For 10 years, Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi has chosen to answer with silence—and election victories—the many questions about his role or lack of it in the Gujarat carnage of 2002. He has walked out of TV interviews, glared at interviewers, sidestepped every court stricture. About the only time he sat down with an interrogator was when he faced a member of the SIT in March 2010; his responses are now in the public domain. But Modi still hasn’t answered many key questions. He can start here.
Read Narendra Modi’s answers to SIT questions
To your 25 questions for Narendra Modi (Dear Narendrabhai, could you please...), my one simple question is: why in this eight years of ‘secular’ Congress government at the Centre haven’t they been able to shake Modi, put him behind bars? Even the NHRC hasn’t been able to do anything. It only means there is a lack of credible evidence to it all. And this when even our notoriously slow courts have been put in superfast mode.
T.N. Vaidyanathapura, Bangalore
The only question to ask Modi and his supporters is: were you born like this or did you work at becoming so devoid of compassion and so full of hate?
Ajit Tendulkar, Seattle
This refers to question number 13 of the 25 questions you have asked Narendra Modi. Despite Ahmedabad being the worst-affected city and with the most number of killings, the then police commissioner not only survived in his position but also kept getting promoted till he retired as the top cop of Gujarat. Post-retirement too, he got a lucrative assignment as a security advisor with a leading business group of Gujarat. He must have done a yeoman’s job for the CM and his men. Compare his record with the others, who couldn’t provide the same kind of services—Sreekumar, Sanjeev Bhatt and Rahul Sharma, to name a few.
Rajeev Matta, Mumbai
As an ex-Gujarat CM said, Modi thinks of winning “all the time”, at any cost. This, of course, entails extreme options: in the future, he’ll either be PM or go to jail.
Najid Hussain, Newark, US
If Modi was wrong, he’d never have been re-elected. Compare him to the CMs of Maharashtra and you’ll know why he is so admired.
Of all your stupid questions, the most hilarious was No. 23, about “censoring newspapers like Sandesh and Gujarat Samachar”? Are you really asking Modi to shut down a newspaper? Had he done that, you’d have been screaming “media censorship” and slapping yet another case, nay question, against him.
Whether Modi answers or not, the people of this country know the answer.
Indu P. Singh, Delhi
I hope you’ll follow up on these questions and not rest till Modi apologises and provides some redressal.
Vivian Noronha, Panaji
What kind of nutcase question was Question No. 9—“Why do critics persist in arguing...personal revenge and vendetta”? A more relevant question is: has Outlook no shame in publishing trash?
Ganesan, New Jersey
This is just character assassination. You think he’s guilty, then go defeat him at the hustings. Also, hasn’t the SC rejected Sanjeev Bhatt’s affidavit? What is the point in bringing up his name again?
Why do you keep talking about the post-Godhra events and not the tragedy itself which led to the riots?
This whole ‘Gujarat riots industry’ feeds thousand of vultures. If it’s brought to an end, most of them would be out of business. Truth and justice are the least of their concerns.
Not to forget: in June 2014, we’ll complete three decades of Operation Bluestar. I hope Outlook will start its research right now and pose similar questions to those who matter.
Thank you to all those who have taken the trouble to read the article and share their thoughts. Out of the arguments made here, there are two that perhaps need answering. So here they go.
1. The first part of the article compares outcomes (relative percentages of population of the religions concerned) irrespective of the process that led to those outcomes - whether immigration, relatively faster population growth or conversions. This was for two reasons. One, to put the figure of 2.3 per cent in "numerical perspective", as the article itself explained. The second reason was that outcomes are ultimately what the crux of debate is about. The rest of the article in any case dealt with process - or conversions in this case, from both a contemporary and historical perspective.
2. Some commenters have tried to cast doubts on the reliability of Census 2001. Those who do this should bear in mind that Census 2001 was conducted by a BJP government. Considering the extreme importance that BJP gives to this issue, it would be reasonable to expect that IF it had perceived a problem with the methodology that was distorting the numbers, it would have fixed it. As the article mentioned, BJP or BJP-supported governments have been in power for 10 of the last 40 years, or about a quarter of the time, and the only reasonable conclusion one can arrive at is that any misreporting of numbers, real or perceived, would be marginal and hence, not of importance.
To all other arguments made, my answer is the following: Please read the article again, with particular focus on the quotations of Vivekananda and Monier Williams, and the history of the missionary efforts in Bengal and their outcome.
The arrow of questions posed to Modi is bound to miss its target, as the latter is not charged for felons narrated. The judiciary has absolved Modi from the charges levelled against him, let alone the mystery lying behind the silence of law enforcers, who reportedly turned mute spectators to the gory massacre. The clouds over the exclusive identification and destruction of assets of Muslims,sparing those of Hindus,appear to have moved far away from our vision. Though Modi has come out successful without any legal scratches for all the inhuman murders of innocent kids, and pregnant women, the soul searching question of who is accountable for the lawlessness leaves many a moral, ethical scratches on the PM contender who is likely to tread the path of Manmohan Singh who has no qualms in disowning his accountability for all the scams perpetrated under his very nose.
Thanks for the link. The rebuttals were solid and to the point.
These are very good answers given to the 25 questions.
Moderator's Note: Please do see the responses to earlier such "rebuttals": Narendra Modi - Unanswered Questions
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