Sanctions on North Korea welcome

I refer to H.K. Dua’s article, “Tremors from the blast: North Korea cocks a snook at the world” (Oct 11). Mr Dua’s presumption during the conference of Asian and European Editors, while talking to the Singapore Prime Minister, whether the North Korea would explode a nuclear bomb proved 100 per cent correct.

The assurances of Chinese and Russians that North Korea would be brought round not to do so remained premature. The changed geopolitical circumstances have now compelled the Japanese to think on acquiring its own nuclear power, giving up its pacifist and non-nuclear policy.

The pride of US and China has been surely hurt and will attract reaction. Similarly, Japanese will be feeling uncomfortable due to this nuclear threat and try to keep North Korea at an arms length by snapping all good relations.

The UN has imposed sanctions; this was the only alternative to avoid future misadventure. Now the main task before the UN General Assembly should be to find out ways and means to desist other aspiring nations from acquiring nuclear power, posing a danger to the world.

R.S. HAMDARD, Hamirpur



North Korea has now confirmed what it said early this month. Where as the US and China feel insulted, South Korea and Japan feel insecure. According to India, North Korea has violated the international commitments and jeopardised peace, stability and security on the Korean Peninsula.

North Korea is the ninth nuclear power in the world. This proves the NPT’s failure as the number of nuclear powers has increased from five to nine. Bypassing of the UN has weakened its status. When some countries are declared an “Axis of Evil”, they feel insulted and start acting defiantly. The practice of unilateral attacks or actions on independent and sovereign countries may have generated a sense of insecurity in countries like North Korea. But this does not justify nuclear tests by any country.

North Korea’s nuclear test should in no case provoke the US and terrify South Korea and Japan. Stringent UN sanctions will further isolate North Korea. The best course is to initiate six-party talks and persuade North Korea to abide by the international opinion on nuclear armaments. President George Bush should never correlate the issue with the coming US elections. The world should be made fully interdependent through science, culture and trade.


Greening the highways

In India, there are long stretches of roads with no trees on either side. Trees will not only increase the aesthetic value but also serve four main purposes. First, trees provide oxygen which on roads is always less than the normal level as it is continuously consumed by the combustion of the fuel in the vehicles plying on the roads. They also help reduce the level of carbon dioxide produced by utilising it in photosynthesis. Secondly, trees, being a natural barrier to the flying dust, help prevent respiratory disorders among the residents in the vicinity. Thirdly, the leaves of the trees also stop the noise produced by the traffic. And finally, on any sunny day, the trees help protect the drivers from the glare of the sun.

The village panchayats should take up the responsibility of planting and caring of the trees along the highways falling in their respective jurisdictions. If every citizen contributes by planting suitable trees on the roads near their houses, in no time every lane in India will have the much-needed green cover.

NARESH KUMAR, Principal, SSDP School, Noormahal (Punjab)

A mirage

It is a matter of shame that due to dirty games played by politicians, facilities like clean drinking water, houses under the Indira Awas Yojna for the poor remain a mirage in Punjab. Our leaders are only interested in selling away the precious land to multinational companies. In such circumstances, who cares for the poor?


Outrageous act

I refer to the editorial, “MiG on ground” (Oct 4). It is being reported through Air Force sources in Adampore that the ill-fated plane may have come down through the use of adulterated fuel.

Adulteration in food, fuel and medicines is as bad as terrorism. Who are these unpatriotic elements that carry out these outrageous acts? Shouldn’t a law as tough and draconian like TADA and POTA be brought forth for these unpatriotic peddlers who sabotage India’s defence preparedness? Will the BJP support such an act?

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



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