Nirbhaya Gangrape case

Nirbhaya Gangrape case

The year 2013 started with massive protests, in Delhi and different parts of India, against brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old female physiotherapy intern on 16th December 2012. She succumbed to injuries in a Singapore hospital on 29th December 2012. The incident generated widespread outrage and was widely condemned. People spontaneously came to streets demanding stringent law to curb crime against women. While one of the accused died in police custody in March, the four remaining accused were found guilty of rape and murder and were sentenced to death. The juvenile was booked under the same charges sentenced to three years' imprisonment. The Nirbhaya case made the Nation to speak in one voice against the crimes on women.

Mid Day meal horror in government schools

Mid Day meal horror in government schools

The noble mid day meal scheme which is being implemented in government schools across the country came under scanner after horrific Bihar school meal poisoning incident in which at least 23 students died and dozens more fell ill on 16th July. This incident raised question on quality of the Mid-day meal and overall implementation of the scheme. Same kind of incidents also reported from other parts of the country. Central Government constituted a monitoring committee to look into the quality of food after shortcomings were found in implementation of the scheme. The committee supplemented the efforts of the existing mid-day meal monitoring committee and warned the states if there are any short comings. The vigilance and monitoring committees constituted in every districts.

Justice Verma committee to make stringent law for crime against women

Justice Verma committee  to make stringent law for crime against women

Justice J S Verma committee was constituted to recommend amendments to the Criminal Law so as to provide for quicker trial and enhanced punishment for criminals accused of committing sexual assault against women. It extended the definition of rape and sexual assault and recommended to increase quantum of punishment from ten years of rigorous imprisonment to life imprisonment. It also recommended that sexual intercourse with a minor person shall be deemed rape, and shall be punished with rigorous imprisonment not less than 10 years. Based on recommendations given by Justice Verma Committee, the Parliament passed the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 in March.

Human Rights violation of Hindus in Islamic nations ignored

Human Rights violation of Hindus in Islamic nations ignored

While the violence in Syria and the struggles of migrants with sectarian strife were some of the biggest human rights issues of 2013 for the world, the minorities in Pakistan and Bangladesh were ignored. The issue of rising cases rampant abduction and forceful conversion of Hindu girls to Islam was a grave matter of concern for the Hindu minorities in Islamic Pakistan. On the other hand in Bangladesh, the Hindus face severe violation of their religious rights. The Hindu families who fled to India termed Pakistan a living hell for the Hindus. Malala Yousafzai was awarded European Union’s top human rights prize. Ironically the condition of her minority brothers and sisters in Pakistan worsened in 2013.

High profile people accused of sexual assault

High profile people accused of sexual assault

Many high profile rape and sexual assault cases surprised the nation in which people like chief justice of India, Spiritual guru, media personnel, police officers were accused of sexual exploitation. Tehelka’s chief editor Tarun Tejpal was arrested for allegedly raping junior colleague. A law intern accused retired Supreme Court judge Justice A K Ganguly of sexual assault. Self style spiritual guru Asaram Bapu and his son Narayan Sai were arrested for sexually assaulting minor girl and women. These high profile sexual assault cases brought storm in India. Media played very crucial role in exposing these incidents of violence against women. Media pressure forced the machinery to take quick action against Tarun Tejpal, Asaram Bapu and Narayan Sai.

Supreme Court terms homosexuality criminal offence

Supreme Court terms homosexuality criminal offence

Thousands of Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people stormed on the streets of Delhi after Supreme Court decriminalized homosexual sex between two consenting adults. Setting aside the Delhi High Court verdict of 2009, the apex court said there was no constitutional room for change in Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. LGBT and Human Rights groups condemned the verdict. Law minister Kapil Sibal said the government was considering all options to restore the High Court verdict on Section 377. Many came in support of Gay rights including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi where Yoga guru Baba Ram Dev and Muslim groups welcomed the verdict.

Landmark Food Security bill passed by Parliament

Landmark Food Security bill passed by Parliament

The much talked National Food Security Bill, which seeks to provide heavily-subsidized food to two-thirds of India's 1.23 billion people, was passed by the parliament in September amid fierce protest from opposition. Considered to be a game changer in upcoming 2014 Lok Sabha election, UPA 2 managed to pass the bill despite of reservations from opposition and left parties. The Food Security programme when implemented will be the biggest in the world with the government spending estimated at Rs 125,000 crore annually on supply of about 62 million tonnes of rice, wheat and coarse cereals to 67 per cent of the population. The bill guarantees two-third population the right to 5 Kgs of food grains every month at highly subsidized rates of Rs 1-3 per kg.

Maharashtra passes landmark anti-superstition bill

Maharashtra passes landmark anti-superstition bill

In a landmark step, Maharashtra Assembly passed much discussed anti-superstition bill in winter session of the state legislature on 14th December. This move came nearly three months after the murder of anti-superstition activist Dr Narendra Dabholkar. Instrumental in pushing the state government to frame an anti-superstition, Dabholkar was killed on 20 August in Pune. The police have not been able to trace his assailants yet. The new law seeks to eradicate black magic, blind faith, superstitious beliefs, rituals and sacrifices to drive out evil spirits or ensure a male progeny -- perpetrated by self-styled godmen and witchcraft and wizardry practitioners.

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Vivid manifestations of Hindutva thought were seen in 2013: Bhaiyyaji Joshi

Abhijit Mulye
Nashik, December 30 : 


undefinedThe passing year put before us vivid manifestations and acceptability of the Hindutva thought amongst the intelligentsia of our society, SarKaryavah (General Secretary) of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangha (RSS) Shri. Suresh (Bhaiyaji) Joshi told NewsBharati here today.  

Vivekananda 150th birth anniversary:growing acceptance of Hindutva  

Vivekananda Saardhashati (150th birth anniversary) celebrations started on 12th January 2013 got overwhelming response from all cross sections of the society. Through various symposia, lectures, seminars and other similar kind of events, efforts were made to reach out to the thought leaders of the society. These efforts were received very well and we could see a broader, brighter manifestation of the Hindutva thought through such interactions. We realized that the thought leaders of the society have a much more acceptance to Hindutva than what was perceived earlier, Joshi elaborated.

Rise of AAP is a clear signal to all political parties

In a special interview for the ‘Recap 2013’ section of NewsBharati, Shri. Joshi elaborated on various topics that made news in 2013. When asked about the much talked of success of Aam Aadami Party in Delhi assembly elections and the discussions regarding the new political culture that followed it, Joshi said that this is a clear signal for all the political parties that they should be more careful in choosing candidates.

Dignity of women: Not by law alone: it is a social responsibility

While speaking about the crime against women in our society, Joshi said that, these crimes are an outcome of ill, degraded minds. We, as a society, need to look into the ‘Samsakara’ factor or the values that are inculcated through our societal institutions like family, educational institutions, and media. We will have to ensure that right values are inculcated into the society and this won’t be possible merely by passing some legislation. He said, “Legislation is not an alternative to value system.” Joshi also expressed concern over the demands to nullify recent Supreme Court verdict regarding article 377. He said, homosexuality does not have social sanction in India and does not have any standing in Indian culture. Hence, any attempts to get legal status for that “would not be acceptable”.

Safety and security of Hindus all over the world is responsibility of Bharat 

When asked about the attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh and Pakistan, Joshi said that, it has always been our demand that Indian government should ensure safety and security of Hindus world over. Indian government should convey its concern over such cases to the respective country.

Weak and meek foreign policy towards neighbors

While speaking about the Chinese and Pakistani aggression on the borders along India during the year, Joshi said, such incidences are not new to us, in the sense that they are obvious side effects of the weak external affairs policy which our government has adopted. If we feel that such incidences should not repeat in future, we will have to have our foreign policy corrected. “Any lapse in internal or external security is always a danger. India should take all such actions by Pakistan and China very seriously. India should not bow to any kind of pressure from any international forces or groups. And our external policy needs to have correction in this regard”, he said.Joshi appreciated Indian government’s tough stand in the Devyani Khobragade case and said, this might be an effort to weaken and demoralize India. Government should ensure that nobody dares any such attempt in future.

Government machinery should be more trained to handle natural disasters

Joshi expressed deep condolences towards the lives lost in the natural calamity that hit the state of Uttarakhand earlier this year and said, “We need to ensure that the development plans are made after a due consideration to the geological and geographical factors and are implemented flawlessly”. He praised Indian military forces for their efforts during the calamity and also commended the way in which the voluntary organizations across the nation started relief and rehabilitation operations in the region. He expressed displeasure over the response of the government machinery and said government machinery should ensure proper and complete training in disaster management.