Barkha Dutt, in her article Patriot games (April 14), rightly stated that Indians are in the habit of politicising things, even if there are no real issues involved. Patriotism should not be judged merely by whether or not one salutes the flag or sings the national anthem. It must also be an effort to bond people together.
Instead of blaming Narayana Murthy, we should blame the colonial hangover of Indians who try to please the White man. This mindset needs to be changed. Sachin Tendulkar and others involved in the cake-flag incident should have taken note of the sentiments attached to
the tricolour. Just to keep it afloat, thousands of our countrymen have given up their lives, be it in the freedom movement or on the borders. Being public figures, both of them should have been more careful while exercising their freedom.
Narayana Murthy only expressed his concern, and expression of doubt is a fundamental right. This does not mean disrespect to the national anthem. Had his remarks been objectionable, the President would have taken note of it. Instead of appreciating Murthy’s contributions to the country, he is being dragged into controversies.
In almost all functions, including Doordarshan, the national anthem is played after the President’s visit or address. It is sad that we are getting involved in pretty drops and overlooking the vast ocean of promise that Narayana Murthy has created for generations to come. He is a real patriot and we are proud of him.
Sachin Tendulkar and Narayana Murthy are undoubtedly iconic symbols of our nationalism, but this does not empower them to disregard our national sentiments. What is it that makes them feel embarrassed with the words of the national anthem? The Constitution of India does not compel us to demonstrate our patriotic feelings.
AG Noorani, in Count the zigzags (April 16), seems to harbour deep prejudice against the BJP and its top leadership, who were responsible for initiating a thaw in Indo-Pak relations. The zigzags indicate the responsiveness of India to the diplomatic moves of Pakistan, which have never been smooth. They talked of friendship and engineered Kargil. It is wise to deal with them cautiously, as our leaders have always done.
Lawmakers turn lawbreakers
This has reference to the editorial Trafficking in misery (April 20). It is shameful that Babubhai Katara has been caught in the dishonourable act of human trafficking, using diplomatic passports issued to his family
by virtue of his being an MP. Katara has brought shame to his people, his state, his party, the august House to which he was elected and to the country.
It is true that human trafficking is a flourishing trade in India and the government has so far not done much to save migrants from touts. But an elected representative being caught while trying to smuggle people out of the country is shocking. After the ‘cash-for-query’ scam by some MPs and the MPLADS funds controversy by some others, the human trafficking by an MP puts the entire country to shame.
Such incidents are not new. A few months ago, an RJD MP was arrested in a train travelling without a ticket. Our leaders and politicians have forgotten all moral principles. Power makes them so blind that they are not able to differentiate between what is good and what is bad.
The Supreme Court has fixed April 23 as the date on which it will hear the interlocutory application by the Centre seeking vacation of the stay given on 27 per cent quota for OBC. But with the government relying on the 1931 census, there is likely to be some statistical jugglery about the latest update, which will enforce a stalemate again.
Much ado about nothing
There seems to be a lot of hue and cry over the Ash-Abhishek wedding, with the media tracking it closely. It is shocking that the electronic media are going out of their way to keep the ball rolling on this issue, irrespective of its relevance in one’s life. The media should put such efforts into more sensible issues.
Farzana Nigar Khan
Big cat conservation
Apropos of Barun Mitra’s article Commerce for conservation (April 18), with the number of wild tigers at an all-time low, the officials involved in ‘big cat’ conservation are hardly making any effort to save the tiger from extinction. They must learn from Russian conservationists who have helped the number of Amur Tigers, the biggest members of the cat family, almost double in the last decade.
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