Friday, November 23, 2001, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi



India in today’s global politics: lessons from PM’s three-nation tour

This refers to Mr Hari Jaisingh's article "India in today's global politics" (Nov. 17). During the tour, Mr Vajpayee tried to put India in focus by apprising the world leaders of Indian sensitivities and sufferings at the hands of Pak-sponsored terrorist groups in J&K. There is no denying the fact that we are the worst sufferers as far as terrorism is concerned, yet the western world appears to be ignorant and there is lack of appreciation of the Indian position on Kashmir and cross-border terrorism.

Perhaps these facts have not been property made known to them by our diplomats, who have by and large failed us miserably. They have not been successful in projecting India's image and all the related issues before the world public in proper perspective. All this requires immediate correction and overhauling so as to restore coordinated functioning and effective communication at the global level. Because of our wavering foreign policy and some diplomatic mishandling, we have not been able to forge any sincere friendship around us. Now let us be clear about our national goals.

This is the first time in the recent times when our PM has been able to play his diplomatic cards intelligently. He showed his guts by calling a spade a spade. He made it clear that he could be blunt, frank and loud to tell the reality to the would community. Though the U.S.A. needs General Musharraf more than Mr Vajpayee, yet he was successful in highlighting India's apprehensions. In Afghan affairs we must play an active role in the formation of a government and in its reconstruction and rehabilitation. Also, we must forge strong ties with Mr Blair and Mr Putin.


K. L. BATRA, Yamunanagar

Weak leaders: It has been the misfortune of India that it has got weak leaders who care much for their vote-banks rather than national interests. Actually, India is not a poor country but is poorly managed. It has become a country of scams and scandals, and the leaders at the helm are responsible.

Just see Pakistan, which is financially, militarily and in all other respects much weaker than India, is always busy in anti-India propaganda and sponsoring terrorism in India. Its leaders have always been speaking in abusive language against India. It is high time that Indian leaders boycott Pakistan in all respects. Rough and tough attitude should be adopted against Pakistan as that country understands only this kind of language.

The first and foremost work before Indian leaders should be to combat terrorism in J&K and no further bloodshed should be allowed there.

The Indian Government should shed its soft foreign policy and make the changed dynamic policy known to the world powers. The government should also focus on improving the economic health of the country. The maladies like corruption, poverty and illiteracy should be eradicated on a war-footing.

D. P. JINDAL, Mandi Gobindgarh

Ties with the USA: It appears Mr Vajpayee's three-nation goodwill sojourn has been quite successful. Because of the ineffective and far-fetched viability of 6+2 for sorting out things in the post-Taliban Afghanistan, India's rightful place in global politics, especially in Afghanistan, is being perceived seriously. India has succeeded in convincing President Putin, Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair that it can play a vital role in Afghanistan.

It is good and to India's advantage to have cordial relations with the only super power of the world — if America plays fair — but it is equally good and advantageous to have stronger bonds with Russia, the traditional ally of India. In the present circumstances America's predicament can be understood, but whether it will veer round to India's point of view after achieving its objectives in Afghanistan is uncertain. So proximity and collaboration with Uncle Sam should be established without souring age-old ties with Russia, which also needs America for its economic revival and resurgence. Will Indian diplomacy rise to the occasion to help India attain a place of prominence in global politics? Only time will tell.


Free drinks

This refers to the shocking news of a five-star hotel of New Delhi offering weekly free drinks on Monday evenings to ladies. The objective is to generate a new set of customers and use women as attractive show pieces for its bar. It is surprising that both the Union and Delhi governments have ignored such a move distorting Indian culture.

City night life in Delhi is already polluted with pubs, restaurants and hotels violating norms by late-night drinks and dances by "high-society" people patronised by big political guns. Free drinks will promote the drinking habit among ladies, besides making them vulnerable to sexual exploitation.



Pervez spits venom

Apropos the news analysis by Mr Hari Jaisingh under the heading "Pervez spits venom" (Nov 12), Gen Pervez Musharraf seems to have taken a cue from the German war-monger, Dr Goebbles who believed in the dictum: "Tell a lie hundred times and it will become the truth." This world has seen the result of such lies. His predecessors too had taken similar postures occasionally and he cannot surpass Sir Zafarulla, who delivered the longest speech in the UN on Kashmir. The General should be wise enough to understand that Kashmir cannot be given to him on a platter. It is not the English sitting at the helm of affairs who handed over a large chunk of this country to his forefathers in 1947 to be named Pakistan which is actually “Napakisthan”.


Lies & half-truths: Gen Pervez Musharraf, as President of an independent state, has every right to put his nation’s viewpoint before the United Nations General Assembly. It is but natural that Pakistan's viewpoint has to be at crossroads to the Indian viewpoint.


Champion of rule of law

Apropos the opinion in the news ‘Bharucha: A champion of rule of law’ (The Tribune, Nov 8) a strict constructionist in legal circles and champion of human rights as per discernible past, has now taken over as the Chief Justice of India.

Should an ordinary citizen expect that the champion like his predecessor would be a crusader against pollution, corruption and autocracy (bureaucratic and ministerial) to deliver prompt and cost prohibitive justice through arbitrator courts as precursor to judicial courts and will continue his tirade against the move to regularise illegal concrete jungles on the tracts of land to serve as green belts in the metros, states and U.Ts, rising automobile driving menace by minors, debarring of the plying of old automobiles beyond specific time to ease out the burden on the dilapidated roads network to curb the monstrous pollution?

J. S. BHOGAL, Dasuya

Gifts galore

There is a (mal)practice of exchanging gifts, specially costly ones like gold jewellery. There is no harm if these are exchanged among relatives and friends, but often these are given for other reasons to the obligers by those obliged. This practice is punishable with imprisonment of not less than six months which can be extended up to five years under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.


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