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A sick and communal SMS doing the rounds during this time of tragedy in Mumbai

November 29, 2008

Some SMS’ are doing the rounds in Mumbai and perhaps in other places too. Here is one, which was published in the Mumbai Mirror:

Don’t know where he is when you need him. We want him to go and save amchi Mumbai. Army, NSG commandoes are not marathi manoos….why should they fight and lay down their life for Mumbaikars.

The last line made my stomach churn. This proves that non- marathi people too have their share of communal people. And here is another SMS that the Times of India said that is “stood out from the rest.” What do they mean by saying that?

Where is Raj Thackeray and his “brave Sena”? Tell him that 200 NSG commandoes from Delhi (no marathi manoos, all south and north indians) have been sent to Mumbai to fight the terrorists so that he can sleep peacefully tonight in Shivaji Park. Please forward this so it finally reaches the coward bully.

These SMS’s prove that a hate campaign against Maharashtra and Maharashtrians is on. It is demeaning and disrespectful of the death of the local people (policemen, 14 of them) who gave up their life for this country. These sms have turned this issue sectarian. I say shame on all those people who forwarded this communal sms. I say the people who forwarded this are more communal that Raj T. Because Raj T has a motive to do all these things, he is a goonda politician, but if educated and so-called liberal people are doing this I say they are sick and the biggest hypocrites of us all. Raj T makes no bones about the fact that he is an extreme right politician, he is admitting that he wants preference for Maharashtrians, that he is sectarian and he has shown us that believes that violence is the answer. He is not a representative of the marathi people, that we Maharashtrians know. But who cares that he is not a representative of the marathi people? Certainly not people who are communal minded, and also not those who think their race is superior, who have always believed that they are superior. These people are the sickest of all, those who pretend or imagine themselves to be liberal. They don’t care that Raj Thackeray does not represent Maharashtrians!

To talk sectarian and communal at a time when our country is suffering they are talking of north indians and south indians!!
Sick!!! And Shame shame shame on them all!!!! And anyone who comments please note that not a single hate comment will be published here. (Update:  Also please read my comment policy before posting your comments here)

Let these cowards come and face Raj Thackeray himself. Let them go to him and tell him to this face what they think of him. Let them target the men who work for him. Tell him, if you have any courage, all these things instead of sending cheap communal smses to divide our country. Please do not target the average Maharashtrian because it makes you a coward, communal and a bully.

Update: Please not that my anger in this post is not against those who could have sent this sms inadvertently, without thinking deeply on it. It is targeted towards those who have communal feelings.  So chill.

Related Reading: Give some credit to Maharashtra
Do local Mumbaikars resent ‘outsiders’?

157 Comments leave one →
  1. December 1, 2008 10:16 pm

    @stud.boy99: What I meant was, if a part of India was suffering with a similar situation like Pakistan, what would we do? Why weren’t we able do much about Kashmir till now? Why weren’t we able to do much about ULFA till now? Why weren’t we able to do much about Naxals till now? Why a common man becomes a terrorist? The answers to all these questions, if at all we hope to eliminate terrorism from its roots, is very important. While stricter action needs to be taken on the ground for law enforcement and anti terror measures, that is just a short term measure which will not help us eliminate terror on the long run. Or if you too think that politicians are only responsible for what ever happened, like million others, I don’t want to say anything.

    Destination Infinity

  2. keralaviews permalink
    December 1, 2008 11:01 pm

    Nikhil George is right. As Keralites, not affected or involved in Thackeray-North Indian bash, our opionions should be considered as somewhat neutral. There is a tinge of communalism and parochialism in every one of us. Nita, your are exhibiting that.
    It is a biting taunt and you have taken the bite despite your not being one of the Marathis who support Raj T. The message is a reminder to those Marathis who support T. that you can be caught in your own Web. We don’t see much hate behind the messages.

    Keralaviews, this is not personally against Nikhil and I think you have taken the bite! A lot of people mindlessly forwarded the sms I am sure and some as a joke. Not that I think its something wonderful. My views I have made clear. And ofcourse you won’t see hate in the sms, I am not at all surprised. The smses to me are clear hate, and just hate, but not everyone will see it. Some see hate, some don’t, some think its a joke, some don’t care. I don’t know which category your views fall into, but the fact that you think that my opinion is communalism and parochialism is the funniest thing I have read so far on this post. 🙂 If defense of one’s state is parochialism, then I am proud of being parochial. I will defend my state, always, and condemn all hate messages, against all states of India. I always thought parochialism was more Raj T style though. So I think in this case let us just agree to disagree. I am indeed sorry if you feel that Nikhil’s feelings are hurt, but I think in this second comment he has shown a mature response and has understood my point of view. – Nita.

  3. sangeeta permalink
    December 2, 2008 1:45 am

    Those who have started this sms have shown their true colors and mentality.It shows their belief that one can be an Indian only if you toe their line.
    Why is a regional issue mixed up with this tragic national event?Those who died in this massacre were from all parts of the country and world,
    Besides,those who propagated this senseless sms don’t seem to know that they are many Maharastrians in the Defence,and many who are fighting on the borders for the country , 15 state policemen also lost their lives in this massacre
    Raj T is sensible enough not to Tom Tom what his party is doing .

    If I have regional concerns and issues regarding my state,does it make me less of an Indian ?Every sane person will understand that this is not the time for raking up regionalism,but unfortunately those who have sent this sms don’t fall in that category.Besides the media as usual is trying to increase its TRP(NDTV)

    Sangeeta, i also feel that some mischievous people started this sms to create hate. A regional issue was mixed up with a tragic event to score brownie points. – Nita.

  4. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 2, 2008 2:07 am

    If original SMS are ok then MNS response is also understood. If all commandos were non marathis (which I don’t think) then 1,50,000 who died at Panipat were Marathis (defending from Afghans), thousands who liberated India were Marathis (Just remember Tilak, Rajguru, Rani of Jhansi of khub ladi mardani fame),…,
    Marathis never served and will never serve country keeping such narrow interests.

    Is it really worth responding these SMSs? I think it is degrading ourselves.

    Dnyanesh, I agree it is not worth it. They should be all trashed. I knew of these smses at least a day before I wrote and what instigated me was seeing the report in the tabloid, the times of india front page. The mns is equally sick to retaliate, but someone wrote to me saying that the sms about bhaiyyas is not written by mns, because it talks of raj t in a sarcastic manner and implies that this is what he should do, this is what he is capable of. Well, one doesn’t know the truth of this as i do not have the full text of the sms. One hate comment actually told me that I should write now about the retaliatory smses, but that shows that the person is not seeing this in a balanced manner. One cannot keep writing on the same topic, and frankly I am not in a mood to write again on this issue. Also I do not have a single authentic retaliatory sms with me and I doubt that it going to be forwarded from Kashmir to Kanyakumari. I think those who have sent these smses want to defend their actions for sending those hate smses and do not want to admit that they could have done anything silly. If they cant, I feel sad. – Nita.

  5. sangeeta permalink
    December 2, 2008 2:49 am

    Very true Dnyanesh

  6. MarathiButIndian permalink
    December 2, 2008 5:24 am

    This is completely sick attitude our educated people are showing right now.though its really necessary that Raj Thakare should come out and give some opinion in this dark hour .And if he is frightened due to whole terrorist attack then he don’t deserve to be marathi.If he really cares about Mumbai then he should train his MNS for such attacks not for bunch of stupid attacks he did on North Indian .
    This principles also applies to those sick politicians from north india.

  7. ahumanbean permalink
    December 2, 2008 8:46 am

    I find it interesting that the jerk who composed the original SMS – *someone* had to have originated the thought and the text – has not been visible through all the brou-ha-ha.

    Will you stand up and be counted, and rectify your wrong, SMS Composer?

  8. December 2, 2008 9:37 am

    @keralaviews let’s not consider these things personal. If Nita has such a view about these messages I’m sure many people like her has the same. We should understand that. What I was trying to say was that many here forwarded messages like this never trying to hurt the feelings of any Indian’s. I think from next time while forwarding sms or emails like these we should think whether they might have other implications or might hurt others even if unintentionally.

    Now Kerala CM has insulted Maj Sandeep’s family twice.As a Malayali I’m ashamed. If any sms spread in the rest of India targeting Keralites can we blame them?? He is our CM!!! We all should apologize to that family as Indians and take these incidents not on any regional basis.They are all politicians,same everywhere and will never change.

    Thank you Nikhil for responding. You would make any Indian proud. In fact I have softened my stance quite a bit after getting comments. I realise that many people who sent these messages did not mean to hurt, but the result was that people were hurt. And it is very generous of you to acknowledge that because we need to see all Indians as the same, whichever their community. If someone from another community is hurt, we need to feel their pain and look into ourselves, see whether we have contributed to it. That is who is a true Indian, not just one who attacks other communities. And about the Kerala CM, he is just an individual and anyone who targets Keralites because of that one individual’s remark should be ashamed of himself. I don’t know why, but after I got your comment, I felt so emotional. Thanks again. – Nita.

  9. December 2, 2008 11:57 am

    Hi NitaWriter!

    Maybe you are right. But be didn’t forget the killing of Rahul Raj. We didn’t forget the justifying the killings. and also I know that all Marathi maoos forget this incident after some time and again we Bihar/ UP wala on their target (like 1993 bomb blast, 2006 train blast)

    So I was involved in sending these sms.

    If we got positive response in near future from Mumbaikars we stand with Mumbai otherwise we are with terrorist.

  10. December 2, 2008 12:51 pm

    Praful you talk nonsense.

  11. December 2, 2008 12:52 pm


    Why lalu, paswan come mumbai to fight with terrorist.

    Did you ever heard that any terrorist attack in Bihar. Did you ever heard any Bihari caught with the link of terrorist.

    Why??? because Lalu, nitish, Pashwan made “bihari ” a Majdoor, not a terrorist.

  12. December 2, 2008 2:18 pm

    Yes Shubhendu Trivedi I am nonsense.

    You know !! I feel very secure when terrorist attacked on Mumbai all Mumbaikars are busy with update. and I feel secure because No Marathi Manoos ask my native home and they don’t kill me.

    But now again fear grips me (like Mumbaikars are also feared).

    “Mumbaikars feared from Terrorist we feared from Mumbaikars”.

  13. December 2, 2008 5:04 pm

    Dear Praful,
    I wouldn’t get into if you are nonsense or not, I for once did not say that. I said you are talking nonsense. And that you are.

    This is not the time for this petty business, we citizens have an opportunity for coming together and getting counted for a change, it might just be wasted away with empty rhetoric. Come on , let’s talk about India, let’s talk about my country. Why do you want to judge certain people because of some retarded politicians ALL the time?
    Please let us not waste the anger that we have today.

    Anger is creative, depression is useless
    Freeman John Dyson

    For once I would invite you to read this post.

  14. December 2, 2008 5:45 pm

    And me linking you to that post was an intentional parody 😉
    If bees and cows can do it. I think the “most intelligent” creatures can be at least be expected to work better at it.

    Warm Regards
    – S

  15. Kumar permalink
    December 2, 2008 10:14 pm


    What you are saying is sick ..When something happens in your family (say your brother ) will you say, oh that day my brother that beaten it is good if an enemy beats my brother.

    Common ..raise the matter at the apprpriate time and place.

    Its silly or your innocence, respecting our/others parents or our/others culture or language will always makes one a better personality.

    December 3, 2008 8:59 am

    I wonder which idiot/idiots would want to propagate such a divisive SMS when unity and solidarity is imperative in Mumbai and India. It is ok to ridicule Raj , but the SMS generalized questioning where are the marathi’s in the time of crisis. I hate to fall pray to such divisive campaigns but being a MARATHA kshatriya I will answer this factually incorrect and sinister SMS. —– Asst. sub-inspector Tukaram Omble was an ordinary marathi manoos , so were the 17 martyrs from police ( which included 3 senior officers Karkare, Kamte, Salaskar) and 35 policeman in hospital with bullet and splinter wounds., so were the Marathas who were part of the NSG , MARCOS and Grenadiers involved in the operations .People who write such messages probably did not even know the meaning of the acronym NSG, plz do your homework before much stupid comments. The marathas form one of the main pillars of the infantry of the Indians army. They have more than 31 infantry battlions wich includes 2 elite para-commandos. The marathas are very well represented in the NSG also. So to people propagating such absurd SMS’s – LAYOFF


    Bhushan, that is the thought which occurred to me also. That the NSG means National Security guard and comprises of people from all over the country and I also thought that the sms was extremely stupid. Some hate mongers thought it up and gullible people (some gullible, some hate mongers themselves) sent it on. The media does its bit, by publishing such nonsense on its front page, as the tabloid times of india did. Today another tabloid Mumbai Mirror they have mentioned the home state of one brave man, a man who confronted the terrorists at vt station, alongwith another colleague. Many other cops ran away. I salute this man, not because he is a “bhaiyya” but because he is Indian. It’s time we closed down all communal newspapers as creating divisions amongst people. – Nita.

  17. Pusti Malaka permalink
    December 3, 2008 10:13 am

    Why are you Maharashtrians taking these SMS’s so personally. No one is pointing a finger at you all, just at Raj Thackeray and his bunch of like minded goons.

    Your question:Why are you Maharashtrians taking these SMS’s so personally? is a question that everyone who sent these smses need to ask themselves, which automatically means that the question turns into: Why are Maharashtrians taking these SMS’s so personally?. I think just re-reading the sms, and replacing the word marathi people with the people of your own state or religion might give a glimmer of an answer. Might. – Nita.

  18. December 3, 2008 3:07 pm

    While your post makes sense, I must tell you that the masses do not think like this. Even many of the educated ones.

    Raj Thackeray’s silence has left many stunned, including me. But as you rightly pointed out, that it is HIS JOB to do to Mumbai and Maharashtra what he is doing.

    Maybe, you as a moderate Marathi can come out and talk against him, because the intentions of this sms dont seem as bad as you seem to have understood. No offence against anybody, but public anger is against everyone and Raj had to be dragged in somewhat and somehow.

    Trailblazer, even if the masses who sent this smses did not intend to target Maharshtrians, the end result was that they did. As one commentator Anil has so wisely pointed out, what is all this talk of intention? When you use wrong words, and hurt the feelings of your mother, sister or brother don’t you feel bad and regret it? Or do you justify it by saying your intentions were to hurt “another”? Ofcourse not, and that is why I cannot buy your logic. And I have talked against Raj Thackeray many times, but frankly I just do not think he is important enough. And no I do not agree that hate smses should be sent against any community at this time of tragedy, even if the intention was to hurt one person, however much a bad guy he is. Also the fact that Raj T is keeping out of the media glare is what his suppporters are praising him for. Mrs. Thackaray sent and sms to Amitabh Bachchan sayng the MNS is involved in massive blood donation drives etc. I am just pointing it out to you that because Raj T is out of the media glare it is a good thing. We don’t want to see him, we don’t want to hear from him. You see? – Nita.

  19. December 3, 2008 6:23 pm

    I don’t think this was intended to be a hate campaign against Marathi people. This was more like a hate campaign again Raj Thackeray and his goons!

    Diviya, maybe it wasn’t meant so by the masses, but that isn’t the point. I know people in real life (maharashtrians) who have been hurt and upset by it and as can be seen from the comments, even online people haven’t liked it. This habit of passing on hate smses and emails makes no sense to me at least. – Nita.

  20. December 3, 2008 7:18 pm

    I, after having lived in Maharashtra for the best part of my life, respect Marathis very much. Their culture, their language. Everything.

    But I justify this SMS’ “intentions” because it does not say anything against Marathis. It doesn’t. But after everything Raj Thackeray has done, people are not going to forget all that easily and the outcome is hence a very opportunistic SMS like this.

    Even I believe that hate should be curbed, whoever the recipient of that hate. The masses think otherwise. So I wanted to clarify that I’m that type of a person who wouldn’t forward such a sms, but the moment I received it, I wasn’t either annoyed or upset. I was pleased that at least most do not see any logic in Thackeray and his politics of division. Because if we have people whose role models are Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin, then we could well have someone in India trying to replicate Raj’s philosophies.

    It was just a sense of relief, more than anything. 🙂

    Regarding your comments about his importance, you are spot on.

    Thanks Trailblazer. I agree there is no place in India for Hitler admirers. And good to know that you didn’t forward that sms. 🙂 – Nita.

  21. sangeeta permalink
    December 3, 2008 11:51 pm

    Why keep harping on Raj T at this time,because where does one stop, this list will be endless with the names of those playing divisive politics.To name a few..

    Mulayam,Lalu Amar Singh and his gang – Casteist,communal …
    Karunanidhi – Parochial,regional …
    Modi -communal…
    Mayawati- casteist
    Congress,Communist — casteist,communal,cl assist ……
    BJP – Communal…

    How come divisive politics played by them is not is not highlighted or causing so much anguish ?
    The list will go on and on…I will really not a damn for this stupid email.
    This is the time to keep aside regionalism and think about national security.

  22. Kumar permalink
    December 4, 2008 1:09 am

    A true Indian will infact will take all indians along including Raj Thackeray during this time in India or mumbai.

  23. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 4, 2008 1:46 am

    Ok. It looks like there are few folks who do not understand what ‘respect’ is.

    The first SMS
    “Don’t know where he is when you need him. We want him to go and save amchi Mumbai. Army, NSG commandoes are not marathi manoos….why should they fight and lay down their life for Mumbaikars.”
    – What we understood from it is that Army, NSG commandos do not include Marathis. It is wrong and insulting when Maharashtrians have highly noticable representation in these forces. Manay Maharashtrians were hanged and died during freedom struggle. Maharashtrians are proud citizens of this country. We (and even Raj T) are not asking for a separate nation.

    “Tell him that 200 NSG commandoes from Delhi (no marathi manoos, all south and north indians)”
    Again, the tone of it is as if all non Marathis are doing some kind of favour on us. We do not think we do any favour on other people of India when our brave sons die while fighting against Pakistanis on the streets of Srinagar or on Kargil. We are proud of that. Isn’t it fair to expect the same from other citizens?

    Now regarding Raj T, before making any comments, just learn Marathi and listen to his speeches. I do not agree with his ways but have heard his speeches. The points he has raised are important and should be thought over seriously. The price of ignoring him will be heavier.

  24. sangeeta permalink
    December 4, 2008 3:15 am

    I give credit to Raj T for not raising any regional issues at this critical time.He did not say that so many Marathis were killed in the carnage or so many Maharashtrians fought against the terroristS.
    It was the people who sent this SMS who have shown what kind of losers they are by raising these issues.
    These are the very people who would like to stay in Maharashtra for good but would look down on the local culture and not want to learn Marathi.And when told about it will accuse the person of being regional and xenophobic!!

    Sangeeta, as you said, Raj Thackeray is not relevant to the Mumbai terror attacks. I would never have thought of him, if it wasn’t for those hate smses. In fact, Raj Thackeray is a party just formed, and the Congress govt. allowed him to prosper to break the Shiv Sena. Comparing him to lalu or any other leader is also futile as Raj T is a political nobody, as yet. But people are giving him so much importance, its funny! I also agree that some people feel that defending one’s own state is being parochial. I don’t think so, because I do not think that having pride in being Maharashtrian, Punjabi, Bihari or Tamil means that you are anti-India. What is anti-Indian is looking down on other communities, making fun of them. – Nita.

  25. December 4, 2008 3:28 am

    Okay this is at a point that I would not want to be a part of the debate any longer. But I would still speak just once more.


    I have been reading comments by you on this blog for a while now. You are spot on about the contributions of Marathis to the Indian nation and no one doubts that. There are ignorant people and they should be taught about it I also agree with it.
    But I also notice that you are worked up while commenting almost all the time. It does not strike me as something “intellectual”. The person in front of you will only feel threatened, he will not appreciate that you are doing him a favour by enlightening him about something he has no knowledge about. If you have to pass your point to someone you need to tone down the rhetoric. A point can only be made when it is made by making the person in front of you feel at ease. Also remember the dumber the person in front of you the more intimidated he will get if you keep the rhetoric up, it is a normal human condition. And it will get into a positive feedback loop. If a kid in front of you says something extremely silly, it is up to you how to show him the way. Say for example, if you mention that an entire generation of the maratha warriors was wiped out defending the country from moslem invaders, the retard who would is by now already intimidated (please note, people who have little knowledge get intimidated faster) would say big deal, will put the point of the immense sacrifice aside and would say look: you did it once, we have been doing it since the time of Alexander the great, and then you are bound to not like it.
    There is no end to such things. Seriously.

    Let’s us just learn to make valid points without getting worked up. Getting angry is understandable. But getting it into a positive feedback loop is not acceptable in general, not for the individual, not for the society nor for the country.

    Marathis have always had a good name for being progressive. I am not going to quote some HUGE example, of how many died fighting where.
    Just a simple one.
    In Hindu religion, the bhoj after death is considered very important. After the tragic deaths of maratha fighters at the battle of panipat in under a day including Vishwasrao (who was slated to be installed on the Mughal throne after the engagement with the Afghans and Balochs at Panipat was over) and Rankoji Shinde. Balaji Baji Rao, the Peshwa at the time gave a bhoj. There were 100,000 pattals served. However he was the only one to eat, the rest were supposed to be for the spirits of the deceased. In hindu history it remains to be biggest bhoj ever. MUCH bigger than the times of Vikramaditya of Ujjain.
    Now you might wonder where is my point?
    Well this instance is always quoted in north india by people who know, as an example of what a pious hindu should do to bring peace to the deceased. (please note I am not talking about some religion or saying what is good in it, so don’t catch me with the fine print, my example is about how word spreads about deeds automatically.).

    Take Ahalya Bai Holkar of Indore. If you go to the Badrinath shrine or the Gangotri shrine, there are plaques still in marathi mentioning her name. As she was the one who made worthwhile temples of otherwise just landmarks after the tragic death of her husband. Everybody respects her.

    Everybody respects Lakhsmi Bai, (few people know that she was from near Jalgaon (khandesh) though and was only married to Jhansi.)

    You don’t have to get worked up with some meaningless comments by a retard. That person would definitely get more hard headed and nonsense (as I said earlier will be the case always with someone who is not upto the mark in knowledge, getting insecure is human). But putting your point through well is your responsibility, your method will be sure to draw a negative response and you are then bound to get incensed further. And the positive feedback loop now resulted is just a waste of time and energy, where no one will agree with anyone and will end up hating each other.

    For you comments on Raj Thackerey, I hear all of his speeches (complete sidenote: I am a great fan of the oratory of Balasaheb and Raj but little else), he has some fair points such as about Mumbai, Mumbai is definitely over strained.
    But the talk about his methods being wrong and points being right taken by his closet supporters is not correct in my humble opinion. These people are also driven by plain hate. The idea of mumbai etc came in later. The grandfather of Raj, Keshav Thackerey had written in 1922, throw these south and north indians out or they will chew your culture like a fag. Keshav T was known in his heydey as a progressive (in terms of promoting women’s education, opposing medieval practices against women, spreading education etc) but also as a hate monger. And I don’t think in 1922 Bombay was any better than some place like Calcutta for immigrants, it was not an issue really. I would not be surprised if a considerable component of mr Raj T’s politics is driven by that old hate embedded in his psyche, of which he might not even be aware of consciously.
    Just a thought. Please don’t take it personally.

    – S

  26. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 4, 2008 5:02 am

    Shubhendu, You have nicely put what you want to say. I really appreciate your advise.

    I am not sure what you meant by ‘worked up’. If we go by dictionary meaning of worked up i.e. ‘Excessively emotional, excited’ , then I guess, when people insult your culture, question your contributions, call you parochial then such response is natural.
    In most of these forums I found that North Indian readers do not really appreciate what Marathis have done. These SMS is a very good example of what and how they write and their understanding of Maharashtrians. Typically these contributors do not try to find out truth before commenting.

    Even if you keep Raj T and all Ts aside, questions of mass migration remains. Do you expect Marathis to remain silent till we lose all our citities? I believe that maintaining regiona (read cultural) balance is important for this country to survive. To avoid this hate shown by Raj T and his party serious discussion is needed in the parliament to address issue of this one way mass migration. Are people from North and their leaders ready for that? What do you think? Do you accept that this is an issue at first place?

  27. Thomas permalink
    December 4, 2008 11:14 am

    Raj Thackeray is a prejudiced human being only concerned about his political gain.He does not deserve any praise for creating communalism in Mumbai. The sms es are justified because they are just a retaliation to Raj’s own theories. I don’t mind saying this infront of him. What will he do to me.Who is he to do anything to me. Gundaism nahi chalega boss. MNS and Shivsena should be banned in India.They’re just like Like al qaieda. Bombay belongs to the country, not to maharashtrians. Bombay is what it is today because of INDIANs .

  28. December 4, 2008 11:25 am

    I see a fundamental flaw in this line: North Indian readers do not really appreciate what Marathis have done. . Would you really rope in ALL “north indian readers”?
    Recently (sometime ago that is, when the last railway recruitment board fiasco happened) I was scanning the Orkut community on Raj (I don’t have a presence on the social networking web-site orkut as I think it is a waste of time, but i do sometimes check responses), some people had said things like: There should be an earthquake in bhaiyaland and 500,000 should die immediately. Should one take it as a general statement by all “Marathis”? NO. Ofcourse not. I read similar SMS against north indians too.

    You know there is no end to these things. I did say that it is understandable if you get angry, but your response will determine where the situation will lead to. If it will cascade into a major problem or fade away. The problem with such debates is simple:
    When somebody says something derogatory, all people on the other side take it personally and start sloganeering. The the people on the opposite side the naturally respond.
    So a state is reached when nobody agrees with anybody, they just shut out their minds and everybody is sore and hate the people on the other side at the end of it. It is true.
    It is our responsibility to educate the talking class and it will definitely require loads of patience. The talking class is the problem class: they don’t know anything, but hold an opinion about everything. And hence compound the problem as they are bound to think emotionally than rationally. Maintaining patience is the only way out, everything else is bound to complicate it further in my opinion. It is a very delicate issue almost bordering chaos. (By the way have a look at this video, I sure you would like it. Just three additional variables give such a chaotic response. Imagine if there were 1000 variables. The response would have been unimaginable and unpredictable. That is how societies work (with the number of variables very high in unstructured environments) I hope you got my tacit point on how delicate these things are.).

    I agree wholeheartedly that the flood of unskilled migrant labors is a big issue. And since the majority of these laborers is unskilled and uneducated they are bound to engage more frequently in anti-social activities and also engage in disrespect of the culture they have taken refuge in. I also agree that the city of Mumbai is at breaking point. It is nowhere at the level of the big cities of the world( I have been to Los Angeles, Shanghai, Marsielle, Paris) and the reason for that is just what i said above without doubt.

    You know, whatever said and done, this will never stop. These people would come risking their lives and respect to mumbai anyhow. There is only one solution to it. It is high time that the North and Eastern states of India get developed. The laborers would just stop then. It could take a lot of time. But before that happens, this migration might just continue. If they stop coming to mumbai, they might eat up Delhi which they are already doing. In the end, every man will want a decent living, and would go to any place that seems promising to him.

    We need political will to look at this problem, first to acknowledge that there is a serious problem and then work systematically to eliminate it. The state of U.P for example was the number one state till the time of Gobind Ballabh Pant (who was a marathi by the way, the first CM of U.P), it turned into a laggard state by the end of the 70s onwards. We would probably need 10 years to improve this situation. The condition in U.P is bad, but the condition in Bihar is worse.
    But in the end to be frank there is no solution to this problem till the political class in the national level politics in India do something serious about the development of these states. Development is the only solution. And this development could be modelled on the lines of Gujarat, Punjab or Haryana.

    Also one ending point:
    Again on Raj, he is a charismatic figure in terms of personality. Even “marathi” people who would not like his politics would be drawn to him. It is a fact. Is there any leader in Maharashtra other than Sharad Pawar who can match his charisma? No one. Maybe even sharad Pawar lacks that charisma to attract people by words.

    My point: The guy is smart and charismatic. He won’t live forever. Instead of pissing on everyone’s corn flakes, he could invest his energy and anger to do some high-quality work for the country. People like him can bring about fundamental change in the country that we want. He seems too focused on leaving bitter words instead of great work as a legacy. What a talent to be wasted.

    – S

  29. December 4, 2008 11:27 am

    Lady Nita,
    I again have a request. Please remove my surname from the previous comment, I by mistake posted it while being logged on.
    There is a reason related to grad school for that.
    Sorry for the trouble once again.

  30. sangeeta permalink
    December 4, 2008 11:40 am

    Well Thomas,continue living in a fools paradise then….

  31. December 4, 2008 12:30 pm

    I do not intend to ‘beat the dead horse’ here but I am surely wondering if it is time for us to go back and revisit the fundamentals and start focussing on our strengths and the good things in life. I would think that we cannot control what others do but we could control what we do.

  32. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 5, 2008 1:55 am


    Yes. I agree with your theory of Chaos. There is no point in making strong statements. We need to be patient. But how long is the real question. Maharashtra govt has already raised this issue.Where is initiative from North (UP and Bihar)? If you read different forums you will find more people from North (obviously must be from these states) blaming MH govt, Ts than to Lalu Prasad, Mayawati. Unless they put pressure on their leaders I don’t see that these UP, Bihar leaders will accept this issue. We can be patient till then but how far is this ‘then’?
    I was hoping that Sharad Pawar will take this to Central leadership after I watched interview of Praful Patel.
    Raj T is nowhere near Pawar, Patel, RR Patil etc. But then why is he getting support and making these big names restless? Is it not because people on the street are losing patience and they see someone representing them?

    Who in this country is truly national and working for this country? Can you name a few?

  33. stud.boy99 permalink
    December 5, 2008 10:18 pm

    Hi people,

    i was looking at various comments above…

    someone said, look MH people have done so much, and they were not given as much in return … (might be wrong or might be true)

    then, on another post, someone said south indians are more capable than north indians… (this is parochial, or shud i say communal, and generalizing the facts)

    and that made me wonder, whats behind this thought of “sense of unjustice”… is it only the misgivings of government (which is not specific to anyone, i believe largely they have screwed everyone of us equally)…

    and also i noticed that this thought is coming up especially after 1970s…

    pls notice, 1970s are the times when the smaller political parties were “born” after the emergency imposed by Indira Gandhi… parties like shiv sena, BJP, janta dal, etc got the power only after the emergency…

    I think this “sense of injustice and repraisal” is coming not only from the shortcomings of the government to raise the quality of life in india, but also fanned/supported/originated the localised politicians who had to secure their small pockets of influence…by whatever means.

    If someone says Raj T apologised but Lalu did not…he means “my-politician” aplogized and obliged the outsiders, and “displayed” his “love-for-country”, so “your-politician” should make “equally-apologetic-statements to oblige “my-people”

    i m not trying to say that lalu shud or shud not apologise but i am trying to say that these are all the characterstics of identity politics.

    1. If I tend to think that my identity is of a XYZ as against to being an Indian, then anyone who is not XYZ will have to continously prove his “love/respect” to XYZ people to make sure that I do not suspect him/her to be my enemy.

    2. Anyone from within XYZ community will automatically work for XYZ.. no one within community should ask questions over their intentions. If anyone from within XYZ community asks questions he fears that may be termed as betraying the community. If anyone from outside questions the intentions, that calls for a community wide reaction against the outsider.

    3. No one from “outside” is elegible to lead the XYZ community, no matter what his/her capablities/ideas/knowledge/personality are.

    You can replace XYZ with any community based on caste/region/religion/language/lineage. And check who all are saying those statements. You will know who is playing identity politics in India. And if you notice, all the three characterstics perfectly secure the influence of these “communal politicians” even if they fail to deliver.

    What i do not like about this thought of “identity politics” is that it gives more importance of “being similar” (by being born into same community or speaking same language, practicing the same religion etc) with some XYZ community as against checking the actions the leaders/politicisns take on a continous basis and removing the politicians if they are not doing their actions properly. In a democracy we have to be continously checking what the politicians do, just giving the baton to “within-XYZ-community” will not solve the problem at all. Rather that thought gives rise to suspicions and mistrust within communities.

    And coming to the original comments that i said about “having-the-sense-of-injustice” is originated/permeated only after some sections of people are made to beleive that they belong more to XYZ community than they belong to India. and others are trying to hurt the XYZ community.

    There have been many studies over identity politics in india, I found one link which i am presenting here…

  34. stud.boy99 permalink
    December 6, 2008 3:24 am

    another factor in this entire episode of “identity politics” is the role of local media (which is either governed by local/communal politicians or it is “sensationlizing-the-facts” to garner readership)

    if i do not talk to people from other religions/regions/castes etc in my daily life, and if i access only the local media around me… then i might never know what is actually happening in other parts of india, and i will not be able to judge what news are being sensationlised and what news are real.


    I think nationalistic politicians are not a “difficult-to-see-around-breed” that we have a man-hunt for one of them and make him/her sit in CM’s/PM’s position…

    I hear many people saying that there are not many politicians who are not communal… which might be true. But we should rather ask the Q that… are we somehow asking/allowing our leaders/politicians to be communal? are we supporting the communal politicians and rejecting the nationalistic ones?

    Today we might not be find any single politician who is nationalistic if we do not actively support the nationalistic ideas ourselves, and if we do not actively reject the communal politians around us.

    And I think politicians do respond to people’s views… see they have been very cautious to give out any “communal” messages since the mumbai tragedy, just notice every communal politician around you… so, all we have to do is to change ourselves.

    I think we need to make the “communal views” as “unfashionable” in our daily lives.

  35. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 6, 2008 7:58 am

    Stud boy,
    Thoughful comments by you.

    What is nationalism?
    What is regionalism?
    Do people raising regional issues always become anti national?
    Can people raising regional issues still be nationalist?
    Who is a national politician?
    Is local synonymous with communal?
    Is local media always controlled by govt?
    Is local media always communal?
    What is national media?
    What is a regional media?
    Is regional media always wrong and national is always right?
    Is Hindi always national and Marathi, Bengali etc always regional?

  36. permalink
    December 6, 2008 11:10 am


    you’ve asked me so many questions. If I understand correctly, I think the basic theme that comes out from all of your questions is.. If someone is thinking at regional level and at regional problems, does it automatically becomes anti-national?

    I would say, thinking and acting on the issues which one face on the local level does not become anti-national if they do not intersect with the nation’s objectives and nation’s well-being, or patriotic feelings of every Indian.

    But while solving the local issue, if i discriminate between the various people of india, on the basis of caste/religion/region/language or any other means, then it becomes anti-national.

    Let’s say, if i am protesting that the state government should spend more money on building a roads/infrastructure in a region.. this is a valid regional issue and its not anti-national. But if someone kills/beats up every labourer who did not speak a particular language and because he was ready to work for lower wages while building that road, then it becomes anti-national. Or if the local government politician wants to employ only “some-specific-language-speaking” people, then it becomes anti-national too. Pl notice, i am only taking a hypothetical case here.

    so, while solving a local problem let me not create national-level problems. let me myself not step on the rights of others, and let me not forget my responsibilities which we are given to me as Indian.

    Let me judge the people by checking what they do and what they say, not by what languages they speak and what part of india they come from, or which castes they are from; and i should use that measure to judge common people, and politicians too.

    If some hindi-speaking person in say UP or delhi, discriminates against marathi speaking people, its wrong/unlawful/unjust/anti-national. If someone in MH beats up a bihari for existing in this world, its wrong too.

    Good people come from all parts of india, and bad people come from everywhere too (yes, it was important to say the second statement). I should have the judgment to see that through, without basing my judgment on his/her caste/religion/region etc. and i should not generalize based on caste/religion/region etc without proper reasoning.

    So, marathi/bengali or any other language are not “always” regional. i noticed many good articles do get published in marathi/bengali newspapers which discuss the problems of the land. but if a newspaper promotes “identity politics” while discussing anything, then it becomes anti-national.

    so, that’s how i understand it. i hope i was able to answer your questions.

  37. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 7, 2008 5:27 am

    Stud boy, Thanks for answering in detail. I think that’s we also think.
    Raising issues of Marathi people does not qualify as Identity issue. I think this is a national issue. It should be looked as issue between any two states (read cultures). If it is happening today between MH and Bihar today it may happen between any states tomorrow.

  38. December 7, 2008 7:36 am


  39. Dnyanesh permalink
    December 8, 2008 1:47 am

    It looks like you are the one who wrote these SMSs 🙂

  40. blumen permalink
    December 8, 2008 5:01 pm

    Nita, I agree with you that this SMS has no place in the civilized society. I hold the newspaper (Times) to task as it should not print any remark which is derogatory and which results in dividing the people on regional basis.
    The media is a powerful tool which can help in bringing all Indians closer and strengthening our nation. Sadly, our print and visual media have taken upon themselves to take part in this ‘Hate campaign.’
    My reply to these sick SMSes is that though there are people staying in Mumbai from different parts of India– Have a heart for –the Mumbai police,the Fire Brigade personnel and the Railway announcer who were mostly Maharashtrians –who died for everybody-Maharashtrians and non-Maharashtrians of Mumbai without hesitation.
    Those who write such SMSes are cowards who are having a laugh behind our backs.Shame on them, including the Times of India for publishing this SMS.
    If Mumbaikars really feel they have the spirit then they should help the poor policemen’s families through monetary help, giving them jobs and looking after their children. Don’t forget ‘These people gave us their today for our tomorrow.’

  41. vasudev permalink
    December 9, 2008 3:54 pm

    It all goes on to prove that the fabric of India is slowly but surely getting torn by the politicians. Till the vote crazy politicians got on to destroying the basic fabric we never even felt that anyone would ever think twice about condemning the attack on the commercial capital of our country. But now see? people have learnt to isolate themselves from indianess…it is now regionalism. Soon it will become state specific. When IT hit India this indianess disappeared. When Bangalore did well Hyderabad had its pangs and soon the pangs spread to Pune. There came a competition of which state will do better and we forgot that we were indians. It is so easy now to forget that you are an indian and why not? Indians have tasted the international waters and found dollars, pounds and euros to be more palatable that the rupee…such is the general mnd trend. Why should not a neo-money and power hingry indian find Mumbai as alien as Karachi or…as indifferently convenient? Money speaks the new language of the neo-rich, neo-cultured indian mind.

  42. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 16, 2008 5:52 pm

    In times like this it seems natural for people to be emotionally sensitive. This reminds me of the reaction of a vast majority of the gujarati people when the national press was reporting the massacre of Muslims in 2002. A huge protest was made that the whole media, nay the whole nation, was against Gujarat. NM rode to power on such sentiments. Would you justify he hurt of the Gujaratis? I am myself a Gujarati, but would not justify this feeling that a hate campaign was & is on against Gujarat & Gujaratis. I am sure you will agree with me on this. But I can understand your feeling of hurt as a Maharashtrian for the words chosen in the SMS. But I assure you that a vast majority of the non-Marathi speaking people living in Maharashtra don’t think insultingly about the State & its people. Love is what they have received form the State & love is what they are giving in return. Just as Raj T & his supporters are just in minority and best neglected, the hate-mongers are also in a minority and are best neglected. Whatever way we interpret the SMSs, we are all united with you in bidding farewell to all ideas and actions that cause a divide.

    Dr. Dhruv, I do not believe that a hate campaign is on, and I am sorry if I gave that impression. 🙂 I live in MH and interact mostly with non-maharashtrians so I well know their feelings. It is certainly not hate. there is a hate campaign on against Raj Thackeray, and I cannot stand him myself! My intention of this post was to show that while attacking Raj Thackeray, people attacked maharashtrians due to the offensive wording of the sms and it made me angry that people forward stuff without even reading it properly. and this came at a senstive time as you said. – Nita

  43. Dr Nishith N Dhruv permalink
    December 16, 2008 7:47 pm

    //These SMS’s just prove that a hate campaign against Maharashtra and Maharashtrians is on.//
    Nita, these are your words! I am glad that you don’t actually believe that! Actually, sometime after the attack we were operating on a patient. The operating surgeon was Dr Bhat(a marathi manus) and I(a guju) was just there to help him. Both of us expressed the same sentiment : someone should tell RT that the commandoes who saved us surely must have been from various parts of India – not only from Maharashtra. At the same time the local policemen who laid down their lives did so to protect us irrespective of which region we hail from, which language we speak & which religion we follow. I assure you, we are not sick – rather we treat the sick! But I agree that this was not the time to send such SMSs. Also there are as many Rajs in other regions as they are in Maharashtra – perhaps more! Let us all sideline them and their ideologies.

    true Dr. Dhruv, but as I recieved comments I changed my mind. I wrote that post in an explosive mood. 🙂 When I recieved comments I did mellow my stand quite a bit but I don’t blame you if you have not read the comments! There are too many. thanks for your response, and welcome back. Hope you will be commenting here off and on with some regularity as I really valued your comments on the language issue. Also expressing a sentiment in a private conversation is very different from sending mass sms’s which is what a lot of people did. At a time of crises all Indians need to stand together, and I mean all, including casteist and communal politicians.- Nita

  44. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    December 17, 2008 9:28 am


    //…thinking and acting on the issues which one face on the local level does not become anti-national if they do not intersect with the nation’s objectives and nation’s well-being, or patriotic feelings of every Indian.//

    I would like to know who decides when a local issue intersects “the nation’s well-being”, and what is “anti-national”? Who decides what are or should be the patriotic feelings of every Indian?

    My own perception of what the “patriotic” scoundrels call nationalism in the Indian context is that it is the regionalism of the Hindi-speaking north imposed on the whole country.

    For that matter, what is a “nation”? (And please, I would like an answer informed by sobre thinking and an understanding of history, society and political processes; not by cheap, popular, third-rate, melodramatic regurgitation of emotions imitative of Bollywood trash).

  45. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 17, 2008 4:40 pm

    Nita, thanks. I always find that you always maintain a fair balance. I totally agree with you that this is not the time to send such messages. I guess all tend to explode in response to such situations but as time passes and saner thinking prevails change their views.

    • December 20, 2008 8:14 am

      Dr. Dhruv, thanks. However I am not sure whether I was clear in my previous comment. While this time was not the right time to sent the message, which you agree with there is another thing. I have not changed my mind about the wording of the sms. It was cheaply written and targeted the maharashtrian community as a whole. The only thing I realised was that not all people who forwarded it realised what they were sending, and did not bother really to check the words. The people who wrote it certainly were targeting maharashtrians as a community, there is no doubt in my mind about that. Anyone who reads the sms objectively will realise that. I am sure that even in your private conversation with a maharashtrian colleague you did not use words like that used in the sms.

  46. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 17, 2008 11:33 pm

    Vivek: “Nation is a large group of people united by a common language, ancestry, history or culture. People often feel great loyalty to their nation and pride in their national characteristics. A state is an area of land whose people have an independent government. A nation-state exists if a nation and a state have the same boundries. In international law, nation means a group of people exercising self-government within a defined territory with the recognition of other nations.” These statements have been taken from the world book encyclopedia.

  47. Vivek S. Khadpekar permalink
    December 20, 2008 10:48 am

    Dr. Dhruv: I am aware of the textbook definitions of nation, State, and nation-state. My problem is that many of the self-appointed arbitrators on these matters (you will find quite a few of them visiting this blog) are not aware. And they (and their boot-licking fellow-travellers) are the ones who sit in judgement on the credentials of others, prescribe a normative, homogeneous “national” culture, lay down the “non-negotiable” criteria of nationalism, patriotism etc.

    As far as I am concerned, those of us who are really Indians simultaneously live in a multiplicity of identities, each appropriate to its own existential niche. Those who want to bulldoze us into a homogeneous entity by ramming their own definitions and values down our throats are in effect destroying India, and for that reason they themselves must be made under duress to embrace what they insist on branding as the Other.

  48. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 22, 2008 11:02 pm

    Nita, we sure didn’t use such words. And I find such comments always insulting. It is not the language of civilized people.

  49. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 22, 2008 11:27 pm

    Dear Vivek, I agree with you that we have multiple identities and that fact cannot be avoided. But by definition, for us to claim an Indian identity we should have a common language or ancestry or history or culture. And in that search sometimes people tend to drift into ideas that almost smell of dictatorial homogenization knowingly or unknowingly. I wonder why the definition doesn’t mention a common religion! I feel we have a common history that binds us together as a nation. And out of the several cultures and traditions that have enriched our nation we can yet churn out a few characteristics that we can claim as a composite Indian culture. And the most remarkable characteristic, according to me, is tolerance and allowing people to live according to their ways of life. Perhaps this forum will provide us different views on this interesting topic. I do feel that people have their own notions of what a nation or a nation state means. Ideas emanating from these notions may provoke strong reactions. But discussions and debates carried out with an open mind and in tampered tones are sometimes capable of bringing about a change in those notions. I would request you to give your views about nation & nation-states. Nita, sorry if it is felt that this is going off the track. You may of course put an end to that!

  50. December 23, 2008 2:16 pm

    I would perhaps say:

    Army, NSG commandoes comprise of Indians from all over the country, and they are fighting and laying down their life for Mumbaikars.
    Really? You know what? In Raj T’s dictionary Mumbaikar = Marathi Manoos. Because Mumbaikar is as much a marathi word as the term Marathi Manoos and he has freely used it while targetting the north indains in Mumbai, thereby effectively allowing them to use it against him. Therefore, in this particular instance it’s clearly meant for him. You being a “raj-hater” should have been able to see thru this.

    Akhil, I am not a Raj-hater to tell you frankly because I think he is just a worm who doesn’t deserve much attention. I have never heard a single speech of Raj T and I get comments telling me to hear him before I condemn him. Frankly I am not interested in Raj T because I do not think he is relevant to the politics of MH as much as the media has made him out to be. And no I do not think using the word ‘marathi manoos’ in the same way as Raj T was something very smart or sensitive. Thanks for your views. – Nita.

  51. Dr N N Dhruv permalink
    December 23, 2008 6:47 pm

    I think we should stop being obsessed with RT’s dictionary. Why should we bother about what the word Marathi Manoos means to him? Nita has briefly and ably summarized the tremendous contributions made by eminent Marathi Manoos in the vast fabric of our national life. That is what we should know, cherish and respect. I am a Gujarati born in Mumbai and after spending 26 years in Mumbai have settled in a remote place in Maharashtra. When I came I was a total stranger. But all the ‘Marathi Manoos’ (Nita, please don’t get offended by my use of this term – but I use it always as a mark of love & respect for the culture which the word represents) have welcomed me in their midst and accepted me as their own. I am sure that happens everywhere in India and I consider it as one of the features of the composite Indian culture. Let no one think ill of Marathi Manoos as a whole owing to the misdeeds of a few. Such misdeeds happen everywhere and anywhere in our country – that should not make us pass any scornful comments on the whole people of the state.

    • December 23, 2008 8:19 pm

      Thank you Dr. Dhruv for your kind and warm words. That is all that I wanted people to feel with this post. That we are all one, and we are all Indians. We should not get affected by a few crank politicians who will always come and go.

  52. permalink
    March 5, 2009 11:54 pm

    sorry Nita for a late reply, i am not a regular visitor on this, maybe i should visit it more regularly 🙂

    @ Vivek Khadpekar

    ** self-appointed arbitrators on these matters (you will find quite a few of them visiting this blog) are not aware. And they (and their boot-licking fellow-travellers) **

    self-appointed arbitrator.. and boot-licking fellow-travellers…wow, you’ve resorted to name-calling to raise your pitch and you’re hopelessly trying to prove something… for the record, no one is a boot-licker here, and no one is an arbitator, we are just sharing thoughts without hate and prejudice for anyone, i can say that this particular blog is free of such hate messages, and thanks nita for ensuring that… and while you were trying to insult others, you’ve just insulted yourself mate…

    and you’ve asked me a definition of a nation, rather i want to ask you what is the definition of sub-nationalism and super-regionalism.

    so vivek, as i said, your hate-mongering does not work here, it might work on illiterate marathi folks who might be gullible to this (but i really hope that they have understood the things especially after 26/11)…By the way, just out of curiosity, are you associated with MNS??, coz u sound like one..

  53. Milind Kher permalink
    March 6, 2009 12:31 am

    Mumbai was actually built by the Parsis and Gujaratis. The “Marathi Manoos” did not play much of a role there.

    However, in all fairness to him, he never created any obstacles and was always friendly to people who came from outside the state.

  54. March 31, 2009 6:46 pm

    dear friends ,\
    after reading all your messages i came to the conclusion that
    1. we all have feelings & emotions and we feel bad when it is hurt.
    2. in spite of all our glorious past it is fact that we were slave for 1000 years.
    3. if we are easily divided by small sms ,coments or cheap politicians then we should be prepared to be again slaves in the hands of foreigners
    4.we all are Indians first ,i am not teaching but i love all of you .

  55. A B Fakhtar permalink
    June 6, 2009 2:40 pm

    Raj Thackeray is a politician who is not innovative. To build up a reputation he is trying to take away his uncle hriday samrat status.

    The problem with Raj T’s speech is that he is not categorical. For the people who do not understand the polity of India in depth, they take Raj T’s word very literally and feel nervous that they will not be allowed to come to Mumbai if the need so arises out of professional pursuit.

    Raj T should have been more categorical. Raj T’s school of politics is very dangerous too. I dont wanna comment on some of the recent alliances of the MNS.

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