Strengthening Indo-Myanmar relations

I refer to G. Pathasarathy’s article, Myanmar deserves attention: India’s dithering has helped China. This is an overview of India-Myanmar relations. While quoting from Sudhir Devare, the writer had credited India’s astute diplomacy for Myanmar army’s help in fighting Indian insurgents in the North-East during 1995, 2000, 2001 and 2004. But, it has so far contributed only in “Operation Golden Bird” in 1999. The crackdown was considered by the Indian policy-makers as a big blow to the insurgents, though training camps have been shifted to other areas.

The routes of infiltrated insurgents from Bangladesh into the North-East region are through Mizoram, Tripura and Assam’s Cachar region. The international border here is porous and less defended by our security forces than through Myanmar where the insurgents have to take long routes on foot through the jungles and terrain hostile for habitation.

As regards Myanmar becoming an ASEAN member, the writer says it would ease out New Delhi’s fear of Myanmar becoming a Chinese satellite. This is doubtful as the Myanmar-China military cooperation is not only in the transfer of hardware. Chinese instructors are giving military training to the Myanmar’s army. Above all, Myanmar has provided China, a direct sea route to the Bay of Bengal allowing China to build listening post in the Cocos Island and lent host of other facilities, posing a threat to India’s security.


The writer has suggested an arrangement for transporting the gas pipeline to Tripura through a Myanmar-India corridor bypassing Bangladesh. This goes in contrast to the geographical location of India’s North-Eastern states. Tripura, which shares 865-km-long international border with Bangladesh, doesn’t share any geographical proximity with Myanmar. If the pipelines are laid to Tripura bypassing Bangladesh, the policy execution will be difficult.

SHIVANANDA, defence analyst,


A lesson for Pakistan

This refers to the report Respect how as Indians do, say Pak lawmakers (June 1). Ironically, Pakistan, the greatest threat to peace, is admiring the strength of our democracy and our law-abiding people. Now our neighbour is finally realising that Indians’ respect for the law is immense and no cross border terrorism can create barriers in their path.

In Pakistan, the people and the ruling and opposition parties are increasingly getting fed up with the military bureaucracy ruling their country. It is the military bureaucracy which is largely responsible for the country’s poor state of affairs.

In India, however, the rule of law reigns supreme. Our judiciary is potent enough to adopt all effective and lawful measures enshrined in the Constitution. It provides justice to all the people without any discrimination.


Improper use

The Punjab School Education Board’s use of the word “matriculation” in the certificates seems to be improper. Matriculation means qualifying examination for getting admission in college or university after Standard X. Its usage is improper for the simple reason that these days students no more shift to college or university after Standard X.

Moreover, as other Boards have switched over to “secondary” instead of “matriculation”, it would be better for the PSEB to fall in line.

Garhshankar (Hoshiarpur)

Reschedule CET

There is a strong reason for Panjab University to reschedule (either advance or postpone) CET due to be held on June 17. For, those who have cleared the entrance examination of Banaras Hindu University will have to appear for the Main examination on June 18 at Banaras. Hence this appeal to the university authorities for rescheduling the June 17 CET.


Masters of delay

How I agree with Mr C.L. Arora’s views Officialism: The missing politician (May 31). Indeed, our public servants are the masters of delay and indecision. Indifference and apathy are also their assets. Unfortunately, this “couldn’t care less” psyche has now infested our diplomatic services too, which was once known for its sensitiveness and helping nature.

I approached the High Commission of India, London, twice seeking advice and information to obtain P.I.O. Card on March 7 and 18 and followed by an approach to its Counsellor (Administration) on 27. There wasn’t any courtesy or decency of even an acknowledgement.

Thereafter, I wrote to Mr Kuldeep Bhardwaj, Minister (Information) at the High Commission on April 20. I was shocked at the dilution of standards. Mr Bhardwaj did reply, but he denied that there was dilution of standards; he emphasised that the information asked for was available on the website and that the High Commission of India was keeping up with technology. I got this reply after four letters. At last, it showed its humane face to an octogenarian with an implicit advice to keep up with the technology.

India is indeed keeping up with technology, but not with its cherished ethics and norms. Should those within and outside India, who are not technologically advanced, be treated like this?

Bromsgrove (UK)

Bane of dowry

Though India is a progressive nation, the prevalence of dowry system has affected its image. Not a day passes without dowry deaths and torture of women who do not bring enough dowry with them. Unable to bear the torture, some brides are forced to commit suicide. The government will have to tighten laws to tackle the growing dowry menace. Public awareness needs to be spread among all sections, especially youth, against the dowry system.




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