Jaswant must name the mole in PMO

Former External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh has been claiming that a mole in Prime Minister P.V. Narasimaha Rao’s PMO had leaked nuclear secrets to the United States. He has, however, consistently refused to name him on the ground that he is doing this in public interest. It is one of the funniest examples I have heard.

This explanation deceives no one because public interest requires that the name of the mole should be exposed. Moreover, Mr Jaswant Singh should know that non-disclosure is an offence and keeping this information from the police is itself a crime under our penal law. With all this being very clear to him, why is he keeping silent?

Some wag may question that the motive is really to save not the mole but the recipient of the information from the mole (who could be no other than an official of the CIA). Mr Jaswant Singh’s hesitation may be to not to embarrass his old and publicly accepted close friends like Talbot and other officials in the US State Department.


Now that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has publicly dared Mr Jaswant Singh to name the mole if he (Mr Jaswant Singh) has the decency and courage to do so, there is no alternative for him but to name the person if he wishes to retain any credibility. If it is a fact, as he says, he must name the mole because there is no greater public interest than the country’s security which will suffer if the name is concealed. After all, Mr Jaswant Singh is writing his true memoirs and not an Agatha Christie or Hercule Poirot’s detective novels.

It should not be necessary to remind well read Jaswant Singh the famous invocation that there are times when it is a duty to speak and a sin to keep silent. “The present is the time to speak.”

Justice RAJINDAR SACHAR (retd), New Delhi

No compensation

I refer to the news-item, “Hope of compensation for Indians who fought for British army” (June 30). As a member of Parliament in the 13th Lok Sabha I had asked the then Union Labour Minister Mr Sher Singh a question, a supplementary, whether the Indian Government would ask the British Government to pay monitory compensation to those unfortunate Indian women who were forced into prostitution, by the British India government in military cantonments in India for the entertainment of British Tommies.

I also asked for handsome compensation for their descendents just like Japan has given to the Koreans and Chinese women who were used in a similar manner in these occupied territories for the Japanese soldiers. The
Japanese called them comfort women.

Mr Sher Singh, who represents an ultra right wing party, but like me is thick skinned Jat consuming too much desi ghee unlike me, couldn’t understand the question. But Mr Vajpayee understanding the national importance of this question quietly nodded to his labour minister who understandingly said the government would think about it. I haven’t heard about this thought since then.

We do hope the Indian Government would liaison with its British counterpart and get compensation for the Indian soldiers who died, were detained or received injuries in World War II, and appreciate the work of Col. Chanan Singh as the Indian government, as per the Indian Independence Act passed by the British Parliament in 1947, is responsible for all liabilities of its predecessor British Indian government, notwithstanding the self-respect of our women who were forced into entertaining the Tommies.

SIMRANJIT SINGH MANN, President, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) Quilla S. Harnam Singh

Don’t give F-16s to Pak

I refer to the editorial, “F-16s for Pakistan” (July 3). Definitely, the US’ decision to sell F-16 fighter planes to Pakistan is irresponsible. It is a shame that the US is out to strengthen the muscles of an undemocratic and belligerent nation.

The US is still in the dark about Pakistan’s role in promoting terrorism in the world. Pakistan has been the hub of terrorism for many years. It is helping the Taliban and covertly trying to regroup in Afghanistan to destabilise the Hamid Karzai regime. For, no dictator could or would sleep well with a new democracy growing next door.
It would be self-defeating for the US to help Pakistan with any weaponry as it would render all its efforts, hard work and sacrifices fruitless in fighting global terrorism and establishing peace, freedom and democracy in the world.



Ragging in colleges

Ragging is banned in colleges and universities. But this is only on paper. Seniors want to project their seniority but the very method is wrong. Affection, guidance and friendship can prove their  seniority. Why should freshers be ragged at all?

The authorities should curb this evil firmly to avoid ugly incidents like the one in Jalandhar Engineering College. The media too has a responsible role to play in this regard.

B.R. SALHOTRA, Pathankot

Scrap entrance test

This has reference to the editorial “Simply scandalous” (July 4). It is time to scrap the entrance test. Indeed, it amounts to double punishment for the same crime. It’s simply superfluous.

It’s sheer wastage of money, energy and time. In a way, it reflects poorly on out universities whose results are not taken on face value. Entrance test is actually a ‘hindrance test’. Let Plus Two results be the basis of admission to medical colleges as earlier.

K.J.S. AHLUWALIA, Amritsar

Neglected colony

Patiala’s DMW Railway Colony is in the news. The Standing Committee of Parliament attached to the Ministry of Railways visited it recently. Their report is confidential, but it remains to be seen whether its condition will change for the better.

This colony is a picture of woeful neglect. The approach road from Patiala railway station to the colony is full of potholes. Almost all roads in the colony need repairs. Children’s park and playgrounds are without fencing and are in a shabby condition.

Traffic and noise pollution is at its peak. Stray animals roam freely. Bull fighting is a common scene, endangering the residents. Maintenance of railway quarters is absolutely poor. No official has ever bothered to improve the colony’s condition.




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