Is the media anti-Hindu (Organiser, 22-10-2006); Saeed Naqvi?s article is thought provoking but at the same time it provokes debate. He cites the plight of Kashmiri Pandits, who left the valley as if voluntarily, while the truth is that they were forced to leave their hearth and home. Marking it as an unfortunate event, he proceeds as a preceptor. He says that to keep revisiting the tragedy would be harmful. But to keep reviving the tragedy would be what? Naqvi Saheb, it is not the political but the imperial interests assuming different names to keep not only the Kashmir but the entire country at loggerheads. Since post-independent India, because of its secularism, is widely open for anti-national elements, it conveniently and continuously remains under the violent threats of balkanization. The English media masquerades as indifferent. It is your wishful thinking that a settlement with Pakistan and Kashmir would restore the condition for the return of the Kashmiri Pandits. Naqvi Saheb, in order to justify the naked depiction of Hindu gods and goddesses, you have dragged Rahim Khankhana to the far-below level of M.F. Husain. You need not be told that amongst the Hindi writers and readers, Rahim is taken in high esteem, whereas the Muslims priests regard him as kafir. Somewhat interesting is how you come to rescue Husain. Speaking on his behalf, you say that he cannot draw the imaginary picture of Prophet and imams but is privileged to depict the Hindu gods and goddesses in nude, based purely on imagination and this naked drawing by him suggests his respect and dedication to the goddess, whom the Hindus worship as the supreme being of wisdom. Yes, this is the respect and dedication of Husain in hurting the feelings of his fellow-countrymen in crores! Have you allowed the similar privilege to the Danish cartoonist or Salman Rushdie? Have you extended the same privilege to Taslima Nasrin, who is being chased by your co-religionists and you, an advocate of cultural freedom, did not, as far as I remember, come down in her protection. You chose Husain as guinea pig for your invented cultural commerce where a Muslim can take liberty to go to any offensive extent, provided he keeps his own religious barriers intact.
?DR GANESH PRASAD BARANWAL,
Tilak Marg, Narghat, Mirzapur
Hu can have it better (Organiser, 26-11-2006); For someone pretending to seek a just resolution of the Sino-Indian border dispute, the Chinese claim on entire Arunachal Pradesh, just before Hu Jintao?s visit, is simply outrageous and proves the imperialist designs of China. It is common knowledge that the Chinese foreign policy has laid claims over all such territories that had at any point of time, in the past 5000 years, been under its occupation for howsoever short a duration. Minister for External Affairs, Pranab Mukherjee, without mentioning Aksai-Chin or Tibet, in the typically polite Indian manner and with perfect regards to the Chinese sentiments, has reiterated Indian sovereignty over Arunachal Pradesh. However, it would be interesting to see what new spins and reasons our communists, who have raised the bogey of American imperialism successfully for the last few years, will invent to justify the imperialist overtures from the Fatherland. Is it once again going to be those maps?conveniently altered to suit the Chinese allegations?they had circulated in the wake of 1965 Chinese aggression or some high-sounding banal sloganeering such as ?proletariat internationalism? used to justify the Russian invasions of East European countries in the 40s and 50s of the last century? Perhaps none. We can be sure of their studied silence on the issue, for even our loud-mouthed communists, with their abiding concerns for the sovereignty of Iraq, Iran, North Korea and sundry know the golden value of silence on some matters. Indian sovereignty being one of them.
23, West Arjun Nagar, Agra
News: Whose choice, editors? or readers?? (Organiser, 12-11-2006); I am not very much concerned about the selection of news appearing in the media. But I am definitely upset when the news is presented with biased comments. The news must be presented as news and with absolute objectivity. I agree with the suggestion made in the column that a full page should be provided to the readers to express their views. This is where most of the reputed papers are guilty. In the first place, they hardly provide enough space and as if that is not enough they suppress the dissenting views. What is still worse is they exhibit favouritism! An English daily that used to boast that they receive thousands of letters everyday published at least thrice two letters from the same person on one day. Another English daily that was in forefront in fight against the dictatorial rule of Smt Indira Gandhi and especially during the dark days of the infamous emergency has restricted the space for the readers and blatantly indulge in suppressing the inconvenient letters and promoting its own horses. I have been a regular letter-writer for over last three decades and have been reading more than one English-language newspaper for decades. So, I can speak from my experience and with the facts and figures to back up my allegations. These are the same editors who talk about transparency day in day out! I expect Organiser to take up the issue and further expose these unscrupulous editors.
B-4/5, Shata Taraka CHS, Near RTO, 4 Bungalows, Andheri(W), Mumbai
A proactive Hindu response (Organiser, 12-11-2006); In the article, the writer should have given some concrete examples, not arguments, of any region where Muslims are in dominant position and still maintain equality with Hindus. We have a Christian lady in command and can see how minorities are progressively dominating life at the cost of Hindus. Hindu and Muslims are terms that confirm to the Muslim stand. Actually, no political entity called Hindu exists. ?Muslim? is a political entity, as we experience everyday, call it a faith or a religion. Hindu is neither one faith nor one religion. The word ?Hindu?, plurality in itself, is a term used only to differentiate people other than Muslims and Christians. A Hindu is trained to think of himself as one of the human species while Muslims are trained to submit their self to their identity. How can non-existing identity confront an assertive force?
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Sankat Mochan Ashram, R.K. Puram-6, New Delhi
The writer has misquoted and twisted certain facts. He says, ?India did not opt to be a Hindu nation? and ?Muslims who opted to remain in India did not deserve such treatment? (perhaps he means the type of treatment given to Hindus in Pakistan). Firstly, it is a historical fact that India was partitioned in 1947 on the basis of Hindus and Muslims, and Jinnah and Muslim League had been propagating that after the creation of Pakistan, Muslims will have no claim over the remaining truncated India, which would be a homeland for Hindus. With this clear-cut understanding, almost all Muslims, living in undivided India, voted for Muslim League and Pakistan in 1945-46 elections. Not even a single Muslim seat could be captured by Muslims candidates fielded by Congress. Thus Jinnah and Muslim League emerged as the undisputed representative of almost all the Muslims of undivided India. But Congress cheated the Hindus and refused to make India a homeland for Hindus. Since Hindus were not united and organised, there was no criticism to what Congress did. It is worth mentioning that in this secular India, Muslim League has never been banned and is at present part of the ruling UPA government, whereas Hindu Mahasabha had remained banned for years only because it was a Hindu political party.
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The Indian nation is a union of several sub-nationalities, a union of people in their diversity. There are several factors other than religion that separates them, and religion is not even the strongest of those factors.
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F-119, Sadan New Adarsh Colony, Jai Nagar, Jabalpur
I concur with the writer that it is unwise to think that historical wrongs of the past could be righted by taking revenge on the present generation. It is to be noted that while viewing Muslims separatism, one also needs to look at the Muslim quest for cultural integration and reorientation to Hindu way of thinking.
Yamaha Vihar, Sector 49, Noida
Hatred begets hatred (Organiser, 12-11-2006); A.T.M. Anwar offers his advice regarding negative feeling among your readership. There is another tested and constructive Muslims approach, i.e. ?victimhood and domination??a dual psychology of the Muslim fundamentalists. Lament of being aggrieved within and without of India pave the way for rights and privileges and subsequent appeasement. At the same time, keep mum about persecution and ethnic cleansing of the non-Muslims, abandoning all duties and responsibilities. Perhaps this is the fitting approval to good relations and patriotism!
B 103, Kedar Apartments, Sector IX, Rohini, Delhi
Mulayam encroaches on Hindu faith (Organiser, 5-11-2006); I am greatly pained to read the report. Organising a roza iftar party and serving eggs and meat at the banks of the Ganga in Haridwar during the recent national executive meeting of Samajwadi Party is an insult to the most sacred river and crores of Hindus. Mulayam Singh Yadav has always hurt the Hindu sentiments but Hindus themselves are responsible for their own insult as they are so liberal that they do not teach a lesson to such leaders. Hindus will have to give up their extreme liberalism and have to stand strongly against their insult so that leaders like Mulayam do not dare hurt their religious sentiments.
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Shankerpur, Sahaspur, Dehradun
Mulayam Singh Yadav could not find any other better and pious place for the Muslims to hold an iftar party and Muslims did not object to such an even in an infidel niche. Perhaps ?secularism? was the main factor, but vote-bank compulsions had an upper hand.
28, Palmyra Road, Bromsgrove, B60 2RH, UK
Communism as religion (Organiser, 29-10-2006); Dharma and religion are not the same thing. Religion is a part of dharma only, which deals with ritual practices of people. So religions are many, while dharma is one. Every religion has some common characteristic features?belief in one god, one book, one rite and one prophet. Thus religion forms a community with its followers. It teaches them that they only follow the truth. There is also fanaticism in religion. Now if we study the communist thought and activities, we can see all the said elements are present in communism. Therefore, communism itself is a religious faith, though it declares that religion is an opium for the people and a communist must be an atheist.
?BIMAN BIHAR ROY,
514/A/4 Ashoknagar, North 24 Parganas
A strategy to combat terrorism in India (Organiser, 8-10-2006); Terrorism in India has foreign roots and alien inspiration. One fact that should be paid adequate attention to understand the root-cause of terrorism is that a section of people are being instigated with wrong interpretation of the teaching of the Quran, according to which, Islamic fanatics should always strive for establishment of Islamic rule in the whole world. In Kashmir or any other parts of India or in the world, what the Islamists do is simply a part of performance of their religious obligation. Islamic fanatics are well-versed in their religious obligation and responsibility. They are not fickle-minded to be fooled. Their determination and firmness to their conviction is well established in the world. It is painful that our intellectuals treat them as misguided ones.
Ujjain Kutir, Auddi Bungalow, Telaiya, Koderma, Jharkhand
Correct assessment: The Parliamentary Committee on Defence is right in enacting the new law to curb the existing harsh and oppressive military laws of British days in order to boost the sagging morale of the troops. Not democracy, but dictatorship needs harsh and oppressive laws to meet frequent coups, which is not a norm under democracy, with the exception of a few inefficient ones, who ignore even the child?s louder cry for milk.
574, Krishan Nagar, Gurdaspur
Corruption champion: The Ministry of Revenue, Government of Maharashtra, deserves to be congratulated for its tremendous endeavour in retaining the top-most rank in corruption, similar to last year, followed by police department. Anti-Corruption Bureau of Maharashtra has disclosed its report recently with detailed statistics. However, a competition is going on between the revenue department and police department to secure and retain the first rank in corruption.
?SRIDHAR V. KULKARNI,