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Letters from Readers

September 2017
Letters from Readers

Timely cover story was an eye-opener

Greetings, Khabar and Lavina Melwani, I wish to thank you for your cover story on Africans in India (August issue). My visit to India was limited to the ‘Golden Triangle’ of New Delhi, Jaipur, and Agra. Hopefully, I will one day visit the south of India as well. It is useful to know that India possessed the mindset to embrace her African brothers and sisters centuries ago. Perhaps that mindset can be resurrected and given new life in our global society. The virus of racial oppression must be cured like other scourges that plague humanity. Keep up the good work, Khabar. Continue to educate and inform.

S. F. H. Shaheed
By email



Your cover story in the August issue of Khabar made interesting reading. Many Indians, including myself, have never heard of this part of Indian history. Thanks.

But I cannot resist my temptation to make a few remarks about the article. First, you accuse the Indians, mainly the Hindus, of not following their own scriptural injunction and you quote the Taittiriya Upanishadic Mantra “Atithi Devo Bhava.” But by definition, an atithi is one who just walks into your house, invited or uninvited, stays for a brief period of time, enjoys your hospitality and voluntarily leaves.

He does not stay there for good, take over your house and make you a servant. Such a person has a different name—an aggressor. He is not a deva, but an asura. The Englishmen who came to India as traders and the Mughals belong to this category.

Secondly, your writing discusses only the beginning and the end of the story, leaving out the middle. It does not tell our readers how they managed to become masters from being slaves, what political games they played in the process, how they set one gullible Indian king against the other, and finally destroyed both. We have not forgotten what the Mughals and the British did in our country.

Perhaps the African slaves did not play these tricks on us. But it is good to know. Thanks.

Gopalakrishnan Veeraswamy
By email



I am simply amazed by your pursuit of excellence. Your thought-provoking articles, your contributors and, of course, the brilliant art work make your magazine stand head and shoulders above the others. Lavina Melwani deserves special thanks. [In the August cover story] mention of the father and grandfather of Shivaji as well as Maharani Bamba, wife of the Black Prince, is refreshing. Maybe the paramour of Razia Sultan—Jamal-ud-din Yakut—was unlucky not to be mentioned. Kindly keep up the good work and continue winning the hearts of the diaspora.

Tej Khurana
By email








A topic of monumental significance

[As U.S. citizens debate the removal of Confederate statues, including the carving on Stone Mountain, a reader comments on our August 2015 editorial,“Confederate Heritage vs. Southern Hospitality,” which considered the issue of these “war heroes.”]

Should Confederate monuments stay, or should they go? At some point, an investment in a monument transcends what it purports. We decry that some Egyptian regimes obliterated carved references to dishonored rulers, and how ISIS (like some early Christians) destroyed temples of societies no longer in favor. Such destruction was a form of media control. We’re better than that in our culture. We have more channels of communication. Instead, let’s redouble educational efforts. Broadcast their context. Relegate them to history while we admire the art, and preserve the human effort.

Emil Walcek
online comment





Our troubling addictions and disabling habits

Two things really make me out of breath these days. One is the ubiquitous sight of people, young and old, glued to their so-called smart phones, and the other is the equally ubiquitous “made in China” products. Nowadays it is hard to find products made in the USA.

Bill Fitzpatrick is right (August Americana column:“America’s Other God: The Technology Illusion”). Our insatiable desire for technology has not made us fundamentally a better society. Our desire to acquire cheap stuff has made us vulnerable in the world stage. Despite technological progress, nearly one in every seven Americans use food stamps. Without the SNAP program, tomorrow nearly 43 million of our fellow Americans would stand in the bread line, reminiscent of the Great Depression! Last year 3.4 million babies were born in America. Over 2 million were born to Medicaid. Think about it! We are slaves to the emotional blackmailing of the corporate marketing machine, credit cards, banks, and cheap goods. We are in debt to the eyeball. We are stressed. Xanax has become the top selling drug in many states. Apple, Amazon, and the likes have not lifted the nation in general. Our kids in their 20s are graduating from colleges but in debt to the hilt. We are addicted to cheap Chinese products. Nearly 73 percent of Americans do not know their immediate neighbors well or communicate with them, but we love our smart phones and spend enormous amounts of time on social media! Americans are largely responsible for the rise of a third world country called China because of our buying habits and corporate greed. Even these days China is acting bellicose vis à vis United States. We have sold our head, heart, and pocketbook to China. Has technology really helped us as human beings and society in general? Thanks to Bill for his article. He is right.

Name withheld by request
by email



In an Around Town report last month (“Bangla Dhara celebrates Atlanta Bengali cultural torchbearers”), one caption had an incorrect name. We regret the error. The caption should read, (Right) Sangeetkar’s CD release ceremony for Pardesi II with members (in blue): Shekhar Pendalwar, tabla; Amitava Sen, violin; and Musharatul Huq Akmal, sitar.

What’s on YOUR mind?

We welcome original, unpublished letters from our readers. You could either respond to a specific article in Khabar or write about issues relevant to our community. Letters may be edited for length and other considerations. Longer submissions by readers may be considered for the “My Turn” column.

Email: letters@khabar.com • Fax: (770) 234-6115.

Mail: Khabar, Inc. 3635 Savannah Place Dr, Suite 400, Duluth, GA 30096.

Note: Views expressed in the Letters section do not necessarily represent those of the publication.


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