Human Rights

Black propaganda: news portal eats humble pie

New Delhi: Rediff.com, a known news portal with anti-Muslim slant, published a malicious news item on 1 April 2010 (see box). It came to my attention next day and I at once tried to post a comment (see box) on the site using the “comment” button. But despite repeated attempts on 2 and 3 April the comment was not accepted by the portal because it has programmed its computer to reject comments containing certain words. The site does not offer you any alternative way to send your comments or communications as it lacks the usual “Contact Us” section found on almost every website. In the evening of 3 April, I sent an email to the reporter using his email ID which I knew as he had earlier interviewed me for the website. He replied without delay saying that “the comment will be put up by tonight. That is my assurance”. But the comment could not be seen on the portal until the morning of 5 April when the reporter informed me that the rejoinder has been placed on the site.

In the meanwhile, I had alerted friends and human rights activists who started contacting the portal and the reporter himself who had filed the said report. There were indications of a lawsuit to be filed against the portal and complaining to the Press Council of India while others planned agitation in some ways. We do not know what went in the offices of the portal in India and the US (the portal is registered in the US and governed its cyber laws which are more stringent than India’s) but we were surprised that the news item has been removed altogether from the portal in the morning of 6 April.

This small but significant incident shows that a little concerted activism does yeild results. It is not common for big newspapers and mighty websites to retract or remove published material. This incident shows that we can defeat lies and black propaganda with concerted efforts including legal action.

Rediff.com story 
Illegal madrassas: A breeding ground of terror
April 01, 2010
Intelligence agencies are worried about nearly 9,000 illegal madrassas which have mushroomed across India [ Images ] without requisite approval by the authorities.

India has over 21,000 registered madrassas approved by the respective state governments and the Wakf Board.

IB sources say efforts are on to shut down illegal madrassas and the state authorities have been warned about their operations. Intelligence officials suspect Pakistan-based outfits may be using these illegal madrassas to carry out their operations in India, after the crackdown on terror modules and sleeper cells.

IB officials say nearly 3,000 illegal madrassas have been set up in the last year, with Maharashtra [ Images ] and Kerala [ Images ] having the maximum concentration. They claim that Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence has managed to pump in nearly Rs 20 crore to fund these illegal institutions.

These institutions do not report to the Wakf Board and their syllabus is the same as the one followed in madrassas in Pakistan, say IB sources. The syllabus is based on the Anwar al-Awlaki school of thought, which has been adopted by Lashkar-e-Tayiba’s [ Images ] front organisation Jamat-ud-Dawa, and speaks of 44 different ways to perform jihad

At class V level in these madrassas, students are taught that Hindus helped the British set up their empire in India. In class 6 and class 7, the students are clearly told that there is no way in which they should reconcile with India, since the only way to attain total freedom is by fighting and becoming martyrs.

Earlier, the various terror outfits concentrated on recruiting people for sleeper cells and modules, but soon realised that the concept of jihad needed to be introduced at an younger age to encourage fundamentalism. The illegal madrasas want to ensure that the students learn to internalise the jihadi school of thought.

Tracking such madrassas poses a problem for intelligence agencies, as they keep shifting base, and the fact that most of their students are children invariably shields them from any kind of suspicion.

Vicky Nanjappa
http://news.rediff.com/report/2010/apr/01/illegal-madrassas-a-breeding-ground-of-terror.htm

Rejoinder
“Illegal madrasas” is a meaningless term since you do not require a permit to establish a madrasa in our country just as you do not require a permit to establish a school. The biggest madrasas in India like Deoband and Nadwatul Ulama are not registered with any Waqf or other agency.

What this IB stenographer quotes is total rubbish and pack of lies manufactured by the IB’s story-tellers who could get better compensation for their efforts in Bollywood.

There is no madrasa in India which teaches Pakistani syllabus and no madrasa which teaches violence. If there is one, show me. You are talking of thousands of such madrasas and claiming that the ISI has pumped in Rs 20 crore for the purpose! Just show me one single such madrasa anywhere in the country so that we may cross-check.  

And tell me: if the IB is so sure about this crude fiction, has it closed down one single such madrasa anywhere in the country? If yes, where? If not, just shut up and stop this black Goebbelsian propaganda against the Muslim community.

Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan
Editor, The Milli Gazette
New Delhi, 2 April 2010

 

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-30 April 2010 on page no. 11

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