ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles by A G NooraniSubscribe to A G Noorani

The Detentions of Lone and Geelani

The Detentions of Lone and Geelani THE government of India has behaved in a disgraceful manner in regard to the imprisonment without trial, called preventive detention, of the veteran leaders of Kashmir, Abdul Ghani Lone and Syed Ali Shah Geelani. The orders were made by the state government, in gross disregard of the state's Constitution and the Constitution of India, but the state is under president's rule. They are both leading lights of the Hurriyat Conference.

An Indian Intellectual s Anguish

An Indian Intellectual's Anguish A G Noorani Bewildered India: Identity, Pluralism, Discord by Rasheeduddin Khan; Har-Anand Publications; Rs 350, THIS book expresses not so much the bewilderment as an anguish of an Indian intellectual. Like many in the country, he seems to cry: 'This is not the India we once knew; still less the India we dreamt of. Rasheeduddin Khan writes; "Frankly I am passing through a mood of despondency, despair, anguish and anger, by witnessing the erosion of values in social and political life, the steady deterioration in practically every aspect of collective existence, and our incapacity or unwillingness to resist it.

Is It Constitutional to Ban Demand for Plebiscite in Kashmir

Is It Constitutional to Ban Demand for Plebiscite in Kashmir? A G Noorani Is it constitutionally valid to deny or restrict a citizen's fundamental right to freedom of expression by a law which forbids and penalises a demand for plebiscite in or independence of Kashmir?

Concerns of Asia Watch

(and recently-developed) countries have made it the business of the state to take care of primary education (the level varying from country to country). The Constitution of India also lays down that the government would attain complete literacy within 10 years. Well, that objective is far from being achieved; but what is happening is that (a) the states are being encouraged to borrow externally to fund primary education, and (b) one of the conditions for such funding is that higher education would be privatised. The privatisation of not only education but also health and medical care is the latest craze under the Thatcher-Reagan programme.

Indo-Pak Pact on Amnesty

Indo-Pak Pact on Amnesty? A G Noorani Will the governments of India and Pakistan open a joint front against Amnesty International and Asia Watch in 1994? Even if they do not, why not an Indo-Pak arrangement between human rights organisations in the two countries for exchange of information, literature and insights?

Censoring Kashmir

Censoring Kashmir A G Noorani By referring an item on Kashmir in the December issue of Eyewitness, the video news-magazine, to the home ministry for clearance, the Board of Film Censors has pronounced its own unfitness for performing the task assigned to it KASHMIR brings out the worst in the Indian political system. Mention the name and hackles rise to devise varied forms of repression. This is not to deny that it also evoked an entirely different reaction from persons like Jayaprakash Narayan and Mridula Sarabhai. They were committed to the people of Kashmir. Very many in our country are concerned with the land alone. They care not a bit for the people of Kashmir.

Freedom and Television

Freedom and Television A G Noorani During the Hazratbal crisis, the Bombay police directed cable operators not to receive and communicate Pakistan TV's transmissions on the ground that they were likely to create communal ill will. This was both absurd and unconstitutional IT is by now woefully apparent that from the government of India downwards the concept of freedom of speech and expression is little understood by Indian authorities and even less so is its relevance and application to the right to receive and impart information through television.

Anmesty and India-Baiters

Anmesty and India-Baiters A G Noorani There are politicians, like Jesse Helms in the US, to whom the label of 'India-baiters' can be fittingly applied But to Apply it to Amnesty International and Asia Watch is a deliberate falsehood. Their reports, which do not spare western governments, are telling precisely because of their careful documentation and their objectivity.

Teaching Human Rights to Police

The chief of army staff has taken the initial step by deciding to set up a special human rights cell at the Army Headquarters in New Delhi, but training in human rights is all the more necessary for the men of the notorious BSF and the CRPF and the local police in all the states.

Censoring Behind the Barricade

Censoring Behind the Barricade A G Noorani A singularly unfortunate feature of the censorship process is that the order by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal, while by no means a secret document is not publicised A reading of the Tribunal's order in the case of the documentary Behind the Barricade reveals the illiberal framework within which the Tribunal and film censors work.

Report on Prisons

Report on Prisons A G Noorani The Global Report on Prisons of the Human Rights Watch organisation, which contains a section on India, is a very valuable work of reference for social workers and civil libertarians interested in conditions in our prisons and their improvement to accord with human rights.

India-China Pact on Human Rights

into hibernation. The NAM was originally set up as a bargaining counter. It was a remarkable beauty; it enabled us to develop the panache to play one superpower against another. Now that there is only one superpower left, the occupation of bargaining is gone. No virtue is to be squeezed out of non-alignment; NAM has thus been rendered a non-combatant. Our contacts have loosened; it is no longer possible to buttonhole Arab friends at all times of the day. Desperate situations call for desperate remedies. Besides, were not our wise men of yore wont to advise: always maintain a cool head on your torso? On account of the ghastly occurrence on December 6 last and subsequent events, we are, as of this moment, without too many friends in the Arab world. We accept that reality. But precisely because we have few friends left amongst the Arabs consequent to the doings of the Viswa Hindu Parishad, we decide to go the whole hog and embrace the foreign policy of the VHP: we go all out to woo Israel. That is to say, we decide, for a change, to return to the cool waters of ancient history. Or if it pleases you, our stance is akin to following the precept underlying a song once much in favour in American playpens: 'Lost my partner, what shall I do; I'II get another one prettier than you! The Israelis are for the present to be preferred to the beastly Arabs, who are threatening not to sell us oil. True, this revisionism would not solve the problem of shortage of petroleum crude, more so since we abhor the stick-in-the-mud ideology of self-reliance and will not, as a matter of principle, raise our domestic output of crude. But there are compensations. The Israelis have apparently promised to lend us one or two Mossad contingents who will help us catch that beast Velupillai Pirbhakaran. On the other hand, Israelis have a long memory, perhaps because they have a long history. Their foreign minister quoted from both Jawaharlal Nehru and Ved Mehta. So far so good. When it was after hours though, he called on Lai Krishna Advani, whose party had been ever since antiquity against the Arabs and for befriending Israel. We, meaning our leaders, are once more caught in the contradictions of hypotheses. The Arabs hate us, we therefore learn to hate the Arabs, and cross over to the Israelis. The latter however go calling on the Bharatiya Janata Party. A matter of some solace, the Israelis have declared their abhorrence of terrorism and fundamentalism and endorsed all the way our stand on Kashmir; but you never know, they may go even further and endorse the RIP proposition on Article 370 too.

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