The editorial Flying in the face of facts (Our Take, January 13) rightly states that India’s insistence on attaining self-reliance in the defence sector is burning a hole in the exchequer’s pocket. We should realise that with limited resources and expertise, it’s impossible for India to master all technologies or manufacture all defence equipment. Take the case of Tejas; though the development of the Light Combat Aircraft is a success story, it took ages to develop it and the project has exceeded its initial cost by more than 30 times. Instead of trying to be the jack of all trades, India should master some crucial defence areas, which will help it become a key player in the global defence market.
RK Malhotra, Delhi
Politics can change many hearts
Barkha Dutt’s desperate bid to eulogise Kashmiri separatists and her demand to the government to initiate a dialogue with them are appalling (Many shades of truth, Third Eye, January 8). For decades, the separatists have instigated the people of Kashmir against governments. We should not hail them as either people’s representatives or messiahs of peace in the Valley. Their alleged ‘change of heart’ is also politically motivated. Instead of promoting them, journalists should expose how these separatists thrive on propaganda.
Lalit Ambardar, Delhi
Anyone who’s been closely following the political developments in Kashmir will agree with Dutt’s opinion. The government should grab the opportunity to start a dialogue with moderate elements among the hardliners. A carrot-and-stick approach won’t solve Kashmir’s problems. The famous Persian saying — ‘A fool also does the same what a wise man has already done, but he does it after a great suffering’ — well describes the separatists. Sooner or later, the self-styled custodians of Kashmir will do what they should have done decades ago.
Mahmood Alam, via email
Learn to live together
The reference to the Aarushi murder case in Namita Bhandare’s article Fix this lopsided relationship (Another Day, January 8) was in bad taste, as it tried to pronounce Aarushi’s father guilty. Bhandare shouldn’t jump to conclusions without verifying facts, as so far even the Central Bureau of Investigation hasn’t been able to nail the deceased’s murderer.
Ronnie Rodrigues, via email
I’ve been working for years on a dissertation on equal political citizenship and have struggled with the problem of working out theoretical details of a society in which people can live without humiliating each other. It is clear that Bhandare feels strongly about the corrosive nature of humiliation, which millions in India live with each day.
Arun Abraham, via email
Businessman not as usual
Amitava Sanyal’s assessment of Jahan-e-Khusrau in his article Jahan-e-Muzaffar (Jhankaar Beats, January 8) made for interesting reading. Muzaffar Ali is a businessman first and then an arts and music-loving raja. I can say so as I have known him from the time he was making a film on Habba Khatoon, the Kashmiri queen of the Chak dynasty, and a contemporary of the Mughals in India.
M Alam, via email
It has to work both ways
The report Govt can’t check prices due to coalition compulsions: Rahul (January 12) points to the Gandhi scion’s immaturity. He should realise that the Congress is in power because of support from coalition partners. He can’t afford to upset them. Also, if the Congress, which is leading the UPA coalition, wants to take the credit for all the good policies, then it should also take the responsibility for the bad ones. Gandhi’s statement shows that he hasn’t learnt the basic rule of good governance: take responsibility for one’s mistakes.
Ranjana Manchanda, via email