Wednesday, April 5, 2000,
Chandigarh, India



Autonomy for judiciary

THIS refers to the editorial “Autonomy for judiciary” published in The Tribune of March 28.

I, as an ordinary citizen of the largest democracy of the world am feeling much disappointed to learn that even the judicial wing of the Indian state is feeling helpless before the might of the executive. If we read the provisions of our Constitution, which are in conformity with the democratic principles and values to suggest that the independence and supremacy of the judiciary is a sine qua non of a democracy, this essential feature of a democratic society is missing in our polity. Certainly this has demoralised the citizens of our country.

From my personal experience I have also seen the helplessness of the court of our land before the police in case under Section 364, IPC (abduction with intent to murder), wherein when the Supreme Court was approached against the Jalandhar police, the ultimate answer of the highest court was that it was helpless because the DGP Punjab, was not sending its report.

  This state of affairs is certainly a cause for worry and concern rather too much discouraging, particularly to those who serve the nation with their sweat and blood to enable it to provide not only a peaceful living for one and all but also to become a beacon for those nations where human beings are treated as cattle. Moreover, when we are to amend our Constitution in the light of our experience of half a century, the problem needs to be redressed and remedied, at least for those who believe in fair dealing.

Jalandhar City

Defining Khalsa

In his write-up “A centenary celebrated differently” (March 26), Mr V N Datta has observed that while the Arabic word “Khalsa meant the land cultivated by the crown, in the case of Sikhism Khalsa came to mean “chosen people”, who were directly linked with the kingdom of Guru Gobind Singh.

There is no doubt that Khalsa, in Arabic, means the crown land. However, the Guru never thought of establishing his kingdom. He unequivocally declared that he took birth to spread faith, save the saints and destroy the tyrants. For this purpose, he created the Khalsa. By enjoining the salutation of “Wahguru ji ka Khalsa Wahguru ji ki Fateh” (Lord’s is the Khalsa, Lord’s is the victory), he made the Khalsa a chosen instrument of God and inspired him with the belief that the Khalsa’s victory was, in fact, God’s own victory. He warned that those who called him God would fall into the cauldron of hell (Jo ham ko parmeshar uchar hai/Tain sabh nark kund mein par hai).

The learned writer has further observed: Guru Gobind Singh said that the Khalsa is his own image and that he himself resides among the Khalsa. This reinforcing identity remains as long as the Khalsa retains its distinct identity.

Apparently, he has based these remarks on the verses: “Khalsa mero roop hai khaas / Khalsa mein hoon karoon nivaas / Jab lag Khalsa rahey niyaara / Tab lag tej diyoon main saara.” These form part of a poem “Khalsa Mahima” included in the Sarb Loh Granth. Khalsa Mahima does not find a mention along with the Guru’s writings, enumerated in the Rahitnama of Bhai Chaupa Singh Chhibber, claimed to have been written at the instance of and approved by the Tenth Master.

The eulogy of the Khalsa being very exalted and exuberant, the poem is being mistakenly regarded as that of Guru Gobind Singh. Apparently, “Khalsa Mahima” was written by some spirited poet of the heroic period of the Sikhs.


Pensioners’ grouse

The Punjab budget presented in the Vidhan Sabha on March 22 has disappointed the pensioners. Despite repeated assurances held out to the pensioners by the Punjab Chief Minister and the Finance Minister, nothing has been announced in the budget to implement the long-pending recommendations of the Punjab pay panel report.

The report, submitted to the government on February 20,1998, contained 10 major recommendations. Though two years have elapsed, the Badal administration has so far implemented only one recommendation — revision of pensions. The other recommendations seem to have been pushed into cold storage. What is the fun in setting up a pay panel if its recommendations are not to be accepted?


Complete metamorphosis

The Bill Clinton visit of India has been a grand success. It transformed the “natural adversaries” into natural allies”.

The decades old “nothingness” and “void” in the diplomatic ties of the two big democracies underwent complete metamorphosis. Indeed, in “Vajpayee” we have the best ever Prime Minister whose matchless genius surfaced at every function during the visit. His harmoniously blended pragmatism with simplicity has left a mark on the distinguished guest.

But, alas, here in our country the old man is occasionally humbled and humiliated by the “wild behaviour” of those hardliners who refuse to see beyond.

Bhawanimandi (Rajasthan)


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