Comparisons are unwarranted
Apropos of Abhinav Kumar’s article Snipers, Stay away (March 3), it has been demonstrated over the years that when the civil administration fails, the Army is called out to save the day where a captain or lieutenant colonel is normally in charge. Messes and clubs are maintained from officers’ subscriptions and are a necessity for promoting comradeship. Defence personnel don’t resent awards being given to police officers and, unlike our neighbours, honour our democratic traditions.
UP Mathur, via email
No place for a colonial relic
We ask the Home Minister to decriminalise homosexuality in India. As an emerging global power, India cannot continue to rely on archaic colonial laws that are nearly 150 years old and which oppress a group of citizens whose sexuality is a normal variation of human behaviour. Speaking as representatives of the mental health profession, we assert that there is no evidence that homosexuality is a mental illness, now supported by a large body of research. But as a result of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code still being law, there is government sanction of such discrimination. A group of citizens are being unjustifiably denied essential freedoms, and are often physically abused and blackmailed by the police and other malicious individuals.
Dr E. Mohandas, President-Elect, Indian Psychiatric Society, Dr Nada Stotland, President, American Psychiatric Association, Prof Dinesh Bhugra, President,
Royal College of Psychiatrists
Pak has shot itself in the foot
The terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team underscores the control that extremists exert over Pakistan, where sportsmen have been targeted for the first time since the Munich Olympics massacre. No country will risk touring Pakistan now. Pakistan, with its protracted history of military rule, lacks democratic traditions and now, due to the impact of fundamentalists, it is getting torn between the army and extremists. It can no longer shun responsibility for fostering terrorism and must act now.
Rajendra K Aneja, Dubai
The mindless attack on cricketers in Pakistan leaves no doubt that the country’s democratic values are on the verge of collapse. Cricket has long symbolised the amity between nations, but this attack has put paid to that too. It’s time the international community stepped in to douse the fire of Talibanisation threatening to engulf peace-loving people.
Safiuddin Khan, Delhi
The attack on the Sri Lankan team is a bestial act. Sportsmen not only represent their country, but are also role models. Sri Lankan cricketers have always maintained the dignity and decorum of the game. If these terrorists are targeting innocents in the name of religion, let it be clear that such sinful acts have no place in any religion. Pakistan has fallen to the lowest rung of morality and has no face to show to the world.
Manzar Imam Qasmi, Delhi
A rudderless ship
With reference to the editorial The election season is here (Our Take, March 3), all political parties seem busy scouting for alliances now. Mutual distrust, and haggling over seats have upstaged the evolution of election manifestoes. Obviously, the electorate means little to them, even at a time when the nation is faced with a serious economic crisis. Is this not an indication of a failed State?
Janaki Narayanan, via email
Hitting the air pockets
With reference to the editorial No-go with the flow (March 2), air travel is becoming increasingly expensive, even as airline services continue to deteriorate. People have to endure long hours of travelling in cramped spaces and sub-standard food. There’s no regard for the comfort of senior citizens. It’s wrong to charge passengers for using the facilities merely to answer the call of nature.
Usha Kumar, Delhi