost destroying it. Which in itself is not neccessarily a bad thing but for the fact that it was replaced by communism, which took the hindu community to the other extreme, ie emasculating it. For those who are not aware, one of first movements of the left which inxreased its popularity among bengalis was its leading role in refugee rehabilitation, providing it a solid vote bank, the refugees. Contd.

  83. @Dib,
    Here is the reference about Sharad Pawar:

    Ironically, nothing happened after that. Nobody questioned him and nobody accused him of not following ethics. Yes, secularism and liberalism are that sacred in the educated circles of this country.

  84. @Sai,
    I tend to agree with your analysis of vote bank of the left. It was a strategy they discovered post-1971. So successful was this consolidation of vote bank, they kept allowing more and more Bangladeshis to cross the border and settle. Initially it was Hindus, but later flow became dominated by Muslims. Thus, slowly and steadily we lost North & South 24 Parganas, Nadia, Murshidabad districts. Apparently someone’s misery is some other’s vote bank.

    I have no love lost for Shiv Sena, but the way they handled the Bangladeshi illegal migrants in different localities of Mumbai and Navi Mumbai when Cong govt. refused to take action against Bangladeshis is praise worthy. That is the policy we must follow. No mercy, no consideration and for a change, no-Aparna-Sen type antelamo.

  85. To Arnab:
    I am sorry if what I am going to write violates any of the blog rules.

    To all readers (especially the Probashis):

    Stop whining and fuming. That does not help ameliorate the situation even one bit.

    If you really wish to help save what is left of Bengal, just write to Rishi Khujur at his email address (mentioned in his comment above). JUST DO IT. And I mean it seriously.

    Rishi just doesn’t talk the talk. He walks the walk. He works on it every day of his life. He is incredibly earnest and dedicated to doing what he does best.

    I am glad I wrote to Rishi 3 years ago after I met him on this very blog. And as probashis, we have made a considerable difference on the ground in Bengal. And there is a sizeable number of like-minded Probashis who have joined the effort.

    And we need more smart minds like you to work with us to protect Bengal.

    So Don’t Just Talk Idly. JUST DO IT. You will be glad you did it. Contact Rishi at: rishi_khujur[at]rediffmail[dot]com

  86. While the activities of the communists on the rehbilitation front was no doibt commendable, it was accompanied by their soul destroying act of suppressing the narrative among the refugee group of the post partition tragedy. In a cynical exploitation of the wounded psyche of this group, their anger and frustration was deflected towards issues completely irrelevant to their circumstances. Sample this, the resolutions passed by the Refugee Commitee in the fifties included a. Ending of discriminatory trade policies againsy china and ussr b. Condemning some defence ties with US. Quite a tragicomedy, isnt it? But i really fell of my chair when i read the third one- it called for the resttlement of muslims in india!

    all that being said, it really boggles my mind that the bengali hindus seem to completely erased the memory of the ethnic cleansing which resulted in lacs of deaths and uprooted millipns from their homeland of centuries. All the more shovking given that a significant portion of the bengali hindus are east bengalis (>20%?), who were its direct victims.

    coming to the post, the blogger is only saying things that many of us had known all along.

  87. @ the nutcase above who still tried to justify the news blackout

    dude u are too far gone…but one things for sure..there is justice in this..the liberal cowards who want to compromise will be the first ones to be burnt alive, chopped up, raped etc etc…cos they have let their consciousness drift…hence have lost their last defense against cold blooded genocidal mystics like what the illegal Bangladeshi migrants are…

    The hard headed right wing folk will outlive the mystics any day thanks to their awareness and and ability to fight

  88. Found this link on NDTV –

    If this is what has come to pass, we can very well expect what lays in the future of Bengal.

  89. Did anyone see this news item….Mamta did bending over backwards (…err….forward) to prove her secular credentials….

  90. Will Bengali hindus be the next dodos ?

  91. Hey guys ,
    stop worrying about Deganga go watch Dabangg .
    greatbong waiting for your review of Dabangg

  92. Once a Hezbollah chief had famously said, “We (muslims) are not fighting with you (infidels) to expect any good offer from you in return, we are fighting with you to eliminate you”

    This pretty much sums up what we “infidels” are up against.

    Though one can discard saying that this statement is coming from a terrorist, we have to wake up to the reality that majority of muslims all over the world are subconscioulsy supporting such views. Few handfull terrorists or people do not represent a religion and majority are peaceful by nature is now a cliche argument. The majority of muslims, though they might not openely be supporting, are skewed towards radical thinking of Islam’s teaching. So if you consider the spectrum of this religion’s practice on a scale of 10 to 100 with 10 being moderate followers and 100 being osamas, al-zawaharis and abu-hamzas then i would say large percentage muslim population will fall into the range of 60 to 80. Because the fundamental problem is there might be moderate muslims but there is no moderate Islam.

    I hope this message doesnt get sensored.

  93. @GreatGujju
    “we have to wake up to the reality that majority of muslims all over the world are subconscioulsy supporting such views. Few handfull terrorists or people do not represent a religion and majority are peaceful by nature is now a cliche argument. The majority of muslims, though they might not openely be supporting, are skewed towards radical thinking of Islam’s teaching. So if you consider the spectrum of this religion’s practice on a scale of 10 to 100 with 10 being moderate followers and 100 being osamas, al-zawaharis and abu-hamzas then i would say large percentage muslim population will fall into the range of 60 to 80”


  94. @Bengal Voice
    Hindus do face a lot of intimidation in areas of Bengal. To be honest I blame the Communists for this more than anyone as their pussyfooting has emboldened miscreants. Also the Western controlled media (CNN IBN etc.) who turn a blind eye to create a victim-hood complex among Hindus. Let’s not get emotionally manipulated into turning on each other.

    What I find curious is the fox news article you posted, more so the Zionist author of it. As I alluded to in the Iraq thread, this is just another ploy to create a cycle of communal bitterness in India so that the West can deflect jehadi heat on to the Indians. When push comes to shove, like it did during the Mumbai attacks, where are they?

    Mamata Banerjee offering namaz, I believe, is actually insulting to Muslims. When so many of them are impoverished these token gestures are just a way of keeping them in their place. It’s like recent Quran burning episode isn’t it? Some hillbilly redneck makes empty threats which gives Americans a chance to express righteous indignation and conduct Muslim outreach shenanigans. Stage-managed PR at its finest.

  95. @ do you also see your lower intestines from down there.

    The important issue is not what the Western media is doing, BUT what the Indian media is not doing.

    Phyllis Chesler, the author of the editorial on Fox, was a victim of Islam personally.

    She married a Afghan Muslim and went to live with him in Kabul before she was forced to convert to Islam, thrown into a Burkha and kept like a slave for 5 years. Finally Phyllis managed to escape Afghanistan and return back to the US.

    A Hindu activist friend of mine who also lives in Washington DC introduced Tapan Ghosh of Hindu Samhati to Phyllis, while Mr Ghosh was visiting DC. He was eventually interviewd in New York by Fox.

    So Satish…keep staring up your rear end.

  96. @khujur rishi
    Thank you for that well articulated reply that pointed out the inaccuracies and mistakes in my post and made everyone realize that you’re correct.

    She married a Afghan Muslim and went to live with him in Kabul before she was forced to convert to Islam, thrown into a Burkha and kept like a slave for 5 years.

    I guess Phyllis Chesler, with her extensive personal experiences, is our go-to gal for fair and balanced reports on what the evil muslims are up to.

  97. @ Satish

    My friend in DC was actually looking for Satish to bring this news out on NDTV and IBNLIVE, but he could not see your head. It was deep down somewhere he was hesitant to enter.

    So he ended up asking Phyllis to take it to Fox. Atlest you took your head out and noted this occurence.

    Next time my friend will know where to reach you.

  98. My views on this issue are not very well formed so just asking a question. In the interests of maintaining peace wouldn’t impartial obfustication of facts be a good idea? I mean, don’t mention the community no matter whether it is the majority or the minority. I do agree that the selective bias on the media’s part is appalling. Extending this argument to cover KJO vs Salman makes no sense as it is extremely unlikely o provoke the same scale of mass hysteria that religion provokes. And how exactly does your censoring policy work? How was the Gopal Patha comment allowed to get through?

  99. @Dijo

    Journalism is about reporting facts. How does one exactly maintain peace by hiding details of large-scale pogroms? Suppressing the truth only encourages the Jihadis to continue wiping out the Hindus in West Bengal, like they have in East Bengal (a.k.a Bangladesh). Perhaps that is exactly what the “peace-loving” media barons have in mind.

  100. After Gujarat riots, FUREC was formed by 15 spiritual leaders under guidance of APJ Kalam. But some islamic leaders have problem giving respect to other religious occasions. Its “KUFR” according to some. Hope they resolve the problem soon. And the best solution for Deganga type problem is to push them back into Bangladesh. I am sure, if we are vigilant, radicals cant succeed.

  101. unfortunate…really…..this is exactly wat happens wen u dnt vote…nobdy gives a dmn abt ur well being….so called “communities” go out and vote…

  102. Like most commenters here, I didn’t know of this at all. If an MP is leading this kind of violence, it is indeed appalling. Its disturbing that Islamic fundamentalism is hitting so close to Calcutta, that too with tacit approval from Mamata Bannerjee! It only goes on yo prove how screwed Bengal is – from the Left front to Mamata!

    However, so far I have read just Chandan Mitra and a Wikipedia article on this, and information is sketchy at best, so I wanted to ask for some more information:

    1. Some of the commenters mentioned that this was a “genocide”. How many Hindus were murdered exactly? Any Muslims dead?

    2. I also read that this seems to be the beginning of a large scale Muslim insurgency, predicted by Hindu activists on the blog for the last couple of years. So am I correct in assuming that the violence has spread beyond this village and the Central and WB governments are collectively hiding this from us? If so which other areas has been affected so far?

    More information on this issue would be welcome.

  103. Excellent GB, kudos…..

  104. Good article.

    But I think you give too much benefit of doubt to the ‘mainstream media’. The fact is, there is no difference between mainstream and local / party media when it comes to being biased and pushing their own agendas. In fact, the mainstream are more dangerous since they maintain a facade of being neutral (unlike say a Shiv Sena’s Saamna)

    Some very common biases:
    1. They are pro-corporate, and anti-left. This is in no small measure due to their ad revenues coming from corporate ads
    2. In the guise of being secular, they are explicitly anti Hindu and pro minority (especially Muslim). In fact they dont hide their contempt for the people of Gujarat for electing Modi again and again
    3. They champion their own causes, having the illusion of bringing change to society. Read HT’s blowing its own trumpet for a whole month on need for tree pruning in Mumbai, as if that were the most crucial activity for the country’s development today

  105. Rethinking Religion in India – Set of Ideas. Secular/Communal/Pluralism Debate : Its a pot of gold

    Does anyone know what secularism actually means?

    @Siddhartha : I liked your first comment on this post. Aptly written and so true.

  106. oops please disregard the previous post…got posted before i could finish.

    @ Shan
    1. This was not a genocide my any means as an individual event. It was a not even a ‘riot’. It takes both sides involvement to call it a riot.
    This was a one sided attack by well organized Muslims whose goals was to force the Hindus to leave and turn an already favourable demography in N 24 Parganas, further in their favor. This has been happening in many areas for many years, but the scale and magnitude of this one points to the confidence and aggressiveness that Islamists have gained every time they have gone unchallenged; and that is quite often in Bengal.

    2. Many people had predicted the beginning of violent Islamic actions in Bengal soon, that I have been a big proponent of that.

    When that is said, that does not mean, that one fine morning hordes of AK47 wielding Muslims come riding on pickup trucks shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’, if that is what you are alluding to.

    That will happen when the population ratio has already reached a 80-20 ratio or more in favour of Jihadis. That is still many years down the line, if things are allowed to continue this way unchecked. In the case of Bengal that may not even happen because Hindu Bengalis will shit their pants and pack up leave the moment the population ratio crosse the 60% mark in favor of Ms in the urban areas. Maybe this time move over to “communal” Narendra Modi’s Gujarat.

    What essentially is happening, and has will pridectably increase over the years, is that these violent attacks will happen very regularly, and with increasing intensity (you can gauge the intensity of this one, by the fact that both Eastern Frontier Rifles and RAF could not control the attacks after 6 hours of deployment and Army had to be called in). As more and more villages are emptied out, the frequency and multitude of these types of attacks will increase.

    I know you dont believe me, so wait and watch.

    PS: ‘We’ will not sit and watch, though.
    This year, the Jihadis have threatened to attack again, if there was any Durga Puja at Deganga. Hindus will have more Durga Pujas there and in Kartikput that in the pst years. You are invited to join the festivities.

  107. @Shan

    Though I well recognize the sarcasm (and usual disbelief) in your post, for your benefit, I will post the answers to your questions

    8 Hindus were dead, 60 injured, more than 30 ‘missing’, 6 molested / raped, more than 30 shops burnt / looted. Muslims killed – 0, injured – 15

    In adjoining Murshidabad District, these events happen on-and-off, albeit on a small-scale

  108. @Sadaf: If you are looking for evidence on where the Muslim majority worldwide lie on a scale of closeness (10 to 100), feel free to look up some of the Pew research foundation polls where they asked people the validity of using “extremist techniques”. The % polled resemble closer to the 60-80 boundary, as suggested by GreatGujju. Or look up the book “End of Faith” by Sam Harris.

    @ALL: I don’t think there’s any reason to be particularly hysterical about Deganga – its a small, seismic shift in the events of geopolitics, spanning over a millennium. Just like a large Gondwana mass of earth can move over million years from antartica to asia, the spread of a “certain religious community” over the last millennium has happened through small steps … one at a time. In present years, each time such events occur, there’s a mass hysteria on how bad things are … but then, almost instantaneously, we hear “moderate members of that community” come live on TV to declare that their religion is hijacked by the “extremists” or that “terrorists have no religion” and so on. Relieved with the enlightening truth about such events, the rest of the civilization go back to having good Ilish mach, Kochi pathar mangsho and watch Indian idol …. till, of course, the next seismic event. For more details on the grand scheme of things, refer to Huntington’s clash of civilizations. Coming back to Deganga, if Bengalis have not learned anything between 1947 to 2010 (via 1971), I think its best we stop fighting because as “Raj Thakrey” mentions above, WE ARE the next dodos.

    @Rishi: I will write to you, just to find out what are you cooking? But as an enlightened journalist (another Bengali, who else??) pointed out Time for Hindus to leave or perish? by Kanchan Gupta

  109. @ Debadrida
    My response to Shan didnt make it through. Yep look forward to hear from you.

  110. @ Debadrida
    I had sited PEW research data on what Sadaf is talking about before on this forum during a debate with Ravi Ivaturi.

  111. @Debadrita: I would appreciate some links

  112. @Sadaf: Link for what, exactly? Please read the book “End of faith” by Sam Harris, where he gives “links” or citations for his statements. The reason I like the book, even though I don’t necessarily agree with all of its findings, is that it backs its claims with authentic sources.

    As for Pew Research foundation polls, there are many – if you know how to do a “Google search” you can find many links. One example is Islamic Extremism: Common Concern for Muslim and Western Publics but I don’t recall if this is the EXACT LINK that the book cites. You’ll have to read the book yourselves.

  113. One thing which I can’t make out is , whenever Bengalees criticize themselves in blog comments, they make it a point to list down some of our delicacies in “Benglish”, e.g. “Kochi pathar jhol”, “sorshe ilish”, “ilich machh”. WHY?? Are we supposed to be ashamed of the fact that we savor these things?? Do our problems stem from these?? Or is this the most efficient way to do soul-searching??

    Eating burgers & tacos & burritos are the only cool things.. right???

  114. Gujarat, anyone?

  115. @Abhik: There’s absolutely nothing wrong in savoring “sorshe ilish” or “ilish mach”, or for that matter anything that titillates our sense organs, as long as these are not the ONLY things that interest us. Now, please make you own list of top 5 (or 50) things that interests the common bengali – and then see if “Not being a refugee AGAIN” is in that list or not!

    PS – Eating burgers or tacos or burritos are absolutely NOT cool – that is for the “western infidels and kuffars” 😉

  116. I have visited Bengal recently, and happen to visit border areas; I can say for sure in past 40yrs “Shonar Bengal” has gone to the gallows!!

    I despise the sham-hypocrite-upper-caste (including myself), Intellectually Bankrupt self-proclaimed elites—Chatterjees, Banerjees and Mukhrjees et al—, who have taken the local poor Hindu population for granted (more appropriately as Slaves) and given the state in the hands of criminal migrants from across the border.
    Fear not my Bengali brothers if TMC comes to power I would suggest its just the beginning of 2nd phase of jihad in Bengal (after 1st by turkic criminal thug called Khilji)!

  117. @Debadrita

    “PS – Eating burgers or tacos or burritos are absolutely NOT cool – that is for the “western infidels and kuffars””

    With almost every alternate Bengali family having one or more family members in US or other Western countries, if you think such generalizations about Bengali psyche are still valid, then the reasons are best known to you…

  118. Whats wrong with the Islamic conversion by the way? I hate the liberals , but lets not put all the blame on them. People are foolish and cowards not to call a spade a spade and its because of them that the Islamists are taking over everywhere in the world. Their zeal and tenacity are admirable and we should better start adjusting to the new world order. It may not be as bad a world as it looks like, afterall people did live in continents under the Caliphate, right??

  119. My bad! Clearly, wit and sarcasm are not for everyone, especially when such statements ends with a wink 😉 .

  120. @Debadrita Sen…

    In case you missed the point here due to your excessive wit & sarcastic sense of humour, let me clarify that I was arguing against your subtle hint that ilish machh eating Bengalees consider eating Burgers et al is for “western infidels and kuffars”. Such is not the case FYI. Now type as many winks as you like… 🙂

  121. Dib: Whats wrong with the Islamic conversion by the way?

    It comes with murder, rape and pillage, not exactly through peaceful “spiritual” discourse. Feel free to offer up your family and friends to such treatment if you’re in the mood for some “admirable” masochism, but most people in the world believe in pride, dignity and respect for themselves. The question is: what’s wring if _you_ lack them? Nothing, really. It’s a call you make.

    Islamic conversion was resisted in India successfully, physically by people like Shivaji and intellectually by people like Bankim Chandra. You take Ghazni, Ghori and the 9/11 killers as your role models. I take Shivaji and the like. What’s wrong with that?

  122. That being that it strengthens extreme voices from the Hindu right, who accuse Indian mainstream media of having a strong “liberal pro-minority” bias, so ideologically rigid so as to not being averse to obfuscating or relegating to the sidelines news that does not fit into their general narrative.

    And how does the Deganga reporting provide them credence?

    By proving them right in at least one case.

    Yaar, GB, a Google news search for ‘Sarada’ throws up 60 results as compared to 89 for ‘Deganga’. The Sarada incident is older, btw, by more than a month. Although, I have my doubt about using that as a measure, I guess it does present a somewhat tenable analogy. Anyway, this is an oft repeated accusation with little reasoning behind it. For one, I would have liked it if you could have at least tried to present a reason stating why the media would have this bias.

    And although your article only touched upon the media’s “bias”, leaving that aside, one difference between the two—and it’s a major difference, mind you, as you obviously must know—is that in Deganga, the rioters were kept in check by calling in the Army. In most other communal conflagrations, especially outside WB, the decision of calling in the Army is usually taken in a much more, shall we say, relaxed fashion with a number of extraneous considerations factored in.

  123. @Abhik/Debadrita,
    I believe both of you understand the risks associated with Islamic expansionism and the impact it has on Global terrorism. You folks are acting like Rajput Kings under Islamic rule: fighting over trivial points thus shifting focus from real problems. Can I humbly request you to focus your energies on making a difference on the ground? It appears that Rishi offers a good starting point although it is not the persons or organization that matters, it is the work that is important. Any response including flaming is welcome although I may not respond to flaming.

    If that was sarcasm then it probably missed it’s mark. 🙂

    I would be glad if you can show me how upper caste treated local Hindu population like slaves. A desperate attempt to project “dalitism” in Bengal’s recent economic/political debacle would achieve baseless claims such as yours. Who was this Bengali upper caste who took local Hindu population for granted: Jyoti Basu or Biman Bose or Pramod Dasgupta?

    May I humbly point out that we all have learnt from Godhra, from Sarada, from Bareili? Even a liberal like this “demented mind” put up a post that seemed to be communal issue. If any attempt was made next time, there will be bigger waves. What exactly is your point here?

  124. @Sourya,
    A little correction: Godhra, not Gujrat. First one is the cause, second one is the effect. Big difference.

  125. @ Siddhartha:
    Btw, yesterday another incident happened in Gocharan, PS-Joynagar, Dist South 24 parganas. Nothing big.

    @ Shan
    My response to your questions didnt make it through the filters yestertday.
    Will sned it to you through email.

    @ Hades
    Do you see something common in Godhra and Sarada or Barely?

  126. @Siddhartha: Thanks for you suggestions. I did write to Rishi and got a prompt reply. While I still don’t have much hope for the Bengalis, it is certainly worth pondering over his last email to me – it makes me think things in a different light. Lots of things I am simply unaware of 😮

  127. Debadrita,
    You are a Bengali yourself, are you not? Giving up on yourself is not acceptable as it is akin to suicide. I will rather kill someone and choose electronic chair than commit suicide.

  128. @Debadrita

    As Swami Vivekananda succinctly put it – “Hope IS Life”.

    If we lose hope, we lose Bengal. Do you really want that to happen?

    So keep your chin up and slug it out. What have you got to lose, anyway… except Bengal?

    Rishi and I shall look forward to working with you.

  129. Rishi,

    As I said, the media coverage for Sarada and Deganga have been equally sparse—well, not exactly equally because the “outcry” and indignation over the sparse coverage was lesser in the case of Sarada but that’s the way the ball rolls, I guess.

    The response of the adminstration has been different, of course.

  130. @ hades
    You didnt get it.
    All the riots you mentioned, began with a Mulim assasination of one or more Hindus. Oh yes I know in Godhra it was the Hindu karsevaks who decided to light themselves up like a candle.

  131. @ shan
    My response got approve after 2 day. See my comment on September 13, 2010 at 1:58 pm

  132. @Rishi, Animesh:

    Thanks. The Wikipedia article didn’t mention figures so I asked.

    I am hoping that the TMC political leader will be brought to trial for this.

  133. I think the media had handled Bareilly and Miraj-Sangli riots (in Maharashtra) quite similarly.

    And I do believe that the media is motivated (perhaps by money) and biased to be resorting to such tactics. I do not say this out of feeling of insecurity, but in my view that is the only hypothesis that explains these occurrences most succinctly.

  134. There was another “gherao” of Deganga police station yesterday night by Muslims. They have threatened “open jihad” if Durga Puja is allowed this year.

    People living in Barasat area in this forum can help locals by providing active logistic and moral support over the next 2 months.

  135. @ rishi khujur

    done m in … let see wat can be done from my side. I remember almost situation at PALTA 2 yrs back n dat too durin durga puja. That time too, the M’s from TITAGARH went to help their brethren.

  136. Tehelka has an article discussing exactly what you say:

  137. Desolate Deganga’s silent prayer to Durga Devi this year

    Deganga is a non-descript town in the North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal. Until a month back, most people living in towns and cities of Bengal had never heard of this place.
    Today though, while thousands of Hindus in Deganga spend another day in fear, trepidation and uncertainty for their and their children’s future, 20 miles away, oblivious to the tragedy, people in Kolkata will be celebrating Durga Puja with pomp and splendor.
    There was a time when the forefathers of Bengalis who live in Deganga today, could not celebrate Durga Puja. Fifty years back they were hounded out of their lands, their belongings, and often their honor and their lives, because they were Hindus. Their misfortune was that they lived in a place called East Pakistan.
    They escaped to West Bengal with nothing but a hope for a new life and possibly a new future for their children. Two generations later, they face the same fear, the same stench of death and destitution, tragically this time in West Bengal, India. This time it is the Muslims of West Bengal that are doing this to them. For as India thrives as the world’s largest secular democratic state, Deganga and its surrounding areas have slowly and steadily become Muslim majority.
    In Deganga, there is a small locality named Chattal Palli in the west of Deganga police station.This land was once owned by Rani Rasmani, a popular Hindu philanthropist. Most people living here, came from Chittagong are of present day Bangladesh. They have been celebrating Durga Puja for forty years in this locality. A two acre plot of land separates the place from the nearby highway. Few years back, Muslims built a graveyard illegally at the left side of the plot.
    What happened on September 6th, 7th and 8th, 2010 – when about two thousand Muslim hooligans led by a Haji Narul Islam and elected member of Parliament, attacked the Hindus with bombs, pistols, spears, swords and acid bulbs, reminded everyone that lessons need to be learnt when faced with Islamic brutality.
    Every woman attacked, every house and shop looted and every temple destroyed at Deganga and its surrounding areas cries out to the people around the world, this Durga Puja, that we need to learn from our past, or we will be condemned to repeat them.

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