Now when FISA attacks my initiative… I detail what I‘d rather avoid.

This blog results due to claims made by FISA spokesperson in Herald Sun about a visit that I had organised for a group of Indian journalists on behalf of the Victorian Universities. Hence need to provide the requisite clarifications.

On 5th February, in my blog I had attempted at exposing the incorrect assessment of many that FISA Inc was a representative voice of the Indian Community in Australia. I had also detailed the missing links that indicated that there was something else that was the agenda in the whole game and summarised that the “Gupta” was not a “Gautam”. (see the linked blog).
.
On 21st February, one of the more respected newspapers, THE AGE, carried a detailed exposure of this “SECRETive BUDDHA”. Am not providing any quotes here since I do want all of you to click on this link and see the similarities of the exposure through my blog with the exposure by THE AGE. I express my sincerest appreciation to the correspondent. Hopefully more media setups will question Gupta’s integrity now and will question the formation of the four lettered FISA.
.
Not all will. Gupta has found support in the Opposition Party and an audience with newspapers like Herald Sun. Both are no surprises.  Taking help from Wikipedia, I detail the rise of GUPTA rule in India and the advice that Chanakya, the mentor to Chandragupta and certainly the Guru to all Politicians would give:
.
Chānakya (Sanskrit: चाणक्य akya) (c. 350–283 BCE) was an adviser and prime minister to the first Maurya Emperor Chandragupta (c. 340-293 BCE), and was the chief architect of his rise to power.
The phrase the enemy of my enemy is my friend is a proverb that advances the concept that someone who is the enemy of your enemy is therefore your friend. It further means that because two parties have a common enemy, one can use the other to advance their goals.
.
However, In the case of the Gupta that some Indians in OZ are likening to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, while an attempt is being made to use the enemy of his enemy, there is going to be big gaps. The Opposition Party will soon realise that the Indian Community is not buying the theory put forward by GG who likens himself as Mandela and Gandhi to great amusement of many. This GG also tends to believe that all those who lived prior to 1947 in India were SLAVES… Such a poor understanding of Indian history will not find support with any sensible intellectuals who understand what SLAVERY is. The Opposition leaders who are hoping for the migrant votes (interestingly, the current Federal Government too had banked on Migrant votes a few years ago when it had attacked the policies of the Howard Government.) will soon realise that the temporary residents who seem to have been used by GG donot have a vote and the settled Indians are not in support of the theories prescribed even though all want Victorian Police to act against street crime.
.
It’s indeed POLITICS and in the election year, truth will remain quite sullied.
.
Herald Sun carries an article where the Opposition Leader has attacked the OZ Government for undertaking PR activities from budgets kept for PR and bringing in journalists to Australia. See link.
.
I will let the Australian Tax Payers decide (I am one too) if OZ needed to bring “real” journalists to Australia and let them write from their actual experience considering that most of the media coverage in India was a result of second hand journalism and from feeders. Real Journalists do indeed make some very uncomfortable. I was involved in one such visit that has been quoted in the article and hence do need to put some substance to paper. The Journalists have always had the freedom to write what they want. This is referred to as “journalistic freedom”. I would not liken it to “junket journalism” which is the forte of corporate bodies. Almost all journalists got to visit sensitive areas and on their own terms. They got to meet “attacked” students and ask whatever questions that they may have had to anyone and were never asked to push one-sided stories. They visited Gurudwaras and met with students and Indians on random in addition to the respected Master Darshan Singh and the team and articulate Counsellor from the Indian Sikh Community Harvin Dhillon. They interacted with Indian officials at the Consulates and the High Commission. They walked into University campuses and asked students on random.
.
This is why I have a clear problem with the following comments made by Mr GG on 23rd February 2010:
.
Another delegation of Indian reporters, whose trip was financed by universities, was treated to a cricket session at Monash University with former Test skipper Graham Yallop.
“These (IMV visits) are just marketing junkets paid for by the taxpayer,” said Federation of Indian Students of Australia secretary Gautam Gupta.
The comfort and entertainment being lavished on the Indian journalists, and the tightly scripted itinerary, was designed to gloss over the attacks on Indian students that have seen Indian media outlets paint Melbourne as racist and sparked a diplomatic crisis.
Mr Gupta said only the top universities were on the list to be visited by the Indian reporters and, apart from seeing railway stations at St Albans and Footscray, the journalists were kept from areas and people that would negatively affect their coverage.
“They are never taken to the colleges which collapse and they are never taken to the victims of assault,” he said.
Mr Gupta said the reporters were hosted at five-star hotels and given soft diplomacy such as tours of the MCG and tickets to live shows.
.
As a key organiser of this quoted visit, I confirm, that the visit was indeed sponsored by the Universities who needed to differentiate between the quality of some private colleges and the Universities considering that the media in India had forgotten that Australia did indeed have some very fine Universities that secure good ratings worldwide.  The visitors still were taken to TAFE providers such as NMIT (where another counsellor from Indian community Mr Tim Singh provided his candid views about the attacks) and they visited private vocational colleges such as Academia and Pivot Point to see the Hairdressing and Cookery students. If Monash has excellent training facilities for sport people and the journalists got an exposure to the nets there, is it wrong. Indians are known for their love for Cricket and so will visit Cricket nets and not Baseball fields…
.
The journalists (and I) took an unstructured trainride on the western line in Melbourne at 10 pm and on Saturday and went right past Footscray upto Sunshine which was termed as notorious. We did get out of the station and went for a walk around the area and actually missed our return train. Journalists were able to talk to Pizza delivery boys and also encounter the drunken behaviour of teenagers at that time. Therefore, doesn’t Gautam Gupta, once again edging on sensationalism in tandem with what he has always done, make the accusation.
.
Journalists did tour MCG, which all first time visitors to Melbourne do and there is nothing news-worthy here to criticise about. The visit to MCG highlighted the role Cricket Australia is playing in building bridges between the communities through their various schemes over the years.
.
The journalists actually also met with an attack victim too who had been highlighted in Indian press and got him some assistance through our gracious Consulate General, Ms Anita Nayar.
.
Hence, where has this man got his facts and how can he keep going to the “some” media and selling the rot to them, again and again? Why does the media not crosscheck his comments to discover the man as a liar or as Gandhi.
.
I have met with Gautam a few times and have had courteous communications too. I had expectations from him and hence had avoided talking so openly about his antics till early Feb simply in hope that he will correct himself sooner than later. Had advised him too. Gautam, you have let me down as you have let down many other Indians. While Pauline Hanson’s migration to UK is Australian Gain Britain’s loss, Gautam Gupta’s taking up of Aussie citizenship by giving up Indian nationality is India’s gain Australian loss.
.
Gautam is indeed very uncomfortable with the questions that real journalists ask and would prefer the sanctuary that existed when the Indian journalists just relied on the feeds that he would provide.  He exploited the fact that Indian Media Organisations did not really have a presence or bureau in Australia.
.
I witnessed one such session in August last year when “real” journalists pushed him off his comfort zone through questions like:
.
  1. If you believe Australia is racist, why have you taken up its residency and have now even given up Indian nationality to become an Aussie citizen?
  2. You are not a student and so how can you run a Federation of Students?
  3. We met students across campuses and on random and most had not heard of FISA till a few months ago. How can you claim that FISA is the voice of all Indian students?
  4. How do you take membership of FISA? Simply subscribing to the website and not filling membership forms or paying subscription cannot make a student your member? Can you provide a list of your members?
  5. Indian Community leaders and also Indian associations feel that what you claim as “racism” is gross generalisation. Why do you not have support of Indian community?
  6. None of the committee members seem to be student and even the President was graduating soon. How can non-students lead an association of Students?
  7. Who provides money to FISA? How does it survive and your motive?
  8. Now you say that all Australians are NOT racists and that all attacks were not racist, but this is not what you said earlier?
  9. We met an attack victim who felt that he wants to stay away from FISA due to FISA’s role in politicising it. Why?
  10. You detail a problem or issue; do you have any solutions or suggestions?
.
This was at a session at Hotel Windsor and Mr Gautam Gupta who had changed from Advisor to Spokesman for FISA almost during the meeting, was accompanied by Mr Amit Menghani, as President of FISA. The entire discussion should be on an audio recorder of one of the experienced journalist (and possibly I too will have a copy somewhere) who post the session told me that he read through this man quite clearly and sees him of the same mould as several Indian small time politicians who use half-facts to build up the full-story. None of journalists bothered to give him any real importance and one even seeked the permission from editor to do an exposure on FISA. (Not needed now that The Age has done the job.) Interestingly, the President of FISA turned out to be a bouncer of a nightclub who kept mum throughout evoking pity for the youngster who was clearly “much used” by the seasoned Gautam. One of the hilarious comments made by Gautam was that FISA is like Amnesty and Red Cross. Does he even know how structured these organisations are?
.
No further comments. I wish I were a lawyer who could take this exposure further to its logical conclusion.
.
Didn’t Venu advise me in an earlier blog to go for the full deal! Hope I did not let you down. No mini-skirts this time.

12 Comments

  1. Well Ravi – Politics is full of dirty players who can never change their filthy style. We are seeing it here

    Like

  2. I read GG’s statement in SMH today about spending tax payers money & it took 2 mins to realise that he is doing nothing but playing dirty filthy politics. I totally agree with your statement ” Gautam Gupta’s taking up of Aussie citizenship by giving up Indian nationality is India’s gain Australian loss” . Well said….

    Like

    1. Hari, the indian media has got this too in a twisted manner and some are reporting that $250000 is going to be spent to bring 25 journalists to OZ… Ha Ha Ha. It will be cheaper to get Medianet of Times of India to charge and print editorials in the newspaper…

      Like

  3. Sir, I have been going through your blogs, It is a warm feeling to know that someone is working so hard to bring forward the facts, who is holding both the countries in his heart. (India and Australia). I would like to repeat what Sitasaran Sir said..”The truth will triumph!”

    Like

    1. Indeed one has to keep India and Australia both in mind and heart. Both these countries have so much in common. Free Press and Freedom of Expression included. Sometimes the cause of all the trouble.

      Like

  4. Gautam Gupta can also claim one day that he is related to Chandra Gupta Maurya if the need arises. Thanks Ravi for providing some knowledge about our Ancient Indian History to our friend who is behaving like a headless chicken. There are some people who want to gain stardom at any cost little knowing what is destined for them. Truth always prevails and one should remember that. My advice to Gautam, of our era, will be to go slow on the political front and think of enacting a role in Aussie/Bollywood venture, GAUTAMA THE GUPT, which might entertain him more than the aam junta, provided he is able to play the role of Siddartha amicably with a blond aussie as his devoted wife, Yashodhara, which seems a distant possibility ………..So what is the next option for him….TO ENACT IN A MOVIE NAMED GUPT GYAN and I’m sure he may do the justice here….perhaps !!

    Like

      1. I totally agree to your suggestion as Emran is a Diploma holder as far as the lips of bollywood actresses are concerned GG can educate him with some more tricks of the trade as he is living in a multicultural society……

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s