Vir Sanghvi's article Remembering Rajiv (Counterpoint, September 7) is a moving tribute to a worthy son of India. The progress being made today in spheres like electronics, IT, science and technology are the consequences of his vision. Rajiv Gandhi represented the middle-class and, in them, he saw the treasure of human capital and promise of building the nation. He was a valiant warrior in the cause of democracy, never compromised on principles even for the sake of power.
Suresh Khosla, Panchkula
As Prime Minister of India, Rajiv Gandhi’s biggest failure was his foreign policy. He sent the IPKF to Sri Lanka and India lost its brave soldiers for no reason. Though he is considered Mr Clean, he came under the shadow of the Bofors scandal. He even justified the killing of innocent people in 1984 riots by saying that ‘the earth shakes when a big tree falls’.
He encashed the sympathy wave of the assassination of Indira Gandhi to get the highest mandate ever in India. Unfortunately, his ill-fated Sri Lanka policy cost him his life.
Tejpaul Singh Sachdev, Jalandhar
How can one do justice to Rajiv Gandhi’s legacy without taking into account the Shah Bano case, unlocking of the Ram temple gate, the creation of IPKF and the Bofors scandal? I think his tenure as Prime Minister was eventful as every morning we woke up to a new scandal.
Asutosh Rustogi, via email
It is surprising that Vir Sanghvi showered praise on Rajiv Gandhi without mentioning his negative policies. Bhindranwale, the root cause of the insurgency in Punjab, was a creation of Indira Gandhi. His elimination culminated in Indira Gandh’s assassination and Rajiv’s political birth which was marked by riots. The stigma of the anti-Sikh riots is still
attached to Rajiv’s name. If the Longowal accord was his achievement, the dispatch of the peace-keeping forces to Sri Lanka was a blunder. The ghost of the Bofors scandal is yet to be buried. If Sanghvi’s claim that Rajiv was India’s first middle-class Prime Minister is true, then we shall have to decide the category to which Lal Bahadur Shastri belonged.
Raghu Nath Kohli,Delhi
With reference to Indrajit Hazra’s Powerpuff presentation (Red Herring, September 7), my son has been at me to understand and learn Power Point. But I’m too lazy to upgrade my skills. Now that I have read this article, I need no longer feel guilty. If, in future, my boss asks me to do a PP, I can thankfully quote from this piece.
Mina Anand, Chennai