New Delhi: In solidarity with the retired civil servants who wrote a
letter last week to Prime Minister Narendra Modi holding him responsible
for the  “terrible state of affairs” in Kathua and Unnao, over 600
academics from India and abroad,  including Noam Chomsky and Lila
Abu-Lughod have also written an open letter to the prime minister
expressing their “deep anger and anguish” over these “monstrous crimes”
and the effort by the state governments concerned to protect the alleged

“There is little evidence, in government action, of an appreciation
of the importance of providing assistance to vulnerable sections of the
society – whether through promotional measures aimed at enabling tribals
and nomads to have access to forest and common property rights, or
through preventive measures aimed at discouraging blatant breaches of
the rule of law,” says the letter.

Seeing ‘Pattern’ of Inaction, Over 600 Scholars Write to PM on Kathua, Unnao Rapes – The Wire


… even though the marginalised groups can access education as it is constitutionally mandated, exclusion manifests in dubious ways. The principle of merit is largely undefined. However, the social and economic worth of individuals and institutions is valued on the basis of this amorphous principle. Any standard definition of merit will again feed the myth of the “family farm” comprising parental background, alma mater, economic occupations, physicality and geographical location. Needless to say, these privileges are available only to a chosen few who are then considered as “meritorious”, “worthy” and the “best”.

In an ongoing study sponsored by the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) on ‘Discrimination and Exclusion in Institutions of Higher Learning in India’, SC/ST students of four universities — Delhi, Mumbai, Madras and Hyderabad — were mapped. A total of 72 respondents were interviewed on various parameters. More than 70 percent of them felt stigmatised by their caste identity within the classrooms, peer group and the academic environment. Unsurprisingly, Rohith wrote in his suicide note, “My birth is my fatal accident.”

Universities as Modern Agraharas*


… how can India claim her making, when she was a dreamer—dare we say it—despite India, not because of it? What did India give Jyoti Singh? Not a society that respected her. Not an education for which her family didn’t have to sacrifice every little thing. Not even a safe bus to take home.

The rapists—Mukesh Singh who recounts his crime and talks to the camera without showing the slightest regret (nor a full understanding of the inconceivable gravity of his actions) and his criminal companions—aren’t they, perhaps, India’s real sons? “What kind of human beings are these?” asks former chief of justice Leila Seth in the film. They are, let’s repeat it, India’s sons. The product of poor education, of centuries of patriarchy, and of violence, poverty and impunity.

No, Jyoti Singh is not India’s daughter – Quartz

Need, Help | Pranay Sharma

See on Scoop.itRights & Liberties

Its envoy’s humiliation outrages India, but there are issues it needs to look at
dMaculate’s insight:

Wearing their often misplaced pride on their sleeves, Indians remain ever so sensitive about the “Indian image,” and ever so willfully oblivious to the ugly aspects of their reality that keeps seeping into said image.

See on


The United States has greatly annoyed India after arresting and strip-searching its deputy consul general in New York, Devyani Khobragade, for allegedly submitting fraudulent visa papers for her children’s Indian nanny. In response, the Indian government stripped the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi of its protective traffic barricades, amongst other protesting measures.