Syed Firdaus Ashraf/Rediff.com recalls his encounters with the late Gopinath Munde many years ago, when he was Maharashtra's home minister. Getting to travel in the same car as Gopinath Munde -- the then Maharashtra home minister and deputy chief minister -- was not an easy task for a young reporter like me way back in 1997. For one, I had no political contacts, and to make sense to Munde's secretary that I needed an interview with his boss for Rediff On The Net (as Rediff.com was then called) ... Rediff.com, 1 month ago
'Manto is the only writer to grasp what the project of Pakistan would eventually mean,' says Aakar Patel, who has translated a collection of Saadat Hasan Manto's essays in a just-released book Why I Write. One writer who took the Urdu language to its zenith is Saadat Hasan Manto. A brilliant story-teller, he wrote some of the greatest short stories in Urdu, especially about the Partition of India. Considered one of the subcontinent's finest writers, Manto reluctantly left India for Pakistan, ...Rediff.com, 2 weeks ago
'The real leader is not the one who builds flyovers and bridges. The real leader gets into the space of the human hearts which are at war and brings them together.' 'Gandhi did that. There cannot be a nation which is vibrant and strong where there is hatred which is tearing you apart,' filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt tells Syed Firdaus Ashraf/Rediff.com The choice of Narendra Modi as the Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate divided Bollywood. Such is the division that filmmaker Mahesh ...Rediff.com, 2 months ago
The realities at the nerve centre of the Ram Janambhoomi movement are lack of development, rampant unemployment and 12 hour-long power cuts. Most residents hope Narendra Modi will change the situation in Ayodhya. Syed Firdaus Ashraf/Rediff.com reports from the temple city. Badal Kumar Soni, 23, is busy attending to customers at his paan shop on the banks of the Sarayu river in Ayodhya. A poster of Narendra Modi in his shop makes it anybody's guess where his support lies in this election. "I am ...Rediff.com, 2 months ago 'If Modi comes to power, India will be divided into 20 parts' Rediff.com, 2 months ago
'Islam says the person who has been hurt has the right to pardon the accused. So don't ask me on whether I will pardon Narendra Modi or not. Go and ask this question to Gujarati Muslims who have been hurt.' 'Secular and non-secular is not an issue for Muslims. The day Muslims become strong, the non-secular guys will become secular. And if Muslims are weak, the same secular guys will cut the throats of Muslims.' 'The secular character of India can never be finished. India is secular by its ...Rediff.com, 2 months ago
'In every five-star hotel where the BJP is ruling, cow meat is sold. Narendra Modi isn't angry about these things...' 'Muslims are ready to go to this extent for the nation, just give us a chance. Do recognise our love for the country and don't call us traitors. It's an abuse to us.' 'They say people who do not support Modi must go to Pakistan. But what action is taken against people who propagate this?' 'The destruction of Muslims will destroy India. The progress of Muslims will make India a ...Rediff.com, 2 months ago
‘People of Ayodhya are in more trouble when political parties from outside hold a rally here. Nobody supplies any goods to Ayodhya fearing riots’. The realities at the nerve centre of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement are glaring with lack of development, rampant unemployment and 12-hour long power cuts making life miserable. And most of the people are hopeful that Narendra Modi will change the situation in Ayodhya. Syed Firdaus Ashraf speaks to some Ayodhya residents to get a hang of ...Rediff.com, 2 months ago
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