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The Indian Herald

The Indian Herald
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September 6, 2012

Why Teachers' Day not celebrated on pioneering educationist Savitri Bai Phule's birth anniversary?

Voices are growing in support of observing Teachers' Day on the birth anniversary of Savitribai Phule, the pioneering educationist and a crusader for women's education in India.

As Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan's birthday that falls on September 3 is observed as Teachers' Day, there is a demand from different quarters to celebrate her birthday also as Teachers' day. 

On social networking sites and online forums, there is a huge debate going on, as to why Savitri Bai's contribution is not regarded. There is another suggestion that her birth anniversary be observed as women's day.

Savitri Tai, who was the wife of leading reformer and anti-caste movement head, Mahatma Jyotiba Phule, was one of the most important figures in the history of modern India. She opened the first school for downtrodden girls in Maharashtra.

An accomplished poet, Savitri Phule, led mass movements for education and against upper caste hegemony in the era when lower caste were discriminated against openly and untouchability was widely prevalent across the country. 

Savitri Tai was born on January 3, 1831. She was the first women teacher of the first even girls' school opened in India in the British era. The school was opened in 1852. Her contribution in supporting her husband despite the fierce resistance of orthodox upper caste Hindus, is unparalleled.

The role of Savitribai in widow remarriage is too well-known. She took up responsibility of running Satyashodhak Samaj after her husband's death. On websites, Dalit intellectuals have now stirred a debate which is now entering mainstream discourse about according due status to Savita Phule and Mahatma Phule.

TIH Bureau




Raj Thackeray blames Biharis but himself a 'Bhaiya': Bal Thackeray's father belonged to Bihar, came from Magadh to settle in Maharashtra

This Marathi Manoos is also a Bhaiyya
Bal Thackeray's Shiv Sena has been known for its aggressive anti-Bihari stance but a book compiled by his father Prabodhan Thackeray shows that the family originally belongs to Bihar.

Prabodhan came to Madhya Pradesh in search of employment, briefly lived in Rajasthan, before going to Pune and subsequently making Mumbai their home.

This revelation can put Maharashtra Navanirmal Sena (MNS) leader Raj Thackery in spot, as he has been threatening Bihari migrants in Maharashtra.

The book titled 'Prabodhankar Thackeray Samagra Vangmay' was published with BJP-Shiv Sena alliance was in power and Manohar Joshi was chief minister. Not just Bal Thackeray but his son Uddhav and nephew Raj, have been attacking immigrants.

The book clearly says that Raj Thackeray's grandfather himself migrated to Maharashtra. He hailed from Magadh region. On page number 45, the entire history of Raj's ancestors is printed. None from the Thackeray clan has denied the revelations in the book.

Raj has been leading a violent campaign against people from UP and Bihar who are derogatorily termed as 'bhaiya' or 'bhayya'. Now it seems he can also be called a 'Bhaiya'. So when he terms Biharis as infiltrators, what Raj himself is?

TIH Bureau

September 1, 2012

Mass murderers BJP leader Maya Kodnani, ex-Bajrang Dal leader Babu Bajrangi get long jail terms for Naroda Patia massacre during Gujarat riots

Former BJP MLA and ex-minister Mayaben Kodnani, who was a staunch RSS activist, was sentenced to 28 years of rigorous imprisonment for leading the mob that killed 93 persons including women and children in Gujarat riots 2002.

In her landmark judgment, Justice Jyotsana Yagnik, sentenced Babu Bajrangi, the militant Hindutva leader who was earlier associated with Bajrang Dal, also to life term.

He would remain in jail till death. Riot victims and their families hailed the verdict, as the rioters finally got punished. Kodnani, a gynaecologist, was considered close to Chief Minister Narendra Modi, as well as former deputy prime minister and BJP leader Lal Kishenchand Advani.

Kodnani, whose family had migrated from Pakistan, after partition, had settled in Gujarat. The budding rabble-rouser for picked up by senior leaders because of her oratory. Due to substantial Sindhi population in her constituency, she was given ticket and was elected as legislator. She was even made minister and given the portfolio of Women and Child Welfare.

But the ghost of Gujarat carnage finally caught up. Supreme Court appointed SIT initiated probe and after indictment, she was forced to resign. She was arrested and after ten years of legal battle, the court finally sentenced her for 28 years.

Babu Bajrangi, the face of Hindutva movement in Gujarat, has also got punishment. Overall court gave its verdict and 31 persons were given lifer. Apart from Naroda Patiya, the judgments in some other important cases of violence against Muslims in Gujarat during the 2002 pogrom are awaited.

TIH Bureau

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