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Myanmar deserves democracy

The editorial “Myanmar charade: Suu Kyi, democracy can’t be jailed forever” (Oct 5) was thought-provoking. Gen Ne Win, who had ruled Burma (now Myanmar) for 26 years, was thrown out in an uprising in 1988. In the first free elections in 1990, the National League for Democracy (NLF) won by a thumping majority, but the army did not hand over power to its Nobel Laureate leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. She was kept under house arrest from 1989 to 1995 and for various long and short terms thereafter.

The UN chief’s categorical statement that the elections to be held on November 7 in Myanmar will not be credible without Suu Kyi and her party’s participation is meaningful. In 1987, the UN gave the least developed country status to Myanmar, which was once the richest country in South-East Asia, called the “rice bowl of the Far East”.

The prolonged rule of the military junta there is solely responsible for pushing the nation backwards. The Burmese have lived under the shadow of dictatorship for long and have not tasted the fruits of democracy even for a day since January 4, 1948, when their nation became independent.

Time is ripe for the United Nations to shed its “dead horse” image and restore democracy in Myanmar.


Why women take to crime 

Articles “Female criminality and male perception” and “Crime and women” (Oct 7) brought to the fore the factors which drive women to crime.

It is unfair to assume that only males are expected to be involved in crime, and women are austere, compliant and virtuous wives, daughters and mothers. It has been rightly pointed out that a criminal is a criminal, and crime should not be treated as a monopoly of males. But at the same time if we look at the statistics, it is an undisputed fact that more men are involved in crime than women. There are reasons for this.

Earlier, women had lesser opportunities to be involved in crime, as there were restrictions on their movement and they were preoccupied with child-bearing and rearing, home management, etc. With the opening of the economy, now more and more women are stepping out of their homes and entering the job market, which indeed is a healthy trend. But at the same time, this gives women more opportunities to get involved in crime.

Research alone can pinpoint what drives women to crime as different from men. Research must consider both specific and common factors that force women to crime in order to address this issue effectively.



Courting controversy

I fully endorse the views expressed in the editorial, “Rahul-speak: RSS shown the SIMI mirror” (Oct 8). Calling the RSS communal or fanatical might have passed muster but equating it with SIMI might very well prove to be a case of going overboard. There is no denying the fact that the RSS has contributed to nation building.

In their zeal to win over the minorities, the Congress might turn the man on the street towards the RSS that is being targeted unfairly and thus benefit the BJP and its allies in the next general elections. If Rahul Gandhi has to take over the reins of the nation in near future, he must tread cautiously and avoid unsavoury controversies.



I agree with the views expressed in the editorial. Indeed, Mr Rahul Gandhi’s statement can be counter-productive. It may generate sympathy rather than hatred of the common man for the RSS. Even those who dub the RSS as communal are not prepared to accept it being equated with a banned organisation like SIMI.

It would have been better if the young general secretary of the Congress who is being seen as the future prime minister of the country, should have attacked the idea of Hindu nationalism of the RSS.


Save Shimla

I fully endorse the views expressed in the editorial “Shimla must be saved: May be judicial activism can help” (Oct 12) calling upon the people to save Shimla from its politicians, especially those in power. It is a sad commentary on the state of affairs of our republic that those who are supposed to protect the environment are behind environmental degradation.

It is of utmost importance to preserve the historical and ecological balance of the city by devising ways and means to ensure sustainable development. Reckless construction of the concrete jungle has to be stopped immediately and buildings have to be in sync with the hill landscape.

In addition, the government has to take effective measures to solve the water problem and also the problem of disposal of garbage. Otherwise, these beautiful pine tree laden hills will become litter dumps and posterity will not forgive us for lapses we are committing to accumulate undue riches.

The Centre must provide adequate funds. The NGOs in the region have to play an effective role to force the authorities to behave and ensure that the degradation is halted forthwith.

S C CHABBA, Patiala

Respect parents

The news report, “Octogenarian locked at home for 5 years” (Sept 21) by Umesh Dewan and Gagan K Teja was an eye-opener. The case has proved an old proverb “Children are certain cares but uncertain comforts.” Parents work hard and try their best to make the lives of their children comfortable. However, no one knows whether parents will get due respect from their children in future.

In the modern world most individuals have become materialistic. They give more importance to money though it is not everything and show little or no care towards their parents or elders.


Ayodhya verdict

The judgement delivered by the judges of the Allahabad High Court is fair and appreciable. All the parties to the dispute and the general public must honour this judgement. Judges deserve appreciation for delivering such an important judgement. In the national interest, no one should think of filing an appeal in the Supreme Court.

S P BADAL,Bathinda



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