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India at war with itself

H.K. Dua’s front-page editorial, “India cannot be at war with itself” (Aug 8) was timely. Mr Dua has aptly diagnosed the cause of Jammu region’s present volatile situation. The politics of Hindutva spearheaded by the BJP and other likeminded outfits will endanger the secular and democratic image of the state.

The separatists are always on the prowl to see sectarian elements gaining ground. Both communities had shown restraint and cordiality in the Valley despite extreme 
provocation, but this time it has vitiated the atmosphere. Let us be vigilant and alert.

Capt RAJIV GANDHI (retd), Amritsar


I agree that even during the war with Pakistan in the
past, Pakistanis were never successful in separating
Jammu and Kashmir from India through the National Highway that can affect food, eatables, petrol and diesel supplies to that state.


We proudly say that from Kanyakumari to Srinagar, India is one and the people of different castes and religions are the citizens of the country. Why, then, think of creating one more state?

No doubt, Jammu and Kashmir is burning. The Centre and the Opposition parties should resolve the problem in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility.

SIMMI MOHINDRU, Jalandhar City


The BJP has covered a sizeable political space all over the country during the Congress-led UPA rule. The Congress has failed to project real secularism. Nehru had declared in his writings that Hindu nationalism was dangerous. So also thinkers like Tolstoy. Though they had praised Gandhiji, they did not fail to point out that his politics was based on purely Hindu brand.

Both the BJP and the Congress constitute a massive Hindu vote which floats between the two parties with great ease. In the interest of national unity and integrity, both should stop opposing each other and implement reforms in a big way. They should sit across the table and hammer out reasonable guarantees for the security of minorities. The time is now or never.

Lt-Col CHANAN SINGH DHILLON (retd), Ludhiana


I don’t agree with the view that the order passed by former Jammu and Kashmir Governor, Lt-Gen S.K. Sinha, is the root cause of the problem. Transferring a barren piece of land is nothing compared to thousands of crores the government has been spending on Haj subsidy for decades. Surprisingly, the government has turned a blind eye to decades of violence against the Hindus in the Valley. It is simply not bothered about the Hindus’ welfare.

The Hindus, displaced by terrorists, live like refugees in their own homeland. The seeds of this agitation were not sown by Lt-Gen S.K. Sinha but by Muslim fanatics in the late seventies and continuously nurtured by parties like the Congress, the PDP and the National Conference. Parties like the NC and the PDP are playing with fire. Aren’t they duty-bound to maintain peace? Then, why single out the BJP?



We zealously claim that Kashmir is very much an integral part of India but we treat Jammu’s Hindus very differently. It is because of the government’s failure that the problem of Jammu is allowed to grow and ferment.

The Amarnath Shrine Board merely asked for some temporary land for two months
for pilgrims. Why should one object to this genuine and legitimate request? Why
was the land first allotted and then withdrawn? Obviously, it is a great injustice to
Amarnath pilgrims.

For Haj pilgrims, the Centre gives lot of facilities, but for Hindus none. The Centre talks of secularism and national integration but appeases Muslims at the cost of Hindus. This time, the government has bent backwards to please the Muslims of Kashmir, the Hurriyat Conference and the PDP who think Pakistan is their benefactor as they have threatened to cross the LoC and sell their produce in Muzaffarabad.

Secularism implies that everyone is equal in the eyes of the law irrespective of one’s caste, creed and religion. Religion is a matter of personal choice and one is free to convert to any religion of his/her choice. But tragically our politicians are playing on ethnic lines to garner votes and remain in power without realising the damage they are causing to India. When will wisdom dawn upon such unscrupulous politicians?

S.P. SHARMA, Mumbai

Quotas can’t continue forever

The world is growing at a faster pace. Developed countries like the USA, Japan and Canada have far better technology than India because of their skilled workforce. In India, the deserving ones don’t get adequate opportunity to prove themselves because of the reservation of seats for the SC, the ST and the OBCs even in professional institutions like the IIMs and IITs.

Nowadays, good students find it difficult to enter medical and engineering colleges because of quotas. As a result, some students are under depression and feel disillusioned. I am not for scrapping quotas. But there must be a time limit for quotas and they can’t continue in perpetuity.

The government should provide free education, fee concessions to the
economically weaker students, but their performance should be judged purely
on merit. India can grow only if its people’s capabilities are judged on the basis
of their merit and not quotas.



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