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Media In India/elsewhere
<!--QuoteBegin-sankara+Nov 2 2006, 02:33 PM-->QUOTE(sankara @ Nov 2 2006, 02:33 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->
Interesting choice of words - <i>India's Plan to Kill Muslim</i>..not hang a <i>terrorist</i>, but kill a muslim - out of nowhere and for no reason. By highlighting the religion aspect of it, the reporting seems to suggest that it is more about atrocities or conspiracy against muslims -  by who else but the majority hindus.

<i>In a trial riddled with shortcomings</i> - give me a break!

that's exactlt the irony of times we live in, where a criminal is identified by his religion rather than the deeds he has done.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Hindu schoolboy turned terrorist planned to kill thousands
A middle class British Muslim plotted the murder of tens of thousands of innocent people in a series of horrific attacks that would create a 'black day for the enemies of Islam', a court heard.

Al Qaeda terrorist Dhiren Barot - who was raised a Hindu but converted aged 20 - planned a series of atrocities to 'commit mass murder' in Britain and the USA using radioactive bombs and a petrol tanker.

The 34-year-old banker's son also drew up breathtaking plans to drive explosives-packed limousines into underground car parks and blow up a series of five star hotels in London's West End, including The Ritz.

Other appalling ideas included blowing up the Heathrow Express rail shuttle and a devastating plan to Tube train travelling through a River Thames tunnel.

"Imagine the chaos that would be caused if a powerful explosion were to rip through here and actually rupture the river itself," he wrote in one chilling note.

"This would cause pandemonium, what with the explosions, flooding, drowning, etc that would occur."

The court heard a series of meticulously compiled dossiers revealed plots to launch simultaneous attacks on 'iconic' financial targets in the USA such as the New York Stock Exchange, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

Barot is the most senior Al Qaeda terrorist ever to be convicted by a British court.

Opening a two day sentencing hearing at Woolwich Crown Court, Edmund Lawson, QC, told how an unremarkable young men from a North West London suburb left Britain to attend terror training camps in Kashmir and became a 'member or close associate of the Al Qaeda terrorist organisation.'

This, he said, led to a conspiracy to set off 'lethal explosions' in Britain and the US.

"The principal object was to kill hundreds if not thousands of people without warning," he said, adding that Barot wanted to emulate the Madrid train bombings of 2004 which killed almost 200 people.

Barot, who faces life in jail when sentenced today and who has already pleaded guilty to conspiracy to murder, sat quietly in the dock, leafing through the 130 page document detailing his murderous bomb blitz.

FBI sources have previously claimed the former airline ticket clerk has met Al Qaeda's September 11 mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Hambali, the Bali bomber.

Between 2000 and 2004, Barot kept Al Qaeda leaders in Pakistan fully briefed of his plans.

His last 'presentation' to them is thought to have been in February 2004.

But the maniac was stopped thanks to 'outstanding detective work' from Scotland Yard whose officers arrested him in August 2004 following the discovery of a computer in Pakistan.

Flanked by two security guards and wearing jeans, brown leather deck shoes and a zip up cardigan, he looked expressionless as chilling reconnaissance video footage he filmed of his New York targets was screened.

It included Barot mimicking the sound of an explosion as he zooms in on the World Trade Centre - just five months before the September 11 attacks.


Barot was born in India in December 1971. His parents emigrated to Britain in 1972 and he was raised a Hindu in North West London.

He attended Kingsbury Grammar School where he took a number of GCSEs and after leaving school, he obtained a City and Guilds certificate in tourism.

The court heard how Barot worked as airline ticket clerk for Air Malta in Piccadilly, central London, between 1991 and 1995.

An application to transfer to Heathrow was turned down and he quit - telling colleagues that he planned to take a 'long overseas trip'.

Mr Lawson said: "That much was true. He went for a long training session at a terrorist training camp in Pakistan."

Police found records of one other job: a night porter responsible for security at a luxury apartment block in London in 2002.

Barot has never claimed benefits but, significantly say the Crown, has received financial 'support' from 'someone or some organisation'.

Detectives discovered that regular payments of £1,000 have been made into an Abbey National account. Barot has no previous criminal convictions.


In December 1991, aged 20, Barot converted to Islam.

Mr Lawson said: "It was at some time after that he seemed to be pursuing the way of terrorism."

By 1992, he was devout, attending meetings and reading scriptures to help him lead a better life.

But the court heard: "As time went by he became involved in attending meetings which were described as semi extreme and more radical.

"He heard, for the first time, of the Mujahideen, Jihad, and references to the Kuffar (disbelievers)".

In 1995, Barot flew to Pakistan and the disputed territory of Kashmir where he attended a terrorist training camp.

It was, said the Crown, 'intensive training in various aspects of terrorism' for at least five months.

Police recovered copious notes made by Barot - hidden in a garage in North West London in 2004.

The jottings contained detailed information about machine guns, grenades and poisons. By the time Barot had finished his time in Pakistan, he possessed a vast array of military skills.

Much of his time there was chronicled in a book 'The Army of Madinah in Kashmir' - published in Britain in 1999 - and penned under the alias 'Esa Al-Hindi'.


Analysis of Barot's notebooks revealed a terrifying list of ways in which to inflict mass murder.

It was, said Mr Lawson, a 'catalogue of weaponry' and even contained recipes to inflict 'germ warfare' on the West.

He was told how to use Kalashnikov rifles, AK47 assault weapons, and was even given advice on 'how to bow up a bridge'.

There were 'standard notes on various types of grenades'. A chapter headed 'The Specialist' told the reader how to run a fully functioning chemical laboratory.

Chemicals, such as sulphuric acid were identified, as were methods for making explosives and poisons.

Police found 'simple bomb diagrams', recipes for nitroglycerine, and the 'means to produce a variety of explosive devices'.

There were descriptions of fuses, pyrotechnic devices and helpful hints on how to make Molotov Cocktails, Napalm bombs and the 'basic design of a phosphorous bomb'.

The poisons section was particularly horrific, It contained details of cyanide gas, a substance known as 'touching poison' and castor beans - better known as the lethal chemical, ricin.

Experts from the government science research lab at Porton Down in Wiltshire revealed that four of the recipes were 'designed to produce poisonous materials derived from harmful bacteria'.

These, said Mr Lawson, 'included a recipe to produce botulinum toxin, the most toxic substance known to man'.


Armed with the expertise gained in the Kashmiri mountains, Barot now crissed-crossed the world. Between 1998 and 2000 he visited Pakistan, Malaysia and the Philippines.

But his extraordinary new life as an Islamic terrorist was aided, say the Crown, by his uncanny knack of 'losing' his British passport. The court heard how on least three occasions, he reported the loss of the travel document.

Meanwhile, he was also successfully obtaining false passports in other people's names as well as visas to visit Pakistan.

Barot used similar tactics to get hold of library reading cards in London - to allow him to covertly study the textbooks of his choice at Brunel University in West London. Police also found a false NUS card.

The motive for the 'serial loss' of passports, said Mr Lawson, was for Barot to 'cover his tracks'.

His 'terrorist tradecraft' also included use of anti surveillance techniques. Barot, who was 'surveillance conscious', would instruct drivers to continuously drive around roundabouts to shake off suspected tails.

Rarely spending more than one night in a flat, he spoke in code over the phone and never rang any alleged co-consprirator on a mobile. Public kiosks were used.

Likewise, Barot avoided home computers, preferring the anonymity of Internet cafes. On one occasion, two of alleged conspirators, even made a 400 mile round trip to Swansea to send an e-mail. E-mails were encrypted and detectives have still to crack some of the codes.

Members of the alleged gang used the names 'Bridget Jones Diaries, and 'Night with Kylie' as e-mail addresses and regularly discussed pop music and sex as a cover.


Barot planned to blow up some of America's 'iconic' financial institutions. He arrived in New York in 2000, telling immigration officials he was a 'tourist'.

Indeed, he even took helicopter flights around Manhattan. But his real motive was to blow up targets including the New York Stock Exchange, the Prudential Building in New Jersey, the Washington-based International Monetary Fund and World Bank and the Citigroup tower in New York.

These bombings were planned for 2000 and 2001 but were 'shelved' after the September 11 attacks in 2001 on New York and Washington. But they were 'not forgotten'.

The court heard how the plans were still being worked on in February 2004 - six months before Barot's arrest.

Mr Lawson outlined the planned outrage: "Various possible methods of attack were raised for consideration, including parking limousines packed with explosives next to buildings or driving them into underground car parks.

"Arson, by means of hijacked petrol tankers or igniting gas cylinders was also discussed, as was attack by the use of an aeroplane. The plans involved the giving of no warnings and were designed to kill as many as possible."

The court was shown handheld video footage of some of the targets.

Filmed in April 2001 in New York, it was recovered from a video cassette of the Bruce Willis thriller Die Hard With A Vengeance, a copy of which was found in an address linked to Barot.

During 120 minutes of reconnaissance footage, Barot zooms in on financial targets and Jewish addresses, including synagogues.

At one stage, when the camera films the soon to be attacked World Trade Centre - Barot turns the camera on its side and a voice can be heard imitating an explosion by saying: 'Wee, Bang!'.

However there is no evidence that Barot knew of the subsequent attacks although the footage was shot just five months before September 11.

Outlining the Prudential plan, Mr Lawson said the idea would be to place a 'limousine in a VIP underground car park with all, except the front seats removed in order to facilitate maximum space'.


The Gas Limos project, said Mr Lawson, 'might be seen as the culmination of Barot's murderous plans' and was only uncovered when a computer was discovered in Pakistan in July 2004.

Had it succeeded it would have been the most devastating peace-time assault on these shores.

The 'GLP' as it was dubbed, was to be 'series of co-ordinated terrorist attacks to be launched in this country' and was drawn up before and after the train bombings in Madrid in March 2004.

This was described by Barot as a 'respectable project' which has 'encouraged us' and early in 2004 he flew to Pakistan to make a 'presentation' of the project.

The plans were now fully costed and Mr Lawson added: "It is one of most chilling aspects of the plan is that they were drawn up as business plans".

Hotels and railways were to be hit in a devastating wave of attacks. One idea was pack three limousines with gas cylinders and detonate the devices in underground car parks.

The hotel chains named in court were the Marriott and the Hyatt Carlton. Other luxury targets named were the Dorchester, the Berkeley, the Lanesborough, the Intercontinental and the Savoy.

Major rail terminals to be hit were Paddington, King's Cross and Waterloo.

In what was described as a 'collateral' project, a 'radiation dispersal' device' - better known as a 'dirty bomb' was to be let off. Other ideas included using a petrol tanker to 'attack the rail or underground network'.

Targets included the Heathrow Express rail shuttle service and blowing up a tube train while crossing the River Thames by tunnel.

Painting a truly horrific picture of the inevitable carnage, Barot wrote: "Imagine the chaos that would be caused if a powerful explosion were to rip through here and actually rupture the river itself.

"This would cause pandemonium, what with the explosions, flooding, drowning, etc that would occur, result."

The dirty bomb plan was described in fuller detail in a computer folder known as 'Brad Pit' inside a subsection headed 'Radioactive children'.

This said: "An RDD attack can produce general panic, health consequences, including immediate fatalities and long term incidences in cancer incidence, long term denial of property use, disruption of services and property and facility decontamination needs."

In Barot's words, the GLP was all about 'creating another black day for the enemies of Islam and a victory for the Muslims' and his plans had 'not left any stone unturned'.

In a report to Al Qaeda chiefs, he wrote: "I have spent countless weeks, days, hours and months pouring over literature, material as well as exploration in order to furnish this report/presentation to the highest possible standard."


Look at the mischief-making caption - '<i>Hindu</i> schoolboy turned terrorist.....' The heading conveys the impression that it is a hindu who plotted to launch terrorist attacks, and unless one reads the entire article, it isn't apparent at first glance that it is not a hindu, but a <i>muslim</i>, converted as he may be.

Another news caption in the same paper reads <i>''Profile: Terror plotter was Hindu who converted to Islam</i>.''

There are numerous westerners, who converted to islam, and are part of the al-Qaeda network. Some of them have been caught and are serving time. I didn't see the captions during their arrests reading as "<i>christians</i> planned to blow up...." or "<i>christians</i> arrested for terrorist attacks..."

So, why bring in the Hindu aspect to focus in this particular case ?

Hindus living in the UK should protest and write letters to this paper, pointing out the deliberate attempt by the newspaper to mislead the public and defame hinduism.
14 hours back, I posted my one liner comment only mentioning that title is misleading, and ofcourse they have decided not to post. Just show purpose of misleading title. Britisher can never leave racism.

Books Fall Apart (E.M. Forster's biography, now in tatters)
I've been working on a chapter on E.M. Forster's attitude to Indian communalism... So earlier this week I reread A Passage to India, and today I was reading my old copy of P.N. Furbank's E.M. Forster: A Life (well-used already when I bought it).

I was happily reading away at Yale -- when the book fell totally apart! First the spine cracked, then the pages separated from the cover, and the pages of the book began to come apart in chunks. Reading from now is like eating crumb cake without a napkin... .

But at least I found some good stuff. The long and short of it is, Forster preferred Indian Muslims to Hindus. He saw Muslims as having the basic attributes of civilized social order, while Hindus were a confused muddle. So you have letters like the following one to his aunt (6 November 1921), from his second trip to India:

The more I know [about Hindus] the less I understand. With the Mohammedans it is different. When after the nightmare of Gokul Ashtami [a Hindu festival], I stood on the minaret of the Taj in Agra, and heard the evening cal to prayer from the adjacent mosque, I knew at all events where I stood and what I heard; it was a land that was not merely atmosphere but had definite outlines and horizons. So with the Mohammedan friends of Masood [Forster's Oxford friend, an aristocrat from Hyderabad] whom I am meeting now. They may not be as subtle or as suggestive as the Hindus, but I can follow what they are saying.

Did Forster have some kind of racial identification with Muslims, as fellow conquerors of India? I tend to think not. Actually he recognized and respected his distance from the Muslims he knew, and from Islam in general. I think, in contrast to Hinduism and Buddhism, which represented the muddled horizon of Orientalism for Forster, he feels more aesthetically and philosophically engaged by what he wants to identify as an "Islamic world-view." For Forster, Muslims represent architecture and order, while Hindus represent earth, mud, and muddle.</b>
- posted by Amardeep @ 3:05 PM

A Mini-Lecture on Liberalization in India and Cultural Hybridity

For the most part, before the 1990s the Indian view of the west was rather negative. If you ended up going there, life would be lonely. You would be bereft of family (family is very important in Indian culture), and western morals were thought to be very corrupting. If you look at Hindi films from the 1960s, whenever an Indian goes abroad he (it was usually he) would find himself seduced by loose western women and ruined by booze... It was an either/or proposition: you were either Indian and traditional, or you were westernized and modern. All that has changed now. After 1990, the Indian central government started a policy of economic liberalization that allowed more foreign-made products to enter the Indian marketplace. With the advent of satellite television in the mid 1990s, the average person's exposure to things outside India changed overnight.

A whole bunch of changes have happened at once. The liberalization of the media, along with the (more recent) advent of the internet as well as cheap cellular phones with cheap international calling means that it's possible for many Indians to stay directly in touch with what is happening outside of India. So instead of a huge gulf dividing east and west, the west is seen as someplace that is more or less immediately accessible. Also, the old idea of “either/or” is finished – what is much more prevalent now is the image of hybridity – you can have India and America at the same time. You see this in the popular music, which is often quite westernized (without giving up a distinctly Indian flavor), as well as in literature, and the movies.

Unlike in the conventional model, the pattern of borrowing in hybridity can go both ways. Indeed, one could speak of a kind of "economy of cultural influences," which has liberalized alongside the "real" economies of nation-states. The U.S. would be a net exporter in such an economy, but this is not necessarily permanent... At any rate, Indian cultural artifacts borrow from the U.S., while America borrows back. With Hindi songs that are sampled by rap producers, for instance, you often find that after a couple of months, the sampled song is remixed and re-Indianized by Indian producers! An example of this is Jyoti's “Thora Resham Lagta Hai,” which was an Indian remix of the U.S. Hit by Truth Hurts, “Addictive,” which in turn sampled an old Lata Mangeshkar track.

In the recent outsourcing boom, which has created many high tech jobs in India, many Indians see the full fruition of an east-west merger fueled by technology (it is only possible because of high speed internet connections – that connect people 15,000 miles apart in real time), and of course economic globalization.
This trend has been good for India in many ways. Besides generating high-paying jobs, it has had the advantage of keeping a lot of India's high tech talent at home. Until recently, the best fate for a graduate of India's prestigious IIT colleges was a job in San Jose, California. Now it is quite possible to go to Bangalore and have access to exactly the same kinds of opportunities. This reduces the “brain drain,” which hampered India's development so much in the 1970s and 80s.

Many of these issues are circulating in the recent Hindi film Kal Ho Naa Ho (Tomorrow Might Happen), which came out in 2003. The film was entirely shot on location in New York, and features dozens of shots of the post 9/11 New York skyline, as well as several marqee street locations – like Times Square, Union Square, and Astor Place. It's part of a new trend of high-budget, high-production value films (very modern style), but in some ways it also sticks to some of the conventional tendencies of Hindi cinema (including serious melodrama).

The tone of the movie is extremely upbeat about life for Indians living abroad, and manages to do this while also being highly nationalistic (pro-Indian culture). In a way the dominant image of the film is not that Indians adapt to New York, though that is certainly part of what the film is trying to show. But more than that, the film seems to be suggesting that Indians have colonized New York...

[After this I showed the opening of Kal Ho Naa Ho, and then the crazy song/dance sequence “Pretty Woman”]

Jethmalani good slap on Sagarika Ghose <!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Media should know its Laksham Rekha, stupidty of Ghose at its best.
Media nonsense of public opinion and sick lady is dragging his family into case.
Finally someone is showing <!--emo&:f*(k--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/f*(k.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='f*(k.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-sankara+Nov 7 2006, 01:37 PM-->QUOTE(sankara @ Nov 7 2006, 01:37 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Hindus living in the UK should protest and write letters to this paper, pointing out the deliberate attempt by the newspaper to mislead the public and defame hinduism.
What an irony? The paper suggests that hindus are terrorists, and you are asking for paper protests instead of the traditional islamic reaction of burning embassies. Perhaps this shows how an unconverted Hindu thinks.
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Nov 8 2006, 02:42 PM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Nov 8 2006, 02:42 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Jethmalani good slap on Sagarika Ghose  <!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo-->


<!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo-->

That video is a must-see video

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