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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
M A I L B A G

Level playing field

"Pitch Perfect” by Abhijit Chatterjee (Saturday Extra, September 29) is part of  the over-enthusiastic celebrations of Indian cricket’s moment of glory. Euphoria on winning the T20 World Cup is well-deserved but it has also exposed the unfair treatment meted out to all other sports by the government, politicians and media.

The government failed to recognise the achievement of the Indian hockey team winning the Asia Cup.

Cricket is given undue importance over other sports and that can spell disastrous consequences for the sports environment in the country. Chak De India should serve as a wake-up call for the government and sports administrators to revive the spirit among the youth.

Long-term sports policies, transparency in selections, accountability, professionalism in sports administration and promotion of popular players by the media and presenting them as role models for the youth can elevate not only cricket but sports in general. Sports administrators and media should shun any cricket bias and promote all sports.

VITULL K. GUPTA, Bathinda


 

 

A place for Urdu

"A place for Urdu” by Aparna Srivastava Reddy (Spectrum, August 26) and the letters in its response (September 16) were very interesting. Successive governments have failed to give Urdu its due. Rather, Urdu has been pushed backstage. Now it is chiefly read and written in Muslim-dominated areas.

Though everybody likes to listen to Urdu poetry and film songs laced with Urdu words, yet no one is ready to accept it as a national language. Chaste or Sanskritised Hindi can never become the language of the masses. Hindi with a flavour of Urdu is the common man’s language and yet it is given the status of an optional or additional subject in the school curriculum in different states.

Why should it be considered only as a language of the Muslims? If Urdu is made compulsory at school level, be it at the primary or higher level, this wrong notion would gradually take wing. In Punjab, Urdu is alive in Malerkotla and Qadian (Gurdaspur).

Both have a Muslim population and have their own schools. Otherwise, the younger generation is totally a stranger to Urdu. As poet Kalidas Gupta Riza aptly remarked: Hindu hai na Muslim hai Riza mazhab-e-Urdu, Donon hi ki aagosh mein ye phooli phali hai

BILAL AHMAD SHAMIM,Qadian

Path to humanism

The review “Path to Humanism” (Spectrum, September 2) by Ashok Vohra of Hari Shankar Prasad’s book The Centrality of Ethics in Buddhism: Exploratory Essays made interesting reading.

Buddhism’s humanistic character is reflected in its strong advocacy of non-violence and peace. The Buddhist philosophy, unlike other philosophies, does not take its starting point from the grand questions like “who is the creator of this world”?

Or “what happens to us after death”? Rather, it is more concerned with down-to-earth facts, about every one of us wanting to be truly happy and at peace with oneself.

Respected by spiritualists and non-religionists alike for centuries, Buddhism does not call for blind faith by its followers. Rather, it places a heavy emphasis on philosophical and metaphysical questioning about life and its meaning.

Buddhism stresses self-reliance and self-discipline and offers concepts that are more cosmic and less dogmatic. Buddhism regards the life of all living beings as interdependent and shows us the benefits of performing good deeds and wholesome acts to gain inner peace.

GAURAV JULKA, Ferozepore

Partition victims

This refers to Prabhjot Parmar’s write-up “Train of history” (Spectrum, August 5). Gandhiji said that Pakistan would come into being on his dead body. However, its creation took the lives of a million of people — Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims — all of who were ruthlessly killed. Two crores were uprooted.

Thousands of women and girls were abducted and raped. Barbarity supplanted humanity. What occurred in the wake of the Partition was perhaps among the goriest of gory happenings that has ever occurred in the world. Sahir Ludhianvi said: Zameen ney khoon ugla aasmaan ney aag barsaai / Jab insaanon key dil badley to insaanon pe kya guzri.

The very thought of the trauma we had to undergo while leaving our village in Pakistan when a mammoth mob of marauders raided it around midnight and the hardships we had to face in reaching India even now sends shivers down my spine.

More than a decade ago, I talked to some very old persons in Pakistan about the agonies of the Partition victims. Tears streamed from their eyes and they looked back nostalgically to the days they spent in their native villages in India.

An extremely angry man, who had lost 12 members of his family en route Ambala used very unpleasant language against the founder of Pakistan. I endorse Kuldip Nayar’s suggestion that the Parliaments of India and Pakistan should pass a resolution to express regret over what happened so as to bury that part of the past.

BHAGWAN SINGH, Qadian


 


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