Friday, August 18,
Chandigarh, India



Kashmir: do we understand basic issues?

IN the context of Mr Hari Jaisingh’s article of August 11 (“Another Kashmir fiasco: do we understand basic issues?”) , the Centre’s willingness to talk to the Hizbul Mujahideen had given rise to the hope that Kashmir might at last be able to emerge out of its most traumatic phase in recent history. Considering that several militant groups in the North-East, having engaged in violence for decades, had eventually started a dialogue with the Centre, there was no reason why a similar process could not begin in Kashmir. Unfortunately, however, the parleys failed to take off, thanks to the nefarious and scandalous game clandestinely played by Pakistan.

The Indian Government had explicitly made it known that negotiations would have to be within the framework of the Constitution and that Pakistan would not be included in such an exercise. This basic premise was rejected by the Hizb men who stubbornly insisted on Pakistani participation.

The author pertinently points out that the Hizb outfit is only one of the large number of militant organisations. As and when a dialogue with any militant organisation is initiated the Centre must bear in mind that there is no single party or group of parties that is capable of representing all sections of the people of Jammu & Kashmir. It is important, therefore, for the government to interact with as many segments of opinion in the state as possible. Moreover, as the experience in the North-East has shown, finding a solution that meets the approval of all sides is not easy. It has to be a long and arduous exercise calling for a great deal of effort, patience and perseverance on both sides.


Israel and the USA pursue a consistent policy of refusing to negotiate with terrorists. Israel’s policy of swift and devastating strikes — and sometimes pre-emptive attacks on terrorist bases — often falls on the fringes of legality. The USA also believes in legally questionable retaliatory assaults, such as the missile attacks on suspected shelters of Saudi fugitive Osama bin Laden. Yet this successful combat policy has not deterred terrorists from attacking Israeli and US interests.

India is allowed to follow only US advice and not its deeds. In effect, India would invite international outrage if it were to raid terrorist bases in Pakistan and Afghanistan, as suggested by former Defence Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav.


MAJOR ISSUE: Kashmir has been a major issue since Independence. Many innocent people, police personnel, Army officials, political leaders and others have lost their lives as a result of this crisis. But no one knows how long it will take to get resolved, and how many more people will lose their lives in the near future.

The firing at Amarnath pilgrims at Jammu, which claimed many lives, and the car bomb blast in Srinagar have shocked not only the state but also the rest of the country.

Now firings or bomb blast incidents are reported almost everyday in Jammu and Kashmir. No one knows how many people have been killed by the militants backed by the ISI of Pakistan till today.

It has rightly been said that the Centre just reacts to one side-show after another without really testing its policy options and strategies. The government should review its policies, keeping the talk-programme aside, to meet the challenge in Kashmir. It should not depend merely on talks.

Moreover, the government should ensure adequate cooperation and coordination between the Army and other agencies for sharing intelligence, etc.


SINISTER MOTIVES: The offer of the Hizb, as one could guess, had three main wicked and sinister motives. One, the militants of this outfit had tired out during the long period of militancy and wanted to live in peace. Two, under the shadow of peace talks, the Hizb intended to create disturbances on Independence Day at some key place in the country. Three, Pakistan wanted to seek for it an opportunity — involving the Hizb — for tripartite talks.

India has already made it clear in forthright terms that there is no question of having a dialogue with Pakistan unless it halts transborder terrorism. The last one seems to be the most obvious motive behind the Hizb decision calling off truce and shelving the negotiations.

Pakistan's intention is to keep the Kashmir issue alive. At present, India's sole worry is the spate of brutal killings of innocent civilians by mercenaries and militants. For the car bomb blast in Srinagar on August 10, two Pakistan-based militant outfits, including the Hizbul Mujahideen, have owned responsibility.

Mere wordy condemnation of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism is not enough. The USA, Britain and other powerful countries should declare Pakistan a terrorist state. Besides this, like-minded nations should come forward to form a joint working group to fight militancy.

Bijhari (Hamirpur)

“Tu tu — main main” in Parliament

The TV serial "Tu tu — main main" is a unique love-hate drama depicting a stimulating relationship between "saas" and "bahu", seemingly in the opposite camps but not so in reality, where love between the two is from the core of their hearts but hatred only superficial. Love, therefore, triumphs over hate at the end of each episode, leaving the household in a state of perpetual happiness.

One wishes the "Tu tu — main main" in Parliament was a healthy affair. Couldn’t parliamentarians, though sitting in opposite camps, learn a lesson or two from this serial? But, alas, here the love-hate duo has swapped places. While hatred among the parties is from the core of their heart, love is only superficial. Here, therefore, hatred is the winner at the end of each day, leaving the country in a state of perpetual unhappiness.

Wg Cdr C.L. SEHGAL (retd.)

Thoughts on recruitment

There are a number of vacancies for posts of constable in Haryana, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh (as given in leading newspapers). A good number of the aspirants could be postgraduates, graduates and under-graduates. One can well understand as to how cumbersome task it would be to select suitable candidates from a band of aspiring candidates.

It is thus imperative that the system of selection leaves much to be desired. The existing system of selection and recruitment cannot (it is regretted) be said to be foolproof. Whatever the method of selection may be, its objective is to assess the qualities and suitability of candidates.

Selection means choosing a few from among a multiple number of aspirants (meaning thereby right-type of persons for the right job). It hardly needs any emphasis that selection must be competitive and objective. There is an immediate necessity to adopt a proper screening test. It is suggested that these tests should include the following criteria. This step will reduce the burden of the Selection Board and also result in a fair and just selection:

(a) Physical built-up, effective intelligence, competence and reasoning ability.

(b) Leadership qualities, social adaptability and adjustment.

(c) Sense of responsibility and spirit of cooperation.

(d) Self-confidence, initiative, drive, enthusiasm, stamina and dynamism.

(e) Resourcefulness, determination and speed of judgement (so as to act as per specific gravity of situations)

(f) The candidate must be cool and steady to perceive and appreciate any situation.

Lastly, it is suggested that a selection board is appointed in each district for fair and just recruitment of police constables. These steps will eliminate various complaints regarding malpractice, corruption, favouritism, nepotism, etc.


Pensioners of aided schools

Stepmotherly treatment is being meted out to the pensioners of aided schools of Punjab. They have been denied the benefits of the Fourth Pay Commission and the recent hike in DA instalments.

Hundreds of these pensioners are helpless to raise their voice against this injustice. The Government of Punjab should come to their rescue by removing this long-standing grievance.

T.D. Bhardway

Educative pullout

I am a regular reader of “Log in... Tribune”. Such supplements will help not only the students getting computer education but also the people in general.

India is progressing at a great pace in this field. The information given in the pullout is appreciable.

Rurka Kalan (Jalandhar)


What is the latest definition of the one-day international cricket match?

Answer: It is a fixed overs match in which fixed players score fixed runs, lose fixed wickets or take fixed catches.



Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
120 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |