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Honouring martyrs, French style

I read the article Brave sons of India by K.J.S. Chatrath (Spectrum, June 6). The writer has opened the eyes of the readers by mentioning that the France Government had raised a memorial at Naeave Chapelle in France in honour of over 4,700 Indian soldiers who laid down their lives in defending the French people during World War I.

This really speaks the honour which a nation holds not only for their own war heroes but also for those belonging to other countries. This article must help our leaders understand that the army men, especially the martyrs, must be given due respect and honour.

The British government raised a suitable memorial for the war heroes of World War I at India Gate, New Delhi. The names with their service numbers of the fallen heroes have been engraved on the red stones. Unfortunately, our leaders have not raised any such memorial to perpetuate the bravery of our soldiers who laid down their lives during World War II, the Indo-China War in 1962 and the Indo-Pak wars in 1965 and 1971. Our leaders treat soldiers as second-class citizens. This tendency must stop and the soldiers must be given their due.


Bold verdict

I read None like Manmohan(Khushwant Singh, Saturday Extra, June 5). Yes, indeed none like him. There is no dearth of dirty “politicians” “cleverer” and “with more political clout”.

However, where shall we find one like Shakespeare’s Brutus:

... (whose) life was gentle, and the elements

so mixed in him that Nature might stand up

and say to the whole world: “This was a Man!”

Generations to come will scarce believe that such a one as Manmohan ever graced Parliament as Prime Minister. Three cheers to Khushwant Singh for his bold but sagacious verdict — “An inexhaustible mine of perfect wisdom!”



Readers will endorse Khushwant Singh’s sagacious analysis. Sonia Gandhi as the Congress President, after making it to numero uno position in the 2004 elections, catapulted her stature at home and abroad by declining to lead the government and instead reposing faith in Dr Manmohan Singh.

He has not disappointed his party as well as India and its people during the past six years of his stewardship.

Sonia should never let her political wisdom be overshadowed to impose Rahul Gandhi to lead the government.


Honour killings: New legislation a must

Not a day passes without reports on honour killings in Haryana, Delhi, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. The so-called custodians of tradition and family honour are trampling upon the fundamental rights of the young couples to live with honour and marry on their own. They are cocking a snook at the law of the land.

The conservative, obscurantist and caste-conscious rural chieftains are giving them a long rope with which they can hang themselves but not before having taken away the precious lives of those youngmen and women who choose their own life partners. These are cold murders and not noble attempts to preserve our culture and tradition. Recent reports and surveys have revealed that the number of honour killings has alarmingly gone up. The rural and semi-urban areas of this region are experiencing a very painful and complex social transition which has widened the gap between the elders and the young generation. In the name of defending culture, customs and old tradtions, some individuals take the law into their hands and murder their own children.

The Centre and the states shouldn’t remain mute witnesses to such heinous crimes. The civil society should wake up now and address this serious and complex social problem.

The Centre must enact a suitable law to check honor killings. All sections should come together on a single platform to educate and persuade the masses about the need for creating a democratic and liberal social ambience.

Because of rapid urbanisation and industrialisation, the old social structure in India has developed visible cracks now and they have prepared the grounds for a direct clash between the old and new generations. It is a sensitive and emotive task and it has to be tackled very responsibly in and around Haryana.




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