The Tribune - Spectrum

Sunday, July 23, 2000

A debate for autonomy

THIS has refers to M.L. Kakís write-up "Autonomy debate" (July 2).

Farooq Abdullahís rather unseemly haste in convening a special session of the J & K Assembly to discuss the autonomy report and finally to get the autonomy resolution passed, betrays immaturity of political thinking. The Union Cabinet has unanimously rejected the resolution seeking to restore the pre-1953 constitutional position.

Sheikh Abdullahís plea for special status was understandable on two counts. First, he had struggled and suffered to liberate the people from a feudal tyranny. Second, he wanted to bring about radical reforms in the agricultural sector to which the Constitution of India would have been a hurdle. Laws for distribution of land would not stand the test of fundamental rights provided in the Constitution. It was thus a plea based on the principles of democracy and social justice.

Does Farooq Abdullah have the same political background and sensitivity as his father did? Did the state economy flourish under his leadership? Have the relations between the diverse religions and ethnic communities improved? Is the administration less corrupt and more efficient than before? Was he able to curb or control militancy?

People are skeptical of the autonomy demand pressed by him at this juncture because his four-year rule in the state left them disillusioned and alienated. The graph of killings has again risen and there is no visible change in the socio-economic situation. The report on internal autonomy, circulated with the autonomy report, envisages the administrative division of the state on communal lines, something that may pave the way for the partition of the state.

What is more important is that, in an attempt to remain in the seat of power, he is making every effort to divert the attention of the people from the real issues. The bogey of autonomy is one of the efforts in that direction.




Apropos of Gurmukh Singh Sandhuís article "This diamond is forever" (July 9), the writer has failed to mention the legend, which some say is historically true, that when Maharaja Ranjit Singh was critically ill, he had expressed a desire to his close relatives and confidants, that after his death the Koh-i-Noor should be presented to Lord Jagannath Temple at Puri (Orissa).

The Lahore Durbar, however, did not fulfil the last wish of the Maharaja.


Joint families

The write-up "A good place for your daughter to be in" by Taru Bahl (June 11) was interesting.

As opposed to the nuclear family system, the joint family system despite its many flaws, serves a great social cause i.e. widows, widowers, old, orphans, handicapped, etc. are provided shelter and security and not left alone to fend for themselves. The joint family teaches tolerance, patience, cooperation and a sense of family pride.

Regarding relationships, a familiar-adage by Thomas Fuller is "My son is my son till he has got himself a wife, but my daughter is my daughter all days of her life".


Unfair to girls

This refers to the article, "When brides become scarce" by Laika Jain, (July 2).

We cannot wish away sad facts. It is a harsh and cruel reality that except in a few progressive families, the girl child still faces callous discrimination. Most of the time we donít feel strongly about it because we have got so accustomed to it. The parents call her paraya dhan i.e. someone elseís property, and the in-laws call her parayi beti i.e. someone elseís daughter. She does not belong any where. She walks throughout her life in the twilight zone of no-manís land.

Radical changes are needed to ensure that millions of little girls get better, more positive treatment.


Choosing a partner

Apropos of A.C. Tuliís article "Picking a partner", (June 18), it is commonly observed that most people want their life partners to be in the same profession as them. No doubt, similar habits, attitudes and mutual regard for each other, form the basis of a happy married life.

If the husband and wife are in the same profession, they think on almost the same wavelength. Their common professional interests bind them together. In this way, they learn to share ideas and thoughts. This helps to strengthen their relationship.