7
Sep

PodCast on MyndStories – Sepia Leaves

   Posted by: aman   in Sepia Leaves

Dear Friends,

I have shared this earlier but now the podcast has a permanent home. Hence placing it here. Thank you Ankit Narasimhan.

Please listen …

7
Sep

Interview in MyndStories

   Posted by: aman   in Other

Dear friends,

a few weeks back Nikhita Warriar from MyndStories interviewed me on Sepia Leaves and life in general. The interview is now published.

Please see …

7
Sep

Punjabi Jagran Editorial on PANJAB

   Posted by: aman   in Punjab

Dear Friends,

it does not often happen that a newspaper bases its editorial on a book. Last Sunday, Punjabi Jagran, did that. The paper talked about the use of pictures to construct the Preface of PANJAB Journeys Through Fault Lines.

Thank you Walia Sa’ab.

Please read …
22
Aug

PEN America – India @75

   Posted by: aman   in Other

Recently on India’s 75th Independence Day, PEN America invited some writers from India and the Indian Diaspora to send in short reflections on what independence means to us today. They recently published the pieces. I found each of us, though we wrote independently, together echoed the same sentiment – a sense of dread. This is a sort of lament but surely not all of us can be wrong.

My piece is here. Placing inline below.

Births are bloody. At the dawn of India and Pakistan’s birth as nations in 1947, the Urdu-language poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz said: “ye daag daag ujala, ye sab-gazida seher, wo intezaar tha jiska, ye wo seher to nahin”—”This stained tainted light, this night bitten dawn, that we were waiting for, this is not that dawn.” While the Indian mainland celebrated the nation’s birth, the poet looked at the birth pangs, the bleeding, the result of extreme identity politics, the laceration of Panjab and Bengal due to Partition. About 1 million people died, and 15 million were displaced in the largest, inadequately documented, migration in the history of the world. At birth India was a poor, populous nation. Over the decades, India progressed on various development indices but its mass was so large, its complexity so dense, that it also bumbled along the way. Discontent grew in society. In the last decade, the wounds of identity politics festered when India’s majority mostly abnegated their secular ethos in favor of a right-wing dispensation that has used every sectarian trope, even institutions of state, to attack the minorities and erode democracy. Those who support the powers in this new India now seemingly find direction, but it is a downward spiral on all indices and its economy. Faiz’s dawn has turned to noon, and I tremble, stating: now another darkness beckons.

This is the beginning. You may need to scroll to read other entries. Thanks.

12
Aug

PANJAB on Amazon

   Posted by: aman   in Other

I am making this page to keep a log of PANJAB Journeys Through Fault Lines on the Amazon(.)in site where it was hosted upon publication from Westland. The need is because Westland has shut down and the book is available for sale right now. When the book appears in a new avtar, it will have a new page.

Below are screenshots of book and reviews. Click image to view.

 

21
Jul

SKM Sample Press Note

   Posted by: aman   in Other, Punjab

Dear Friends,

A few days back I was writing an essay on media in Farmers Protest and was looking for links to showcase the Samyukth Kisan Morcha Press Notes which had served as an important tool to disseminate information. I could only find Facebook link which can be compromised by platform removing content, content owner changing persmissions. Hence here is a well formatted Press Note, mostly for reference.

Introduction: As discussed briefly yesterday, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha comprehensively rejects the Central Government Committee on Agriculture and refuses to send their members to the Committee. Here is their Press Note from yesterday.

Suggestion: Please read, if for nothing else, how to put together a solid response and call out the hoax.

Actual Press Note begins …
—–

Samyukta Kisan Morcha Press Release

19 July 2022

  • Samyukta Kisan Morcha rejects the committee formed by the Government on MSP and other issues; Morcha will appoint no representatives in the Committee.
  • There is no scope to discuss the MSP law in the agenda of this committee full of government representatives and its loyalists.
  • All the apprehensions of SKM about this committee turned out to be true; Morcha cannot have any association with such anti-farmer committee.

Samyukta Kisan Morcha has rejected the committee formed by the Government of India on MSP and other issues, and has decided not to nominate its representative in the committee. Morcha had made public its doubts about any such committee ever since it was announced by Prime Minister along with the repeal of the three black laws on 19 November. In the month of March, when the government had asked the Morcha for names for this committee, the Morcha had sought clarification from the government about the committee, to which it never got a reply. On July 3, the national meeting of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha unanimously decided that “unless the government clarifies the jurisdiction and terms of reference of this committee, there is no point to nominate a representative of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha to this committee”. All the doubts of Samyukta Kisan Morcha about this committee have come true with the notification issued by the Government. Obviously, there is no rationale for sending representatives of the Samyukta Kisan Morcha to such an anti-farmer and meaningless committee.

When the government had asked the Morcha for the names for this committee, in response to it, in an email sent to the Agriculture Secretary on 24 March 2022, the Morcha asked the government:

i) What will be the TOR (Terms of Reference) of this committee?

ii) Apart from Samyukta Kisan Morcha, which other organizations, individuals and office bearers will be included in this committee?

iii) Who will be the chairman of the committee and what will be its functioning?

iv) How much time will the committee get to submit its report?

v) Will the recommendation of the committee be binding on the government?

The Government did not respond to these questions. Yet the Agriculture Minister kept making statements that the formation of the committee was stalled due to non-receipt of the names of the representatives from the Samyukta Kisan Morcha.

By announcing this committee before the Parliament session, the government has tried to complete the paperwork. But the notification makes clear the ill-intentions of the government behind this committee and the irrelevance of the committee:

1. The chairman of the committee is former Agriculture Secretary Sanjay Agarwal, who drafted all three anti-farmer laws. He is accompanied by Ramesh Chand, a member of NITI Aayog, who was the main advocate of these three laws. As experts, it is the economists who have been against giving legal status to MSP.

2. Space has been left for 3 representatives of Samyukta Kisan Morcha in the committee. But in other places, in the name of farmer leaders, the government has placed its 5 loyalists who openly advocated all three anti-farmer laws. All these people are either directly associated with BJP-RSS or support their policy. Krishna Veer Choudhary is associated with the Indian Farmers’ Society and is a leader of the BJP. Syed Pasha Patel is a former BJP MLC from Maharashtra. Pramod Kumar Choudhary is a member of the National Executive of the RSS affiliated Bharatiya Kisan Sangh. Gunwant Patil, associated with the Shetkari organization, is a WTO advocate and General Secretary of the Swatantra Bharat Paksh Party. Guni Prakash has been a pioneer in opposing the farmers’ movement. These five people spoke openly in favor of all three anti-farmer laws and most of them have been spewing venom against the farmers’ movement.

3. There is no mention of making a law on MSP in the agenda of the committee. That is, this question will not be placed before the committee. Some items have been put in the agenda on which the government committee is already established. In the name of reforms in agricultural marketing, an item has been inserted through which the government can try to bring back three black laws.
In the light of these facts, there is no rationale for Samyukta Kisan Morcha to send its representatives to this committee. The struggle for the legal guarantee of MSP to ensure fair price for the crop to the farmers will continue.

Issued by-

Dr. Darshan Pal, Hannan Mollah, Joginder Singh Ugrahan, Yudhveer Singh, Yogendra Yadav

Samyukta Kisan Morcha

Email: samyuktkisanmorcha@gmail.com

Tags: , ,

19
Jul

Farmers Protest: An Acknowledgement by Amita Kanekar

   Posted by: aman   in Punjab

Today on Facebook Goan writer Amita Kanekar shared an article I had posted so I looked up our inbox and found this piece in which she had acknowledged me. At that time, in the hurry of the early days of the farmers protest, I had thanked her but not made a record of this article.

Doing that now.

Please see…

17
Jul

PANJAB: review in The Wire Hindi

   Posted by: aman   in Punjab

Dear Friends,

the beauty of us knowing more than one langauge is that our responses to situations, books, movies are not confined to one language. Many a times in the past Prof Adnan Farooqui has asked me to review books for ‘The Book Review’. Some of the times I have expressed time constraints and refused.

This time Prof Farooqui told me his mother Ms. Kanwaljeet Kaur, who tought at and now retired from central school, Dehradun wants to review my book PANJAB Journeys Through Fault Lines but in its Panjabi translation PANJAB Jinna Rahan Di Main Saar Na Jaana by Yadwinder Singh and Mangat Ram.

I was looking forward to an email but here comes a full-fledged review, that too in Hindi. I love the way Ms Kaur has zeroed down to the critical point of every chapter of the book. Thank you Ms Kaur and The Wire Hindi.

Please read …

11
Jul

Model Patients

   Posted by: aman   in Punjab

Model Patients

When Prof Aman Caur came to Bangalore late June, Yasmeen, our younger cat, was already not well. Aman came because a Doctor in Bangalore had called her over for three weeks, for check-up, investigation and treatment for her nine-month old, sometimes debilitating, sometimes niggling, but constant back pain; Yasmeen had stopped eating and was running high fever.

When the Doctor met Aman, saw her reports, which she had plenty – X-ray, MRI, conclusions by seven doctors in Amritsar – the Bangalore Doctor’s conclusion was stark: there is no issue. We had taken Yasmeen for check-up, got her injections, medicines, Gastrointestinal food, and she recovered a bit, but then went back to not eating.

After the Doctor who had called Aman to Bangalore, we met another Orthopaedic, elder, much more experience. He too said no issues. After a round of two nearby hospitals, we took Yasmeen to her first Doctor Prabhu who had literally saved her when she was 4 weeks old. We got another blood report, an X-Ray, even a Scan done. Nothing came up – zero issue, cipher except some perhaps hard stool lodged in her larger intestine. But she refused food.

After Aman’s tickets to Bangalore were booked, she had had an accident in Amritsar. On a service road, with clearly one-side traffic allowed, to save someone coming from the opposite side, her scooter skid, she fell, broke her elbow and her ankle. Her cast came off three days before coming to Bangalore. Now Aman’s back issues remain undiagnosed, Yasmeen food intake was stalled. Basically, medical science, its modes of investigation, its line of diagnoses, could not find the reason Aman and Yasmeen were in trouble. Hence, they declared there are no issues. But there were issues – Aman had pain, Yasmeen refused food.

For Aman, there was one thing left to do: physiotherapy. Any travel plans from Bangalore were ruled out because of her joints that had not fully healed. For Yasmeen too, there was one thing left to do: stay indoors, follow the regimen, and we wait for her to poop. Out of Aman’s 21 days, she did intense physiotherapy for 18 days. Throughout her ailment, Yasmeen followed her GI food and medicine regimen. In the nights Yasmeen would snuggle up to Aman. Aman would spend hours caressing her.

Each evening, after Aman came from physiotherapy sessions, I would see her body literally trembling from the pain of the exercises, her face pumped up with blood, yet her tone even while responding to ‘how was the session?’, I was filled with awe and respect. Seeing Yasmeen, locked at home, co-opertate in hand-feeding (using a 10 ml syringe) food 5 times a day, taking her treatment without flinching, I was filled with love and gratefulness. Yasmeen’s Dr Prabhu was always at hand over WhatsApp for consultation.

Cut to three weeks later, Aman’s hands and legs have eased up. In fact, her back pain was also low and some days not at all. Yasmeen has been passing motion. Earlier once in two days, now everyday. She is back to eating solids: dry and wet food, some GI, boiled shredded chicken, her medicines have reduced and will end likely this week.

Both Aman and Yasmeen had issues, severe issues. For each’s issues we had no root cause identified. Yet, both dealt with the issues and whatever treatment was available with equanimity. It was simply their attitude, their will to go beyond where their bodies were at those points.

They were indeed model patients!

Aman left this morning. Before leaving, she opened the door for Yasmeen to re-enter the outer world. Aman reached airport, had to shift some books from check-in luggage to hand luggage. I hope her back can take it. Yasmeen will go to sleep on neighbour’s car and tease the Rottweiler in another neighbour’s house.

In health and sickness, life goes on … I learnt, it does not help to deny an issue. What we need is the attitude to face up to it and work on lines that may help, but stay consistent.

Respect, Huge Respect!

7
Jul

Mattewara: Post picked by Worker’s Unity

   Posted by: aman   in Punjab

Dear Friends,

the media channel picked this post on Mattewara forest and Panjab’s AAP government’s intention to push with a Industrial Park next to it polluting the River Satluj flood-plains.

Please see …