L E T T E R S    T O    T H E    E D I T O R

Not much headway in India-China ties

B R Deepak’s article “‘India, China must build mutual trust’’ (Dec 17) was highly enlightening in context of the Chinese Premier’s visit to New Delhi. The media had raised the expectations to such a level that the net outcome of the deliberations between the two countries’ top executives has hardly impressed people. The agreements on trade and commerce are nowhere in the minds of the common people. They were looking for answers to more pricking issues such as the protracted border tangle, the stapled visa practice for J&K residents, the permanent UN Security Council seat for India and, above all, clear support for India’s stand on terrorism emanating from Pakistan.

But all these issues either have found no place in China’s agenda or have received ambiguous reactions/statements. The present generation of Indians is of the opinion that two great historical events have probably made a deep impact on the India-China and India-Pakistan relations. These are providing permanent asylum to the Dalai Lama and the creation of Bangladesh in 1971. Both these events were unavoidable and India was forced to act in the given circumstances created by China and Pakistan respectively.

India must remain firm and act decisively as per the norms and practices of diplomacy. Despite our persistent objection to the stapled visa for J&K residents, if China still continues with the offending practice brazenly, India too on its part should reciprocate by doing the same for Tibet’s residents. Obstinacy and blackmailing need to be returned in equal measure, trade agreements notwithstanding.

L R SHARMA, Sundernagar

J &K’s accession

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s statement appears to have been made at a time when he was being labelled as incompetent and complacent (article “‘Pointless row over J&K’s accession: Time to focus on regional aspirations” by Balraj Puri, Dec 16). Hurriyat managed to exploit the situation and spread violent unrest. This step may be to buy peace with secessionists. The fact is that J & K enjoys much more freedom than normally available to others. Huge amounts of funds are placed at the disposal of the state every year. Some administrators divert funds to unspecified and unauthorised purposes.

Major and small industrial units are not functioning well and development projects are delayed without reason. The state has enormous potential to offer employment opportunities to its youth if management of various resources is harnessed in right earnest. For this, the Chief Minister and all the politicians have to work hard and put in honest efforts to make the state prosperous.

The Centre’s positive support must be channelised. Then secessionists will have no reason to agitate and the question of accession, merger, etc, will become meaningless. Hopefully, Jammu and Kashmir will always remain one of the most important states of the Indian Union.

S C VAID, Greater Noida

Recover losses

Leave aside scams like those related to the Adarsh Society flats and the Commonwealth Games, the average loss to every Indian citizen from the 2G scam works out to be Rs 1,600. Inquiries may further cost another Rs 100 to each one of us.

The government should arrange to recover the loss from the culprits, subject to refund, if any of them comes out clean. We see that total indirect taxes collection for the period April-November this year is almost the same. Thus the people misusing their power illegally have nullified the tax collection from the public.

P N GUPTA, Sangrur

Value of honesty

I read Wg-Cdr C.L. Sehgal’s letter  (Dec 16) taking exception to the termination of the training of a jawan at IMA Dehradun for commissioning because of a theft committed by him (news report, “From jawan to Gentleman Cadet and back”, Dec 13). Undoubtedly, there have been many in the Armed Forces who having proved their worth, rose from the ranks and deservedly came to occupy high positions in the military hierarchy. Overall, they were as competent and dedicated as others. In fact, some among them may have even done better while on active service than those who were direct entry commissioned officers.

The question is not of one pertaining to the capability, per se, of officers vis-a-vis our jawans who make the finest troops and are as good as any in the world in fighting skills, gallantry and spirit of sacrifice. Here we have to address a more basic concern: Can a proclaimed thief, irrespective of his status, be permitted to occupy a position of authority in an organisation, more so in the Indian Armed Forces that pride themselves on unflinching adherence to honesty, discipline, justice and patriotism? The answer of course is a big resounding no.

Wing Commander SC KAPOOR (retd), Noida

Parliament deadlock

The winter session of Parliament ended 22 days after it opened without transacting any business deadlocked by the JPC demand. Maintaining a calculated silence all these three weeks, the Prime Minister expressed his concern over the logjam.

The chairperson of the UPA Sonia Gandhi lashed out at the opposition party after conclusion of the session. I feel that her anger over the Opposition is misplaced.

R BALAJI, Chennai

Bus fare hike

It is a matter of concern that the elected governments in our country take decision without considering the consequences. The bus fares in Punjab are increased in the absence of any rise in diesel prices.

How can middle class people, travelling daily by bus to reach their workplace, afford this rise? The government is busy drafting policies and decisions in the favour of bureaucrats, private players and lobbyists.




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