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Rational look at Ramdev’s eviction

The entire episode of fast of Baba Ramdev at Ramlila Maidan in Delhi and his eviction through the use of force by the government at midnight exposes both parties in the public eye (editorial, “Pendulum swings”, June 6).Whereas the fast by Baba was actuated by his ego to show himself as the main player in the civil society’s movement against corruption, the action of the government in giving him a VVIP status while holding talks with him at the airport seemed to accord him extra priority over the other group representing the civil society in a joint panel on the Lok Pal Bill. But the final turn of events only proved the old adage, “results match the intentions”, true.

The end to this whole drama brings disgrace to both the parties. Whereas Baba has no explanation for not being transparent with his followers about his having penned down an agreement with the government on June 3, the government on its part fails to explain the use of force on peaceful sleeping participants in the satyagraha. But the biggest casualty in this whole episode has been the issue of corruption which had occupied centrestage in the recent past and has now been made a subject of ridicule. The Baba by including other demands pertaining to agriculture, education and land acquisition, etc sought to trivialise and politicise the issue of corruption more so by raising demands which seemed impractical.

Another point of concern is the efforts by some interested parties to equate this episode with the satyagrahas undertaken by Mahatama Gandhi and the call of total revolution by Jaiparkash Narayan. Also some parties fishing in troubled waters have tried to draw a parallel between the use of force at Ramlila Grounds with the massacre of Jalianwala Bagh in Amritsar in 1919.

To all these political outfits in search of votes, I make a request to remain objective and not to demean the efforts of stalwarts of freedom struggle and not to undermine the sacrifices of those who fell to British brutality in Jallianwala Bagh. We shall be doing a dis-service to the cause of corruption if the so-called struggles in recent past are not objectively evaluated.

S C CHABBA, Panchkula


The editorial has aptly brought out the government’s knee-jerk reaction. The government has shown its ineptitude in dealing with the satyagraha with which we won our freedom. On the one hand, the government rushed in to meet Baba Ramdev and on the other hand it has shown inflexible attitude. Heavens would not have fallen if it would have continued for a few days more.

At least, this satyagraha has started the process of sorting out corruption and black money. We can be assured by the actions of the government that it is concerned about common citizen’s voice on issues. It is not because it wants to do it willingly but the world has undergone a sea change. With the arrival of the Internet and TV, now people-centric agitations are not uncommon. We must thank the people of Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen who actually followed Mahatma Gandhi’s method of satyagraha and showed that it still works. But in India, the police action the government has undertaken was not right. Politics sometimes demands restraint and use of force against its own citizens is not the way to deal with agitations in a democracy.



It would have been better if Baba Ramdev had refrained from indulging in politics. Actually he has been motivated by his overwhelming desire to become a hero overnight. The government made an assurance to accede to his demands to some extent, and then went on to take police action. The UPA Government should have observed restraint for now its image is likely to take a beating.


Lokpal Bill’s ambit

Unnecessary controversy is being raised over the Lokpal Bill. It is being thought that with the passing of the Jan Lokpal Bill, corruption will be wiped off in one go. We should go step by step. Initially we should not include the Prime Minister and the higher judiciary. If the Bill proves to be successful the PM and the judiciary can also be brought into its ambit.

The PM of such a large country should be fearless. He has to take many bold and sensitive decisions. If there is a watchdog over him he will avoid bold decisions and it will cost the country much more than the corruption we are talking about.


Save hockey

I share the concern of Pargat Singh (The Tribune, June 2) for the continuous decline of Indian hockey for the past three decades. In fact, hockey’s downfall began soon after 1975 when players started copying the Western style of the game. In the recent past, the Indian team played its best hockey in the 1973 World Cup in Amsterdam (Holland). It was sheer bad luck that the team lost to Holland in the finals during the penalty shootout. But the dribbling of Surjit and Ashok, interception of Ajit Pal Singh and the reverse flick of Harcharan were simply mesmerising. Thereafter I have seen only Pargat Singh dribbling out his way from the 30-yard circle to the goalpost of the opponent team.

Now Pargat Singh is praying before the Sports Ministry and the IHF to save Indian hockey from complete ruin. But that will not help much till the coaching of the team is restarted on the pattern of old Indian hockey.

Now the art of dribbling and interception is totally missing in the team. The moment an Indian player faces his opponents, he resorts to back-passing and fails to dodge his opponents. This new art of back-passing is the main cause for the defeat of the Indian team in international tournaments. I suggest that Pargat Singh should meet Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to help him rebuild a strong hockey team for Punjab.

Ram Niwas Malik, Engineer-in-Chief (retd), Gurgaon



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