Criminals have no right to be ministers

HK. Dua’s front-page editorial, “When a criminal can sit in the Union Cabinet” (Nov 30) has given enough food for thought for the right thinking people. Over the years, there is general disillusionment about the conduct of our elected representatives, particularly our MPs and MLAs. Our leaders have created a corrupt system, a system that has destroyed the values of Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Lal Bahadur Shastri.

Leaders like Shibu Soren, Mayawati, Lalu Prasad Yadav have crucified principles for the sake of political expediency. As long as they are in power, they have their own axe to grind and serve their kith and kin.

Our political parties have thrown the Constitution to the wind. Look at the army of ministers and other plum positions at the Centre and in the states. When the NDA leaders raise an accusing finger at the UPA leaders, it is like the pot calling the kettle black. All leaders are chips of the same block. “Har shaakh pe ullu baitha hai/Anjam-e-gulistan kya hoga?”sums up the present dismal scenario.

M.L. DHAWAN, Chandigarh



I fully endorse Mr Dua’s view that the political system should not be a sanctuary for the criminals and the corrupt. They somehow manage to enter our representative institutions and make a mockery of the Constitution. Our Parliament is a sacred institution and hence these criminals should not be allowed to pollute it. The same is the case with the state legislatures.

Once the criminals enter Parliament, they are only bothered about minting money through shady deals. They are least bothered about national interest or serving the common man. It is time they are kept away from all the legislatures. Otherwise, the whole system will collapse.

S.N. SHARMA, Gaddi Kheri Rohtak


Mahatma Gandhi believed in the dictum that the ends should justify the means. Over the years, this has changed to suit the selfish interests of petty politicians. Consequently, the entry to Parliament and state legislatures is the privilege of those who have the means, muscle power and can manipulate the bureaucracy and businessmen who, in turn, have their own axe to grind.

To grab power, they gang up irrespective of their denominations, much less for the ideals enshrined in our Constitution. This disturbing trend needs to be reversed to save the democracy from the stranglehold of the criminals.



Mr Dua’s front-page editorial is bold, highlighting the criminalisation of politics at the top. The principle of good governance has been given a go-by and all the political parties use the criminals to remain in power and suit their convenience.

Surprisingly, the Congress which swears by democracy and which fought for the country’s freedom, depends upon criminals to remain in power. Even the P.V. Narasimha Rao government depended upon the support extended to by Mr Shibu Soren’s Jharkhand Mukti Morcha. It took the JMM’s help to prove majority in the Lok Sabha with questionable underhand deals.

Mr Dua rightly observed that “essentially the ground is slipping underneath the feet of leaders and they could see the dangers ahead.” Ultimately, who will bell the cat? “Courts” is the only answer to this question. It is only the judiciary which can deliver speedy justice with exemplary punishment.

M.P.S. RANDHAWA, Dhapai Kapurthala


In the present scenario, the political parties allocate party tickets to those with muscle and money power, win the elections and capture power. The Election Commission should be empowered to take stern action against those tainted leaders. Their nomination papers must be rejected. It would, however, be nice if the political parties themselves refrain from giving tickets to the tainted leaders to contest elections.

SIMMI MOHINDRU, Jalandhar City

Case for reducing LPG cost

The rate of VAT on LPG for domestic use has been reduced from 12.5 per cent to 4 per cent from April 18, 2006 by inserting the said commodity in the list of declared goods under Section 14 of the Central Sales Tax Act, 1956 vide the Finance Act 2006 (Act No 21 of 2006).

However, no benefit of reduction in the rate of tax (Rs 22.41 a gas cylinder) has been passed on to the public. Before the above amendment, the tax element @ 12.5 per cent was Rs 32.96 in the total cost of Rs 296.60 of a gas cylinder. After the amendment, the tax element is reduced to Rs 10.55. But the gas cylinder’s cost remained the same — Rs 296.60 — instead of reducing it to Rs 274.19.

The Centre should look into the matter and pass on the benefit of Rs 22.41 a gas cylinder, on account of reduction in the rate of VAT, to the consumer.

DHARAM PAL, Jalandhar


I am an educated lady and am in the academic field. I often wonder why some parents suffer from son-fixation and are not happy with the birth of a girl child in the family. Is it because of insecurity?

My point is that why should parents (or anyone for that matter) feel insecure even when the daughters are financially independent and lead their own life without any support?




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