Saturday, February 26, 2000,
Chandigarh, India



Much-hyped Clinton visit

APROPOS of Inder Malhotra’s article, “Much-hyped Clinton visit” (Feb 17), in view of the rigid stand taken both by India and Pakistan over the Kashmir issue, further bilateral talks between the two may, like before, be of little avail. Though Pakistan swears by plebiscite in J&K under the 50-year-old UN resolution, it is unlikely to fulfil preconditions thereof like withdrawal of all its forces from PoK, including territories since ceded by it to China. As regards the US harping on ascertaining the wishes of the people, especially on the Indian side, these have been categorically expressed during several elections to the J and K Legislative Assembly and Parliament since 1947.

Since the present Line of Control jointly delineated by India and Pakistan at the time of the Simla Agreement in 1972 dates back to January 1,1949, and its sanctity and inviolability have been upheld by the international community also during the Kargil conflict, the only realistic and practical solution may be to make it the international border between the two countries. But bound by the resolutions passed by their Parliament/National Assembly, their governments may not take an initiative in this regard. The USA and other major powers may, however, be of help if they exert their influence with both governments to convince them to agree to the above in the interest of peace and security and elimination of terrorism and insurgency in the region.



Valentine’s day

In your editorial, “Essence of festivity” (Feb 16), you have rightly highlighted the ugly state of affairs of the so-called festival of lovers viz Valentine’s Day. Our youth today is just crazy about this festival and without knowing the spirit behind the celebration of this festival, they are out to celebrate in their own way. It has come to light that young boys act in an indecent manner i.e. chasing the girls thereby scaring them and creating in them the feeling of insecurity. This is not the way that our youth of today should spoil the sanctity of the festival.

On the P.U. campus that day, the main gates were closed and the entry was very strict. The youths particularly were searched and only those were allowed to enter the campus who had valid/genuine reasons to do so. This act on the part of security men had become necessary on the basis of their experience in the past. Otherwise this is rather a matter of embarrassment, and if I go still further, an insult to the youth which has been created (the insult) by themselves by acting irresponsibly. It is time we educated our youths to celebrate the festival in keeping with the sanctity which it carries.

You have rightly cited the example of another disfigured festival, Holi.

Media can play a very significant role in educating our youths. TV is one organ which can play a very important role. The idiot box can do a lot in keeping up the spirit of all the festivals. I personally feel that if any festival is not celebrated with dignity people should be asked/advised/persuaded to abandon that festival. Similarly, we must think about banning fireworks on Divali.



Railways halt

In regard to the news “Railways’ no to halt” (Feb 17) because it “would cost Rs 134 per day”, I would like to submit before public (tax-payers) of Rohtak-Gohana cities and General Manager, Northern Railways that it would not cost the above amount per day. Rather it will bring thousands of rupees per day to railway exchequer.

As per my knowledge, when Rohtak station would have been built, about 95% population of Rohtak city might had an access of railway station facility whereas now only about 20% population of the city has an easy reach to this railway station.

About 25% population residing in or around this proposed Civil Lines railways halt has been commuting to Delhi, 10% to Gohana, Panipat, Karnal, Ambala and Chandigarh (number of daily passengers to this route will increase) and 5 per cent to Bhiwani daily. This proposed halt will reduce the air and noise pollutions especially of the 5-km-long chain of three-wheelers, auto-rickshaws running daily on this Civil Lines.

It is submitted before the Northern Railways authorities that when “Rukhi halt” in between Rohtak-Gohana can be built and is surviving till date where from not even five passengers travel in a day towards either Rohtak or Gohana then why not have this Civil Lines railways halt, from where thousands of passengers shall travel daily.



An international conference on contribution made by the people of Indian origin to their countries was recently held in New Delhi (February 13).

How about holding a national conference on the contribution, if any, made by the people ‘and leaders’ in India to their own country all these years?



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