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J&K: Putting things in right perspective

I read the editorial, “Accord in Jammu: It will help improve
situation in the Valley” (Sept 1). It is essential to place
the issues in the correct perspective. It is wrong to say
that Lt-Gen S.K. Sinha (retd), as the Governor of Jammu
and Kashmir, had allotted the land to Shri Amarnath
Shrine Board. He, as the chairman of the Board, had
made a request to the state government to make the
land available.

Consequently, the state government took three years to examine the case and after due diligence, approved the sale of land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board to make temporary prefabricated shelters at Baltal and Domail.

Only a small bit of the land belongs to the Forest Department and the rest are private holdings. The land is above the tree line and no cultivation or permanent settlement is possible. From October-end to mid-April, it remains completely cut off due to heavy snow in the area.


Once the news of possible sale of land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board was leaked out, protests started in the Valley. The PDP (whose ministers had cleared the case) withdrew support to the Ghulam Nabi Azad government which dropped the proposal.

The new Governor panicked and to placate the crowds in the Valley withdrew the earlier request for land by the Chairman of the Board. This step was meaningless because the government had already dropped the proposal. He was trying to be clever; though only by half: the valley half of the problem. It is this withdrawal
of request that led to the agitation in Jammu which led to further protests in
the Valley. As for the PDP, it is a case of running with the hares and hunting
with the hounds.

The politics of the Valley has been such that any issue, no matter how
insignificant or irrelevant, is cause enough to start an agitation, as long as
anti-India threat, Kashmiri identity and/or a communal slant or twist can be
worked into it. In the instant case, the alleged threat to Kashmiri identity is
not only baseless but ridiculous.

Lt-Gen HARWANT SINGH (retd), Chandigarh


The happenings in Jammu and Kashmir stir the soul of every Indian. Kashmir is still called a Paradise on Earth. Unfortunately, however, it is being put on fire, sometimes by thoughtless terrorists and other times by selfish politicians.

J&K is not a state where individual minds can play foul politics, but a state, where all political minds must come together to combat terrorism which can surely lead to peace in all parts of India.

USHA TANEJA, Fatehabad


Inculcate scientific temper

I read the editorial, “Mini Big Bang: Atom smashing is a giant step” (Sept 12). The comment on the negative role of some sections of the media on creating a baseless scare on the LHC experiments in Geneva is very timely. It is time all sections of the Fourth Estate reached a consensus in the larger interest of this country to inculcate scientific temper in the masses and not print or show anything which is sheer crass and does not stand the scientific scrutiny.

In this context, TV channels showing early morning shows like ‘Dainik Bhavishyaphal’ or ‘Stars for the day’ also do a great disservice to the viewers. Unlike in the West, modern science has come to India during the last few decades only. Our people still have a psyche, beliefs and faith more inclined towards superstition.

Consequently, any trigger through the media — print or electronic — further reinforces those beliefs and creates a wave like Lord Ganesh taking milk. Those of us who are fortunate enough to have modern education and access to science and technology have a social responsibility more than just doing routine jobs.

MADAN MOHAN, Palampur (HP)

Victory in Vienna

H. K. Dua’s front-page editorial “India’s hour” (Sept 8) was timely. During the Vienna conclave, the whole country was watching the proceedings with bated breath. Our officials who burnt the midnight oil to bring the opposing countries round to India’s point of view deserve thanks.

In India, some politicians were demanding Dr Manmohan Singh’s resignation before the final outcome of the Vienna conclave. The Opposition parties should have shown solidarity with the Centre at such a juncture because the NSG waiver is for the country and not for Dr Manmohan Singh or for the UPA.

Unfortunately, political parties in India suffer from a myopic attitude. That is why, they fail to see or pretend not to see the proud place India would occupy in the comity of nations once the US Congress clears the nuclear deal.

Prof LAKHA SINGH, GGS Khalsa College, Sarhali (Tarn Taran)


It’s true that India is emerging as a major power of the 21st century. It has
now become a nuclear power. No doubt, with this deal, India’s power and
technology sector will get a boost. We are having acute power shortage today.
The nuclear energy will make our power position surplus and the country can
meet its demand for electricity.


Call the bluff

I read Inder Malhotra’s article (Sept 5) with great interest. He has focussed on the ceasefire violations by Pakistan and brought out three noticeable “exclusive preserves” of the Army in Pakistan. These are: India’s policy, America policy and nuclear policy. None can dispute this. It is time our policymakers in South Block and PMO understand this clearly and prepare a counter-strategy — all this away from the media glare.

The writer is absolutely right that more than 30 violations of ceasefire by the Pakistan Army in a few weeks cannot be called as accident. It is part of the above-mentioned three-point allotted work of the Army in full association and support of the government in Islamabad.

Paradoxically, compared to India, Pakistan is one-sixth in population and also more than one-tenth in area. How dare they indulge in such acts! In fact, they have been doing so right from the day Pakistan was created in 1947.

India must act and nip the evil in the bud. Mere protests and Samjhauta bus will not do. India has to be a no-nonsense country. The policy of appeasement and non-reciprocal peace initiatives must stop.

C.K. SARDANA, Bhopal


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