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Rajoana mercy row a political gimmick

Akal Takht calling for a bandh in Punjab against the hanging of Balwant Singh Rajoana and the state government seeking a stay on the court’s decision is very sad. It will put a question mark on the decisions pronounced by judicial courts.

The stand of the Punjab government to get the court decision stayed is political in nature. Why did the state government come to Rajoana’s rescue when a few days were left for execution of the death sentence? Why did they not raise the issue in July 31, 2007, when the court pronounced the death sentence to Rajoana?

At that time they forced the Indian government to take immediate action against Rajoana and now they want mercy for him on grounds of communal harmony. They are seeking clemency only for their political interest not for the common man’s interest.

RAM MISHRA, Amritsar


No arrests have been made in the cases relating to the 1984 riots, Gujarat riots and Rajiv Gandhi assassins. Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru’s death sentence is hanging fire and Pakistani terrorist Kasab is enjoying Indian hospitality, but a co-accused in the Beant Singh assassination is being sent to the gallows. Why are we following the Indian Penal Code which was framed by the British to use it against Indians? Sardar Bhagat Singh was hanged on the order of the court established under the laws framed in the year 1834. The time has come that we must change the draconian laws and do away with death sentence.

Raksh Pal Abrol, via e-mail


The death penalty should be strictly abolished in India in law and practice. India should join 140 compassionate nations which have abolished death penalty. Punishment should be given to a criminal but taking somebody’s life is against the ethos of a civilised and cultured society.


Swadeshi only

Defence deals all over the world have an inherent mechanism which leaves scope for corruption. Our government must use the opportunity, when the Army chief has raised the issue, to further streamline the defence procurement policy and must stress on indigenous production. The motive must be to meet our defence needs and not what the arms dealers offer in their glossy brochures. If unavoidable, import should be restricted to the bare minimum. The indigenous systems, which became a casualty of the import lobby, must get rehabilitated. A fast-track re-engineering directorate under DRDO must be set up to indigenise our defence system. The department should have representation at appropriate level from the user services, relevant public and private industries, the academic institutions if required and from amongst the talent pool available in organisations like Institute of Defence Scientists & Technologists.

Air Cmde RAGHUBIR SINGH (retd), Pune


Keeping aside whether the General is justified in his disclosure, what is alarming is the unpreparedness of our armed forces in terms of sophisticated equipment. Definitely, the Army chief will not be lying to the nation.  One would now surmise that the frequent crashing of MIGs was due to obsolete equipment. Our politicians have reached the nadir of corruption and the bug seems to be entering the defence forces.  Due to this, suppliers of defence material are over-pricing and dumping the country with sub-standard material. Why are most defence contracts bagged by Italians?



I think it is of little significance as to what our Defence Minister or the Army chief are saying in public. What is more important for the people of the country to know is the reason behind the growing appeal of "commercial self- interest " among senior retired and serving Generals, some of whom have reportedly emerged as successful businessmen.


No cohesion

The large-scale acquittal of criminals points at serious flaws in the country’s criminal justice system. The enforcement of laws involves three agencies - the police, the prosecution and the courts. Instead of acting in unison, these agencies seem to work at cross purposes.

The police blame prosecutors for the dismal show alleging that the latter do not pursue cases with the requisite vigour. The prosecutors opine that police investigations, by and large, are slipshod and thus the cases fail to stand judicial scrutiny

TARA CHAND, Ambota (Una)

The old should speak up

The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act is a commendable step but is yet to be implemented in spirit. Many senior citizens are not even aware of the Act framed to provide effective provisions for their maintenance and welfare. Abuse of the elderly, who need our time, space and attention, is on the rise.

Nuclear families and increasing incompatibility between the young and the old have adversely affected the welfare of the elderly. So it is important to make the elderly people aware of the Act so that they can make use of it if necessary. Also, they must not remain silent; instead, they should speak up and seek help.

Any person who does not care for his or her parents or grandparents and abandons them must be punished. Other than the various loopholes, the big issue is whether parents would take their children to the courts, given the social pressure and moral values?




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