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Iran should respect India’s sensitivities

The editorial ”India, Iran need each other—But friendship is not one-way traffic “(November 22) has mentioned and rightly so that Iran should respect India’s sensitivities on the Kashmir issue. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s utterances over Kashmir are   misplaced, far fetched and uncalled for, and amount to interference in our internal matters. The situation in Jammu and Kashmir vis-à-vis that in Gaza in the Palestinian Authority Area, Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan is as different as chalk and cheese. They have nothing in common from any perspective and in any respect.

 More than Iran, India has an excellent track record of speaking for peace and against injustice in any part of the world, be it Gaza or Iraq, and fought against interference by any country in the internal matters of others.

 Iran must know the circumstances under which Jammu and Kashmir had acceded to India. What is more is that like people in other parts of the country, voters in this state have been participating in Assembly and parliamentary elections of their own accord. They have equal rights. There is no question of discrimination against them on the ground of caste, creed and religion as India is a democratic country.

Let us go further. The whole world knows that the violation of human rights in Iran is a common occurrence. Yet India abstained from voting on the UN resolution censoring   Iran for its poor human rights record.

Not only that. India has  also  criticized the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for its so –called biased reporting on Iran’s  nuclear facilities. Instead of expressing gratitude to India for showing understanding to its sensitivities at international forums, Iran has the impudence to rub us on the wrong side.

It appears that Iran’s outbursts stem more from India’s burgeoning relations with the US than the from former’s concern for violence in Kashmir. In international diplomacy, every sovereign country tries to develop its relations with one country or another for mutual benefits, of course, not at the cost of its ties with other countries. So does Iran.  Iran should, therefore, shun the policy of pin-pricking for the sake of promoting bilateral relations with India based on mutual interests and the understanding of each other’s concerns.   


Bring back scam loot

There is need for not only thoroughly probing the 2G spectrum scam but also bringing back the loot that will suffice to finance India’s food security programme for full one year and the Education For All programme for three years.

The 2G spectrum scam is only one of the several scams that have come to light recently. If all the money stacked abroad in foreign banks by rich and powerful Indians is brought back, there will be enough funds to build first class infrastructure complete with excellent roads, bridges and transport facilities and maintain several pro-poor programmes many times over.

Also the projected growth rate of 9 per cent conveys a false impression of rising prosperity because the gains are neutralised first by inflation  of 14 per cent, and then by the unequal distribution of growth gains. Corrective measures need to be taken right now.


Hockey lovers

I was watching the TV and saw "Breaking News" that the coach of Indian hockey team Harinder Singh has resigned. I myself have been playing hockey. I personally feel that Harinder Singh has done the right thing because the Indian hockey team has not delivered as per the expectations of the coach as well as the lovers of hockey.

I wish and hope that the Indian hockey team will prove its worth and nurse the wounds of the hockey lovers.

Sarinder Singh, Ropar

Disappearing tigers

With reference to your editorial “On verge of extinction” (November 23), I would say that the decline in tiger population is a cause for concern. As the future of the tiger remains uncertain, it will take just a decade for the tigers to vanish from the wild. Tigers are important to maintain the overall health of the ecosystem.

At the same time, it is painful to learn that when recently zoo-keepers cremated Aniruddha, a 19-year-old tiger, after he was gunned down by security forces even as wildlife rescue teams and forest officials made desperate attempts to tranquilise the big cat in Guwahati. Two persons were mauled to death and a police man was seriously injured by the tiger.

 Poachers are not the only factor posing a serious threat to wildlife. As per the experts’ report, the number of animal deaths in road accidents is higher than deaths by poaching. There is need for issuing directions for the implementation of laws relating to controlling vehicular traffic vis-à-vis wildlife. Tigers are illegally shot and poisoned for mainly two reasons: their threat to people and most commonly for monetary gains. We have to look towards saving the trees and forests for keeping the tiger population intact.

Educating local people about the need for and the benefits of conservation and making them part of the management process are important steps to saving tigers and their habitat. Tigers can also be saved through the creation of property rights in the tigers for keeping them alive.

Without voice, animals are the most vulnerable living beings on earth. They deserve our strongest support.




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