Wednesday, March 29, 2000,
Chandigarh, India



Pakistan’s diabolical face

THE massacre of 40 persons of a village in the Kashmir Valley (A barbaric Act, editorial, March 22) is a shocking reminder of the cost the nation and its people have to pay for allowing the Kashmir problem to fester. The carnage was obviously timed to coincide with US President Bill Clinton's visit to India. The ghastly mass murder, the biggest in the state since the return of popular rule in 1996, is qualitatively different from the earlier ones in that the victims this time belong to a minority community — Sikhs — who had thus far not been exclusively targeted. One obvious explanation is that Islamic militants are seeking to create and sustain a communal polarisation which would serve their purpose. Another purpose of this Pakistan-sponsored cross-border terrorism may be to internationalise the Kashmir issue and remind President Clinton that Pakistan cannot be ignored.

Whatever Pakistan's motives, India cannot afford to be complacent particularly since General Musharraf's military regime has adopted an aggressive stance vis-a-vis J&K and has escalated the level of violence with a significant rise in the number of attacks on army and paramilitary posts. The government in January unveiled a new strategy to combat cross-border terrorism. I should be implemented effectively.

  It need hardly be spelt out that enough security must be provided to minorities to ensure there is no exodus. Unless the Indian state is able to clearly demarcate between the carrot for the people of the Valley and the stick for the militants, it could find itself fighting a losing battle.


HEINOUS CRIME: The intent and message of the latest incident that claimed over 36 lives in Chatti Singhpora village in the valley is as clear as daylight. And as if to underline the planned nature of this heinous crime, Baramulla district also witnessed a grenade attack on a police station and the torching of a local politician’s house.

The message by the perpetrators of the gory crime should be clear to US President Bill Clinton. Terrorists from across the border are unfazed by any gestures of Indo-US friendship that one sees through the “Vision Statement” agreement signed by the two countries. It also underlines the fact that the forces of terrorism are gaining strength by the day.

President Clinton owes it to the world to talk tough with Pakistan’s military ruler Gen Pervez Musharraf to stop exporting trans-border terrorism to India forthwith. Musharraf too would do well not to forget the fate of Generals Ayub Khan, Yahya Khan and Zia-ul-Haq.


INDIA MUST ACT: I was shocked by the massacre of 35 Sikhs in Kashmir by Islamic militants. For how long will the Indian Government keep sacrificing the innocent people and our brave jawans? We have to help ourselves as it is our problem. Counting on President Bill Clinton will not help.

Santa Clara (USA)

FIGHTING TERRORISM: Following the massacre in Chatti Singhpora, Sikhs have decided to leave the area out of panic which will not be in conformity with community's past glorious traditions. They should fight terrorism rather than seek safety for themselves. .

It is also high time for Parliament to scrap the special status for Kashmir and allow citizens of other states to live there. This will help in restoring peace and combating terrorism.


BRUTAL PAK DESIGN: Terrorism is today the most serious threat facing our country. It has become a menace to the unity and integrity of country. If we cannot think of the future, can't we at least remember our past? Is this not the country which has been known as the land of goodwill, amity and harmony? Is this the country where great men like Guru Nanak Dev, Mahavira etc. were born?

Guns can never silence guns. Laws will remain ineffective unless there is a mass awakening. We should make the misguided join the national mainstream and work towards the prosperity of the nation.


Pak kills human rights

Though the Constitution of Pakistan has been battered and tossed around several times on the barrel of the gun in the past, yet the recent ban on political rallies strikes etc. by the military government just days before the arrival of President Clinton in South Asia has not only violated the basic fundamental rights of the citizens enshrined in Chapter 1 (Articles 15-19) of the Constitution but has also exposed the true colours of the military regime. Pakistan is now officially relegated yet again to a full-fledged dictatorship that too in the 21st century!

It indeed points to a gloomy state of affairs. Happily, political upheavals and turbulent times have never resulted in military take-over in India.


Judicial officers' scales

The Government of India had set-up a Judicial Pay commission for looking into the service conditions and revision of pay-scales of all judicial officers in the country. The commission submitted its report in two parts:

1. for judges of Supreme Court and High Court and

2. for subordinate judicial officers.

The pay scales of staff subordinate to the judges were revised by the respective state governments. The pay-scale of judges of the Supreme Courts and high courts were revised in accordance with the recommendation of the judicial commission. However, the recommendations for subordinate judicial officers have been placed on the shelf by the government and there is nobody to look after their interests.



Guess as to how US President Bill Clinton’s feelings for Indo-USA relations could be best described?

Answer: As Taj Stands for Beauty I stand for Indo-USA Unity!



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