Wednesday, January 3, 2001,
Chandigarh, India



Prisoners in Pakistan

This is with reference to the editorial “Hell called the Pak jails” (Tribune, Dec 20). Hundreds of Indians in Pakistani jails are living in extreme tension. They are tortured and not given even proper meals.

Indians arrested for various reasons are all treated as spies and tortured mercilessly as has been the experience of Indian prisoners who were recently repatriated from Pakistan. Mr Roop Lal, an Indian spy who was released by Pakistan last year, has narrated his story. The authorities in Pakistan have forgotten civilised behaviour and international law relating to prisoners. Even prisoners of war are tortured in Pakistan.

The Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of External Affairs should make joint efforts for the repatriation of hundreds of Indian soldiers and others who are in Pakistani jails.

m. l. garg

Vajpayee and Barak

Israel’s Mr Barak and India’s Mr Vajpayee both want peace for their peoples. They have done their utmost to achieve peace. Both have made unprecedented compromises to entice their respective adversaries (Palestinians and Islamic terrorists). While Mr Barak has offered to give away the Jewish holy site, Temple Mount, to the Palestinians, Mr Vajpayee has gone against all previously known positions of his party and offered a dialogue and a unilateral ceasefire to Pakistan-supported Islamic terrorists.


But the similarities end there. While Mr Barak clearly wants peace, he does not hesitate for a moment to respond strongly to violence. As a result the common Israeli knows that come what may, his life and property is respected by his leadership.

On the other hand, even after almost daily massacres of our people and armed forces, Mr Vajpayee happily continues to tie our army to a unilateral ceasefire, without realising that a unilateral ceasefire is nothing but unilateral surrender.

Terrorism cannot be contained by submission. The BJP is doing a great disservice not only to the nation, but also to its core base.


Good motoring

All articles on good motoring, have been written painstakingly keeping in mind the safety of those who are at the wheel. Good motoring and safe motoring are good habits, but the writer has omitted two essential aspects of good motoring.

Good motoring needs good roads. Without properly built roads good motoring is not possible. Your traffic sense, manoeuvrability, well-equipped vehicle are of no use if the roads are bad, if the tarmac is poor and if the roads are badly planned. In our country one comes across bridges on canals and drains where the road is twisted into unwanted turns. This results in road accidents. The roads should be well planned, keeping in view the speed of the vehicles. Bridges on canals and drains should be aligned to the roads and not to the canals and drains. It is not bad motoring, which causes road accidents, but poor roads that have encroachments all around them.

The other aspect is the presence of stray cattle on the roads. The government has done nothing or very little to keep the roads free from stray cattle. If we are not able to get rid of the cattle due to our religious sentiments, the government should force religious organisations to work out a plan to look after stray cattle. People with religious sentiments should make voluntary contributions for the upkeep of stray cattle and help people to enjoy good motoring.

gurdip singh bhamra

Vishwanathan Anand

I would like to convey my congratulations to Vishwanathan Anand and to India. The media should feature him more often so as to promote the sport in the country. A number of beauty queens from India and now a world chess champion means much to us. If only the Government could correct its policies and support sports programmes in right earnest! I am amazed by the performance of Indian sportsmen even in these conditions. Bravo, keep it up Vishy and other hardworking sportsmen and sportswomen without much support from the Government.

jaswinder sandhu
Brampton (Canada)

Individual merit: Grandmaster Vishwanathan Anand has done the nation proud by winning the World Chess Championship. Many years ago a Bangalorean, Wilson Jones, captured the world title in billiards, a game which at that time was more popular in the western world than in India. In recent years many of our talented women have been crowned Miss World and Miss Universe.

It is now time for introspection. Why are we able to excel in sports and other activities only in our individual capacities but end up as failures when collective action by a team or a group is required? In sports, cricket and hockey are the examples of our lack-lustre performance as a team. We cannot afford to indulge in the luxury of individual successes at the cost of team work.

The success of our democracy also depends on our ability to function as a team at all levels. Leadership is the ability to create such teams.

kangayam r. rangaswamy
Durham, NC

Visit to Sulah

Apropos the article “A grassroots revolution in making” published in your esteemed daily on December 22 Sulah is not Mr Shanta Kumar’s native place; it is Garh Jamula. Further, the last assembly elections were held simultaneously with the Lok Sabha poll in 1998 when Mr Shanta Kumar was the BJP candidate from the Kangra parliamentary constituency of which the Sulah assembly segment forms an important part. He visited Sulah a number of times during extensive campaigning and he was not stopped from entering his native place.

New Delhi


Q: What is our latest exim policy?

A: Import cosmetics, export beauties!


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