Energy Costs Driving Up Wholesale Inflation, Rupee Falls; What The Modi Government’s Use Of Lawfare Against Muslims Means
Sangh Parivar scrubbed from Delhi Police statement, MGNREGA needs a wage hike, Kuwait & Qatar ban ‘Islamophobic’ Tamil film, first Dalit-Bahujan art show to open in US and ‘stone pelter’ has no hands
A newsletter from The Wire & Galileo Ideas | Contributors: MK Venu, Seema Chishti, Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, Sushant Singh and Tanweer Alam | Editor: Pratik Kanjilal
Snapshot of the day
April 19, 2022
Wasim Shaikh was declared a “stone pelter” by the Collector of Khargone in Madhya Pradesh, and his shop was razed on April 11. Shaikh’s hands were amputated in 2005 following an electrical injury. A father of two, Shaikh has a family of five to feed.
Delhi Police yesterday linked the VHP and Bajrang Dal to the violence in Jahangirpuri in an official statement, which was hastily retracted to scrub references to the Sangh Parivar. The statement had mentioned “organisers of VHP, Bajrang Dal, Delhi Prant, Mukherjee Nagar Jila, Jhandewala” for “carrying out a procession…without any permission”. It also said, “one accused person namely…Jila Sewa Pramukh, Vishwa Hindu Parishad has been arrested”. The edited statement said a case has been “registered against organisers for carrying out a procession… without any permission… one accused person has joined the investigation”. The VHP has made it clear who is calling the shots and has threatened “a battle” if action is taken against its activists.
The Guardian reports that hatred, bigotry and untruth abound as communal violence grips India. “The country appears more divided than ever along Hindu-Muslim lines – and for many, Modi’s BJP is to blame.” Modi is criticised for his silence on religious violence, writes The Times, London.
PM Narendra Modi wrote to his Pakistani counterpart Shehbaz Sharif who reciprocated in equal measure. Here are the two letters.
A Sri Lankan man was lynched by a mob in Sialkot, Pakistan, in December. Yesterday, a court awarded the death sentence to six accused and sent nine others to prison for life. Lynching invites extreme punishment in Pakistan. Over here, Hindutva leader Sadhvi Rithambara has asked Hindu couples to produce four children each, and dedicate two of them to the nation, since “Hindu Rashtra” is imminent.
The Gujarat High Court yesterday told the state government to clarify its stand on the use of loudspeakers for azaan (call of prayer) in mosques. The government had not responded to an earlier notice. In his petition filed in 2020, Dharmendra Prajapati cited a ruling by the Allahabad High Court to seek clear orders to the administration to enforce the ban on the use of loudspeakers for azaan, saying it caused inconvenience.
The mask mandate is back in districts of Haryana and UP adjoining Delhi. The capital will take a decision tomorrow. After a precipitous fall in cases for 11 weeks, LocalCircles estimates that infections have gone up five times in Delhi.
Adani’s Mumbai International Airport has asked Air India to surrender land that is not core to its operations, including four staff colonies that house 1,600 families. Otherwise, it will restrain airline employees from entering.
Coins worth Rs 11 crore have gone missing from the State Bank of India’s vaults. It has sought a CBI probe as the amount is more than Rs 3 crore, the threshold for the apex investigation agency to intervene. SBI, India’s largest lender, and some other large banks have started hiking their benchmark lending rate for all retail and institutional loans.
India aspires to “feed the world”. But experts say the Agriculture Ministry’s estimate of a record yield of 111 million tonnes is unlikely to be met, with “actual production likely to be at least 10% lower due to the March heatwave and also shift in acreage from wheat to mustard.” A “wheat crisis” may be in the making.
Around 57% of children in Uttarakhand are anaemic, reveals a National Health Family Survey report. Uttarkashi is the worst off with 73.6% of children anaemic. Some 42% of pregnant women are anaemic in the state, which has been running eight schemes for four years to deal with malnutrition among children and mothers. Meanwhile, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar singh Dhami has said that “in the interest of faith and culture”, non-Hindus on the Char Dham yatra must have their credentials verified.
The BJP’s poor showing in the West Bengal byelections has affected the rank and file. In the past 24 hours, 14 district-level functionaries have resigned, alleging that “incompetent leaders” are getting priority.
About 60% of Indians do not know much about the country’s history, culture, destinations, nature and food. They don’t know that Gir is the only natural habitat of the Asiatic lion, or that the Khajuraho festival is celebrated in Madhya Pradesh, according to India Quotient, a light-hearted study by Mahindra Holidays to mark its 25th anniversary. Awareness about cuisine is abysmal.
Where Art Belongs is “the first art exhibition in the US exclusively featuring Dalit and Bahujan artists”. Over 40 artists’ work will be displayed, including visual art, poetry and music. Organised by Adavi Myah, an art collective led by Dalit and Bahujan women, it will open on Saturday, April 30 in the Greater Boston area and run for four weeks. Adavi Myah was founded in 2018 and is an amalgam of Telugu and Chhattisgarhi, meaning “Love of the Forest.”
Jaydeep Basu on Indian football’s strange history with head coaches, where they come and go in what is an unending cycle of Indian football.