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21 November 2013

Narendra Modi and Ram Leela

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By Syed Ali Mujtaba

The RSS has created a new Ram for the Indians to worship. His hanuman is Amit Shah. The duo had staged one Ram Leela or rasleea, the skeletons of which is tumbling out of the cupboard, which they are finding it hard to keep back and shut the doors.

Those who are not familiar with this story, let me put this in perspective. A young lady called Mansi Soni, befriended Gujarat Chief Minister and she was snooped by his acquaintance, the reasons of it is shrouded in mystery.

Ms. Soni hails from Bangalore and was selected as the landscape architect for the development of Bhuj city in the Kutch district of Gujarat. It’s since then she came in proximity with the Gujarat Chief Minister and the story begins.

It appears that one Pradeep Sharma who was once collector of Kutch district and now victimized by the Gujarat Government has filed a petition in the court alleging that Ms Soni had developed intimate relations with Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

The fact of the intimacy is confirmed by the petitioner who saw them in close proximity and overheard their conversation during one of the official functions.

Subsequently, according to Pradeep Sharma, Ms. Soni confide to him that when she called Modi in his office, he would freely interrupt scheduled meetings, walking out of his office in order to speak to her privately……

One may believe this story or not but the fact remains that it has been submitted to the court and let it cast it judgement on it.

How does this connected with the surveillance issue that is hogging limelight now? Well the lady in question is none other but Ms Soni, mentioned in Pradeep Sharma’s petition. The stalking incident actually took place in August-September 2009, when Amit Shah was holding junior Home Minster’s portfolio of Gujarat.

A sting operation jointly conducted by two media outlet has produced audio tapes that reveal that the illegal surveillance of Ms Soni was ordered by Amit Shah at the behest of his ‘Saheb’ Narendra Modi.

The Anti-Terrorist Squad of Gujarat carried out month long minute to minute tracking, surveillance, stalking and phone tapping of this young lady.

The orders given by Amit Shah clearly come out from recorded conversations captured in the audio tapes that are submitted to the court handling Ishrat Jhan encounter case.

Prima facie facts that emerge out is that Narendra Modi through Amit Shah did order and carry out the most brazen, unauthorized and illegal stalking activity in the country.

Why did he do so? What was the motive behind it? The nation is seeking answers to it ever since this story broke out. This is more so because the common man want to know the motive before making choice for the Prime Minister of the country.

The BJP line of defence is this was done to ‘give protection to the girl,’ but this argument needs scrutiny. First of all why protection was need at all, from whom the girl felt threats? Even if we buy the protection argument, then a police jeep could have been sufficient for security, what was the need for stalking and that too for more than a month?

The father of the girl has come out with a statement that his daughter does not wish for an investigation into the politically charged controversy and has claimed that the surveillance was mounted on her with her consent.

There are two threads to this argument, one desisting from an investigation, and other to take on the blame. Both arguments seems to be of dubious and do not live up to the test of reasons.

The third argument is built by Madhu Kishwar, one time feminist writer, now doing public relations for Narendra Modi, calling Ms Soni a terrorist. She justifies the stalking that was done to check her credentials.

Well can terrorist be a landscape architect, who goes through the rigmarole of competing through open tender and wins the contract of Bhuj city’s beautification. Suppose, if she was not selected for the project, then was she still stalked?

This brings us to the last motive and that is Ram Leela or Rasleela of Narendra Modi. The 63 year old bachelor has gained notoriety for making livid comments on women. He had called Sonia Gandhi ‘Burhia’ (old lady) and Shashi Tharoor's wife, a 'Rs 50 cr girlfriend.' Even though unrelated, these comments point figures and his character. The Prime Minister in waiting has to come clean on the “character dhela hai” apprehension of the people of this country.

This episode also reflects the style of functioning of Narendra Modi. He is known for taking decisions that has resulted in post Godhara riots and fake encounters. Can India be handed over to someone who goes by his whims and fancies to run the administration of his state?

There is more than what the eyes can read in this story. The truth about this chilling instance of state-sponsored stalking must be known. The audio tapes clearly prove that illegal state sponsored surveillance of a young female had taken place. If that’s the case, then the stalkers, who are now equated with the rapist, in this case would find its place in the same category? If proven guilty what would be the quantum of their punishment?

It’s high time that the conspiracy of silence in this case should be broken. The patriarchal defence do not hold ground in such a case. The adult woman or the man in the dock should make the motives clear and bring the real truth in public domain. If they cannot do so, then an independent inquiry should be ordered to unravel the mysteries surrounding it.

[Syed Ali Mujtaba is a Journalist based in Chennai. He can be contacted at syedalimujtaba@yahoo.com]

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