The Blog of Cafe Dissensus Magazine – we DISSENT

Posts from the ‘Secularism’ category

A Thought about MSS Pandian

By Aashique Iqbal
Vulnerability need not be a recipe for weakness, MSSP seemed to suggest, but an opportunity. By not inhabiting the national mainstream, vulnerable groups could question dominant ideas. This meant not only questioning our opponents but more so those who were close to us, even when they were sympathetic.

Should Indian Muslims Engage with Prime Minister Modi?

By Arshi Khan
Muslims need the fulfillment of their constitutional rights for which the Republic of India was created. Muslims cannot accept a State worse than the colonial masters as they were not so cruel, dishonest and violent against their subjects. The citizens are not hosts to welcome a government but to watch it and to criticize it if it goes beyond the statutory rim.

Remembering Weaver-Saint Kabir in Varanasi

By Bhaswati Ghosh
For someone who did not renounce the worldly life in search of enlightenment, but rather remained in the thick of it, working hard for a living, Kabir, through his defiant and colourful satire, remains a torchbearer for mavericks. He is the wise fellow who stands in the marketplace wishing everyone well, without affirming friendship or enmity with anyone.

A Short Film on Communalism and Manto

By Cafe Dissensus
I could see that Shyam was deeply moved. I could well understand what was passing through his mind. When we left, I said to him: ‘I am a Muslim. Don’t you want to kill me?’ ‘Not now,’ he replied gravely, ‘but while I was listening to them and learning of the atrocities committed by the Muslims, I could have killed you.’

Some Observations on Barkha Dutt’s Article

By Mosarrap H. Khan
Dutt’s use of the word ‘compassionate’ is interesting. As Krishnan points out, it’s certainly offensive for Muslims. One doesn’t expect compassion from the man, who many Muslims hold responsible for the carnage in Gujarat. However, what intrigues one about the term, ‘compassionate’, is its underlying suggestions of theocracy.

Firm No to Modi-sarkar

The incumbent JNUSU has called upon the students to join a campaign against BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Varanasi, although it has not specified which candidate would it support. The Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad – student wing of the RSS – brought out a vicious pamphlet attacking the JNUSU’s call for campaign against Modi.

When Religion Encroaches

By Riti Das Dhankar
One of the things that remained unchanged in Jaipur was a small shop in one of the markets. When we speak of the landmarks in a city, we refer to those places which have been there for at least half a century or more. The shop I am referring to is a butchery.

My Encounter with Religion

By Riti Das Dhankar
Since I was a philosophy student, I was forced to read about Buddhism, about Charvak, and about various other theories of human existence. Slowly, I started enjoying them; I particularly enjoyed and loved reading the philosophy of Charvak. He made the age old superstitious practices look ridiculously silly. Without giving offense, his arguments stated meaningful and obvious facts logically.

‘Hindu’ Terrorism?

By Mosarrap H. Khan
Then Mohanji and Indresh, both said: Yeh bahut achcha hain. Zaroori hain. Sangh se nahi jodna. Sangh nahin karenge. [unclear] Hindutva ke liye bhi aisa koi hain. Sangh ka yeh vichar nahi hain. (This is great. It’s very important that it be done. But don’t link it to the Sangh. The Sangh will not do this. [unclear]. Now Hindutva has someone like this on its side. But this is not the ideology of the Sangh.)

From Jogeshwari to Azad Maidan: A detour through Govandi

By Rama Akhtar
I live in a Muslim ghetto in Jogeshwari (East). I am aware that this sounds jarring and may reek of stereotyping right from the first sentence since ‘Muslims’ and ‘ghettoes’ have been co-related more often than not. My house is inside a narrow by-lane seconds from the main road and across this road lies a Hindu ghetto.

Identity: Learning ‘Muslim’

By Anwesha Rana
My family had many Muslim acquaintances and they often came home. When my mother explained that these people were Muslims, I was taken aback. They were also people like us; they spoke like us; they behaved like us; they expressed their affections like us.

‘Are you a Bangladeshi?’

By Mosarrap H. Khan
To my horror, I found that my passport application was withheld because the space for citizenship verification had been left blank in my police verification report. The report neither confirmed nor denied my status as an Indian citizen.