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Saddam is Alive and Running along a Beach... for Elections in India

From today's Hindustan Times dated 31 March, 2009.
The caption for this PTI photo reads:
A poster of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein pasted on a campaign vehicle of Saddam Hussain* - CPI(M) candidate from Malapuram in north Kerala, a Muslim-dominated seat.
Interestingly, Malappuram district also has a Saddam beach which got its name during the Gulf War.

The story of the Saddam beach according to The Hindu (31/12/2008):
When the beach got its name (Saddam) during the first Gulf War, there were hardly three-dozen families there. The name of the beach has got into official records.
“It was a clash between two Sunni factions on the beach that earned the beach its name,” said V. Abdul Khader, another resident. “Initially, it had a negative tone. It later transformed into a positive image of resistance against U.S. aggression.” 
The name of the candidate is actually T.K. Hamsa. He was "mistakenly" captioned as Saddam Hussain by the leading Newspapers of the country. (check the comment made by Nikhil )


Previously on Saddam: Saddam Brand Fireworks


  1. Hi
    I am not sure which dodo created this news item.Read the same in TOI too.
    The candidate's name is Advocate TK Hamsa and not Saddam Hussein.
    Someone has fooled these papers.


  2. Thanks for the info. Nikhil!

    The guy in the photograph is certainly candidate TK Hamsa. [updating the post now]
    The source of the gaffe seems to be PTI. Caption for that 'ptoto' at PTI website read:

    "B-65, MALAPPURAM-300301, MARCH 30, 2009: Malappuram: Former Iraq President the late Saddam Hussain's poster is glued along with CPI(M)'s Malappuram candidate Saddam Hussain (R), during an election campaign in Malappuram on Monday. PTI Ptoto *** Local Caption ***"

    I guess 'Local Caption' in a journalistic code for 'Use at your own Risk and Pray nobody Notices'.

    TOI could have made a front page 1st April special item out of this pic. What a waste!

  3. Vinayak,
    Thanks for the input on *Local Caption* funda.

    The same photograph came in Malayala Manorama on 30th March with the candidate's correct name.Only a vernacular daily could figure the *Local Caption*


  4. Little things like these can sometime really get on one's nerve. Just the other day a news piece in HT was printed under the title "Woman from Valley ‘beaten’ for marrying against family’s wishes". I read it and realized the muslim woman was from a place called Nagrota...a place that I know is only half an hours drive from Jammu and has nothing - geographically or ethnically- to do with the 'Valley'. The misleading title was probably chosen just because it would get more eyeballs. There a good chance people in the Valley blamed the "local sources" in Jammu for this stupid title and claimed it as a proof of deliberate attempts being made to defame Kashmiri people.


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