147 thoughts on “Open Thread – Brown Pundits”

  1. Any thoughts on whether the Iranian HG’s were the first population to settle in the Indus Valley?

    I had always assumed AASI were predominate throughout the subcontinent, and then were then subjected to migrations from first the Iranians then Aryans.

    However the Iranian HG admixture is the largest portion of ancestry in most Indus populations, and now that we know they arrived in the region much earlier than expected, I wonder if they were the first inhabitants of the Indus.

    1. Long story short I think “West Eurasia” biogeographically was in NW India. Probably some turnover in pleistocene. Iranian HG groups differentiated after LGM tho

      1. I have a question for Razib. Is the south Asian U2 (U2i as in U2a, U2b and U2c) still considered to have been in south Asia for a long time (like since over 40,000 years ago- a number that I came across in an old paper from the early 2000s) or has the time of arrival been revised since the early 2000s?

        1. the intervals on those coalescence estimates are so high, i don’t even know what to think. 40K is too old for my intuition but who knows?

          1. I was asking this because I have heard some people (a part of the amateur audience like myself) throwing around the possibility of U2i entering south Asia with the Iran HGs. Is this plausible? My current stance is that I am very skeptical of this proposition.

  2. @HMBrough
    How’s your arranged marriage process going?
    Any anecdotes/stories you’re willing to share?

    1. It’s going ok. Talked to quite a few girls, most didn’t work out past the chatting stage (half the time I ghosted them, half the time they ghosted me), but I’m meeting another one soon.

      Definitely there’s a lot of bullsh*t in the process (especially when some girls don’t even want to get married, they are just talking to you because their parents made them. This problem occurs near-exclusively with 2nd-gens.)

      But it’s better than American dating. Nothing could be as bad as American dating.

      1. Thanks for the response!

        What sort of topics start coming up when you talk to them?
        And what, if I may ask, are some incompatibilities you see between yourself and the “dates”?

  3. I hear the phrase “Idea of India” bandied about by a lot of people in the Indian academy, as well as journalists on lots of English medium Indian news channels. No one has defined this for me rigorously, even though I spent the first 19 years of my life there.

    The HNs have at least a clear definition – India is the nation state of the followers of the Hindu religion.
    The “idea of India” people presumably think India is not that – well what is it then?

    1. Hindu Nationalists say this, but then have this weird obsession with trying to both maintain control of non-Hindu areas (Kashmir, Punjab, North-East States), and even annex non-HIndu countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh.

      Pakistan, for all its warts, has no interest in trying to one day invade and annex Gujarat or Rajasthan. Its interests are in the Muslim majority areas contiguous to the country, namely parts of Kashmir.

        1. Yes claimed them in 1948 during the flurry of partition, but not after. Occasionally they’ll print a map with Junagargh as part of Pakistan to troll Indians, but that’s it.

          Contrast to India, where its against the law to depict accurate maps that show Azad Kashmir as part of Pakistan, and where the ruling party in government makes statement about how they will invade Pakistan and annex its territory.

      1. I feel like you’ve misread the HN claim either because you do not think they matter enough to take seriously (big mistake), or you do not want to digest what their rise as a force means (even bigger mistake). Let me spell it out for you:

        1. There is no such thing as Muslim land in the subcontinent. There is only Hindu land that Muslims are currently squatting on.

        2. Therefore, an accommodation with Pakistan makes about as much sense as caring what my appendix thinks after I have had it removed. The long term elimination of Pakistan as any kind of military or economic check on India must be the lode star of Indian policy. The Chinese will not trade Shanghai for Islamabad and thus Sino-Pakistan axis goes only so far.

        1. Right but even you are being vague here. There’s a big difference between, “Pakistan is Hindu land and we will recapture it”, to “Pakistan is an enemy state and it needs to be rendered militarily and economically non-threatening”. Hindu Nationalists seem to go back and forth on this.

          As for not taking them seriously, no, I don’t take them seriously as a threat to Pakistan, because they aren’t. The only threat Hindu Nationalists pose are to other Indians (Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Dalits, seculars, liberals, South-Indians in that general order).

          1. Depends on what you mean by capture. We are long past the days of saturation bombing of cities and massed armor attacks.
            If capture = “definitively subordinate strategic goals” then yes this is the goal of India. A denuclearized Pakistan that is constrained by Indian foreign, defense and energy policy will probably suffice. (Canada). A civilian controlled Pak might even go for this w/o fighting, by many metrics Canada is actually a better place to live than the US.

            Militarily, the only thing that really keeps India from total war with Pak is casualties. Let’s run the numbers though and be data driven:

            Pak has mostly tacticals with low single digit KT yields. Assuming India is able to wipe out half – we are looking at max 10mm casualties on the Indian side. A tragedy but in the scheme of things < 1% of Pop

            India has more effective delivery methods + multi hundred KTs, so the Indian retaliation would inflict ~ 50-100mm on Pakistan which would mostly be the end of Pak as a viable entity. India is set back 20 years but still has nukes so can effect re-building. Public image will likely never recover though, sadly.

            So if HN is ascendant in India to the extent that there are enough Indians willing to die and enough fanaticism in the Indian establishment.. all bets are off. I know Paks grow up reading stories of Hindu military impotence and cowardice in the face of Saif-al-Islam, you should consider how such arrogance has played out in actual military history though.

          2. I don’t think you know how full out nuclear war works.

            Even if Pak never got off a single nuclear warhead (which is silly as probably 80% of them would get through), the damage done from India’s strikes on Pakistan alone would be catastrophic for India.

            Pakistanis would die a quick, painless death. Indians would die a long painful death, from all the poison and debris released into their atmosphere. Mostly in the North, which is a kind of karma as that’s where the great bulk of Hindu Nationalists reside.

            Also, if India ever resorted to just erasing Pakistan off the map, whatever was left of India would itself be erased by China the next day. China would not tolerate the existence of an antagonistic country on its border that would so eagerly opt for nuclear Armageddon.

            You are correct that Pakistanis sometimes consider Hindus to be weak. Hindu Nationalists are breaking this stereotype; Hindus are now considered to be stupid.

          3. I dont think , notwithstanding Pakistan first use of nuclear doctrine, it would ever come to nuclear wars and stuff. Both sides will first use conventional weapons, and by the time the threshold ever reaches for nuclear weapons the war would stop. I have a hunch that even if Pakistan slips in a TNW first to attack some Indian army column, still India would not go nuclear, because the damage subsequently when the war ends would be really to Pakistan than to India .

          4. If Pakistan uses a TNW on its own soil to neutralize invading Indian forces, I agree its unlikely India retaliates with a nuclear strike.

            The BJP government has been making noises about trying to get out of that dilemma, by hinting it would respond with nukes in such a scenario, but nobody believes them.

            What is worrying is that more capable countries than India/Pak (US and Soviets) have very come close to accidentally firing nukes on each other, and were on much better terms than India/Pak.

            The worry isn’t that the BJP has the balls to start a nuclear war intentionally (they don’t), its that their attempts to go as close to Pak’s redline as possible (if not put a toe over it), will result in an eventual misreading of the situation by either them or Pak, and nuclear war will start accidentally.

            This is what I mean by the stupid comment above.

          5. “…will result in an eventual misreading of the situation by either them or Pak”

            LOL. The trick, in matters nuclear, is to make your opponent doubt your sanity. It is amusing to see the Modi government doing this. It levels the field.

          6. I think both sides are mostly sane, the trick is to push the other side to do something crazy by pushing against its red lines. All this nuclear saber rattling is just that, saber rattling. Neither side really has in them to really use nuclear weapons (even TNW) because of the mortal fear of what happens next.

            All previous Indo Pak wars,operations ( apart from few notable exceptions like 71 war and 2008 Mumbai )have been very conventional and conservative in nature, and what really stands out is lack of imagination and purpose in those armed conflicts.

          7. Sigh, internet mujahideen do not have reliable info about nuclear fallout effects generally, brother.

            Nuclear weapons in the 100KT or so range do not disperse their fallout more than 5-10 miles. This is the reason why the Indian nuclear program stopped there in ~ 1998 and did not continue on to megaton weapons (that are largely for show). Wind patterns themselves carry primarily from the Indian side into Pakistan, or go directly up via Karachi to stop at the foothills of the Himalayas.
            You should feel free to think yourself superior to most Hindus (or whatever it is Islamo-chauvinists do to cope nowadays) but the people running the Indian nuclear program aren’t morons.
            You know who else aren’t morons, the RAND corporation, which wargamed a full nuclear exchange between India and Pak. Prize for guessing the results

    2. Their Idea of India is appeasement of minorities and treatment of Hindus as second class citizens.

      1. Yes poor Hindus they have only 1% of the government seats, are lynched for eating beef, are denied access to the reservation system, have had their mosque demolished, face severe housing and job discrimination, and are being threatened with outright expulsion by the ruling party in government.

        Oh wait.

        1. Also Hindus like Kamlesh Tiwari who are murdered by jihadi savages.whose murder was justified by leftists and Islamists.

    3. “I hear the phrase “Idea of India” bandied about by a lot of people ”

      “Idea of India” was coined by a sindhi , whose own people were the first to choose Pakistan in 43 itself

  4. I had some questions about genetics. 1st of all i know little about genetics. So i usually rely more on common sense to understand anthropology.

    What are the percentages of East asian and steppe ancestry in Bangladeshis (and west bengalis)? Do certain percentages decrease and increase as time passes? What is our genetic make up? If possible,give genetic make up of Rohingyas also.

    Are different socio economic classes of Bangladesh genetically different from each other bcz i see higher aboriginal features in poor beggars(but not among rickshaw pullers) which is almost absent among urban middle class?

    What is the ancient iranian farmer ancestry? Is it just hypothetical? If iranian farmers came to South Asia then iranian haplogroups(may be J haplogroup) should have been found here in much higher number than that of the aboriginal Y haplogroup “H”.

    1. I am not even sure if H is aboriginal, since non-south Asian specific subclades been found in prehistoric Levant and Europe (from the farmers). So for all I know, H might as well be a highly successful Iran HG related lineage (kind of like their version of the R1a explosion).

      1. one thing i wonder is if the biogeographic split along eurasia’s southern rim was further east than it is today. basically, i think instead of west asia, south asia, and southeast asia, you might have just had west asia and southeast asia. in terms of human genetics ‘south asia’ might have come about durig the holocene due to admixture & range expansion of the eastern extremity of west asians and western southeast asians.

        it is now totally plausible that west asian types (eastern iranian farmers) occupied northwest south asia (pakistan, perhaps punjab?) as part of their range from after the last glacial maximum 20,000 years ago, and that there was reciprocal gene flow.

        (JR was definitely ahead of the game in his ideas regarding this)

        1. 20,000 years ago? I thought that the mtDNA split (between Iranian Iran-specific mtDNA and Indian Iran-specific mtDNA) put an upper limit of something like 18,700 years from a study back in 2004, though I might have missed some developments on the subject more recently. I associated the date of the split with the end of the Baradostian culture and the subsequent birth of its derivatives. But yeah, ‘south Asia’ being a southern extension of the barrier that separated west Eurasians and east Eurasians during the last ice age is an interesting idea. There is one south Asian human remain from very long ago (over 30,000 years ago) that I am aware of, but the next most recent ones (chronologically speaking) pop up around 10,000 years ago. This is either a very incomplete archaeological record or a hint of very sparse/close to no human occupation.

          1. All good propagandists have excellent command of the literature in their respective fields.

            It allows them to fashion their narrative on solid foundations, with only the slightest of manipulations at key areas, that can change the entire thrust of what’s being argued.

    2. “What are the percentages of East asian and steppe ancestry in Bangladeshis (and west bengalis)?”

      Around 10-15% of East Asian and around 15-18% steppe. The Iran_HG is around 45-50% and AASI 25-30%.

      “If possible,give genetic make up of Rohingyas also.”

      I think Rohingyas are like people from Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar but with some additional east Asian?

      “Are different socio economic classes of Bangladesh genetically different from each other bcz i see higher aboriginal features in poor beggars(but not among rickshaw pullers) which is almost absent among urban middle class?”

      The BEB Bangladeshi samples look homogenous, alongside the few expatriates samples I’ve seen so far. Razib’s genotype project have some of those expats scores. I don’t know what those aboriginal featured folks would score; perhaps they are like those few outliers Razib found in the BEB samples? I don’t think all beggars in Bangladesh have aboriginal feature, I’ve seen some beggers that looked like regular Bengalis. In rural Bangladesh, some people with poor background have aboriginal features(Perhaps they are Lower caste Hindus or Muslims that converted from Lower Castes?). The people belonging to middles class of rural Bangladesh look the same as Urban middle-class, all middle and upper-class urban Bengalis have root in rural Bangladesh anyway. And you are right, The Rikshaw pullers look like regular Bengalis, they usually do have sharp feature, narrow nose etc. so I guess they are just economically disadvantaged Bengalis.

      “What is the ancient iranian farmer ancestry? Is it just hypothetical? If iranian farmers came to South Asia then iranian haplogroups(may be J haplogroup) should have been found here in much higher number than that of the aboriginal Y haplogroup “H”.”

      I agree with DaThang, Y haplogroup H is not aboriginal; The Iran_HG folks probably were H, y haplo J is from Neolithic Iran I think. Bangladeshis do score lots of Iran_HG, so they do have lots of y haplo H(35%), Y haplo J(12%) is also significant in Bangladesh. Bangladeshis do have 25% Indo Aryan R1a and 10% East Asian O. The AASI related Y haplogroups probably were C and D, which are rarely found now in the subcontinent.

      1. 1) i would move the aasi up and steppe down, but about right

        2) bengalis who are not brahmin seem to look like bihari peasants with variable east asian

        3) the main diff btwn west bengal and east bengal is east asian admixture. it’s probably just a function of geography

        4) which explains rohingya; just more east asian. the most east asian bengali i’ve seen (25-30%) was from chittagong

        5) let’s not confliate aasi with aborignal. at this point we now think it is highly possible that ‘iran HG’ were within geopolitical south asia for the latter portion of the pleistocene

        1. “the most east asian bengali i’ve seen (25-30%) was from chittagong”

          I’m pretty sure some Chittagongian Bengalis did marry Marma or Chakmas in the recent past due to their proximity with the Chittagong hill tracts, so some Chittagongians have such high east Asian as the regular Chittagongians don’t score that high. The same might happen in other parts where Bengalis are living next to Garos or Khasis in the northern portion of Greater Mymensingh and Sylhet. Or with Santhals in some areas of North Bengal, which might result in some extra AASI and Southeast Asian.

      2. the outliers in the BEB are 0% east asian and look more AASI shifted than the other bengalis. i don’t know if they are some endogamous community (they were collected at the same time in dhaka) which migrated recently?

      3. @Son Goku:
        Iran HG and AASI should be flipped. Even Balochis barely reach 50% Iran HG (when you include Barcin and PPNC inputs) and they are by far the most Iran HG-like population alive. I’d say something like 40% AASI and 30% Iran HG makes sense for Bengalis considering how far east they live.
        “sample”: “Bengali_Bangladesh:Average”,
        “fit”: 2.1802,
        “CustomGroup_Simulated_AASI”: 47.5,
        “IRN_HotuIIIb_Meso”: 23.33,
        “RUS_Sintashta_MLBA”: 19.17,
        “Burmese”: 10

        “sample”: “Brahmin_West_Bengal:Average”,
        “fit”: 1.7595,
        “CustomGroup_Simulated_AASI”: 40,
        “IRN_HotuIIIb_Meso”: 30,
        “RUS_Sintashta_MLBA”: 27.5,
        “Burmese”: 2.5

        I have noticed that using ‘basic’ components like this increases steppe ancestry (like doing the same for Rors gives them something like 45% Sintashta even though they are 35% or 37% Sintashta on average). So you could probably use the full software with multiple (4+) inputs to make better fits. Here is the website, feel free to use better inputs.

  5. anyone know accuracy of
    MorleyDNA.com Y-SNP Terminal Subclade Predictor
    That’s how I got my Y DNA H haplogroup. I got my maternal prediction from wegene.

    Wegene also says I am

    94.59%South Asian

    I have no idea why they do such weird distinctions

    1. The warlock wrote:
      “Wegene also says I am

      94.59%South Asian

      That adds up to a 189.49‬%

      1. I am a barbarian Mlecchla in more ways than one bruda

        Jai Shree Ameen. May the Skyfather smile upon you

          1. tbh mleccha love making is probably more adventurous. Arya can be for the streets, so i can keep to my vania rep and continue to scam those brahmins and kshitriyas

            my mleccha great grand daddy banged a freaky arya. das how I gots the OG combo. all the mongrels are R1a and M. Sad (trump voice)!

          2. Tbh, both of your paternal and maternal lineages might as well be Iran HG related based on what we know as of now. K is a U8 subclade and the pre-K U8 might have been completely left to the western side whenever the common ancestors of Levant Aurignacian and eastern Aurignacian/Baradostian split while the Baradostians moved away U8b’c with them. I also suspect that both G and H originated from some Baradostian specific subclades of GHIJK. But all of this is pure conjecture as of now (the part regarding G and H at least).

        1. Neanderthals were probably as cultured as Homo Sapiens Sapiens of the time, but they wouldn’t have been as linguistically skilled, though perhaps more spatially skilled than their Sapiens counterparts.

  6. I was asking this because I have heard some people (a part of the amateur audience like myself) throwing around the possibility of U2i entering south Asia with the Iran HGs. Is this plausible? My current stance is that I am very skeptical of this proposition.

    i think it might be related to iran HG

    1. @Razib:
      Just as an extension to this- the person in question posited that it might have something to do with ANE in Iran HGs (I think he was trying to join up the origins of all existing U2s to northern Eurasia).

  7. @DaThang

    But that’s no fun. Better to think of it as an oppressed and demonized dark granddaddy with uber swagger, who was irresistible to a woman of the invading oxymoronic arya noble savages. A taboo relationship blossomed, yet only so in a historical sense. In our current era, it could portrayed as a heated tryst of fate. But it is tough to defend the other way around, say R1a Y and M mitochondrial. It’s like being proud of the white ancestry of a White Southern slave master and one of his black slaves. At best, it could probably be pictured as an economic choice in favor of men on top of the dominance hierarchy. At worse it can be seen as systemic rape used to supplant the locals. Granted, it is most definitely more of the former, insofar as invasions only last so long but coercion based on perpetuated and ingrained power dynamics can last for what can feel like forever.

    @H.M Borough

    Bro. Use apps that are more LTR friendly like Dil Mil, Hinge, Bumble, or Okcupid. You will seem like a breath of fresh air on there to desi girls who are just used to guys like me who would feign relationship interest for a date or two to try to get it in. Tinder is bad of course but a gold mine if you want to fulfill your urges of the flesh, until this arranged thing works out.

    1. @thewarlocke
      Instead of a mixed ancestry, why not be happy of being potentially descended from a civilizing force (IVC) on both sides? You could larp as a pioneer in that sense (or alternatively someone from the lawful faction).

      1. I prefer a “started from bottom, now we here” vibe

        But good point. In the end, truly resting on the laurels of your ancestors or overly focusing on their demerits is useless at best and pathetic at worst. One should strive to make their life have sufficient significance as a stand alone entity. But it’s good fun to joke about this stuff, especially since so many initially take it seriously, really unsurprising actually, insofar as many who do it on the internet are not really joking

        1. The privilege of being able to make fun & chose either side with no consequences is quite fun indeed, you make your Arya Daddy proud.

          1. My daddy is non-arya, per Y DNA. Nonetheless, I hope to make him proud. And yeah I don’t think it is a coincidence that a lot of ideology over race leaders came out of Gujarat from Gandhi and Jinnah to Sardar Patel and Modi. All of these guys want to push an ideological agenda above a tribal racial one. It can be argued that their ideology is tribal of course. But I always saw Gujarat as a transition zone. I see Maharashtra the same way. It’s a place where most people have a foot in the arya and the other foot in non arya. Then there is a desire to reconcile the two sides. The end result is using broad ideology to bring together the identities via directly uniting their “purer” manifestations, aka more divergent racial groups.

            This is all conjecture of course, random musings actually. But I think there is a modicum of truth. I am biased because I have weaved in and out of “N Indian Indian American” and “S Indian Indian American” groups seamlessly. Often, they cannot say my identity for sure. At first they are cautious, but eventually they don’t mind risking shit talking the other group or it comes out nonetheless for whatever other reason. This “privilege” I get because of my pan indic phenotype has let me navigate social circles that I don’t think I otherwise could have with a more concentrated arya or non arya appearance.

  8. I meant to say Arya mother {got mixed up during scrolling} but none the less you are privileged to keep joking about Caste issue which is forced politically upon Indians & forces them to engage with state only on caste basis.

    It shows your privileged arya Character otherwise you would have been more considerate & humane like all oppressed people and your non-arya father but i guess Arya mother genes prevailed.

    1. First of all, those are just sex chromosomes. If anything, my Dad looks more “arya” by a decent margin. People mistake him for Pakistani and my mother for S Indian. That’s actually part of the reason this whole haplogroup thing is comical for me. My mother was frequently shamed for her dark skin by my Dad’s sisters and her mother in law. She was shamed by her whole family growing up and uses the term “black sheep” literally. Interestingly, this all about skin color because features wise she looks Gujarati as heck and is maybe as dark as say Reddy caste people in AP, not even like, let’s say, scheduled castes Tamils. Regardless, I don’t think I inhered anything about my attitude towards this. It’s all environmental.

      I am far away from that oppression. People in America don’t care that much. So yes, I may offend sensitivities by joking about it because some people actually face it. I acknowledge that. But I also want to point out that my clearly sardonic tone indicates how stupid I think the whole thing is and how I am on the side of those oppressed by the system, who also thing it is incredibly silly and wrong.

    1. Do you still support Modi?

      I don’t think he’s competent, and that matters regardless of what your ‘idea of India’ is.

      1. Well looking at the current political options, i think he is the best bet.

        On economics you really have a choice b/w the least Left (BJP) and the most Left (pretty much everyone else) party. In the current economy anyone who doesn’t roll back whatever few reforms we had post 92 will have my vote.

      2. I think Modi does not listen to professional advice on economics or international trade . He is too swayed by Indian capitalists who have financed him so far.
        He did a good job of eviscerating Article 370 and took a welcome initiative . OTOH , I am not sure whether his advisers have thought of the consequences , think 2 or 3 steps ahead and have the necessary institutional ruthlessness to turn things in their favour.

        By temperament , he is cautious player

        1. I think its not a question of advisers. In a status quo-ist country like India, there are only few limited things you can do wrt economy and security.

          Any party which would have abrogated 370 would have taken almost the same measures(and would have faced the same limitations) which the BJP has done. Its just that it would not have made a good masala Us vs Them story, which one can now make with the BJP ( Nazi vs Freedom fighters, Hindutva vs Kashmiri muslims, Indian vs terrorists etc)

          1. status quo-ist country like India ?? there is nothing inherently status quoist about India. PvNarasimha Rao was in a far weaker position with a minority gov, he was able to usher in big changes.

            I don’t know who is making up the story of Hindutva vs Kashmiri muslims apart from Pakistani gov. Whoever does it have got the wrong end of the stick.

          2. “I don’t know who is making up the story of Hindutva vs Kashmiri muslims apart from Pakistani gov”

            Its amusing that no matter how universal the outcry is to Indian policies globally, Hindus can still find a way to compartmentalize it as, “Pakistani gov”.

            This isn’t surprising in a country where government officials can blame their horrific pollution on a Pakistani plot to poison India (as one BJP official did).

    1. a white female man is angry
      yeah it’s tough. he still might get more matches than a lot of browns. I know enough with essentially none lol

      btw, these apps have internal algorithms. all profiles don’t get equal opportunity to be viewed by others. The more likes you get, the more your profile is shown. The fewer, the less it is shown.

      Enough of my friends are like this:

      So that desi guy holding out for those oh so few conventionally attractive white american blonde girls he so desperately desires is screwed using a primarily dating app strategy for getting dates. Little does he know, people are a lot less biased in person. Literally just talking to people in real life and asking them out is a lot more fruitful for him.

      1. screwed using a primarily dating app strategy for getting dates. Little does he know, people are a lot less biased in person.

        never did online dating. but yes, this is my experience.

      2. I’ve literally never met a Desi guy like that IRL. And I’ve met thousands.

        Seems to be an online caricature.

        1. You need to meet more. There are a ton I know that are epic fails on online dating platforms, besides a couple matches here and there from brown girls.

          Of course there are the players too that absolutely clean up. And no, not all look Steppe lol. For whatever reason, brown men of all types, from my experience, fail equally. The ones that do well all tend to be tall, muscular, and have good jobs. And this success stuff isn’t a binary. There is a distribution for all major racial groups. S Asian just do the worst on average. Look up okcupid’s survey. S Asian men were ranked last in desirability by women, when it came to response rate. This isn’t some phenomena I conjured up in the seemingly vacuum like thing I call a brain.

          And everyone knows that brown men lust after blonde women. Go to New Delhi. Everyone wants to take pictures with blonde female tourists more than any other type of tourist. This caricature has basis in reality.

          1. fail equally. The ones that do well all tend to be tall, muscular, and have good jobs.

            very very dark, specially if they are skinny and tall get plenty (the ones I knew). Being able to talk also helps.

            I was short (5’4”) and big belly and over 45 when went online. My SO used to say I looked like a sleazy Puerto Rican. I cant complain, it was decent. Even going to a bar on and off there would be interest.

            I think as one gets older, the advantages to males increase. Decent teeth seem to help.

  9. In light of all the discussions of who our real “ancestors” are


    Indian Govt revokes Atish Taseer’s Overseas Citizen of India card (watered down version of Green card for overseas Indian) over the fact that his father was Pakistani.

    For the uninitiated, Atish Taseer is a US based writer who profiled Modi for the Time magazine negatively (perhaps the real reason of this revocation) . Curiously his mother has been for long a Modi supporter.

    1. I don’t know all the rights and wrongs of what he is alleged to have done. But OCI does not give you right to political activity. OCI gives you all other cultural and economic rights. So if someone well-known is going to take extreme negative positions on Indian policies or Indian society , then the GoI has every right to cancel it without qualms.

    2. GOI knew about the Time article for half a year, Modi even commented publicly on it.

      The only thing that’s new is Taseer making “gaumutra” jokes and getting into Twitter food fights. And apparently he also used another ethnic slur to refer to Hindus?

  10. I actually didn;t knew that you cannot hold the OCI card if you have parents/grandparents from Pakistan/Bangladesh. Why the same principle is not used then for regular Indian citizenship?

    Also i am not sure it has to do with all this jokes/slurs or political activity. Not everything is directed from the top. Indian bureaucracy is famous for trying to curry favor with their political bosses. Perhaps his OCI was up for renewal or something , some bureaucrat somewhere found a technicality, and thought cancelling his OCI is a very good idea.

    1. Taseer’s Pakistani father was not much more than a sperm donor, so it’s grossly unfair to deny Taseer an OCI after having once decided to give it to him.

      His story is quite similar to Obama’s: single mom raising child born out of wedlock, daddy decamping to his home country where he’s a big man with political connections, son grows up and tries to go discover daddy in his homeland, writing a book about it in the process.

      Of course, we also know how this saga enabled the current POTUS to gain his foothold into politics. 🙂

      1. “so it’s grossly unfair to deny Taseer an OCI after having once decided to give it to him.”

        I was actually angling for something else, why aren’t we making the rules which we have for OCI , the rules for Indian citizenship? I mean,
        what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

  11. Taseer got a notification from the Ministry asking him to justify not having disclosed his having a Pakistani father back in September. My understanding is that his gaumutra “jokes” (insults?) as well as his exhortation to Indian Muslims to “organize” (which rubbed some people here the wrong way) happened within the last month.

    Is this inaccurate?

    If not, I’d say his OCI revocation was an act of vindictiveness in response to his Time Magazine article, 100%. If you recall the discourse right after that article was published, every Modi supporter and his uncle called Taseer a Pakistani.

    The delay between the article (May) and the “show cause” notice (September) was, I’m guessing, for plausible deniability of the OCI revocation being driven by revenge. And it was not some bureaucrat trying to curry favor with the government; it has Shah’s and Modi’s paws all over it.

  12. https://theprint.in/opinion/aatish-taseers-father-salman-taseer-was-a-proud-pakistani-and-defender-of-2-nation-theory/317598/

    Aatish Taseer’s father Salman Taseer was a proud Pakistani and defender of 2-nation theory

    “he asked me what would be the problem if a plebiscite was held and Kashmiris opted for Pakistan. I said, it would be a mortal blow to the secular nationalism we are building as, thereon, all other Muslims will be seen as suspect, and may even be victimised.

    His jaw tightened, he made a mock gesture to roll up his sleeve, and said, if you victimise your Muslims, you think the 14 crore Muslims of Pakistan will sit like cowards and do nothing?” (His exact expression: “Hum 14 crore Pakistani Mussalman bhi chudiya pehen ke nahin baithe rahenge.”) Now how would you describe Salman? In my book, a liberal Pakistani nationalist, a proud Muslim, and of course so bluntly Punjabi.”

    1. A somewhat tangential question, but is Aatish Taseer gay?

      His wikipedia page says that he is married to someone called “Ryan”.

      1. Scorpio – Ryan is anglicised version of old Irish name Riain or (O’Riain) meaning ‘descendant of Rian’. The meaning of the name Rian was supposed to be or water or ocean or king but all these options are rejected by scholars although it is popular to be called – king.

        However, Simon Pelloutier in his “Historie des Celts, Quillau, Paris, 1771” says that Celts were giving the name Carl to their heroes. It means that they were giving this name to their best men. But, this name is not Carl than Cral (pronouncing – kral). Kral (or kralj) is a Serbian name for – king.

    2. Why is ‘defender of two nation theory’ relevant? The party who has ruled India for the last decade is also a defender of the two nation theory.

    1. A true secular state would have ordered the mosque to be rebuilt. If demolishing it was illegal as the court admitted, then the criminals should not benefit from their crime by getting to build their temple on the site of the mosque. Religious beliefs about Lord Ram should have no legal relevance in a secular state. In a Hindu Rashtra perhaps, but not in a secular setup.

      1. 1. for most hindus the very act of building a mosque on the site of a temple is abhorring and is considered the first sin.
        2. it is becoming very difficult for common muslims to sustain such acts.
        3. at some point it should be accepted that building mosques/ churches on preexisting religious sites will be seen as aggression.
        4. the old nehuruvian consensuses has broken down in today’s india.
        5. capture of humanities faculties in the universities by the left and lack of bright students in these departments have made them redundant today.

        1. Babri Masjid existed when India became an independent country in 1947. There was no excuse for it to be torn down by a mob on December 6, 1992. Religious beliefs are not a justification for destroying a minority place of worship. The Supreme Court admitted that the destruction of the mosque was illegal. Yet the land has been given to Hindus to build a temple. If you cannot see how this incentivizes the destruction of other mosques, then it is because of your majoritarian bias. This is a travesty of justice and is the end of India as a secular state.

      2. Kabir, in a land where Muslims demand and receive their own “personal law,” you cannot credibly claim that religion has no place in the legal or public sphere.

        Can’t change the rules of the game now.

  13. Any good source that explains the Ayodhya verdict without legalese?

    AFAIK this judgement is just for the property dispute and the 1992 demolition is held as illegal. So we can expect separate trials for it?

  14. Taseer is BJP’s worst nightmare

    Leftist gay bastard born of a tryst between a Pak Islamist and an upper caste hindu woman who now tries to use liberal rhetoric to malign their political agenda

    1. Calling Salmaan Taseer an “Islamist” is completely unfair. He was a member of Pakistan People’s Party, one of the most liberal parties in Pakistan. He was assassinated by an actual Islamist for defending a minority and criticizing the Blasphemy Law. If that is an “Islamist”, then your definition of Islamist is basically any citizen of Pakistan. It’s like assuming that all Indian citizens are Hindutvadis, which is obviously not true.

      Also for the record, Tavleen Singh is a Sikh–not a Hindu. She also happens to be a huge BJP supporter. Not that that
      helped Aatish.

      His sexuality is neither here nor there and reveals more about the person bringing it up than it does about him.

      If Aatish was not eligible for the OCI card based on his father’s nationality than it shouldn’t have been given to him in the first place. But taking it away now is really more about the article he wrote about Modi than anything else, no matter what justification the Home Ministry gives.

      Also for the record, I don’t approve of everything Aatish does. The comments about cow urine were in poor taste.

  15. Aatish Taseer is cosmopolitan to a level that Modi or Shah, (or myself for that matter), can never be. Some googling reveals that he has an indian mother, pakistani father, british grandmother (salman taseer’s mother), an ex-girl friend from british royalty, and now – an american husband.

    He holds a british passport, an american green card, and as is well know, an indian OCI card that has now been revoked. He lives in NYC in some million dollar apartment, and splits his time between NYC and New Delhi. His childhood was spent in poshest of new delhi neighborhoods where they rubbed shoulders with the power elite of India, and studied in prestigious boarding schools.

    Sometimes one does feel a bit of jealously over such a charmed life (except may be the american *husband* part 😉 )

    But may be I am being crass (I am provincial small town internet hindu after all). He does come across as a sensitive guy, and he has chosen writing as his profession which tells me that he has some substance and depth of character behind the cosmopolitan exterior.

    In short- revocation of his OCI status is a loss for India. India needs some variety, and people like Taseer can bring that to the table.

    1. Yeah, i feel these revocation was uncalled for. If you read his writings he has been far more sympathetic to Hindu right than people who still hold an OCI card (like that gentleman who won a Nobel recently)


      This is very silly of chowkidars most of whom will actually enjoy @AatishTaseer’s ‘The Twice-Born’, particularly the part where he suggests even the poor may have started searching for their Hindu identity.

    2. Modi seems to have taken Aatish Taseer’s criticism of him personally. I am saddened by this petty and despotic way he has used state power against him. In all probability, this will not do much harm to Taseer but only serve to increase his attacks and amplify his voice as that of the ‘resistance’.

      Both Tavleen Singh and her son were pretty enthusiastic about Modi in 2014. I remember a series of flattering articles that Taseer wrote on Modi around 2014 in the Open Magazine. It seems mother and daughter both got to know Modi personally during that period.
      However the relationship seems to have soured later during Modi’s first term and Taseer started his trenchant criticisms of Modi.

      Tavleen Singh and Taseer also have written intellectually honest stuff about Hindutva in their books and articles and not mindlessly repeated leftist/Islamist propaganda. Its a loss for India in not only losing Taseer but also discouraging other people like him.

    3. Modi is self made

      Most of Taseer’s shiz you mentioned is because of his MASSIVELY privileged upbringing. I envy those whose achievements are largely from NOT resting directly on the laurels of their ancestors.

      And pussy is pussy. Plenty of girls just as conventionally attractive if not more so than the Princess he boned. Big deal lol

      1. A massively privileged upbringing that involved not knowing his father and then having him be assassinated.

        Aatish has never been complicit in a pogrom. Modi has been. Great choice of heroes.

        And your last sentence is just so misogynistic it says a lot about your mentality. As does references to Aatish’s sexuality.

        1. lol I am messing around. And Modi is not my hero but neither is Taseer. But I do recognize Modo has achieved more, given from where he started. Taseer didn’t know his father, sure okay. But his life was still better than even 90%+ even first world people.

          I wanted to rustle jimmies and I successfully did

        2. I was messing around. Jimmies rustled = success

          Neither modi nor Taseer are anything close to heroes for me. But Modi has achieved much more, especially from the context of where they both started

          Also, don’t strawman. I said because he is gay he is the BJP’s worst nightmare. I also was critiquing Scorpion’s praise of him sleeping with a Princess, merely pointing out that it isn’t a big deal. But great virtue signaling attempt as trying to paint me as a homophobe misogynist.

          1. If you use a disgusting misogynistic phrase, expect to be called out on your misogyny. Even as a joke, it was in poor taste.

    4. Relax. The only people upset about the Aatish Taseer thing are the people who would have hated India anyways. If they didn’t rant about this, they would have ranted about cow lynchings or 370 or CAB. Their rants are here to stay, folks. Don’t expect to win the ranters over.

      What we can do is hit back, and we have tools to do so. Taseer can produce the bilge he does from his plum post at TIME, but there’s no reason India needs to tolerate his enormities on its own turf.

      1. Wow, so you admit that the revocation of Aatish’s OCI card is because of his criticism of Modi ( “bilge” as you call it) rather than the fact that he supposedly shouldn’t have been given the card in the first place. Breaking the rules was fine when he supported the regime, but the minute he is critical of them he must be punished. Do you even realize how vindictive that is?

        1. My personal view is that he should never have gotten the OCI card, or have been allowed into India. But revoking it now is a salutary decision, and kills two birds with one stone: fixing an old mistake, and signaling the government’s position in and awareness of the ongoing rhetorical war for India.

          1. or have been allowed into India

            He “was allowed” into India as a 2-year old accompanying his single Indian citizen mother. What should the immigration authorities have done with him, you ass? Put the baby in a camp?

      2. HMB:

        The only people upset about the Aatish Taseer thing are the people who would have hated India anyways.

        I’m not sure how old you were at the time of the Iraq War (2003) hysteria, but the things you say remind me of what the bulk of Americans seemed to be parroting at the time. Anyone who tried challenging the Bush Administration’s claims about Saddam and WMD (which would eventually be proven to be bogus) were painted as traitors, asked if they “hated the troops”, “hated America”, etc.

        At least those people were talking about the country they resided in. You seem to feel free to pass such comments living halfway around the world.

        1. Your analogy doesn’t make any sense. I’m not making any factual claims about India. I’m saying that in 2019, there are people (mostly Western, mostly Leftist) who will stop at nothing to paint India in a bad light. That’s not controversial.

          The question is what we do about it. Modi and Shah clearly have one view, and it seems alright to me. If you have a superior strategy, do share it.

          1. (First, I apologize for the epithet in my other comment. I got upset, but it was rude and uncalled for.)

            there are people (mostly Western, mostly Leftist) who will stop at nothing to paint India in a bad light

            Since I can’t resist drawing historical analogies, I’ll present one from apartheid South Africa. When the liberal minister Helen Suzman was accused by a another minster of asking questions in Parliament that embarrassed South Africa, she replied “It is not my questions that embarrass South Africa; it is your answers.”

            It may often be the case that Western media paints India in a bad light and is uncharitable to us, but whether such “paintings” are smears or accurate representations of reality vary case to case. So why don’t we treat them as such instead of jumping to defend every action of the present government, however abominable? There are valid grounds, moral and constitutional, on which to criticize (even condemn) demonetization, the government’s non-response to intimidation/lynchings, the overblown and overheated rhetoric, suppression of free speech and any criticism of the government, Kashmir lockdown, NRC, and the proposed CAB. One would not be a paranoid conspiracy theorist to even spot a pattern here.

            On the other hand, when the government does positive things like Swacch Bharat, efficient and effective delivery of welfare services (for which I can praise the government even as I wish it would focus more on freeing up the market than distributing government largesse), banning regressive laws like Triple Talaq, by all means offer praise.

  16. “Calling Salmaan Taseer an “Islamist” is completely unfair. He was a member of Pakistan People’s Party, one of the most liberal parties in Pakistan.”

    You miss a subtler point. Some of these secular, cultural muslims like Salman Taseer are the most trenchant enemies of India and Hindus (think Musharraf).

    Multiple people, including Aatish, have noted that ST’s hostility to India and Hindus was complete and absolute.

    1. Hostility to India has nothing to do with being an “Islamist”. Plenty of Pakistani nationalists distrust India.

      Islamists want the implementation of Shariah law. This is not anything that anyone in the Pakistan People’s Party has ever wanted, certainly not Salmaan Taseer.

      If he was able to fall in love with an Indian and a non-Muslim woman, his “hostility” was certainly not “absolute”.

      “Islamist” should only be used to refer to those who meet strict criteria. Not every Pakistani is an Islamist.

      1. “Islamists want the implementation of Shariah law. This is not anything that anyone in the Pakistan People’s Party has ever wanted, certainly not Salmaan Taseer.”

        This is semantic nit-picking. I know the definition of Islamist, so yes, it is a wrong word to describe ST. But that doesn’t change the substance of my argument. ST held all the prejudices and negative stereotypes about Hindus that can possibly be held.

        Also, his so called love affair with a Hindu/Sikh woman lasted barely a week. It was as superficial as a one-night stand. One can’t help feel the element of exploitation in this affair. He didn’t keep in touch with his out-of-wedlock son, and actively rebuffed his son’s attempts to reach out to him.

        “He wrote to his father as a seven-year-old, but did not get a response; later, he called him from his boarding school, only to be rebuffed.”

        Personally, I don’t find such a person (ST) likable. Not so much of a matter of begetting out-of-wedlock child, but the act of abandoning one’s child. Just not done.

        1. Salmaan Taseer was assassinated by an islamist. He was killed for defending the rights of a Pakistani christian woman. This is why it is not only wrong but incredibly offensive to label him an Islamist.

          1. Bhutto was hanged by Zia. Bhutto was an enthusiastic promoter of anti-Ahmadi discrimination.

            Moral of the story: Being killed by an Islamist does not absolve anyone of their own bigotry. Islamism is a vast ocean and there are degrees of Islamist bigotry.

            Salman Taseer may not have been a political Islamist but his life is testimony to Muslim privilege and bigotry. His attitude towards accepting his dalliance with Tavleen Singh and subsequent behaviour towards the offspring resulting from it makes him more despicable than an out and out Islamist nutjob.

          2. Taseer was killed because he defended a minority. That is the polar opposite of Islamist.

            He was a Pakistani nationalist however.

            His personal life was his business and has no bearing on his politics. Not that anyone is defending his conduct towards his son.

  17. Salman Taseer is not an Islamist by Pakistan standards, just like PPP is considered “liberal” in Pakistan.And Jinnah a secular person (by Pakistani standard) and Savarkar a communal person (by Indian standards)

    Countries change. Nomenclature change.

    1. An Islamist is someone who wants Sharia law. The PPP and its members believe in democracy and the Pakistani constitution. You can have your opinion about the Pakistani constitution (no one would argue that it is fair to minorities) but it is certainly not based on Sharia.

      Savarkar believed in a Hindu Rashtra. There is no doubting that that is a communalist idea. It is not “Indian standards” or “Pakistani standards” but the proper definitions of words.

      1. Being a democrat and believing in the Pakistani constitution – which confers privilege on Sunni Islam – are contradictory.

        1. A democrat is someone who believes that the choice of government should be decided by free elections and doesn’t support unelected goverments (e.g. military rule). The fact that the Pakistani constitution privileges followers of the state religion doesn’t mean that PPP and PML-N are not democratic parties.

          If one cannot be a democrat and support the Pakistani constitution then one can’t be a democrat and support a Hindu Rashtra either. Yet BJP came to power through elections.

          1. LOL. This is exactly the difference between what these terms mean in Pakistan and India. “Democrats” and “Liberals” in Pakistan are closer in their attitudes to the “Bigots” and “Right wing” in India than those designated by the same adjectives.

          2. You miss the point. Democrats are those who believe in free elections and one man one vote. The rest of their political ideology has no relevance to whether they qualify as democrats.
            If you hate the Pakistani constitution so much you should be equally against the majoritarian notion of Hindu Rashtra.

          3. Don’t look now but you just put the Pakistani constitution and (Right wing) Hindu majoritarianism on an equal footing.

            And yes, I do hate Hindu majoritarianism.

          4. Arjun claimed that one cannot be a democrat and support Pakistan’s constitution since it privileges the state religion. I pointed out that democracy as such has nothing to do with the content of one’s political ideology and that BJP also believes in elections and representative government.

            Pakistan never claimed to be a secular state. It was always a Muslim homeland. India, on the other hand, did aspire to be a state of all its citizens. BJP seems to be bent upon turning the country into the Hindu equivalent of Pakistan.

  18. “Savarkar believed in a Hindu Rashtra. There is no doubting that that is a communalist idea.”

    Jinnah believed and (much more importantly) GOT a Muslim Rasthra. Was he a communalist?

    1. The demand for Pakistan was certainly a communal one, as would be any demand for separation based on religion. However, Quaid-e Azam was fighting for the rights of a beleagured minority not for a majoritarian state. He was also not influenced by the ideas of European fascism as was Savarkar.

  19. “The Supreme Court admitted that the destruction of the mosque was illegal. Yet the land has been given to Hindus to build a temple. If you cannot see how this incentivizes the destruction of other mosques, then it is because of your majoritarian bias. This is a travesty of justice and is the end of India as a secular state.”

    Kabir, imagine an alternate universe where supreme court allocates the land to muslims, and orders the mosque to be rebuilt in exactly the same shape and size at exactly the same spot. Also, the government dutifully complies with the order, and then, as is painfully obvious, deploys large security forces to protect this reconstructed mosque for *all times to come*. The government also deals with the hindu-muslim riots and general chaos and lawlessness that would obviously follow in the event of such an outcome.

    Now come to think of it, what exactly will the value addition of such an alternate universe over our universe? Only thing you can think of is that the secular ideals of the indian constitution would be met. How much is that value worth? In the past, the profession of secular ideals by indian national congress could not even prevent the partition of the country. from the hindu nationalists’ perspective, what does this ideal of secularism give them anyway?

    that is why i think muslims really shot themselves in the foot with their intransigence. had they given up the land of babri mosque *before* its demolition, the goodwill they would have earned would have gone a long way towards their integration in the indian society, and towards their overall safety and well being.

    1. Well, the Yadavs took a hardline stance against the Ram Janmabhoomi movement, a stance that I’m sure Kabir would have loved. Politically, they did decently for themselves in the years to come. But they also galvanized their opposition, and afterwards…we all know what happened in 1992.

      Ultimately, such hardline positions may satisfy some abstract ideals, but they are completely insensitive to the views of actual Hindus, and the realities of India. And they will end up causing more harm than good.

    2. Demanding that the minority community give up on their place of worship or face it being demolished by a mob is very majoritarian of you.
      Justice demanded the reconstruction of the demolished masjid not rewarding the perpetrators with a Ram temple. Injustice is not acceptable simply because the majority community would riot otherwise.

      Indian secularism is dead. Long live the Hindu Rashtra. But that Rashtra then shouldn’t expect to have a Muslim colony as part of it.

      1. Oh give it a rest. This matter was being litigated since the mid-1800s. It’s much more complicated than you present, and I think you’re well aware of that fact.

        1. It’s really not that complicated. Even the Supreme Court judgement acknowledged that the mosque was desecrated in the 1940s by having idols placed in it and that the demolition was a crime. Yet the land is still awarded to the majority community. All it shows is that Muslims are officially second-class citizens in India. But of course that doesn’t bother supporters of majoritarianism such as yourself.

    1. Isn’t there literally a politician from Chennai named SITARAM Yechury?

      I don’t know why Lefty Southerners play these stupid games that a child could see through.

      1. As i have said earlier, just as Subash Bose said “Give me their surname, and i will tell you their politics “, or something to that effect 😛

      2. Oh hey, Telangana CM would also bring pearls and corals from government for the Sita Rama Kalyanam at Badrachalam at Rama Navami.

        But I still found moment of disorientation at “Rama Lalla”. Relationship with Rama was one of “Maryada Purusha” not the over familiarity or cuteness of Krishna. He is a King who has his wedding on his birthday! What is this lalla business?

        So, yeah, neutral Southerners can also be legitimately confused. Just a data point for your reference.

        1. “But I still found moment of disorientation at “Rama Lalla”. Relationship with Rama was one of “Maryada Purusha” not the over familiarity or cuteness of Krishna.”

          May be you say this because you are not from north india? Rama devotion is particularly strong in the heartland of Awadh (central and eastern UP). Here you will find as much emotional and sentimental attachment to him as you would towards Krishna in Krishna’s native land.

          Some say that Tulsidas’s work was instrumental in popularizing the cult of Rama as he made Rama’s story accessible in local Awadhi language. Tradition of Ram-leela started here. Whatever be the case, here Rama is not just a righteous king. He is family.

        2. Tuslidas is what Martin Luther was to Christianity

          I understand why South/East does n’t connect with Ram. In all states u have a local god (Tirupati, Ganesh, Durga ,Puri etc) as well as the overarching bigger gods (Shiva, Vishnu). In UP Ram plays the role of both the local as well as the overarching one, since UP (and to larger extent Bihar, MP ) do not have a local god. So his effect is amplified.

          Here in UP u would find even dalit homes having book and readings of Ramcharitmanas , which need not be true in other parts of India.

      3. Its the Lalla part that we are clueless about. Ram as a cultural icon is not a proxy for how invested a society is in the RJB issue, as I’d imagine Thai and Indonesian people are indifferent to it. Also would add that dravidian nationalism is a right-wing movement in many ways. The contrarian liberal tweeters and political bloggers are clueless interlopers. We are quite a bit like the hindu nationalists and islamists but with different totems.

  20. https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/what-verdict-says-about-india-today/story-QNPbzncw1A1r6rn1Sbis7I.html

    136 years on, what the Ayodhya verdict means for India

    “To understand how far politics has shifted, recall that after 1992, many spoke of how only reconstruction of the demolished mosque would represent justice. Today, that claim is barely heard. Instead, what India has witnessed is the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s successive electoral victories at the Centre in 2014 and 2019; the coming together of a pan-Hindu electoral constituency across castes; the perception of increased public support for the construction of the temple; the older “secular” opposition’s silence on Ayodhya and even support for the temple as indicated in their responses after the verdict; the domination of the public sphere, especially electronic and social media, by supporters of Hindu causes; and a sense of fatigue and resigned acceptance among Muslims of the fate of mosque. All of this indicates that the BJP had already won the political and intellectual battle on Ayodhya;

    The BJP’s claims of representing the Hindu majority would get a boost. Its electoral tactic of cementing the Hindu vote would get a further fillip. The politics of secularism — or at least old-style secularism as practised by the Congress and socialist parties — would recede even further. All of this will play out to the BJP’s advantage in the Hindi heartland, in particular.”

  21. https://www.livemint.com/opinion/online-views/opinion-ayodhya-2003-uncovering-what-lay-beneath-11573303686925.html

    Opinion | Ayodhya 2003: Uncovering what lay beneath

    Perhaps the only English language writer who was uncovering the Archaeological findings in Ayodhya in real time

    “Re-reading that cover story today, I am surprised that it caused a furore at the time. It seems quite impartial to me—I had balanced every pro-Ram temple interpretation of the archaeological discoveries with a counter-argument. So all I had done was bring something which was well-known locally into the national limelight—that it was quite evident that there had been an older (and much larger) Hindu structure under the Babri mosque. I had not even said that it was a temple.”

    Then the after effects

    “After the story was published, among others, the historian Irfan Habib wrote to Vinod, denouncing it. I think there was even a meeting called at the Delhi Press Club addressed by some leftist historians. I came to know that some colleagues in Outlook were badmouthing me in the media fraternity. I had to inform Vinod about this, since I believed it was bad for the magazine’s image, and Vinod called in the political bureau and told them to cease and desist

    Many years later, years after I had quit Outlook, Vinod, who had just retired after nearly two decades as editor-in-chief of the weekly magazine, was asked by an interviewer whether he regretted carrying any story in it. He said that there was only one—a cover story on the Ayodhya excavations. I felt deeply honoured to be given that special recognition by an editor I had respected so much.”

    1. “…whether he (Vinod Mehta) regretted carrying any story in it. He said that there was only one—a cover story on the Ayodhya excavations.”

      May be regretted it because he thought it cost him the coveted rajya sabha seat?

      while journalists are never a reputable people, vinod mehta was particularly notorious for the extent to which he could sell his pen. he sucked up to gandhi family for decades in the hope of getting a rajya sabha seat which never materialized.

      he carried out hatchet jobs on right wing politicians over ridiculously trivial issues. (I remember once he carried a long article on “corrupt” bhaironsingh shekhwat, over an accusation of bribery of less than 10 rupees that he supposedly took in pre-independence india half a century ago!)

      he wrote an autobiography which he filled with sleaze on long dead movie stars like mina kumari and madhubala, just to rake some moolah in.

      he was so out of touch with reality that once in an article he first wrote a bleeding heart account of the plight of the tribals of chhattisgarh, and then went on to boast about enjoying an expensive blue label scotch in a party just a paragraph down!

      and he counted fellow leftist asshole tarun tejpal (rape accused!) among his friends.

      it was the hypocrites like him that left me completely disillusioned with the entire left/liberal political discourse of india. right wingers may be wrong on many counts too, but they are certainly not so intellectually dishonest.

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