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

Matter needs international intervention

It is indeed a matter of shame that our government failed to highlight the blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions by Pakistan during the Kargil operation at international fora.

The bodies of Capt Saurabh Kalia and five of our soldiers were returned to our forces in Kargil by the Pakistan army in a mutilated state. The bodies showed clear signs of physical torture with cigarette butt marks over the bodies, eyes gouged out, ears chopped off and teeth and bones broken. The details have been recorded in the autopsy report conducted on the bodies in India.

Our Army did put up the entire case to the government which, in its wisdom, did not consider this case worth taking up at the UN or any international forum. The father of late Capt Saurabh Kalia, who has single-handedly been fighting the battle of getting justice for the last over 13 years, had to finally move a petition in the Supreme Court to direct the government to seek an apology from Pakistan. It has been a source of major demotivation for officers and soldiers of the Indian armed forces.

PoWs of the 1971 war too have either been rotting in Pakistan prisons or have died. The drama enacted by former President Pervez Musharraf and the Pakistan government inviting the relatives of Indian PoWs to come and search for them in the prisons was another big farce.

Our government accepted the Pakistan government’s declaration that there are no Indian PoWs in their prisons. One of the PoWs, Flt Lt Vijay Tambe, an Air Force fighter pilot, was my NDA coursemate and a friend. His presence in a Pakistani prison was confirmed by more than two-three persons who had reportedly met him there.

Brig JOGINDAR SINGH (retd), via e-mail


Capt Saurabh Kalia’s father has been fighting a lonely battle to urge our government to take up the matter at the appropriate forum to bring the perpetrators of heinous war crimes to book.

While External Affairs Minister Salman Khursheed has assured that “whatever is possible will be done”, the chances of this matter being taken up at the international fora appear bleak because of our existing foreign policy vis-a-vis Commonwealth nations, especially Pakistan.

Nonetheless, as the editorial aptly suggests, there is a crying need now for an international indictment of Pakistan on this sensitive issue, which has struck a chord with former Pakistani federal minister Ansar Burny as well as UK-based human rights lawyer Jas Uppal, who has advised Capt Kalia’s father to approach the Supreme Court. Such an important issue demands an impartial investigation.


Unmatchable personality 

Swami Vivekananda was a great spiritual master who had deep knowledge about Indian culture, philosophy and religion and its scriptures. He was a towering personality who would give soul-stirring speeches on the upliftment of mankind and the Indian nation. One such deeply inspiring speech on the universal brotherhood of mankind was given by him at Chicago’s Art Museum.

Swami Vivekananda’s intellectual aura was so great and profound that his mere passing from a place used to incite voices of “Shiva, Shiva, Shiva” in the hearts and minds of ordinary people and learned sanyasis.

Comparing him with a killer like Dawood Ibrahim as done by an educated man and leader of a national party like BJP President Nitin Gadkari is a disrespect to him, to which most Indians would take offence.

Dr ATUL KHANNA, Amritsar



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |