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V. T. Rajshekar, in full Vontibettu Thimmappa Rajshekar, also known as V. T. Rajshekar Shetty, (born 1932) is an Indian journalist who is the founder and editor of the Dalit Voice,[1] which has been described in a release by Human Rights Watch as "India’s most widely circulated Dalit journal".[2]

He is himself not a Dalit, he is the son of late P.S. Thimmappa Shetty, who retired as the Collector of South Kanara District. He belongs to the well-known Vontibettu Beedu family belonging to the higher caste Bunt community.[3]

He was formerly a journalist on the Indian Express,[2] where he worked for 25 years. He is the founder of the "Dalit Voice" organisation[4] a radical[5] wing of the broader movement for Dalit interests.[6] He is also the author of a great number of pamphlets and books, mainly published by his own organisation.

Contents

Positions and Dalit Voice

Started in 1981, Dalit Voice is a periodical launched by Rajshekhar.

Under Rajshekhar's leadership the Dalit Voice organisation formulated an Indian variant of afrocentrism similar to that of the Nation of Islam in the USA.[7]

Dalit Voice has published articles about "Zionist conspiracies" regarding Hitler and the Third Reich.[8][9] They have also supported the Iranian regime and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's denial of the Holocaust.[10]

Articles in the Dalit Voice have stated that the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion is a real Jewish conspiracy.[11] and that Indian Jews were "join(ing) hands (with Hindus) to crush Muslims, Blacks and India's Dalits".[12]

Rajshekar has made parallels between the Brahmins of India and the Jews. He stated that that the two groups had the same ethnic origin. He called Brahmins "The Jews of India" stating that "a Jew is one who is a born Jew. There is no conversion to the Jewish religion". Similarly, in his view, "a Brahmin is one who is a born Brahmin"; they are "as bad as the Jews" and that Brahmins and Jews have joined hands "in a big way" in the USA, England and Europe.[12].

"The First World War, the Second World War, the establishment of Communism, the rise of Hitler, were also systematically planned and executed by Zionists." According to him, Bill Clinton was the "victim of a Zionist conspiracy", for the Zionists, who "control the entire American politics, economy and the media as well", are "angry that Clinton refused to finish the demon of Islam and render all-out support to Israel".[13].

A scholarly historical survey of antisemitism by Léon Poliakov referred to Rajshekar's movement in the following terms:

The phenomenon of anti-Semitism in a vocal though marginal and unrepresentative section of the Dalit movement is attributed somewhat patronizingly to the “mental confusion among India’s poor Dalits”.[6]

Given his upper caste origins, many of his detractors have questioned his commitment to the Dalit cause.[14]

Caste - A Nation Within the Nation

The book declares the Indian castes as nations within the nation of India. It argues for the strengthening of each caste. Rajshekhar further demands that the Dalits be deemed superior to all other castes and build a segregated Dalitist state in India.[15] He has expressed similar views in interviews as well.[16]

Passport confiscation

In 1986 Rajshekar’s passport was confiscated because of "anti-Hinduism writings outside of India". The same year, he was arrested in Bangalore under India’s Terrorism and Anti-Disruptive Activities Act. Rajshekar told Human Rights Watch that this arrest was for an editorial he had written in Dalit Voice, that another writer who republished the editorial was also arrested, and that he was eventually released with an apology.[2]. Rajshekar has also been arrested under the Perversion Act and under the Indian Penal Code for creating disaffection between communities. He has also been placed on the "dangerous persons list" of the Indian home ministry.[2] The only issue with these statements is that India 's Terrorism and Anti-Disruptive Activities Act was formulated in 1985 but enforced in 1987 so Rajshekar' arrest or confiscation of Passport story may be false.

Books and pamphlets

  • Brahminism : Father of Fascism, Racism, Nazism: Bangalore : Dalit Sahitya Academy, 1993
  • Mahatma Gandhi and Babasaheb Ambedkar: Clash of Two Values: The Verdict of History. Bangalore: Dalit Sahitya Akademy, 1989
  • Dalit: The Black Untouchables of India (foreword by Y.N. Kly). Atlanta; Ottawa: Clarity Press, c1987 ISBN 0-932863-05-1 (Originally published under title: Apartheid in India. Bangalore: Dalit Action Committee, 1979)
  • Apartheid in India: An International Problem, 2nd rev. ed. Publisher: Bangalore: Dalit Sahitya Akademy, 1983
  • Who is the Mother of Hitler? Bangalore: Dalit Sahitya Akademy, 1984
  • Ambedkar and His Conversion: a critique. Bangalore: Dalit Action Committee, Karnataka, 1980
  • Caste - A Nation within the Nation
  • India's Intellectual Desert
  • The Zionist Arthashastra (Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion)
  • India's Muslim Problem
  • Dalit Voice - A New Experiment in Journalism
  • "In defence of Brahmins", 2005
  • Know The Hindu Mind, 2008

References

  1. ^ Dalit Voice About Us
  2. ^ a b c d Human Rights Watch Article
  3. ^ Chitana Shilpi (His biography in Kannada), by Rajendra, Dec.4, 2005, http://www.dalitvoice.org/Templates/jan2006/articles.htm
  4. ^ Dalit Voice Website listing Rajshekhar as the founder
  5. ^ Sikand, Yoginder (2004). Islam, Caste and Dalit-Muslim Relations in India. Global Media Publications, New Delhi Pg. 98.
  6. ^ a b Poliakov, Léon (1994). Histoire de l’antisémitisme 1945-93 (P.395). Paris.  
  7. ^ African Studies Review, Vol. 43, No. 1, Special Issue on the Diaspora (Apr., 2000), pp. 189-201online
  8. ^ dalitvoice.org
  9. ^ Google Cache of Dalitvoice article See "Abuse of History" Hitler not worst villain of 20th century as painted by "Zionists"
  10. ^ Defeat in Iraq & fall of Bush: India warned to quickly adjust to big changes in WestDalit Voice Article
  11. ^ Dalit Voice, 1-12-1991##
  12. ^ a b Dalit Voice, 16-1-1993##
  13. ^ Clinton, victim of Zionist conspiracy?” Dalit Voice, 1-9-1998.
  14. ^ Dalit Voice Vol 24, No. 15 see "'Socialist Brahmin' calls DV casteist" and "Editor answerable only to DV family , not prostitutes of vaidiks"
  15. ^ Rajshekhar, V T . 2004. Caste a Nation within a Nation 'Recipe for a Bloodless Revolution. 'BfC'
  16. ^ Interview by Yoginder Singh Sikand
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