BJP plans to change Bhopal's name to Bhojpal!

Will Bhopal become Bhojpal?

Will the State government give assent to the moves afoot by local BJP leaders to rename Bhopal in the memory of Raja Bhoj and change the name of the City to Bhojpal?

Local  BJP MLA Vishwas Sarang is most vocal and is pressing for it. Some other BJP leaders are also pushing for the name change.

Already there is controversy as the statue of Raja Bhoj has been installed in Bhopal. Interestingly, it is erected on the 'burj' that was constructed by during the reign of Dost Mohammad Khan, the founder of the Bhopal dynasty.

Raja Bhoj is said to have ruled this part of Madhya Pradesh nearly 1,000 years ago. The Bhojpur temple near Bhopal is said to be constructed during his rule. With other political parties and local residents flaying the initiative, the controversy is heating up.

Citizens aren't much excited about the proposed change of name, as the word  Bhojpal was not used locally though locals in Madras called their City 'Chennai' and so was the case in Calcutta, Bombay and Bangalore which were known by their present names in local language.


Bhopal's Shame: BMHRC doctors conducted drug trials on gas victims, patients died

The doctors at the Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre unlawfully conducted drug trials on gas victims without their knowledge and this resulted in deaths of as many as 10 patients.

This horrific news has stunned citizens. Though drug trials were banned, the NGOs fighting for gas victims have presented documents accessed through RTI that cardiologist Dr Skand Trivedi, Dr Subodh Varshney and Dr HK Pandey were involved in this unethical practice that should have stopped in 2008.

The wife of Nasir Khan, who died recently, said that her family was not aware that Khan was subjected to the illegal drug trial and tested for results of Clopidrogel drug. The role of BMHRC administration has also come under scanner after the revelation that trials of the medicines Televancian, Fondaparinux and Tigecycline were held on patients.

Gas victims' groups allege that the consultants at the hospital made Rs 10 million or Rs 1 crore which they obtained from pharmaceutical companies in lieu of these drug testings. The Institutional Review Board secretary is the wife of Dr Skand Trivedi and she gave permission to trials though the Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) was aware of just one drug trial in the hospital. The NGOs want criminal charges to be pressed and case registered against these doctors.

The BMHRC was established to provide free treatment to patients and sufferers of the horrific gas tragedy. In 1984 leakage of deadly MIC gas from US company Union Carbide's Bhopal plant had resulted in over 25,000 deaths and other ailments to nearly half-a-million residents of the City.

Ironically the victims were treated as guinea pigs and drug trials conducted on them at the behest of international pharma companies who generally don't get permissions to hold trials with such ease in other countries.

Sex Sting: BJP leader's MMS scandal in Mandsaur shakes party

BJP leader Karu Lal Soni has been caught in an sex sting in Madhya Pradesh. The MMS scandal has shaken the party as images of Soni in compromising situation with a woman have been circulated in the State.

The party has decided to suspend Soni, 60, who is BJP district chief in Mandsuar. He was earlier associated with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad also.

Soni has claimed that he is innocent and has been framed. He told media persons that his rivals have morphed his face to create the pornographic video clip. The incident has badly hit the image of BJP as a party legislator's son was arrested for rape in Mandsaur a day back.

[Note: Though the newspaper carried his photograph, we are being more responsible and have blurred the face.]

MLA's nephew accused of rape, court sends him to jail

BJP MLA Yashpal Singh Sisodia's nephew Dharmendra who was accused of raping a girl in Mandsaur has finally been arrested.

Dharmendra who was absconding for months, surrendered in the court. The rape accused was sent to the jail on judicial custody.

The girl had alleged that she was raped but after her complaint, the police had slapped three separate criminal cases on her. She was falsely implicated and harassed under pressure but after media reports regarding the administration's efforts to harass the rape victim, the local police were forced to change track. Dharmendra Sisodia is now in jail.


Conversion Conundrum: MP Christians fearful as RSS holding Narmada Kumbh in Mandla

Christians in Madhya Pradesh are scared that the upcoming Narmada Maha Kumbh that is being organised in Mandla could inflame passions and lead to anti-Christian violence in the district.

The circulation of communally provocative pamphlets that target Christian missionaries have led to increased tensions. The Christian organisations fear that the Kumbh  was organised in Gujarat's Dangs earlier.

Dangs was the district that had seen large-scale violence and now a similar event in Madhya Pradesh can trigger attacks on their homes. Already there have been some incidents including attack on a pastor in Mandla last month.

Lakhs of participants are expected to attend the programme named Maa Narmada Samajik Kumbh where the focus will be on religious conversion and 'ghar vapasi' or homecoming. Hindutva groups want tribals to turn to Hinduism.

But local tribals and the popular party Gondwana Gantantra Party (GGP) claim that tribals are not Hindus and have their own deities. The Gonds cite court judgments to prove that they are original inhabitants and have their own culture.

The BJP government has 'unofficially' alotted funds and the entire official machinery is at the disposal of the organisers. The fact is that RSS and Christians are fighting over the millions of tribals as both want to convert them to their respective faiths. 

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