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Small steps can change Indo-Pak ties

H K Dua’s front-page editorial “The importance of taking a small step”(Feb 10) with its substantial suggestions will go a long way in convincing those who oppose India’s initiative to start talks with Pakistan. Those people are rightly angry with Pakistan over its attitude on and after the 26/11. But, it is also true that the immediate neighbours can’t live in distrust forever.

Both countries have a common cultural heritage and many people on both sides are related to each other. India’s efforts for regional peace and cooperation need to be appreciated. Differences between the two countries can never be resolved through war or war-like environment. Both countries cannot afford to spend huge sums on arms.

The need of the hour is that both countries should join hands to tackle terrorism. We hope Pakistan will respond positively and do its best to dismantle terrorists’ network functioning on its land.

People-to-people contacts should be strengthened through trade, sports and cultural activities. Pakistan must understand that if it fails to respond honestly the day is not far off when its economy will be totally shattered by fundamentalists, terrorists and the distant foreign powers. Good neighbourly relations with India will surely strengthen it in all respects.


Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor, neatly hand-written or typed in double space, should not exceed the 150-word limit. These can be sent by post to the Letters Editor, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160030. Letters can also be sent by e-mail to: Letters@tribuneindia.com

— Editor-in-Chief


Bilateral talks between India and Pakistan would help resolve conflicts and promote peace. Although it is difficult to forget past events, but we must learn from them to reshape future talks. As India is already facing internal challenges the dialogue between the two countries will be helpful. India and the rest of the subcontinent can benefit enormously, if we focus on the future.

Mr Dua has befittingly mentioned, “Statesmanship and adept handling of diplomacy require not sticking to rigid positions but at times searching for new options suitable for the time and the country’s future needs”. India’s defence expenditure can be redirected to tackle internal challenges and attain inclusive growth. We can ill-afford to squander more time.

Dr SANJIV GUPTA Perth, Australia


The editorial has rightly opined that the Foreign Secretary level talks would help in reducing the ongoing differences between the two countries. However, we should not forget the 26/11 carnage. India should pressurise Pakistan to act against terrorists operating from its soil. 


Educate all

Primary education in India is in a bad shape. We have failed to provide universal primary education in the country because of our casual approach on the issue. Then there are problem of dropouts and absenteeism, etc.

The mid-day meal schemes, supply of free uniforms and textbooks and grant of incentives can solve these problems to a large extent. Illiteracy and poverty are interrelated and a great obstacle in the socio-economic progress of the country.

The infrastructure facilities for primary education need to be improved. The teachers should be well-trained and paid well and also made accountable.


Death of soldiers

It is agonising and regrettable that 17 soldiers were killed and as many critically injured in an avalanche near Gulmarg in J& K.

One wonders if this tragedy could have been averted with some foresight and precautionary steps including a proper appraisal of the mountainous terrain around the location occupied by the armed forces personnel.

Wg-Cdr SC KAPOOR (retd), Noida

Flowers are priceless

Triloki Das Khandelwal’s letter (Jan 25) was delightful. My Urdu teacher, who was an ardent lover of flowers, advised his students to feast their eyes on the beauty of this gorgeous creation of God and never to touch them. Whenever I see someone plucking flowers, I cry: Hamney kaanton ko bhee narmee sey chhua hai aksar/Log be-dard hain phoolon ko masal dete hain. In his poem “Phool”, the legendary poet Iqbal said: Nahin ye shann-e-khud-daari chaman sey tor kar tujh ko/koi dastaar mein rakh ley koi zeib-e-galoo kar le (It is not the dignity of self-respect that somebody should pluck you from the garden and clip you on his turban or wear you around his/her neck). There are interesting legends about some flowers. Cupid gave a rose as a bribe to God Harpocrates not to reveal the fault of goddess Venus. The rose, thus, became an emblem of silence. Narcissus, a beautiful youth fell in love with his own reflection in a pool. After his death he was changed into a flower, which bears his name.

During his stay in Delhi, the Persian invader, Nadir Shah, had abdominal disorder. A hakeeem gave him medicinal paste of some flowers. He relished and said: The pudding is very scrumptious. Bring plenty of it.




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