Dangers of criminalised politics

In his article “Criminals in the House: The danger is collective, so is the solution” (June 12), H.K. Dua has warned the parliamentarians and the government of the dangers of criminality emanating from within Parliament House. The difference between an intellectual and a criminal is that the former has limits and the latter knows no bounds. Devils and saints have no meeting point. In these circumstances, can we expect any healthy debate in Parliament?

“Ek machhli sare talab ko ganda kar deti hai”, but in the sarovar of democracy here, we find scores of sharks eagerly waiting for the opportunity to create power blocks within the House to legalise their activities outside Parliament.

Col KULDIP SINGH GREWAL (retd), Patiala





It would be very difficult to contain the evil. The malady is not confined to the ruling parties at the Centre or in the states. Its tentacles have spread far and wide and embraced almost all political parties. Mr Dua aptly describes the danger as collective and so is the solution.

Morality apart, the political discourse needs to take into account the demands of realpolitik. Some parties are crucial to the survival of the present government. Consequently, to seek the ouster of their ministers is tantamount to signing the death warrant of this government.

In the present scenario, the best option is to allow the law to take its own course. If proven guilty, the ministers will have to go. In the meantime, let the government run its course. Unless the laws are suitably amended to bar tainted people from contesting the elections, there is no other option.

K.M. VASHISHT, New Delhi


The taxpayer’s money is being squandered in creating chaos, confusion and disorder in the House. Are there no other ways to register protest against tainted members? The United Progressive Alliance’s action of giving ministerial berths to black sheep, leaving aside their coalition compulsions, cannot be condoned. But all concerned should pay heed to Mr Dua’s invaluable views, which I fully endorse, that as the danger posed by mafia groups is collective, it has also to be faced collectively by all parties together.



It is doubtful whether political parties can resolve the issue by raising an accusing finger at others and protecting the dubious and the guilty in their own fold. Be it a Lalu or Advani, a Taslimuddin or Modi, a Jayalalithaa or George Fernandes, everyone without exception should be kept away from the legislature.

There is no ideology, no principles, no loyalty and no sense of responsibility to the nation in a person who has no respect for the law of the land and has thrived by his bullish and unlawful means. In the present political set-up, it may not be possible to cleanse our Parliament and the government at the Centre and in the states of criminal elements through legal means. Every political party must undertake the moral responsibility of keeping itself free of criminal elements and of dubious integrity, whether they have been convicted or not.

The problem is not limited to just one political party or only to Parliament. It is a national and hence a collective problem and should be tackled as such. Blocking the proceedings of Parliament or a State Assembly will encourage criminalisation of politics as this act itself implies a violation of rules and set norms in a parliamentary democracy.


Road safety

More vehicles and better roads are indicators of progress. However, proper and safe use of these facilities is extremely important for road safety. Everyday, hundreds of people meet with serious road accidents resulting in avoidable loss of life and property. Most road accidents take place due to lack of proper warning to drivers, grant of driving licence without proper driving tests, drunken driving and underage driving.

Road accidents can be reduced considerably if the following measures are strictly implemented: First, hold the licensing authority concerned responsible for granting driving licence to untrained and ineligible persons like children. Secondly, driving licence should be given only on completion of proper and adequate training from a government recognised driving school. These schools must have qualified instructors and proper driving tracks.

Thirdly, suspend the driving licence of those found driving under the influence of alcohol for a reasonable period. Also, finally, hold parents responsible for under-age driving.

Col D.S. DHALIWAL (retd), Patiala

Unscientific serials

Doordarshan Delhi (DDI) telecasts serials like Kyamat, Aap Beeti, Hawayen, Agnipath etc which are full of superstitions, ghosts and spirits. Such unscientific serials have a negative effect on the thinking of people, particularly the illiterate and of rural background. Will this create scientific temper among children and young people? Are we making India a developed country by 2010? The telecast of such serials should be banned immediately in larger public interest.


Warning on Sukhna

The news item regarding the delta formation in the Gobind Sagar (May 25) is a matter of great concern for the well wishers of the Sukhna Lake. Both have many similarities with, of course, some difference in scale.

The Sukhna has a relieving feature that its unwanted silted water, which is now being allowed to pass through it and leave behind its silt, can be diverted via a by-pass channel. This will mean a substantial reduction in the silt being now deposited in the lake. Further, this channel can also be used as a sedimentation tank (capable of being flushed periodically) for de-silting the rest of lake's water. No new land is needed for it and its cost may not exceed Rs 40 lakh. This is not possible in the case of the Gobind Sagar where its power houses will be thrown out of action.

Prudence requires that this warning should be taken very seriously. Every possible effort should be made to provide such a channel at the earliest and thus preserve the balance capacity of the Sukhna for generations to come. Once this is done, the annual exercise of de-silting the Sukhna with shramdans and so on will become a matter of history and result in huge savings.

S.P. MALHOTRA, Engineer-in-Chief (retd), (Irrigation), Panchkula


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