Saturday, October 26, 2002
M A I L  B O X

The youth and law

REETA Sharma’s article "Inculcating respect for law in the youth" (October 12) made interesting reading. Gone are the days when the mere mention of the word law was enough to send shivers down the spine of law-breakers. Now law is a saleable commodity. The rich can buy it. This encourages rich brats to flout all rules with impunity. The chances of blowing law to smithereens increase manifold if the violator is a well-known figure. He knows that the law can’t catch him. The glaring examples of unpunished law-breakers set a bad precedent. This situation can be corrected if the youth are imparted proper training by their parents and teachers. The violators of law should also be severely punished.



Our system of education is one of the factors responsible for lawlessness among youth. In order to develop all the faculties of the students, we should, besides stuffing their mind with facts and figures, impart lessons in sacrifice and service. Pandit Nehru once said "The service of humanity is the best religion".



Keeping Urdu alive

One observation made in Khushwant Singh’s "Keeping Urdu alive" (October 5) deserves special notice: it is his statement, which is absolutely correct, that to talk of Urdu being the language of Muslims only is baseless motivated propaganda. In fact, that subterfuge has a long history behind it. In their day the British also made full use of it for their own ends. They had their colonial axe of divide-and-rule to grind. They welcomed every opportunity to widen still further the communal divide between the Hindus and the Muslims on whatever pretext was handy.

The British were also aware that all linguistic experts maintain that language goes not by religion but by region. However they preferred to ‘forget’ what did not suit their argument.



The surname and nom de plume of poet Triloki Nath are Kaamboj and T.N. Raz and not Kanoj and K.N. Raz as mentioned by Khushwant Singh in his write-up.

Raz writes humorous and satirical verses.

Urdu came into being as a mixed jargon serving as a common medium of communication between peoples speaking different tongues in the times of Shahjahan. It is not the language of Muslims only. The writer has rightly remarked that "the only way we can keep Urdu alive in India is through the use of Devnagari and scripts of regional languages". In this way people who cannot read Urdu can also enjoy the verses of great poets of this language.


Have you seen God?

This refers to Khushwant Singh’s "Have you seen God?" (October 19).

The writer has asked the readers if any of them have seen God? This very question was asked by Vivekanand from Ramakrishna Paramhansa. The answer from Ramakrishna was, "I see God as I see You".



If God loves virtue, why has He not made man wholly virtuous? Why has He burdened us with hatred, envy, gluttony, lust, sloth, pride, anger, avarice, cruelty, and other sins?

The author of such a grim tragedy of real life cannot be wise or benevolent. Even if God exists, it would be best for mankind to deny his existence and ignore him.


Old age

Apropos the write-up "Lament over old age", (October 5) by Khushwant Singh.

Old age is not the end of life. Instead life should be lived in such a way as if it were to last only for a day — the most efficient way of enjoying life to the fullest. In contrast to this approach we simply "look before and after and pine for what is not".

The old should rather look within themselves and they would find a person still full of life and enthusiasm.



In Crossword by Karuna Goswamy (October 5) Ali is mentioned as being the son of Prophet Mohammad. This is incorrect as Ali was the Prophet’s son-in-law and not his son. His only son from Maria called Ibrahim died at the age of two months. All his surviving children were daughters, one of whom was Ali’s wife.