Tata Literary Festival or anti-Modi propaganda?

By : Aditya Agrawal

Was “Tata Literary Festival” a festival indeed or a pretext for indulging in Modi-basing?

This was supposed to be a Literary festival, but let us look at some of the discussion topics:

  1. Re-evaluating Nehru’s contribution to India: Chacha Par Charcha
  2. Freedom of Expression is in imminent danger.
  3. No Time for Silence: Why writers feel the need to speak up.
  4. Who or what is authentically “Indian Spirituality”: “Happy drug or overdose”.
  5. Refugees – A burden or a responsibility.
  6. Why has India become more intolerant?
  7. Can there be a peaceful solution to Kashmir?
  8. Uncovering truth in a ocean of Headlines.
  9. Rising inequalities and prejudices in New India.

All panel discussion were similar in one sense: All participants (and also moderator) had similar leanings.

So the moderators raised opposing views and those were thrashed by participants.

I have compiled a list of main participants and moderators.

One can understand that Rajdeep Sardesai and Barkha Dutt would be called but not Swapan Dasgupta or Kanchan Gupta.

The tone of a Lit Fest is more or less decided when Festival Director is a leftist or a Congressi (In this case Anil Dharker).

Moderators (carefully selected) do the rest. They will stifle opposing views, cut short panel discussions, or be openly partisan.

It was a well selected panel of participants and moderators with a predictive Modi-bbashing show. Who were these persons? Guess.

Here goes the list:

Panel members:

Nayantara Sahagal

Vir Sanhvi

Jairam Ramesh

Malavika Shaanghvi

Vikram Seth

Shobha De

Sudheendra Kulkarni

Nirmalaya Kumar

Nandita Haksar

Rohan Murty

Nilanjana Roy

Sandip Roy

Siddhartha Varadrajan

Sunil Shanbagh

C. P. Sundaran

A. S. Dulat

Rajdeep Sardesai

Parena Singh

T. M. Krishna

Rashmi Poddar

Wendy Doniger

Siddhartha Bhatia

Harsh Mander

Ayaz Menon

Bhrigupati Singh

NS Rajan

Devdutt Pattanaik

Poonam Saxena

Anuja Chauhan

Salman Khursheed

Aakar Patel

Arshia Sattar

Vamsi Juluri

Meena Kandasamy

Lorraine Adams

Now see the Moderators:

Anuradha Sengupta

Anil Dharkar

Arshia Sattar

Manjula Narayan

Paromita Vohra

Aakar Patel

Siddhartha Varadrajan

Avirook Sen

Barkha Dutt

Sreenivasan Jain

Kalpna Sharma

Naresh Fernandez


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Authors of posts
    Nov 05, 2015 @ 23:57:21

    Reblogged this on People's News.



  2. Santanu Dey
    Nov 08, 2015 @ 19:24:07

    Unfortunately the above group will have an expected spring in their stride in the coming days vis-a-vis Bihar election results. Don’t know what is in store for my India, which I feel has been under the clutch of the above group and others of their ilk but is it going to be the same India controlled by self-declared intellectuals who have agendas of their own and have a definition of India in which anything originally Indian is a taboo?



    • Authors of posts
      Nov 08, 2015 @ 21:18:17

      Let us be realistic about what is happening and what is in store for India. Satrughan Sinha is happy that Modi has not been able to consolidate his expected voters. Advani says emergency cannot be ruled out again in India. Many BJP people are unhappy that they are not able to get out what they wanted out of the power that belong to them. Except a very few number of people in BJP, by and large they have no knowledge and depth of the strength of a spiritual India. They cannot connect with the heart of ordinary people. They know nothing beyond temple, cow and beef. Modi is virtually all alone in his vision and efforts. And, I can assure you by my personal experience that BJP leaders don’t want fresh blood, ideas, talent, thinkers only because that may upset the entrenched element’s position of power. Bihar election is warning shot for Modi of what is to come for him. It should be a matter of top priority for him – even leaving behind investment, progress, defence, foreign alliances – because if he looses in future like this he looses everything, including his grand plans. What is the way out for him? 1. Establish top quality school for grooming original and talented leaders ready to take his place as and when he leaves the scene, for natural reasons. 2. Establish these new leaders HERE and NOW – parallel to him and when he is still there – as darling of people. There must be 10 or 20 Modis who should be in the field to win people’s hearts. 3. Ruthlessly destroy Shatrughans and …… while still there is charisma in Modi. 4. The governing principle should be that India is more important than Modi and Modi has got this opportunity to serve India, which opportunity may never come in future because of the peculiar features of democracy and changing demography.



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