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Heed the EC
Political parties must not vitiate the atmosphere

THE Election Commission’s advisory on Sunday night to the leaders of all political parties to exercise restraint and maintain highest standards of poll campaign was much needed. 

Pains of plenty
Farm produce going waste 
F
IRST, untimely rain accompanied by squally winds flattened the wheat crop in large parts of the northern region. Thanks to the approaching elections, the Punjab government has displayed extraordinary efficiency in announcing relief for the rain-hit farmers. 


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Is Mulayam serious?
“Off with English, computers” plea is weird
A
T a time when India is struggling earnestly to be in synch with the 21st century and become a world power, the Samajwadi Party has come up with a manifesto which is guaranteed to take the country back to the 19 th century and even beyond. It has vowed to abolish expensive English medium schools, stop the use of this “foreign language” in administration and in courts, and also banish computers wherever their functions could be carried out manually. 
EDITOR'S COLUMN

The enemy within
Threat to Pakistan comes from its outfits
by H.K. Dua
P
akistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi was in India for talks with Mr Pranab Mukherjee on November 26 last year. Mr Qureshi had hardly uttered the two words, “composite dialogue”, when a well-armed squad of his compatriots landed on Mumbai’s coast and indulged in one of the worst massacres India has suffered at the hands of terrorists.

OPED

Remembering Ambedkar
He contributed significantly to making of Constitution
by P. P. Rao
O
N April 14, 1891, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar was born in a poor and socially disadvantaged family in Maharashtra. He became one of the outstanding leaders of his time championing the cause of the downtrodden people with great courage of conviction.

North Korea’s Kim is back
by John M. Glionna and Ju-Min Park

There was pomp and circumstance, huge adoring crowds — not to mention lots of choreographed propaganda. A frail-looking Kim Jong Il, North Korea’s paternal “dear leader,” appeared last week before a newly elected Supreme People’s Assembly that reappointed him as the nation reigning military chief.

Delhi Durbar

  • PM: a stickler for propriety

  • Tytler’s detractors

  • Women power

Corrections and clarifications

 

 

 


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Heed the EC
Political parties must not vitiate the atmosphere

THE Election Commission’s advisory on Sunday night to the leaders of all political parties to exercise restraint and maintain highest standards of poll campaign was much needed. The commission was forced to issue it because all political parties have been brazenly violating the code of conduct. Unfortunately, even senior leaders have been indulging in name-calling and abusing their political opponents, sullying the campaign. Hitting rivals below the belt and fomenting passions and hatred through hate speeches were unheard of earlier. At times, the campaigns have crossed the limits of decency. Of what use is the code if leaders indulged in provocative and inflammatory statements? The code of conduct is rightly a “unique document”. It was evolved with the consensus of all the political parties. Its sole aim is to ensure a level-playing field for all and help the Election Commission conduct free and fair elections — and in an atmosphere devoid of acrimony and hatred.

The commission has also taken the politicians to task for distributing money to voters. In particular, it has deplored some leaders’ attempt to justify it in the name of “local custom”. It has reiterated that bribing voters with gifts or cash is a crime punishable under Section 171B of the Indian Penal Code and a corrupt practice under Section 123 (1) of the Representation of the People Act. Recent experience suggests that the commission, other than issuing notices and warnings, doesn’t have adequate powers to punish the violators. Surely, it should be given more teeth to take stringent action against those flouting the code of conduct and the law.

Having felt that the campaigning by the parties might reach a crescendo in the days to come, the commission has, in its advisory, issued a set of do’s and don’ts to the parties to maintain decorum and help conduct peaceful and orderly elections. In particular, it has drawn their attention to the Supreme Court ruling in the G.Y. Kanakarao vs E.V. alias Balasaheb Vikhe Patil case in which the court advised the senior leaders of all parties to disseminate the poll code to all the functionaries at various levels and help reverse the disturbing trend. There is merit in the Election Commission’s advice that the politicians ought to campaign on the basis of their policies and programmes so that a “congenial atmosphere” can be created for holding the elections.

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Pains of plenty
Farm produce going waste 

FIRST, untimely rain accompanied by squally winds flattened the wheat crop in large parts of the northern region. Thanks to the approaching elections, the Punjab government has displayed extraordinary efficiency in announcing relief for the rain-hit farmers. However, unionised farmers in some areas still took to protests as the official agencies dithered in lifting wet grains. Then there is the chronic shortage of storage space and gunnysacks. Even as the fresh produce has started arriving in mandis, godowns are overflowing with foodgrains procured last year, which saw a bumper crop. The inclement weather notwithstanding, this year too the harvest is promising, which, instead of spreading joy, is giving jitters to the government.

Where to keep foodgrains is the problem. That huge quantities of farm produce, fruits and vegetables are lost due to inadequate storeage facilities is well known. Due to the shortage of godowns and silos and the manual handling of foodgrains, not only a large chunk of the produce is lost to bad weather, insects and rats, but is also pilfered in transit. Yet not enough has been done, either at the state or Central level, to encourage private/public investment to improve and expand the existing infrastructure. High taxes in Punjab and Haryana keep off private buyers.

Driven by offbeat showers, farmers are keen to dump their produce at the mandis, where officials are under pressure not to lift rain-soaked grains. Appeals to farmers to bring dry produce go unheeded. Instead of resorting to protests, farmers should be happy that at least official agencies are buying wheat at the minimum support prices. Otherwise, wheat prices have crashed globally and exports make no sense. The FCI is already having a buffer stock three times more than the prescribed requirement of four million tones. That’s why someone at the Centre had this bright idea of passing on surplus foodgrains to starving Afghans as a goodwill gesture.

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Is Mulayam serious?
“Off with English, computers” plea is weird

AT a time when India is struggling earnestly to be in synch with the 21st century and become a world power, the Samajwadi Party has come up with a manifesto which is guaranteed to take the country back to the 19 th century and even beyond. It has vowed to abolish expensive English medium schools, stop the use of this “foreign language” in administration and in courts, and also banish computers wherever their functions could be carried out manually. That means most of the public schools would have to close down. And since the world was functioning even before computers came in, they too would have to be dumped in totality. That is not all. It also wants to do away with machinery, stock-trading and shopping malls. No wonder, everyone — including allies — has been asking: “Is the Samajwadi Party serious?”

How one wishes it was only a bad joke, but the party seems to be serious. And that is dangerous. Similar “friends of the poor” have played havoc with education and administration in Bihar, Gujarat and Bengal in the past leaving at least two generations without adequate knowledge of English. The only ones who would be happy with such turn of events would be India’s competitors like the Chinese who are spending billions of dollars on making their populace English-proficient. What is particularly distressing is that even when faced with a barrage of criticism and objections from friends and foes alike, the Samajwadi Party has only tried to tone down its anti-English and anti-computers tirade with hardly any retraction.

All this has been done in the name of the downtrodden, without appreciating that depriving them of English and computer literacy would condemn them to even more poverty and joblessness than what they currently suffer. The hypocrisy of it all is too blatant. Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav has sent both his sons to English-medium institutions – in fact also to Australia and Britain. We should oppose even if the former Defence Minister were to practice his weird agenda at home. Why should his children be made to unlearn their English for their father’s outdated opinions?

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Thought for the Day

All empire is no more than power in trust. — John Dryden

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The enemy within
Threat to Pakistan comes from its outfits
by H.K. Dua

Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi was in India for talks with Mr Pranab Mukherjee on November 26 last year. Mr Qureshi had hardly uttered the two words, “composite dialogue”, when a well-armed squad of his compatriots landed on Mumbai’s coast and indulged in one of the worst massacres India has suffered at the hands of terrorists.

Mr Qureshi’s talks with the Indian Minister of External Affairs were an immediate casualty, besides the 160-odd innocent lives India lost in Mumbai at the hands of the terrorists assembled and trained in Pakistan.

It is quite likely Mr Qureshi – like most people in high position in the civilian government of Pakistan – did not know what the terrorists or their masterminds were planning to do in Mumbai in what has now come to be known as India’s 26/11.

In a “Devil’s Advocate” interview with Karan Thapar on CNN-IBN telecast on Monday, Mr Qureshi has again sought to revive the composite dialogue idea which is lying somewhere unattended.

Mr Qureshi may be new in foreign affairs, but he is an astute politician to understand why India, whose wounds of 26/11 still remain unhealed, cannot resume dialogue with Pakistan.

Possibly, Mr Qureshi was reacting to Dr Manmohan Singh’s remarks at an interaction with newspersons in Delhi that the composite dialogue could not be resumed until Pakistan showed sincerity in punishing those guilty of the attacks on Mumbai and ending the terrorist menace against India originating from its soil. “This was the minimum condition”, the Prime Minister had said.

Twice during the last decade, Pakistan had in joint statements with India on the peace process agreed in writing that it would give up the path of terrorism and would be honest enough in seeking peace with India. Pakistan has repeatedly failed to live up to these assurances. And now Mr Qureshi says in his TV interview that Pakistan will not accept any conditions.

Mr Qureshi went one step further: “By refusing to talk, India would be promoting militancy and strengthening the hands of terror. The sooner you realise that, the better it is”. This is an astounding statement for its content as well as the tone made by its foreign minister, showing lingering insensitivity in Islamabad about India’s post-Mumbai hurt and the damage it has done to the sub-continental relations.

In a way, Mr Qureshi’s remark tends to absolve Pakistan from its responsibility of not doing much to tackle a proliferating tribe of terror outfits functioning with impunity on its soil. The training camps and communication network of the terrorists are still there daily planning more mischief under different banners.

His claim that the civilian government in Pakistan had taken “very positive steps” to dismantle terror infrastructure is at best a claim, as also the statement that the ISI had been “cleansed”. The civilian government has failed to tame the ISI which remains under the Army Chief’s control.

Mr Qureshi’s statement has actually come in the wake of the recent visit of the US President’s special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Mr Richard Holbrooke, and the new policy Mr Barack Obama has announced for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The US President wants to induct another 30,000-plus troops into Afghanistan and gift a massive package of economic aid to Pakistan in return for any help it may choose to give to US-NATO forces against the Taliban in the tribal areas.

Essentially, the Obama package is part of its policy to pull out from Afghanistan in another two or three years, certainly before he seeks a second term, and for this he wants to win against the Taliban in Afghanistan and in the tribal areas from where both Al-Qaida and the Taliban are operating.

In the US thinking, it is not possible to register a victory on the Taliban in Afghanistan unless it destroys the Taliban’s bases in the border areas inside Pakistan. This, in turn, would need cooperation of the Pakistan Army, which has used the Taliban for years to gain “strategic depth” in Afghanistan following the Soviet withdrawal.

The spread of the Taliban in Pakistan and the reported alliance between the Taliban in Afghanistan and the Taliban in Pakistan not only creates a new situation for the US, but should also worry the Pakistan Army.

The Taliban’s motivations come from the Wahabi Islam. And in collaboration with Al-Qaida and varied other fundamentalist groups in Pakistan, the Taliban has been able to spread influence within Pakistan. The Pakistan Army, particularly its offshoot the ISI, is still reluctant to accept that instead of Pakistan seeking a strategic depth in Afghanistan it is the Taliban which has been trying to acquire strategic depth in Pakistan.

Whether the Obama administration is able to induce the Pakistan Army to cooperate in its fight against the Taliban in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas remains to be seen. But the massive economic package which Mr Obama has held out as a carrot is aimed at making Pakistan join the battle against the Taliban.

The Pakistan Army has been cleverly making use of American dependence on Pakistan as a bargaining chip and there are already murmurs in Pakistan that the economic aid is not enough of compensation for its cooperation with the US.

Actually, it wants the US to put pressure on India to start the composite dialogue with Pakistan on several issues, but certainly on Kashmir. The Pakistani top brass has been conveying to Mr Holbrooke and other interlocutors that it cannot neglect the Pakistani border with India and as such cannot spare more troops for putting pressure on the Taliban in the tribal areas.

India, through quiet diplomacy, was able to dissuade the new administration in Washington from appointing a special envoy for India-Pakistan-Afghanistan to sort out sub-continental issues, as New Delhi is opposed to any third-party mediation on the Kashmir issue. Mr Holbrooke has been visiting Islamabad as well as New Delhi and it shows the Americans would like to impress upon India that it should not do anything which may make Pakistan feel insecure on its eastern border.

Despite 26/11, India has not done anything which may equip Pakistan with an excuse, or a false alarm. But New Delhi simply cannot accept the Pakistani aim being articulated by Mr Qureshi to link peace with India with its situation on its western border.

In effect, Pakistan has always tried to link terrorism growing on its soil with the Kashmir question – an equation no government in Delhi can ever accept.

Pakistan has to delink the need for fighting against terrorism being bred on its soil from the Kashmir issue. Nor should the Obama administration put up with this kind of argument which is diversionary in nature.

The spate of the suicide bombings within Pakistan should make its civil and military establishments realise that the tolerance, even encouragement, for the terrorist and fundamental outfits has not contributed to peace at home, and that considerable space has been given by the authorities to such groupings. The Pakistan establishment now must stop paying the bill when they are threatening even the existence of Pakistan. These groups have become so powerful that they are challenging the authority of the Pakistan state.

There are no indications that the Pakistan Army has decided to crack down on terrorist outfits. It is a well-trained army – one of the larger armies in the world – and knows all about the terror organisations that have flourished under its eye over the years, but it remains to be seen whether it will like to take them on at all.

A question was asked when General Pervez Musharraf was heading the Army and later the country whether he was able to fight terrorists or was even willing to do so. The same question has become relevant when Gen. Ashfaq Kayani is heading the Pakistan Army, but he has given no indication that he has decided to even defang the more dangerous of these outfits.

No one, not even the Americans, perhaps know where General Kayani actually stands. Surely, he understands that terrorism is not only a threat to peace on the subcontinent, but also to the very existence of Pakistan. The genie is out of the bottle. It is breathing down Pakistan’s neck now. 

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Remembering Ambedkar
He contributed significantly to making of Constitution
by P. P. Rao

B.R. Ambedkar
April 14 is B.R. Ambedkar’s anniversary

ON April 14, 1891, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar was born in a poor and socially disadvantaged family in Maharashtra. He became one of the outstanding leaders of his time championing the cause of the downtrodden people with great courage of conviction.

He piloted the Constitution through the Constituent Assembly with extraordinary ability. His speeches in the Assembly reflect his vast learning, depth of understanding and the ability to expound the principles underlying the provisions.

His last speech delivered on November 25, 1949, was prophetic as he voiced his apprehensions and concerns about the future of our independence and democracy. He asked: “On 26th January 1950, India will be an independent country. What would happen to her independence?”

He said: “What perturbs me greatly is the fact that not only India has once before lost her independence, but she lost it by the infidelity and treachery of some of her own people.” His anxiety was deepened by the fact that “in addition to our old enemies in the form of castes and creeds we are going to have many political parties with diverse and opposing political creeds.”

He queried: “Will Indians place the country above their creed or will they place creed above country” and answered: “This much is certain that if the parties place creed above country, our independence will be put in jeopardy a second time and probably be lost for ever. This eventuality we must all resolutely guard against. We must be determined to defend our independence with the last drop of our blood.”

His second thought was about the future of democracy. “There was a time when India was studded with republics, and even where there were monarchies, they were either elected or limited. They were never absolute.”

He cautioned against the path of devotion or hero-worship. According to him, “Bhakti in religion may be a road to the salvation of the soul. But in politics, Bhakti or hero-worship is a sure road to degradation and to eventual dictatorship.”

He was emphatic that “We must make our political democracy a social democracy as well. Political democracy cannot last unless there lies at the base of it social democracy.” He asserted that “liberty cannot be divorced from equality, equality cannot be divorced from liberty. Nor can liberty and equality be divorced from fraternity. Without equality, liberty would produce the supremacy of the few over the many. Equality without liberty would kill individual initiative. Without fraternity, liberty and equality could not become a natural course of things.”

Emphasising the need for promoting fraternity – a sense of common brotherhood of all the Indians – which gives unity and solidarity to social life, he said that it was going to be a very difficult task than it had been in the United States and elaborated it: “The United States has no caste problem. In India there are castes. The castes are anti-national. In the first place because they bring about separation in social life. They are anti-national also because they generate jealousy and antipathy between caste and caste. But we must overcome all these difficulties if we wish to become a nation in reality. For fraternity can be a fact only when there is a nation. Without fraternity equality and liberty will be no deeper than coats of paint.”

He pointed out the complete absence of two things in Indian society. “One of these is equality. On the social plane, we have in India a society based on the principle of graded inequality which means elevation for some and degradation for others. On the economic plane, we have a society in which there are some who have immense wealth as against many who live in abject poverty. …. In politics, we will have equality and in social and economic life we will have inequality. In politics we will be recognizing the principle of one man one vote and one vote one value. In our social and economic life, we shall, by reason of our social and economic structure, continue to deny the principle of one man one value.”

He warned that if we continued to deny equality in our social and economic life for long, political democracy would be in peril. If this contradiction was not removed at the earliest possible moment, “those who suffer from inequality will blow up the structure of political democracy.”

Pointing out that power in our country had for too long been the monopoly of a few and the many are “not only beasts of burden, but also beasts of prey”, he exhorted: “these down-trodden classes are tired of being governed. They are impatient to govern themselves. This urge for self-realization in the down-trodden classes must not be allowed to devolve into a class struggle or class war. It would lead to a division ……... That would indeed be a day of disaster.”

He suggested that “the sooner room is made for the realization of their aspiration, the better for the few, the better for the country, the better for the maintenance of its independence and the better for the continuance of its democratic structure. This can only be done by the establishment of equality and fraternity in all spheres of life.”

In the words of P.B. Gajendragadkar, former Chief Justice of India, “he was a man of outstanding intelligence, who was not appreciated fully in his life time.” Contemporary writers viewed him mostly as a leader of the untouchables. Louis Fischer, American J

journalist, referred to him as “the gifted and ambitious representative” of the Dalits.

In the words of Durga Das, Chief Editor of Hindustan Times, he was “a powerful spokesman of the depressed classes who walked the stage as a latter day Moses striving to free his people from bondage.” M. Chalapathi Rau, Editor of National Herald, was impressed by Dr. Ambedkar’s “passionate attachment to social justice, his alert mind, a sharp tongue and Johnsonian look and manner”.

In the words of M.C. Chagla, former Chief Justice of Bombay High Court, Dr. Ambedkar “was an extremely able man, deeply read in politics and political science and knew the principles of Constitution-making and also of good government.”

Dr. Ambedkar did not receive his due during his life time. His portrait came to be unveiled in Parliament over three decades after his death in 1956 and ‘Bharat Ratna’, the country’s highest honour, was posthumously awarded in the year of his birth centenary.

The passage of time, far from dimming his memory, has made him more relevant. His stature has increased immensely after his death. Dr. Ambedkar’s life has a lasting meaning and a message to successive generations of our youth, in particular to the members of the weaker sections, that given the opportunities and encouragement, one can realise the fullest potential of his personality and rise to become a statesman.

The writer is a Senior Advocate, Supreme Court

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North Korea’s Kim is back
by John M. Glionna and Ju-Min Park

There was pomp and circumstance, huge adoring crowds — not to mention lots of choreographed propaganda.

A frail-looking Kim Jong Il, North Korea’s paternal “dear leader,” appeared last week before a newly elected Supreme People’s Assembly that reappointed him as the nation reigning military chief.

The 67-year-old leader, who reportedly suffered a stroke last year, bringing rumors of a possible succession, has turned North Korea “into an invincible political and ideological, military and scientific and technological power,” trumpeted the government-controlled Korean Central News Agency.

A photograph released by North Korea shows thousands of smiling celebrants in Pyongyang, North Korea’s Kim Il-sung Square. Many are dressed in traditional Korean garb. All are clapping in unison under a banner that reads “Hurray for Great Victory of Songun (Military First) Politics.”

Kim’s reappointment comes amid tension on the Korean peninsula as the international community seeks unison in responding to North Korea’s satellite launch that ignored international pleas for restraint.

The U.S., Japan and South Korea have turned to the United Nations Security Council to seek a rebuke of the launch, while members China and Russia have urged caution.

U.S. intelligence reports have characterised the test of an experimental communications satellite as a failure, saying the craft failed to reach orbit and splashed into the Pacific.

The regime’s public relations machine has told the North Korean public that the launch of the Kwangmyongsong No. 2 satellite was a total success.

North Korea’s state-run television rebroadcast footage of rocket launch, interspersed with undated photos of the Kim with his signature bouffant hairdo meeting with citizens and observing bears at a zoo.

Kim was also reported to have watched the satellite launch.

But one former defector called the public events staged.

“People do not join voluntarily. If the party calls them to the rally, they are obligated to attend,” Hyun In-ae, 53, a former professor who escaped in 2004, said of the celebrations.

“This is not an election in democratic society. People are told to stand up and applaud when a certain line is being read.”

The Supreme People’s Assembly, elected last month, had been expected to rubber-stamp Kim’s grip on power, including control of the isolationist regime’s million-man military.

Under Kim’s leadership as “general secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea and supreme commander of the revolutionary armed forces,” according to Thursday’s release by the state-run press, “the Party, the army and the people (stand) as firm as a rock.”

But questions remain about a succession of power since Kim reportedly suffered a stroke last August. Many analysts believe Kim is leaning toward handing the reins to his youngest son, Kim Jong-un.

“Many elites in Pyongyang believe that a successful rocket launch was a prelude to a change of power,” said Young Howard, who runs a Seoul radio station that broadcasts into North Korea. “They think that Kim will say the launch was guided by his son and that he deserves to step up to power.”

This marks Kim’s third term as North Korean leader since he emerged to replace his father, Kim Il-sung, who died in 1994.

Analysts say Kim will continue to insist that his satellite is orbiting the earth, beaming back patriotic music to the faithful.

“North Korea gives a sense of stability to its people when saying that things like the rocket protect people from threats by the United States,” said Lee Woo-young, a professor at University of North Korean studies in Seoul. “The rocket launch was a political ad, which I think had some effects domestically and internationally.”

— By arrangement with LA Times-Washington Post

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Delhi Durbar
PM: a stickler for propriety

A stickler for propriety, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh flatly refused to organise his interaction with the Capital’s women press corps last week at his official 7, Race Course Road, residence in view of the elections.

With the Opposition indulging in personal attacks on him, Singh obviously did not want to hand them over an issue. He bluntly told Congress functionaries that the press interaction could be organised anywhere but not at his residence.

Finally, a five-star hotel was chosen as the venue for the media interaction at which Singh scrupulously avoided having any PMO official around him to assist him in the question-answer session. In fact, it was the Congress party’s main spokesperson Janardhan Dwivedi who assisted the PM.

Soon after the interaction with women journalists, the PM released the Congress manifesto in Urdu for which Urdu journalists had been invited by the party office.

This week the PM is convening a meeting of the Editors Guild of India and the venue again may be a hotel and not his residence.

Tytler’s detractors

Apart from the media and the Opposition (BJP and Akali Dal), Jagdish Tytler has blamed his detractors in the Congress party for whipping up the controversy against him through the shoe incident to tarnish his image and hinder his political career. Tytler may not have mentioned his detractors publicly. But it is well known that since arriving on Delhi’s political scene, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and the Tytler-Sajjan duo have not been able to see eye to eye.

Both Delhi stalwarts, who have remained electorally invincible in Delhi, consider Sheila an outsider, transplanted from Unnao, which brought her in Parliament and then in the PMO as Minister of State under Rajiv Gandhi.

Anyway now with both out of the way, the only one who can create trouble for Sheila is Ajay Maken. And if Maken also loses the electoral battle from New Delhi, there is no stopping Sandeep Dikshit inheriting his mother Sheila’s mantle in Delhi.

Women power

Apart from Sonia Gandhi, two women who are likely to play a dominant role in the formation of the next government in an uncertain post-poll scenario are Mayawati and Jayalalithaa. And both are getting ready for a long haul in Delhi, should the polls throw up a hung Parliament.

Final touches are being given to the ‘BSP House’, the office-cum-residence of Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati on Sardar Patel Marg. The grapevine has it that the accommodation will be ready by the time the results of the Lok Sabha elections are out.

AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa, who is expecting a reasonably rich harvest in the elections in Tamil Nadu, also is said to be planning to move to Delhi as soon as the results are out and become a major player in the formation of the new government with her flock of MPs.

Contributed by Anita Katyal, Faraz Ahmad and Ashok Tuteja

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Corrections and clarifications

l The front page report on April 11 (Another shoegate in Kurukshetra) states, “police could not question him as he was not in an inebriated state”. It should read, “as he was in an inebriated state”.

l The report on ‘Chandigarh Plus’ page about sales tax refunds was meant to say that the amount in excess recovered by the authorities, and not illegally recovered, would be refunded in 48 hours.

l On the Haryana page , in a report about a 65-year-old woman who was beaten to death, it should read, “The accused trespassed…” and also she lost consciousness.

l A headline on the World page of the edition dated April 12, “American Indian to head India affairs” was misleading in so far as it gave the impression that it had something to do with India. The report actually related to the US Bureau of Indian Affairs, which deals with original American Indians as opposed to NRIs.

Despite our earnest endeavour to keep The Tribune error-free, some errors do creep in at times. We are always eager to correct them.

We request our readers to write or e-mail to us whenever they find any error. We will carry corrections and clarifications, wherever necessary, every Tuesday & Friday.

Readers in such cases can write to Mr Uttam Sengupta, Associate Editor, The Tribune, Chandigarh, with the word “Corrections” on the envelope. His e-mail ID is uttamsengupta@tribunemail.com.

H.K. Dua,
Editor-in-Chief

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