Category Archives: General

Gay and lesbian sex legalized

Well, it was high time. By quashing section 377 the Delhi High Court has given a ray of hope to the citizens of the country: good things happen here too, it’s not just about politics, religion, racketeering and money-making. The law against consensual gay and lesbian sex was enacted by the British way back in 1860 and it has long been abolished by the British themselves in their own country.

I don’t think there is much social opposition in India, and it was just due to laziness and nonchalance. We Indians are the epitome of the “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” attitude.

Personally I feel the ancient liberal sexual practices in India are way overrated but yes, we were already indulging in libidinous exercises of byzantine complexities while in other civilizations they were mostly doing the doggy sex behind the bushes. In fact we have had many androgynous gods having sex with themselves and in fact such tendencies were as normal as giving a peck of familiarity to a total stranger in a page-3 party.

So does it solve the harassment problem for gays and lesbians? Hardly. Harassing and annoying people is our cultural obsession and it has got nothing to do with your sexuality. In India you can be harassed for being a woman, a child, a disabled, a poor person, a person with no connections, a minority, a majority, a tourist, a dog, a cow, a buffaloe, I mean, you can be harassed just because you exist, even if you’re a stone. The local policeman will kick you in the butt even before you can utter “human rights”. So forget a harassment-free life. But yes, it’s a progressive step. Some blokes will challenge it in the Supreme Court, but there is a fat chance the apex dudes will reverse the judgment.

Of course protests will come from religious quarters. Take for instance this moronic outburst by the Sikh clergy:

A member of radical Sikh group Dal Khalsa said on condition of anonymity: “This day should be remembered as a ‘black day’ in the history of mankind. We are unable to understand that how our judiciary can push the whole humanity towards deterioration, just to make a handful of eccentric and wayward individuals happy.

I mean, a “black day”? So much shit happens around us, and they call this a “black day”? Anyway, this is just the beginning of religious looniness on this subject. Reactions from the mullahs and Bajrang dalis will be eagerly awaited.

The descendant of Bahadur Shah Zafar runs a tea stall in Calcutta

I have been reading about this for quite a while but just now I again came across this BBC feature that talks about the great-great-granddaughter of Bahadur Shah Zafar selling tea in Calcutta to earn a living. According to the report Coal India has taken an initiative and given her a C-level job.

But the article wrongly refers to the last Mughal as the “hero of the first war of Independence”. He was as clueless as anybody could get, and equally reluctant to get on the wrong side of the British. He was forced into an oblique leadership by mutineers desperately looking for a focus, and that time, restoring the glory of the Mughal empire became their focus. He totally went nuts when the British eventually captured him and dispatched him to Burma along with her queens, princes and concubines and kept him there on a meager monthly allowance.

I read William Dalrymple’s book on him a long time ago so I don’t remember whether his sons were sent to London or not. But if they were, after his death, it seems strange that his great-great-granddaughter ended up in the slums of Calcutta.

Illustrious or not, Bahadur Shah Zafar was the last emperor and it’s a pity that his descendants are living in penury. It tells a lot about our society. I don’t mean to say that just by the dint of belonging to a “royal” lineage we should confer titles and bounties on them but they should at least be rehabilitated and helped in order to provide them decent living conditions.

Should we protest if the Indian government bans a porn website?

There is lots of talk going on these days about the Indian government coming down heavily on offensive and potentially “dangerous” websites. Up till now we have been reading about Internet censorship in countries like China, Pakistan and Iran, but such draconian measures are soon going to knock at our doors and we’ll be clueless if timely, counter measures are not taken.

Anyway, I was reading this blog on the banning of SavitaBhabhi.com, an Indian porn website, by the Indian government, under the IT act. According to an excerpt published in this ContentSutra update, N. Vijayaditya of the Controller of Certifying Authorities (a government agency under the Department of Information Technology)

There were several complaints against the site. We have taken action under the relevant sections of the IT Act and blocked the site.

The key here is “several complaints”. There might be 100s of, far worse porn websites in India, and they are operating openly, and the only difference is that people haven’t yet complained against them.

Does banning a porn website offend your freedom of expression?

I’m neither in favor of promoting porn nor against it. I’m not even neutral, in the sense that if you ask me right now to give a thumbs up or thumbs down to the porn Industry, it’ll be a thumbs down (and my opinion may change in the next 30 minutes) because after having visited every possible porn website in the world, it all seems quite boring (and most Indian “bhabhies” that are featured on these websites look like water buffaloes when they appear naked, and in fact some of them make you puke!).

Without going into the moral aspect, if porn is illegal then running a porn website is illegal too. I didn’t have much time to prob around; producing and distributing porn is illegal in India but accessing it is not. This is stupid because whenever there is demand, legal or illegal, supply is there. Although I’m 100% in favor of freedom of expression, if something is illegal, promoting it should also be. It’s like, rioting is illegal, and a website promoting people to indulge in rioting must be illegal too. The same goes for every illegal activity and its associated website.

When it comes to the Internet I think we’re overly emotional about “freedom of expression” and this in some way dents the credibility of the virtual world. Want to defend the right of porn website to operate? Fight to make porn legal in the country first. What do you think?

The Emergency was imposed this day in 1975

Alka drew my attention to this event and we noticed no news channel, accept for one unknown channel, is talking about it. Of course one of the reasons is that many prominent politicians in the current government were hand in glove with Indira and Sanjay Gandhi to unleash their diabolical schemes upon the country.

I have very little knowledge on this subject. I remember I was in Ambala with my grandparents, and besides, my knowledge of Indian social and political history is quite limited.

It was surprising to discover (through this WikiPedia link) that the firstmost opposition to the imposition of the emergency came from the Shiromani Akali Dal, and perhaps that’s why the Congress developed such a strong disliking for the Sikhs (the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, for example). In fact the opposition was so strong that Indira Gandhi feared it would lead to a nationwide movement and tried to strike a deal with Sant Harchand Singh Longowal. I think this must be the reason why Indira Gandhi sent Bhindrawale to Punjab — to factionalize the Akali Dal.

Why did Indira Gandhi impose the emergency? What were the circumstances then? Again, I haven’t done much reading, but according to various sources on the Internet, the Allahabad High Court had declared her election null and void. The major goofup was that while she was acquitted of serious charges she was found guilty on the charge of misuse of government machinery for her election campaign, something that every politician in this country does naturally. One thing lead to another and on her advise, the then president, Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed, declared the emergency.

Almost all opposition leaders were put behind bars. Journalists and editors were arrested and tortured. People were not allowed to protest. Some claim 100s of 1000s of people were operated upon forcibly to implement Sanjay Gandhi’s (I somehow agree with the drastic measure) birth control policy.

Anyway, if you have more information on this, please share it in the comment section and I will publish it here in the post.

The ritual of potty

Through this blog post I reached this page that refers to the “Manusmriti Vishnupuran” in order to throw some light upon the procedure of defecation. It says, before releasing your potty into the mortal world

  • Chant a mantra
  • Roll the sacred thread and put it on your right ear
  • Cover your head with a cloth and in the absence of cloth, cover it with your sacred thread

While you are defecating, don’t say anything (no wonder I’m constipated — I’m always singing). You can face north when you are defecating during day, and south when unleashing during night. Don’t face the sun, the fire, the moon, or the Brahmin (Why on earth would a Brahmin be in front of you while you defecate?)

Then there are various procedures for handling water and washing your linga (penis) and guda (anus). For instance, hold the water in your right hand and then using your left hand wash your linga once and guda three times. Then wash your left hand ten times and the right hand seven times. While washing you need to rub the earth (soil/dirth) to your linga and guda (this must be painful).

I’m sure all these procedures were defined to keep yourself and the environment around you clean and free of disease, especially during those days when you had to go out in the “jungle” (in fact in rural India people actually say, “Jungle jaa raha hoon” — going to the jungle) to ease yourself.

The only problem is the mantra. At times when you don’t even have enough time to lower your pants and position your butt properly, how the hell do you have time to chant a mantra? Just imagine, standing in your bathroom with your pants and undies down, holding your shirt up, using all your might to control your bowels, and chanting

Gachhantu Rishio Deva
Pishacha ye cha grihya ka
Pitrbhutagana surve
Karishye Malamochanam