• “A TDP MP Issues a Fatwa to Kill Me and the Telangana, Andhra and Central Governments Say Nothing”

    Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd

    September 21, 2017

    Kancha Ilaiah / Image courtesy: Sabrang India


    TG Venaktesh, an extremist Arya Vysya leader held a press conference on September 18 in a luxury hotel in Hyderabad with an extremist, conspiratorial Arya Vysya team and declared a ‘fatwa’ that he would kill or hang me in the streets as they do in the Middle East. This person is an MP from the TDP and supposed to be the richest man after Gandi Madhava Rao (GMR) from that community in the two Telugu states. Can a Parliament member who issues a fatwa against a citizen that too a globally known writer and thinker continue in Parliament as member? It is for the BJP and TDP to decide.

    The myth that the Arya Vysya community is a peace-loving, non-violent community proved to be wrong. This is clear from the violent statements that their leaders are issuing. It is also clear from their abusive and vulgar behavior on the streets from village to cities up to the state capitals, Amaravati and Hyderabad. They are indulging in vandalism. Both the states are freely allowing them to the point of creating a law and order situation. They seem to have no respect for judiciary also.

    The Arya Vysya are the most organized caste in India holding 46 per cent of the total wealth and 48 per cent of company directors’ posts. The Ambani group, Adani group, Laxmi Mittal, Vedanta and so on are all part of this community. This is the only community that has a bank called Vysya Bank in their caste name in India.

    For writing a chapter in my book Post-Hindu India with a chapter titled ‘Social Smugglers’ — a concept I coined to capture caste, cultural and economic exploitation in India and translating it into Telugu they are attacking me. I have been fighting for reservation in the private sector for long time as there are no jobs in the state sector at all.

    We are now demanding in the T-MASS (Telanga all peoples) meetings an organization formed three months ago, jobs for all the kith and kin of the lowest level soldiers serving on the borders of Pakistan, and China and also in the internal security sectors. We are asking for at least one job for each family in their private firms, a token of their nationalism, without going into the merit question that they have been raising all the time.

    We are also demanding that as part of their corporate social responsibility, at least one percent of their total profit be set aside for farmers’ fund for the survival of the dying farmers across the country. This is necessary because the state and central governments say they are not in a position to protect farmers because of paucity of funds. Farmer suicides are taking place all over India.

    Issuing a Middle East type of fatwa by the Parliament member with a backing of the ruling establishments both at the state and the national level is a dangerous trend. This fatwa is issued under the very nose of Telangana government. I am living in Telangana state. The government is silent giving an impression of complicity. Since September 10 till date I have been receiving numerous orchestrated phone calls with abuses and vulgar SMSs. This is only to drive me crazy. Everyone knows that Airtel and Reliance companies are in their hands.

    Any intellectual who stands by the Dalit bahujans and the poor and asks for some jobs in their private companies gets fatwas of killing and hanging in the streets of India by one of the richest persons and a parliament member. The country and its very democracy and freedom of speech that the constitution guarantees are in real danger. Perhaps I may be the first person to die like that.

    I demand to know why the Telangana, Andhra and central governments are silent in the face of this public call for me to be killed.

    Based on this fatwa I can seek asylum in any country. But I am a nationalist with reverence to Buddha and Ambedkar. I would like to live and die here only. I hope the nation responds. Though filing a case seems to have no effect but I will file a case in the local police station on this fatwa soon.         


    Kancha Ilaiah is an Indian political theorist, Writer, activist and fight for oppressed classes, weaker sections in india.

    First published in Sabrang India

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