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


Does Salman Khan represent Muslims of India?

Salman Khan’s dance performance in Saifai Mahostsav (organised by the Uttar Pradesh government) and his subsequent meetings with Narendra Modi for the promotion of his recent film have been severely condemned. Khan was called ‘insensitive’ because he participated in a state sponsored function in UP ignoring the plight of the riot victims of Muzzafarnagar; he was also called ‘irresponsible’ because he described Narendra Modi ‘a good man’. These criticisms grew gradually and turned into another heated discussion on ‘communalism/secularism’.

"Fixed Plurality" and institutional geometry of Indian secularism

NDTV organised an interesting debate ‘Preserving Pluralism in India Today’ on 19 January 2014 in which Bhiku Parekh, Arun Shourie and Mushirul Hasan participated. The discussion, as expected, revolves around the meanings of secularism and its relationship with the diversity of Indian social life in postcolonial India.  

On 'Difference': Delhi

I have been watching, with an increasing sense of anger, disbelief, and dismay at the unfolding story of the recent violence against Africans living in Khirki, an urban village in Saket, in Delhi.

One Dark Night and Freedom

In 1990 I had finished high school and joined the University of the Western Cape, enrolled for a BA degree. Some specifics are important as background. As many of you know the 1980’s were turbulent years in South Africa.  And for much of the period between 1985 to 1989 we lived under a state of Emergency. I had been active in the student’s movement, and students across the country were highly organised in parts of the popular revolt.

Exploring Muslim Representation

The contemporary Muslim political discourse in India seems to revolve around the question of political underrepresentation of Muslims. There is a strong legal-constitutional argument, which recognises the Indian Muslim community as an identifiable religious minority and envisages its appropriate representation in legislative bodies so as to ensure the effective implementation of the minority rights.

Travels in Time - Praha

Praha. A name. An idea. A vision in blue, grey and orange. Cities as we all know are spaces we inhabit, physically, but often, far more, in our minds. I had never been to Praha before the last week of December 2013, but had wanted to from as long as I can remember. The reasons were many, and as with these things, predictably varied. Growing up in a journalist- academic ‘communist’ family, contact with the erstwhile socialist countries was not unusual. The exposure, however, was often interesting, and now when I look back, unexpected.


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