Not for hard-core nationalists

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Prospect Magazine: Issue 154, January 2009

Mumbai’s bloodied elite
The Mumbai attacks hit India’s rich the hardest. They may now take democracy more seriously

Elegant apartment blocks stand tall above the gardens of Malabar Hill, the most exclusive district in south Mumbai. The area juts out on the far side of a bay, like the thumb of a hand stretching for the sea, as if trying to keep at arm’s length from the body behind. Property prices here rival downtown Manhattan. When the smog isn’t too thick, residents can gaze east across Back Bay, to see the city’s seething downtown fingertip. Few places would have given a better view of the smoke rising from…
You can see the entire article here


Hindu Asylum Seeker

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Via Shrimpy’s blog at chingrimaach comes a link to a story about Kunal, a boy of Indian parentage who is driven to excel in spelling bee competitions. His parents were refused political asylum in the USA and had to return to India- Bihar, it seems. While the story in the NY times that Shrimpy links to is about the problems he faces and his anger at having to live without his parents, I found this bit about his father very interesting:

Mr. Sah, who was born in India, came to the United States in 1990 and shortly before his entry visa expired the next year he applied for political asylum, saying that if he was forced to return to his home province in southeastern India he would be targeted by Muslims because of his involvement in a group called Vishwa Hindu Parishad, which he described as committed to Hindu nationalism.

Mr. Sah acknowledged in his application that he had been active in organizing a campaign against Babri Mosque, in northern India, because it was “built on our sacred land” and that he “actively participated” in riots intended to demolish it.

In 1992, after Mr. Sah had immigrated to the United States, Hindu extremists destroyed the mosque.

In denying him haven, immigration officials noted that Mr. Sah “had participated in the persecution of non-Hindus and thus was ineligible for asylum.”

Surely, Mr. Sah can move to Gujarat where the government (and people) seem to be quite favourably disposed to Hindu nationalists? Instead of facing persecution he may well be treated as a hero!