THE BJP capitalised on venomous hate-mongering and a divisive agenda against religious and social communities to garner votes in the 2017 UP elections (‘When Indians get angry’, Nous Indica). As the party is gearing up for its momentous electoral fight against the SP, it seems to be in a tight corner because political polarisation is not likely to gain traction. The spate of resignations and defections of senior leaders and their joining the SP might also cost it dear. Moreover, the SP is reviving its alliance with the RLD and is desperately wooing the Muslims, Dalits and backward classes. Courtesy the ruling dispensation’s poor track record of performance, people are venting their ire and anguish on rising unemployment, inflation and farmers’ insult during their year-long agitation against the Centre’s farm laws. What they want is change for the better, peace, social harmony and inclusive development.
Tajpreet S Kang, Hoshiarpur
Refer to ‘When Indians get angry’ (Nous Indica); the elections in UP usually witness politics of appeasement and polarisation, involving caste, region, religion and nationalism. Our overindulgent parties have conveniently intertwined religion, nationalism and casteism to make them tools for ascendancy to power, leading to fanaticism. Recent hate speeches in Haridwar and Raipur were aimed at polarising the voters and creating a pretext for fuelling hatred, violence, prejudice and bigotry. Not only secularism, but also Hinduism is being lacerated by Hindutva outfits.
Abhimanyu Malik, Jind
It is necessary to bring about policies to revive the economy (‘Possible to rejig economy through cash transfers’). Major slice of GDP has been eaten away by schemes like free food grains, free vaccines, free cooking gas, wage support and fertiliser subsidy. India has attained self-sufficiency in food grains and is able to give free ration to a large population, but have we ever tried to know whether the grains given free are sufficient for a month for the family of four or five? The reality is that giving free grains to the people has no real value, rather it affects the economy adversely. Instead it would have been better if there were cash transfers. Cash flow in the market is the only remedy to revive the economy. Businesses should be allowed a credit off-take path, there will be job creation.
Raj Kumar Kapoor, Ropar
PM of India, not BJP
The Election Commissioner should permanently ban the Prime Minister from making election speeches during parliamentary and Assembly elections. Since the PM is appointed by the Government of India under the Constitution and takes oath that he will work for all Indian citizens and with all parties. In the forthcoming elections in five states, the EC should take a decision to ban the PM from giving speeches since he is the PM of India, not of the BJP.
SC Dhall, Zirakpur
Reference to ‘Keeping bride’s jewellery for safety not cruelty: SC’, the jewellery is a bride’s asset, and her in-laws have no right to take it into their custody. If in any unavoidable circumstances or in sensitive times, they do need her jewellery, they can ask for it. The Supreme Court should not give such verdicts that go against women’s rights.
Abhilasha Gupta, Mohali
There are certain vicissitudes in life that leave a lasting impact (‘Message from a table calendar’) I headed a panel for the selection of a post of sub-staff, and on merit, finalised a lone Muslim candidate among others from other religious denominations. My fair choice didn't find favour with other members. They remained silent, but resentment was writ large on their faces. Having failed to oppose me, they subtly approached a union leader, who, at lunch, cajoled me to change my decision. But I held my ground.
BAKHSHI GURPRIT SINGH, JALANDHAR
When we used to be kids, the festival of Makar Sakranti and Lohri were celebrated with peanuts, rabdis and the famous dal churma in Haryana. With the coming of modernisation and stress, we see these festivals as mere holidays. Remembering those days brings happy memories of Lohri bonfires in schpl playgrounds, while some students performed dramas and sang the lokgeet, ‘Sunder munderiya’. Later in my life I came to know about the meaning of this song, which made it even better.
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