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Padma Lakshmi Tweets On ‘Anti-Muslim Violence’ In India Has Sparked Debate



Padma Lakshmi Tweets On ‘Anti-Muslim Violence’ In India Has Sparked Debate

Padma Lakshmi, an Indian-American author, activist, model, and television host, was reared in the United States but keeps up with events in her homeland of India. Let me tell you that she was born in Madras (presently Chennai), India, into a Tamil Brahmin family. She eventually moved to La Puente, California with her mother and stepfather after immigrating to the United States at the age of four.

Not only that, but she frequently makes remarks about them and expresses her thoughts and ideas about them. She once revealed that she was bullied and faced racial violence as a kid growing up in Los Angeles, which prompted her to battle to overcome “internalised self-loathing.” She is a staunch supporter of women’s rights and an ardent champion of immigrant rights and the independent restaurant business.

She has been a staunch critic of skin-lightening lotions sold to people of colour, particularly in non-white dominated countries. She’s also spoken up about her experiences with colourism in India and the United States.

Padma Laxmi
Padma Lakshmi/Instagram

Lakshmi claimed that she was raped at the age of 16 by her older lover, which she did not report, in a 2018 column for The New York Times. She added that a prior sexual assault she suffered at the age of seven by a relative of her stepfather influenced her choice to remain silent about the rape.

She was transferred to India to live with her grandparents for a year after alerting her mother and stepfather about the attack. She is always known for her outspoken attitude and attracts lots of attention. This time too, she made some comments that attracts a lot of attention, especially from India.

Padma Lakshmi on growing anti-Muslim violence in India

She always made statements that made her headlines. Now this time, recently, she spoke out against ‘anti-Muslim violence’ and ‘communal hatred in India’ on her official Twitter account. She said,

“Sickening to see the violence against Muslims celebrated in India. The widespread anti-Muslim rhetoric preys on fear and poisons people. This propaganda is dangerous and nefarious because when you consider someone less than it’s much easier to participate in their oppression.”

Addressing the Hindus in India, she added,

“Fellow Hindus, don’t succumb to this fear-mongering. There is no threat to Hinduism in India or anywhere else. True spirituality doesn’t include any room for sowing hatred of any kind. People of all faiths should be able to live peacefully together in this ancient, vast land.”

She stressed,

“People of all faiths should be able to live peacefully together in this ancient, vast land.”

In a later sequence of tweets, Lakshmi tagged news articles from international publications such as The Guardian and The Los Angeles Times on the Jahangirpuri clash between two communities during a Hanuman Jayanti procession in Delhi, the violence in Madhya Pradesh’s Khargone city during Ram Navami celebrations earlier this month and the role of social media in it, as well as how hate-filled songs are used to insult individuals of other faiths and communal violence.

While some applauded her for standing up for Indian Muslims and preaching about peace and unity, her stance did not sit well with others. Have a look at them:

On the 16th of April 2022, a Hindu–Muslim confrontation happened in Delhi’s Jahangirpuri neighbourhood, in the midst of a Hindu march commemorating Hanuman Jayanti. The altercation occurred during the third march of the day, which came to an abrupt end near a mosque where Muslims were praying for Ramadan. Many people were hurt, including a police officer, when stones were thrown and bullets were fired. A total of 23 persons were detained, including sixteen adults and two minors.

A ‘Tiranga Yatra’ was organised by Hindu and Muslim people of the region over a week later to send a message of peace and love.

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Read What Aurangzeb Said When He Ordered The Demolition Of Kashi Vishwanath Temple



Read What Aurangzeb Said When He Ordered The Demolition Of Kashi Vishwanath Temple

The civic court ordered the video survey after five ladies filed a petition asking for permission to worship Hindu deities whose statues are installed on the exterior wall of Gyanvapi Masjid.

However, the survey was halted due to complaints from the mosque committee, who argued that the court-appointed attorney commissioner did not have the authority to video within the mosque. They later accused him of prejudice and requested that he be replaced. But the court ignored this and on May 12, the court directed the committee to finish the poll and submit its findings by May 17.

The Anjuman Intezamia Masjid committee filed a petition with the Supreme Court, requesting a stay on surveying the Kashi Vishwanath temple-Gyanvapi Masjid complex.

Kashi Vishwanath temple-Gyanvapi Masjid complex

Gyanvapi Masjid case

On May 14, the exercise proceeded under strict security. On Day 1, four basement rooms were videotaped, three of which belonged to Muslims and one to Hindus. Sources claim that half of the survey has been completed.

After this, the western wall of the Gyanvapi complex was studied on Day 2, where the ruins of the Hindu temple destroyed can still be seen and whose photographs represent the best testimony. The fourth room was opened for this purpose.

On May 16, the court-ordered videography survey of the Gyanvapi Masjid complex was finished. But it created another controversy as a Hindu lawyer claimed that a ‘shivling’ had been discovered within a ‘wazukhana,’ or pond, on the mosque property.

Later on, the Supreme Court directed local authorities to safeguard the ‘shivling; that was allegedly discovered in Varanasi’s Gyanvapi Mosque complex, without impeding Muslims’ freedom to pray.

The court-appointed special assistant commissioner, Vishal Singh, presented the findings on the Gyanvapi mosque video survey to the Varanasi court on Thursday, May 19. The courtroom was packed with witnesses from both sides. Since then, both claim their own versions of the truth, but the real question is what’s the actual matter? So, let’s find out about it and then, later, we will go through the evidence of its demolition.

Gyanvapi Mosque history

What’s the matter?

The Hindu side alleges that the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb demolished a part of the Kashi Vishwanath temple on which the Gyanvapi mosque now sits.

The evidence of the Kashi Vishwanath temple’s demolition is mentioned in Maasir-i-Alamgiri, Saqi Mustaid Khan’s history of Aurangzeb’s reign.

The initial portion of the book was written while the emperor was still living, and the remainder was finished after he died. Let me inform you that this book was originally written in Persian and translated during British rule by historian Jadunath Sarkar.

aurangzeb gyanvapi masjid

Below are some of the important snippets from Maasir-i-Alamgiri book

According to the text in Maasir-i-Alamgiri, the emperor learned of the doctrines of “misbelievers” at Benaras on April 8, 1669. A paragraph reads,

“The lord cherisher of faith learnt that in the provinces of Tetta, Multan, and specially in Benaras, the brahmin misbelievers used to teach their false book in their established schools and that admirers and students of both Hindu and Muslim used to come from great distances to these misguided men to acquire this vile learning.”

It further says,

“His majesty eager to establish Islam orders to the governor of all the provinces to demolish the schools and temples of the infidels and with the utmost urgency to put down the teachings and public practice of the religion of these misbelievers.”

Maasir-I-Alamgiri Book
Maasir-I-Alamgiri Aurangzeb

According to the book, on September 2, 1669, it was claimed that the emperor’s officers had destroyed the temple of Kashi Vishwanath in Varanasi on his orders.

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Know Why This Couple Is Suing Their Son & Bahu For Rs 5 Cr For Not Giving Them A Grandchild



Know Why This Couple Is Suing Their Son & Bahu For Rs 5 Cr For Not Giving Them A Grandchild

In India, the bond between grandparents and their grandchild seems very special. That’s why whenever someone’s child is getting married, all their parents want is a grandchild. It’s not that they don’t love their child so much but the grandchild holds a special place in each other’s hearts.

But sometimes, this love can be changed into obsession. The same happened recently. A couple has filed a court action against their son and daughter-in-law in Uttarakhand, requesting either a grandchild or Rs 5 crore in compensation. Yes, you heard it right!

The Haridwar parents claimed to have put money into their son’s schooling. They had to take out a loan to construct their home and are now bankrupt. As reported by ANI, Sanjeev R Prasad and Sadhana Prasad told a court in Uttarakhand on Wednesday,

“We just wanted a grandchild.”

After paying for his son’s education and training in America, Prasad claims he has no money left. As quoted by ANI, he said,

“I gave my son all my money, got him trained in America. I don’t have any money now. We have taken a loan from bank to build home. We’re troubled financially and personally. We have demanded Rs 2.5 crore each from both my son and daughter-in-law in our petition.”

He added,

“We got them married in 2016 in the hopes of having grandchildren. We didn’t care about gender, we just wanted a grandchild.”

According to the Times of India, the Rs 5 crore compensation they are seeking includes the expense of a five-star wedding event, an $80,000 luxury automobile, and paying for the couple’s vacation overseas. The parents also paid $65,000 to have their son trained as a pilot in the United States, only to have him return to India jobless, according to the newspaper.

According to sources, Sanjeev Prasad and Sadhana Prasad’s son Shrey Sagar married Shubhangi in 2016. The couple travelled to Thailand for their honeymoon.

Sadhana Prasad said,

“We did everything for our child. We raised him in the best possible manner. We spent Rs 35 lakhs and sent him to the USA for his pilot training course, and spent extra Rs 20 lakhs for his posh lifestyle. Also, we bought an Audi car for him and his wife. The car cost us a loan worth Rs 65 lakhs. We got him married in 2016 so that he could continue our family name. But it’s been six years and they are not fulfilling our wish.”

The elderly couple said in their petition,

“We also had to take a loan to build our house and now we are going through a lot of financial hardships. Mentally too we are quite disturbed because we are living alone.”

In this case, the parents’ lawyer is Advocate AK Srivastava. He told ANI,

“This case portrays the truth of society. We invest in our children, and make them capable of working in good firms. Children owe their parents basic financial care. The parents have demanded either a grandchild within a year or compensation of Rs 5 crores.”

While some people backed the elderly couple’s complaint, others criticised them for putting pressure on their son and daughter-in-law. On social media, many people expressed their opinion on this case. One user wrote,

While another user pointed out,

Another user went on to write,

What’s your take on this case?

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Shashi Tharoor-Vivek Agnihotri-Anupam Kher Battle Over The Kashmir Files Ban In Singapore



Shashi Tharoor-Vivek Agnihotri-Anupam Kher Battle Over The Kashmir Files Ban In Singapore

It’s not unfair to say that The Kashmir Files emerged as one of the most talked-about movies. The movie has attracted lots of mixed reviews. It was released on March 11th, and every day since then, a fresh controversy has erupted over the film.

Let me inform you that the film is based on the genocide of Kashmiri Hindus during the 1990 Kashmir unrest. The film stars an excellent cast including Anupam Kher, Darshan Kumaar, Mithun Chakraborty, and Pallavi Joshi. Tej Narayan Agarwal, Abhishek Agarwal, Pallavi Joshi, and Vivek Agnihotri produced the film under the labels of Zee Studios, IAmBuddha, and Abhishek Agarwal Arts.

The Kashmir Files poster

But despite having lots of credible casts and makers, the film has made huge headlines all over the world. Recently, the Singapore government has blocked the release of The Kashmir Files in their country. The decision has attracted lots of reactions from various fields. Recently, After Vivek Agnihotri’s film, The Kashmir Files, was banned in Singapore, filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri got into a verbal confrontation with politician Shashi Tharoor when Tharoor used Twitter to share a comment on the ban, writing,

“Film promoted by India’s ruling party, #KashmirFiles, banned in Singapore.”

Agnihotri responded to Tharoor’s tweet by calling Singapore the “most regressive censor in the world.” He wrote,

“Dear fopdoodle, gnashnab @ShashiTharoor, FYI, Singapore is most regressive censor in the world.”

He went on to say that the government has even banned The Last Temptations of Jesus Christ, and that Tharoor should question him about it. He wrote,

“It even banned The Last Temptations of Jesus Christ (ask your madam). Even a romantic film called #TheLeelaHotelFiles will be banned. Pl stop making fun of Kashmiri Hindu Genocide.”

Agnihotri also wondered if Tharoor’s late wife, Sunanda Pushkar, was a Kashmiri Hindu. He went on to say that Tharoor should apologise to Sunanda’s soul and delete the tweet. He wrote,

“Hey @ShashiTharoor, Is this true that Late Sunanda Pushkar was a Kashmiri Hindu? Is the enclosed SS true? If yes, then in Hindu tradition, to respect the dead, you must delete your tweet and apologise to her soul.”

Anupam Kher, who portrayed the lead in the film, also added his thoughts through Twitter. He wrote,

“Dear @ShashiTharoor! Your callousness towards the #KashmiriHindus genocide is tragic. If nothing else at least for #Sunanda’s sake who was a Kashmiri herself you should show some sensitivity towards #KashmiriPandits & not feel victorious about a country banning #TheKashmirFiles!”

Soon after this, Shashi Tharoor retweets Vivek Agnihotri and Anupam Kher, saying,

“Dragging my late wife Sunanda was unwarranted and contemptible.”

He also stated that he tweeted a factual news item without making any remarks on the substance of the film, which he had not watched. He went on to say about her late wife,

One thing I know, unlike those attempting to exploit her when she is not around to speak for herself: She believed in reconciliation, not hate.

According to Channel News Asia, The Kashmir Files were prohibited by Singapore officials due to its “provocative and one-sided portrayal of Muslims and the depictions of Hindus being persecuted in the on-going conflict in Kashmir.”

They also added,

“These representations have the potential to cause enmity between different communities, and disrupt social cohesion and religious harmony in our multiracial and multi-religious society.”

The Kashmir Files is centred on the lives of Kashmiri Pandits in 1990 and is based on first-generation victims of the massacre. It depicts the hardship, struggle, and anguish experienced by those caught up in the genocide in Kashmir.

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