With Gujarat having served a resounding victory to the BJP’s Narendra Modi the “communal socialist” (formerly psuedo-secular) brigade have now diverted attention to Orissa. The violence in Orissa’s Kandhamal District has become their pet peeve. First it was the CPI-Mafioso’s electile dysfunctional Sitaram Yechury drawing imaginary parallels to Gujarat. Now it is the National Minorities Commission trying to get activist in Orissa.

Before we get into what the NCM has to say on Orissa an Offstumped refresher on how dysfunctional a body the NCM has been while allegedly trying to keep our conscience while spending our Taxe Rupees.

So you have a two member fact finding mission from the NCM, Dileep Padgaonkar and Zoya Hasan, visiting Kandhamal and this is what they had to say.

Situation in Orissa more complex than made out to be

Any surprises there ?

Offstumped had pointed this out last month itself that the violence had an affirmative entitlement angle to it more than a communal angle.

What else did they have to say ?

The attacks were  “organised and pre-planned,”

So what new evidence did the NCM uncover to make this charge, after all this was supposed to be a fact finding mission and not a tax payer sponsored junket to the tribal hamlets of Orissa.

Asked who was behind these attacks, Prof. Hasan said: “What we gathered from the people we met is that the Vishwa Hindu Parishad was involved in vitiating the political atmosphere of the area.” Mr. Padgaonkar pointed out that in a matter of a couple of hours in the dead of night, huge trees were felled and roads blocked. “This is an indication of organisation on a massive scale. Besides, how could there be simultaneous attacks across the districts soon after Swami Lakshmananda of the VHP was attacked.”

There is not a shred of  new evidence to establish either “organized” nature of the attacks nor the “pre-planning”. That Christian organizations had expressed fears is public record and Offstumped had pointed this out last month itself, nothing new here. Also rather than claim they have clinching evidence what you have here is the fact finding mission presenting a hypothesis.

Is this what tax payer rupees are going to be spent on when sending a fact finding mission –  to come up with a hypothesis !

It becomes obvious to the most naive of observers here that the NCM team did not uncover any specific facts to fix responsibility or accountability for the violence. For if they did uncover such evidence they would not be forwarding a hypothesis. They would be demanding specific actions against specific individuals and organizations. Notice the NCM here is not making any specific accusation but only making sweeping generalizations with its hypothesis.

Not that the hypothesis is novel. It is in fact the same old beaten template that the “Communal Socialists” brigade has been unsucessful at pushing in Gujarat and now wants to apply to Orissa.

In fact the NCM’s bias and partisanship becomes very clear when the fact finding mission rather than present facts started to fish in the troubled waters of Kandhamal’s politics with these remarks

While conceding the existence of a “long simmering” Koi-Pana conflict over extending Scheduled Tribe status to the Christian Pana community, the NCM team said an equally important component of “the communal disturbance was the anti-conversion campaign conducted by the VHP and Sangh Parivar organisations for the last few years.”

What facts does the NCM to have make this allegation especially when, as highlighted by Offstumped, there was no reference to the Christian angle in all media reports leading up to the Christmas day violence and even the Christian bodies in their first complaint after the violence blamed only the Koi outfit while making no mention of the VHP or Bajrang Dal.

The following remark by the NCM is proof clear that this body is functioning way beyond its brief to question the constitutionally guaranteed rights of individuals and organizations to conduct their affairs

 the NCM also questioned the anti-conversion movement carried out by Swami Lakshmananda .

Offstumped poser to Dileep Padgaonkar : For the journalist that you once were, it is surprising that there are no new facts to report by your fact finding mission. All we see here are hypotheses and political questions. It is a shame that tax payer rupees are being subverted by you to push a political agenda in the name of national conscience keeping. Be honest to yourself and to those hapless victims of violence in Kandhamal by presenting new facts to fix responsibility and accountability for the violence. In the absence of such facts, please do not fish in the troubled waters of Kandhamal with hypotheses that will only further vitiate the atmosphere.

Originall posted here:


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