Criminal MPs: onus squarely on voters

I refer to H.K. Dua’s front-page editorial, “Parliament — A Sadhu’s sanctuary” (Aug 26). Criminals, musclemen and corrupt politicians in Parliament resort to violence and stall proceedings of Parliament at will. These ruffians care two hoots about Parliament’s sanctity. The August 24 incident was a repeat of the violent drama enacted in the UP Assembly a few years back.

It was surprising to watch an absconder MP flexing his muscles in a shameful act in the Lok Sabha. Who is responsible for electing these criminals? The defaulters are parties and voters who allow them to permeate into the country’s fluid political system. The electorate can play an important role in cleansing the political system and help restore the sanctity of the highest lawmaking body.

Col KULDIP SINGH GREWAL (retd), Patiala





Every sane person has doubts over the quality of members we have in Parliament. Some of them are representatives of mafia dons, land grabbers, smugglers, kidnappers and murderers. They entered Parliament only to serve their long-term interests, not for social service.

The parameters and roadmap for elections to Parliament and state legislatures have degenerated so much that a person of high calibre and integrity like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has no chance to win a Lok Sabha election.

The late John Kenneth Galbraith, former US Ambassador to India in the early sixties, in his political novel, The Triumph, had aptly called India a “functioning anarchy”. It is time the Election Commission or the Supreme Court intervened to stop the entry of the people with criminal background to Parliament and state legislatures.



Parliament has not become a sanctuary for only one Sadhu Yadav. With the passage of time, it has become a sanctuary for a large number of law breakers, underworld dons, dacoits and smugglers. There seems to be no remedy because corruption is eating into the vitals of the country.

Since every institution has become rotten, we can only pray for the re-birth of Sardar Bhagat Singh. If you ask any person above 80 years or so, he will hail the British rule. For, while countries like the US, UK, Canada have leaders, most of our leaders are looters, putting self before service.

GURDEV SINGH, Old Rajpura (Patiala)


The telecast of the scene of indiscipline pervading the august House was most disturbing and insulting to the electorate. Why do we expose our failings on Doordarshan? It was not difficult to compare Parliament with a village panchayat where the people often try to settle their personal scores.

When a member speaks, he is invariably interrupted by others. The Speaker is helpless. People’s interest in watching the proceedings is lost when the House is adjourned abruptly. The majority of the members are educated and learned. They know that the Speaker alone cannot control the MPs. Why can’t they intervene and use their good offices in restoring normalcy in the House?



The only solution to the problem is to awaken the people through special campaigns by the media, NGOs, intellectuals on how valuable their vote is. Students too should be taught about voting and elections. The whole focus should be on defeating people like Sadhu Yadav.

The educated lot in the villages and towns should form an integral part of the awakening process; they must take the lead in exposing people like Sadhu Yadav at the time of elections so that people know the true meaning of voting and elections.



Parliament is meant for discussing national problems and passing laws after a thorough debate and discussion. However, now it has been reduced to a battlefield where members exchange blows and fisticuffs. Who cares for the rulebook or orientation programmes for members on the parliamentary business? The members want to force their own rules on Parliament and disrupt the proceedings whenever possible. This is done mainly to demonstrate one-upmanship and gain cheap publicity.

Until and unless strict action is taken against the tainted ministers and members, such incidents will continue, bringing a bad name to our country in the comity of nations. While political parties should stop giving tickets to tainted candidates and criminals, people must defeat them at the hustings and vote for only the right candidates.

NIKHIL BHARDWAJ, Shahkot (Jalandhar)


Of farmers’ compulsions

I respect the views of Prof Aulakh and Prof K.S. Pannu against rice cultivation. Their arguments are justified because paddy crops consume enormous ground water and electric power leading to the fast dwindling of the underground water table and power shortage in industry with a spin-off effect on employment.

However, farmers are not ready to abandon rice cultivation not because of profit maximisation but due to minimum labour requirement from sowing to harvesting. The farmer has just to run his tubewell and sell the produce to the market. He is unwilling to switch over to sugarcane, cotton or vegetables because these crops are highly vulnerable to pest disease and excessive rains. Moreover, these crops require constant labour during the entire season.

The price of rice is also relatively free from market fluctuations because of exports. In the ultimate analysis, farmers will switch off rice cultivation only when underground water goes deep and the subsidy for free power is withdrawn.


Not for combat job

I endorse the views of Lieut-General Harwant Singh (retd) in his article “Women in Army” (Aug 18). His observations are ground realities based on his long experience. Women are known for modesty, kindness, constructive and defensive approach. They are not inferior to men; they have their own spheres to prove their mettle. However, combating stands against her natural instinct.

The writer has quoted umpteen examples to prove his logic. If women officer/soldiers are entrusted combating job, this will affect the combating power of the Indian Army.




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