Saturday, July 26, 2014

Their Bahu our Beti (we all love her)

.....Sania blamed patriarchy for BJP leader's sexist remark, saying "we live in an extremely male chauvinist society (and) unfortunately have to deal with this as women".....I have an Indian passport and am (still) playing for India''....."I do not know whether it happens in any other country where you have to keep proving that you are from that country. Is it because I am married to someone from another country? Is it because I am a woman?"....
There are many different layers of stupidity. You question some-one's nationality and patriotism, a person who has made India proud on the global stage. You harm relations between neighbors, working against the goals supposedly set by your own Leader. You insult women in general by implying that a bahu (daughter-in-law) will have to change her identity upon marriage.

But let us say all is fair in war (politics). You are advertising the fact that Telengana is a muslim-heavy state (historically the kingdom of Nizam) where you plan to capture votes by pitting the sons-of-soil (that magical word) against the invaders. The reason why Sania Mirza is an outsider is not because she was born in Bombay, but because her ancestors (men) came from Middle-East and Central Asia.

The effect of this (and the forcing chapati down the throat business) is that muslims will never consider voting for the BJP (reason #101). There will be no reconciliation between a party/organization that dreams of being the natural ruling party of India and the largest minority. That makes (politically) very little sense to us.

Now consider the fact that Sania Mirza has faced adversity off the court before as well...from muslims!!! Conservatives complained that she wears shorts (which infringes on modesty) and issued fatwas against women playing tennis (or presumably any sport). Sania of course faced down her opponents with grace and determination (just as she is doing now). BJP should be supporting Sania and (Muslim women in general) who would like to throw away the chains. These women can help provide backing for an Uniform Civil Code which is an important political plank for the BJP.

BJP rose to power on the back of Mandir politics. The slogan was "Garv se kaho hum Hindu hain" (say proudly that you are a Hindu). It is time to update the slogan as "Garv se kaho hum Bharat-vasi hain" (say with pride that we are Indians). It is the wise thing to do, it is also the right thing to do.
Indian tennis star Sania Mirza, a Muslim wed to a Pakistani cricketer, broke down in tears Friday after being described by a Hindu nationalist politician as “Pakistan's daughter-in-law” and unfit to be an Indian representative.
Mirza, 27, who is married to Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik, wiped away tears as she told India's NDTV network she was tired of continually being forced to defend her “Indianness”.

“I am a very patriotic person that is why I am so emotional right now,” Mirza, who wed Malik in 2010, said in the interview aired on television.

In comments reported earlier this week by local media, K. Laxman, a regional legislator belonging to the national ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), questioned the credentials of Mirza to be “brand ambassador” for the country's newest state Telengana in southern India.

Laxman was quoted as saying Mirza's marriage to Malik made her a “daughter-in-law” of Pakistan, India's Muslim neighbor and nuclear-armed rival with which the mainly Hindu but officially secular country has fought three wars.

Telangana, carved this year out of the state of Andhra Pradesh “is proud of Sania,” said in appointing her brand ambassador for the region.

Mirza grew up in the city of Hyderabad in what is now Telangana.

“Fans across the country don't think her Indianness has gotten mysteriously diluted,” because of her wedding to Malik, the Times of India said in an opinion-page piece.

Mirza, who has played for India at all major-level sporting events, has been defended by leaders across the political spectrum, including BJP members who said its party member's comment did not reflect its official stance.

Mirza earlier this month achieved a career-best rank of number five in the world when the new World Tennis Association doubles chart was released.

“After winning medals for India after I got married, (I) don't know why I have to keep justifying that I am Indian,” Mirza told NDTV.

The latest incident is seen as potentially further fanning concern among Muslims and other religious minorities over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist BJP government.

The controversy has erupted just days after some MPs from the Hindu right-wing Shiv Sena tried to forcibly feed a chapati – an Indian flatbread – to a Muslim restaurant manager fasting for Ramadan because they were unhappy about food at a government canteen.

The lawmakers belonging to Shiv Sena, a BJP ally, said they had not known the canteen supervisor was Muslim and they were complaining because the bread was so hard it “didn't even break”.





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