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Armed Forces Act doesn’t need change

Lt-Gen. Harwant Singh’s article “AFSPA doesn’t need change” (April 26) is an eye-opener and throws light on how terrorists and human rights activists use false propaganda to demoralise our security forces. The ironical and unfortunate aspect of all this is that the media especially electronic, falls prey to this trap by sensationalising and blowing small issues out of proportion.  

It is a fact that during an insurgency anti-social and anti-national elements and their votaries try to discredit the security forces by portraying them as oppressive and anti-people. Terrorists deliberately choose populated areas to target security forces that makes counter-insurgency operations a messy affair. In such situations innocent civilians are caught in the crossfire. Sometimes this could be due to an error of judgement, but many times insurgents themselves inflict injuries to civilians knowing well that the blame for it will surely be pinned on security forces.

We must understand that India is surrounded by hostile neighbours who are out to disintegrate our country by aiding and abetting cross-border terrorism in J&K and North-East. Now a new dimension has been added by Maoists. Our security forces are working under tremendous pressure as is evident from the Dantewada incident. The need of the hour is that they must be supported and shielded from false propaganda.

Human rights activists and their political masters are not going to fight for us on borders. They can only talk and demoralise the security forces by sitting in the comfort of air-conditioned rooms.

  ARVIND DHUMAL, Jalandhar

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor, neatly hand-written or typed in double space, should not exceed the 150-word limit. These can be sent by post to the Letters Editor, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160030. Letters can also be sent by e-mail to: Letters@tribuneindia.com

— Editor-in-Chief

Beyond tokenism

The news report, “Class IX English topper can’t read a sentence” (April 26) typifies the lackadaisical approach of the Haryana government to secondary school education which is plagued by lofty sloganeering and vulgar self-aggrandisement.

Effective teaching is a complex process which besides pedagogical acumen requires adequate expertise in a teaching subject on the part of a teacher. The teacher first needs to internalise the theme of instructions. Only then the same can be imbibed by the pupils through an interactive and participatory modus operandi.

Major disciplines of higher education are essentially based on English language in terms of availability of study material, medium of instruction and examinations etc. Generally, it is seen that without sufficient familiarity with English language, it is impossible for a student to come out with flying colours in their chosen fields.

The situation warrants the government’s sincere attention to the woeful state of affairs and calls for a separate cadre for English teachers at the secondary level of education. It should shun tokenism.

NEETI BANSAL GOYAL, Samalkha (Panipat)

Animals’ feelings

The middle “Canine love” (April 22) by Surinder Gosain was interesting. Love is a feeling. Not only humans but animals too can feel it. There is no need of any language to express love. One can convey love with gestures too.

An animal cannot speak but can express its feelings through its actions. Animals can also judge the difference between love and betrayal. A man’s behaviour may be insincere but not an animal’s. How can we claim that the man is the best social animal on this earth?


Honour in killings?

Sajla Chawla’s article “What honour in killing?” (April 16) is appreciable. Even in the 21st century our society is male-dominated. Heinous crimes like “honour killings” cannot be condoned and as a society we must recognise the discrimination against women.

The media plays a vital role in highlighting such cases where women suffer silently and are discriminated in the family or outside the family.


Remove social injustice 

However much we talk about the virtues of social equality and justice, the hydra-headed monster of casteism is ruling the roost and taken its toll on the Dalits at least in the rural India (editorial, “Death in Hisar”, April 23). The torching of houses of Dalits resulting in the killing of a handicapped girl and her father in a Haryana village is a glaring example of this fact. This incident is a blot on the face of the biggest democracy in the world and a slap on the face of its guardians.  

There are enough laws to punish the culprits responsible for the atrocities on the weaker sections of society but these are rarely enforced because of lack of political will on the part of our leaders. They develop cold feet when it comes to the crunch. Apparently they do not stand up for the oppressed and marginalised people for the fear of losing the support of the high and mighty during the elections.

That some Dalits occupy high posts in the government and private sector does not detract from the fact that a majority of them continue to be subjected to exploitation and deprivation.

The powers that be must come to the rescue of the people exploited and neglected for centuries before it is too late. Their dissatisfaction can have wider implications for society and the government.




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