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Showing posts from June, 2021

July 1: Observing communal harmony day in Ahmedabad, a highly segregated city

Activists at Vasant-Rajab memorial on July 1 By Rajiv Shah Celebrated as Communal Harmony Day in Ahmedabad, July 1, 2021 is remembered for the sacrifice of two friends, Vasant Rao Hegishte and Rajab Ali Lakhani, laid down their lives for the cause of communal harmony on the July 1, 1946 in the city. A memorial stands in their memory in Khandni Sheri, Jamalpur, Ahmedabad.

Muslim law board knows not: Yoga's only link with Hinduism is it evolved in India

Mohan Guruswamy* calls All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB)as the Muslim equivalent of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad: *** The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), the Muslim equivalent of the VHP, has opposed the celebration of the International Yoga day on June 21. It has been so for a few years now. It is utterly misguided, unfortunate and silly. The Board describes Yoga as a religious symbol. It is not. It is just a school of balance focused exercises - pure and simple. Like Tai Chi. They specifically cite the Surya Namaskar as offensive when it is nothing but a common sequence of asanas. Most Hindus revere the Sun as it is the giver of life and sustenance. Because of this some of Hindus set aside a portion of their daily worship for making salutations to the Sun by prostrations. This method of adoration affords them so much muscular activity that it takes to some extent the place of physical exercise. Muslims can practice these very same asanas without worshipping the

Musician and follower of Dr Ambedkar? A top voilinist has this rare combination!

Some time back, a human rights defender, Vidya Bhushan Rawat, who frequently writes for Counterview, forwarded to me a video interview with Guru Prabhakar Dhakade, calling him one of India's well known violinists.  Dhakade is based in Nagpur and has devoted his life for the Hindustani classical music. A number of his disciples have now been part of Hindi cinema world in Mumbai, says Rawat. He has performed live in various parts of the country as well as abroad. What however attracted me was Dhakade's assertions in video about Dr BR Ambedkar, India's undisputed Dalit icon. Recorded several years back at his residence and music school in Nagpur, Dhakade not only speaks candidly about issues he faced, but that he is a believer in Dr Ambedkar's philosophy. It is in this context that Dhakade narrates his problems, even as stating that he is determined to achieve his goal. A violinist and a follower of Ambedkar? This was new to me. Rarely do musicians are found to take a