Why does Government push Hajj subsidy down the throats of Indian muslims?

 

Its time for Hajj and Hajj subsidy is again in news .All these years,I have been deluded to think that Hajj Subsidy is a great privilege or discount from the government..Further reading into this a few days ago,made me really shocked to know that this is merely a political gimmick and that the real drama behind this ‘subsidy’ is all about vote-bank and about securing money to AirIndia..

 

Before we go further into the drama-script, a few reminders..

 

Muslims want Haj subsidies scrapped

 The clamour among Indian Muslims to abolish the Hajj subsidy is getting stronger. Several Muslim organisations are now pleading that India adopt the Malaysian model of Tabung Haji because the subsidy has “harmed” the community more than it has benefited them. Imam Ahmed Bukhari of Delhi’s Jama Masjid submitted a memorandum to the PM, demanding the Haj Act be amended to end Air India’s monopoly. To scrap the subsidy, they have cited the Quran, which says Haj is compulsory for only those who can afford it. 

‘Haj subsidy unIslamic, use that money on our education, health’

 Several Muslim intellectuals, religious scholars and leaders are suggesting that the Government scrap the Haj subsidy and spend the money instead on schools, healthcare and other basic infrastructure for the welfare of the community. Some even describe the subsidy as “vote-bank politics” and say it’s unIslamic to undertake any obligation during Haj. S Q R Ilyas, convenor of the Babri Masjid Committee and a senior member of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), call the Hajj subsidy “a sop to gain political mileage. “There is no doubt that it is unIslamic and one should not be under any obligation while undertaking Haj. But we want travel to be made an open competition. We should be allowed to place bulk orders with the airline which quotes the lowest price for a ticket. As of now, we are bound by the Government to travel by Air India.” Mufti Nazeer-ud-Din, who runs Kashmir’s biggest seminary, echoes “We should be allowed have a separate institution to regulate Haj with very little influence from the Government. The Centre should channelise the subsidy amount for the welfare of Muslims.”  He also demanded global tenders for Haj flights “to make the pilgrimage cheaper” rather than being “monopolised by Air India.”…

 

 

Party Vice-President Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had, in fact, slammed the subsidies as the “biggest fraud on the country” and said it was being done to make up for the huge losses incurred by the Air India. Observers recall how the Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal and the then Saudi Ambassador to India A. Rahman N. Alohaly had told an Indian delegation led by the then External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh that any state subsidy for Haj pilgrimage is wrong.“Our ulemas will help you in explaining to your people that the subsidy goes against the spirit of the Shariat,” Al-Faisal himself had stated.”

 

 

Haj subsidy was introduced in the 70’s to provide a temporary cushion against a sudden increase in airfares following the fuel price hike.Earlier,pilgrims went by ship and later,sea travel was stopped and consequently,government subsidized the huge difference in expense between travel by sea and air.Later on,subsidies were increased as to compensate hike in accommodation and flight ticket charges..And now it has harmed the Indian muslim community more badly than the intended goodness.

 

 

Refer to one instance when The Haj Committee of Uttar Pradesh has decided to change its loyalties from Air India to Saudi Airlines for sending pilgrims to Jeddah, due to the step-motherly treatment meted out to the Hajis. With nearly 30,000 pilgrims undertaking Haj pilgrimage every year from the state, the decision is likely to cause a revenue loss of around Rs 50 crore to Air India. In short,it is making, huge profits by one way and returning part of the profit in a more attractively palatable way to Muslims maintain the vote bank. More than one lac Muslims in the country go for Haj pilgrimage every year and most of them are poor, who keep aside their savings of whole life only for Haj.  Air India charges arbitrary fares from the Hajj pilgrims.  Today, we get more than 50 percent rebate in Airfares on domestic and international air-routes, when we book a air ticket in advance by three months.  But Air India is charging more fare from the Haj pilgrims even when they deposite the air fare in advance by one year with the Haj Committee. Let there be open international tenders for air lines to carry Haj Pilgrims in which case we can totally remove the subsidy, at the same time abolish all subsidies to every community in India under the banner of true secularism. If an independent audit is done they will perhaps discover that the govt airlines were making loss on all international sectors except the Gulf. This is very unfortunate considering that most of the people working in Gulf are quite poor even after their immigrant salaries.

 

 

Away from religious interpretations, secular principles and political analysis, there is also a financial aspect which makes the Hajj subsidies a butt of ridicule. Notwithstanding the subsidy, an intending Indian pilgrim still has to put together at least Rs 65,000-Rs 70,000 for Hajj. By what logic can anyone argue that a person who can afford Rs 60,000-Rs 70,000 is incapable of raising few more thousands, which constitute the subsidy?

 

 

What’s more, today, there are hundreds of tour operators who offer an all-inclusive Hajj tour package for the same amount without any subsidies whatsoever, and also earn a profit. Hajj Subsidy was given to those traveling through Hajj Committee. Every year Haj Committee sends around 60 to 70 thousand Indians to Hajj. Hajj Committee (by law) is forced to purchase these 60 to 70 thousand air tickets from Air India only.The Hajj subsidy was on these air ticket prices and hence was nothing but a discount on bulk air ticket purchases. But for political reasons it was given a name as a Subsidy and hence was meant to look like a favor on Indian Muslims.

  

 

The Hajj committee too needs to be reengineered.. We have lot of cozy fellows eating out poor man’s and government’s money.Maybe a transparent system of selection the committee members could be established..Recall a case against Hajj committee for fraud According to M Yunus, general secretary of the Tanzeem, “A return ticket to Jeddah costs Rs 21,000. But the Civil Aviation ministry, which booked the hajis on Air India charged them Rs 32,606. Of this, Rs 20,606 came from the Haj subsidy, the government provides. The ministry thus made a neat Rs 33 crore on 70,236 tickets it issued last year.’’. According to Rana Siddiqui, the petitioner’s lawyer, the Haj Committee also made Rs 28 crore on the foreign exchange it gives pilgrims.

 

 

 

Lastly,I feel odd when I hear people ranting “Muslims doing pilgrimage at Hindu’s money”..I didn’t know that muslims in India don’t pay tax…Also,I wonder why BJP didn’t bother to stop this ‘appeasement’ when they were in power..Bottom line is,every political party is keen on keeping the matter alive so that this ‘subsidy’ remains a never ending bash..I request all of you to see for yourself what is the intention behind all this..

 

 

 

I request all fellow indian muslims to grab this opportunity to bring an end to this drama..

 

 

Read an article from timeofindia..

 

Unless one is particularly predisposed against Muslims, any discussion on Haj subsidy should be done after considering whether the State has adhered to this secular credo.

 

Pursuing the philosophy of sarva dharma sambhav, the government has been investing resources on supporting the religious practices of all communities. For example, everytime Kumbh Mela is held, the State builds infrastructure for the pilgrims.

 

It organises Amarnath and Mansarovar yatras. And doles out compensation for pilgrims who lose their life during pilgrimage. The railways run Tirth Yatra specials to take pilgrims to different dhams. During Chhat Puja, munic-ipal authorities in Bihar clean up water bodies for people to take a dip.

 

Trains run from different parts to take kawariyas for a holy dip at Devgarh. Every year, the government creates facilities for Ramlila. The district magistrate — a representative of the secular State — fires the arrow to set Ravana’s effigy ablaze.

 

All this is done at a great cost to the exchequer. Except for the Sikhs, and to some extent Jains, whose own religious bodies spend on the processions they take out to commemorate anniversaries of gurus, all other communities depend on the government to support their pilgrimages and festivities.

 

Curiously no objection is raised against them. No one questions when the government doles out huge amounts for the creation of infrastructure for Kumbh Melas. Nor is any hullabaloo raised when it announces compensation for dead pilgrims.

 

In comparison, a lot of noise is raised against the Haj subsidy, which is actually a subsidy to Air India rather than to the Muslim pilgrims per se. It seems as if in this country Muslims have no claim over State resources.

 

After all, they are equal citizens of India. Indeed, some people do see Muslims as lesser citizens, so they want the Haj subsidy to go. Such squint-eyed vision has no place in a secular state.

 

As long as the State continues to act on the premise that it is its business to be involved in the religious affairs of its citizens, withdrawal of the subsidy would seriously compromise its secular credentials.

 

Until the government withdraws completely from religious realm and leaves the communities to foot the bill for their own activities, Muslims are as much entitled to favoured treatment as others.

 

P.S:

Read more

A report released by Press Information Bureau in December 2006

Haj Subsidy, Anyone?

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  1. Nimmy if you ask me, government and politicians should have nothing to do with our religions. If possible they should be forbidden from using ‘religious/regional/caste identity’ as an election issue.

    Hi IHM,Thanks for the comment,but I don’t agree to it..It is not feasible in India to seperate religion completely from the state..We ahve 100’s of religious functions,especially for Hindus and being an Indian,I do feel that government should provide for them..Afterall,majority of indians are poor people and they can’t afford it all by themselves..I was just reading a report on government spending 8 million dollar for Kumbha Mela during 1989..I was shocked to see the amount of money involved,but then agiain,I was gald that it helped 10,000’s of people and moreover,it is much less money spent on secuity for bloody politicians and holy cricketers..I’ll have a post of that later and tear apart the shitty hypocracy of some people who are against hajj subsidy but not bothered about 34327534 times moremoney spent on so callled VIPs and cricketers..Oh yeah,I don’t agree that their lives are sooooooo special as to maintianed by spending lot of tax..But anyways,I appreciate your thought ,but i am afraid it is not a practical and ideal situation..Do share your thoughts.. -Nimmy..

  2. Hi Nimmy,

    I think I provoked you write this blog 🙂 ..Any way good

    I agree to you that Haj subsidy should be removed,so should be compensation for pilgrims who lose their life during Kumbh Mela and others, so should be subsidy for building churches (in some states).

    But I feel the content in your blog(and some of the sources you quoted) is far from truth.You were trying to portray Haj subsidy as a gimmick and actually no the money going to Hajis but to Air India’s pocket.

    The truth is money is going to Air India’s as well as the pilgrims.According to you
    “A return ticket to Jeddah costs Rs 21,000. But the Civil Aviation ministry, which booked the hajis on Air India charged them Rs 32,606. Of this, Rs 20,606 came from the Haj subsidy, the government provides. ’’.
    From the above statement itself the truth is pretty clear.For each pilgrim the net subsidy is Rs.9000.That comes to 63 crore of tax payers money.

    Again you have quoted some of the sources in this blog. It was completely one sided.You were saying so many Muslim organization and eminent person calling for the removal of Haj subsidy.But you conveniently turned a blind eye to the outcry by the majority of Muslim organizations at those instances against those stmts.

    But on a broader perspective I completely agree with you that appeasement politics should give way to real secular politics.

    Hi Arjun,Thanks for your comment..But I feel odd at the way you look at it..this is a long post and i think i covered almost all aspects,still you poke at me telling” It was completely one sided”..Afterall,all I said was positive and secularist isn’t it..So why are you bothered that I didn’t speak the negative side..You remind me of some people who quote a bunch of war verses from Quran,no mater how better one protrays the positive side..Sad,very sad that some people are so particular to put down people..And oh yes,there isn’t much to be irritataed bcoz afterall,its petty 63 or even 80 crores of ruppes..What about this single event alone..

    There is some information available on the tab for massive Hindu fairs, although much of this spending is merely labelled as ‘infrastructure development’. The grounds of the gargantuan 12-yearly Allahabad Maha Kumbh, for instance, are spread over 1500 hectares. During the last Kumbh Mela, in 2001, the site boasted 12,000 taps, capable of supplying 50.4 million litres of water; 450 kilometres of electric lines and 15,000 streetlights in place; 70,000 toilets; and 7100 sweepers to clean up the mess generated by an estimated five million devotees. There were also 11 post offices and 3000 temporary phone connections, while 4000 buses and five trains were also requisitioned for the mela period. At its peak, the mela administration had more than 80 officials working full time. The budget for all of this was INR 1.2 billion – INR 800 million from the state government, and INR 400 million from the Centre. This did not include the costs of deploying around 11,000 policemen, as well as 40 companies of the Provincial Armed Constabulary and other paramilitary forces. The Uttar Pradesh government has spent Rs 990,000,000 on constructing the necessary infrastructure, including some 200 shops and mobile stores that will provide fair priced goods.

    So,why isn’t any hindu ashamed to use muslim money to do thier pilgrimage?I am ahsamed of myself making such lame and hatred arguments..

    See Arjun,India is a great country where we live and let live..Take away Hajj subsidy,holy crap of appeasement..But simply for the sake of argument, don’t talk against government spending on hindu pilgrimages bcoz even being a non hindu i really feel bad for the condition of insanitation and all in places like Shabarimala..Hajj pilgrimis pay around 1,00,000 rupee and for them it is not a big deal to put in 10,000 or 15,000 more if subsidy is stopped..But for those people who go to Sabarimala and Amarnarth, and like places,to them the money given by governemtn helps lot i guess..

    Now again,for the sake of argument you may say that 1.2 billion ruppee spent on Kumbha Mela alone is not any subsidy,but infrasturctre and like..Well,to Hajj pilgrims,they can’t go by road,so that governement gets a chance to provide for infrasturcture of buliding roads from bombay to saudi..Governement don’t have a chance to spent on drinking water and sanitation issues for its owns citizens..and hence govnt gives some money on each person as to provide for their infrasturcture ,their travel and their accomodation ..What is it so appeasement and anti secular in this..I am a dumb person,so pls inform me if i am wrong..

    Also,I request you to explain what is the ‘far from truth sources’ that i quoted..If you have isses with hindustantimes and indianexpress,pls write to the editor ..You cannot simply make such accusitions and portray me as a ‘one sided -far-from-truth ‘ person..I have given all sources and still if you feel so,I can’t help it..

    Finally,

    But on a broader perspective I completely agree with you that appeasement politics should give way to real secular politics.

    I’ld like to know what is the kind of secular politics you really intented..Governemnt staying out of all religous functions and boards ?Do you also imply that there isn’t a need for addressing the security concerns in an event where 60 million people participate?The money spent on police and secuirty issues alone will come to about many times more than hajj appeasement.. I am for government taking care of all this,but hell i don’t want hajj subdidy appesement.. -Nimmy

    • Milind Kher
    • October 30th, 2008

    Religion is strictly a private affair, and should be treated as such. The Government should realy not interfere.

    Whenever it does things like providing Haj subsidy etc, it lands up alienating the Hindus etc. This really does not help anybody.

    All that is required is to provide Muslims an environment where they can live as equals with others. Nothing more. Nothing less.

    Hi Milind…Religion is a personal business,but in a country like ours it is not so and instead of turing a blind eye,i think we should face it and deal with it wisely..

    Whenever it does things like providing Haj subsidy etc, it lands up alienating the Hindus etc

    Agreed,but why is it so..Which hindu who takes billions of taxmoney,including mine and yours have the right to point fingers at hajj subsidy uh? Afterall,hajj pilgrims are leeching less..

    All that is required is to provide Muslims an environment where they can live as equals with others.

    Very true,but there are some muslims out there who think they deserve special privileges..Its high time muslims get out of minority mentality..We have as much rights on this soil as sicko Raj thackeray or anybody else has..Anybody who says to plunge all indian muslims in Arabian sea or dumb to Pakistan,should be locked in dark room and keys thrown away in deep sea… -Nimmy

    • Nimmy
    • October 30th, 2008

    And finally to all champions of appeasment,hajj subsidy is not a matter of money..80 crores is peanuts when compared to that going into pockets of politicians or for security in saving ‘special’ lives of cricketers and like..

    Government will not spent money simply like that..When they give hajj subsidy,they want pilgrims to travel by their airplane-airindia .Thereby making a business and thus profit..Its the same everywhere..When goverment spends on Sabarimala or Kumba mela,govt gets much money in return as business rolled out during the event..Its simple-Give and Take..It benefits both parties..Some hot headed crap people made this an issue..If government were to stop all this ‘appeasement’,thousands of people will lose thier job and I’ld like to know if the secularists will provide for those people’s families?

    I used many bad words while commenting..I am really sorry,but i am sick of reading this in so many blogs and newspapers and articles..I hope atleast a few people get my point..Why can’t we live and let live…?

    Read government’s affidavit on regarding the case on Supreme court..Its more about forigen policy and good will..Now pls don’t tell me that India doesn’t need all this and can stand on its own..

    The government defended the financial assistance to such pilgrims saying: “The Haj pilgrimage has certain foreign relations and foreign policy aspects. It is important to note that the Haj is taking place in a foreign country, Saudi Arabia, which is an Islamic country.”

    “India has one of the largest Muslim populations in the world, next only to Indonesia, and friendship and better relations within the comity of nations, including Arab countries, is an aspect of international relations and foreign policy,” the government said.

    “Taking into account various factors, which go into promoting better relations, the government has thought it fit that Muslim brothers from weaker sections too get the advantage of performing the Haj,” said the government.

    “Moreover, Indian Muslims performing the Haj promote international goodwill and understanding,” it said in its affidavit.

    Opposing Goradia’s plea to scarp the Haj subsidy, the government said: “It is important to note that the amount of subsidy is allocated in the Union Budget. The court ought not interfere with budgetary allocation made by Parliament after due consideration of all relevant issues.”

    In its affidavit, the government submitted to the court that its act of granting subsidy to Muslim pilgrims as also to pilgrims of other religions is not a sectarian but a secular activity.

    “The government is only facilitating the Indian citizens to go on pilgrimage. It is submitted that the facilitating activities undertaken by the government can never be termed as the process to acquire a particular religious character by the government and basic features of secularism is not at all impeded by the such activities,” said the government, refuting Goradia’s allegation that providing subsidy to Haj pilgrims was a non-secular function of the government.

  3. interesting how the simplest of things are given a political twist.

    Just a small query why cant those going on Hajj just boycott this silly subsidy and Hajj Committee and books tickets the way we normally do for travelling anywhere whether on business or pleasure?

    Hi Pinku,I’ll try to share what I am aware of.Many be readers will add more thoughts..

    Because of the limitation of space in Mina and Arafat, the Government of Saudi Arabia in consultation with the Ulema, has set a general limit of one pilgrim for a population unit of 1000 on all countries. The Muslim population of India is estimated at 150 million, which generates a quota of 150,000..This quota is allotted by government to private sector..For eg,1,00,000 is allocated to governemtn hajj committe and rest 50,000 is given to private parties,ie,not individuals,but for those travel agencies who have permit to take pilgrims..Hajj travel is not a tourism or just a forigen visit and since i guess there are security concersn,Saudi allowes only legitmate pilgrims.Plainly,I cannot take a visa and just travle to Mecca on my own,I need to do it through governemt bcoz Hajj visas are allocated to India governemnt by SAudi government..So,india government decides what to do with this quota..

    Pinku, practically ,this government quota is grabbed and allotted by beurocracies to elite class of people ,and to some politicians who never pray even 5 times a day..The VIPs have a chnace for FREE travel every year..Holy crap,I wish those VIPs like E Ahmed and Samadani,who grap quota every year, get drowned in sea and instead,poor people may get that chance of doing Hajj once a lifetime..

    So be short,we cannot do Hajj travle on our own visa or ticket bcoz it is all about governments on both sides..since there is less private quota,people who don’t get ticket in that sector,automatically apply for government quota..Hope you get some idea..

    Read this article,you will get a basic idea,though it is anews article about need to reenggieer state quotas..
    http://www.indianmuslims.info/news/2008/jun/13/distribute_indian_quota_150_000_hajis_among_states_uts_syed_shahabuddin.html

    -Nimmy

  4. Hm..Its after a long time I was able to provoke you .. Good. 🙂

    Regarding the Kumbh Mela, I am not aware of the facts and where the money comes from…But you also also mentioned about Sabarimala. Government is not spending a single penny for Sabarimala or any other temple in Kerala from taxpayers money.Government is not even spending 15% of the revenue its getting from the temples for its infrastructure development. In kerala all the revenue from temples are going to deveswan board run by government.The revenue from Sabarimala alone is believed to be more than 100cr.I will be more than happy if atleast 50% of the revenue is used for infrastructure development. Its same in most of the other states.I am not sure how it happens in UP.So no comments on Kumbh mela.

    “Also,I request you to explain what is the ‘far from truth sources’ that i quoted..If you have isses with hindustantimes and indianexpress,pls write to the editor .”

    I dont have any issues with both those news papers 🙂 .
    They usually give both sides of coin through various articles. But u just took the part which u wanted to highlight.Even I dont have problem with that.But definitely have the right to disagree 🙂

    And I dont want the government to keep away from religious things but I dont want taxpayers money to be used for that.It shud be the revenue from the respective places that is used for providing facilities.


    Hi Arjun ,

    So,you changed your stand of I completely agree with you that appeasement politics should give way to real secular politics to And I dont want the government to keep away from religious things but I dont want taxpayers money to be used for that“..Fine,does that statement imply that all provisions except Hajj subsidy should go?Please make your view clear..

    Government is not spending a single penny for Sabarimala

    I see this statement as the biggest ignorant joke of the millenium..Sorry,no offense meant,but please do some research before making such solid statements..

    But u just took the part which u wanted to highlight.

    Lol..I highlighted the positive parts,didn’t I ?But you still keep on insisting that the ‘other side’ is worth mentioning..How pessimistic 😉

    Even I dont have problem with that.But definitely have the right to disagree

    Lol..why do you want to disagree simply for the sake of arguing 🙂 Why is it hard to agree with positive stuff..Afterall,I quoted a conservative Imam asking to abolish Hajj subsidy.Isn’t that really progressive and positive?Then why can’t you applaud it? Whatz stopping you? And Yes of course,I do respect all opinions,and thatz why all comments posted by readers are posted on board.Well,isn’t that how we learn more and more..Afterall,I don’t claim to be RIGHT.I am just trying not to be WRONG..

    ..but I dont want taxpayers money to be used for that

    And yes,even after reading the post and all my comments,if you still strongly belive that money spent on Hajj pilgrims is just ‘taxpayer’s money down the drain”,and there isn’t any benefit or return,sorry I am not bothered to convince you..I can’t keep on repeating ,but I am just sad that all my effort is down the drain and you just missed the whole point.Try reading again with an unbiased mindset..
    Good day

  5. assalamu `alaykum wa rahmautllah
    Mabruk, an excellent piece and an eye-opener for me. I did not realise the depth and complexity of this issue. Thank you for an informing read, sister.

    Thanks for your words sister -Nimmy

  6. Nimmy,

    I haven’t changed any of my stand in this case.

    “I completely agree with you that appeasement politics should give way to real secular politics to And I dont want the government to keep away from religious things but I dont want taxpayers money to be used for that“

    Both statements imply the same thing, I cant see any difference.

    To be more explanatory, I want government to provide security to the pilgrimages, but it should not be taxpayers money. That means the organising body(in case of Hindu temple the devaswam board) of the particular religion should fund the expenses.Hope you got it.

    Now regarding the government spending on Sabarimala.
    Revenue got to the government through Sabarimala Devaswam board : In 2007 its 72 crore.Its estimated to be 95 crores in 2008.

    Total estimated spending in 2008(As per 2007 plan)
    3MCD sewage plant at Sabarimala at Rs 2.40 crore
    1.5 MCD sewage plant at Pampa costing Rs 1.20 crore; Sewage collection tank at Sabarimala and Pampa at Rs 1.94 crore; 300 latrines at Pampa, 400 latrines and 100 bath rooms at Sabarimala at Rs 2.3 crore; solid waste treatment plant at Rs 2.5 crore; Drainages at Rs 1.3 crore and mobile latrines at a cost of Rs 1.4 crore .

    The total cost of the projects is estimated at Rs 16.16 crore including provision for cost escalation.

    Ok lets put 10 crores extra for other things like security and all, fine.
    Now total spending by government on Sabarimala : 26 crores – 95 crores = – 69 crores .That means government hasnt spend a single peeny but has got 69 crores profit from Sabarimala. Oh..I forgot , one more source of income. KSRTC is charging double the normal charge for Sabarimala buses.(Reason told : high range charge , and poor road quality charge)

    “But u just took the part which u wanted to highlight.”

    Yes its always there in all the blogs whether mine or yours.I will quote the eg:
    “Observers recall how the Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal and the then Saudi Ambassador to India A. Rahman N. Alohaly had told an Indian delegation led by the then External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh that any state subsidy for Haj pilgrimage is wrong.”
    Fine I still remember that incident.But you didnt seem to write about the strong opposition that came for these stmts at that time.

    “Try reading again with an unbiased mindset..”

    I completely read this with an unbiased mindset.And I said
    “But on a broader perspective I completely agree with you that appeasement politics should give way to real secular politics.”

    Now dont expect everyone to take what you write.People do have different views, but repeat I fully agree with you that appeasement politics has to give way to good secular politics.

    Arjun,I don’t intend to argue endlessly..but sorry,I don’t understand why is it difficult to agree or disagree when it is about facts..Of course i never impose my ideas when it comes to politics,religion or like subjects..But here,I am talkign about facts,and if my fact is right,I find it odd when people are reluctant to accept facts(again i am talking about facts and not opinions)..Forget it,you are free to belive what you feel right.

    I am trying to get more authentic data on Sabarimala,bcoz i am sure that state government is spending 30% or more in Pamba project alone..Government doens’t bring money form its wife’s house,I guess…Also,you point about KSRTC taking double fare charge..In case you don’t know,AirIndia charges many times extra for Hajj travel bcoz its a one side journey..Again,pls give me some time i am trying to make use of Right to information service..

    And to conclude, the detailed cost report you gave,thanks..And just a single question,Do you imply that Hajj Pilgrims TAKE and don’t GIVE anythign in return..Let us be clear on that stand,because otherwise,we are just playing hide and seek..If possible,i’ld like to know to know your stand on “Are Hajj pilgrims leeching out government ,oops taxpayer’s, money and not giving anything in return,including the profit,oops i am not permitted to use that word, to AirIndia, and whatever points i reffered to in the quoted governemnt affidavit..Without agreeing on that point,there is no use in further discussion..

    I don’t mean to be rude..I am bit stressed..I apologize in case i hurt you anyway.. -Nimmy

    • Milind Kher
    • October 31st, 2008

    There are many measures that the government takes where it is perceived by others that a big favor is being done to Muslims. however, many of these are nominal, and the only purpose that they serve is to excite others against Muslims.

    The goivernment has given Muslims no quotas, there is no poverty eradication for them, no special housing provided or anything to indicate that they are being appeased.

    Muslim appeasement is a myth perpetuated by the saffron brigade

  7. Nimmy, I cannot understand your stand. In my first comment itself I agreed to your blog on many things.Please dont expect everyone to take your words without asking anything or retorting. I also agreed with you about the Air Indias profit from Haj pilgrimage.
    “profit,oops i am not permitted to use that word, to AirIndia, and whatever points i reffered to in the quoted governemnt affidavit..Without agreeing on that point,there is no use in further discussion..”

    Still you say I am not agreeing to that point.Fine either you are not reading my comments properly or you have a problem understanding it.

    Again regarding the Sabarimala, you are free to bring up new facts and figures. Anyway I have a new post on Sabarimala.May be a slightly controversial one 🙂
    http://arjun2k.wordpress.com/2008/11/01/makarajyothi-and-makaravilakku-a-hoax-or-divine-miracle/

    Forget everything 🙂 -Nimmy

    • manoj
    • November 2nd, 2008

    ethically muslims should disown the hajj subsidy. arithmetic should not be the criteria. there are discrepancies in air fares in india, which is known to travellers to middle east.

    it is known to everyone that makaravilakku is manmade. even govt and devaswam board admitted it.

    20 plus years back athiests have made mock makaravilakku in shabarimala.

    True..Whatever,If our hindu brothers and sisters are so worried about this hajj subsidy,why not forgo it for their sake and communal harmony -Nimmy

  8. Nimmy, I agree that the money needs to be spent on other benefits but I am not sure what will happen if the subsidy is removed. There may be people who object and even if it is a small group there will be trouble. In India today there is no consensus on anything!

    So true,so sad..Our nation is so messed up 😦 -Nimmy

    • ajax
    • November 5th, 2008

    “Great,now we have to debate on this,
    Now is there any islamic country which gives subsidies to its folk for their hajj trip???No,there isn’t.Is there any islamic country which does provide subsidy to any other religions?-Again it’s an emphatic NO.So that means we are the only country in the world to do so.
    Now the matter of the money-There are specific teminals in operation only for the Hajj duration of 2 months and after which it is shut down for the rest of the year.That is a drain of money don’t you think so-a separate terminal for you dudes for 2 months in a year.
    And kumbh mela is held 4 times every 12 years therefore it is not as much a drain as is renovating and having an entire terminal for you every year..
    The total subsidy for Haj 2005 came around to Rs. 165.77 crores and must have gone up by now….so you said a small part of the ticket i think…..compared to 120 crores every 3 years…..
    And it’s only because it is in the country that it is so high that’s why we have to organise security and etc etc etc.Had it been outside the country it would have been cheaper with the pseudo-secularists heading the govts…

    So you said something???Please do respond.
    Do you know the price to go for a Kailash Manasarover trip- Around Rs 1 Lakh ,it is comparable to your hajj trip,only people who can go there can go and the conditions are even more trying and difficult..No subsidy is given other than a blanket by the CM and a box of dry fruits to about 80 people which is less than Rs.10 lakh.Which they all pay as tax payers anyway being well off.So in a way they do finance their travel.Now Amarnath-what facilities are there-A toilet in a tent and very rarely a pucca one with all development stopped.and the road—-there is no road it’s a kachcha pathnot a pucca one and the minimum cost is Rs.10,000 with no subsidies maybe a complimentary rudraksha or so but nothing more.And then kumbh mela i’ve already drawn a comparison—what else is there???

    As for the govt. affidavit -learn not to trust them(atleast i learnt that) after the Ram Setu episode”

    And as for the teerth yatra specials-the govt. is earning more money as tickets than it is spending…(i shld know after all my closest relative is in the Railway Board as the Anti Corruption HOD)

    Hi Ajax,sorry for being late to reply..I was so busy and i didn’t want to reply to you in haste ,but in detail..But Time constraints are stopping me from doing the same..I hope you understand..

    I agree with you..Please take some steps to stop this hajj subsidy..I don’t wanna argue,but your last statements tells it all..

    the govt. is earning more money as tickets than it is spending

    everything is just a give and take policy..Same goes for spending on hindu or muslims or christian festivals/pilgrimages..I hope you get the point..

    Good day..do visit againa nd comment on other posts..-Nimmy

    • abuabdulrahman
    • November 7th, 2008

    Haj Subsidy ?

    Are state or central governments allocates any budget for Haj subsidy ? not at all !

    Than how muslims are benefitted with that subsidy ?

    Air India and Indian Airlines are receiving discounts from gulf airports to operate haj flights, part of the money were returning to hajis as subsidy that is haj subsidy !


    Hi abuabdulrahman,sorry for being late to reply..Welcome to my blog..

    I am not very sure if government aloocates money in budget or not..And your point on Airindia receiving discount is true..but hell,why do these hindus amke a dramam out of it..In that case,it is better for muslism to ask governemnt to abolish this holy subsidy,and instead ask governemnt to open the market for all international flights..that makes sense..But here,people want tostop holy subsidy,but can’t open air market either..How hypocritical.. -Nimmy

    • Milind Kher
    • November 9th, 2008

    The Hajj subsidy is not required. By giving it, the government is only antagonizing the Non Muslims who do not get similar priviliges.

    Also, as MJ Akbar rightly said, Muslim leaders have to learn to be leaders and not pleaders.]


    So right..Its high time muslims get over the minority hangover and start acting for themselves,rather than expecting somebody else to make their lives better -Nimmy

    • abu abdul rahman
    • November 9th, 2008

    From where subsidy funds are receiving from ? neither state nor central government were allocated funds, how muslims are benefitted ?

    The excess money receiving from muslims, part of the money were returning to them as subsidy ?

    It is high time to change the terms subsidy !

    MJ Akbar had said so many things including hindu terrorism !

    Yes,as I said above,either stop sobing about appeasement,or ask government to open market for all carrier companies..But well,I don’t agree with your statement that “The excess money receiving from muslims, part of the money were returning to them as subsidy ?”..There is no hindu money or muslims money or buddhism money..Its indian money,governemnt’s money and that is being spent on Hajj or kumbh mela or whatever… Maybe we need a professional reengineering in many areas of our nation.Together we stand,divided we fall..-Nimmy

    • Abu Abdul Rahman
    • November 11th, 2008

    But I don’t agree with you too !

    It is the money of Indian muslims, they don’t have any other option left, moreover people like you under the impression that Haji are performing Haj on Government Cost, but how the funds are generating to spent on Hajis.

    If the Indian Government will give authority to Haj committees to charter aircrafts for the purpose of Haj, may be these committees will organize in better way in much lesser cost for hajis !

    • Salauddeen
    • December 8th, 2008

    Muslims in the UK go for Hajj without needing any govt. intervention.

    Nimmi claims “govt. push Hajj subsidy down the throats of Indian Muslims” – this sounds like patent nonsense.

    Not all Indian Muslims, according to the various articles cited by her, avail themselves of this subsidy.

    So Muslims can choose to apply for a subsidy or choose not to apply for a subisidy!

    So Nimmy – stop telling fibs!

    • Abu Abdul Rahman
    • December 12th, 2008

    @ Salauddeen,

    Excellent name with different spelling quite amazing, do i know your real name !

    How UK muslims or Indian Muslims go to Hajj is not the question, the real question is Indian Government is giving the subsidy ? or the name subsidy to be renamed, as there is no allocation of budget for subsidy, than how come funds are generating ?

    Therefore, it is high time for Indian Government to renamed the Hajj subsidy ?

    Hi brother..Can you please add more to your thoughts on how money is allocated for Hajj subsidy..Since when I read your last comment,I tried a lot to know how is this done,but I didn’t get any worthy articles..It would be really great if you could add more..Salam and thanks a lot for visiting -Nimmy

  9. Nimmy, I am afraid you are not understanding the Indian state and Indian democracy well, as far as I am concerned. In India, as opposed to the west the masses see their vote as a means of influencing government to bring about positive change in their lives, even if it comes close to being an intrusion.

    Contrast this with attitude in the west, where democracy implies that the state not interfere with individuals as less as possible. So the mass of Indians (Muslims or otherwise) will not have a problem with a Hajj subsidy, because it is seen by them as a positive interference by government. Also secularism, in India has a vastly different meaning than in the west. In India, it is embedded in the culture of most states (except maybe Gujarat and Kashmir after all that has happened there), whereas it is defined more in terms of the state.

    Sure there is corruption in the subsidy programs and some right wingers are opposed to it, but most Indians would like to see the government involved in their life and religion as opposed to stay away from it.


    Vikram,thanks for visiting and giving your comment..Your comment is very informative with lot of insight..I will read more and will come back to you later..Thanks a lot.. Good day -Nimmy

    • Palrama
    • October 21st, 2009

    Nimmy
    While arguing so many points , I will like to uphold one single point. The Indian muslims are the converted low caste criminal Hindus, who have been kept out of the society from the historic past. They are still so stupid rather brain dead that they cannot understand that they were converted and still shows loyalty to the people of Saudis who see them as the sewage cleaner or the the free labors.
    And we the Hidnus do all the good for them while they keep on crying for more. The Indian Muslims are the most disgusting creatures on the planet to be concluded.

      • Nimmy
      • October 22nd, 2009

      🙂

        • Irfan
        • December 31st, 2012

        HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, very good reply by Nimmy.

    • babu
    • May 31st, 2011

    INDIA IS A democracy COUNTRY. EVERY PEOPLE SHOULD HAS EQUAL RIGHTS. MUSLIMS ARE GETTING HAJJ BENEFIT. HINDUS ALSO GET BENEFIT FOR GOING HIMALAYAS, KASI, RAMESWARAM.

    INDIAN GOVENMENT & STATE GOVERNMENT HAS TO DECIDE THIS.

    BABU

    SOCIAL WORKER

    • jishnu
    • August 12th, 2011

    My dear friend,
    I saw your comment regarding kumbh mela and all other hindu rituals. But do your homework before writing any of these things. In the SECULAR state India(The district magistrate — a representative of the secular State — fires the arrow to set Ravana’s effigy ablaze) which even this DM is part of, handles the hindu religious institutions and even accounts the money from various temples to gov. treasury. So gov. is like a care-taker for all hindu rituals.Jai Hind

  1. March 21st, 2009
  2. August 18th, 2011

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