POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 22, 2014 AT 23:42 IST ,  Edited At: Aug 22, 2014 23:42 IST

Outlook archives: U.R. Ananthamurthy

Renowned historian Ramachandra Guha was one of the many leading public figures to pay rich tributes to U.R. Ananthamurthy today. Guha insightfully tweeted: UR Ananthamurthy had three simultaneous careers; as novelist, educationist, and controversialist: and he was influential in all. And true to form, controversy marked the Jnanpith awardee's death as well

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POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 22, 2014 AT 23:42 IST, Edited At: Aug 22, 2014 23:42 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Feb 27, 2013 AT 19:29 IST ,  Edited At: Feb 27, 2013 19:29 IST

Churumuri writes:

Deccan Herald journalist Muthi-ur-Rahman Siddiqui has walked out of the central jail in Bangalore a free man, six months after being named by the city’s police in an alleged Lashkar-e-Toiba plot to target two Kannada journalists and the publisher of the newspaper they were earlier employed in.

Siddiqui had been accused of being the “mastermind” of a gang of 15 in August last year to kill editor Vishweshwar Bhat, columnist Pratap Simha and publisher Vijay Sankeshwar, allegedly for their “right-wing leanings“. The journalists were with Vijaya Karnataka of The Times of India group, before they joined Rajeev Chandrasekhar‘s Kannada Prabha.

The national investigation agency (NIA), which investigated the case, didn’t name Siddiqui in its chargesheet on February 20 following which a special court trying the case ordered his release on February 23.

On Monday night, Siddiqui walked out of jail and on Tuesday, he addressed a press conference.

Reporting for the Indian Express, Johnson T.A. writes:

About six months ago, when he appeared in court for the first time after being named by the Bangalore Police, Siddiqui, 26, still had the glint of youthful exuberance in his eyes.

But now, the first thing that comes to mind on seeing Siddiqui after his release from prison on Monday, is the disappearance of that enthusiasm from his face. Gone is the glint in his eyes, and in its place is a serious, sad man.

Even so, Siddiqui, whose thesis suggestion for his PG diploma in mass communication—’Media coverage of terrorism suspects’—was struck down by his supervisor pulled no punches in describing his own ordeal before his colleagues, compatriots and competitors.

  1. “The media has forgotten the ‘A’ in the ABC of Journalism [Accuracy-Brevity-Clarity].”
  2. “I always thought the police, media and society at large do not treat terror suspects fairly. That thinking has been reinforced by my experience.”
  3. “Security agencies are not sensitive towards the poor and weaker sections of society. If you look at the way the entire operation was carried out by the police and reported by the media, this insensitivity is clear.”
  4. According to the [Bangalore] police and the media, I am the mastermind. If I am the mastermind, why are the others still in jail? I hope they too will get justice.”
  5. “The media and the police need to be more sensitive toward the downtrodden, Dalits and Muslims. The way the media and the police behaved raises basic questions about their attitude toward Muslims.
  6.   “Muslims are often cast by the media and police in stereotypes. There is an institutional bias which manifests in such cases. This is not just about me; it is about hundreds like me who are in jails [across the country] on terror charges. Muslims are not terrorists.”
  7. “If I was not a Muslim the police wouldn’t have picked me…. They first arrest people, then find evidence against them. What happened on August 29, 2012 was no arrest but downright kidnapping. A bunch of strong men barged into our house and forcefully took us away in their vehicles. This even as we were pleading and asking why we were being taken out.”
  8. “They kept interrogating me as if I was the mastermind and kept saying that I’d be in for seven years for sure. Everyone knows that jail is no fun place. For the first 30 days we were cramped in a small room. The confinement itself was torture.  They did not inform our families. They did not tell us what we were being arrested for. They made us sign 30-40 blank sheets of paper. One of these papers was used to create fake, back-dated arrest intimation.”
  9. “Some fair play is still possible in the system. Though justice was delayed, it wasn’t denied in my case.”

Siddiqui, who is still on Deccan Herald‘s roster, says he wants to go back to journalism, for that is his passion, but wants to spend time with his family first.

Two other journalists—Jigna Vora of The Asian Age and S.M.A. Kazmi—have been arrested in recent times on terror charges. They are both out on bail.

Also See: 

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POSTED BY Buzz ON Feb 27, 2013 AT 19:29 IST, Edited At: Feb 27, 2013 19:29 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Sep 05, 2012 AT 21:11 IST ,  Edited At: Sep 05, 2012 21:11 IST

A petition to Chief Justice of India asks him to remove Justice Bhaktavatsala of Karnataka High Court for his retrograde views against women against the tenets of the Constitution

From the petition:

On August 31, he went out of his way to counsel a young woman whose stated reason for not living with her husband was that he used to beat her. Justice Bhaktavatsala said, “Women suffer in all marriages. You are married with two children, and know what it means to suffer as a woman. Yesterday, there was a techie couple who reconciled for the sake of their child. Your husband is doing good business, he will take care of you. Why are you still talking about his beatings? I know you have undergone pain. But that is nothing in front of what you undergo as a woman. I have not undergone such pain. But madam (Justice BS Indrakala) has.”

The court asked the woman if her parents were present, at which her father walked up to the bench. The judge remarked, “Ask your father if he has never beaten your mother!” When the woman said her husband would beat her in the open, in front of everyone, Justice Bhaktavatsala remarked that it was she who was bringing it out in the open. The court was told that the husband would beat her in the middle of the night and had thrown her out of the house.

When the woman’s advocate produced photographs showing her swollen face, the court said, “You have to adjust. Are you just behind money? There is nothing in your case to argue on merits. You have to give him a divorce or go with him. Have you read about actor Darshan. He spent 30 days in jail after beating his wife. But they are living together now. What is on your mind and what is on your agenda?”

...

This is just not an isolated case in another case reported , a young advocate had not imagined she would be receiving a lesson on married life when she took up a case on behalf of an estranged wife. She was summarily told by Justice K Bhaktavatsala that she was unfit to argue a matrimonial case as she was unmarried. While the lady advocate was citing the allegations against the husband, Justice Bhaktavatsala stopped her midway and asked, “Are you married?” When she replied in the negative, the judge said, “You are unfit to argue this case. You do not know real life. Why are you arguing like this? He is your (client’s) partner,not a stranger. Family matters should be argued only by married people, not spinsters. You should only watch. Bachelors and spinsters watching family court proceedings will start thinking if there is any need to marry at all. Marriage is not like a public transport system. You better get married and you will get very good experince to argue such cases.”

Read the full petition

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FILED IN:  Judiciary|Women|Karnataka
POSTED BY Buzz ON Sep 05, 2012 AT 21:11 IST, Edited At: Sep 05, 2012 21:11 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 31, 2012 AT 20:53 IST ,  Edited At: Aug 31, 2012 20:53 IST


Muthiurrahman Siddiqui, courtesy: Facebook

Yesterday, Bangalore police arrested 11 persons, including a DRDO scientist and a journalist, with alleged links to Lashkar-e-Taiba and HUJI. and claimed to have foiled their plot to target MPs, MLAs and media persons in Karnataka.

Among the 11, the most shocking inclusion was a Bangalore-based journalist who has since been named by the police as the “mastermind” of the alleged plot:

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POSTED BY Buzz ON Aug 31, 2012 AT 20:53 IST, Edited At: Aug 31, 2012 20:53 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Feb 10, 2012 AT 23:40 IST ,  Edited At: Feb 10, 2012 23:40 IST
POSTED BY Buzz ON Feb 10, 2012 AT 23:40 IST, Edited At: Feb 10, 2012 23:40 IST
     
 
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