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Three questions for Madhu Kishwar: Dilip D’Souza

June 13, 2013

Guest post by DILIP D’SOUZA

Dear Madhu,

20+ years ago, I picked you up at the airport in Austin and you stayed at my home there for a few days. You had come there to deliver a lecture, as I’m sure you remember. We developed a friendship based on a degree of mutual respect and liking. I think you’ll agree? Several years after that I remember a stimulating afternoon sitting with you in Panchgani, catching up on many things and discussing various issues threadbare.

We haven’t met in some years now, but I’m going to call on the privilege of our 20+ years of friendship as I write these lines.

I have no problem at all with your desire to learn about Gujarat and Narendra Modi for yourself. Nor with your desire to see beyond what you’ve called the “targeting” of Modi. Nor with your speaking in support of Modi: if there are people who criticize Modi, I understand and accept that there are those who support him — it’s a democracy we live in after all. Nor with your speaking your mind: you have always done so and it’s the least I expect from you. (In turn, it’s the least you should expect from me).

No Madhu, I have no problem with any of that. And I’m not going to get into debates about Gujarat’s development (as with most things, there are multiple ways of looking at it). Not even into debates about what Modi did or did not do in 2002 to stop the massacres. I travelled there in that time and I have my own opinions, but I realize others see things differently.

There are probably three things I do have problems with.

One is in your reply to Zahir Janmohammed. Your third sentence there says his letter “annoyed me no end.” Your sixth sentence says “my annoyance kept increasing at your jaundiced viewpoint.” It seemed to me this set the tone for the whole reply. So I’d like to ask: Zahir’s viewpoint is clearly and dramatically different from yours; does that necessarily mean it is “jaundiced”?

These are wrenching, divisive issues you and he and all of us are grappling with. I can’t deny they get people on all sides annoyed. But you actually end your letter to Zahir by saying we need to “know how to bridge divides rather than widen them”. How do we bridge divides if we start out by calling the other guy “jaundiced”? What happened to respecting the other guy’s views and engaging with them? Is it not conceivable that some might see your views as jaundiced? And if so, what if they began a note to you by saying “I’m annoyed by your jaundiced views”? Would you feel like continuing a dialogue with such a person?

After all, I didn’t agree with some of what you said that afternoon in Panchgani (among other things, we discussed the RSS). Yet I think you will agree, if you remember that conversation, that I didn’t call your opinions jaundiced, and that it was indeed a stimulating afternoon.

I don’t know if you think this is a trivial thing. But I don’t. I think this is fundamental to any attempt at understanding and dialogue. And given the divisions and polarization I see around me, we need dialogue more than ever. Or the anger and hatred, I fear, will one day consume us all.

The second is your criticism of Teesta Setalvad (for example, in your interview with News Live here) — among other things, for all that’s happened with the SIT. Now I will support fully your right to disagree with Teesta. But surely you know — to pick just one thing to wonder about — of the discrepancies between the preliminary and final SIT reports? For example look at a couple of side-by-side excerpts here. What happened to “The explanation given by Shri Modi is unconvincing and it definitely hinted at the growing minority population” in the preliminary report?

This is the kind of thing that has people, and not just Teesta, asking serious questions about the SIT report.

The third is one Kodnani. For me, one thing about 2002 stands out and so many years later, I cannot see any way to suppress its implications. In 2007, after he won the Gujarat Assembly elections, Modi actually appointed Maya Kodnani as his Minister of Women’s Development and Child Welfare. He did this despite knowing what she had done in 2002 (for which she is now in prison). We know so because Modi’s own government, in which Kodnani was a Minister, actually filed an affidavit in the High Court in 2009 saying Kodnani “was the leader of mob … she was instigating the mob to commit crime and therefore she was playing the main role.” What’s more, “she is a minister in the present government, so there are ample chances of tampering with prosecution witnesses by way of giving threat.” (See this article for some details).

Overseeing the welfare of Gujarat’s children and its women’s development for a period a few years ago was a lady doctor who, a few years before that, had orchestrated the murder in Naroda-Patiya of 90+ Gujaratis, including 34 children and 32 women. Knowing that history, Modi appointed her to that position.

It’s simple, then: A man who knowingly appoints a murderer as Minister of Women’s Development and Child Welfare is not a man I want to see as PM of this country. It astonishes me that anyone would.

Good luck, Madhu. As always, I wish you only the best.


49 Comments leave one →
  1. Ayush permalink
    June 13, 2013 5:48 AM

    At first, when people would make the comparison between Modi and Hitler, i was always of the opinion that it was indulging in hyperbole however much i felt insecure of his politics. .
    The problem i have had with indicting Modi for myself has always been that the courts have not found him guilty yet. And should I, like many others, fall into the trap of believing, of trusting the media courts? How do we truly “know” if someone is guilty when so many people have so many different opinions? When all you hear is polemics? You search then for a logical sequence.

    This is exactly that. Powerful. Really is. You did not use polemics but used cogent logic to make such a strong indictment of Modi. It seems irrefutable.
    All those people who intend to see Modi shake India out of her inertia should realize that in our earnestness to see better( and much needed) governance, we don’t make the mistake that the Germans made.

    • sanjeev rai permalink
      June 13, 2013 10:16 AM

      Guess what, the courts have acquitted Sajjan Kumar, so does that absolve him of the despicable crimes of 1984?

      • ayush permalink
        June 15, 2013 4:20 AM

        Obviously. The basic premise of right and wrong in matters of crime can only indisputably be established by the courts. In any country it, this is the primary objective that the courts service. And as citizens of a given country, we repose that much faith in the courts of our country. It is only there that the rigorous method of jurisprudence is followed to arrive at a conclusion. The only real method i trust.
        Until such a time, anything else is merely conjecture and polemics. Anyone can have any opinion about anybody however unfounded. The claim of tampering with evidence can potentially be made against any innocent individual. It is then to bring some sanity to the proceedings that the courts have been established and as citizens, we have no choice but to trust them.
        The day we lose all faith in the courts, that is the day the republic of India ceases to exist and this society fails.

        • Simantini permalink
          October 10, 2013 4:06 PM

          Courts can indict only when there is irrefutable evidence. Available evidence may not always be sufficient, not to speak of manipulation of witnesses and facts by powerful persons. Therefore it is important for all of us to form informed opinions and judgments.This has nothing to do with losing faith in courts.

          • Anil Kumar Dikshit permalink
            October 11, 2013 11:35 AM

            Your ‘informed opinion’ is ‘surmises and conjectures’, if it goes beyond available judicial evidence. Only a Court can judge a Court.

    • vispi kaikobad permalink
      June 13, 2013 3:39 PM

      The problem with the Modi saga is that the harder he tries to avoid a discussion on 2002, the stronger the conviction grows in the minds of people that he has something to hide. Politics is a battle of perceptions and the polarisation of views is a fallout he must endure, at his own peril. Even in today’s India, there are thankfully enough people who will not overlook basic human decency just because of the chimera of growth and development.

  2. Anuradha permalink
    June 13, 2013 11:53 AM

    I think this is one of the best argued, well articulated letter regarding the entire Kishwar’s discourse on Modi and Gujarat. As a researcher, I have often referred to and read Kishwar’s work, admiring her independent stand on various development related issues. These past months, however, have been very disappointing. Not because of her stand on Modi, but her vehement propaganda and open disdain for people who do not subscribe to her point of view, leaves no room for debate or discussion of the issue, at all

    • Asma Rizwan permalink
      June 13, 2013 2:41 PM

      you are very right Anuradha. Bushism has been adopted by Madhu. Either you are with modi or you are an enemy.

  3. June 13, 2013 12:14 PM

    most people including Madhu Kishwar give Modi a free pass on Godhra as if it was nothing compared to the aftermath. If indeed it was spontaneous, i would give him a free pass too. After all a small bunch of cops can hardly stop a mob. But Modi called it a Planned Conspiracy. That puts the ball firmly in his court. It makes Godhra mishap his failure as much as the central govts (which was also headed by his colleagues). To then call him an able administrator is really looking through “rose tinted glasses”. For him to oversee or allow or be unable to stop the aftermath of this failure, is at best a compounding, and at worst a misuse of his office to eliminate opponents to his ideology

    • nishi permalink
      June 13, 2013 1:42 PM

      Ya, just like Assam riots, Delhi Riots, UP Riots, inlast 60 years more people were killed just for no reason under congress rule, if you want to remove tinted glass pls see wikipedia

    • V n saroja permalink
      June 17, 2013 8:11 PM

      No it really is the bjp dominance when it comes to have preventable incidents not being prevented. The misbehaviour of tne kar sevaks was well known. If the retaliation was sudden, one would not hold it against him. But he said it was pre-planned in which case it was completely Advani, nitish and modi’s resp to stop it. Whether or not congress cms are able to is irrelevant. It is not a quota of how many you are allowed

      • Shiv permalink
        July 8, 2013 8:05 PM

        Investigations have revealed that there was a meeting a day before of Godhra carnage, also gasoline was bought way before Train reached Godhra. Since courts have accepted, Godhra was a planned conspiracy, questions should not be raised anymore. Regarding, someones responsibility to stop it, do you really beleive that we have infrastructure to detect every incident before hand, or for that matter money to create such infrastructure. Lets not live in wonderland and see the ground reality. We are far away from a system where life of citizens could be guaranteed against a calamity (natural or man made).

        • V N Saroja permalink
          July 10, 2013 10:06 AM

          I agree, but the same guys seem to have different standards for others. As recently as this sunday. Until a few weeks ago they were partners in the administration in Bihar. Since then security at gaya was not reduced, if anything, a drill identified gaps that needed to be filled. yet within hours of the blast, BJP was out there blaming all and sundry. Spotting and Stopping 50 people should ideally be much easier than spotting and stopping 5. Thats in a non-hypocritical honest world.

  4. June 13, 2013 1:39 PM

    One of the most best stated arguments! Thank you Dilip. Your logic has killed all arguments in favour of Modi.

  5. Asma Rizwan permalink
    June 13, 2013 2:40 PM

    Bravo! Mr D’souza. some people give simple reasons in most delightful & manner full way. you are one of them . Madhu Kishwar and many of us can learn a lot from you. Thanks Shivam for posting it for us

  6. Vinod permalink
    June 13, 2013 3:48 PM

    D’Souza’s article and the comments I have read indicate prejudice at work. If you don’t like prejudice focus on the facts.

    Fact about Q 1 : Kishwar’s retort to Janmohammed’s complaint was driven by annoyance. — This does not in anyway blemish Kishwar’s writings, it merely indicates her annoyance at Janmohammed’s complaint. Do you have any complaint about Janmohammed’s complaint? Did Kishwar’s reply to him not clarify why she is annoyed?

    Fact about Q 2: There is a difference between the initial and final reports of the SIT. — Is that unusual? Why should the two be the same? Are the conclusions of the final report not supported by facts? Or is it that you don’t like the final conclusions, irrespective of the facts?

    Fact about Q3: Modi appointed Kodnani minister in 2007 and his Govt filed an affidavit against her in 2009. — There is no question to Kishwar here. But there is a definite judgement by D’Souza. It is clear that the appointment was 2 years *before* Modi’s govt. concluded that she was to be charged for murder. I fail to see the logic in D’Souza’s statement that Modi knew she was a murderer, 2 years before the charge. What fact drives him to that conclusion? He didn’t mention any.

    This entire article smells like prejudice to me – a shameless and desperate attempt to murder the reputation of a writer who disagrees with you. Besides spreading hate about Modi.

    D’Souza, are you motivated by a fear of Modi? Or of angry Hindus?

    I’m motivated to write this response to your article – by an anger against the Congress who have damaged the country enormously in the past 9 years (as they had between 1984 to 89 – remember we were bankrupt by ’91). I’m motivated enough to look for someone to lead this country out of this mess we are in. From what I see, Modi has it in him to improve things considerably.

    Also, I don’t think he will order the killings of Muslims on becoming PM. What kind of a person would believe such a thing? A prejudiced one?

    • June 19, 2013 2:33 PM

      Kishwar’s entire report is based on some interviews. it is hardly a piece of diligent research. But she takes offence to his saying he has equally met people who say to the opposite of what she has heard. So yes she says why she is annoyed, but does it stand the test of good research?

      I think the reason for dropping the initial findings have not been explained by the SIT. The new findings dont always contradict but are a subset of the original, is the argument i have heard ( i have not read them both in detail to compare them word/thought by word/thought)

      On Kodnani, the govt was forced to file. if the supreme court had not taken over after the acquittals in the Best Bakery Case, there is always a possibility that the other cases may have gone the same way.

      that Modi was the at the helm when this happened, cannot be disputed. That he has not taken responsibility and brought out a paper listing the lapses that led to the situation, i have not seen. That riots happened under other regimes, is not an excuse of any kind, it is not a margin of error provided to each govt. With internet, mobile phones etc. proof is easier to get now than ever before. All administrations have to live with it. If pointing out these lapses helps all the loopholes to close, why not? Why should that be a labeling as “spreading hate”? If he is above board, let him provide the evidence. If not, he needs face the same questions that others do. Whatever the elections throw up, we will all live with it, whether or not we like it.

    • June 19, 2013 4:54 PM

      Vinod asks: “Are the conclusions of the final report not supported by facts?”

      This is not under dispute. If you look at the side-by-side examination of the preliminary and final SIT reports mentioned in the post, you’ll see that the language prior to the last sentences in each excerpt (the conclusion) is identical. The question, then, is how come the SAME process of reasoning — as spelled out in those prior sentences — leads to one conclusion in the preliminary report but a diametrically opposite conclusion in the final report?

      This wouldn’t raise your eyebrows?

      • Vinod permalink
        June 19, 2013 9:24 PM

        @dcubed – Is there a presumption, in your estimate, that the first one was unbiased and the latter biased?

        Your reply to that question must consider that the SIT was not created by the Gujarat govt but by the Supreme Court, mustn’t it? Therefore, either the SC’s SIT, run by CJI Altamas Kabir, is objective or it is biased towards Modi. Also, you could argue that the Gujarat govt holds more power over the independent SC than the Central govt. or vice versa.

        Or you could say, the SIT figured that they were completely wrong to start with and covered their over-exposed biases. Oops, should that have been ‘bases’?

        • June 20, 2013 6:56 PM

          First, I’m not sure how I got the moniker dcubed here but my full name on a comment from 2-3 days ago. Nevertheless, both are me…

          I am making no presumption of bias. I am simply offering one reason some people have questions about the SIT report. If you’re not one of those people, I’m fine with that. But this is, nevertheless, one reason.

  7. Bindu Desai permalink
    June 13, 2013 5:21 PM

    Well writtten and cogently argued!

  8. Tarique permalink
    June 13, 2013 8:18 PM

    We are all waiting for the bus to El Dorado, the invidious raconteur had promised us. Any answers Ms Kishwar?

  9. June 14, 2013 4:23 AM

    First of all how do we know Modi knew of the Maya’s role?, doesnt everyone wait atleast for chargesheet to be filed? Didnt she step down once filed. Also isnt Teesta already accused of tutoring witness?:, .

  10. June 14, 2013 7:00 PM

    Great stuff Dilip. We spent only one evening together in Calcutta after a fairly trivial event. I enjoyed the session and I hope you did too. I admire your ability to remain cogent and logical in the face of gross illogic. I admit that I am unable to do so, especially when talking to committed ideologues of whichever hue.
    More power to you.

  11. Rajesh permalink
    June 15, 2013 2:34 PM

    Besides Maya Kodnani, there is Amit Shah. He is accused of engineering the false encounter that killed Sohrabuddin Sheikh and Tulsiram Prajapati. Sheikh and Prajapati allegedly were extortionists. Builders in Ahmedabad approached Amit Shah, then Gujarat’s Home Minister. Shah conspired with Vanzara and other cops to have Sheikh and Prajapati killed as terrorists in an encounter. The Home Minister was using cops to murder alleged criminals at the behest of influential builders. And this was happening right under Modi’s nose. Talk of Modi’s good governance! Shah was arrested, is out on bail, and is now the BJP’s Uttar Pradesh in-charge.

  12. jerome permalink
    June 15, 2013 7:02 PM

    Dilip: Time for another book… you voice of reason will be a force to reckon with in the present times of fascism in disguise.

  13. vikrant permalink
    June 15, 2013 10:56 PM

    jiyo mama! best reply to madhu kishwar yet…

  14. June 17, 2013 10:56 AM

    Watched the News Live interview for which you have given the link . From 28:56 Madhu Kishwar begins to talk about Bombay riots that took place after the bomb blasts… This is the quality of her understanding of riots. Or of activists. Communalism Combat was founded after the riots and Teesta Setalvad & others have been asking for implementation of SriKrishna commission report recommendations. The report itself was published by Javed Anand . A copy of the report can be downloaded from their website.

    Well, the “riot after the blast” reminded me of

    • June 17, 2013 3:45 PM

      Glad you caught that, about the riots “of 1990 that happened after the blasts.” I was hoping somebody else would notice and comment on it — I’ve already been told I “harp on” that a little too much.

      For the record, of course, the Bom riots happened in December 1992 and January 1993. The blasts, on March 12 1993. After the riots. Not the other way around.

      • Anil Noronha permalink
        June 19, 2013 8:29 PM

        Thanks Dilip for stating the logical, factual and direct simply. In any other nation with a reasonably developed jurisprudence, destroying sensitive and crucial tapes of call records and police communication by the leader of an administration under the fig leaf of it being past the expiry period for keeping records, would be adequate to invite severe reprimand and fix responsibility.

  15. Yawayeh permalink
    June 18, 2013 12:17 AM

    I am wondering was the SIT fixed? perhaps an eye wash?
    As said for Maya Kodnani and Modi – wish same standard be applied to Sajjan Kumar, Jagdish Tytler, who were Minister in Central Govt while the case was going against them! Congress should never be trusted to govern in that case!
    Further “she is a minister in the present government, so there are ample chances of tampering with prosecution witnesses by way of giving threat.” – Did she? What is the outcome??

    • June 19, 2013 2:38 PM

      I think with internet and mobile phones, more evidence is easily available. If in 1984, someone had a picture of either of these guys in action or if the first FIR had their names, they would not have gotten away either. We should be happy that we now have means to catch such people. But can we let people we have evidence against get away because 20 years ago some else did?

  16. June 18, 2013 5:59 PM

    Love the balance in your views and the simple hard facts which are impossible to ignore. To me, just Madhu Kodnani is evidence enough. You might enjoy reading the story of the awakening of a spent nation written completely in verse at Would be honoured to have your comments.

  17. June 19, 2013 10:09 AM

    I am no fan of Narendra Modi. But I have the same degree of indifference / antipathy for all politicians who are corrupt/dishonest/ tainted/ have unaccounted money/ unlimited assets/nexus with criminals . I would not like to see any of them as the Prime Minister of this country.

    • yogi1to4 permalink
      September 29, 2013 2:44 PM

      You won’t have a Prime Minsiter then!

  18. Srivatsa Mahesh permalink
    June 19, 2013 7:51 PM

    regarding Kodnani, in the article you cite, it says that the government filed the affidavit based on the findings of the SIT. Isnt it possible that the SIT filed its findings after 2007? Or were the SIT findings available in 2007 during cabinet formation?

  19. June 28, 2013 7:10 PM

    Dear Madhu,
    My only question to you is ‘What happened ?’
    What happened that was so serious which changed you from being a Teesta Satelvad with a Muslim surname to being a Smiriti Irani with a Muslim surname.

    This, for me, is simply amazing.

    The only parallel I can think of is the late lamented Christopher Hitchens, who from being a Trotskyist during 1991 Gulf war who criticized it and George Bush Sr, turned into a near-Neocon. by the time it came the turn of G W Jr. to invade Iraq again in 2003.

    Of course, 12 good years had elapsed between the two Gulf Wars, and Mr Hitchins had received a lot of lucrative positions in a lot of ‘discussion groups’ and ‘think tanks’ along with some juicy positions like editor of Vanity Fair, etc. and of course rave reviews & sales for his books and a title of being ‘one of the 100 most significant intellectuals’ (what ever that means…). But, in his defense, a lot had changed from 1991 to 2003.

    But I cannot comprehend your ‘conversion’ really-trust me that I pinched myself while reading your response- because this came as in a flash … just like that.

    I guess all interested in your subject would like to know the ‘real truth’ … now that would be tantalizing … really … !!!

    Until then I would think that the old adage that ‘all have a price’ will beat my belief-system yet again …!!!

    Many thanks

  20. July 2, 2013 1:20 PM

    Madhu Kishwar Responds to Dilip D’ Souza

    Dear Dilip,

    Like you, I too value and cherish our 20 year plus friendship. I am very happy to see that our respect and goodwill for each other remains intact despite occasional or frequent differences of opinion on this or that issue. This is rare in today’s vitiated and sharply polarized political environment.

    I appreciate your well-meaning attempt at pointing out to me that I should avoid using abrasive words if I wish to build bridges of communication. I will try my best to keep this in mind though I can’t promise I will always be able to keep my annoyance or anger under a tight leash.

    However, it surprises me that you did not think it appropriate to tender similar advice to Aditya Nigam or Shuddhabrata Sen Gupta who have been far nastier in attacking me on Kafila than I was to Zahir. Despite my annoyance, I actually took the trouble to take every single point raised by Zahir and explained with utmost seriousness why his account was untrustworthy. But what does Aditya Nigam do? Start with a personal attack dubbing me a “Spin Doctor and Propagandist” so that he can justify his imperious declaration that he has “no faith in facts”—he is only interested in “the discourse” or ideology. And since I don’t share his ideological framework, I deserve to be treated with disdain.

    I will try and answer each of the three questions you have posed in the same spirit of camaraderie that you have displayed.

    1. As far as Zahir Janmohamed is concerned, I could well have avoided words like “jaundiced” and “annoyance”. But it surprises me that friends and well-wishers of Zahir are attacking me (you are not included in that because you are the only one who hasn’t talked in the attack mode) instead of pointing out to Zahir what a weak case he presented against Modi. He claims to be writing a research based book on post Godhra Muslims of Gujarat. Do you really think the way he built his case regarding neglect of Juhapura, and the figures and statistics he cited to critique Modi’s governance qualify as even half serious journalism, leave alone social science research?

    My very first visit to Juhapura showed visible evidence that Zahir was grossly misrepresenting facts. Since then I’ve gathered more information on Juhapura and feel even more convinced that his story of discriminatory treatment of Juhapura is built on a string of untruths. But he gets away with it because Modi bashing is ideologically fashionable.

    You also need to respond to the reasons I gave for my “annoyance”. Zahir has done precious little for people of Juhapura. All the people I talked to had not even heard of his name. I have serious problem with human rights activists who have very little ground work to show but start globetrotting the moment there is a problem in India. What is your take on that?

    2. As for Teesta and the interim SIT report, I learnt from very reliable sources that SIT members admitted that they went to Gujarat deeply influenced by the propaganda against Modi and were convinced he was guilty and their job was to nail him. As the enquiry proceeded, they realized they were acting on wrong assumptions. They also resented the fact that Teesta put enormous pressure on the SIT as well as on courts to influence the course of investigation. They have presented enough evidence to the Supreme Court of her using foul means to implicate Modi.
    The SIT team has officers whose integrity is believed to be above board. A Modi hostile Supreme Court bench, watchdogs of the Congress party including Teesta Setalvad were keeping a hawk like watch on the SIT while they were carrying on their investigations. Do you think with an openly anti Modi judge like Justice Aftab Alam who gave many biased orders against Modi; the SIT could have played foul to exonerate Modi?

    None of you have called Teesta to account when she has been indicted by courts or used hate speech in criticizing Modi. It is precisely because she went overboard in unleashing a national and international hate campaign solely targeting Modi that people like me became sceptical of her mission and motives. There is growing evidence that she misused funds collected in the name of riot victims. None of you speak out against it.

    I’m surprised it hasn’t bothered human rights activists, including you that Teesta has acted at the behest of the Congress Party whose own track record of instigating riots and promoting divisive politics is decidedly far worse than any other party. From day one, Teesta has been openly funded by the Congress Party to go after the BJP. I became sceptical of her politics much before the Modi saga began. Way back in 1999, she misused Manushi’s name in a mischievous advertisement campaign to attack BJP just before the general election that year. I had protested against the draft of the ad text in the meeting of NGOs called by Teesta to become co-signatories to the anti BJP ad campaign. And yet Manushi’s name was added to the list of signatories.

    I had no love lost for BJP then or nor do I have any dealings with the BJP now. In fact, I have written many more articles critiquing BJP brand of politics than that of Congress. And yet I could not subscribe to the patent distortion of facts Teesta put in the anti-BJP ad which was released to all major newspapers of the country. I became even more sceptical of her actions when I realized that the Congress Party had funded the entire ad campaign. The least she owed us all was an open disclosure of her political alliance.

    Among numerous other acts of commission and omission, including humungous financial frauds and scams, the following communal riots have taken place during Congress regimes post 2002. Why has Teesta never gone after those chief ministers with the same maniacal zeal as she does after Modi? The 4 lakh victims of Assam riots have got neither justice nor due compensation. Why has Teesta never demanded arrest of Assam CM or Home Minister? Why does she not want Supreme Court to enquire into the role of Congress government in Assam riots of 2012?

    She has adopted extremely unethical means to run the Hate and Destroy Modi campaign. Thankfully for India, it has now begun to produce a massive wave of anger and outrage all over the country. I am not the only one who felt compelled to check the facts for myself and found that the country has been fed with humungous lies.

    If all these wilful acts of cheating the nation do not deserve anger, what does? How can one build bridges of communication with someone who knowingly commits dangerous frauds on the people of India?

    Someone like you should use your influence to give Teesta, Shabnam Hashmi and others of their persuasion a sense of balance and integrity in conducting their politics.

    3. As for Maya Kodnani, I have not studied her case at all. Therefore, I cannot speak with confidence about her. All I can say is that many knowledgeable and trust worthy people in Gujarat have told me that she has been wrongly implicated. But I don’t take a position on her case till I study it personally. However, to your statement, “A man who knowingly appoints a murderer as Minister of Women’s Development and Child Welfare is not a man I want to see as PM of this country” all I can say is: I wish you and the rest of the anti-Modibiradari were as clear sighted when dealing with known murderers of the Congress and the Left parties. The track record of CPM in West Bengal is far bloodier than anything ever done in BJP ruled states. As far as the Congress is concerned, let me provide you a brief list.

    Rajiv Gandhi not only justified the 1984 massacre of Sikhs but he also protected all the Congressmen who were responsible for the pogroms. Kamal Nath is well known to have played a very active role in the 1984 massacre of Sikhs. Neither Teesta nor you protest over the fact that in decades after 1984, he has been given the most powerful ministries in successive Congress governments. Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar have also held important portfolios in the Congress led governments or in the Party.

    Omar Abdullah is known to have gotten a senior leader of his own party beaten so severely by the police in his official residence that he died a day later. His party men were up in arms against him for this as well as the cold blooded killings by the J&K police of 114 young kids who were protesting against his misrule. Congress Party has protected him from the wrath of his own people. And yet none of you have asked for his dismissal, leave alone trial.

    When Pratibha Patil was handpicked by Sonia Gandhi, Maharashtra’s Congressmen protested publicly and through the media that she was unfit for the job because of her involvement in a murder case as well as numerous scams. You did not express similar outrage then.

    Over a 100 encounter killings during Nitish Kumar’s reign have reached the National Human Rights Commission on charges of them being fake encounters. None of you have asked for the head of Nitish or CBI enquiries against him. Gehlot’s reign saw police go and kill Muslims in a masjid. No enquiry against Gehlot or his Home Minister. Nor any outrage that there have been numerous communal riots in Rajasthan during Gehlot’s tenure. I can understand Assam’s Nellie massacre under Congress rule being forgotten because it happened way back in 1983. But why has the widespread violence of 2012 which devastated hundreds of Assam villages been erased out of memory?

    All those who are quick to not just condemn Modi but also demand his head even while courts have thus far exonerated him of all charges—don’t seem at all pained or bothered about the endless crimes committed under Congress regimes, nor about systematic subversion of all institutions—the judiciary, the police, CBI, IB, media and much else by the Congress Party.

    Minority rights activists had once appealed to the International Court of Justice against Modi. I think this time round some of us might have to urge the International Court of Justice to set up an independent commission to investigate the misinformation and outright lies fed to the nation through obliging media houses to destroy and demonize a man who has emerged as the most powerful challenger to the crime and corruption ridden Congress party which is functioning more as a mafia gang than a political party worthy of a democracy.

    As of now, whatever evidence I have examined convinces me that no man in recent history has been so maligned and hounded so mercilessly for doing all the right things as Narendra Modi. But the issue is not Narendra Modi. He doesn’t need me to defend him. The issue is subversion of democracy in India by systematic manipulation of the media, letting loose a divisive hate campaign designed to create mistrust and fear among Hindus, Muslims and Christians, manipulating agencies of the state—including the judiciary, CBI, IB, police and much else—all to serve the partisan ends of the Congress party’s ruling Dynasty.

    That is why there is such a powerful sympathy wave combined with genuine admiration for Modi’s resilience and determination to stay steadfast in his mission of rebuilding institutions of governance in Gujarat to make them serve citizens instead of use political office for loot and plunder.

    I assure you that if during the course of my Gujarat study, I discover facts that paint a contrary picture, if I discover that Modi is indeed the monster that many of you believe he is, I will admit my mistake openly and apologize for my naivete.


    Madhu Purnima Kishwar

    • nishi permalink
      July 2, 2013 1:43 PM

      Very well articulated reply Madhuji, the problem is that Congress has made that kind of culture that if I say Lord Rama, I am communal and If I say Allah, I am secular. The point is that how many time muslim leaders have shown that kind of generosity

      • July 11, 2013 1:04 PM

        Dear Nishi,
        Firstly, there are not many (in fact any) Muslim leaders in India.
        Secondly, whatever local leaders are there do not get enough media for you to know.
        Thirdly, in today’s time-you can in fact shout- Lord Ram, but others cannot. Hindutva vadis can talk about building Ram temple even when the matter is sub-judice, so, please stop playing the victim card when you are clearly not victims.

    • July 6, 2013 10:59 AM

      The second of the three questions was based on a blog of mine which was in response to your Modinama-8. There you had claimed that Modi’s statement was truncated by Zee TV which distorted its meaning. Siddharth Varadarajan in a blog ( ) based on his 2002 book, had analysed Modi’s full statement, and placed it in context, quoting other parivar ideologues arguing along similar lines. Then as an add-on I looked at how this statement or hate speeches of Modi were analysed by SIT in its preliminary or final report. May be you should explain what in Modinama-8 survives that

      If your response to it is to appeal to the integrity of the members of the SIT, can you explain why two of the original members of SIT. Geeta Johri and Shivanand Jha were removed by SC or why third member Ashish Bhatia faced allegations of cover up by the Special public prosecutor and his deputy in the Gulberg Society case? The prosecutors quit as a protest, These three founding members in the SIT were the choice of Gujarat govt. Why did SIT member Paramvir Singh quit abruptly citing personal reasons? What do you have to say about the following complaint to the SIT? (Khetan in recent times has been involved with exposes on police frame ups of innocents in UP and Maharashtra )

      About Congress being behind moves to prosecute Modi, will you care to look at the investigations by another SIT, the one monitored by Gujarat HC? The SIT had a nominee each of the Gujarat govt, the Central govt and the lawyers representing the families of victims of fake encounters. Whatever worthwhile investigation was done was by the latter, Satish Verma

      Soon after Modinama 2 came out. I wrote to you asking for the details of preventive detentions in the city of Ahmedabad instead of clubbing the data for all of Gujarat. You said you will answer but that it would take some time. Here I again I repeat and reiterate the charges appearing in the comments section of your Modinama2 which you have not answered so far

  21. Shiv permalink
    July 8, 2013 8:15 PM

    Dear Dilip,

    Only one question, would you accept a person as primeminister who knowingly apointed somebody his foreign minister who was accused of misappropriating funds meant for disabled, or at least unable to manage a 1 crore budget NGO. But again how can we atack holy cow?

  22. October 16, 2013 9:52 PM

    If Madhu says she doesn’t know much about Maya Kodnani I can’t believe it. It’s an utter lie.

  23. Manasi permalink
    February 14, 2016 5:12 AM

    A very thoughtful article. Ms Kishwar needs to read it and reflect upon it.


  1. Three questions for Madhu Kishwar: Dilip DSouza | Kafila | Intercultural Resources
  2. Madhu Mausi, Namo Mamu and the Ghost of Uncle Pepper | Kafila

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