This Week in Minority Rights 2018–05–16

By Scott Douglas Jacobsen

“(Berlin) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on May 18, 2018 in Sochi is a crucial opportunity to press for the release of a wrongfully detained Russian human rights defender and to raise other key human rights issues, Human Rights Watch said today.

The human rights defender, Oyub Titiev, director of the leading Russian human rights organization Memorial in Grozny, Chechnya, has been held since January 9.

“A phone call from President Putin to the Chechen authorities could ensure Oyub Titiev’s freedom,” said Wenzel Michalski, Germany director at Human Rights Watch. “Merkel should urge Putin to ensure that Titiev is released before the start of the World Cup.””


“In any democratic society, the constitutional impulse for giving some special rights to minorities stems not from the desire to create a ‘pampered’ or ‘appeased’ section of population but to give to them a sense of security and confidence.

The issue of minorities in a plural and diverse polity like India’s evolves from the basic reality of tension and dialectics between the unit and the whole or the individual and society. Today, minority institutions are coming under threat with the BJP-led government changing long-standing official policy on, for example, the minority character of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) and Jamia Millia Islamia. The erstwhile UPA government had gone in appeal to the Supreme Court against the Allahabad high court decision in Naresh Agrawal (2005) in which it denied AMU’s minority character and struck down a few provisions of the 1981 amendment to the Aligarh Muslim University Act, 1920.

The Modi government has not only withdrawn this appeal but submitted a fresh affidavit stating that AMU is not a minority institution. Similarly, the current government has reversed its predecessor’s stand in the Delhi high court in support of the National Council for Minority Educational Institutions (NCMEI) recognising Jamia as a minority university.”



The panelists at a national convention have expressed dissatisfaction over the ‘government failure’ to fully implement the Supreme Court judgment of June 19, 2014 for providing protection for religious minorities.

The two-day convention was organsied on Wednesday by the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) in collaboration with the Community World Service Asia.

Parliamentarians, bureaucrats, human rights activists and a former high court judge were among the panelists who expressed discontent during the inaugural session of the event.”


“In 2013, a coalition government led by the Indian National Congress, the then United Progressive Alliance (UPA), had approved a draft Communal Violence Bill. The bill made communal violence, including hate propaganda, punishable by law and also allowed for prevention and control of communal violence, speedy investigation and trials, and rehabilitation of victims. It also held public servants accountable for any acts of commission and omission while handling communal violence.

At the time, the bill was opposed by the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, who called the Bill ‘ill-conceived, poorly drafted and a recipe of disaster.’ The BJP had also criticized the bill as being loaded against the majority community. In February 2014, when the bill was introduced in the winter session of the parliament, a united opposition had twisted the government’s arm forcing it to withdraw the bill, calling it anti-federal.

Fast forward to 2017–2018

Since 2014, India has become a hotbed of communal tension with the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) — an extremist Hindutva organization — stoking the flames of communalism in the country. Hindutva vigilantes have been targeting religious minorities especially the Muslims over cow slaughter and eating beef ever since the BJP, led by now prime minister Narendra Modi, who came to power in 2014. There have been onslaughts on personal freedoms and a growing Islamophobia.”


(Updated September 28, 2016)

Scott Douglas Jacobsen founded In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-books, free or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott:, Scott.Jacobsen@TrustedClothes.Com, Scott@ConatusNews.Com,, Scott@Karmik.Ca.

He is a Moral Courage Webmaster and Outreach Specialist (Fall, 2016) at the UCI Interdisciplinary Center for the Scientific Study of Ethics and Morality (Ethics Center), Interview Columnist for Conatus News, Writer and Executive Administrator for Trusted Clothes, Interview Columnist for Basic Income Earth Network (BIEN), Councillor for the Athabasca University Student Union, Member of the Learning Analytics Research Group, writer for The Voice Magazine, Your Political Party of BC, ProBC, Marijuana Party of Canada, Fresh Start Recovery Centre, Harvest House Ministries, and Little Footprints Big Steps International Development Organization, Editor and Proofreader for Alfred Yi Zhang Photography, Community Journalist/Blogger for Gordon Neighbourhood House, Member-at-Large, Member of the Outreach Committee, the Finance & Fundraising Committee, and the Special Projects & Political Advocacy Committee, and Writer for Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Member of the Lifespan Cognition Psychology Lab and IMAGe Psychology Lab, Collaborator with Dr. Farhad Dastur in creation of the CriticalThinkingWiki, Board Member, and Foundation Volunteer Committee Member for the Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation, and Independent Landscaper.

He was a Francisco Ayala Scholar at the UCI Ethics Center, Member of the Psychometric Society Graduate Student Committee, Special Advisor and Writer for ECOSOC at NWMUN, Writer for TransplantFirstAcademy and ProActive Path, Member of AT-CURA Psychology Lab, Contributor for a student policy review, Vice President of Outreach for the Almas Jiwani Foundation, worked with Manahel Thabet on numerous initiatives, Student Member of the Ad–Hoc Executive Compensation Review Committee for the Athabasca University Student Union, Volunteer and Writer for British Columbia Psychological Association, Community Member of the KPU Choir (even performed with them alongside the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra), Delegate at Harvard World MUN, NWMUN, UBC MUN, and Long Beach Intercollegiate MUN, and Writer and Member of the Communications Committee for The PIPE UP Network.

He published in American Enterprise Institute, Annaborgia, Conatus News, Earth Skin & Eden, Fresh Start Recovery Centre, Gordon Neighbourhood House, Huffington Post, In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, Jolly Dragons, Kwantlen Polytechnic University Psychology Department, La Petite Mort, Learning Analytics Research Group, Lifespan Cognition Psychology Lab, Lost in Samara, Marijuana Party of Canada, MomMandy, Noesis: The Journal of the Mega Society, Piece of Mind, Production Mode, Synapse, TeenFinancial, The Peak, The Ubyssey, The Voice Magazine, Transformative Dialogues, Treasure Box Kids, Trusted Clothes.




Scott Douglas Jacobsen is the Founder of In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. Jacobsen supports science and human rights.

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Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Scott Douglas Jacobsen is the Founder of In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. Jacobsen supports science and human rights.

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