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Not quite the building blocks of secularism that we want

The editorial This is in bad faith (Our Take, September 16) brings to light the negligence of the authorities responsible for checking the illegal construction of places of worship. In a pseudo-secular country like ours, it’s very difficult to oppose their construction and impossible to demolish them for fear of sparking off a communal riot.

india Updated: Sep 19, 2010 23:27 IST

Not quite the building blocks of secularism that we want

The editorial This is in bad faith (Our Take, September 16) brings to light the negligence of the authorities responsible for checking the illegal construction of places of worship. In a pseudo-secular country like ours, it’s very difficult to oppose their construction and impossible to demolish them for fear of sparking off a communal riot.

Ravi Prakash, Sultanpur

II

In India it’s possible to commit any crime in the name of religion and get away with it. However, in today’s day and age when sadhus and babas enjoy political patronage and get vast tracts of land on subsidised rates to build ashrams, raking up issue of roadside encroachments by temples sounds very 20th century.

Deepjot Thukral, Ambala

A failure of governance

I disagree with Samar Halarnkar’s views as stated in the article The problem is Delhi (Maha Bharat, September 16). He blames the Centre for the unrest in Kashmir and hints at the fact that repealing the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) would improve law and order situation. But lifting AFSPA will strengthen the separatist elements and terrorists. And even if New Delhi is the real problem, revolting against it is not an option.

Ram Anuj, Dehradun

II

Ashok Bhan’s article All eyes on New Delhi (September 15) made for interesting reading. It’s true that the situation in 2010 is different from that in the 90s. But such an argument can’t be the basis for repealing AFSPA. Selfish politicians are misleading the youth in Kashmir. The state’s political leadership has failed to handle the crisis. It should have reached out to the youth in an early stage of the crisis. Now, it should try to create more job opportunities and also encourage youngsters to join mainstream politics.

Dushyant Singh Panwar, Delhi

III

With reference to the report Omar to stay CM, is backed by Rahul (September 17), it is surprising that without having visited Kashmir even once after the present crisis, Rahul Gandhi has an opinion on the matter. He should realise that Kashmir is not Bihar, where a fiery speech against the Congress’s political rival is enough to win people over. Coalition politics is forcing the Congress to back Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah even when anti-state government sentiments are running high in the Valley.

A.H. Maqdoomi, Gulbarg

Chinese checkers for India

With reference to G.D. Bakshi’s article Breathing down our neck (September 17), unlike what some experts believe, China has never been India’s ally. Its presence in Gilgit is a matter of grave concern. India is surrounded by its hostile neighbours. It’s important that we are prepared for all eventualities. Even Pakistan should be wary of China, which is trying to take advantage of its hostile ties with India.

Bal Govind, Noida

In the worst of healthcare I wholeheartedly agree with Lalita Panicker’s view that it’s high time smart solutions replace lengthy policies on maternal healthcare (It’s an emergency, September 17). How can a nation aspire to lead the world when millions of mothers and newborns die every year due to lack of proper medical facilities? The health ministry is adept at holding frequent conference and seminars on the issue. But when it comes to implementing the existing policies or formulating new ones, it throws up its hands. This attitude must change.

Saira Jacobson, via email