Archive for the ‘kerala’ Category

Is Sabarimala for  the devotees or for dirty women like Rehana Fathima Pyarijaan Sulaiman and journo trekkers, atheists etc? [2]  

October 24, 2018

Is Sabarimala for  the devotees or for dirty women like Rehana Fathima Pyarijaan Sulaiman and journo trekkers, atheists etc? [2]

 

Who were these two tried to enter Sabarimala-1

Suhashini Raj with an American walked briskly towards the route to temple

Suhashini Raj with an American walked briskly towards the route to temple………

Who were these two tried to enter Sabarimala-2

Two persons intervened and asked, but, she showed some document told that they were tourists and proceeded…..

Who were these two tried to enter Sabarimala-3

However, when they were found on the hill-path, the devotees asked them and police also surrounded and asked them to leave….

Suhashini Raj, not a devotee, but, a journo: In the case of Suhashini Raj, NDTV reported[1], “On Day 2 [18-10-2018, Thursday] of the Sabarimala temple opening, Suhasini Raj, a Delhi-based New York Times reporter who said she was not a devotee, began to trek uphill who got past Pamba base camp had to abort just before the lag leg of the trek to the shrine after protesters formed a human wall before her. According to the reporter[2], “the protesters had thrown stones, forcing the two journalists to return” but, it was false and the NDTV has no along with her colleague”, adding, “Suhasini Raj, who is a Delhi-based journalist, along with her colleague, a foreign national, managed to go past the Pamba gateway but was stopped midway by angry Sabarimala devotees”. Here, NDTV suppressed the fact that her college isa foreigner. The two journalists guts to tell the truth that she went there by telling lies. In fact, one person has videographed her trek that exposes her intent. Since the Sabarimala temple opening, at least 12 women have attempted the 20-km trek to the hilltop shrine starting at the Nilakkal base camp, but none of these women were successful.

Rehna Fatima, nude

Rehana Fathima Pyarijaan Sulaiman[3]: Rehana was brought up in an orthodox Muslim family and attended a madarassa[4]. “I used to wear the hijab and do namaz five times a day,” she says. Things changed after her father died when she was in Class 12[5]. She is known for her angst over a male professor’s comments on the students’ breasts[6]. The professor compared them to watermelons and further advised girls to cover themselves since they attract men.  In protest to this, Rehana Fathima, a 31-year-old BSNL government employee, she posed nude with watermelons[7]. The model and activist from Kochi received massive backlash for the same[8]. However, she explained that this was needed because she wanted “to question the restrictions regarding a woman baring her body”, as per a report in The Times of India. She was also a part of several other movements of dissent. Fathima was the first woman to participate in the traditional Onam tiger dance in 2016, Thrissur Pulikali, that is traditionally done by all-male troupes. She has also been a part of the Kiss of Love campaign against moral policing in 2014, as per TOI. Fathima had earlier posted a picture of her wearing the ‘mala’ on Facebook with a single word caption: “Philosophy”. After Fathima tried to enter the Sabarimala temple today, her house in Kochi was vandalised soon after but two unidentified people. Rehana now lives with her filmmaker partner Manoj, their two daughters and his parents. Manoj has produced the art film, and her debut movie, Eka about intersex people.

Can these equal to Iyappa baktas

Kavitha Jakkal – online journo[9]: Kavitha Jakkal, a reporter from Hyderabad working with Mojo TV Telugu as a nes-presenter-cum-reporter, was one who was accompanying Fathima as the police escorted them to the gates of Lord Ayyappa’s shrine. She also wore a bulletproof jacket as they walked from Pamba to Sannidhanam. She had earlier said that she won’t return before the darshan. However, the two women were forced to return afterward as their security was threatened by an agitating crowd of devotees.  The CEO of Mojo TV, Revathi Pogadadanda, took to Twitter soon after the incident and said that her team of journalists including Kavitha, Balakrishna and Narasing were going on an indefinite hunger strike.  “They r fighting for their right. They are fighting for what the #SupremeCourt said. Don’t take this country back to medieval ages! Let the law live,” she wrote[10]. In a statement to the media, Kavitha said[11]: “I am a journalist, doing my duty. By religion, I am a Hindu. I am here to cover the implementation of the Supreme Court judgment. I have been arrested and forcibly taken to the airport. I can see the SC judgment was not implemented due to pressure. I condemn the way I was restricted. A journalist not being able to discharge her duty is nothing, but a weakness of the system. I thank the Kerala government and police for giving immense support to us. We could not complete the journey since anti-social elements have put children and the elderly in the line of fire. Given a chance, I will return to Sabarimala to offer prayers and I will come back to do my duty too.” In Hyderabad, several rightwing activists stormed the MOJO TV office in Banjara Hills and raised slogans against Kavitha[12].

Kavitha Jakkal, TV-journalist

Mary Sweety- Catholic woman [13]: Another woman, Mary Sweety, tried to enter the temple but was forced to return soon after. Mary Sweety told reporters that “her body was full of divine power motivating her to climb”, as per a report in The News Minute. A 46-year-old woman from Kerala’s Kazhakkottam, she said she wanted to witness the deity at least once. However, she had to return midway after she was stopped by a group of protesting devotees.  “I don’t know about them (journalist Kavitha Jakkal & woman activist Rehana Fatima). If women have returned, it is your drawback. I want to go there,” she said[14]. Kavitha Jakkal and Rehana Fathima were just metres away from the entry of the temple before they were stopped by protesting devotees and priests. Devotees outside Lord Ayyappa’s shrine have blocked the entry gates while the head priest Kandarau Rajeevaru has decided to lock the temple and hand over the keys in view of the protests.

Mary Sweety, Catholic activist

The dubious women were given protection, but, the devotees made to suffer: On Friday [10-10-2018], three women – an online journo Kavitha Jakkal from Hyderabad, activist Rehana Fathima from Kochi and Mary Sweety from Thiruvananthapuram – reached Pamba to trek to Sannidhanam. Though a special police team led by Inspector General S Sreejith escorted both Rehana Fathima and Kavitha to Sannidhanam, the women were asked to return to Pamba after a group of devotees blocked their entry at Nadapandhal at Sannidhanam chanting Swami Saranam. When Mary Sweety reached Pamba and decided to trek to Sannidhanam, police dissuaded her explaining about the volatile situation and safely escorted her back to Pathanamthitta. It was intriguing to note that how these media women with such shady back ground were given uniform, protection etc., when the devotees were disturbed. Moreover, how the two women followed the “Mandala vratam,” who initiated etc. were also not known. Therefore, how ridiculous it was that they police to accompany them! Indian Express went on to argue, “While the state police are legally bound to give protection to women coming to Sabarimala for darshan following the Supreme Court verdict, they are now giving top priority to the law and order situation at Sabarimala.

The Three- mohammedan and christians created problem witth police

Police to verify the background of the women, who want to enter the temple[15]: With Devaswom Minister Kadakkampilly Surendran on Friday [10-10-2018] making it clear that no forceful action will be taken to evict the protesting devotees at Sannidhanam, things have become much clear that the police won’t use force on the devotees blocking the entry of women to Sabarimala”. But the fact is, the police not  only lathi-charged, but also damaged many vehicles marked by the side. The Minister also made it affirmative that they won’t allow anyone to make use of the situation to hurt the sentiments of the devotees and convert Sabarimala into a war zone. He was referring to Rehana Fathima, a known activist, who made an attempt to enter Sabarimala. Senior police officers said they have been directed to verify the background of the women devotees who are reaching Pamba to proceed to Sannidhanam during this volatile situation. “Intelligence wing will be tracking the developments as there will be people with vested interests to make use of this vulnerable situation and flare up things for communal violence,” a top police officer said[16]. So why it was done for the three or four women is intriguing.

© Vedaprakash

23-10-2018

Jpornalists tried to enter - Jakkal and Rehana

[1] NDTV, NY Times Journalists On Sabarimala Trek Return Amid Protests, Edited by Richa Taneja (with inputs from Agencies) | Updated: October 18, 2018 21:10 IST

[2] https://www.ndtv.com/kerala-news/new-york-times-reporter-suhasini-raj-treks-to-sabarimala-protesters-stop-her-mid-way-1933776

[3] Times Now News, Sabarimala: Who are Rehana Fathima, Kavitha Jakkal, Mary Sweety, the 3 women who tried to enter Kerala shrine?, Updated Oct 19, 2018 | 15:36 IST | Times Now Digital

[4] Times of India, Meet Kerala’s topless feminist, Sudha Nambudiri and Afrah Ali| TNN | Updated: Mar 25, 2018, 12:04 IST.

[5] https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/sunday-times/meet-keralas-topless-feminist/articleshow/63445940.cms

[6] Hindustan Times, Sabarimala row: The women who kept Kerala cops on tenterhooks for hours, Updated: Oct 19, 2018 15:50 IST

[7] https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/sabarimala-row-the-women-who-kept-kerala-cops-on-tenterhooks-for-hours/story-dQ9CWvchLR7dHvzoAUuAeJ.html

[8] https://www.timesnownews.com/india/article/sabrimala-temple-rehana-fathima-kavitha-jakkal-mary-sweety-the-3-women-metres-lord-ayyappa-shrine-today-protest-police-sabarimala-news-rahana-rahna/301526

[9] Times Now News, Sabarimala: Who are Rehana Fathima, Kavitha Jakkal, Mary Sweety, the 3 women who tried to enter Kerala shrine?, Updated Oct 19, 2018 | 15:36 IST | Times Now Digital

[10] https://www.timesnownews.com/india/article/sabrimala-temple-rehana-fathima-kavitha-jakkal-mary-sweety-the-3-women-metres-lord-ayyappa-shrine-today-protest-police-sabarimala-news-rahana-rahna/301526

[11] Times of India, They used children, elderly to stop me at Sabarimala: Journo Kavitha, U Sudhakar Reddy| TNN | Oct 20, 2018, 07:06 IST.

[12] https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/they-used-children-elderly-to-stop-me-at-sabarimala-journo-kavitha/articleshow/66289624.cms

 

[13] Times Now News, Sabarimala: Who are Rehana Fathima, Kavitha Jakkal, Mary Sweety, the 3 women who tried to enter Kerala shrine?, Updated Oct 19, 2018 | 15:36 IST | Times Now Digital

[14] https://www.timesnownews.com/india/article/sabrimala-temple-rehana-fathima-kavitha-jakkal-mary-sweety-the-3-women-metres-lord-ayyappa-shrine-today-protest-police-sabarimala-news-rahana-rahna/301526

[15] Indian Express, Police in Catch-22 situation; to check background of women arriving at Sabarimala, Published: 19th October 2018 07:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 19th October 2018 07:49 PM.

[16] http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/kerala/2018/oct/19/police-in-catch-22-situation-to-check-background-of-women-arriving-at-sabarimala-1887366.html

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International Conferences on Mahabharat held at Tirupati and Vedic Workshop at Kozikode – contrasted in the Indian context – 2014

January 13, 2014

International Conferences on Mahabharat held at Tirupati and Vedic Workshop at Kozikode – contrasted in the Indian context – 2014

The sixth international Vedic workshop

The sixth international Vedic workshop

International Conferences on Mahabharat held at Tirupati and Vedic Workshop at Kozikode: The sixth international Vedic workshop [hereinafter mentioned as SIVW for brevity] was held in Kozhiokode from January 7 to 10 2014 and the international conference on Mahabharata [mentioned as ICMB] in Tirupati from 7th to 11th 2014. As the former had attracted Sanskrit and Veda researchers and writers from universities across the world[1] with 111 delegates, the latter attracted more than 600 registered delegates with paper presentation. Besides theoretical deliberations, Veda chanting had been a special feature of the workshop, event coordinator Vinod Bhattathiripad and programme core committee members M.G.S. Narayanan, former chairman Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR), and P. Bhaskaran Nayar of Lincoln University, U.K., said at a press conference in Kozhikode on Saturday (04-01-2014). The workshop began with chanting of Rigveda by Parvathy, who the organisers said, was the only female Rigveda chanter in Kerala. However, there have been many Hindu women chanting Vedic mantras living in India even today. But, an impression has been created that women should not read or are not allowed to read Vedas. The ICMB was inaugurated with the presence and blessings of the following:

  1. Sri Jayendra Saraswathi, pontiff of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam,
  2. S.A.R.P.V. Chaturvedi, founder of Sri Ramanuja Mission Trust and
  3. Kandukuri Sivananda Murty, Saiva mutt.

The first three postings of the conference have been posted under captions as follows and their internet links are given in the footnotes:

  1. The proceedings of the international conference on Mahabharatam held at Tirupati from 7th to 11th January 2014[2].
  2. The International conference on Mahabharatam held at Tirupati from 7th to 11th January 2014 – the proceedings (2)[3].
  3. The Mahabharatam conference concluded at Tirupati on 11th January 2014 that started on 7th – the proceedings (3)[4].
The sixth international Vedic workshop -Gateway Hotel

The sixth international Vedic workshop -Gateway Hotel

The Gateway Hotel and Vishnu Nivasam: While the delegates of SIVW stayed at the five star hotel, the delegates of ICMB were accommodated at the Vishnu Nilayam comfortably. The registration / delegate fees was Rs. 6,000/- for SIVW (four days)[5] and Rs. 1,500/- for ICMB (five days). SIVW was the first international Vedic workshop to be hosted by India, as claimed by the organizers, but Indians wonder as to why such claim should have been made, as if India hosts now. The other Vedic workshops were held at[6]

  1. Harvard University, USA (in 1989, organized by Prof. Michael Witzel),
  2. Kyoto University, Japan (in 1999, organized by Prof. Y. Ikari),
  3. Leiden University, The Netherlands (in 2002, organized by Prof. J. Houben and Prof. A. Griffith),
  4. University of Texas, Austin, USA (in 2007, organized by Prof. P. Olivelle and Prof. J. Brereton), and
  5. Centre for Eurasiatic and Afroasiatic Studies (CEAS), Bucharest, Romania (in 2011, organized by Prof. J. Rotaru).

The ICMB was organized by the Oriental Research Institute (ORI) of Sri Venkateswara University and Tirupati Tirumala Devasthanams (TTD). The Vedic workshop in Kozhikode reportedly focused on Vedic texts and rituals, scholarly interpretations of Vedic texts, Vedic traditions of Kerala, and the recent resurgence of interest in the Vedas in the West. While 14 scholars from universities and research institutes in the U.S. and 12 from Japan had confirmed participation, five Vedic experts were expected from France and four each from Germany and the United Kingdom[7], thus the press went on reporting. On the other hand, ICMB provided space to students, research scholars, Vedic experts, researchers and Indologists.

Wooden utensils used in Vedic rituals

Wooden utensils used in Vedic rituals

The details given by the SIVW website: The workshop committee members comprised the following:

  1. Prof. M. Witzel (University of Harvard, USA)
  2. Prof. Shrikant Bahulkar, Pune, India
  3. Prof. Yasuke Ikari, Kyoto University, Japan
  4. Prof. Julita Rotaru, Centre for Eurasiatic and Afroasiatic Studies (CEAS), Bucharest, Romania

The core committee members were as follows:

  1. Dr. P. Bhaskaran Nayar, Lincoln University, UK
  2. Prof. M. G. S. Narayanan, Former Chairman, Indian Council of Historical Research
  3. Prof. C. M. Neelakantan, Former Professor (Veda), Sree Sankaracharya  University of Sanskrit, Kerala, India
  4. Prof. C. Rajendran, Professor (Sanskrit), University of Calicut, Kerala, India
  5. Dr. P. Vinod Bhattathiripad, Chief Co-ordinator, www.namboothiri.com

Advisors to the core committee were –

  1. Prof. Cezary Galewicz, Professor, University of Krakow, Poland
  2. Prof. T. P. Mahadevan, Professor, Howard University, USA

It appears that these committees are just like any other conference to control the proceedings, as I have been noting for more than 40 years after attending many national and international conferences. The program details of SIVW are available here[8].

Kozhiokode and Tirupati: To quote Elst, “Kozhikode (Calicut), Kerala, India. This is the town where Vasco da Gama first landed in 1498, thus starting the colonial entreprise in Asia”, whereas Tirupati has been a place of pilgrimage centre where all categories of Indians used to come for darshan of Sri Venkateswara. Of course, the Portuguese colonialists tried to loot this temple also as per the recordings of othe non-Indian sources. The University of Calicut, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi, and IIT Kanpur sponsored their scholars to the conference. Delegates from the University of Michigan also attended. The    Chief coordinator of the conference Dr Vinod Bhattathiripad told Deccan Chonicle that 15 delegates from various universities in the country would present papers. Only 80 papers were accepted by the committee[9], implying that papers were also rejected, but the grounds not known. The major universities sent the delegates at their own expenses reducing the financial burden of the organizers, he said. But, in a poor country like India, when the organizers had already decided to host “Vedic workshop” in five star hotels, how the question of “financial burden” plays a role is intriguing. The organizers decided to conduct the workshop in the country of Vedas where the spirit is still alive to provide an ‘on ground’ experience of Vedic practice and direct interaction with practicing scholars, he added.  In Tirupati, more than 600 papers were presented accommodating students, research scholars, Vedic experts, researchers and Indologists.

Indians do not know Michael Witzel but Veda Vyasa: The views of Koenald Elst, one of the delegates can be read here[10]. His comments are interesting[11] for Indians in contrast to what other non-Indians who write about Indian issues. His pointed out that “……….Michael Witzel, Wales professor of Sanskrit at Harvard. For quite some time now I have taken my distance from the counterproductive Hindu habit of treating him as a hate figure”. Good, but 99% of the Hindus do not know about Koenald / Koenraad Elst or Michael Wizel and therefore, it is surprising to know about “Hindu habit of treating him as hate figure”. As I was attending the International conference on Mahabharatam at Tirupati, I could not attend, but I was mentioning about him with many Sanskrit Pundits, scholars and professors from the Universities of Baroda, Pune, Calcutta, Tiruvanathapuram, Andhra, Madras, Pondicherry etc. Of 100, only few – two   from Chennai, one from AP and another from Pondicherry know him. Ironically none of the Sanskrit Pundits, scholars and professors responded that they do not know him even after showing his photograph!

OIT, AIT and Indians: As OIT and AIT were dominating the SIVW, they were also haunting and daunting sizeable modern students and researchers of ICMB. However, ICMB  papers have been affected ideologically with political influence and compulsion, though in person they do not agree with such Aryan-Dravidian dichotomy. As now the knowledge is open and accessible to all through modern gadgetry, and they could come to their own conclusions, no lecturing, tutoring or propaganda affects them. In that way, it appears the scholars, experts and Pundits of SIVW have been still under the clutches of OIT and AIT controlling their thought processes.

(To be concluded


[1] The special correspondent, Scholars to attend Vedic workshop, The Hindu dated January 5, 2014, Kozhikode edition