Punjab cops’ image takes a beating

I have no doubt that most people with Indian blood like myself will fully support The Tribune editorial “Poor Captaincy” (Sept 23) criticising the Punjab Chief Minister’s lousy reaction after the brutal atrocity committed against the students in Ludhiana.

As a Congress sympathiser and socialist, it does not give me any pleasure in reminding the Chief Minister that Indians won the right to protest after enormous sacrifices by people like Mahatma Gandhi and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose. So it is a matter of shame that in today’s Punjab, a Congress government has tolerated brutality. This reminds me of the brutal lathi charge against peaceful protesters taking part in the Salt March during the dark days of the wicked British Raj.

Considering while 20 harmless protesting daughters of Punjab were being molested and their dresses being torn, it is beyond belief that the Chief Minister failed to order senior police officers accompanying him to control their 100-odd goons in uniform. Thanks to the images of this atrocity flashed on the Internet, Punjab’s reputation has been adversely affected.

PARAMJIT BAHIA, Lordswood, Southampton (UK)



The editorial truly reflects the people’s sentiments. It is very sad to see that the police are here only to show their muscle power to the people. But who cares? Democracy no longer guarantees freedom of speech, freedom of peaceful protest and right to employment.

After great efforts, if a student gets a degree/diploma, where will he/she go in the sea of vast employment? One can’t see an advertisement for government jobs in the newspapers for years together. What will be the country’s future if protesting students are beaten blue and black by the police?

The editorial rightly observes that students should have been heard and given a satisfactory reply. After all, they were not criminals or terrorists.

KHAJAN SINGH, Kapurthala


The Tribune’s front-page report with photo (Sept 22) reflected the true image of our police. It was a pathetic picture of power prevailing over peace; a disgraceful display of raw force and brutality by the Punjab Police, made merely to please a mighty Chief Minister who, ironically, does not get tired of boasting about his government’s performance.

It this is what the government’s idea of performance is, then Punjab should be put under the President’s rule. It seems to be the government’s unwritten policy to make unlimited (ab)use of power to crush anything that comes in its way — be it a peaceful protest by innocent girl students or a resilient resistance of a respectable cadre officer to bow against the aggressive assault of an unruly police officer.

The bizarre assault on an IRS officer without any provocation by a tainted Punjab DSP is a fine example of the functioning of the state police. The government has added these new feathers in its cap by making a public display of its inhuman treatment of women and officers.



In India, we have many examples of police highhandedness. During Aurangzeb’s rule, many innocent people were butchered for no fault of theirs. Similar situation was faced by demonstrators at the Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar, on April 13, 1919. We call it the barbaric attitude of the British.

Now, in independent India, the police behaviour towards the common man has not changed much. A few recent examples prove it beyond doubt. At AIIMS, Delhi, the doctors and medical students were treated as dacoits and hardened criminals. At Chandigarh, teachers experienced a similar treatment from the Chandigarh Police.

Ludhiana’s peaceful students tasted the barbaric display of force from the police during a kisan mela at PAU. Can we approve of such a treatment to our citizens from the police in a free and democratic country? Self-introspection by the policemen can make a qualitative difference.

K.K. SHARMA, PAU, Ludhiana


Protests by the qualified unemployed and their brutal thrashing are a blot on democracy. The unemployed have no other alternative but to raise their voice and get it heard in the corridors of power. What is wrong in that?

Muflisee husne latafat ko mita detee hai; Bhookh adab ke sanchon mein nahein dhal saktee (Poverty demolishes the desire to be respectful; and starvation cannot be put into the moulds of respectful culture). The un-employed have to agitate. Their brutal thrashing by the police has no answer to the cause for which they are demonstrating without any discrimination of caste, creed, sex, age and health.

ONKAR SINGH RIAR, Sun Valley (Nevada, USA)

Pitfalls of reservation

I read Pran Chopra’s article “Divided by history” (Sept 18) with great interest. Clearly, the reservation policy will further widen the societal gap; it will create a vacuum in society in which the youths will lead an aimless life. Extremism will take a new turn and rise further. Corruption too will spread.

It is through excellence, hard work and dedication that higher levels of  development and scientific advancement are possible and mankind as a whole would reap the benefit of such achievements in the form of luxuries and better quality of  life. It is merit and dedication alone that can take a country forward, not reservations.

Politicians will do anything to win elections and stay in power. Playing with caste, creed, region and religions will again enslave the country and take it centuries back. There is still time to ponder over the issue. We must help India march forward through diligence and distinction, not through mediocrity and reservations.

Dr R.K. SHARMA, Faridabad



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